Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The honourable member for Morley and Rothwell is a pillock

Colin Challen MP tabled this Early Day Motion about a week ago, full of the usual eco-nonsense. Amongst other things, he discusses:
  • "the safe level of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration for a stable planet"
  • "the need to reduce this level to 350 particles per million or below"
  • "the majority of money spent on reviving the economy should be on green measures and that at least two hours of prime time television per week should be used to explain the gravity of the crisis to the public"
  • "domestic flights should be phased out by the end of 2010"
  • "that a speed limit of 55 miles per hour should be introduced"
Well, it's probably better than Eastenders, but I think the even the State Broadcaster would object to that level of indoctrination. Though, as one wag put it, "Two hours per week? So he's proposing a reduction. Excellent!".

I'll leave off the logical error or needing to reduce the "safe level", since it's obvious what was meant. Isn't it great, though, that we can be Saved if we get the level down to 350ppm? Not 351ppm, or 349ppm, of course... those are poisonous. As Harry Hill might say, "what are the chances, eh?".

That number is a political one, with little or no science behind it. Science doesn't produce neat figures, because the universe isn't neat, so where did it come from? The simple fact is that there is no critical tipping point or runaway positive feedback - if there were, at one of the many points in Earth's history when CO2 concentration was higher, they'd have been triggered and we wouldn't be here to argue about it. That's how positive feedback works: it doesn't suddenly decide to stop and go back, it goes on accelerating forever. If the change slows or reverses, the system exhibits negative feedback, end of.

So where did that number come from? The IPCC's made-up political target is 450ppm. That's a pretty big difference for anything other than sticking a wet finger in the air and guessing.

Why ban flights? Why 55mph? Some cars at 55mph produce more CO2 than others do at 70mph, so this isn't purely about the environment. If it were, you could simply ban (or punitively tax) higher emissions rates no matter how they were produced. That might actually result in innovation and job creation as people find ways to do the same stuff but better/faster/cheaper. So why create a fatuous link between speed and carbon dioxide? To buy the political support of the anti-car lobby? To push a personal agenda?

Look at the measures proposed: arbitrary and irrelevant limitations on behaviour, two hours of propaganda per week. Doesn't that sound rather like Soviet Russia? We're spied on through ubiquitous CCTV cameras and RIPA powers, can be searched without probable cause ("section 44"), can be imprisoned without charge for a month (and let's not forget that it was nearly 42 days!)... does that sound like Great Britain to you?

Or is this one of those Early Day Motions which nobody cares about and which serve only to waste taxpayers' money?

(Hat tip to Dizzy)

- KoW

Labels: , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home