January 2009

Over at The Oil Drum, a reader has expressed an idea they call the ‘Law of Receding Horizons.’ This pertains to the energy industry and holds that, for unconventional fuels like ethanol and the oil sands, higher oil prices are not a guarantee of increased profits. This is because their own costs of production are […]


The Globe and Mail has a fairly lengthy article about the recent federal budget, oil sands policy, and environmental policy integration with the United States. It highlights the speculative nature and unknown costs of emissions reductions associated with carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology: However, this week’s federal budget provided little sense that Ottawa is […]


President Barack Obama will be visiting Canada on February 19th. Presumably, that will include some sort of large public gathering, hopefully with an appearance from the man himself. In preparation, it seems fitting to contemplate what sort of message it would be most valuable to convey to the new president. With that aim in mind, […]


Skimming through a local newspaper the other day, I came across an advertisement for ‘investment advice.’ Basically, it was someone hoping to manipulate random chance to make a profit. It worked like this: You sign up and, for the next month, you get free weekly investment advice. You are encouraged to either invest according to […]


Jason Scorse, of the Monterey Institute of International Studies, has written a book on what environmentalists need to know about economics. He has also made it available online, free of charge. The first six chapters consider the general approach of economists to environmental issues. The next eight chapters look into specific environmental issues, including climate […]

{ 1 comment }

This Economist article on Norway should make interesting reading for Canadians interested in questions of energy, environment, and politics. It highlights how Norway is both progressive on climate change – with a carbon tax and a grid almost completely dominated by hydroelectric power – and a major indirect emitter on account of its large exports […]


Indirectly, Ottawa winters provide a good demonstration of just how immense a quantity of solar energy there really is on this planet. Consider the fact that the Earth’s axial tilt produces thirty degree weather here in the summer and negative thirty degree weather here in the winter. Walk out onto the frozen surface of Dow’s […]


This David Roberts post, over at Gristmill, discusses the relationships between public awareness of climatic science and the need to take action on climate change. In short, it concludes that the general public will not understand climatic science in the foreseeable future. The critical task is not to make them do so. Rather, what is […]


This is one of the best bits of satire The Onion has produced in a while: Kim Jong Il Announces Plan To Bring Moon To North Korea. It is especially amusing if you are familiar with some of the actual governmental propaganda about Kim Jong Il. I once saw a North Korean press document claiming […]


Whenever I need to wake up early in order to catch a bus or train, I make sure to lay everything out in a clear and sequential manner. That is the most effective way of not forgetting critical items, while also not wasting too much time checking and re-checking things. While, in my case, it […]