Why does this cost money?

Air travel should be taxed more and EU funds redirected to pay for a dramatic reforesting of Britain’s countryside, the government’s climate change advisers have recommended.

Farmers should be incentivised to plant 100 million new trees a year and consumers encouraged to eat a fifth less lamb, beef and dairy to cut sheep and cattle grazing by 10 per cent, the Committee on Climate Change has said.

If you don’t graze – or plough or anything else – land then it turns to forest. Assuming that the land is suitable for forest in the first place. The cost of creating a forest in a pace where a forest wants to be is therefore nothing.

Equally, we all eating less meat costs less, not more. So, why the insistence that the change will cost anything?

19 thoughts on “Why does this cost money?”

  1. The government needs to change its advisors. Seriously.

    This is what is going to exasperate everybody who voted for Bojo.

    I don’t understand this blind spot.

  2. Eat more venison! Deer eat the saplings and if they can get into gardens will demolish every bit of crabapple tree that is tender.

  3. Questions that we can answer No. 4935

    “Why does this cost money?”

    Because climate change is a money making scam. Next.

  4. Why would/should the EU pay towards projects in the UK? Have the government’s climate change advisers got their heads so far up their own carbon discharge facilities that they haven’t registered Brexit?

  5. This is the same nonsense that Madsen Pirie seems to have contracted from Moonbat over the artificial food from sunlight thing. Rewilding.
    Stop & think how the carbon cycle actually works.
    Pretty well every bit of ground, given a water supply, will grow plants. And pretty well every bit of ground with a water supply does grow plants. Unless you concrete it over or spray herbicide. All green plants use chlorophyll to utilise solar energy to transform CO² + H²O+ few trace elements into more plant with much the same sort of efficiency. Result of a few billion years of competitive evolution. Mass thereof depending on the input of energy & raw materials.
    And pretty well everything gets eaten by something. Or the planet would be miles deep in dead plant. But the digestive system of animals can’t break down cellulose, unaided. All animals eat plants have bacteria in their guts, aid the process. Ants or antelopes. Animals are just the container enables the bacteria to get around. All the bacteria break the cellulose down using the same process producing the same by-products.
    So it really doesn’t matter what you grow on land & what eats it, the outcome’s much the same. In the long term, zero less coal & oil deposits. The only advantage to trees is they briefly tie up some carbon in wood for a few years.*
    But there is another way of sequestering carbon that agriculture’s very good at. In carbon rich soils. Anyone who digs holes knows this. Natural land, the soil’s very thin. Under forest, barely inches. Not much more under grasslands. Ploughed, farmed land, the soil can go down feet. Black soil full of carbon. Go visit your local Victorian/Edwardian park. Those paths were originally laid proud of the natural surface to enable the rain to run off. Didn’t even take ploughing. A century of mowing the lawns & the paths are generally below the level of the turf. A foot or more of carbon rich soil can be a ton of carbon/m³.
    Nature takes a very long time to create soils. Agriculture’s another another word for optimising plant growth & the creation of soils.

    *Our farmer, Jim, could probably tell you what the annual hay crop would be off an acre of land & how much timber the same area forested would produce. Doubt if there’s much difference in the mass, over time. But there’s probably more use in the hay than the timber. It’ll all end up in the same place, eventually.

  6. Diversity. Rewilding encourages diversity of wildlife. Yeah. In the very short term. Go look at Epping forest if you’re near London. Original climax forest. Bugger all but oak trees & a bit of holly, in the bits haven’t been managed & felled. The wildlife restricted to what lives off oak trees & what eats them. Lot of dead leaves. And soil about 2 inches deep. How nature works. The plant best suited to the conditions prospers & crowds everything else out.

  7. Clearly you haven’t been keeping up with events dear boy. Perhaps you should take the time to go to Davos.

    It has to be done immediately, which will cost money. We can’t wait for nature.

    Every year we wait something like 500m people are predicted to die and in twenty years there be none of us left.

    The unspeakable Lord Deben should be composted today for the sake of the environment.

  8. How much grass grows per year is a bit of a ‘how long is a piece of string’ question. If its a very short term Italian rye grass ley then you can get 5-7 tonnes of dry matter per acre per year. But that only produces at that rate for 2-3 years then loses vigour and has to be ploughed up and replanted. Whereas long term grass leys can produce 1-3 tonnes of dry matter per year virtually indefinitely, the yield being largely down to weather conditions – if its wet and warm grass grows far better. I have hay fields that have been grass since the early 1800s and they still produce 2 tonne/acre of hay per year, if you graze sheep on them in the winter to manure them a bit.

