Neo-classical economics treats energy as just another input and the creation of pollution is of no consequence.  Steve Keen debunks this

“A machine without energy is a statue, a worker without energy is a corpse”.

And today the economists, scientists, the corporate elite and mainstream environmentalists are falling over themselves to tell us that environment will be saved because it is “economic” to use 10 units of energy to get 4 in return and to load up with debt that the future has to repay.  Peak human absurdity; it’s in the papers every day.  For example, the Grattan Institute’s pushing green ‘hydrogen’ steel considers only $, no analysis of the energy or resource requirements.  The Emperor has no clothes; but a lot of tailors are protecting their jobs in academia and NGOs and industry by spouting sustainability nonsense.

The economy was stuffed before the pandemic.  The economic position that Liberal and Labor have is to grow GDP by selling out Australia with free trade agreements, money laundering their mates and force-feeding Australia with people (migrants and ‘students’).  The Greens call racist on any discussion on immigration levels, the Unions support the immigration-ponzi because it keeps their construction gravy train rolling and Vice Chancellors sell visas, not education.  I’d much prefer seeing easier access for refugees than allowing people to bribe and buy their way here. 

We used to skill up young Australians.  Not anymore.  Liberal, Labor and the Greens have no problems keeping these occupations on the skills shortage visa list.  Do you?

But others are much more eloquent than I on the hollow shell our economy has become and the societal and environmental destruction yet to be fully realised.

Our Finite World – Gail Tverborg has for years has written on the energy economy nexus.

If we assume that, as of 2020, renewable energy is providing 15% of total energy, then to reach 100% renewable energy by 2030 - and thus achieve zero emissions of CO2 - while maintaining GDP at the 2020 level, would require the installation of renewable energy sources capable of yielding the energy equivalent of roughly 12 billion tonnes of oil every year.

To put this in perspective, to generate the same amount of power from large (1,000 Megawatt) hydro-electric or nuclear power stations in 2030 would require building 16,000 of them between now and 2030, or more than 4 such stations per day, every day. It goes without saying that we do not have the capacity to achieve either goal.

Solar cells and wind farms are technologically far less complicated than nuclear power stations, and capable of being installed in far more locations than hydroelectric dams. However, solar only generates power during daylight hours, wind farms are more restricted in location, and both require an enormous area to generate the same power as a nuclear or coal-fired power station. Since the energy the Earth’s surface receives from the Sun peaks at about 10 Megawatts per hectare, a 1000MW solar power station would require roughly 1,000 hectares of land with optimistic assumptions about efficiency and availability (wind power is even more diffuse). To completely replace our planetary energy production with solar power would require an area of solar panels roughly equivalent to one third the area of Spain.

That amount of land could be provided by the world’s road networks and rooftops, with farms also hosting wind generation, so the goal is not unreachable. But are we getting to this goal fast enough, so that by 2030, renewable energy could provide 100% of our energy needs? Unfortunately, no—and not by a long shot.