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« Climatologists raise the shutters again | Main | Damian and the two-degree target »

Decarbonisation amendment defeated

Tim Yeo's rebel amendment to get a mandatory decarbonisation target included in the Energy Bill has been defeated, by 23 votes.

Economic suicide has therefore been averted, at least temporarily. Yeo is calling for the amendment to be resurrected in the Lords.

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Reader Comments (52)

Saw Yeo and Davey on Daily Politics

Yeo claimed his ammendement was important to give "certainty" to investors

Davey had long ramble about decarbonising economy. Didn't say why - just we have to do it

Shale not that important, better to have diversity of supply

Peter Lilley was restrained considering.

Isnt't time for someone in a white coat to lead Davey away to somewhere nice and calm

Jun 4, 2013 at 4:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Shiers

More sleaze investigations started but not including Yeo et Gumball Deben.

Jun 4, 2013 at 4:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterStephen Richards

People likeTim trougher Yeo have absolutely no shame. Pure personal greed.

Jun 4, 2013 at 4:43 PM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

"Tim Yeo's rebel amendment......"

Tim Yeo's Pension Fund more like.

Jun 4, 2013 at 4:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoe Public


Jun 4, 2013 at 4:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterMessenger

Davey, Yeo and Deben will disappear by 2015. Hopefully they will not have destoyed the economy by then.

Jun 4, 2013 at 5:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterIan Neill

meanwhile looks like Ed and Nige were having a bit of a knees-up on the Beeb last night

I liked this bit from Carolyn Quinn "......The Energy Secretary, Ed Davey, has criticised parts of the media for the way they give a platform to campaigners and groups that question whether climate change is caused by human activity"

Yes Carolyn, the BBC could not be accused of such reckless behaviour!

Jun 4, 2013 at 5:14 PM | Unregistered CommenternTropywins

I know I shouldn't say this but it really is time someone called out Yeo even at the risk of a libel action.
I can see nothing materially different between what he is doing and what Mercer is accused of — using his position as a parliamentarian to push the interests of a pressure group and incidentally line his own pockets.
If there is a difference perhaps someone, Yeo himself maybe, would like to come on here and explain it to this bear of little brain.
The fact that he is the chair of the committee charged with some form of effective and objective oversight of the Department most immediately involved in the very area in which he has a financial interest only makes his behaviour the more reprehensible.
"I declared my interest" doesn't hack it — at least anywhere outside parliament. Most of us would have been fired for this sort of behaviour and the local nick might have had an interest as well.

Jun 4, 2013 at 5:28 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

I can't help wondering how much decarbonising Yeo has ever accomplished personally. Monkey say, monkey do, in my book.

Jun 4, 2013 at 5:32 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

Mike Jackson at 5.28PM - I mentioned this as an aside on another thread - I can't see the difference between Yeo and Mercer either. There may be a difference of rules and regulations, but I expect Yeo has used his snout to get more out of the trough than Mercer seems to have done, yet seems to get away with , to mix my metaphors, feathering his nest ready for a comfortable retirement.

Jun 4, 2013 at 5:37 PM | Unregistered CommenterGrumpy

I can see a difference between Yeo and Mercer.

Arguably, better relations with Fiji would be a good thing. It would be hard to identify anyone in Britain who would be materially disadvantaged by better relations with Fiji.

On the other hand, blatant peculation as apparently practiced by sleazeballs like Gumdrop and YeoYeo would disadvantage everyone, apart from the crooks in the greenie ruinable energy scam, whose bidding they do.

Go to Business Green or the Grauniad and admire the comments of the reptiles who are bemoaning to loss of their precious amendment. Apparently the Climate Change Act 2008 and the £16 per tonne carbon floor tax isn't enough to tempt the "investors".

Connoisseurs will like Little Eddie Milipede's tweet:-

"Only about 15 Lib Dems backed their own policy of decarbonising the economy by 2030 in Commons vote. Huge missed opportunity #EnergyBill"
4:30 PM - 4 Jun 2013

The slime.

