Doomed Planet

Tapping the Power of Telling the Truth

Real Russian collusion afoot. Is it that rascally Trump again? Him of mean tweets which he irreverently directed at left-wing sleaze pits? Not that time and certainly not this time. Consider the following menu of pro-Russian dirty deeds since January 2021.

Cancelling the Keystone Pipeline. Cancelling the EastMed natural-gas pipeline from Israel to Europe. Banning fracking on federal lands; suspending oil and gas leasing on federal lands; suspending oil-drilling leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR); ordering US government agencies to immediately stop financing new carbon-intensive fossil-fuel projects overseas. Boosting subsidies for renewables, thereby further undermining the development of fossil-fuel energy. Ticking Nord Stream 2 natural-gas pipeline from Russia to Germany.

As a side dish, cease building that southern wall, open the Mexico border and, ignobly and ignominiously, scramble out of Afghanistan, leaving dead and living Americans behind.

Job done? Not quite yet. There’s the lousy Iranian deal to get redone. Still, Trump’s polices have been mostly reversed. America diminished and hamstrung; Putin enriched and emboldened. Ukraine invaded.

But no mean tweets, thank goodness.

The legion of anti-Trump journos, including those precious wretches writing for our supposedly centre-right broadsheet, and those supposed conservative never-Trumpers, must all be dying of shame and insufferable remorse right now. Mustn’t they?

Don’t want to make light of people being killed in Ukraine. So, bear that in mind when I say, tongue in cheek, that in a near future Russian, not to mention Chinese, armoured vehicles and tanks will be easily disabled. Smart-meter technology will allow countries to selectively cut off power and prevent tanks and such from recharging their batteries. Game over.

Incidentally, if you think that the Russians and Chinese won’t fall into line on electrification, you haven’t been listening to John Kerry. He expressed hope that this Ukrainian diversion wouldn’t take Putin’s attention away from combatting climate change. I can’t believe that Putin will ignore this cri de coeur.

Seriously, folks, I would have thought this heartfelt plea by Kerry was a made-up story by, say, Rebel News or some other right-wing outlet. But, no, I’ve seen the tape. These people have completely lost the plot. They are certifiably insane. That’s fine if they were locked away. But they are in charge. And, most threateningly, they have no lookalikes in the Kremlin; or in the upper echelons of the CCP; or, for that matter, among the council of guardians in Iran.

I’ve said it before. I’ll say it again. Those opposing the wholesale replacement of our reliable fossil-fuel power with unreliable renewables have it right. It will be enormously costly (in money, in land, and in dislocation and employment) and ultimately will fail to provide the sine qua non of a modern economy. To wit, to deliver sufficient 24×7 power, as and when required. At the same time, this seriously understates the problem. That problem sits under the heading of national security.

A country can’t defend its borders without power. Consider WWII. Incessant bombing and blockades yet industry kept running, the lights came on, on both sides, and the tanks kept rumbling. Coal and oil were the keys. They are primary sources of energy. They are energy dense, portable and widely available and accessible.

Imagine now a country whose energy is all supplied by highly-visible (sitting duck) renewables strung out over vast acreages of land and seas; transmission lines everywhere. Everything dependent – heating, cooling, manufacturing, farming, mining, services, transport – on harnessing wind and sun. No primary energy source, no energy density, no portability. This is a recipe for giving up without a fight if threatened. We simply don’t live in the world that Western elites imagine. Peace and mutual respect for each other’s territory and self-determination is a chimera.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen expressed disbelief that Russia could invade Ukraine in this day and age. This day-and-age is no different from other days and ages, except we have smart phones. Ruthless expansionist leaders, bad guys if you will, have and always will be around. Best not to present yourself as easy prey in any age.

It’s time, and a chance, for Morrison to take some high ground and maybe win the election. Forget Boris or Biden or Macron et al, they are too compromised and too weak. Make it clear that coal, oil and gas will remain the dominant form of energy in Australia. Explain that it’s a matter of national security; of our very survival as nation. Make the awful events in Ukraine count for some good.

