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AEP Falls For The New IEA Outlook

October 18, 2021
tags: ,

By Paul Homewood


h/t Ian Magness


Send in the men in white coats!



The shibboleths of the old energy order fall away. The International Energy Agency has systematically struck down every economic and social objection to net zero.

“The message is clear: a new global energy economy is coming, which is cheaper, cleaner, safer, more resilient, and much fairer across countries,” said Fatih Birol, the director of the agency (IEA). 

For two decades the IEA was aligned with the fossil industry, apt to treat renewables and electric cars in its World Energy Outlook as a romantic niche interest. This year the data tables begin with supply figures for solar, wind, bioenergy, and so forth. The lines for oil, gas, and coal are relegated to the bottom.

Those of us who follow the annual report as the catechism of the energy markets can only gasp with astonishment. Even more surprising is to hear Mr Birol issue a pontifical anathema against fossildom on the eve of Cop26 in Glasgow

“I would like to see world leaders come together and give this message to investors: we are united in building a clean energy future and we are giving you an unmistakable signal that if you continue to invest in dirty energy you are going to lose money, big time,” he said.

The nexus of solar, wind, batteries, hydrogen, electrolysers, and critical minerals will displace the oil industry as the big global beast, accounting for 80pc of international energy-linked trade by 2050. This of course creates a new vulnerability.

The new term “mineral security” jumps out of the pages. One might deduce that aircraft carriers and foreign military bases will leave the Persian Gulf to protect the supply lines for copper, lithium, nickel, and cobalt coming from such places as Africa. Aukus submarines may patrol hydrogen pipelines from Australia to South East Asia.

This is where the superpowers will skirmish under net zero, and where it could all go wrong. How easily can the world find the raw materials for the IEA’s projected increase in utility scale batteries from 20 gigawatts to 3,000 by mid-century?

Yet overall the report is marvellously uplifting, an answer to the climate doomism of Extinction Rebellion. It counters the pervasive assumption that curbing CO2 implies economic “degrowth” and vegan austerity evermore.

A decarbonisation dash will instead accelerate economic growth, lifting global GDP by an extra 0.4pc annually over the next decade. The 5m jobs lost in oil, gas, and coal will be trumped by up to 24m green jobs, and three-quarters of these will be local.

It will lower the average household cost of electricity, heating, cooling, and transport fuel from $2,800 to $2,300 a year by 2030 in wealthier countries, with gradual gains to follow as the energy share of disposable income falls from 4pc to 2pc by mid-century. Energy bills in the developing world will creep up, but that is because of rising affluence.

And so on!


AEP first faux pas is his claim that the IEA was aligned with the fossil industry. In fact since its formation in 1974, the IEA has been a creature of its rich, Western  member governments.

Because they have all committed to the renewable agenda, the IEA has had to slavishly follow their diktats for years, forced to give some sort of credibility to the Net Zero agenda. Every year, Fatih Birol comes out with nonsense like this.

The whole of the latest IEA Outlook has been written around this premise. But that does not mean that the report has any credibility itself.

Nowhere in the report can I find a mention of the fact that wind and solar power still only account for 4% of the world’s energy:



BP Energy Review


And despite the guff that AEP writes about solar farms in Morocco (yes, that would be a good idea, putting out energy supply at the mercy of jihadists!), and green hydrogen, neither he or the IEA have actually managed to explain how the world’s economy can run largely on intermittent renewable energy.

This IEA Outlook is not an objectively written assessment, but a fanciful wish list, designed to provide a fig leaf  to western governments, as they push their Net Zero plans.

There is an assumption in the report, for instance, that governments around the world will actually implement their Net Zero policies, or for that matter be able to. Consequently it is little more than a set of tables, which replace fossil fuels with renewables in the energy mix.

It also assumes that the rest of the world, the non-OECD countries which make up two thirds of the world’s emissions, will simply follow suit.

The report is forced to accept that emissions will carry on rising till 2030, but then assumes that they will miraculously decline rapidly thereafter.

AEP also talks of how 24 million green jobs will replace 5 million fossil fuel ones, and then goes on to claim that renewables will work out cheaper!

But the IEA let the cat out of the bag, when they tell us the cost of their cunning plan:


While western leaders grandstand, the rest of the world neither has the money or desire to castrate their economies in this way. They will carry on much as they are now.

AEP finishes his article by saying:


You could say that the IEA had to fall into line after the election of Joe Biden on a green deal platform. The agency is the servant of the rich consuming nations and they are signed up to net zero. But that only goes to underscore the larger point: the whole Western power structure has mobilised to force breakneck decarbonisation, and via the IEA it has at last come up with precise ways to achieve it. Resistance is becoming futile.

