Sustainability

Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than petrol for global warming

Uh oh…more bad news for those proponents of biofuels…the so-called green fuels are actually worse for the environment.

Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term, a study shows, challenging the Obama administration’s conclusions that they are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help combat climate change.

A $500,000 study paid for by the federal government and released Sunday in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Climate Change concludes that biofuels made with corn residue release 7 percent more greenhouse gases in the early years compared with conventional gasoline.

While biofuels are better in the long run, the study says they won’t meet a standard set in a 2007 energy law to qualify as renewable fuel.

The conclusions deal a blow to what are known as cellulosic biofuels, which have received more than a billion dollars in federal support but have struggled to meet volume targets mandated by law. About half of the initial market in cellulosics is expected to be derived from corn residue.

Read more »

The seppos are looking at fart taxes now

We managed to defeat Helen Clark’s plans to impose fart taxes on the nations cattle.

The battle is only beginning in the US where a wider ranging fart tax is being proposed.

Last month, the President released a climate action plan designed to cut methane emissions.

If you are a cow, be afraid. Be very afraid.

The same goes for humans.

The plan outlines voluntary measures, such as a “Biogas Roadmap,” to reduce dairy sector greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent by 2020. There’s concern though that these measures merely represent the tip of the iceberg.

Agriculture accounts for only about 8 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions from human activities. Within that 8 percent, the second largest source of agriculture emissions is enteric fermentation—the digestive process that leads to cow methane emissions, which are emittedin ways that are not appreciated at dinner parties. Methane emissions from enteric fermentation, while covering numerous livestock animals, are overwhelmingly from cows. Read more »

The unintended of consequences of ill-conceived policy

Labour and the Greens announced that they were prepared to implement a North Korean style central power regulator and buying mechanism on the premise it would lower prices.

Report after report and real life examples have proven otherwise. Another unintended consequence is that renewable energy projects would be unlikely to proceed and instead thermal solutions sought.

The head of New Zealand’s largest electricity generator says the Opposition owes it to New Zealand to give more details of its power plans.

And he warned the plan could undermine investment in renewable energy.

Labour and the Greens have jointly proposed scrapping the wholesale energy market in favour of a single state-operated buyer of electricity, called NZ Power, claiming the move would save hundreds of millions of dollars on consumer power bills.

Today Mark Binns, chief executive of Meridian Energy, told the commerce select committee that while a lack of detail meant it was hard to properly analyse the plan, Meridian believed it would favour thermal generation over renewable plants such as wind farms.

“Our view is it would potentially impact on renewables because it would make thermals, particularly gas plants – which are easier to consent and easier to put in place quickly – more viable in that environment,” Binns told MPs. Read more »

Wind power destroys your house values

If you needed another reason to hate wind power, the preferred choice of the green taliban and useful idiots like David Farrar, then this should be the final kicker for you.

We al;ready know they kill thousands of birds, use squillions of rare earth metals, don’t work as often as they are needed, are uneconomic unless heavily subsidised are visual and noise pollution.

Wind turbines destroy house values.

The presence of wind turbines  near homes has wiped tens of thousands of pounds off their value, according to the first major study into the impact the eyesore structures have on house prices.

The study by the London School  of Economics (LSE) – which looked at more than a million sales of properties close to wind farm sites over a 12-year period – found that values of homes within 1.2  miles of large wind farms were being slashed by about 11 per cent.  Read more »

The human cost of green taliban policies

The hippies of the Green Taliban love biofuels. The politicians who cave in to hippy eco-terrorists also love biofuels.

But biofuels are inefficient, cause hunger and air pollution, and cost taxpayers billions.

Last week, the EU missed an opportunity to end the most wasteful green programme of our time – one which costs billions of pounds annually and causes at least 30 million people to go hungry every year. By failing to agree a cap on the use of biofuels, the Council of Ministers has given tacit support for a technology that is bad for both taxpayer and environment. Legislation will now be delayed until 2015.