Jun 4, 2013 at 6:07 PM | Unregistered Commentermartin brumby

I imagine a lot of the "Lords" have afew tracts of land available for wind follies. Not suggesting that any parliamentarian would vote for personal gain of course. Well, except for Yeo, Deben and Mercer so far.....

Jun 4, 2013 at 6:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterDisko Troop

"But MPs rejected the move by 290 votes to 267 after a Commons debate."

Barry Gardiner MP @BarryGardiner
"Thank you to all the Tory & Lib Dems who voted for #decarb2030 target.
If just 7 more had had your courage we'd have won."
4:36 PM - 4 Jun 2013

And if you could add up, Mr. Gardiner, perhaps you wouldn't swallow all this greenie bilge so readily.

Jun 4, 2013 at 6:22 PM | Unregistered Commentermartin brumby

267 voted for yo-yo's amendment?

Good grief! If any further evidence was needed, truly the loonies are running the asylum - it's time to throw out the legislature along with the executive.

Jun 4, 2013 at 6:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

Soon we will be the only country in the would making its citizens poorer through #EnergyBill

The lords are more open to lobbing, this ain't over.

Jun 4, 2013 at 6:55 PM | Unregistered CommenterShevva

We all know why Yeo is in favour of more decarbonisation. Because he is out to feather his own nest with pounds Stirling. But the likes of Davey can only plead ignorance, gross stupidity or insanity.

Jun 4, 2013 at 7:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterPeter Stroud

The Greens need to be challenged much, much more forcibly to prove to us, the public at large, not simply the BBC and Guardian, that the equation decarbonisation = deindustrialisation is not true.

They will find that quite difficult since a significant number of Greens probably hope that decarbonisation will cause deindustrialisation, but they don't want to admit it because if they were truthful about their objectives the public would not stand for it.

Jun 4, 2013 at 7:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterRoy

His constituents in Suffolk South have given Yeo too much leeway for too long. A letter to the chairman of the local Conservative association is long overdue. He must see that Yeo is an utter embarrassment to the constituency, and that Yeo's name is fast becoming a byword for naked self interest at a national level. Yeo must either withdraw from pecuniary interests in climate change, or resign from both chairmanships of the government committee on climate change and the renewables industry association, to avoid the obvious conflict of interest.

This matter will be taken further in Suffolk South.

Jun 4, 2013 at 7:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterSteven Whalley

Cheer up, it's a miles better result than the CC Act when only 3 MPs voted against.

Jun 4, 2013 at 7:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterMessenger

"But the likes of Davey can only plead ignorance, gross stupidity or insanity."

As far as I'm concerned Davey, and his advisers, are guilty of negligence in public office. Which ought to be a criminal offence - ignorance or gross stupidity would then be no defence.

Jun 4, 2013 at 7:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterDaveS

'were needed' doh write in haste repent at leisure..

Jun 4, 2013 at 8:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

"Yeo claimed his amendement was important to give "certainty" to investors"

The certainty that energy costs will skyrocket, the economy will tank, and the investors that still survive will decide to close down or move to China and India.

That certainty.

Jun 4, 2013 at 8:19 PM | Unregistered Commenteralex

"But the likes of Davey can only plead ignorance, gross stupidity or insanity."

I disagree. Davey may be an idiot, but he made one good point in his recent speech. How can he go against 97% of scientists? You and I know that the 97% figure is baloney. But until a substantial number of scientists out themselves as being doubters, the politicians can hardly be blamed for their position. They seek advice. They get it from experts. And the experts are saying we're going to fry.

It seems to be a growing fad for media types to out themselves as luke-warmers. Which is fantastic news. But until scientists start doing the same in reasonable numbers, the politicians don't have much room for manoeuvre.

I know we love to give the politicians a good kicking, but really, in this instance it's the scientists who are fucking things up.

Jun 4, 2013 at 8:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterJames Evans

Cheer up, it's a miles better result than the CC Act when only 3 MPs voted against.