National security trumps everything else. Toiling in salt mines in China will feel no better for the world’s temperature being half a degree cooler. Not that it will be cooler. I’ll take a guess. Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping and Ali Khamenei don’t give a flying something-or-other about climate change, real or imagined.

28 comments
  • bobmbell39

    I am still trying to find a believable scientific explanation and associated data to prove extra co2 is causing climate change. It still looks like a normal and now slowing increase since the end of the little ice age. Man made alterations to temperature readings also don’t inspire belief. When will there be a proper debate on this.

  • pgang

    Yes.
    But why assume an expansionist strategy from Russia? The article is about how the west is destroying itself with stupidity, and how countries like Russia aren’t buying into that level of stupidity. Can’t we then assume that for Russia this could be more about protecting itself from us?

  • lhackett01

    Absolutely correct Peter Smith. Wokism and white guilt continue to diminish any capability the ‘West” had to defend itself against almost anything today. We must awaken, rediscover the bases of Western civilzation, and stop pretending that the world is as we would want it to be; that is, a world ruled by common values and laws.

    bobmbell39, your doubts about CO2 causing climate change are wellfounded, in my opinion. You may be interested in two of my papers on the subject, “Global Warming Misunderstood” and “The Impact of Greenhouse Gases on Earth’s Spectral Radiance. Both are based on evidence and the work of other scientists. Both cast doubt on the present, prevailing mantras. They can be read, for free, at https://www.scribd.com/document/383385011/ and https://www.scribd.com/document/529064626/, respectively.

  • RB

  • tommbell

    In order for Morrison to take the “high ground” he needs to have some beliefs rooted in sound principles. As a so called “Liberal”, promising energy independence would appear to be a no- brainer. Especially, as you say, in these times. But half the Liberal caucus think 2030 should be the target. (Let’s not bother asking Matt Kean and other like minded State operatives what their views are). And ScoMo has neither the gumption (nor one suspects, the numbers) to call this crap out. He will go to the election asserting to one half of his congregation that nothing will change – and to the other that transitioning to renewables is a priority. So a man of no principle other than self preservation will go to the election praying for another miracle. I’m pretty sure he’ll be disppointed this time around…

  • Elizabeth Beare

    Hold on, pgang. We are in the firing line to need to protect ourselves from China.
    I hope Morrison does take a lesson from Russian aggression and put us in a far more self-reliant energy position. He needs to back out of net zero fast and he can use the Russia excuse to do so.
    He could possibly still win the election if he did this. It could be his lifeline, no matter what else he has done to our freedoms in the name of Covid and other ridiculous and OTT things like throwing unnecessary money at the Great Barrier Reef. What better way to destroy tourism there than tell the world it is dying; especially when it is actually thriving? Morrison’s stupidities, like tolerating the white-ants within his own Party, are many, but at least now he could do some retrieving. What is sure is the Labor will not do this; they will ask for a belly tickle from China. And buy more wind turbines and solar panels from them too. Until our resources, and our lack of utilising them, bring China to our doorstep, making us the Ukraine of Asia.

  • Elizabeth Beare

    I can look out of my window where I type this and see South Head and imagine two things: one is Governor Phillip arriving in 1788 to take possession of Sydney Cove for the Crown under orders of the Enlightenment, and the other is a fleet of Chinese battleships rounding the heads towards the main harbour to take possession of Sydney. I wonder what I would do if I saw that, hare in the headlights maybe?

  • DougD

    “now he could do some retrieving” – I think this pig is beyond ever learning to fly.

