Essay by Eric Worrall
Fighting Climate Change is now profitable, according to The Atlantic. But that “cornucopia” of profits is coming straight from your utility bills and taxes.
Fighting Climate Change Was Costly. Now It’s Profitable.
Just how far can this climate momentum take us?
By Emma Marris
It is a good time to be in the decarbonization business in the United States. The Inflation Reduction Act—with its $374 billion cornucopia of green incentives, subsidies, and grants—was designed to entice private companies to invest in the transition away from fossil fuels. Initial reports already suggest that the IRA may be working. An analysis by American Clean Power, a lobbying group of renewable-energy companies, indicates that even just the anticipation of its bounty catalyzed $40 billion in investments and created nearly 7,000 jobs in the last few months of 2022.
Indeed, in the U.S. Joe Biden didn’t even try to pass a carbon tax and instead focused on incentives because they were more politically popular. “They went with carrots rather than sticks,” Hill said. “But sticks should eventually be part of the solution.” (Interestingly, there is one stick tucked in the IRA: a fee for emitting the powerful greenhouse gas methane, which applies only to large oil and gas facilities with significant emissions. According to the Congressional Research Service, “This charge is the first time the federal government has directly imposed a charge, fee, or tax on [greenhouse-gas] emissions.”)
But for some in the climate movement who are generally skeptical of capitalism, watching the global economy go all in on the energy transition feels deeply unsettling. These advocates are concerned that the mad scramble for decarbonization profits could create its own human-rights and environmental crises. For example, as documented in the new book Cobalt Red, by Siddharth Kara, a significant fraction of the cobalt in the world’s EVs is wrested from the earth by desperately poor miners in the Democratic Republic of Congo who breathe in toxic cobalt dust all day.
Read more: https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2023/02/inflation-reduction-act-eu-green-deal-industrial-plan/672985/
Back in the real world, even with the help of Biden’s “Inflation Reduction Act”, green profits are still lagging behind fossil fuel investments.
BP’s CEO Plays Down Renewables Push as Returns Lag
… Chief Executive Bernard Looney plans to dial back elements of the oil giant’s high-profile push into renewable energy, according to people familiar with recent discussions.
Mr. Looney has said he is disappointed in the returns from some of the oil giant’s renewable investments and plans to pursue a narrower green-energy strategy, the people said. He has told some people close to the company that BP needs to do more to convince shareholders of its strategy to maximize profits in areas where it has a competitive advantage, including its legacy oil-and-gas operations.
In some of the conversations, Mr. Looney has said he plans to place less emphasis on so-called ESG goals—a catchall term for environmental, social and governance—to help clarify that those aren’t distracting the company from its ability to deliver profits, the people said. …
Read more: https://www.wsj.com/articles/bps-ceo-plays-down-renewables-push-11675249471
Nevertheless, some companies are jumping for the bait.
Every company which takes advantage of Biden’s uncapped Inflation Reduction Act subsidies will add to the USA’s debt burden, pressure to increase taxes, and mortgage rates, as government debt subsidised spending threatens to overheat the economy still further.
What do Americans get in return for higher mortgage rates, more taxes, higher utility bills, and an even more unmanageable public debt burden?
At best, the USA gets the same electricity they already have, but more expensive and less reliable.
The USA might as well pile a trillion dollars into a heap and set fire to it, for all the “benefit” this green investment will deliver to ordinary people.
A few people will benefit. I’m guessing the billionaires who take advantage of this cheap government money will be happy. Even if their green businesses suck up all the cheap government money and, when the money dries up, default on their subsidised government loans, the personal finances of the billionaires who reap these government subsidies rarely seems to suffer financially. Being the CEO of a bankrupt business, misjudging the market, is not a crime.
Here’s looking at you, Solyndra.
A trillion dollars of government welfare for billionaires, funded from your taxes, your kid’s taxes and your grandkid’s taxes, for no benefit to anyone except the recipients. Doesn’t that just give you a warm, fuzzy feeling, deep down in your stomach?
via Watts Up With That?
February 12, 2023 at 04:12AM
2 thoughts on “Climate Activists Celebrate Your Utility Bill Pain”
Reblogged this on Calculus of Decay .