One of the themes in my Epoch Times articles is how the whole world is not following California down the primrose path to green insolvency. Californians are suffering high costs, with many leaving, for nothing.
Odisha, India Coal SurgeNow look at this story in the Financial Times (FT). Despite its liberal bias, as a business paper it has to keep its money-oriented readership reasonably informed on economics stories. So, this story is significant: “India’s dream of green energy runs into the reality of coal.” In sum, India, despite improving its green energy, needs so much coal to power its development from a poor to a middle-class country that it’s not at all inspired by Mr. Schwarzenegger, AB 32, and California.
“Coal accounts for about three-quarters of the nation’s power generation,” reports the FT of India as a whole. “While per capita energy consumption in the country, the world’s largest by population, is well below the global average, demand is expected to grow more over the coming decade than anywhere else.”
It notes Prime Minister Narenda Modi wants to build 500 gigawatts of non-fossil fuel energy production by 2030. Odisha also has announced ambitious green energy programs.
“Yet India’s energy transition is complicated by intractable problems, from the difficulty of acquiring land for solar and wind farms to deep financial distress in its power system.” Basically, in my analysis, the country doesn’t have the deep pockets of California’s long-suffering citizens to pay for the greening of India. “The authorities see the expansion of polluting industries such as steel and cement as essential to creating jobs and economic growth.
Indian DemocracyDespite some problems, India remains a democracy. That means it has to be more attentive to the desires of its people, especially economic development, than dictatorships such as its giant neighbor, Communist China. Of course, the Chinese Communist Party also has laid a path to rapid growth for more than 40 years, moving away from famine-inducing Maoism toward a mix of state and private capitalism. But current President Xi Jinping during his decade in power has greatly increased CCP meddling in the economy.
Adam Smith wrote, “There is a great deal of ruin in a nation.” And of course, even a largely free economy such as America’s involves a lot of government interference, something also increasing in recent years under President Biden. Sometimes it seems as though governments are in a race to see which can implode its own economy faster.
Australian Coal Production Also Going GangbustersIn June, the FT reported Australian giant “BHP expects the rampant expansion of India’s steel industry to boost its coal business significantly, with the world’s largest miner refocusing after being hit by a Chinese ban on Australian products.
“Around 40 percent of BHP’s metallurgical coal—used by steel mills and also known as coking coal—is now heading to India, chief commercial officer Vandita Pant told the Financial Times in an interview. The figure is up from 30 per cent in its 2019 financial year. India had become a ‘very big, big market’ for the Melbourne-based company, said Pant.
“The government in India expects to grow its steel production to 300 million tons a year by the end of the decade, from 125mn tons last year, according to officials. Steel demand has been driven by India’s rapid urbanization, which is boosting infrastructure spending and the growth of the country’s industrial sector.”
No Climate EmergencyMeanwhile, back in the real world outside California’s climate alarmism, so far more than 1,600 scientists, including two Nobel laureates, have signed the World Climate Declaration, “There Is No Climate Emergency.”
It states: “Climate science should be less political, while climate policies should be more scientific. In particular, scientists should emphasize that their modeling output is not the result of magic: computer models are human-made. What comes out is fully dependent on what theoreticians and programmers have put in: hypotheses, assumptions, relationships, parameterizations, stability constraints, etc. Unfortunately, in mainstream climate science most of this input is undeclared.”
India’s realism on economic growth and the climate shows where most of the world is heading. Its rush to coal-based growth far overshadows what puny reductions in greenhouse gases California has gained at great expense.
Instead of being in the “forefront” of such policies, as AB 32 promised, California is lagging far behind, with its impoverished residents being the foremost victims.