Oxfam's Climate Warriors Declare War on Poor People

Energy Use 2010-2015

Energy Use for Aluminium Smelting 2010-2015. Source World Aluminium Institute

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Oxfam have written a report which claims coal power will create more poverty. In my opinion this claim is a disgusting direct attack on the coal fired industrialisation, jobs and opportunities currently lifting a growing number of people out of chronic poverty in Asia and Africa.

More coal equals more poverty: Transforming our world through renewable energy

executive summary

Tackling poverty and inequality means bringing an end to the fossil fuel era, beginning with no new coal and supporting renewable energy for all.

More coal will drive more people into poverty through the devastating consequences of climate change and the direct toll of coal mining and burning on local communities, including loss of land, pollution, and health impacts.

With the vast majority of energy-poor households in developing countries living beyond the reach of the electricity grid, coal is categorically unsuited to addressing the challenges of energy poverty. Renewables are the clear answer to bringing electricity to those who currently live without it, and are already bringing transformative benefits for communities around the world.

Recognition of coal’s immense toll on vulnerable communities and why more coal will entrench poverty has been largely absent from the battle over climate and energy policy in Australia.

Also missing from the debate has been an acknowledgement of coal’s inability to meet the energy needs of the world’s

poor, and an understanding of the scale and pace of action necessary from Australia to meet our obligations under the Paris Agreement and help limit warming to 1.5°C — a matter of survival for many vulnerable countries.

As an international development agency working in more than 90 countries, Oxfam has observed directly the impacts of coal and climate change on communities worldwide, as well as how renewable energy is changing lives, raising incomes, improving health and education, and powering inclusive development.

Read more: https://www.oxfam.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/More-Coal-Equals-More-Poverty.pdf

The point Oxfam miss is only poor people are vulnerable. Coal makes poor people rich, by allowing their nations to industrialise. The rise of China, the industrial revolution in Europe, the rise of coal fired industry in America – the evidence that coal powered industrialisation leads to wealth is indisputable.

Rich people are not vulnerable to climate change. Rich people can afford tornado proof houses, and decent sea walls. When their crops fail, they can buy more food from elsewhere.

It is not possible to run a modern industrial society off non-hydro renewables. You can start industrialisation using hydro-power, but as industrial demand rises, you rapidly hit a point when water resources are stretched – society has to choose between industrial and agricultural users. This is currently happening in parts of Africa. The only way to solve this problem without hurting your economy is to build cheap power plants. King coal is still the cheapest non-hydro power source. As formerly poor countries like rapidly industrialising Tanzania have discovered, coal is the proven route to escaping long term poverty.

Over 60% of Africans without Power – Will Build Coal Power Plants

AUGUST 12, 2014

President Obama wants to control the use of coal abroad for electricity generation, but he is meeting with opposition. From developed countries such as Japan and Germany to developing countries such as China and India, coal is being used for electricity generation at an increasing rate. Even Africa, with over 60 percent of its population without power, has told the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit last week that it will use coal to provide its residents with power, just as the developed world used the fuel for industrialization. As Tanzanian Minister of Power Sospeter Muhongo said, “We in Africa, we should not be in the discussion of whether we should use coal or not. In my country of Tanzania, we are going to use our natural resources because we have reserves which go beyond 5 billion tons.”[i]  His country currently uses so little coal that at present rates, its supplies would last 50,000 years.

Tanzania is a good example of an industrializing nation in Africa that is attempting to move its population forward, and provide the benefits that electrification brings. Currently, only 24 percent of the population is connected to the grid (and only 7 percent of rural residents), and in order to develop clean water systems, pumping capacity is needed.[ii]   The government’s goal is to lift per capita income from its current $640 per annum to at least $3000. Electrical access is key to this goal.

Read more: http://instituteforenergyresearch.org/analysis/60-africans-without-power-will-build-coal-fired-power-plants/

Another proof that coal is the solution to poverty, is the energy mix used for Aluminium smelting.

Aluminium is utterly essential for our modern life – it is used in everything from kitchen tinfoil, corrosion resistant window frames, the bodywork of lightweight cars, aircraft bodies, its a long list.

But Aluminium smelting is incredibly energy intensive. Aluminium is smelted by running a gigantic electric current through molten ore – there is no other known industrial means of smelting Aluminium. Aluminium smelters are always looking for a way to reduce their energy costs, because their razor thin profits utterly depend on having cheaper power than their competitors. Aluminium smelters have no ideological commitment to a particular source of energy. If wind power or solar power provided a cheaper alternative, they would not let some misplaced loyalty to fossil fuels stand in the way of a bigger annual bonus.

As you can see from the graph at the top of the page, Aluminium smelters choose hydro first, coal second. Renewables don’t even feature on the list.

Oxfam’s attack against coal in my opinion amounts to a campaign of economic sabotage against the industrial development, against the alleviation of the long term poverty of the poorest people of the world.

For shame, Oxfam.

186 thoughts on “Oxfam's Climate Warriors Declare War on Poor People

  1. Delusional nonsense.
    With reference to two of the many things Oxford is famous for – Oxford shoes and Oxfam – it’s simply a load of old cobblers.

    • Last thing I heard Oxfam only give about 10% of what they earn/collect to the people they are trying to “save”. Most of it gobbled up in overheads like paying interior designers to do makeovers on their shops.
      Utter parasites, a far cry from the worthy charity they started out as many decades ago.
      Don’t give them a penny !

      • Again the clear fact is that Oxfam like the green blob cohort, is they fear healthy,
        happy,prosperous, dark skinned people…

  2. You could do a monty python type sketch about coal along the lines of what have the romans done for us . What has coal done for us? Created wealth, gave us light,health,warmth,high living standard,jobs,investment, the bastard lol

  3. It’s all about “our obligations under the Paris Agreement”, a document which exists to distribute wealth and will have no detectable effect on the Global Climate by the end of the 21st Century (using even the most skeptical of climate model calculations).
    But the 1.5 deg. C (or 2.0 deg. C) limit is used to corral the herd. Get the W. Countries (who are footing the bill) to stay in line.

    • Oxfam and others have been crucifying the poor int he developing world for decades, first by insisting that socialism and aid are the answer and now that they cannot have power. They are an appalling bunch, who care only about getting people less poor if it is done on their terms, i.e. no free markets, no capitalism.

      • You can lower the number of poor in the world two ways. You can lift them out of poverty by bringing better living conditions, or you can kill them off by lowering those living conditions further. Since “greenies” want less people to start with, which way do you think they would choose?

    • “The devastating toll of climate change” (aka global warming? I would love to see some description of the “toll” there being none that anyone can point to. If it’s so devastation, it sure a heck should be noticeable.

  4. This Oxfam screed only goes to show that climate change is not a science, it’s a religion.
    Preserve us, we beseech thee O Great Mother Gaia, from the evils of coal and bring us to the promised land of renewable energy. Forgive thy children for they have sinned against thee by wanting the forbidden fruit of electricity, and lead us unto the promised land of birkenstocks, granola and bicycles. O Holy Al Gore and Blessed Saint Suzuki, be with us now and in our hour of need. Amen.

  5. I agree that renewables are the clear answer to bringing electricity to those who currently live without it, and are already bringing transformative benefits for communities around the world.
    -Sarah Sobieski

    • ??? They can’t power a first world city, need fossil fuel back up for whatever their minuscule contribution is. How are 3rd world or developing cities going to rise to our standard of living off renewables?

