A recent report suggests government support for wind and solar ‘farms’ will cost jobs.
WHAT makes the imposition of the outrageous Gillard-Greens carbon tax such a bizarre episode in Australian taxation history is that its legitimacy rests on several wilful untruths.
Leading the way is Julia Gillard’s pre-election pronouncement that “There will be no carbon tax under the government I lead.”
Who recalls Laborites claiming ad nauseam in the late 1990s and early 2000s that John Howard dishonoured an election promise by introducing the GST, the revenues from which are distributed among state governments?
Although State Scene isn’t a fan of the centralist Howard years, there’s a major problem with that interminably repeated allegation.
Mr Howard went into the 1996 election promising no GST during his first term and he honoured that undertaking.
The GST came after the 1998 election at which he said he’d move on bringing in such a tax.
Not so Ms Gillard.
“There will be no carbon tax under the government I lead”, she said before election day 2010.
But she’s imposing a CO2 tax two years before election 2013.
What does that make her?
Where are all those who were so fired-up at the alleged Howard deception that never was?
They’re nowhere to be seen because they know Labor’s cast-iron party discipline hovers over them.
They dare not object because they’d lose party endorsement for election 2013 and face expulsion.
Are there any other porkies about?
Try this one.
Ms Gillard and all her Labor-Greens comrades constantly refer to the ‘carbon price’.
Well, whenever uttering those words they’re telling two porkies in one breath.
They are that they’re not taxing carbon but CO2 gas.
Carbon is a solid, somewhat like chimney soot.
CO2 is a colourless gas that, whenever we exhale, 30,000 parts per million rush up our throat, past our teeth, tongue and lips.
And as this column has so often stated, CO2 is, as said in the bush, good tucker for forests, woodlands, grain fields, veggie patches, and the world’s grasslands.
Future historians will be baffled trying to comprehend why early this century a group calling itself ‘Greens’ launched a vicious nationwide hatred and propaganda campaign against colourless CO2, erroneously dubbing it carbon, and seeking to restrict its output.
If the erroneously called Greens were really Greens, not anti-green, which is what they are, they’d be campaigning for more CO2 emissions since that would help boost revegetation across forests, woodlands and grasslands worldwide.
Among other things it would make life for animals, including endangered birds and tiny species, far easier since they’d have access to ever more and healthier ground and tree cover.
Instead our rabid anti-Greens, who have deceptively named themselves Greens, seek to thwart tree, grass and grain growth.
Another of Gillard-led Labor’s porky pies is the wilful misuse of the word ‘pollutant’ to deliberately mislead people and justify their unnecessary burdensome CO2 tax.
They’re forever claiming CO2 is a pollutant whereas, as pointed out, it’s an essential plant life nutrient.
If its concentration ever slumps below 150ppm, all plant life would shut down and mother earth would become lifeless like the moon.
Never before have I encountered such widespread wilful deception in the promotion and justification of a public policy.
The CO2 tax campaign has stooped so low by twisting language via word manipulation that George Orwell, who so brilliantly warned against such deception in his essay ‘Politics and the English Language’, would be utterly flabbergasted.
But blatant misuse of language is only the beginning of our problems with the bizarre CO2 tax.
This column recently highlighted that the state’s major base-load electricity provider, Verve Energy, is set to be slugged $200 million annually to meet this added impost.
Also, maintenance costs of generators will rise because Verve must rev-up and decelerate generators so that fluctuating unreliable wind and solar generated electricity can be infused into the state’s power grid.
Such generator trashing will be costly.
Treasurer Wayne Swan and Greens leader Bob Brown instead claim that what they’re calling clean and green energy will creates more jobs.
What precisely is the situation with these so-called green jobs?
The best place to go for an answer is a 2009 study at King Juan Carlos University, Madrid, titled ‘Study of the Effects on Employment of Public Aid to Renewable Energy Sources’, by Gabriel Calzada Alvarez, Raquel Merino Jara, and Juan Ramón Rallo Julián.
State Scene urges that this investigation be carefully read at: www.juandemariana.org/pdf/090327-employment-public-aid-renewable.pdf for what one learns is the opposite of what Messrs Swan and Brown contend.
So-called wind and solar energy ‘farms’ and roof-top panels are significant job-killers.
Unfortunately that rarely reported fact isn’t highlighted by the Tony Abbott-led opposition, despite billions of dollars set to be outlaid on more of these wasteful ‘farms’ by Canberra.
The Spanish report says such ‘farms’ became a European-wide craze to fund so-called ‘green jobs’ after 1997. This meant the researchers had figures to analyse from a full decade of operations.
It said subsidising policies and grants supporting highly uneconomic solar and wind-generated electricity, that’s now also heavily promoted across Australia, had, in Spain, been “terribly economically counter-productive”.
It added: “The study’s results demonstrate how such ‘green jobs’ policy clearly hinders Spain’s way out of the current economic crisis.”
The investigation found that, for every renewable energy job the Spanish government had bankrolled, one could “expect a loss of at least 2.2 jobs on average, or about nine jobs lost for every four created, to which we have to add those jobs that non-subsidised investments with the same resources would have created”.
“Despite its hyper-aggressive (expensive and extensive) ‘green jobs’ policies, it appears that Spain ... has created a surprisingly low number of jobs, two-thirds of which came in construction, fabrication and installation, one quarter in administrative positions, marketing and projects engineering, and just one out of 10 jobs has been created at the more permanent level of actual operation and maintenance of the renewable sources of electricity,” the report said.
“This came at great financial cost as well as cost in terms of jobs destroyed elsewhere in the economy.
“The study calculates that since 2000 Spain spent €571,138 [$A819,000] to create each ‘green job’, including subsidies of more than €1 million [$A1.43 million] per wind industry job.
“The study calculates that the programs creating those jobs also resulted in the destruction of nearly 110,500 jobs elsewhere in the economy, or 2.2 jobs destroyed for every ‘green job’ created.
“Principally, the high cost of electricity affects costs of production and employment levels in metallurgy, non-metallic mining and food-processing, beverage and tobacco industries.
“Each ‘green’ megawatt installed destroys 5.28 jobs on average elsewhere in the economy.”
There’s no law of physics or accounting that suggests Australia’s situation is any different.
If Messrs Swan and Brown or any of their rabid disciples can find such laws this columnist will be the first to jump aboard their crazy bandwagon to wave placards and shout-out for ever more green energy.
But on condition I’m allowed to continue calling CO2 precisely that, not carbon, and say it’s a nutrient, not a pollutant.
In other words, no more lying.