More Bad News for the Anti-Energy, Green Greed Brigade

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Recently by James Delingpole: Lying, Cheating Climate Scientists Caught Lying, Cheating Again


What do solar energy companies have in common with Second Lieutenants on the first day of the Somme? Yes, that’s right. (H/T GWPF)

In Germany, especially, the attrition rate has been amazing. According to Reuters, no fewer than 5,000 German solar companies have gone bust in the last year, shedding around 20,000 jobs.

Workers in Germany’s once booming solar energy industry face a shakeout of major proportions following declines in the price of solar panels over the past year.

Cuts in subsidies for solar energy, weaker demand for panels and fierce competition from cheaper Asian rivals are eating into what was once the world’s biggest hub for the production of solar cells, taking the shine off an industry that was effectively born in Germany.

Well boo hoo. That’s the price you pay for building an industry which should never have existed in the first place – and certainly wouldn’t have done had it not been for the heavy subsidy programme launched a decade ago by the Schroeder-led Green/Social Democrat coalition.

Whenever I make this point, the menagerie of trolls who congregate below this blog go into paroxysms of self-righteous rage, accusing me of heartlessness. No, trolls: heartless is when governments confiscate money from taxpayers and squander it on creating fake (aka "green") jobs in fake industries which go bust the second the exchequer realises it no longer has enough money to keep them on the life support machine.

And though, as I’ve said before, I have a certain degree of sympathy for the workers who joined the solar industry in good faith, imagining it had – ho ho – a bright future and would provide them with a lasting career, I have none whatsoever for those at management/investment level. If people like Tom Singh, brother of Britain’s third most-famous celebrity mathematician Simon Singh, end up getting their fingers badly burned by solar, well, caveat emptor. Presumably they must have done their due diligence. And if they did, it would have been perfectly clear that solar power is little more than a rent-seeker’s charter: it does not – and quite possibly never will – create real value; it is obviously unsuited to northern climes; it is, like most renewable energy, yet another pernicious scheme by which wealth is transferred compulsorily from the poor into the pockets of the rich and cynical.

Something similar is happening to the European carbon trading industry. In November last year, you’ll gleefully recall, the US Chicago Carbon Trading Exchange (CCX) collapsed when, in the space of two years, the carbon dioxide price fell from $7 a tonne to 7 cents a tonne. And where the US leads, Europe follows.

In early January, investors in the continent’s cap-and-trade system still had to pay some euro14 ($18.30) for the right to emit one ton of carbon dioxide into the air. By last week, the price of one emission allowance had tumbled to a meager euro6.41 – making it much cheaper to pollute and slashing the financial incentives for companies to invest in low-carbon technologies.

Analysts warn that the prospect of another recession in the debt-ridden continent, and the accompanying decline in emissions, could push prices below euro2 by the end of next month.

Meanwhile, up in the skies, the Indians, Americans and the Chinese have formed an unlikely alliance against the carbon taxes being imposed by the EU on air travel. A trade war is threatened:

China has warned the European Union to abandon its controversial carbon tax on airlines or risk provoking a global trade war. Adding weight to the warning, an industry insider told the Financial Times that the Chinese government was seriously considering measures to hit back at the EU if it insists on charging international airlines for their carbon emissions.


The US has threatened to take retaliatory action against the European Union unless Brussels drops its plan imminently to start charging any airline flying into the bloc for its carbon pollution. In a sharp escalation of tensions over Brussels’ move to bring aviation into its emissions trading system from January 1, Hilary Clinton, US Secretary of State, has written to her European Commission counterpart, Catherine Ashton, and other top commissioners, to “strongly urge” the EU to halt or suspend its plan.

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