    • I’m lost for words Sarah. Do you honestly believe what you have just written, because if you do, God help us is all I can say.

      • Copypaste is the climate-obsessed’s best friend. Well, that and the lemming-like, credulous, stupid, failing, doom story-seeeking media.

    • Sarah Sobieski: you forgot the /sarc. Since you post is utterly devoid of any fact which can be verified, I must assume it was intended as sarcasm.

    • Delusional Sarah.
      “Environmental justice” is a delusional term, detached from reality, and invented by socialists.
      Renewable energy is a developed country’s indulgence in virtue signaling.
      Which is what you are doing here Sarah — virtue signaling to your fellow eco-lunatic watermelons.

    • Sarah, this sounds great if you only want to power a few lights in your mud hut but see how many solar panels will be needed in rural Africa to power an electric stove. Currently the locals burn wood for cooking and as there is no natural gas, coal fired mains power is the answer.

    • Sarah: Perhaps you’d like to pay the power bills for residents of Ontario who have seen their rates double thanks to the forced introduction of “renewables”.

      • Since the resident’s of Ontario are using less electricity, that means that there is more electricity available to ship to poor people in Africa.

    • I suppose if electricity availability on an intermittent basis is your goal, Sarah, you’ll accomplish that with “renewables”. But why should the third of the world that currently doesn’t have electricity be straddled with an unreliable, relatively expensive power source?
      What you call “transformative benefits” sounds like a line out of Obama’s old debunked playbook, in which he gave a sub-par program a grandiose name but the results were just the opposite.

    • A small home in rural Africa can power itself with a solar panel and battery storage — until it needs to power refrigeration, cooking, and air conditioning. Then it needs quite a bit more power than a solar cell can provide.
      If only refrigeration and air conditioning didn’t save orders of magnitude more people than carbon dioxide kills, then you might have an argument. But, then you would also understand why inexpensive electricity is important to reduce poverty.

      • Solar panels would be ideal for water transfer. No batteries needed. Just a low volume DC pump to pump water out of a well during the day into a tank. Elevate it for pressure.

        • That takes much, much more energy than you think.
          Water level 35 feet down. You need 500 gallons a day for the village.
          Latitude 35 south. Cloudy conditions half the time.
          How many sq meters of solar cells do you need for the pump?
          In summer? In winter?

    • already bringing transformative benefits
      we used solar panels for 20 years while sailing around the world. from experience they are no replacement for the 100 amp large frame alternator I had bolted to the diesel engine.
      the 3 solar panels put out about 10 amps total at 14 volts for 6 hours a day, when it was sunny, living in the tropics. this charged 2×200 amp-hour batteries. it was enough to provide lighting at night, but if we used the laptop computer or cooling fans, the batteries would run down and we would need to use the diesel to charge. refrigeration was butane gas as electric refrigeration is prohibitive on a boat without a genset.
      every 3 years the batteries would need to be replaced at $200 each. the panels were about $300 each and slowly degraded each year, with cells turning from blue to light-brown. the whole system required careful maintenance to avoid damaging the batteries and panels. not something suited to someone lacking an education, discipline, and a supply of de-ionized water.
      so while solar sounds good. unless you have maintained a solar system, you probably have no idea of how poorly suited they are to people without training and experience. In Tonga for example, an very expensive solar system was useless because the people tasked to maintain the system on remote islands urinated in the batteries to fill them when they got low. that is typical of the third world. they know the water in the batteries is bad to drink, they know piss is bad to drink, therefore why would there be a problem using piss to fill the batteries? remember these people have never owned a car, they have no idea how electricity or batteries work.
      having lived for many years in primitive 3rd world countries I will attest there are a near infinite number of ways humans can invent to get things wrong.

      • You don’t have to use lead-acid batteries anymore. However, you will need a cooling system for lithium ion batteries — otherwise they will decay faster.

    • I agree that renewables are better than nothing, but they are far from the “clear answer” that you wish to believe in.

    • So you think the answer to lifting people out of poverty is to make essentials as expensive as possible?
      How would that work then?

    • renewables are the clear answer to bringing electricity to those who currently live without it, and are already bringing transformative benefits for communities around the world.

      Sure if your definition of having electricity is a couple led lights in a mud hut, a transistor radio to listen to the governments latest propaganda and a 1920’s style windmill powered well pump. The geo-political situation in most un-electrified areas is simply too unstable to attract any real investment to build out the infrastucture that electrification requires

    • Come on guys, let’s not be so hard on Sarah. Sunlight is free. Wind is free. It’s the perfect answer for those who have little or no money. The actual implementation is just a minor detail. (That’s as far as her logic seems to go. And do I really need a /sarc flag?)

    • Sarah, what do you know of electric power generation, transmission and distribution? For over 30 years I worked in increasingly responsible postilions in planning, finance, design, construction and operation and maintenance of such systems, winding up as CEO and General Manager of an electric utility.
      With current technology, wind and solar generation are not economic, and add to the instability of the electric systems to which they are added. Policy mandates and massive subsidies are required for them to be installed, utilizing the benefits of the existing systems’ reliability. Reliability goes down as they are added. These are physical and economic facts that only the ignorant or decietful ignore.

    • Sorry Sarah, that is Greenie wishful thinking nonsense. I’m sure you mean well but if you really care about the poor in underdeveloped countries you should really study the economic feasibility of what you suggest as millions of lives depend on efficient development.
      Those poor countries are going to go ahead with coal power anyway and we should support that.The idea that we know what is best for them is a fantastic conceit that makes you sound like a colonialist. They know what their people need and demand. Every dollar wasted on worthless wind or lousy solar takes the poor farther from decent standards of living.
      What does it say about the real cost and efficiency of solar when it doesn’t even add up in Africa without subsidies?.

  6. With the vast majority of energy-poor households in developing countries living beyond the reach of the electricity grid, coal is categorically unsuited to addressing the challenges of energy poverty.”
    Why is something like this being published – when it’s self-evident that developing countries will act completely contrary:
    “Renewables are the clear answer to bringing electricity to those who currently live without it, and are already bringing transformative benefits for communities around the world.”

    • http://reason.com/archives/2016/11/25/energy-poverty-is-much-worse-for-the-poo

      But what about climate change? Current renewable sources of energy are not technologically capable of lifting hundreds of millions of people out of energy poverty. Consequently, the Breakthrough writers see “no practical path to universal access to modern levels of energy consumption” that keeps the projected increase in global average temperature below the Paris Agreement on climate change goal of 2 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial level. This implies that atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide will exceed 450 parts per million. They correctly point out that forcing poor people to forego economic development in order to prevent climate change is a “morally dubious proposition.” They additionally observe that the wealth and technology produced by economic growth increases resilience to climatic extremes and other natural disasters. When bad weather encounters poverty, disaster ensues.

      The truth is also relative. The World Bank continues to fail to fund energy poverty initiatives, meaning that the rhetoric is all hot air. There is no intention to eliminate energy poverty by the international community.
      It’s all smoke and mirrors.

      All of the banks again received a failing grade of “F” when evaluated against the five energy access criteria, as they did in the previous version of this report released in 2014. This is a disappointing outcome given the increased awareness of the importance of universal energy access spurred by, among others.

      Fuel poverty is a continuing and ongoing problem in the UK since they’ve added taxes to fossil fuels.

      Every winter, 25,000 older people in England and Wales do not survive the bitter weather – 206 deaths a day. Those living in the coldest homes figure most in the excess winter death rates and illness statistics, according to Age UK. Yet 3.5 million fear they will not be able to afford their heating bill.

