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The Forum > Article Comments > Cleantech revolution hit or miss for Australia? > Comments

Cleantech revolution hit or miss for Australia? : Comments

By John O'Brien, published 7/5/2010

Cleantech is the word of the moment. Everywhere you turn it is being used.

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What utter rubbish - never heard of Cleantech.

I have heard of eco activist and salesman though, and they seem to be forming a new type of animal, we certainly see them more and more on OLO.
Posted by Amicus, Friday, 7 May 2010 11:33:15 AM
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Y'know, I have to agree with Amicus. There's so much bullshot flying about environmental issues it's starting to obscure the point of the debate. The cynicism of the business sector in pitching its environmental credentials is breathtaking. The golden example was when plastic bags became a concern, the food duopoly started selling made in China 'enviro' bags - and still do - that most people leave at home. That's why they still sell them.

It's about the money to be made, not about the environment. There is never a shred of a suggestion that we should reduce what we individually consume. Individual radical action would send the message. Leave the packaging you don't need at the checkout, buy from your local greengrocer, grow your own. The consumer society has made us fat and lazy. We actually believe the envirospin because it's easier.
Posted by Baxter Sin, Friday, 7 May 2010 1:01:19 PM
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I have to say that the ignorance of some people on this site astounds me.

We have an increasingly isolated minority shrilly arguing against global warming, using obfuscation and outright lying to do it, and claiming it is some kind of communist plot - then we turn around and blame the capitalists!

Amicus, you must be living in a cave. Take a look outside and see the hybrids and the diesels go whizzing past. Install a compact flourescent, switch it on and come blinking into the light of the current century. People accept climate change and want to do something about it. The market has spoken and business is providing the solutions - it's called a free market economy. I'd use the phrase invisible hand, but it would only confuse you as it does sound a bit like a conspiracy theory.

Baxter Sin, you can grow your own veggies and people will sell you the seeds. You can also have a rainwater tank to store your water and a solar panel on the roof to provide your own electricity.

Strange old world for the skeptics isn't it. Communism is dead (it died a generation ago). The communist Chinese are capitalists, selling you the solar panels and solar hot water systems and just about everything else and the capitalists are altruists (or at least are following enlightened self interest) investing in technologies to save the planet.
Posted by Loxton, Friday, 7 May 2010 1:46:54 PM
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Several statements in this article are contradictory. Defining "cleantech" the author states they are "Economically viable products, services and processes...." however he goes on to argue that many of these projects are "driven in Europe by regulatory measures and the EU Emissions Trading Scheme" and "Government stimulus spending". If these project are not viable without tarrifs/regulation/taxes then they are not really economically viable in the long term. Surely the most economically viable products, services and processes are those which prosper without government intervention in the market.
Posted by Stezza, Friday, 7 May 2010 2:23:22 PM
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loxton, what's your problem, other than the obvious ..

here, "Cleantech is the word of the moment. Everywhere you turn it is being used." What utter rubbish - never heard of Cleantech

Mate, I'm out in the world and have never heard of Cleantech, it's a marketing pitch for the weak minded who are attracted to anything that smells of green or "eco" stuff, therefore must be good, is that your point, that I'm skeptical of yet another sales pitch that sucks in idiots?

"We have an increasingly isolated minority shrilly arguing against global warming" who argues that the world is not warming? No, that should be successfully arguing against a CO2 big tax and the ALP government has put off the ETS for at least 3 years (we won!) I am skeptical of man's contribution to AGW being CO2 caused. Do you think the alarmists (you) won that battle, boy you really are st...

"you must be living in a cave" no, wrong,I have internet access.

"Take a look outside and see the hybrids" I find them extremely rare and I live in a major city in Australia.

"and the diesels go whizzing past." nope, apart from buses and trucks, almost zero. Go and see how many cars are available in Australia that are diesel powered. It's be easy as they're "whizzing past", and you clearly see them everywhere.

"Install a compact fluorescent, switch it on and come blinking into the light of the current century." they are piss poor at providing light and if they break are an "eco" disaster.

"People accept climate change and want to do something about it." I accept climate change, but am not so arrogant as to think I can change the climate - you must be very powerful! (I'm so impressed)

Your ignorance astounds me. So put your silly little insults and prejudices aside and stop defending a sales pitch, didn't your parents teach you to be careful with your money?
Posted by Amicus, Friday, 7 May 2010 3:32:57 PM
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Interesting comment Stezza. In strict terms, I agree with you that economically viable products and services should be able to exist without regulation. But regulation, for better or worse, is a fact of life for businesses. There is of course a baseline of regulation (taxation, business name registration, fair trading regs, product safety etc) that virtually all businesses have to abide by. Interestingly, even Adam Smith, the great prophet of the free market believed in regulation , particularly of the banking sector. A point that has been made a lot in recent years!

No doubt, there are regulations and stimulus measures that are driving the cleantech industry, but while they drive the industry the individual businesses within that industry are subject to competitive pressures and will fail or prosper individually in accordance with their own entreprenerial ability. For example, there are solar feed-in tariffs in most States, but these do not favour one business over another. In fact, the choice of provider is firmly in the hands of the householder.

I would also contend that the existing subsidies for traditional coal fired power generation far outweigh the subsidies for solar (you just can't see them as clearly).

Also we shouldn't think that the cleantech industry is solely about energy. There are areas of the cleantech industry such as environmental consultants, that exist in a virtually unregulated environment, which brings its own problems for the consumer.
Posted by Loxton, Friday, 7 May 2010 3:53:40 PM
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