Jun 4, 2013 at 7:44 PM | Messenger

Sorry but the no votes where supporting waiting until 2015 before setting the target, just a degree of difference not an against vote.

Jun 4, 2013 at 8:39 PM | Registered CommenterBreath of Fresh Air

@Peter (nod to @DaveS)

Why not all three?

Jun 4, 2013 at 8:46 PM | Unregistered CommenterHamish McDougal

Hi MikeJ, you say: "I know I shouldn't say this but it really is time someone called out Yeo even at the risk of a libel action."

Well, Yeo seems happy to be told this by Dellingpole: "you've been made to look an utterly despicable, greedy fool, that even the Conservatives in your constituency hate you, that no one trusts you as far as they can spit, that you've done immeasurable damage to your country's landscape and economy with the abysmally counterproductive environmental policies you not only helped promote but from which you may have benefited financially"

I can only presume Yeo agrees, since he has not sued, yet ...

Jun 4, 2013 at 9:04 PM | Unregistered CommenterNiels

James Evans, I'm not sure I agree with you entirely. While I agree that the so-called climate scientists have behaved very badly, you no longer need to be any sort of scientist to see that the CAGW concept is dead. All you need is clear thinking: the temperature has not changed for some 15 years and yet the CO2 has gone up and up. Doesn't that mean either the other forces in the system are stronger than any CO2 forcing or that CO2 forcing is weak in the first place. So the politicains need a little clear thinking (is that too much to ask?) and a bit of spine to go against the grain - perhaps the latter is too much to ask though.

Jun 4, 2013 at 9:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterIdiot_Wind

@Lord Beaverbrook

Luv it. I particularly love how the Guardianistas ALWAYS express an outraged sense of betrayal when the LibDems vote the "wrong" way on a green issue. You'd think they'd know by now ...

Jun 4, 2013 at 10:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterTurning Tide


"All you need is clear thinking: the temperature has not changed for some 15 years and yet the CO2 has gone up and up. Doesn't that mean either the other forces in the system are stronger than any CO2 forcing or that CO2 forcing is weak in the first place. So the politicains need a little clear thinking (is that too much to ask?) and a bit of spine to go against the grain - perhaps the latter is too much to ask though."

If you can see that, and I can see that, why can't a few scientists see that? Until they do, I think it's a bit much to expect politicians to go off piste.

Jun 4, 2013 at 10:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterJames Evans

As noted earlier, only 3 MPs voted against the 2008 climate act. This amendment of Yeo's was just an extension of that original stupidity yet, this time, nearly 300 voted against.
"The times, they are a-changin' "....perhaps.

Jun 4, 2013 at 10:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterMikeH

Good point, your Lordship.

What is it about these people that they cannot use logical argument but have to resort to such diatribes?

And the usual level of ignorance is on clear display: “…the global threat to pale-skinned people posed by ozone-depletion.” I am not as black as some of my friends, and they hate the sun, as they burn so easily.

(BTW, and off-topic, what has happened to the hole in the ozone layer? Is it still there, and, if so, why are we not having more scare stories about it?)

Jun 4, 2013 at 10:26 PM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

@Lord Beaverbrook : please no more Grauniad links. All the wailing and doom and gloom in the comments section of that article had me laughing so much I almost fell of my chair!

Jun 4, 2013 at 10:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterFarleyR

The Energy Bill, even without the amendment, is still an utter disaster. As GWPF has picked up, the Wal Street Journal concludes

'The U.K.’s 2013 energy bill is up for a key vote Tuesday, and even the best-case outcome is likely to hurt an already weak British economy. Three years into David Cameron’s five-year term as Prime Minister, growth is at a standstill, government deficits remain stubbornly high, and Mr. Cameron’s Conservatives are on track for a stinging defeat at the polls. Yet Mr. Cameron and his Liberal Democrat coalition partners seem intent on pursuing the economic folly of total “decarbonization” of the British economy. Voters could be forgiven if they haven’t noticed how crazy this policy is.'