      Fuel poverty in the UK is due primarily to rising energy costs (including taxes on carbon)

      Year Avg Gas Bill Avg Electricity Bill
      2006 387 374
      2007 441 415
      2008 517 477
      2009 582 488
      2010 564 474
      2011 617 513
      2012 686 542
      2013 729 577
      2014 752 592
      2015 715 584
      2016 650 586

      Even the Clinton campaigns, Center for American Regress complains about fuel poverty without understanding a solution.

      An estimated 1.6 billion people, concentrated in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, do not have access to electricity. And even more people—a staggering 2.4 billion—use biomass such as wood or dung as their primary source of cooking and heating fuel. These individuals are living in energy poverty, which means they lack access to modern energy services.
      Burning biomass for fuel can pose significant health risks from indoor air pollution, including death. It also shortens workdays according to daylight and forces women and children to collect fuel instead of allowing women to engage in income-generating activities or children to pursue an education. These drawbacks reinforce a household’s inability to escape the energy poverty cycle. …
      The World Health Organization estimates that 1.6 million people die from the adverse effects of indoor air pollution each year, or one person every 20 seconds.

  7. We can’t even get renewables to be self sustaining in first world countries, so what hope has a third world country got in trying to go renwabales alone?
    A first world business committing manslaughter in the name of compassion and love for those less fortunate, does Oxfam really care anymore?

    • No, they never cared. They have always wanted the poor to stay poor so that they can demonstratte theri virtue by “caring”.

    • They have never “cared” as such. The poor in the developed world have only been allowed to get wealthier on Oxfam’s terms, which means left-wing economics and useless aid. Oxfam would rather they stay poor if the alternative is markets and capitalism.

      • It’s easy for do-gooders to spend way too much on small scale solar panels and batteries for the poor in Third World countries. One of the problems with such schemes is the poors’ inability to pay for maintenance and replacement of the systems.
        Without general economic and industrial expansion enabled by economical fossil fuels, poor is still poor. I’d love to see an analysis of the cost of industrializing Africa with wind and solar.

    • “We can’t even get renewables to be self sustaining in first world countries,”
      Good point.

  8. Just under two billion people, the poor of a relatively rich planet, do not have access to electricity. They live as subsistence farmers mostly off-grid, self-contained in largely intact communities, and would benefit from clean water and sanitation (small scale technologies exist that do not demand electricity) and above all security from wars. They exist on less than $2 per day, but that does not automatically make them ‘poor’. They don’t have much money, but they don’t need much either – not for rent, utilities and food. They don’t have ‘jobs’ (with all the stress and insecurity, nor the travails of city life with its vices and dangers). So – how on earth are they going to pay for electricity? I am not aware of any utility world-wide that gives it away – whether coal fired or turbines on stilts.
    Africa does not need ‘industrialisation’ on the old model, whatever the energy resource. It needs a new model, one that safeguards culture and community, food supplies, water and soil, as well as the rich heritage of wildlife. Industrialisation in Africa means large-scale agrichemical farming – which rapidly destroys soil, pollutes water and eradicates wildlife; further, the landless move to cities where jobs are scarce and real poverty with very different stresses awaits.
    This two billion climate-vulnerable world population – in Africa, South East Asia and South America, needs a different development model – founded on eco-village principles pioneered in Europe (especially Spain) and now being widely deployed in South America. But the model creates no markets for our industrial goods nor does it support the ambitions of city elites. Most of our foreign aid actually goes to underpin markets for our goods, or aid in the development of factories that we own but use the cheap labour of the landless who have moved to the city.
    This new form of development does not need an electricity grid – and it can use modern technology such as solar for communication technologies, heating hot water, even cooking. Many communities throughout Europe have maintained a good modern lifestyle with minimal exchange of money.

    • This description looks like a picture of China 100 years ago. But would they have accepted a future life of happy agricultural minimum existence without any industrialization?

    • Peter, There is no easy step from totally primitive 13 th century rural to modern clean pollution and germ free existence. There are many countries with huge percentages of their populations living in abject poverty.It takes a generation or two a lot of goodwill and money to develope infrastructure for power, sanitation and clean water.This brings with it education , health care and industry. To quote you this two billion climate-vulnerable world population, disappear for they are not climate vulnerable they are weather vulnerable for they are subsistence farmers that also live in inadequate housing. There is no easy way the billions that the west has given in aide to these places is huge it is time we supervised what we do,use our money for good power stations, infrastructure and education the rest will follow.

    • Clean water and operable sewage systems REQUIRE reliable power in every step of their systems!
      One of the first things lost when power goes out over a wide area is clean water if the supplied pressure from reserve hydraulic tanks is lost is “clean water” -preventing the contamination from reverse seepage back into the delivery water pipes requires consistent reliable power. The fresh water filters, Cl or ozone gas delivery and metering systems, and the supply pumps all need reliable power or the system fails from the source. You CANNOT build a water system without continuous power first.
      And clean water infrastructure (the ditches, pump systems, pipes, meters, and all the digging required to fabricate those systems) requires reliable power to create those systems! “Clean water” does NOT come from wells (directly) nor from irrigation ditches, nor from rivers and lakes. It starts there as dirty water – and becomes immediately a dirty and contaminated water system a few feet later. (See Mexico. Only a few feet from the US water system.)
      Sewage is worse: It MUST be pumped, filtered, restrained (pressurized into pipes and sewers) into specific gravity and purpose-built wiers and channels that flow into channeled and covered larger pipe systems into the final processing plant. Lose power and all that overflows and jams, clogs, and fails within minutes and hours. The hand and machine work must be done correctly and competently – without corruption and theft at EVERY level from the worker, the supplier, the inspector, the contractor, the governor, the police, the watchman, and the customs/taxman. And THAT doesn’t happen either!
      All this “invisible” concrete, steel, copper, and equipment must be fabricated and installed with power – and with the third-level infrastructure and morality (“thou shalt not steal!” or its reverse civil threat “if thou steal I shall shoot you”) that prevents loss of the newly-installed and run lines. See India: Less than 1/2 the power generated is paid for.
      The basic morals and “people” environment found in today’s second world and third world (and now the increasingly- 6th century fourth world!) countries are fundamental to resolving their problems. Lack of reliable power is a first level requirement that must be solved if they are to get above that “coveted” dirt-poor subusistance farmer culture who cannot feed even himself.
      Yes, renewables can power lights for a few hours in remote villages. But it can do little more than that. Windmill-style pumps can bring dirty water near the surface up, but then it must be hand-carried on the backs of women to the dirt-floor houses infected by vermin and rodents. And those buckets and urns are never washed – they cannot be!
      One leg of the solution is Eliminate Corruption.” Eliminate waste.
      Theft, bribery, and bad practices (by the government, the contractors, the workers, and the inspectors -at ALL levels. The Chinese general-overlords-communists do it by shooting and imprisoning those they find who actually are corrupt, those they accuse of being corrupt, and and those they want to accuse of corruption. (Remove enough and frighten the rest, and eventually the guilty are removed too.) There, the communists have found that they cannot be successful communists without cleaning their systems of waste and useless corruption. (Once cleaned, and kept clean by continued flushing of the innocent and the guilty, the process (almost) can continue to work. The Russian communists never did discover that requirement. the Euro-US-socialist cultures continue to piggy-back off of the remnants of the clean workers left from the previous WASP-capiatlist-productive cultures, do they not?

