Millions of Dollars of Offshore Funding to Promote Carbon Trades may be Skewing Canada's Energy Policies says Friends of Science

CALGARY, March 2, 2015 /CNW/ - Canadians may be misled on climate change, carbon trades/taxes by catastrophic climate and health claims that are not supported by the evidence, says Friends of Science Society, pointing to millions of dollars in offshore funding by a foundation promoting carbon trades.

Friends of Science refer to the Alberta "phase-out coal" campaign which is based on a report by Pembina Institute. According to on-line grant information of the Geneva, Switzerland-based Oak Foundation, Pembina Institute received more than USD $1.2 million dollars in funding since 2005.  Pembina has written numerous influential climate change policy documents for all levels of government in Canada, especially Alberta. 

An Oak Foundation on-line document states that "Oak Foundation has supported the work of many groups in North America and Europe to establish two cap and trade systems."

Friends of Science recently issued an evidence-based report entitled "Burning Questions" which rebuts the Pembina Institute's anti-coal report. In the opinion of Friends of Science, the evidence shows that Albertans are being misled by the Pembina report through its statistical manipulation and omission of relevant facts and context. 

Specifically, the contribution of fine particulate matter from coal-fired plants is overstated by 15 fold, while much larger sources of particulate matter are excluded from the Pembina report.  In 2011, the particulate matter emissions of Alberta wildfires alone was estimated to be nearly one thousand times that of coal-fired power plants; residential fireplaces emitted double the volume of coal-fired power plants. Coal-fired power plant particulate matter emissions in 2011 in Alberta were just 0.4% of human-made emissions according to Environment Canada data.

Pembina Institute's report "A Costly Diagnosis…" singles out coal-fired power plants as the main cause of respiratory ailments and premature death, all based on the "Illness Cost of Air Pollution" (ICAP) computer model that was tested over a decade ago and found to predict that more people died of air pollution than died in total.  

Friends of Science says these exaggerated health claims against conventional power producers are then used by various associates and proponents to push for carbon trades or taxes, or used as justification for pushing expensive, renewable energy like wind and solar, industries that require a carbon trade or carbon taxes to be profitable.

According to an August 2012 Morrison Park Associates report to the Market Surveillance Authority of Alberta, wind power is unattractive to investors in Alberta due to low market prices, however "Wind projects also sometimes qualify for alternative revenue streams, such as carbon credits or other green financial attributes. If these are sizeable enough, then they could make a positive difference on investor views."

As reported in the Financial Times of Feb. 21, 2014 entitled "Private equity retreats from renewables fad," Joseph Dear, chief investment officer of Calpers, of the world's sixth-largest pension fund, is quoted as describing clean-tech investment as a "noble way to lose money."

Friends of Science Society advises policy-makers to wait 2-4 years before enacting any major new climate change policies as there is a 4-fold discrepancy between rising carbon dioxide, once thought to be the global warming agent, and global temperatures which have flat-lined for more than 18 years. Carbon trades and taxes may be irrelevant based on this evidence that indicates global warming is not significantly caused by carbon dioxide from human industrial activities.  

About

Friends of Science have spent a decade reviewing a broad spectrum of literature on climate change and have concluded the sun is the main driver of climate change, not carbon dioxide (CO2). The core group of the Friends of Science is a growing group of earth, atmospheric and solar scientists, engineers and citizens.

SOURCE Friends of Science Society

For further information: Friends of Science Society, P.O. Box 23167, Mission P.O., Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2S 3B1, Toll-free Telephone: 1-888-789-9597, Web: friendsofscience.org, E-mail: contact@friendsofscience.org

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