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It’s All Our Fault!!

January 7, 2015
tags: ,

By Paul Homewood  


Reportage: China Coal Boom: China Coal Pollution


From the “It’s All Our Fault Department”


Whenever there is a debate about the ever increasing emissions of CO2 in China, there is usually some comment like this one at Euan Mears’ site yesterday:





In other words, Chinese emissions are all the fault of us planet hating, greedy, capitalist, consumerist westerners.

A quick look at CDIAC’s figures for CO2 emissions shows that this argument is largely nonsense.





Since 2000, emissions in the EU and US have fallen by 246 Mt/C a year, while China and India’s have increased by 2127 Mt.

While it can be argued that a small part of the latters’ increased emissions have offset our savings, clearly the vast bulk have instead gone into building up their own infrastructure, industries and economies.

And, of course, they have every right to do so, in order to provide their citizens with a better life.  

I just wish that guilt ridden westerners would not blame us all for it. 

  1. January 7, 2015 9:12 am

    I never cease to be amazed by the sheer ignorance of so many CAGW adherents

    • 1saveenergy permalink
      January 7, 2015 7:05 pm

      Why ??? Isn’t sheer ignorance a pre-requisite for CAGW

  2. January 7, 2015 9:12 am

    I just wish that guilt ridden westerners would not blame us all for it.

    I think you’ll find that Graeme no3, like myself and Roger do not see CO2 emissions as a serious threat, hence there is nothing to feel guilty about. But if the OECD is going to blow its trumpet about reducing emissions I certainly believe that embedded energy in imported and exported goods should be taken into account. Don’t you?

    You have in fact got this post totally arse about face since the comment is about not blaming everything on China.

    And, of course, they have every right to do so, in order to provide their citizens with a better life.

    Which is a point you evidently agree with.

    You make some reasonable arguments about the scale of the embedded CO2 problem that are interesting. It would be customary to simply have made this point in reply to Graeme no3 in comments!

  3. January 7, 2015 10:16 am

    Paul, when I point out how much more China is pumping out than the US, people bring up ‘per capita.’ I don’t think they take into account that a great deal of our ‘consumption’ of resources, goes into products a lot of other nations need- and who else is going to provide those products? Especially FOOD.

  4. January 7, 2015 12:49 pm

    It seems entirely reasonable of Graeme No.3/Euan to point out that, by shutting down manufacturing capability in Europe (by carbon taxes pushing up electricity prices), but continuing to buy the goods produced in countries which don’t follow the same ruinous policies, the West is outsourcing its CO2 production and achieving effectively nothing in terms of carbon reductions.

  5. January 7, 2015 1:54 pm

    Reblogged this on and commented:
    Pretty much destroys the “export emissions to China” argument. Also, of you look at emissions on a MT per capita basis, UK 7.9, China 6.2. Oil producing countries are much higher.

    • January 7, 2015 3:51 pm

      If you look at emissions on a per capital basis in Haiti, they’re top of the world for ecological carbon footprint. They live in hovels, and at one time, perhaps even now, were literally eating dirt. Carbon foot print is not a measure of anything except perhaps abject poverty. China has far more poverty than England, so this is in keeping with your example. What “carbon footprint” means is “how poor are your people?”. Interesting way to measure human behaviour—whoever is the abject poorest wins the save the earth prize.

  6. Bloke down the pub permalink
    January 7, 2015 2:38 pm

    Like previous commenters, I think you may have been a tad unfair on Graeme no.3. It’s certainly pointless to claim that the EU has reduced its’ CO₂ emissions when it has in fact just exported them. It is also likely that the discrepancy between EU and US reductions and Chinese increases, is in part due to lower efficiency, which will cause an net increase in emissions. The road to environmental hell is paved with green intentions.

  7. markwbell permalink
    January 7, 2015 3:44 pm

    While on the subject of social justice, I thought you would like to see what the bright lights in the faculty of ‘social justice and peace studies’ at a leading (?) Canadian university pump out:

    “Re: A stock buyer’s guide for 2015: Olive, Jan. 2

    David Olive’s column is, quite frankly, a moral outrage. Mr. Olive’s top pick is the purchase of shares of Suncor, which he praises as the “world’s oldest oilsands producer.” But advocating the tar sands as the best possible investment at a time when the world approaches the brink of climate catastrophe is simply horrendous.
    The fact that his second choice is investment in an airline – one of the most polluting industries in the whole economy merely adds bile to the reader’s nausea.
    His recommendations are the ethical equivalent of encouraging us to invest in Germany’s BMW in 1938 or South Africa’s DeBeers in 1980.
    Perhaps Mr. Olive is not aware of the scientific consensus – that left unchecked, climate change will kill approximately 200 million people this century, more than both world wars put together or that the tar sands are the fastest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada (already emitting more C02 than all the cars in the country combined).
    Nothing is more destructive of justice, sustainability, or basic human decency than the heartless “business as usual” shrug of moral apathy so adroitly exhibited in this article.
    Tom Malleson, Assistant Professor, Social Justice and Peace Studies, Western University, London, Ont.”