      • RACook: “Clean water and operable sewage systems REQUIRE reliable power in every step of their systems!”
        A salutary example of this nearly happened in Montreal in early 1998 in the great ice storm. Four days of near-continuous freezing rain had coated power lines with up to four inches of ice, at which point power lines began to collapse under the weight. Montreal is normally supplied by six major high voltage lines. At one point five of them were down. Had this last one also failed, Montreal would have been completely without power and the sewage pumps would have stopped, in which case, according to one city official, Montreal would have ceased to be a city and would have been merely a verminous collection of uninhabitable buildings.

    • Well stated!
      I repeat what I posted below about the means to make a real improvement in the lives of such people:
      “Grameen Shakti has brought 1.4 million solar energy systems, over 800,000 improved cooking stoves, and nearly 30,000 biogas power plants to people in rural Bangladesh. It is installing approximately 25,000 solar home systems, 14,000 improved cooking stoves, and 300 biogas power plants every month. The total number of beneficiaries is now over 15 million.”

      • So 30,000 small biogass power plants are better than one big clean coal power plant? Improved cooking stoves doesn’t sound better than electric stoves or even gas stoves for that matter. I also think the total number of beneficiaries = 15 million is also statistical exageration right up there with deaths “linked” to air pollution.

      • But nobody was building the grid or the power plant and the people involved could not afford it maybe if they did.

      • Griff-When they get real grid power those things will go in the first yard sale!

    • Peter, South Africa currently gives free power to whoever can steal it – with little appetite to crack down on illegal connections. The comment about subsistence farming I’ve seen to be true but that is a changing landscape as well. For subsistence farming to work the entire family has to be involved, including children. I’ve yet to see a subsistence farming community in the places in Africa where I have lived and worked (SA, Botswana, Guinea, Senegal) who don’t cook inside using wood or dung (which ultimately shortens their lifespan). If we think these people are ‘happy’ to be subsistence farmers then surely all of the aid organisations, including Oxfam should just leave them alone?

    • These ECO Villages are just groups of people who want to hide away from the rest of the world and this isolationist ideal has been pursued by a minority and been going on for centuries and is not new. However, I bet when one them falls ill they run off to the nearest fossil fuel built and operated hospital using the fossil fuel created transport or road network that was paid by those city elites. This is an unsustainable retrograde model that can not be implemented globally for more than a small percentage of the population. The health benefits, lower population growth and lower poverty in the modern world has occurred because of widespread cheap interconnected energy shared amongst the greater population. Wind and solar can never supply this baseload energy that ends poverty in the 3rd World.
      You may not like the idea of farmers walking off the land and going to work in the big city, but the fact is with modern technology you don’t need to have so many hands working the land. This frees up labour for other uses and most of those employment opportunities lie in or around cities which can not be powered by wind and solar alone.

    • So how are they going to pay for all the good things without industrialization Peter?
      You seem to be engaging in more than a bit of magical thinking there.
      We’ll provide them with electricity, refrigerators, stoves, etc. But they can continue to be subsistence farmers because that’s what their culture is.
      What if they don’t want to be subsistence farmers? Will you kind benevolent folk force them to stay on the farm because in your opinion, that’s what is best for them?

    • Utterly naive and beyond patronising.
      I worked for a year in a village in Africa in the 1980s as a teacher. Dirt poor, utterly vulnerable to a few months bad weather or bad luck, high infant mortality, only a few people made it to old age, no opportunities for the young except backbreaking labour in the fields and with the cattle, and most children working 10-14 hour days from the age of 5 or 6. Lots of disease, including malaria and sleeping sickness. Most people were infected with parasites and were weakened and in pain for large amounts of the tiem.
      Yes, paradise indeed, Go there, try it for a few months and then come and tell us how lovely life is there.
      And you confuse being able to afford things with being charged for things you use. The fist comes first.

      • Excellent comment! If only the disgusting bureaucrats at the U.N. and Oxfam had as much understanding of the needs of the poor.

        • The UN and Oxfam won’t be there when those cheesy solar systems need maintenance or replacement.

    • https://thebreakthrough.org/images/pdfs/Energy_for_Human_Development.pdf

      Decentralized renewable and off-grid energy technologies can play an important
      role in some contexts, where they are targeted to increase agricultural productivity
      or otherwise support productive economic enterprises capable of raising incomes,
      particularly when they are deployed in ways that augment expanding centralized
      grid electricity. They cannot, however, substitute for energy and other infrastructure
      necessary to support industrial-scale economic enterprise. Micro-finance, microenterprise,
      and micro-energy are no substitute for industry, infrastructure, and grid

      Historically, rising household energy consumption, especially electricity consumption,
      has come as a side benefit of industrialization, urbanization, and agricultural modernization.
      Rural electrification has been the last step toward achieving universal
      electrification, after rural regions have depopulated, population has shifted to urban
      and suburban areas where economies of scale and population density allow electrification
      to be achieved at lower cost, and rising societal wealth in the urban and
      industrial core allow extension of electrical grids to the periphery, usually with some
      form of state subsidy.

      While this reality brings with it unquantifiable risks of dangerous climate change,
      insisting – either implicitly or explicitly – that the poorest people on earth forego basic
      economic development in order to mitigate climate change would seem to be, at the
      very least, a morally dubious proposition, particularly given that energy development
      generally increases societal resilience to climatic extremes and natural disasters.

  9. To be honest, i understand both views. i understand the skepticism towards the poor being helped by renewable energy. Unless it’s super cheap i don’t see this happening. On the other hand, coal is not very healthy and a lot of people die digging for it and it does cause pollution. I would assume they would not build the best of the best and most expensive coal plants in developing countries, so pollution would go up.
    I do believe cheap energy, whatever source it may be, will help bring people out of poverty.Question what is best considering the circumstances.

      • well it would help with the size of ulser you seem to have which makes thin shiz come outta ya mouth and seems to clog your american brains 😉
        Despite possible pollution it is also very DANGEROUS mining coal. Maybe you would like get coal longs while working, but i would rather not, thank you. Collapses in mines are also common.
        I would like to read about all the alternatives, not just a coal commercial paid by coal lobyists. I am talking about blue energy, hydrodams, nuclear energy, thorium, earth warmth, making hydrogen from solar/wind energy,etc etc etc

      • Really, Al Dam?
        Your post is a diatribe of insults, ignorance and poor English.
        I’ve worked in the coal industry as a mining engineer and your assertion that it is dangerous is overblown–it can be dangerous when miners are not well-trained or management ignores safety guidelines.
        Otherwise the human cost is far outweighed by the benefit the resultant electrification brings to those it serves in so many ways it would take a paragraph to list.
        So please take your anti-American, anti-social and biased screed elsewhere for it destroys your credibility and does nothing to further the discussion.
        And if you want to read about all the other energy sources you list, there are other threads where much of that has been covered here at WUWT, and there’s a universe of other sources on the Internet you may study and get informed.

      • DANGEROUS mining coal
        driving a bus is also dangerous. so is fighting fires. so is policing. so is cooking over a dung fire. so is living without a supply of clean water. so is living with an open sewer next to your house. even having sex carries risk.
        poverty, ignorance, corruption. those are the big killers on this planet, from which most other problems flow.
        The net effect of trying to control CO2 will be to increase corruption and poverty through ignorance. The Paris Agreement will kill many more people than it saves.

      • “I would assume they would not build the best of the best and most expensive coal plants in developing countries, so pollution would go up.”
        I know reading well is hard 😉

      • Why all the repetitive nasty comments Al Dam? Do you also consider yourself one of the elites? I venture to say you’re neither a scientist or engineer, for if you were, you’d have a better grasp of the information.

      • Al Dam
        “I would assume they would not build the best of the best and most expensive coal plants in developing countries, so pollution would go up.”
        The storage cost for intermittent power doubles the wholesale cost of electricity. Intermittent power requires power storage. I am assuming the use of pumped storage since it is the cheapest of the proven technologies. To backup wind you need at minimum 100% backup that can run for a few weeks.
        If you assume the developing country is going to the cheapest power source, then you have to conclude that they would never consider Wind or Solar because the cost would be twice what fossil fuels are. If the developing country is unwilling to spend a few percent to remove pollutants coal plants, than why would the developing country build Wind since it increases their expenses by 100%

      • “I would presume”
        Just because you are an idiot is no reason to “presume” that everyone else is one.

      • “and it does cause pollution”
        these is no process that is free of pollution of some sort, because nothing is 100% efficient. for example, plants produce oxygen as a waste product that became a deadly poison in earth’s atmosphere for millions of years, until live evolved to use oxygen in large quantities.
        even to this day we eat anti-oxidants to try and minimize the damage done by oxygen. solar and wind power pollute. much of the energy they produce is required to mine and manufacture the panels and windmills, which creates pollution. at end-of-live you still need to cleanup the old panels and windmills and dispose of them somehow.

    • On the other hand, coal is not very healthy and a lot of people die digging for it and it does cause pollution.

      During the 100+ years prior to 1950, railroads were not very healthy and lot n’ lots of people died as a result of constructing, operating and travelling on the railroads and the wood/coal fired “steam engines” caused a horrendous amount of pollution.
      During the 100+ years prior to 1964, the making of steel was not very healthy and
      lot n’ lots of people died as a result of mining iron ore, smelting the iron ore and manufacturing steel products and the “steel mills” caused a horrendous amount of pollution.
      It’s therefore
      a dastardly shame that America didn’t have tens-of-thousands of lefty liberal “greenie” wacko environmentalists to protest and “shut down” the highly polluting businesses of railroading and steel manufacturing before they got firmly established.
      America would now be a simply “super” great place to live and raise a family, a pig, a few chickens, a cow and a horse ….. iffen “railroading” and “steel making” had never been permitted ………. RIGHT?

      • I have not researched figures for the rest of the world, but in the US the population of coal miners has gone from an absolute high of over 600,000 just post WWII to 30,XXX today, while producing a lot more coal and a lot fewer deaths. I believe in most years nobody dies in US coal mining accidents. Part of that is much better safety training and equipment, some of which is due to regulations and some due to the simple fact that you can afford to spend a lot more per miner for safety when you have a fewer of them.
        So like just about every other industrial occupation, coal mining has become much safer in the US since 1950.

    • Burning coal is clean if done with modern filtering systems. They’ve been available since the 1970’s.
      Digging for coal can be dangerous, but modern systems have made it a lot safer.
      Pit mining for coal is very safe.

      • Good point:
        Equipment without humans in the work site can now be used in mining and many other dangerous industries.
        Wealth allows this. Poor does not.

    • These days there are few reasons why anybody should die in a coal mine. The cheapest are open pits with computer driven trucks that are perfectly safe. And other than CO2, coal burning these days causes little or no pollution.

    • Meanwhile millions die for lack of development that would (and will) be provided by coal power! Your basic arithmetic is off by a factor of thousands!

    • Simply put — the number of people who die from poverty are orders of magnitude greater than those who die from coal mine accidents.
      For instance, the United Kingdom has 25,000 “excess deaths” each winter due to fuel poverty — most of which has occurred due to the high taxes on fossil fuels. During extended cold snaps, this has been as high as 40,000 excess deaths from cold.
      By comparison, they had two deaths from mining and quarrying accidents — all mining, not just coal mining.
      Another comparative statistic — they had 6 deaths from environmental services (waste treatment and recycling.) By your logic, that is three times the number from mining, so we should end waste treatment and recycling activities to save lives.
      Does that make sense?

  10. Time for Oxfam to provide evidence of the first hand knowledge they claim to have of the effects of climate change on 3rd world countries.
    Time to stop giving any money to Oxfam.

  11. Just checked the Oxfam website and the Report they use was commissioned from an environmental activist organisation whose ‘mission statement’ is “E3G is an independent climate change think tank operating to accelerate the global transition to a low carbon economy. ”
    So no surprises there then ……..
    Oxfam has, in my view, ceased to be a charity and has, like GreenPeace, moved towards being an environmental activist organisation promoting AGW – even though the cost of that to the poor in the Third World can mean starvation, early death or lung disease or blindness from wood or dung burning fires rather than access to clean energy.

    • But Oxfam and other organisations actively promote clean burning stoves and other methods to reduce lung disease.
      Kerosene lamps are the most common lighting method for the off grid: solar LEDs replace these, removing their former users from fuel poverty (kerosene costs a lot of your disposable income) and removing them from kerosene fumes and the chance of fires…
      Look at what these people are doing:
      “Grameen Shakti has brought 1.4 million solar energy systems, over 800,000 improved cooking stoves, and nearly 30,000 biogas power plants to people in rural Bangladesh. It is installing approximately 25,000 solar home systems, 14,000 improved cooking stoves, and 300 biogas power plants every month. The total number of beneficiaries is now over 15 million.”

      • The development of high-intensity LED lighting has certainly changed the picture as far as light is concerned. It is much more practical to think of solar-charged lighting systems as a result.
        But people also need to cook and kerosene and coal can serve that purpose, and it is much easier to distribute fuel to small villages than to maintain an electric grid.

      • Griff; The power needs, on average, are served by each of these 30,000 biogas “power plants” provided by Oxfam?

      • We know you don’ get math, Griff. The issue is, why don’t Oxfam and similar organizations put that money into a proper power plant and distribution system to provide more power to more people more reliably for longer?
        It’s as obvious as it is cynical and despicable. Oxfam is virtue signalling! They don’t care about these people, they’re just pointing their actions at people like you, Griff, and your support means you don’t care about what those people need either. Just another hypocrite and poseur!

    • When? Like most aid organisations, it has entrenched poverty in developing countries by opposing markets and real economic development in favour of naive socialism. In the 1950s, Malawi and Tanzania had a similar GDP per capita to south Korea. They followed the typical Oxfam supported socialism and South Korea went the market route. GDP per capita in South Korea is now ten to fifteen times higher.

  12. It is common knowledge that World Bank, Oxfam, like groups wasting public money produce such poor quality reports without any scientific evidence. I made my counters on such reports in the past in news papers.
    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

  13. The great continent of Africa has many resources, hydropower, mineral resources, large green areas of land through all desired climate zones –
    Why is this not used and developed.
    Why there are every seven years hunger catastrophes and all-yearly kinky outbreaks –
    Where are the financial inflows to the UN and the African Union, where are the reserves of UN and the African Union that we have been financing for more than 50 years.

      • I really don’t think it is – if you go here and select the Africa and Middle East region and map, then all coal plants still in status less than in construction, it is just a few countries:
        and I have my doubts about the ones announced in SA, Zimbabwe and most of the Kenyan ones.
        (SA ones under construction have been so for years.. no yet connected)

      • Griffie has doubts! Green NGOs know better!
        I guess we shouldn’t believe the people actually responsible for such things.

      • what happened in Zimbabwe is EXACTLY the Utopia presented in the comments above, about eco communities. the land was ‘GIVEN BACK” to small scale farming by poorly trained farmers, who lacked the resources to manage the land. quite simply, you cannot farm and create a surplus using human and animal powered equipment. the farmers need to eat all they produce to keep their families and livestock going.
        one competent person with fossil fueled equipment can farm more acres than 1000 humans and animals without fossil fuels. the fossil fueled equipment will need 500 people worth of food to pay for the equipment, leaving surplus food for 499 people, while the human powered farming will eat all they produce.
        basically it was mass production techniques using low cost fossil fuel that created the modern world. Getting rid of CO2 is like cutting off your head to spite your face.

      • ferberple, the land was not given back to poor farmers, but to Mugabe’s cronies. The poor – as usual -got shafted. They got scraps of poor land here and there, but the decent, large, viable farms went to the politicians and other cronies.

    • well the answer to that is easy. corruption. Also the system works in the favor of those in power to be corrupt with the money flowing in from companies which like to bribe them.
      We give short term solutions, meaning donate money to buy food, which causes long term problems, over population. Causing more hunger.
      The balance in africa is gone and things are unhinging. Unfortunately us in Europe are very close to the shit storm which is about to happen. If only we had a real effective goverment which was democratically chosen…oh wait…we’re doomed

      • And you criticize the United States?
        Looks like you need to start with your part of the world.
        What have you done recently to curtail corruption except complain about it?

      • I love how the twit assumes that the solution for Africa is for them to stay dirt poor subsistence farmer’s.
        Cultural arrogance at it’s greatest.

  14. “Another proof that coal is the solution to poverty, is the energy mix used for Aluminium smelting.”
    Skeptics have a weird sense of proof. When it’s something they believe. .The bar is low. And even nonsensical.
    When it comes to their claims throw science out the window.it’s proved!! Coal is the answer to poverty.
    West Virginians laugh.

    • Poor Mosh.. I see you are still aiming to upgrade to being a used car salesman from the current low-end job.

      • Poor Mosh:
        Science understanding – grade, 0.
        Economics understanding – grade 0.
        Logic content of comments – grade 0.
        Strike three.

    • Why do people on here take this ‘Steven Mosher’ person seriously? His comment here is idiotic, barely readable and lacking in any redeeming qualities whatsoever. I’ve no idea what point he’s trying to make.

      • Well he has a point… Aluminum smelting is only economic where you have a large supply of very cheap electricity locally… examples include Icelandic geothermal, or a hydro dam right next door.
        It is not generally economic just plugging into the grid.

      • All you’ve shown is that a commodity which consumes an inordinate amount of electricity looks for the lowest price point for that component, Griff. That’s what capitalism does on a grand scale.
        But the price and availability of electricity has to be balanced against the location and availability of aluminum ore and a dozen other factors that impact the operation of the smelter. Again, capitalism comes to the rescue.

      • As they say, “ignorance can be fixed, stupidity is permanent”.

        Well he has a point… Aluminum smelting is only economic where you have a large supply of very cheap electricity locally

        YUP, and the coal fired electrical generators were right next door and the Democrats started closing down coal mining operations, ……. And the repercussions were, to wit:

        Century Aluminum permanently closes Ravenswood, WV plant
        The Ravenswood smelter had been idled since February 2009, putting 650 employees out of work. The company eventually eliminated health insurance coverage for its retirees after the closure.
        “The decision to permanently close the Ravenswood plant is based on the inability to secure a competitive power contract for the smelter, ………….. Century’s statement reads. “As a result, the economics of restarting and operating the facility are unfavorable.”
        Read more @ http://www.tristateupdate.com/story/29644806/century-aluminum-permanently-closes-ravenswood-wv-plant

      • Griff:
        Iceland hosts the 2nd largest aluminum smelter in Alcoa’s inventory. It consumes 100% of the power generated by a hydro dam built expressly for that purpose by the Icelandic Power company. That one smelter consumes a large percentage (I seem to recall about 80%) of the electricity generated in all of Iceland. No geothermal at all. Each metric ton of aluminum requires about 13 megawatt-hours of electricity. The Fjardaál plant can produce up to 346,000 metric tons per year.

      • Griff
        May 22, 2017 at 4:54 am
        Well he has a point… Aluminum smelting is only economic where you have a large supply of very cheap electricity locally…
        Yes Griff, definitely Mosher has a valid point……. I do completely agree with you on that one…
        Now Griff, if you being a ware and recall, I plainly have said that I liked you.I still do.
        Because in anyway I did have to consider you, you were not a Troll, and besides you showed to be very clever as far as I can tell.
        But now as this is about Mr. Mosher, I have to say that due to your point of clearly understanding Mosher, I have to ask this….will you will or will you not follow and allow me to have the chance and find out how right or wrong, or silly, I am about Mr. Mosher…….??
        It is a chance for me to find out, I will you promise that if you will follow with this I have to come to the point that I will “turn around the card that I have banged all my chips on”…..your call your chance.Now.
        No tricks,, I will be as plain as I can…..promise, no any misunderstanding about it at all, no matter how confusing it may end up to be…
        Please let me know Griff….thanks in advance.

      • Alan -thanks for that correction… I had assumed since much Icelandic generation is geothermal, that was too.
        Never mind – the point is still valid: the plant is there because it can be situated right next to a dedicated relatively cheap power supply

    • It never ceases to amaze me how little Mosh knows.
      First off, please provide your proof that without coal mining, W. Virginians would be better off than they are now.
      Secondly, please demonstrate proof that cheap power is not creating wealth.
      Like most socialists, Mosh starts from the assumption that if everyone in society does not advance equally, than nobody should be permitted to advance.
      (With the exception of the politicians who run everything.)

      • First off, please provide your proof that without coal mining, W. Virginians would be better off than they are now.

        Sorry, MarkW, but that would be an impossible task for Mosher to do.
        If not for coal mining and timbering, …… western Virginia would still be a thinly populated, inaccessible, collection of back-woods rustic homesteads of Hillbilly inhabitants that the State of Virginia would like to forget about.

      • The root of Socialism is laziness and envy. Some people, who have never worked hard or been responsible, convince themselves that they deserve to have power and money. This desire and belief is so strong that will tell any lie and pervert any cause to achieve their goal. As evidence, I give you Al Gore, Hillary, Hitler,Stalin, etc., and lest we forgot, the grandfather of lies and hipocrisy, Karl Marx!

    • What? Because say the UK, which pioneered the use of coal didn’t get rich? And then that example wasn’t followed by other European countries which subsequently got rich?
      The entire history of the Industrial Revolution proves the point, so what exactly are you babbling about?

    • Coal is the answer to poverty. West Virginians laugh.
      get a grip. No-one said that coal mining was the path to riches. having a job mining coal in West Virginia may not pay well, but what is your choice when the alternative is selling crack for a living.
      There are a whole lot of people in the US that owe their wealth and comfortable lifestyle to the low price of West Virginia coal and what it built.

      • …… having a job mining coal in West Virginia may not pay well,

        Probably not as well as the tens-of-thousands of DC “troughfeeders” are paid, …… but pretty darn good pay and benefits for someone that doesn’t have to provide proof of a High School Diploma to be employed in the “coal fields” of WV, ……. to wit:

        West Virginia coal miners earn an average of $55,000 a year, according to the state Coal Association. And the industry provides $3.5 billion to the gross state product of nearly $30 billion.http://www.nbcnews.com/id/10706312/ns/us_news-life/t/mining-best-paying-job-many-w-va/#.WSMRWeQ2yas

      • Regarding the WV coal miner average pay:
        Remember that the cost of living in WV is fairly low, so that $55,000 is really quite a good salary. I would also remind anyone who has forgotten that many people from WV have lost jobs because of the lack of support for coal (among other things). If there are no other jobs, the only option for those seeking work may be to move. Imagine having to leave the place where your family has lived since the 1800s, because there is no work and the town is dying. All connections gone. Not all of this is due to the idiotic environmentalists, but a fair amount can be laid at their feet. Coal supports individuals, families, and communities. If people really cared about preventing coal pollution, they would stop opposing the replacement of aging coal plants with new cleaner plants.
        There a lot of reasons for poverty in WV, and coal has been a contributor. However, that was due more to (past) shady business practices than some sort of intrinsic flaw in coal. (Though my Pennsylvanian mother will tell you that in WV they mine crappy coal, unlike the anthracite mined in PA.)

    • When it comes to their claims throw science out the window.it’s proved!! Coal is the answer to poverty.
      West Virginians laugh.

      Steven Mosher, you neglected the fact that the Democrats had complete control of the WV Legislature for 70 continuous years, ….. until enough RINO Republicans were voted in, giving them the, per se, leadership control, which was 4 or 6 years ago, I forget which. But it is still “same ole, same ole” with the elected politicians still mostly dependent on out-of-state entities telling them what to do.
      “HA”, ya know the “fix” is in when a New York Republican moves to WV ….., registers as a Democrat, …. and in a few short years he is elected to the House of Delegates, then as Governor, and then to the US Senate. The Rockefeller family had extensive inve$tment$ in WV’s natural resouurces (fossil fuels) …… and thus their “family fox” was sent to live in the “hen house”..

    • You might enjoy reading this:
      Night Comes to the Cumberlands: A Biography of a Depressed Area
      by Harry M. Caudill

  15. “Let them eat cake” did not end well for the elitist who proposed that high end solution for people in poverty .

    • >>
      “Let them eat cake”
      It’s too bad that Marie Antoinette had such bad press. She apparently never made such a comment. But in the end she probably lost her head over it.

  16. Obviously, all payments to the UN and the African Union are just enough to provide UN and African Union with a ‘reasonable living standard’.

    • Well, if you solve “the problem”, the funding stops. So there should be no surprise what usually happens…
      See also Pournelle’s ‘Iron Law of Bureaucracy’. If there’s a worse example of bureaucratic nonsense than the UN, I’d like to know what it is.

  17. Rich people can afford tornado proof houses, and decent sea walls. When their crops fail, they can buy more food from elsewhere.

    Rich people can afford to use less electricity, if they want. One of the big users of electricity is the clothes dryer. A heat pump clothes dryer uses less than half the electricity that a standard dryer uses. It only costs three or four times as much. link
    Americans are using a bit less electricity even as the economy improves. link As the technology improves and gets more efficient, people use less material and energy.

    Between 1977 and 2001, the amount of material required to meet all needs of Americans fell from 1.18 trillion pounds to 1.08 trillion pounds, even though the country’s population increased by 55 million people. link

    It is more likely that improved technology will save us more energy than wind and solar will ever provide. The trick is that we have to stay prosperous enough so the technology can continue to improve and people can afford to buy the new efficient stuff and replace the old energy hogs.

    • The end goal is saving money, not energy and/or materials. Eyes on the prize. To do a proper analysis of say, the “heat pump clothes dryer” (which I’ve never heard of), you have to take the cost of the unit, average cost of use, and expected life of the unit including any maintenance to get the average annual cost, and do a cost-comparison with an all-electric or gas unit.

      • Does “heat pump clothes dryer” refer to an outside clothes line? Where the unmentionables go on the inside lines and the sheets on the outside?

      • The end goal is saving money

        Maybe for you and me. 🙂
        Some people drive a Prius. It will never pay for itself based on energy savings. The benefit for those people is that they can imagine that they are saving the world.

    • If home owners associations allowed it, in most of the US for most of the time you could air dry the clothes on a rotary clothesline.
      this technology costs absolutely nothing to run and works even in the UK climate

      • You are right of course. We could save even more energy by hand washing the laundry. You could also make the point that we are way too obsessed with hygiene. We could save a lot of energy by washing and laundering half as much and probably not suffer much of an immediate effect on our health.
        We just shouldn’t be under the illusion that the above activities will make us better off or that the environment will benefit.
        The one principle of economics that is both true and not obvious is comparative advantage. If we all try to do all the things we ‘could’ do, we will be worse off and, non-intuitively the environment will be worse off. When people are prosperous they demand a clean sustainable environment. Poor people, having a hard time scraping together a living, have no such luxury.

    • The problem with heat pump clothes dryers is that you don’t save enough electricity over the life of the dryer to pay for the increased cost of the dryer.

  18. Undoubtedly renewable energy and simple solutions like solar powered LED lights materially improve the lives of the poorest people without access to electricity…
    and grid electricity, from whatever power source has not reached that population in the last 50 years from any power source (including hydro).
    Countries working on providing power to the majority of the populations in Africa like Morocco and Kenya are doing it largely with solar/wind/geothermal.
    Rwanda has doubled its grid available power using solar.
    There’s no point putting a coal plant in a developing country with no coal reserves which has to import coal.
    And even where there is coal there may not be the infrastructure to deliver it.
    India is putting its efforts into renewables, principally solar and cancelling coal plant – 175GW by 2022.
    At the most basic level, simple renewable solutions have a dramatic effect. At the larger level, including improvement in economic development, solar/wind etc can do as much as any grid based power supply to support industry and development. but crucially it does not involve the costs of importing fuel.

    • Griff,
      In response to your dumb-ar*e reply at 4:54am, you seem to have trouble reading charts.
      The Aluminium smelting industry uses negligible power from geothermal (ie Iceland only) AND the big contributor is coal AND the use of coal for this purpose is growing. Have another look at the chart old chap (or sheila).
      However, being as green as you seem to be, it should be no problem for the world to immediately dispense with aluminium cans, window frames and automobile components.
      By the way, that wizz bang electrical vehicle of yours needs a sh*t load of aluminium in alloys as the batteries are so bloody heavy.
      And please stop telling blatant lies about India cancelling coal plants. Lies lower your limited credibility even further.

    • “India is putting its efforts into renewables, principally solar and cancelling coal plant – 175GW by 2022.”
      If you had read the link you provided about this on another thread you would know that the reason they are cancelling the new plants is because they have already have an excess of power available from current coal plants. That’s just good business.

      • This is a sudden switch – I thought India was continuing to build coal plants at an enormous rate which means that it is useless for the US to cut CO2 because the Indians will be building coal at that rate???
        Now we find they had enough power all along?
        They are cancelling coal because they are installing renewables and because the coal isn’t needed. They still need to meet more demand and connect more people – they won’t be doing it with coal.

  19. Wind and solar costs keep dropping whereas the cost of building coal goes up as increased pollution controls are necessary and the fact that in a limited number of years they will probably be disavowed entirely.
    It would seem to me that people who have no power would welcome wind and solar with no back up. During the day it works, and at night it some times works. That might be a good start for them, better than the status quo. Plus, it doesn’t require an extensive power gird.
    “One of the big users of electricity is the clothes dryer.”
    Hmmm. I wonder how people dried clothes before the event of electricity?