Jun 4, 2013 at 10:37 PM | Registered CommenterPharos

No mention of this at all on the BBC news at 10.

Jun 4, 2013 at 10:37 PM | Registered CommenterPaul Matthews

I agree whole-heartedly with you, James Evans. I am no scientist, but even my Arts-educated brain knows a dud theory when it sees one. NO rise in warming at the same time as a measurable rise in atmospheric co2 over the time period the sainted IPCC told us would need to elapse before we could spot 'significance' should be enough of a tell-tale for even the most timid sciency person to sniff a very dead and rotting rat somewhere and start looking for the corpse, sealed dust-bin in hand ready to receive said corpse.
And all of the super-educated statistical waffle about significance and/or lack of same with regard to the stalled rate of warming is, it appears to me, as empty as the argument about the number of angels one can fit on a pin-head. The scary CAGW theory must be at least 97% full of holes by now and it's zombie-like survival should have us all laughing while we peasants sharpen our pitchforks in preparation for demanding the end of the incredibly expensive life-threatening nonsense and a return to sanity.

Jun 4, 2013 at 10:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlexander K

Pleased to see this outcome.

Today, I watched some of the debate on BBC Parliament. I was impressed by a conservative MP called Mark Reckless.

He was very good on why the Government projects that renewables will lead to lower energy prices in the future, ie., it was because the governments projections are based upon a comparison of renewables against the costs of fossil fuel production upon which a carbon tax is being imposed; initially at £16 per tonnes of CO2 but escalating up to about £500 per tonne as the years go by. Obviously with such a tax, energy production from fossil fuel will become increasingly more expensive thereby rendering renewables cheaper than fossil fuel. But this is only the consequence of the tax, not because renewables will become cheaper or more efficient. He pointed out that there was no reason for such tax and that in Europe, the equivalent 'tax' is being traded on the market at about £2 per tonne.

From what little I saw of the debate, he sounded quite reasonable and had a grasp on the economics of renewables. I would suggest that it might be worthwhile writing to Mark Reckless to give him a bit of support.To let him know that he is on the right track. Irrespective of that, I consider that he is a person to look out for.

Jun 4, 2013 at 11:01 PM | Unregistered Commenterrichard verney

James Evans (8:20PM, 10:03 PM). Perhaps this piece at WUWT will help you get a more realistic perspective on the number of scientists who are not in the claimed consensus

Jun 4, 2013 at 11:02 PM | Registered CommenterJohn Shade



And spouting the same sort of rubbish as usual.

Jun 4, 2013 at 11:25 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

John Shade,

I don't need "a more realistic perspective on the number of scientists who are not in the claimed consensus".

I understand the situation. I understand that there are many scientists who have doubts. (Really, am I a complete stranger to you? Was the point of my post that confusing?)

The point is, when will a substantial number of scientists stand up and start shouting about this? Until that happens, the politicians have a perfect out. They are asking for advice, and they are getting it. From experts.

We all know that there are vast numbers of scientists who have genuine concerns about AGW theory. But until they actually stand up and say something, the politicians have every right to plough on with the insanity.

Jun 4, 2013 at 11:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterJames Evans

Radical Rodent

You no longer hear scare stories about ozone depletion because it was recognised as a problem and something was done about it.

Of course, there was not a wealthy and well organised interest group lobbying and spreading disinformation against a ban on CFCs.......

Jun 4, 2013 at 11:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic Man

Radical Rodent and ozone question,

The best defenestration [Ozone depletion scam] I've come across is this one by Memoryvault an accomplished and extremely experienced engineer who speaks a lot of sense and who has a very knowledgeable, forensic mind.....and it echoes my sentiments entirely - the whole thing was a total fit up and he puts it far better than me:

There are no “holes” in the ozone layer, as there IS NO ozone layer except as an imaginary mathematical construct. A “Dobson Unit” measures the amount of ozone in a column of air from ground level to the outer reach of the atmosphere. It is then assumed that all this ozone exists as a “layer” at sea level at zero deg C.