  • Geoff Sherrington

    bombell39,
    Much fault is with people like successive, Chief Scientists, Australian Academy of Science and similar professional bodies, learned societies like the Royal Australasian College of Physicians who confidently state “Anthropogenic climate change is a global public health emergency. It is, at the same time, a major
    threat and a major opportunity for planetary health and health equity.” One strongly suspects that they know bugger all about what they write.
    There is a widespread problem, that few scientists who pontificate have ever studied this complex climate science at the depth required to understand it and inform others about it. These almighty people and bodies seem to have done no more than repeat the mantra.
    We need some public written examinations of these officials who have spoken, to see how much they really know. It should be compulsory for each one of them. I’d be happy to write the questions. Geoff S

  • Elizabeth Beare

    Geoff S – didn’t Pauline Hanson call for a Royal Commission into the whole climate change issue?
    I expect it would simply be over-run with warmist religionists, but perhaps an occasional voice of query and sanity might rise up. Responses on the left certainly do have a taint of religious fervor about the issue, and they see the war on coal as a sort of holy war. This nonsense has to stop, be challenged, and other perspectives on industrial dependence need to enter the debate, especially post-Ukraine.

  • Daffy

    Russia might have a couple of objectives in Ukraine: natural resources, in which it is rich, and a try out of Russian military and Western resolve…of which none evident.

    BTW, I thought Kerry was on either the Babylon Bee or the Onion News Network…if it is still operating (sure hope so).

  • ianl

    Elizabeth

    Although you appear to have some hope that Morrison will make some gesture towards dampening Net Zero to try and scrape through the election, just observe the crab walks that Kenny and Credlin are doing in going green – subtle enough to avoid outright exposure from their stance 12 months ago but constantly nudging now with selected interviews and so on. Neither of them, plus Bolt, have any relation to scientific literacy other than ignorance, although Kenny does occasionally try.

    I expect this means that Morrison needs protection from the righteous anger of those whom he has deliberately double-crossed on a great number of issues, and that with utter contempt. For this he does not deserve to be rewarded with another term. People can use the excuse the Libs always use: “The ALP is worse”. For myself, I no longer care. His contempt for his voter base should incur equal treatment of him.

  • Biggles

    bobmbell39. CO2 has run its race as far as being a greehouse gas is concerned. Please refer to the work of Prof. Wal Happer of Princeton.
    As regards the coming drop in the Earth’s temperature due to reduced output from the Sun until about 2053, please refer to the work of Prof Valentina Zharkova. The evidence is all out there; you must just have the wit to understand it.

  • Biggles

    Daffy. May I propose a future move in the Socialist race for possession of global energy and minerals? President Putin wants to be the Tsar of all the Russias, but President Xi wants to be Emperor of The World. The two are buddies now, but watch Xi turn against Putin when the time is right. The Russian Federation, which spans ten time-zones, must hold enormous mineral wealth. Xi wants that for China.

  • Elizabeth Beare

    Ianl, I think the ALP would definitely be worse, much worse, unbearably worse in fact, and so I will be voting to try to temper Morrison with some good other-Party Senators who will assist him to move away from the climate nonsense and other woke stuff. In the Reps I will pick an alternative to my woke MP Dave Sharma, although not the deep green Homes a Court candidate Allegra Spender. There is a good LDP candidate standing and I can pick my preferences to send a message. Excellent.
    That seems to me to be far better than tossing it all to Labor because I am annoyed.

  • Ian MacDougall

    QUOTE FROM THE PETER SMITH THREADSTARTER:
    “A country can’t defend its borders without power. Consider WWII. Incessant bombing and blockades yet industry kept running, the lights came on, on both sides, and the tanks kept rumbling. Coal and oil were the keys. They are primary sources of energy. They are energy dense, portable and widely available and accessible.
    “Imagine now a country whose energy is all supplied by highly-visible (sitting duck) renewables strung out over vast acreages of land and seas; transmission lines everywhere. ”
    Hang on there, Peter. Coal-fired power gives us centralised power generation with your “transmission lines everywhere.” Solar power stations (like the 6.5kW array I have on my own roof) are the very epitome of decentralisation. I get paid for the power I feed into the grid, but can become totally self-sufficient and run off my battery storage during blackouts, when for whatever reason (in the most recent case, a nearby lightning strike) knocks out the local grid.
    Centralised thermal and nuclear power stations will ever make sitting-duck targets for artillery fire and aerial bombardment, with the latter creating for the defenders the additional problem of a Chernobyl-style core meltdown.
    Quadrant accepts unsolicited, previously unpublished articles that fit within its general profile of a journal of ideas, essays, literature, poetry and historical and political debate. Although it retains its founding bias towards cultural freedom, anti-totalitarianism and classical liberalism,its pages are open to any well-written and thoughtful contribution. Some of our writers are internationally renowned; some are previously unknown.
    .https://quadrant.org.au/submissions/
    (Posted into the limbo of the ‘awaiting approval’, political-correctness testing queue for this ‘liberal’ online journal at 11:25 PM, Tuesday March 1, 2022.)