And, of course, he is right – this is a political construct. But it is also a pipedream, a make-believe, not a serious blue print.

Above all, it goes contra to the lessons of history. By and large, it is the free market that delivers solutions that both work and make peoples’ lives better, not government intervention and decree.

If electric cars, for instance, really are so good, people will buy them. And if solar power really is so cheap, power markets will build them without state subsidies and mandates.

Resistance, as AEP will soon find out, is only just beginning.

  1. Eddie P permalink
    October 18, 2021 3:11 pm

    Lost interest when the graph used in the article was the discredited hockey stick with no Roman or Middle Ages warming shown. At that point had to be properganda.

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      October 18, 2021 4:17 pm

      Or perhaps “impropergander”, Eddie? 🥴

  2. Tinny permalink
    October 18, 2021 3:17 pm

    I can’t work out how replacing 5m jobs with 23m jobs will save money.

    Also, if AEP is savvy, he’ll offer to fix everybody’s fuel bill in perpetuity. As the cost of energy continues to plummet (according to him), he’ll clean up.

    • Sean permalink
      October 18, 2021 3:56 pm

      It’s simple — you’re replacing the skilled labor of the people who had to drill and pump oil, and run the refineries to turn the oil into distillate products, or risk their lives going down into coal mines, with the people who will be paid to sweep and clean the solar panels. An army of janitors.

    • The Informed Consumer permalink
      October 18, 2021 6:07 pm

      That fanciful nonsense has already been debunked in Scotland. Tens of thousands of jobs promised by the SNP for renewable energy. So far I believe ~1,300 have materialised.

      • Chaswarnertoo permalink
        October 19, 2021 8:39 am

        Green: gullible, easily fooled, ignorant, naive, etc.etc.

  3. Coeur de Lion permalink
    October 18, 2021 3:28 pm

    See Steve McIntyre on the recent AR6 Hockey Stick. Incredible that it should have got printed. As fraudulent as the previous one. And interesting that we have dropped climate change and are now on ‘cleaness’

  4. Ian Wilson permalink
    October 18, 2021 3:35 pm

    AEP and almost all politicians fail to question the two fundamental assumptions at the base of climate hysteria, namely that the world is experiencing runaway warming and CO2 is the main driver.
    While there has been warming since the Little Ice Age ended it is well within historic ranges and surely less than 1,000 years ago when the Vikings grew barley in Greenland . It is entirely possible cooling may have started, the news that Antarctica has seen its coldest winter since the 1957 IGY being just one indication – anyone hear this on the BBC? As for CO2, the 1997 Oregon Petition Project signed by 41,487 scientists including some of the biggest names in physics like Edward Teller (since died) stated there was no evidence of human originated gases causing warming. Granted, that’s 24 years ago but the laws of physics don’t change. Most readers of this blog know this but alas too few others.
    Maybe the agenda for Flop26 should be changed to tackling cooling

  5. Patsy Lacey permalink
    October 18, 2021 4:08 pm

    Embarrassingly for Biden, Joe Manchin Democrat senator for coal rich Virginia has told the White House that he strongly opposes the clean electricity program. As a result the White House staffers are rewriting the legislation without the climate provision and are trying to cobble together a mix of other policies which could also cut emissions. Will this be publicised at COP26

  6. Robin Guenier permalink
    October 18, 2021 4:12 pm

    AE-P ‘gasps with astonishment’ when Fatih Birol says:

    “I would like to see world leaders come together and give this message to investors: we are united in building a clean energy future and we are giving you an unmistakable signal that if you continue to invest in dirty energy you are going to lose money, big time.”

    He’s right to gasp: only in dreamland would Presidents Xi and Putin and Premier Modi say that.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      October 19, 2021 8:34 am

      Seems to me that investors can and should make up their own minds. It’s their money they will lose so why does the IEA care? Where’s governments are losing my money without my agreement day after day.

  7. October 18, 2021 4:33 pm

    AE-P is another reporter who lives in a fantasy world – one he doesn’t understand. He would feel just as comfortable living in the fantasy/propaganda world of the BBC, Grauniad, Channel4 etc etc. How downhill the Telegraph has gone.

  8. Jackington permalink
    October 18, 2021 5:00 pm

    This miracle appears to be possible without resorting to nuclear at all!

  9. Harry Passfield permalink
    October 18, 2021 5:15 pm

    In another life AEP would be the a.s. kisser who would praise every command of Stalin and Lysenko and then use their tractor stats as evidence that he and they were right.
    There’s a name(s) for that kind of despotic allegiance to a cause. Murdering tyrant. For a start…

  10. Vernon E permalink
    October 18, 2021 5:53 pm

    There ought to be some law or regulation under which the DT and/or AEP could be prosecuted for printing this delusional drivel which, sadly, is believed and absorbed by eco-fools like our PM.

