Well done greenies!

Because cheap gas is reducing coal demand in the US, there is “a lot of cheap coal in the marketplace”. As a result, Europe is burning more coal, while demand for gas – which emits much less CO2 than coal – is declining.

“You have this ridiculous situation where cash-strapped Europe is putting a lot of money into renewables to reduce CO2, meanwhile allowing … the power generators to take much more coal and back out gas,” he said.

“All the benefits you’re getting from the renewable energy are being counteracted by far too much coal.”

Hugely expensive AND no reduction in emissions.

You really do have to work hard to make such a ghastly cock up don\’t you. But never fear, they\’ve managed it.

5 thoughts on “Well done greenies!”

  1. Gone back to reading Hayek on people who want to make society as they want it, ignoring the market.

    What a f**k up, eh lads!

    We bankrupt ourselves building a useless supply system to achieve the unachievable and then those darstardly ultra-capitalist Yanks flog us their coal! And on top of that they are reducing their CO2 emissions (if that sorta worries you).

    Welcome to the real world. Fortunately it is beyoind your control unless you do a Stalin on us.

  2. Well, possibly. Note that this is a senior exec at Shell, and he goes on to say:

    ‘Mr Brown said the EU’s Emission Trading Scheme (ETS), designed to reduce emissions by placing a price on carbon, “doesn’t work”. “CO2 is priced at such a low level it’s meaningless,” he said. “We want a higher CO2 price. Power generators would then make the right economic decision for Europe, for gas.’

    As Tim has argued, under cap’n’trade we don’t care about the actual price. There may be a case to be made for reducing the allowances, but the price is irrelevant. And the source is completely meaningless.

    Except, obviously, to a company specialising in Gas and renewables, but not coal. Googling for a few mins seems to suggest Shell falls in this category, though I’m happy to be corrected of course.

    If true, the article collapses to “Waah, profits are down. Give us tax breaks because carbon bullshit.”

  3. I suspect (though I have no numbers) that the relative cheapness of coal (vs. gas) is primarily down to the situation that there are more “in place” systems for coal delivery.

    As gas-delivery systems emerge, the rearranged price differential will make LNG the preferred
    fuel for shipping, while coal will tend to be used close to its natural location and principally for various fractions derived by refining in situ.

    That’s my guess.

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