UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak has found an ingenious scheme to ensure that Britain never recovers from the economic damage caused by the lockdown: a ‘green industrial revolution.’
According to The Times of London:
Rishi Sunak is planning a ‘green industrial revolution’ to help to create jobs for people who are made redundant because of the pandemic.
The chancellor is preparing to bolster the government’s investment in clean energy as part of an economic stimulus package next month. There could also be a fund to help to ‘reskill’ workers so they can get green jobs in areas such as insulation upgrades, offshore wind and carbon capture.
The measures are understood to go significantly beyond the Conservatives’ manifesto commitment to create two million jobs in clean energy within the next decade. The Tories have promised to cut greenhouse gas emissions to ‘net zero’ by 2050.
A green industrial revolution is a bit like the original industrial revolution, except for one or two crucial differences: instead of boosting prosperity, creating jobs and stimulating economic growth, it does the exact opposite.
For example, a study by economics professor Dr Gabriel Calzada Alvarez of Madrid’s University of Rey Juan Carlos found that for every ‘green job’ created by the Spanish government, another 2.2 jobs were destroyed in the real economy.
Another study, this time in the UK, found that for every green job created by government ‘investment’ in the renewables industry, 3.7 jobs were destroyed in the real economy.
Sunak’s plan to squander yet more taxpayers’ money on green, crony-capitalist boondoggles is depressing but not remotely surprising.
Dr John Constable, energy editor of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), warned that this was going to happen in a short paper published last month ‘The Fatal Attraction of a Post-Covid Green New Deal.’
Constable says that Net Zero – Britain’s answer to the Green New Deal – was ‘deeply unwise’ even before the economic collapse caused by the government’s response to the Chinese coronavirus.
But in the post-Covid-19 world we now inhabit – economies in a state of ‘deep contraction’, against a background of ‘highly significant increases in geopolitical tension’ – it is more foolish still.
‘One might think that in such a context, those still lobbying for Net Zero would be desperately worried, but this would be a facile error. In fact, the greens and their corporate collaborators see this as a great opportunity, and in my judgement they are correct. Administrations around the world will indeed be very tempted to use tax- and levy-funded public spending badges as ‘low carbon investment’ to provide a stimulus to post-Covid economies. It is perfectly true that this would create a large wealth transfer in an already contracting economy, delivering great absolute and relative wealth to those invested in the green industries, with corresponding transfers of socio-political power, but even if they understood that outcome, the bureaucracy will press on, barely restrained if at all by elected representatives.’
There is going to be no escaping this looming disaster, caused by a mass outbreak of green groupthink at virtually every level of the Boris Johnson administration – from Prime Ministerial girlfriends (green activist Carrie Symonds) to key members of the quadrumvirate (Greenest Gove ever), from Prime Ministerial advisors (Dom Cummings) to formerly sound Tory MPs who definitely aren’t any more because they’ve been put on the payroll and have to spout whatever eco bilge they are told to spout.
In the latter category, we can include Energy Minister Kwasi Kwarteng who, shamingly, can now be heard spouting drivel about how the UK is going to become a ‘world leader in tackling climate change’ by launching a carbon Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).
Meanwhile, as Western nations choose to hobble their recoveries by burdening their economies with more expensive energy, the Eastern powers, led by China, are heading in the opposite direction.
According to the Times, China is upping its coal usage:
However, Wood Mackenzie estimates that demand for thermal coal — the type used primarily in power stations (as distinct from coking coal for steelmaking) — had already fallen to about 556 million tonnes in the US last year, with Europe at about 534 million tonnes.
By contrast, China consumed about 3.6 billion tonnes of thermal coal, or roughly half of global demand, followed by India on 946 million tonnes — and in Asia-Pacific there is “still a huge amount of coal [power] generation getting added this year”.
The consultancy estimates that there will be a net increase in coal-fired power capacity globally this year, with 22 gigawatts of closures in Europe and the US easily offset by 49 gigawatts of plants opening in Asia-Pacific.
China is also — Reuters reports — driving global oil demand:
China’s oil demand has recovered to more than 90% of the levels seen before the coronavirus pandemic struck early this year, a surprisingly robust rebound that could be mirrored elsewhere in the third quarter as more countries emerge from lockdowns.
As Oscar Wilde’s Lady Bracknell almost said, ‘to commit one major act of economic suicide in a year may be regarded as a misfortune, but to commit a second one in the same year looks like carelessness.’
What exactly did Britain do to deserve a Conservative government quite this lumpen, embarrassing and un-Conservative? And given that the Opposition is actually even worse what can we possibly do to save ourselves from this ongoing, slow-motion train wreck of a disaster?