Tuesday, March 13, 2007

No point having a blog

..unless people read it! I learnt the other day that people are most likely to visit a blog if they have read about it in someone else's blog. Apparently this beats search engines and any opther form of referral. I got this information from Graham Jones who specialises in internet marketing and optimising your presence on the web. Here's a link to his blog - http://www.grahamjones.co.uk

It's worth a visit - he's always giving away free stuff!

And if you write a blog on energy and climate change issues as I do, send me a link and I'll put it in another post - and I hope you'll do the same for me!

It's the law

...or at least it soon will be. Today the British government publishes its Climate Change Bill which is expected to set 5-year targets for carbon dioxide emissions. This comes after a weekend when the Conservative opposition were making it clear how green they were. Bit of a balancing act - they want to restrict air travel, but they don't want to upset families who might vote for them so maybe they will target the frequent fliers. Gordon Brown has also set out his stall in a speech, making it clear that he's green and voter-friendly at the same time.

The bill has already attracted criticism. Why have 5-year targets and not annual targets? If things are as desperate as the press and politicians tell us surely we should be watching the situation week by week. It's easy to be cynical and assume that climate change is just another bandwagon and a convenient excuse for raising more tax.

My own view is that the whole thing is far too simplistic. The unspoken message is that if we cut carbon dioxide we will stop global warming, avoid climate change and everything will go on as normal. In fact, the only effect we may have is to make future climate change less bad than it might otherwise have been. If we cut carbon dioxide by cutting our fossil fuel consumption we will also cut production of the other nitrous and sulphurous pollutants than no-one ever mentions, so that might be a hidden bonus.

The real threat of course is Peak Oil. As production volumes decline we will be forced to use less, travel less and consume less, but we could never tell that to the voters. As conventional oil declines it's likely that we will start exploiting oil from coal, shale or tar sands. And when we do that you can forget carbon dioxide limits or pollution controls!