Today seems to be the day for car-crash media, so let us move on from Charlie Sheen and cross over to Australia, where they are having something of a debate about whether to introduce a cap and trade carbon Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), similar to the one that has lined the pockets of government bureaucrats and transnational corporations in Europe.
Generally speaking, the Aussies are not overly keen on making everything more expensive on the unproven threat of Armaggeddon: they are also up in arms about the fact that the government is about to spend millions of Australian tax dollars on a
All of this you can hear in this Australian radio show, broadcast on the 9th of March and featuring Andrew Bolt.
The highlight (and I use that word advisedly), however, is the interview with a British woman called Jill Duggan.
You probably haven't heard of Jill Duggan before, but she is an EU apparatchick who is responsible, amongst other things, for Britain's ETS.
And she gets absolutely slapped, politely but repeatedly. I have an MP3 [2MB] of the relevant section, thanks to His Ecclesiastical Eminence, who describes Duggan's performance thusly...
The Australians who are conducting the interview are worried that perhaps an ETS is not such a good idea.
Having heard the interview you will understand why they feel this way—Duggan's performance is truly catastrophic, with our the woman from Whitehall apparently unable to quantify either the costs or the benefits of the scheme she runs. It's hilarious, toe-curling and utterly compelling.
These, ladies and gentlemen, are the Rolls Royce minds that run the UK these days.
Just in case you are unwilling or unable to listen to this epic failure from this idiot, thieving EU moron, via The Englishman, you can read the transcript of the whole interview in Andrew Bolt's Herald Sun column—I have reproduced some of the best bits below...
Jill Duggan is from the European Commission's Directorate General of Climate Action. She is the EC's National Expert on Carbon Markets and Climate Change. She was head of Britain's International Emissions Trading. She is in Australia to tell us how good Europe's emission trading system is and why we should do something similar [PDF].
No one, therefore, should better know the answers to the two most basic questions about this huge scheme. The cost? The effect?.
Well, you might think that, Andrew, but obviously you haven't had many dealings with the EU before: as Strange Stuff has eloquently pointed out, the EU doesn't give two shits about cost (after all, it's not as though the EU Commission have to answer to the electorate, member governments or anyone else, for that matter) and nothing is going to stop them carrying out batshit insane ideas regardless of whether those policies will achieve the stated aims or simply beggar everyone in Europe.
Andrew Bolt: Can I just ask; your target is to cut Europe's emissions by 20% by 2020?
Jill Duggan: Yes.
AB: Can you tell me how much—to the nearest billions—is that going to cost Europe do you think?
JD: No, I can't tell you but I do know that the modelling shows that it's cheaper to start earlier rather than later, so it's cheaper to do it now rather than put off action.
AB: Right. You wouldn't quarrel with Professor Richard Tol—who's not a climate sceptic—but is professor at the Economic and Social Research Institute in Dublin? He values it at about $250 billion. You wouldn't quarrel with that?
JD: I probably would actually. I mean, I don't know. It's very, very difficult to quantify. You get different changes, don't you? And one of the things that's happening in Europe now is that many governments—such as the UK government and the German government—would like the targets to be tougher because they see it as a real stimulus to the economy.
AB: Right. Well you don't know but you think it isn't $250 billion.
JD: I think you could get lots of different academics coming up with lots of different figures.
AB: That's right. You don't know but that's the figure that I've got in front of me. For that investment. Or for whatever the investment is. What's your estimation of how much—because the object ultimately of course is to lower the world's temperatures—what sort of temperature reduction do you imagine from that kind of investment?
JD: Well, what we do know is that to have an evens chance of keeping temperature increases globally to 2°C—so that's increases—you've got to reduce emissions globally by 50% by 2050.
AB: Yes, I accept that, but from the $250 billion—or whatever you think the figure is—what do you think Europe can achieve with this 20% reduction in terms of cutting the world's temperature? Because that's, in fact, what's necessary. What do you think the temperature reduction will be?
JD: Well, obviously, Europe accounts for 14% of global emissions. It's 500 or 550 million people. On its own it cannot do that. That is absolutely clear.
AB: Have you got a figure in your mind? You don't know the cost. Do you know the result?
JD: I don't have a cost figure in my mind. Nor, one thing I do know, obviously, is that Europe acting alone will not solve this problem alone.
AB: So if I put a figure to you—I find it odd that you don't know the cost and you don't know the outcome—would you quarrel with this assessment: that by 2100—if you go your way and if you're successful—the world's temperatures will fall by 0.05°C? Would you agree with that?
JD: Sorry, can you just pass that by me again? You're saying that if Europe acts alone?
AB: If just Europe alone—for this massive investment—will lower the world's temperature with this 20% target (if it sustains that until the end of this century) by 0.05°C. Would you quarrel with that?
JD: Well, I think the climate science would not be that precise. Would it?
AB: Ah, no, actually it is, Jill. You see this is what I'm curious about; that you're in charge of a massive program to re-jig an economy. You don't know what it costs. And you don't know what it'll achieve.
Let me just underline this point for you: Jill Duggan—the arsehole who is theoretically in charge of this enormously expensive ETS programme—does not know what the costs are, nor the supposed benefits.
That's a pretty stunning admission, isn't it?
After all, regardless of whether one believes in the whole catastrophic anthropogenic climate change theory (CACC), surely any steps that we do or do not take should be properly assessed?
Let's imagine that CACC is real and we need to act: well, given that premise, we need whatever we do to be effective, and to be as low cost as possible. And we should do that by means of a quantifiable cost-benefit analysis (CBA). Without an effective CBA, you could be pissing many billions of pounds up the wall whilst absolutely not achieving your aims at all.
Which is, of course, precisely what has happened with the EU ETS.
But it gets worse (believe it or not)...
JD: Well, I think you can look at lots of modelling which will come up with lots of different costs.
AB: Well what's your modelling? That's the one that everyone's quoting. What's your modelling?
JD: Well, ah, ah. Let me talk about what we have done in Europe and what we have seen as the benefits. In Europe, in Germany you could look at, there's over a million new jobs that have been created by tackling climate change, by putting in place climate policies. In the UK there's many hundreds of thousand of jobs.
Jill, Jill, Jill: even if this were true—and I know that Timmy will be proud of me for pointing this out—jobs are a COST not a fucking benefit, you moron.
But, unfortunately for Jill, it is not true, as Andrew Bolt is swift to point out.
AB: Actually, that's not right, is it? I just saw research. Did you see this? It came last week. Verso Economics saying that, for example, in Scotland the investment in green power has cost 3.7 jobs for every one green job created [BBC link inserted by me—DK]. And there are similar figures; I'm looking at Italy here, Germany, Spain. They're all the same figures.
One can almost hear darling Jill physically reeling as she is slapped down once again. But she's got her script and she's going to stick to it... [Emphasis mine.]
JD: They're not all the same figures. You can pick figures to support any argument. What I'm saying is that the experience in Europe is we've done things well and we've had some things which we wish we'd done differently at the start. The impact on the economy has been that it has stimulated growth in jobs that will last. It's not been noticeable in the impact on households. Not compared to gas and oil prices and the impact that they have on households. And that we actually have governments in Europe including the UK, Germany and France who are asking for tougher targets now. Now governments aren't in the business of trying to undermine their economies. They want their economies to grow. If the UK, Germany and France did not believe that this was good for their economies and good for the planet they would not be asking for tougher targets.
Really? Andrew Bolt is sceptical (to put it mildly) and comes in for the kill—using a brilliant tone of naive wonder...
AB: I wish I could believe that. We’re talking about a region—Europe—that has unemployment at 10% and a growth forecast this year of 1.6%. I don’t know what we could learn from Europe actually.
Boom! If Jill hadn't been struggling before—and she was—she could hardly bounce back from that. And sure enough, she just wibbles on about nothing until she is unceremoniously cut off.
But Jill Duggan's statesmanlike assurance delighted at least one listener, who was moved to call in...
Paul: Where do I donate money to get this interview published? Can it be an advert? Can it be run during "An Inconvenient Truth"? Please, I’m praying, where do I give money?
Let us hope that Jill Duggan realises that she is now an international laughing stock and slinks quietly away to cry in her room. Maybe she will even be moved to slit her wrists in a warm bath.
Do go and listen to the interview [2MB]—listen out particularly for the bit where poor Jill is rendered utterly speechless—and reflect on the major point here: this woman and her EU colleagues have committed the people of Europe to a colossally expensive programme without, apparently, doing any sort of cost-benefit analysis.
Or, if they have done a CBA, they are so incompetent that have sent someone who doesn't know those figures to lecture Australians about how wonderful this ET scheme is.
It would be funny if it wasn't costing us billions of pounds...