  • ianl

    Elisabeth

    Your “solution” (voting LDP or whatever) depends entirely on such candidates actually offering in the HoR electorates. This situation simply doesn’t exist. Most of the “independents” are just ALP/Green plants and compulsory preferences ensure one of the three (Lib, ALP or Green) get over the line in sufficient quantity. In fact, your “solution” for the HoR is a feeble protest – because you are annoyed. Rationalise as you may.

    I’m more than “annoyed”. The persistent double-crosses do not deserve another term. My own HoR electorate will return 65% ALP/Green so it matters not. I hope the Senate is stalemated of course, but we are yet to see the candidate list. Nonetheless, net zero is now bipartisan. Neither yours nor my feeble protests will stop it. The difference here is that I understand that.

  • Rob H

    Scott Morrison is not a Leader. He is a follower. QED

  • ianl

    Should have added this link in my earlier post:

    https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/germany-step-up-plans-cut-dependence-russia-gas-2022-02-27/

    Yet Aus has bipartisan Pollyanna politics where we fruitlessly squabble over whether “net zero” will be implemented by 5 or 10 years with no coherence to the rhetoric and then imagine voting will change that. Of course we wouldn’t be double-crossed yet again, would we ?

    Germany has only changed because Putin declared war on Ukraine and left Pollyanna Merkel without protection, not because of some popular voting pattern. This imbecilic jihad on CO2 is only stopped by being almost literally thumped up by thugs.

  • Ceres

    A ripper article once again Peter. Depressing also as it’s too late for a tread water Morrison to address imperatives, belatedly. Things which should have been done in his first 6 months, like the left do.
    So obvious what’s coming with giving away our abundant energy supplies. Even leftie Macron is ramping up his nuclear power as Putin’s wake up call hit Europe. The realisation that you have to be self sufficient in reliable energy. Not one big happy family of countries.
    Like your comments too, Iani and your description of Kenny and Credlin “crabwalking”. So true.

  • BalancedObservation

    John Kerry’s statement is totally incredible. It should be publicized widely by conservatives. It shows the complete lack of balance on the left.

    We really have gone down hill when using the truth seems a novel idea when it’s promoted like it is here. But this is in fact quite a novel idea being promoted by this article.

    Sadly the fact is it’s actually novel to stand up for the truth.

  • Elizabeth Beare

    “Nonetheless, net zero is now bipartisan. Neither yours nor my feeble protests will stop it. The difference here is that I understand that.”
    Feeble my protests may be but at least I can still make them, and where I can I will do so. I know that not everyone will have the voting opportunities available for such protests. So it is good to protest here.
    One of the most important things we can do as commenters on small websites is to stand together as much as possible and draw succour that there are other more or less like-minded people to still talk to.

  • Elizabeth Beare

    Even Albrechtsen’s ‘Polyanna’ piece today has a crab-walk in it – we should, she says, move towards renewables at a slower pace. I query why we need to move towards them at all. Time for some of our own subsidy-feeding climate oligarchs to take a financial bath as we toss out their ideological program?

