2016: the greatest year ever

Let us begin with poverty. At the time, 2015 was an astonishing year. The global target had been to cut extreme poverty in half from the 1990 level, which was 37%. The actual level fell below 10% for the first time in history: little more than a quarter of the 1990 level. This was a […]

Is Trump rejecting climate denial?

It has become depressingly ordinary for Republican politicians to enter a denial phase in any discussion of climate change. This both undermines any attempt to deal with this issue, but also to discuss it. People who pretend the climate isn’t changing will refuse to discuss how best to address the issue and it allows liberals […]

Unbelievable folly: the ‘lose-lose’ EU climate policy

… I’d like to start by addressing two of the clichés — indeed the canards — that invariably come up in any debate about the EU and the environment. The first is: “We have to thank the EU for clean beaches” … or for employment rights, or health and safety, or whatever. Maybe I can […]

We’re not cutting emissions .. we’re just exporting them

I’ve spent best part of ten years arguing against the theory of man-made climate change – and had great fun doing so.  There are powerful arguments to say that mankind has little impact on climate – not least the obvious point that the slight warming over the last hundred years is exactly comparable to repeated […]

Should we welcome synthetic meat?

The cultivation of crops and the domestication of animals were two of the breakthrough technologies for our species. They marked the move from hunter-gatherers to settled and nomadic communities. Other breakthroughs – the bucket and the plow, for example, which enabled farmers to produce surplus, and thus for some people to be something other than […]

Does energy independence matter?

Are there more Arab countries among the top ten oil producers or North American countries? This is a trick question, of course, to which there is no correct answer, since there are three of each: Saudi Arabia (2nd), Iraq (7th) and the United Arab Emirates (8th) on the one hand and the US (3rd) Canada […]

Why Britain’s Farmers should back UKIP

In the course of my work in the East Midlands, I meet quite a lot of farmers, and I find that generally speaking they tend to support UKIP’s broad objectives.  They, like the rest of us, think we’d be better off governing ourselves as an independent country.  But they have one big hang-up.  Their payments […]

Electricity Prices on the Political Agenda

Both Australia and Germany have just held national elections, where conservatives have won in both cases. During those elections electricity prices surfaced as a hot topic, where the public opinion clearly favoured lowering the electricity price. And so the topic was debated extensively. In the case of Australia the price is $ 0,29/kWh, a relatively […]

A frack fan’s defense manual

The US shale gas boom made a heavy impact on the world as it made gas much more abundant and as a consequence of that prices fell. That brought shale gas into the spotlight of the media and thus onto the political stage, where the method to extract it from the underground, fracking, has become […]

What did the Party Conferences say about energy?

So the Party Conference season is over.  The politicians and the lobbyists (and the few die-hard party members) have gone home.  A great number of promises have been made.  Call me a cynic if you will, but I expect that few will be kept. As UKIP’s Spokesman on Energy, I was naturally interested to hear […]