Most atmospheric ozone occurs as a result of sunlight striking O2 molecules. Obviously this happens most where the two meet – at the outer reaches of the atmosphere, but it can also occur at any altitude. Equally obviously, it DOESN’T happen if either of the two basic ingredients are missing – that is, sunlight or oxygen.

In case nobody noticed you folk have just finished winter up there in the NH. Winter in the Arctic Circle means NO sunlight. No sunlight means NO ozone. In fact, if it weren’t for the winds from places outside the Arctic Circle (you know – where the sun shines), there would be NO ozone at the Polar Regions at the end of their respective winters.

The fact that there is some is what Professor Gordon Dobson used to prove the existence of the upper atmospheric winds for which he was awarded the International Geophysical Man of the Year award in 1957. It is also why he invented the Dobson Spectrophotometer which measures ozone in Dobson Units which we still use today.

About the only factual comment in your article was the first sentence:

“This record low was caused by unusually strong winds, known as the polar vortex, which isolated the atmospheric mass over the North Pole and prevented it from mixing with air in the mid-latitudes”.

No mixing of air from where the sun shines = no ozone in the Arctic region where the sun hasn’t been shining. End of story. QED. No need for all the thoroughly discredited crap about cold air masses releasing chlorine and bromine from CFC’s.

Like the CAGW scam the “CFC’s are destroying the ozone layer” scam was a scam designed to make certain parties a great deal of money. It succeeded.

Jun 4, 2013 at 11:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

EM what information was circulated for the ban?

Jun 4, 2013 at 11:54 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim

A patent soon expiring met a chemical equation speculating. Their union was blessed by a new observatory, neither propitious nor proprietary. Oh, the twilight zone.

Jun 4, 2013 at 11:58 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim

I agree with all those who have trashed Yeo, his behaviour is beyond belief, however the problem is more widespread. The parliamentary rules about members interests not only require that a member discloses that he has a financial interest in a topic on which he speaks, it also requires him to state exactly what that interest is, Yeo never does this so why does parliament not act?
Davey can be torn apart on THREE counts (not that he cares of course); first that any examination of the scientific facts should tell him that CO2 is not warming the planet. Second that because almost no other country is taking action on CO2 then any and all actions taken by the UK would be meaningless even if they mattered.
Finally even if CO2 was going to fry us all, if the rest of the world is is concentrating on boosting their economies and the wealth of their citizens, why do we have to be the only ones who fry in poverty?

Jun 5, 2013 at 3:55 AM | Registered CommenterDung

"Of course, there was not a wealthy and well organised interest group lobbying and spreading disinformation against a ban on CFCs......."

Any facts and figures to follow those dots EM? Nonsensical innuendo otherwise. Especially on a thread about Yeo, whose financial motivations for pushing decarbonisation are on the public record.

One view on ozone here:

Another one here:

Jun 5, 2013 at 5:40 AM | Unregistered Commenternot banned yet

Despite all the hype Yeo's amendment was defeated by a decent majority (27).

Yet only five years ago the Climate Change Act was passed by an overwhelming majority - only three votes against

And it's been downhill all the way for green campaigners ever sine that high point. Yesterday's vote just shows that the political pendulum has now swung into the 'against' category after years of being 'for'.

So why the change?

1. The stubborn refusal of the globe to warm in any way that meaningfully affects our lives. Children leaving school this summer at 16 will never have experienced 'global warming' in their lifetime. It is as foreign a concept to them as the Cold War or steam trains..a quaint historic artefact, but nothing of any contemporary value or relevance.

2. The overhyping of Copenhagen. So much hoopla beforehand, such a visible and abject failure delivered.
So much egg on faces, so much humiliation that nothing remotely like it can ever be tried again until all this generation of political leaders have retired.

3. Climategate. The gift that keeps on giving. So much of the 'climate change' story relied on the idea 'Trust Us, We're Climate Scientists'. But Climategate showed that they are no less venal or ambitious or prepared to cut corners and bend the rules than anybody else. 'Trust Us We're Climate Scientists' went out of the window. And without that, there ain't a lot left of the story.