  • Peter Marriott

    Good piece Peter ; clear and concise. The main thing in my mind is how to get Australia back to some semblance of independence vis-à-vis our manufacturing industry, including of course, ferrous and non-ferrous metal production, oil refining and defence equipment, and it has to be able to be accomplished at a reasonable profit to the investors so they can employ more workers. The only way to achieve this, at least the major way, is via cheap, reliable, electricity, via short compact supply lines which in my mind can only be achieved using our readily available hundreds of years supply of coal, via very large mains power stations close to the major manufacturing centres and smaller ones for the remote areas but still with short supply lines ; with nuclear coming along in the rear for the future, in a minor way for starters to give us the back up. Needless to say there should be no on going subsidising of anything ; a level playing field for all in which case the price would be halved or less for coal power and doubled or trebled or more for solar and wind, and normal market forces would prevail. It’s the old argument of course, and the old way of doing things, albeit with more efficient generators, that the bien pensants laugh out loud at in light of the fact that they’re all running around closing the old ones, but it’s still the only way to go…bar none, if we ever want to get anywhere, and it’s never too late to start again. I won’t even comment on the silly climate change hypothesis and the magical power of CO2, except perhaps to say that I didn’t think there was anyone of any sense left who still believed in it….and I mean really believes in it.
    As for the EC President unable to believe that Russia could invade Ukraine…..spare me….that’s what you get when real detached elites are given unelected power, totally disconnected from the man in the street. It’s also I think a good example of the stupidity of replacing independent nations with a great borderless, behemonth, “noname’ something with thousands of bureaucrats and officials with no real constituency and no loyalty to anything other than a fancy abstract ideal, i.e. the EU.

  • pgang

    Nobody ever considers the energy supply chain losses in relation to electric vehicles.
    We convert about 30% of fossil fuel energy to usable energy that does work (in cars, power stations, etc).
    Put petrol in a car, get a 30% return.
    EV’s run at about 90% efficiency, as do lipo batteries. Sounds great (81% efficient overall). Except it doesn’t take into account the initial energy generation. Given that fossil fuels will always supply a minimum 80% of electrical energy requirements, we can assume that EV’s will be powered by fossil fuels.
    So we end up with 81% efficiency of 30% efficiency (ignoring substantial transmission losses).
    So an EV is much less energy efficient than an IC powered car. For every bit of fossil fuel used, you travel fewer km’s in an EV than with an IC.
    Of course it only gets worse when you add in battery production requirements. Or when you add in the massively inefficient feed-ins from intermittent energy supplies which are ultimately just a very inefficient extension of fossil fuel usage.

  • Elizabeth Beare

    Great comment, Peter Marriott.

    Gotta hand it to Quadrant Online, this site is open, free and very useful for information and opinion.

  • john2

    I gotta agree with the Hon. MacDougall on this one, Peter Smith – at least as regards the vulnerability of electricity infrastructure to acts of conventional war. It is easier to bomb, and thus disable, a large scale fossil fuel or hydro power station (if your intelligence is good enough to target the most difficult-to-replace bits of kit in a power station – eg the boilers and turbo-generators). These are few (less than 30 coal and hydro in the NEM) and very big (500-3000MW), so taking out only a few of the biggies will return a big bang of misery in the economy for just a few (mega)bucks worth of high explosive missiles. In contrast, wind and solar generators (both large-scale solar farms, and rooftop solar), are hard to take out due to their large numbers and geographical dispersion. And transmission lines are relatively easy to repair/replace. So, arguably the distributed nature of wind and solar provides greater resilience against direct hits in a hot war.
    However, increasing penetrations of renewables have their own problems of contributing to reduced stability of the grid even at the best of times (never mind the worst of times), and their intermittency and non-dispatchability are highly problematic – to the extent that the grid may in the near future become unworkable and vulnerable all on its own. With our green friends pushing pell-mell for 100% renewables, we won’t need enemies to destroy the grid for us. The friendly fire is proving quite deadly as it is.

  • Alice Thermopolis

    Ole Humlum’s CLIMATE4YOU UPDATE JANUARY 2022 tells us all we need to know about the bogeyman CC http://www.climate4you.com/Text/Climate4you_January_2022.pdf

    Or go to the January 2022 ‘update’ link at http://www.climate4you.com.

    Summary point 5: “natural sources and sinks of atmospheric carbon dioxide FAR OUTWEIGH human contributions.”
    Summary point 4: “changes in atmospheric CO2 FOLLOW changes in global air temperature. Changes in global air temperature FOLLOW changes in ocean surface temperature.”

    Conclusion: there is no “climate emergency”.

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