  8. January 7, 2015 3:47 pm

    Shouldn’t the government outlaw inporting and exporting to China, rather than carbon taxes? Shouldn’t that be the goal of climate summits? Cut off the purchase from the polluter and in the process stop all this rampant commercialism. Wait…..maybe that could cause some kind of war to break out. So if they just kill England or the US economies, then no war, but then there’s no consumerism, so the Chinese decide to get their good another way, and war breaks out. I don’t think this was actually well thought out…….

  9. January 7, 2015 4:26 pm

    Euan, you say “You make some reasonable arguments about the scale of the embedded CO2 problem that are interesting.”

    While it is true that the fall in EU and US emissions is small compared to the rise in Chinese total CO2, the US and EU are operating at a baseline high CO2 emission state, ~10 and ~20 tonnes/capita, for decades. Secondly, the fall in European CO2 though minuscule has gone on for decades as well, well before Kyoto.

    Those hypocritically ‘blaming’ China may have a limited technical point but, as we all likely agree, we don’t have to buy into this argument and point back that Chinese emissions are larger than EU decreases. The Chinese have every right to do what they do and the EU and US are doing good things by exporting their business and manufacturing overseas. EU and US labor restrictions, environmental law stringency and healthcare costs drive entrepreneurs abroad and they only have themselves to blame. Ironically, the political groups that clamour for burdensome environmental regulations and free healthcare are affecting their own electoral base. for How good is breathing clean air if you are shafted by your employer and sitting at home unemployed.

  10. January 7, 2015 4:58 pm

    FWIW methinks it’s the Law of Unintended Consequences kicking in.

    The greenies made energy so expensive in the countries in which they wield influence, that manufacturers exported production to the likes of China.

    The irony being that UK manufacturers were generally very fuel-efficient; and, many used ‘clean’ natural gas.

    Now, the goods are manufactured using less energy-efficient processes; using a greater proportion of coal-fired power; and then shipped to market via diesel-burning container ships.

    More, not less, CO2 has been produced.

  11. January 7, 2015 6:15 pm

    Just to clarify, I don’t disagree that some of the extra CO2 coming out of China has replaced some of our saving due to migration of industry.

    The purpose of the post is to show just how small a proportion it is.

    I do disagree that CO2 on imports should be allocated back to the importer. If China wants to use millions of tonnes of coal instead of lovely solar and wind power to power their factories, that is their responsibility, and not ours.

    [And BTW – sorry if I have maligned Graeme, but the argument that the West is ultimately responsible for China’s CO2 is one that is often deployed elsewhere. That was why I wanted to address the issue]

    I also don’t like the term “exporting of our industry”. China made a conscious, strategic decision to build up their industrial base, and compete against our industries on the basis of cheap labour costs.

  12. Alan permalink
    January 8, 2015 5:38 pm

    Oh no, its finally happened. My 11 year old daughter just came back from school quoting her Geography teacher “99% of scientists agree that Man made global warming is happening and the other 1% were bought by the oil industry”. I despair. My only glimmer of faith is that my daughter does not believe any of it but knows enough that she has to be seen to be believing so she can pass exams. Kind of like the “scientists” being seen to believe it to carry on receiving their grant money.

    • January 8, 2015 5:50 pm

      How sad for your daughter. Perhaps you can find a different school (if there are any that have not been destroyed by politics). Be aware that while at this point, she knows better, but after another 7 years of going along, she may start to believe because it’s just easier. She’ll need your support and help in understanding to not fall victim to taking the easy path.
      Hopefully, your daughter’s fiesty child who can hold her own in the world!

      • Alan permalink
        January 9, 2015 9:21 am

        Actually its a really good school, apart from the Geography department! Although I think this is, unfortuantely, standard fare in UK schools. I will remain vigilant and await the next excuse as to why the world has stopped warming.

      • January 9, 2015 2:11 pm

        That’s true in the US, too. Even private religious schools are embracing the climate change myth. I hope you share the next excuse for why the world has stopped warming when it comes up. Keeps us up to date on the latest warming “logic”!

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