The biofuel story is a perfect example of good intentions leading to terrible outcomes. Moreover, it is a lesson on how powerful, pseudo-green vested interests can sustain a bad policy. Hopefully, it will also be a story of how reason can prevail in the divisive climate debate.   Read more »

Obama gives bird blenders 30 year licence to kill eagles

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I hate wind power…it junks up the view, makes an unholy racket and slaughters birds, in particular raptors.

But Obama has now given the companies running bird blenders a 30 year licence to kill eagles.

The Obama administration has just given wind turbine operators the license to kill birds and eagles for 30 years, a move welcomed by the wind industry but derided by environmentalists and Republicans.

The Interior Department changed a rule that now enables the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to extend the amount of time renewable energy companies can kill migratory birds and eagles in a bid to boost green energy development. Wind operators can now get a permit to kill birds for 30 years, up from five years.  Read more »

Electric Car farce in UK, councils blow millions

Green projects worldwide are failing and taxpayers and ratepayers are picking up the bills, especially for idiot projects associated with electric cars.

Councils across the UK have spent more than ÂŁ7.2m on charging points for electric cars over the last three years but many are not being used.

One in six councils admitted to having at least one point which has not been used at all over the past year.

While less than a third of authorities have a charging point used on average more than once a week, more than half of which are used only by council vehicles.

BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours found that council spending amounts to ÂŁ1,750 per electric car.  Read more »

Pommy green taxes will add a third to electricity prices by 2020

Thanks to the green taliban, stealth taxes and subsidies in the UK poms can look forward to their electricity bills being more than a third higher than they are now by 2020.

Swingeing green stealth levies on energy bills are ‘perverse’ and should be scrapped, MPs warn today.

A major report says the taxes are hitting poorer families hardest.

MPs also call for middle-class pensioners to lose their winter fuel allowance, with the savings redirected to help low-income households insulate their homes.

And they attack the regulator Ofgem for failing to hold energy firms to account for soaring prices.  Read more »

Rise of the Green-empire

Photo/ NZGBC Facebook

Photo/ NZGBC Facebook

Policy Parrot says:

Green buildings are a farce.

Firstly green buildings are championed by an industry that is self promoting and eager to grow. These businesses have ingenuously attached their ideas and products to the notion ‘green’ and with a powerful lobby convinced everyone that building sustainable buildings are required to save the planet.

Utter cods-wallop and trite.

In New Zealand we have the Green Building Council. It offers services including certification for office buildings in the form of a star rating from 3-6 stars depending on how many points a building earns after evaluation. The cost for this ‘certificate’ is $100-150,000.

The Green Building Council is under threat from other similar rating organisations that have arrived or about to arrive from overseas and who will offer rival rating systems for building owners. Competition. Which system is better and who says any of them mean anything? Aren’t these organisations simply spruiker’s capitalising on the modern day popular trend?

Lets be clear – this is a rating industry masquerading under the banner ‘green’. It’s making loads of money selling certificates to building owners so that they in turn can sell or lease buildings to tenants who think (but don’t know) that the buildings are somehow better for the environment and lower costs.

But where is the proof?     Read more »

Intensification – A Dense Idea

While Len Brown wants to sock landowners with a 70% stealth tax from Canada, new evidence is emerging that despite his claims of following best practice for intensification, it is in fact detrimental.

It turns out cramming more people into cities won’t help the environment or our health, and may even hurt the economy

… In the eyes of many city planners and political leaders, the suburban ideal of the single-detached house on a quiet cul-de-sac, complete with a large yard and the requisite lengthy commute, is a relic of a bygone and largely unsustainable era. In its place, they are pushing for “smart growth” communities featuring high-density housing—usually in the form of apartment and condo complexes—in mixed-use neighbourhoods where everyone walks, bikes or takes the bus. It’s the only way, we’re told, to handle our rapid population growth without destroying the environment and clogging streets with traffic.

Urban planners have been hotly debating how to cope with sprawl—or whether we even need to cope with it at all—for decades. But the smart-growth movement has picked up steam over the past decade as environmentalists concerned about global warming pointed the finger squarely at the suburban commuter for contributing to climate change.  Read more »