Friday, 22 August 2008

A new, more rational Greens?

I was interested to see the Greens' Frog Blog's reaction to Genesis Energy's proposed new gas power station in Kaukaupaupa.

Naturally, the Greens are gearing up for a fight -- as environmentalists' protests against wind, hydro and even solar schemes indicate, not to mention their protests against even the means by which power is reticulated, they will be gearing up for a fight whatever the means by which a power station is to be powered, whether it's thermal or 'renewable' or whatever -- their opposition is all too obviously to human power as such -- but what I'd like to note is one of the arguments against the scheme used by Frog Blog contributor 'Frog.'

Now bear in mind that Genesis is government-owned, and the Greens to day have been, one might say, somewhat in favour of wall-to-wall government ownership of the means of production, and opposed to the 'irresponsibility' of corporations.

But in the last few paragraphs of the post they argue that it is the choice to build a gas-powered plant that they specifically oppose, and they oppose it because it will be a) economic without a government handout,and b) because "the Energy Data File from the MED says we’ll be running seriously short of gas (at least as far as electricity generation is concerned) around 2015. That’s just when Genesis’ mega plant would want to start operating." So, says the Frog,

Whose hair-brained, think-big idea was this? Could it even stack up economically to the scrutiny of a real board of directors? Or has our SOE and its shareholding Minister lost the plot?

Interesting, don't you think, that question "could it even stack up economically to the scrutiny of a real board of directors?" Is this the foreshadowing of a realisation among some Greens that the scrutiny of a real board of directors is orders of magnitude greater than the scrutiny of a political elite (just look for example at the 'scrutiny' currently applied to one Winston Raymond Peters by said elite, for example, or of the management and appointment of the Hawkes Bay District Health Boards and the failure so far to even lay a glove upon either entity for obviously shonky behaviour). Could it be the first sign of an understanding among some Greens that being able to stack up economically is the very best means we have by which to ensure that valuable resources are not wasted, but instead put to their highest value use?

Or am I just talking bollocks?

1 comment:

  1. I don't think anyone disputes that people who have their pay packets on the line frequently make better decisions.

    I think it's a mistake to think that Green values do not have a space for free market concepts and corporations. Obviously these concepts work at least some of the time. The Corporation has a checklist at the end that summarises what modifications to capitalism would make the corporate legal person less of a "psychopath". ie, account for environmental impact, social impact (ie, sweatshops), and avoid situations where the market mechanism breaks down (monopolies and the like) and you'd probably find most greens have no real concern with what is left. The occasional Luddite who thinks they are green notwithstanding, of course...


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