4. The economy and ever rising energy bills. When people have lots of money they can indulge in 'feelgood' wishy washy things like 'saving the planet'. But when they don't they concentrate on more immediate things. And even if they believe in the faint possibility that it'll be a bit warmer in 100 years fades into insignificance when the electricity bill has to be paid.

5. Politicians aren't stupid. They know an election is coming up. Those who want to keep their seats recognise that their opportunities for 'grand gestures of petty virtue' are declining. And that popular concern about 'climate change' continues to decline. It is yesterday's creed, trumpeted by yesterday's men.

Jun 5, 2013 at 7:50 AM | Unregistered CommenterLatimer Alder

Further to: Jun 4, 2013 at 9:57 PM | Idiot_Wind

When discussing climate sensitivity, I have on a number of occassions pointed out that we know from observational data, that natural variability can be at least as strong as any CO2 forcing. For example:

i) The 1940s to 1970s cooling; during this period negative forcings of natural variation exceeded the positive forcing effect (if any) of rising CO2 levels, such that it did not simply cancel it out, it overwhelmed it thereby forcing temperatures downwards.

ii) The present stasis (of about 14 to 22 years dependennt upon data set used); during this period the negative forcings of natural variation has equalled the positive forcing effect (if any) of rising CO2 levels thereby cancelling out the CO2 forcing (if any) resulting in steady temperatures.

I consider that, as a matter of logic, one cannot asess climate sensitivity until absolutely everything is known and understood about natural variatiions, one forces this comprises of, in which direction they work, and the upper and lower bounds of each and every constituent forcing. Until one possesses this knowledge and understanding of the system it is not possible to eliminate which temperature changes in the teemperature data sets is due to natural variation and which changes are not. Until we can do that with certainty, we cannot extract the signal of CO2 forcings from the noise of natural variation.

Presently, what we know about natural variation is that it can be equal or even stronger than any forcing effect from CO2. But we do not know whether this tells us about the strength of natural variability, or the weakness of CO2.

Jun 5, 2013 at 8:51 AM | Unregistered Commenterrichard verney

@ Paul Matthews
- Yes strange I have heard no mentions in many hours of BBC news Radio
The story is on the website buried away at the bottom of the Sci-Environment page under the title "Government sees off carbon rebellion"
- Not a turn around from the CC Act : to pass this ACT without Carbon Targets was the government bill .. so again most MP's were just voting with the government

Jun 5, 2013 at 9:32 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Thank you for your responses about ozone. To remain slightly off-topic (and the reason may become clear): I was always slightly sceptical about the ozone “hole” over the South Pole, and its cause being human produced CFCs (anyone noticing any similarities, yet?). The reason for my scepticism was that, as the majority of humans live north of the equator, it would be logical that the maximum amount of CFCs would be released in that hemisphere. As there is not a vast amount of air-swap between the two hemispheres, I was puzzled as to why there was no “hole” over the North Pole; for this reason, scientists were desperately trying to find one, to no avail. Then a science programme (this was in the days when the TV companies actually did progs approaching real science) exposed Mount Cerebus, in Antarctica, which was (and, presumably, still is) pumping out tonnes and tonnes of chlorine (the first “C” of CFC), which is bounces around the atmosphere, knocking the O off ozone, rendering it mere oxygen.

Given the success of the lobbyists in getting CFCs banned as the propellant in aerosols in this scare story, and the resultant “solution” of the threat to ozone, I suspect that this has inspired others (or, perhaps, the same people, after their own giddy success in establishing some sort of control over the population, to shift their focus elsewhere) to try other, similar ideas. This time, make it even bigger, better, and a more serious threat – the end of the world!

Perhaps the “ozone hole” was just a test, to see just how gullible the general muggins’s of the world are?

(BTW, I read somewhere that the ozone “hole” is being touted as the reason why the ice of Antarctica is expanding, as it counters the effects of the CO2 in some strange way)

Jun 5, 2013 at 10:23 AM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

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