Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Greedy me is happy. Green me, however...

This just in from HMG: UK - Singapore air services agreement (no link - think it must be my Mac - so in full).

The UK and Singapore have initialled a landmark aviation agreement on air services.

The new liberalising deal removes all restrictions on air services between the two countries. It opens access to each country's aviation market for the other country's airlines, including flights to onward destinations in other countries, and applies state aid rules to ensure fair competition. It also finalises a new treaty that liberalises arrangements on a wide range of further issues including codesharing, fair competition, and groundhandling.

Aviation Minister Jim Fitzpatrick said:

"I am delighted by this new deal, which will be good for passengers and for the aviation industry both in the UK and Singapore. It is the most liberal agreement of its type, and I hope it will set the standard for other comparable agreements in the future. This is a major step towards extending the benefits of open aviation agreements that travellers already enjoy within Europe."

The new deal will allow the airlines of both sides to operate services between the other country and any third country. It is the first agreement that gives unfettered access to the London-US market to a non-EU or US airline.

In summary, this means it's now easier (and cheaper) all round to fly between here and Singapore? Good for visiting MaMa and Kong Kong I guess, but in that 12,000 mile trip just how much gets emitted? I'm guessing there is some trading weasel involved on targets.

Europe's 20% target needs tougher legislation

The European Renewable Energy Council (EREC) yesterday recommended that Europe's commitment to realizing 20% of energy from renewables target requires tough legislation.

As reported in Renewable Energy World, EREC calls on the European Commission to "give itself the means to impose fines on Member States if it becomes clear that they will not reach their national binding target".

"Efforts to downplay the renewable energy target by stressing the greater significance of the greenhouse gas reduction target - for instance by including nuclear energy to count towards the renewables target - need to be turned down".

Perhaps our lamentable progress in the UK so far, and the apparent attempt to play down the significance of the target, as we commented on back in August, could see our own government having to pay big fines in the coming years?

Shape of things to come?

Netherlands to launch carbon-based packaging tax

And why not? Can only help Add value to the pack to make its tax worthwhile:)

Though it is claimed that previous experience "shows that it is impossible to compare fairly all of the environmental factors of each packaging material, let alone the packaging produced from those materials".

But one has to wonder who an agreement was reached between the country's environment ministry, local authorities and industry. Whilst here....

No mention of the poor old punter, mind.

Packaging association warns against environmental taxes

How to make sense of packaging regulations

How a headline can mislead

Now when I saw this headline in today's Times - 'U-turn on showing of Al Gore climate change film in school' - I thought, oh, they have stopped schools from showing the film to their pupils, I wonder why.

So I read the article, only to discover that far from not stopping the film being shown, schools have simply been issued with new guidance about how to present the film, because some thought that the film was 'brainwashing' and 'too political'.

Now I'm all in favour of things being balanced, and of all sides and points of view being presented equitably, which the new guidance is supposedly going to assist with; but a headline like that is, to say the least, rather misrepresentative of the underlying story.

I'll bet that sometime before this day is over, someone will tell me that they've stopped showing 'An Inconvenient Truth' in schools; "it's definitely true, I saw it in The Times".

ADDENDUM (From Junkk Male) - I agree on the headline. But still have to wonder about the logic behind it all and how it has been handled, especially with many more up to date accounts soon on offer (on this very blog).

Telegraph - Al Gore's 'An Inconvenient Truth' can be shown to schools

BBC - Climate film allowed in schools

Well, they did ask

Crude awakening

Why aren't more people talking about the imminent oil supply crisis?

Possible Ans: Maybe because the political leader and the political leadership (in theory) looking ahead at how best to lead this country usually have a few other things on their minds right now (emphasis on right now, which will apply to anything that can be grabbed for a bit of spin so that anything awkward can be deferred at least until the gold-plated pension kicks in).

Thanks for the heads up on the doco. Sounds like it's well worth a scope.

No wonder the Arctic ice melt was a record

This from today's Independent reports that scientists on Melville Island, usually one of the coldest places within the Arctic circle, recorded a summer temperature of 22C. This is where the daily summer temperature rarely goes above 5C.

Now 22C is about as warm as I can remember it getting where I live in the UK this summer! Whether or not you believe global warming is man-made, man-enhanced or just simply a natural cycle, an Arctic circle temperature of 22C is pretty damned significant evidence, along with a record ice melt year, that something rather strange is happening to the climate of our little lump of planetary rock.

ADDENDUM (by Junkk Male) -

I'll be impressed that any can deny that something darned odd isn't happening!

However, just to show that the causes (enviROI+ mitigation being a given, at least on this blog) may not be so clear cut... yet: Carbon Dioxide Did Not End The Last Ice Age, Study Says

What I loved was the Google ad:

Global Warming
If you are aged 11-18 you can win a trip to see the impact first hand

That'll sort it!

Real Climate - Cosmic rays don’t die so easily - now that little lot takes some wading through!

A Greenie's home is their piggy bank

As an example of Junkk's mission statement of 'save (or make) money as well as the environment', this 'un is hard to fault: Self-built house voted greenest in Britain is sold for profit of £625,000

Good on 'em. Maybe all the consultants being hired in the gov, local gov and quango field should be at least pointed their way and asked (at tax payer's expense) to write on one side of A4 a justification how this family can do it and they couldn't join up two LEGO blocks without a 6-year consultation.

Time to renew our vows!

If the missus will have me... 'to have and to hold, for richer or greener... so long as the days can go on' - Tories use green taxes to promote marriage

' raised from the taxes would be placed in a "family fund" to ensure increases are matched pound-for-pound by reductions in the taxation burden elsewhere.'

Sounds a good match to this?: CARBON LEGACY