“Zero emissions” requires no diesel, petrol or gas-fuelled cars, trucks, tractors or dozers and no burning of coal or gas for electricity generation. But without nuclear power or a massive increase in hydro-electricity, green energy will not support metal refining or manufacturing, and domestic electricity usage will be rationed. “Zero emissions” will also force closure of most cement plants, mechanised farms and feed lots and will demand nuclear or wind-powered submarines, destroyers and bulk carriers.
In the Zero Emissions world there can be no diesel buses, oil-powered cruise liners or jet aircraft (except fleets of climate comrades attending endless UNIPCC conferences). Moreover, 7.8 billion humans continuously emit a lot of carbon dioxide – maybe they plan to make the Covid masks air tight?
Zero Emissions would decimate mining, farming, forestry, fishing and tourism. As exports fall, imports must also fall. Without diesel fuel and lubricants there will be little surplus meat, milk, vegetables, cereals, sea food or timber for the cities, for export, or for immigrants or refugees. Rabbits, kangaroos, possums, koalas, Murray cod and wild pigs will become staple foods and wood/charcoal burners generating “green” gas will again fuel antique cars and utes. Wood-burning steam-powered traction engines may live again.
But we have the “Net Zero” loophole, which is green bait on a barbed hook. It provides five escape routes:
- Buy dodgy carbon credits from dubious foreigners.
- Cover our grasslands and open forests with carbon-absorbing bushfire-prone eucalypt weeds.
- Build costly energy-hungry carbon-capture schemes.
- Chase the hydrogen mirage.
- Log and replant old-growth forests. (New trees will grow and extract CO2 faster than old mature trees.)
Net zero has one bright prospect – freeloading cities like Canberra must shed population and convert their manicured parklands to lettuce farms, lucerne paddocks, cow bails and poultry runs.