    • Harry Passfield permalink
      October 18, 2021 6:32 pm


    • Jack Broughton permalink
      October 18, 2021 8:13 pm

      If you think that this is bad, you ought to see the “i” today. They have let the gullible MADeline Cuff and equally gullible Tom Bawdon have about 6 pages on “Climate Change”, regurgitating all the standard drivel without question.

  11. October 18, 2021 6:40 pm

    I worked at The Golem Press, then took gigs interpreting energy conferences. Slowly realization dawned that utility cartels do not care about energy safety or viability at all. The industry is larded with evasive bureaucrats competing for larger desks and favorable media blurbs.

  12. Martin Brumby permalink
    October 18, 2021 8:38 pm

    AEP and the rest of GangGreen’s propagandists need to get serious.

    This isn’t about whether or not he has a cervix, or even whether cloth masks with 80 microns pores protect against 1 micron virions.

    The drivel that the IEA spews out is an existential threat to civilisation and to the survival of the most vulnerable members of society.

    If he seriously believes the IEA (or the BBC. Or Boris) then he needs to have some skin in the game.

    So, AEP, let’s have a confident assurance about the Green jobs, the cheap energy, the brigh future that awaits.

    Not just cheap words.
    Cock on the block!

  13. Tim Spence permalink
    October 18, 2021 9:15 pm

    Old Tarquin Pritchard has never been anything but a gun for hire, he’s hired to shoot down certain opinions. He studies the subject matter and comes up with a an alternative viewpoint and it’s always fantasy. He’s a genius really but nobody should pay attention to him.

  14. October 18, 2021 9:16 pm

    So energy will go from employing 5m to 24m people.

    But it will cost less?

    • October 18, 2021 11:05 pm

      Just as there are no benefits, only costs, from global warming, there are no costs to renewables, only benefits. That even applies if two sets of benefits are logically incoherent. Thus, there is a benefit to renewables that they will lead to a multitude of green jobs. But renewables will also reduce the cost of electricity.

      This is not possible in the real world, but it is certainly realistic in unicornland.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      October 19, 2021 8:30 am

      Only if those marvelous Green jobs pay 20% of the ones they replace!

  15. David Wojick permalink
    October 18, 2021 9:44 pm

    On careful reading IEA’s green fantasy is ridiculous.
    See my

  16. cookers52 permalink
    October 19, 2021 12:46 am

    The gullible are in charge of the cash and the snake oil salesmen have emerged. It has always been that way.

    My advice is keep clear of anything to do with climate change, just keep out of the way. Better to watch from the sidelines as this all goes t*ts up.

  17. October 19, 2021 7:23 am

    Assuming we will be talking about this subject later? All part of the painless net zero. As I write it is dark, raining and no wind. How do we power these things?

  18. Phoenix44 permalink
    October 19, 2021 8:36 am

    Great. Then let’s wait until this Nirvana arrives and then switch over. Why buy stuff now that’s going to be cheaper and better in the future?

  19. Coeur de Lion permalink
    October 19, 2021 9:45 am

    O/T I’m afraid but have today heard that the BBC is running a play about Climategate which is bound to be another whitewash attempt. The real Phil Jones was up complaining about the media pressing him on short snippets of emails ten years old. That it said the emails were ‘stolen’ tells you all. No one asked Jones whether he actually deleted any FOI emails. Nor did any of the four whitewashes so ably dissected by Ross McKitrick. I’ve always believed it was a sickened insider.

  20. Gamecock permalink
    October 19, 2021 11:11 am

    ‘The message is clear: a new global energy economy is coming, which is cheaper, cleaner, safer, more resilient, and much fairer across countries,” said Fatih Birol, the director of the agency (IEA).’

    ‘Fairer’ means they aren’t serious.

    ‘Those of us who follow the annual report as the catechism of the energy markets can only gasp with astonishment.’

    See what he did there? Demand for electricity is continuous, not annual. Indeed, the high use of renewables is government mandated, not market driven. A modern economy cannot survive on renewables.

    A modern economy cannot survive on renewables.
    A modern economy cannot survive on renewables.
    A modern economy cannot survive on renewables.
    A modern economy cannot survive on renewables.
    A modern economy cannot survive on renewables.

  21. October 19, 2021 11:54 am

    Watch what happens in California and its economy. They seem intent on leading the way down the dead-end renewables and electric-everything rabbit-hole.

  22. EppingBlogger permalink
    October 19, 2021 5:34 pm

    We need a disclosure system so that reports from any organisation whose income is more than (say) ten per cent from tax payers or who have a retired politician or mandarin on the board, are made clear to the public. Clear also to the MSM so they stop describing them as “independent” sources of forecasts.

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