h/t to WUWT reader Pat. We are witnessing the crumbling of the consensus mindset. Stern looked like a deer in headlights.
Nicholas Stern is challenged by ABC’s Tony Jones on China/coal/renewables propaganda, and comes out looking very foolish indeed. The Richard Tol stuff is predictable:
VIDEO/TRANSCRIPT: 27 March: ABC Lateline: Back tracking on carbon pricing will damage Australia
TONY JONES, PRESENTER: We were joined just a short time ago from London by Lord Nicholas Stern who headed the review on the economics of climate change published in 2006.
He was also the principal adviser to the British Government on the economics of climate change and development from 2005 through to 2007.
Lord Stern is now chairman of the Grantham research institute at the London School of Economics. Nicholas Stern, thanks for joining us.
NICHOLAS STERN: What China is doing is growing rapidly and trying to reduce the fraction of coal in its energy portfolio and it’s succeeding in doing that.
TONY JONES: Sorry, can I interrupt you there. Do you know what it is at the moment? I found it hard to actually find details of this. What is the percentage of power produced by coal?
NICHOLAS STERN: I think it’s around – you’ll have to check this Tony but I think it’s just below 60 per cent coming down from considerably above 60 per cent.
Don’t hold me on those numbers. All I can tell you is that it’s coming down pretty rapidly in China as a result of direct policy and notwithstanding a likely doubling of the economy in 10 years, that they aim, during that period, to find a peak in coal and then bring it on down thereafter…
***TONY JONES: Finally, as scientists meet in Japan to thrash out the final wording on the IPCC’s next assessment report on the impact of climate change, British economist Professor Richard Toll who was one of the lead authors, has asked for his name to be taken off the document, claiming it’s alarmist and has been changed from talking, as he says, about manageable risk to the four horsemen of the apocalypse. How much damage will his departure do to the credibility of the final report?
NICHOLAS STERN: Not much. He’s always been somebody who as argued that the damages from climate change are there but very small. He’s an outlier really and I think his departure won’t make much difference.
***TONY JONES: Do you think it’s been orchestrated in some way? Is that what you’re suggesting?
NICHOLAS STERN: I don’t know whether it’s orchestrated or not. He’s making his own statements and he’s entitled to do that but I think he’s seen as a bit of an outlier in terms of someone who thinks the damages are much smaller than the rest of us fear and this is risk management, Tony.
You have to be very, very confident that the risks are going to be very small because the science tells us the risks could be very big and it is irreversibility here, as the concentrations in the atmosphere ratchet up, the high-carbon capital and infrastructure gets locked in. Delay is very dangerous so one person saying he thinks the risks might be very small is a very marginal part of the argument because most of the science is telling us that the risks are very big and with the irreversibility that we see in this, any kind of common sense or risk analysis says we should act strongly…
Video and transcript here: