Carbon Economy


Chinese house prices ease

China is out with its 70-city new house prices measure for July at 0.6 month and month a 9.7% year on year: Top tiers are still struggling but below that is strong: And strength remains quite broad based: Here they are: Stable gains.


Chinese growth spirals into trade war vortex

China’s July data dump is out and there is no hiding the pain now. Industrial production hit the lowest level in living memory at 4.8%, retail sales retraced sharply to 7.6% and fixed asset investment slowed to 5.8%: Under the bonnet, real estate sales continue to fall: With developer land purchases signalling much worse ahead


Here comes China’s next deflation tsunami

Chinese inflation is out and it’s firm for consumers at 2.8%: But it’s all about pork as the epidemic of African swine fever slaughters supply and will thus pass: Meanwhile, and more importantly for Australia and the world, producer inflation is cooked and is about to plunge as the trade war hammers industry: Just wait


What if the world applied “green sanctions” to Australia?

Via FTAlphaville comes the next phase in the fight against climate change: Edoardo Saravalle previously worked on sanctions and economic statecraft matters at the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs at the Center for a New American Security, a Washington-based think-tank. In this guest post, he proposes a different approach to tackling climate


Trade talks fail, China won’t stimulate property (lol)

Some amusing stuff today on US/China trade talks. They’re going nowhere, via Reuters: U.S. and Chinese negotiators wrapped up a round of trade talks on Wednesday without visible signs of progress and put off their next meeting until September, extending an uneasy truce between the world’s two largest economies for at least a month. …The


US coal collapse continues as gas powers on

From the IEA: Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Annual Electric Generator Report and Preliminary Monthly Electric Generator Inventory Between 2010 and the first quarter of 2019, U.S. power companies announced the retirement of more than 546 coal-fired power units, totaling about 102 gigawatts (GW) of generating capacity. Plant owners intend to retire another 17 GW of coal-fired capacity by


Bad sign for Chinese growth as Caterpillar stumbles

Here’s the chart: Note Asia Pacific sales are declining again. China’s excavator sales are an excellent proxy: Though mining has been helping: The problem is realty where private players are preparing for hard times: CAT is a good real time indicator for China’s construction pulse and it is fading despite rising house prices, credit and


Hypocrite Greens defend wind farm NIMBYs

The rank hypocrisy of The Greens has mushroomed, with current party leader, Richard DiNatale, defending former leader Bob Brown’s opposition to the proposed Robbins Island wind farm in Tasmania: Dr Brown told The Australian this week the wind farm was comparable to the Franklin Dam, and yesterday condemned the company behind the proposal, UPC Renewables, as


Bob Brown turns wind farm NIMBY

Former Greens leader Bob Brown is campaigning against the proposed Robbins Island wind farm in Tasmania. The $1.6 billion project will be one of the world’s biggest wind farms if it goes ahead, and a new undersea cable would be built to take the electricity it produces to the Australian mainland. Brown claims that the


Baoshang: End game for China’s debt monster

Nice podcast here from Grants discussing the significance of the recent Baoshang Bank default in China with Carl E. Walter, a former bank executive, coauthor of Red Capitalism: “(Baoshang) is scaring everybody because they’re not the only one. They’re the one that couldn’t hold it together in the end, but… I’ve been trying… to figure out


LNG boom to destroy Earth

Via Global energy Monitor: Through a massive increase in portside infrastructure, floating offshore terminals, and oceangoing LNG vessels, the natural gas industry is seeking to restructure itself from a collection of regional markets into a wider and more integrated global system. If successful, this transformation would lock in much higher levels of natural gas production


Australian carbon emissions keep growing

Via the ABC: Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions have reached record highs in many sectors, continuing an upward trend that began in 2013, according to official Government figures released on Thursday. The Federal Government’s Quarterly Update of the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory for the three months to December 2018 shows emissions increased by 0.8 per cent


Hyenas rip at the carcass of Australian energy

The Australian energy carcass is being torn apart by hyenas today. Leading off are the dying manufacturers: Australia’s big energy users will hold urgent talks with the federal government requesting emergency gas market measures to ensure heavy industry can stay afloat amid opposition from top producers to government intervention in the sector. The country’s largest


The Guardian triggers largest mass extinction since Mesozoic

Is it an asteroid? Is it a plague? No, it’s The Guardian Australia: Australia’s major political parties are facing calls to explain what role they will play in securing a global deal to save nature after a major scientific report warned a million species across the world face extinction. The assessment by an international scientific panel


The Economist: Australia facing “severe water shortage” as population explodes

By Leith van Onselen The Economist ran an interesting article on how overpopulation and climate change are straining the world’s water supplies, with Australia likely to experience a “severe water shortage” by mid-century: Last year Cape Town in South Africa averted only narrowly the unwanted prize for being the first of the world’s big cities


Too many climate McKibbins

There’s one at Domain: The key economist cited in the election row on climate change has doused fears of a major blow to growth from deeper cuts to greenhouse gas emissions, saying the impact would be a “small fraction” of the economy by 2030. Australian National University Professor Warwick McKibbin said federal government policy to


Will China become a giant Singapore? No

Via the FT comes Martin Wolf: Will China emerge as a high-income country still ruled by a communist party state? If China were to achieve this, it would transform a world in which all large, high-income countries are currently democratic. It would reshape the global balance of power, not just economically and militarily, but also


EV debate shorts out

Crikey sums it up: Taylor far from electrifying. There was considerable fun to be had on the weekend with the government’s and News Corp’s attempts to attack Labor’s electric car plan. Bill Shorten’s claim that electric cars could be charged in 10 minutes was seized on by News Corp to attack him, while Scott Morrison accused Shorten of wanting


Gas cartel will destroy EV rollout

Via The Australian: Energy Networks Australia warned in a submission to the Senate’s recent electric vehicle inquiry that growing numbers of EVs, combined with the nation’s flat energy pricing structure, could worsen energy peaks and exceed the capacity of low-voltage networks. “Australia’s distribution networks were not designed for any significant uptake of electric ­vehicles and


AEMO declares 2023 gas shortage as cartel pillages right now

God save me from the AEMO: The Australian Energy Market Operator’s (AEMO) latest analysis finds that supply from existing and committed gas developments is expected to provide sufficient resources to meet demand in southern and south-eastern Australia until 2023. However, additional sources of gas supply are required to address a forecast gap in meeting long-term


How to end the carbon wars overnight

Via the AFR: The centrepiece of Labor’s plan to reduce carbon emissions – a baseline and credit scheme for the nation’s top 250 emitters – appears doomed with the Coalition opposed to the entire policy and the Greens hostile towards several elements, including letting companies offset emissions by buying international carbon permits. If Labor wins


Will Australia allow Shell to eat it?

Because that is its plan. The ACCC confirmed yesterday that the gas cartel is still taking the major piss, via The Australian: Gas prices on Australia’s east coast are set to fall this winter, potentially providing some relief to long-suffering manufacturers and heavy industry, according to data from the competition watchdog. Domestic gas prices may


Coal: Game over

The RBA was out last night discussing climate change and posted the following chart of energy costs which confirms our view that it is game over for coal:   These numbers are largely in line with our numbers on electricity costs from various sources and since it has been over a year since I last


Why is the RBA talking about climate change?

Via Damien Boey at Credit Suisse: Overnight, RBA Deputy Governor Debelle delivered a speech about climate change, and its implications for economic policy. Some key points are as follows: Climate change affects the agricultural sector of the economy. While agriculture is becoming less significant from a GDP perspective, food prices are still a major driver


No choice: Labor crushes gas price or is stillborn

The reason why is obvious at The Australian: Coal-fired power generation would fall by 60 per cent within the next decade to meet Labor’s 45 per cent emissions-reduction target, leading to the likely closure of more than half the existing east coast plants, according to ­independent expert modelling. The closures would bring an end to