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Unburnable Carbon 2013: Wasted capital and stranded assets and other news and views for Wednesday 18 June

June 18th, 2014

18-06-2014 unburnablecarbon

  • Unburnable Carbon 2013: Wasted capital and stranded assets – “If listed fossil fuel companies have a pro-rata allocation of the global carbon budget, this would amount to around 125 – 275GtCO2, or 20 – 40% of the 762GtCO2 currently booked as reserves. The scale of this carbon budget deficit poses a major risk for investors. They need to understand that 60 – 80% of coal, oil and gas reserves of listed firms are unburnable. … Capital spent on finding and developing more
    reserves is largely wasted To minimise the risks for investors and savers, capital needs to be redirected away from high-carbon options. However, this report estimates that the top 200 oil and gas and mining companies have allocated up to $674bn in the last year for finding and developing more reserves and new ways of extracting them. The bulk of this expenditure was derived from retained earnings – pointing to the duty of shareholders to exercise stewardship over these
    funds so that they are deployed on financially gainful opportunities consistent with climate security.”

18-06-2014 foreword

  • Tweeting progressive politics into oblivion – “If you want to know how the left in Australia thinks, check out Twitter. It will also explain the slow degradation of political reporting into gotcha exposés and personal slurs.”
  • Google and Facebook can be legally intercepted, says UK spy boss – “UK intelligence service GCHQ can legally snoop on British use of Google, Facebook and web-based email without specific warrants because the firms are based abroad, the government has said.”
  • A Balancing Act on Iraq – “President Obama has, so far, struck the right note on Iraq, where Sunni extremist militants are seizing territory and threatening the existence of the state. He has been cautious — emphasizing the need for political reform in Iraq and reaching out to other countries that could have an impact on its fate.”

18-06-2014 wagecosts

  • German Labor Costs – “German labor is very expensive … Yet Germany is a very successful exporter all the same. How do they do it? Not by producing the latest trendy tech product, but by maintaining a reputation for very high-quality goods, year after year.”
  • IMF in warning over Argentina ruling at US Supreme Court – “The IMF said it was concerned about ‘broader systemic implications’.”
  • Eurozone mired in recession pause – “The simplest business cycle dating algorithm declares recessions over after two consecutive quarters of positive GDP growth. By that metric, the Eurozone recession has been over since 2013Q1. This column argues that growth and improvements in the labour market have been so anaemic that it is too early to call the end of the Eurozone recession. Indeed, if this is what an expansion looks like, then the state of the Eurozone economy might be even worse than economists feared.”
  • Van Gaal may actually be as good a coach as he thinks he is – “When I wrote before Holland-Spain that the Dutch were a rubbish team who would try and fail to play boring defence, obviously what I meant was that they were going to hammer the world champions 5-1.Holland’s coach Louis van Gaal cautions: “We still have nothing.” Even a repeat performance against Australia in Porto Alegre on Wednesday would amount to nothing more than near certain qualification for the second round. Yet “the miracle of Salvador”, as the Dutch have dubbed the Spain game, does prompt a re-evaluation of Holland’s prospects. The main conclusion: Van Gaal may actually be as good a coach as he thinks he is, which is nice for Holland and his next club, Manchester United.

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