    • Hmmmm, I wonder how people lit and warmed their dwellings before the advent of electricity.
      I Note that basic English and punctuation are not taught at the Green School.

    • While the post subsidy cost of renewables is going down, they are still orders of magnitude more expensive than fossil fuel/nuclear. When you include in the cost of storage needed to make renewables usable, the cost of them goes up by another order of magnitude.
      PS, no new pollution controls are necessary for coal.

    • Wind and solar costs keep dropping
      forget clothes dryers. the most basic household need for electricity is REFRIGERATION for food storage.
      try and power your freezer with wind or solar. a couple of cloudy windless days and all the food in your freezer spoils. the prices of spoiled food quickly overwhelms the price of reliable energy.
      people talk about solar powered LED lights. this is a drop in the bucket.

      • They apparently are doing fine without it now, aren’t they? I mean, we are talking about people with _no_ electricity getting some electricity.
        We loose power occasionally here in 1st world Michigan, and our freezer stays freezy for days, and our refrigerator doesn’t haven’t have anything that can’t stand room temp for a bit. When we go camping the camp refrig/freezer only gets power occasionally and it does fine. So I think your view on this is largely either personal or cultural.
        And, right, LED lights rock.

    • “It would seem to me that people who have no power would welcome wind and solar with no back up.”
      Why would people welcome having their local wildlife slaughtered by windmills?

  20. Our politicians are not worth the money we pay for them.
    The EU is not worth the money we pay for the EU.
    The UN is not worth the money we pay for the UN.
    The African Union is not worth the money we pay for the African Union.
    Better we give the money to the homeless and the alcoholics, then at least it serves the internal market.

  21. Our MSM is not worth the money we pay for the MSM.
    better we give the money to Google and ‘social networks’ then WE decide whom to ‘believe’.

  22. The poor don’t have anything and thus don’t pay anything already. All levels of USA governments already provide housing and energy for free. It doesn’t even matter that renewables aren’t 100% reliable. I’m not sure why we even argue about costs and reliability anymore, cuz the only things these green zealots care about are will and money. They have the will; we have the money. All they need to do is steal it from us, which isn’t that difficult, really.

  23. If they gave a good goddamn about the people they pretend to care about they would be talking about ensuring first world levels of emission controls on these power plants. Coal, gas, whatever fired but they are going to be fossil fired.
    Didn’t the Chinese just launch an initiative about selling Chinese infrastructure globally? My guess is that Oxfam has Chinese influence only insofar as the occasional press release.

  24. This and several other charities which started out with good ideas and plans have unfortunately become nothing but political lobby groups and I have stopped my support for them. They have a very dismissive way of responding when told why they are are no longer getting any money from me which is sad as they still do some good.
    The Duke of Edinburgh cut his ties with WWF for very similar reasons.
    James Bull

    • The Duke has not cut his ties with the WWF, for any reasons…
      .. though he is just now retiring from public life and active involvement in all the charities he supports due to advance age.

  25. One argument which I found resonates with some with Abrahamic religious backgrounds is : Why did g-d put all those resources there if not for human use ? Is it another cosmic joke like thou shall not eat from the tree of knowledge ?

  26. You can’t run a modern society on hydro either. There just isn’t enough of it to go around.

  27. The lefties have been taken over by the green blob. Oxfam should be required to study real anti-poverty programs, like the US Rural Electrification Program in the 1930’s. It does seem that Oxfam wants to keep the poor poor, to keep their business model in operation.

  28. For information, the author and contributors to the report are identified as:
    Acknowledgements: Oxfam Australia acknowledges the assistance of Amanda Banks,
    Kelly Dent, Rachel Ball, Ula Majewski and Cate Anderson in preparing this report.
    Author: Simon Bradshaw, Climate Change Advocacy Lead, Oxfam Australia

  29. A few years ago the Veterans Administration hospital in Oklahoma City, USA installed a solar array reportedly to save money. The pay back period was about 40 years, i.e. never.

  30. From the article: “More coal will drive more people into poverty through the devastating consequences of climate change”
    There have been no devastating consequences from CO2. This is a figment of alarmists’ imaginations. There is no evidence human-generated CO2 has caused the climate to change. There is very little reason to believe CO2 will ever cause devastating climate consequences or even changes we can measure.
    CO2 keeps rising. Temperatures have not. Don’t know about you, but it’s been a rather cool spring here where I live. Nice mild weather here in the “hottest year evah!”

  31. NGO’s like OxFam & GreenPeace are just human hating groups that thrive on human suffering.

  32. There is no climate change in the tropics! You worried too much about the Arctic and now you are stuck with it. So, if I’m a Nigerian, am I going to raise my temp by 0.1C (tropical disenhancement) which evil should I choose: poverty/disease/early death or prosperity and suffer the 0.1C increase? Drill ye tarriers drill. These people aren’t stupid.

    • An average temp increase globally would see many more days in Nigeria with temps well in the 40s centigrade and make life very difficult.

      • Griffie, average global temperatures tells us nothing about Nigerian temperatures. Get a grip; latitudinal variations, anyone?

  33. I think Africans are the best qualified to decide what they “need”, Oxfam and the rest of the ‘do-gooders’ should butt out.

  34. “More coal will drive more people into poverty through the devastating consequences of climate change and the direct toll of coal mining and burning on local communities, including loss of land, pollution, and health impacts.”
    Prove it.
    If fossil fuels were banned in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, millions, possibly tens of millions, would be dead before the end of next winter. Is that the plan?
    Europe can demand that Germany stop building their 23 new lignite power plants and go coal-free. Make for us a demonstration! Show us how a coal-free national grid works in an industrialised country.

    • Germany has now finished each and every one of their new power plants (which weren’t all lignite). They planned these in 2008 to replace nuclear power plants, not to back up renewables. I believe there is one which has not yet gone online – and may never do so.
      There are no more going to be built – and do note they retired a number of old power plants when they brought in the new plant.
      You may note that they now have a list of coal plants that will close – not a large one, but they’ve started.
      So nothing to demand!

  35. The actual evidence is that without coal, literally everyone would be living in poverty except the tiniest minority of the wealthy. Not 1% but more like .1%. Several billion of us wouldn’t be alive at all. All the world’s trees would be gone. Likewise, every edible thing on the face of the Earth and in the seas would have been consumed. For those of us alive it would be a bare existence of cold, hunger, violence, disease, brutal endless work and early, miserable death. We should pray to coal!

  36. “More coal will drive more people into poverty through the devastating consequences of climate change
    and the direct toll of coal mining and burning on local communities, including loss of land, pollution,
    and health impacts.”
    What they forgot to mention was the name of the planet where that is true because on this one every nation that has exploited coal has benefited from an increase in forestation, an improvement of air and water quality via increased wealth and an increase of life expectancy.
    When Oxfam doesn’t get a donation they’ll know it was from me.

    • I do wish that people throwing around stuff like “devastating consequences of climate change” would: Accurately describe their supposed climate change; clearly post any “devastating” consequences (past, present and future) that logically result from such supposed change; and provide scientific proof that likely increases in future global temperatures would result in “devastating consequences.”
      I suspect that “climate change” is just used as a scarier way of describing increasing temperatures. By no metric has the climate changed since at least 1900. Additionally, minor ups and downs in the gentle warming since the end of the Little Ice Age does not make “climate change.” Global climate remains benign.

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