Gareth Morgan – impressive talk, but questions remain

We went along to hear Gareth Morgan last night. We aren’t the type to go to a finance talk, so it wasn’t that. He is touring the country, talking about his trip to Antarctica, and raising money fro a pest-eradication programme on a sub-Antarctic island.

I was prepared to ask the obvious question: how does he justify, cranially, his involvement in growth economics, with his conservation efforts.

I didn’t. The man spoke too sincerely, and too thoughtfully, for that to be a valid question. A case of someone being too proactive, to knock. He has a better grasp of Climate Science, than anyone outside the science profession; with the perhaps exception of Gwynne Dyer. His graphic of the warming Southern Ocean (the temperature differential is much bigger at the poles) was irrefutable. Continue reading

Enjoy this but…..

make sure nobody’s watching you……

http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2012-07-10/peak-oil-oppositional-disorder-neurosis-or-psychosis

For ‘Stephen Harper’ read: Steven Joyce. For Canada, New Zealand.

http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2012-07-06/oh-canada-government%E2%80%99s-broad-assault-environment

A good wee read

http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2012-07-07/resilience-through-simplification-revisiting-tainters-theory-collapse-part-1

Kim Hill – brave. Guy McPherson. Brave too. Radionz Saturday 11.05

Well done Kim Hill. Easily the smartest Journo in the country, and the only one going anywhere near the truth of what is hitting us.

McPherson could be Jennie and I. No difference = or bugger-all – when you work it out. Like Orlov, he understands Jevons:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jevons_paradox

very well, and suggests that a fast crash will leave more chance for those who follow. Some folk complained that Hill chopped-in too often – but they will be those who understand, and who wanted to listen to one of their own kind. Interviewing – from a basis of ‘extracting the truth’ – needs to ask the hard questions, and attempt the trip-up. His reply re flying (you used fossil fuels to get here) was classic. How can we have a country being removed from the truth (NIWA / Lauder silencing / Steven Joyce / Tertiary ‘funding’) and yet there is the information, on National Radio.

Clearly, the current Govt can’t have such comments going mainstream – imaging the consternation: “You mean my mortgage won’t be repaid, my investments will be worth progressively less, and I won’t get a pension?”  Watch for National Ratio to get knobbled soon. Can’t have this truth stuff getting about, now, can we?

 

The archdruid – usually good, this is superb

http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.co.nz/

Here are a couple of excerpts:

“the Limits to Growth team avoided the fixation on detail that so often blinds people to systems behavior on the broad scale. Within the simplified model that resulted, it became obvious that limitless growth on a finite planet engenders countervailing processes that tend to restore the original state of the system. It became just as obvious that the most important of those processes was the simple fact that in any environment with finite resources and a finite capacity to absorb pollution, the costs of growth would eventually rise faster than the benefits, and force the global economy to its knees”.

“The one exception is the financial sector, since increasing the amount of paper value produced by purely financial transactions involves no additional capital, resources, and labor—a derivative worth ten million dollars costs no more to produce, in terms of real inputs, than one worth ten thousand, or for that matter ten cents. Thus financial transactions increasingly become the only reliable source of profit in an otherwise faltering economy, and the explosive expansion of abstract paper wealth masks the contraction of real wealth”.

 

Well worth the read – as he so often is.

Rio – a failure

Here are a couple of comments on what came out of Rio. I can’t put it better, so won’t!

http://www.odt.co.nz/opinion/opinion/214561/ecocide-law-waits-severe-damage

http://www.monbiot.com/2012/06/22/how-%E2%80%9Csustainability%E2%80%9D-became-%E2%80%9Csustained-growth%E2%80%9D/

Read ’em both and weep. I long ago realised that fighting environmental action was Horatio going backwards on the bridge. If we didn’t address the big issues, the actions themselves were pointless. This (old, low def but enthralling still) video sets the big scene:

http://www.justwondering.co.nz/the-consequences-of-growth/

As you get to hear, if we don’t address population and consumption (total and per-head) then it’s a waste of time ‘saving’ anything.  The saver, funnily enough, may well be that the growth-based fiscal system can’t cope with permanent decline (no underwrite of interest and profit) and will crash – taking with it much of the mechanism for ‘growth’. Already we are getting folk commenting that the natural interest rate should be below zero. Interesting times, joke intended…..