The Green New Deal is the idea that – according to one adherent at least – we must spend £100 billion a year in order to change Britain to beat climate change. Well, it’s a view at least.
Yes, we can go into detail about why climate change isn’t going to be as bad as all that. That the worst projections – RCP 8.5 – are already proven not to be possible. We could argue about the best way to deal with the problem, a carbon tax rather than every loudmouth insisting upon their special plan. We could even point out the outcome of all the IPCC models which is that the solution is globalised capitalism with a carbon tax.
But instead let us just wonder at quite how heavingly stupid certain of these adherents are. Take this as an example:
OK, large scale solar is the cheap way of gaining electric power these days. Cool.
No, don’t argue that they’re not including variability or intermittency. That connection costs are summat. Let’s just take their own evidence at face value. Large scale solar is cheaper than any other form of energy generation – OK, or collection if you prefer. So, we don’t need any Green New Deal, do we? We’ve already solved the problem.
As Bjorn Lomborg pointed out a couple of decades back. If, as it had been and showed no signs of stopping, solar goes down in price by 20% a year then at some point it becomes the power source of economic choice. At which point all new power sources are solar, none anything else, and we’ve solved climate change. Things like insulating every house in the country don’t matter if heating is electric and solar. We don’t have to overthrow capitalism because an electric powered capitalism will work just fine.
So, what are the fools telling us now that solar is – as they claim at least – the cheapest source of power?
We need a Green New Deal.
No we don’t. The Green New Deal is the insistence that dumping fossil fuels will impose vast costs upon society therefore we’ve got to force the issue and invest heavily. But we’ve just done an end run around that by making solar power cheap. The cheapest even as is the insistence. If we’ve now got cheap energy the rest of the plan is a nonsense. All we’ve got to do is wait while we squeeze the last bit of use out of our extant fossil fuel infrastructure and the new installations will be solar. Because, as they say, this is now the cheap way of getting our desired ‘leccie.
The only way this won’t happen is if solar isn’t the cheapest form of electricity.
Cheap solar power entirely obviates the need to do anything else about climate change. Yea, even makes redundant the Green New Deal.