From the TUC

Clean Coal and George Monbiot: enough with the conspiracy theories

23 Apr 2009, by Guest in Environment

George Monbiot has laid into the Government’s plans for clean coal plants announced today accusing it of a cynical decision resulting from lobbying by the energy generation industry. Maybe George Monbiot should consider the possibility that there is actually a reasonable case for clean coal plants as a way to cut emissions and the Government agrees with that.  It’s not a watertight case but then there isn’t a watertight case for reliance on renewables alone or any particular mix of sources either.  

I accept that Monbiot knows a vast amount about the climate debate and that he has done a great deal to assert the cause but that doesn’t mean he is right on everything.  If someone disagrees with him it might not be because they have retreated from rationality towards venality. The Budget yesterday announced money and support for the offshore wind industry but I assume George thinks this is the result of good green common sense rather than any pressure from the renewables industry (or the energy industry itself which has quite an investment in renewables now anyway).

In truth, if the Government was responding only to pressure from industry they would probably have taken this decision years ago.  The reason it has happened now has more to do with a major shift in Government thinking towards the acceptance that the state will have to intervene and stump up some of the cash for the shift to a low carbon economy.

By the way, if you read Monbiot’s article, do follow the link to “the Guardian’s new revelations” about the Government’s collusion with the energy industry.  I thought it would be an article about secret policy breakfasts and jobs for civil servants on energy company boards.  In fact, it’s about information being passed to E.ON about the climate camp protest outside their Kingsnorth power plant.  Hardly convincing.

3 Responses to Clean Coal and George Monbiot: enough with the conspiracy theories

  1. Rowan Davies
    Apr 23rd 2009, 7:25 pm

    Do you not find it shocking that the government is encouraging the police to share information with a private company? I think it justifies the ‘collusion’ tag. The Kingsnorth protesters are part of an honourable tradition of non-violent protest – something that the government and police seem to find illegitimate these days.

  2. Adam Lent

    Apr 23rd 2009, 8:58 pm

    Maybe but what I meant is is that the article Monbiot links to provides no proof of collusion on policy issues.

  3. Robert
    Apr 24th 2009, 7:15 am

    And of course we import the coal god forgive anyone would want to dig the stuff here, well yes they would in massive big open cast mines, then we can have nice big holes to fill with rubbish after wards so making more profits for the companies.