    A bit of googling suggests that short rotation coppice (very fast growing willows and poplars) can produce 4-5 tonnes of dried wood per acre per year. But ordinary trees would be nowhere near that, because a) they’re slower growing, and b) growth slows over time as the tree gets bigger. A mature oak will hardly be adding any mass at all, and taking up a fairly large area too.

    It seems that politicians have alighted on the ‘lets plant trees’ idea because it sounds like such a good idea – who is against trees, right? Completely ignoring that in the long run its going to bugger all to reduce over all carbon emissions – every tree that grows will eventually return its carbon to the air somehow, either by being burned or rotting.

  9. Incidentally, no farmer (or landowner) with half a brain is going to fall into the ‘here’s some money to plant trees’ government scam. Everyone knows that once you’ve planted trees thats it, you can never remove them, they are protected in law once they get larger than 3″ stems, and you can only cut them down if you agree to replant afterwards. So if you take money to plant trees on open farmland and maintain them for X years, once the X years are up you have an asset worth far less than it was (forest land is worth half that of open farmland) and have no annual income either, as there’s not much you can do with a forest except cut it down once every 50 years or so.

    There have been forestry grants to plant trees for 30+ years (still available now) and no-one much bothers with them because all the unproductive bits have been planted and people have cottoned on to the scam. The only way serious amounts of farmland is going to be turned over to trees is if the State buys it for market price and plants trees itself. Farmers aren’t going to do it.

  10. Jim – how much wooden furniture, wooden beams, wooden floorboards etc are rotting or on fire in your house?
    Any particular reason that wood must burn or rot?
    The wooden beams above me are 60 years old. The beams and floorboards at my parents house are over a hundred years old.
    There is a place I’ve been to in a nearby town with most of the wood being 300+ years old.

    Humans find uses for wood besides burning it.

  11. “Humans find uses for wood besides burning it.”

    But not much. The vast majority of timber ends up burned or rotted to nothing. The amount that gets ‘locked’ up inside buildings is a tiny fraction of the overall annual production.

  12. The money won’t be used for planting trees, it will pay for the new quango intended to “manage” the planting of trees, six figure salaries for those in charge, generous pensions, new offices, computers, iPads, shiny new electric vehicles to drive around in, etc.

  13. Thanx Jim. Particularly for the info on subsidies for tree planting. So government will say “Plant a billion trees!” And landowners will say “Not on me bit, yer bloody won’t! Ferkoff.”
    @ Martin
    Those fast growing poplars & willows aren’t actually used for anything apart from firewood. They’re not construction wood & not much good for furniture. UK housebuilding mostly use pine etc. French, much more oak. But France is twice the size of the UK with much more land under trees, to start with.

    Reckon Silverite’s dead on with the business plan.

  14. A local common is in the process of being returned to woodland. There’s a volunteer drive every year to cut down saplings to staunch the process but still- nature seems to be winning. That job was previously done by commoners exercising their grazing rights, but no one does that anymore. In my experience various societies that exist for the protection of flora and fauna much prefer downland, heathland, marshland even farmland (with hedgerows) to woodland.

    p,s, sweet chestnut is good for coppacing too, grows like bamboo.

  15. @bloke in spain January 23, 2020 at 9:50 am


    From a different end: did all those BC, Roman, Medieval etc walls/buildings we find in archaeologic digs sink? Baldric should have a chat with these taxpayer funded ‘advisors’ after Cummings sacks them.


    +1 thanks

    @Martin January 23, 2020 at 11:08 am

    Given we’re burning wood, making paper, loo rolls, chipping & composting wood etc we have more than enough timber for building. Take the roof off and see how long those beams last.

    Buildings are a wood preservation museum



    @I sneeze in threes

    No. Coal & oil pre-date cellulose eating bacteria. Peat maybe – Jim?

  16. One of the local parks has a lake that they have to regularly dredge, the very interesting information board points out that it would if left to nature become stilted before becoming a marsh and eventually the forest would take it over.
    Apparently a well known natural cycle for shallow lakes created by depressions from glaciers during the last ice age where the inflow/outflow is too slow to maintain the lake.
    Funnily enough none of the local greenies complain about this unnatural intervention in the ecological cycle

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