Friday, July 21, 2023

The Greenhouse Gas Emissions of the Information and Communications Technology Sector

While the powers that be are all over the use of petroleum products for transportation (except when it comes to their use of jets to fly about the globe), there is one use of energy that creates significant greenhouse gas emissions that gets almost no attention from the media or politicians.


In a publication entitled "The Worm in the Rose" by Gwythian Prins:



..the author examines the "green growth" fallacy, observing that a transition to green energy through a net zero approach is a "Veblen good", that is, a good that is consumed in increasing amounts as price increases, contradicting the law of supply and demand.  Veblen goods are often viewed as a status symbol and are consumed as part of a conspicuous consumption/virtue signalling lifestyle.


In reading through the document, I found one section in the chapter entitled "Energy is like other commodities" particularly compelling, especially in light of the World Economic Forum's Fourth Industrial Revolution narrative which heavily relies on the Internet of Things (IoT) for its fulfillment.  


Here is a quote with my bolds:


"Enthusiastic senders of emails and social media messages – including those using them as tools to aid protests about climate change – may believe that the internet behind their screens is saving energy in some way. However, although they travel through cyberspace rather than in planes or on trains, they stand in lineal descent from users of steam railways, ocean liners and jet aircraft as major energy users. The power demands of the internet’s nodal data centres and of the information and communications technology backbone of the modern, advanced global economy may not be obvious to users, but they are enormous."


This is an aspect of global climate change remediation that receives no attention from the vast majority of climate change "experts".   With Prinns' comments in mind, let's look at research into the issue of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector-related greenhouse gas emissions.  In a 2021 paper by Charlotte Freitag et al entitled "The climate impact of ICT: A review of estimates trends and regulations" we find the following:


"In this report, we examine the available evidence regarding ICT's current and projected climate impacts. We examine peer-reviewed studies which estimate ICT's current share of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to be 1.8-2.8% of global GHG emissions. Our findings indicate that published estimates all underestimate the carbon footprint of ICT, possibly by as much as 25%, by failing to account for all of ICT's supply chains and full lifecycle (i.e. emissions scopes 1, 2 and fully inclusive 3). Adjusting for truncation of supply chain pathways, we estimate that ICT's share of emissions could actually be as high as 2.1-3.9%."


To put this share into context, it is important to keep in mind that emissions from the civil aviation sector make up 1.9 percent of total global emissions and the much beleaguered agriculture (and fishing) sectors make up 1.7 percent of the total as shown here:


The authors have three reasons why ICT's emissions are likely to increase unless there is a targeted intervention:


1.) historically, ICT-enabled efficiency improvements have gone hand in hand with increases in energy consumption and GHG emissions both within the ICT sector and in the wider economy. While it cannot be proven that ICT efficiency gains lead to rebounds in emissions that outweigh any savings, there are so many circumstances in which reductions in inputs per unit of output lead to a net increase in inputs that this has to be a significant risk; and one that is often underappreciated.


2.) current studies make several important omissions surrounding the growth trends in ICT. Blockchain is generally excluded from calculations, and Internet of Things (IoT) devices are sometimes partly included but their effect on complementary growth in energy consumption by data centres and networks is not. These trends alongside Artificial Intelligence (AI) do offer opportunities for efficiency gains, but there is no evidence to suggest these create GHG savings that outweigh the additional emissions these technologies would cause.


3.) there is significant investment in developing and increasing uptake of Blockchain, IoT and AI. All three represent key market opportunities, provide a range of claimed public benefits and are further believed by some to enable up to 15% reductions in global emissions. While significant if achieved, this falls well short of the reductions needed to meet climate change targets. There is a risk that these technologies might also contribute to increases in emissions through stimulating increased carbon- intensive activities such as ‘Proof of Work’ algorithms and training ever more complex machine learning models.


Here is a graphic from the paper showing global ICT's carbon footprint in both 2015 and 2020:



Here is a graphic showing projected growth in greenhouse gas emissions from ICT between 2020 and 2040:



If the ICT sector would reduce its emissions in line with other sectors of the economy, it would have to reduce emissions by 42 percent by 2030, 72 percent by 2040 and 91 percent by 2050 as shown here:



The authors have three reasons why ICT's emissions are going to increase:


1.) even if there are improvements in efficiency in the ICT sector, the improvements are likely to be counterbalanced by increased growth in demand for ICT technology.  While renewable energy will help decarbonize ICT, it is not a complete solution.


2.) current studies of ICT's carbon footprint are omitting key sources of emissions, most particularly Blockchain and the Internet of Things.


3.) there is significant investment in the development and adoption of Blockchain, the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence, all of which will lead to only marginal reductions in emissions from the ICT sector which will not allow the sector to meet climate change targets.


We also have to keep in mind that vast and growing amounts of data are being collected on all of us as the surveillance state expands its hold on society.  The storage and processing of this data, much of which is being accomplished using AI, will require increased energy usage.  This is likely to worsen over the decades, particularly once we are living in a Central Bank Digital Currency ecosystem, making it very difficult for the ICT sector to reduce its impact on greenhouse gas emissions.


Let's close with this thought.  Isn't it interesting that emissions from the information and technology sector receive only passing attention from the ruling class given that the sector is key to the imposition of the surveil and control agenda that they have for the peasant class?  Perhaps this is just another fine example of "do what I say, not what I do" that has become so pervasive over the past few years; they need the energy to watch and dominate us while we live in our squalid 15 minute city hovels with our small rations of energy.

Monday, July 17, 2023

Kamala Harris - Combatting Climate Change Through Population Reduction

Sometimes the "leaders" of the world say the quiet part out loud because they so strongly believe their own brand of bullshit that they actually delude themselves into believing that the rest of us share their vision for the world.  A prime example can be found here:


Here's an excerpt from this speech given by Kamala Harris on July 14, 2023 given in a speech entitled Combatting Climate Change and Building a Clean Energy Economy at Coppin State University in Baltimore, Maryland that sets the stage:


"So, every day, all across our nation, we feel and see the impact of the climate crisis.  I mean, if you watch the morning news, it will be the lead story.  It’s been every day for the last couple of weeks.  It is the lead story.  I think we finally, at least in our progress, come to the point that most people can no longer deny it because it is so obvious.


And we have seen, around our country, where communities have been choked by drought, have been washed out by floods, and decimated by hurricanes.  Here in Baltimore, you have seen your skies darkened by wildfire smoke.  And you have seen the waters of the Chesapeake Bay rise, threatening homes and businesses that have stood for generations.


It is clear that the clock is not only ticking, it is banging.  And we must act."


Yes Kamala, no matter what humanity does, seemingly we can't avoid weather.


So, from the transcript provided on the White House website, here's the slip:



Apparently, she meant to say "pollution" but "mistakenly" said "population", at least according to the White House.  In the real world, it's called a Freudian slip which is a verbal mistake linked to the unconscious mind.  It's also Klaus Schwab's wet dream come true.


And, if you believe the White House edit of Harris' speech, I've got some swampland in Florida that I'd like to sell to you.

Friday, July 14, 2023

Sergei Lavrov - Russia's Role in the Global Realignment and the End of Pax Americana

With those of us who live in the West being exposed to a steady diet of anti-Russian narratives by our mainstream media over the past year and a half, sometimes it pays to go directly to the source of information about how Russia views the West and the global reality.  A recent interview with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, one of the world's leading and most intellectually capable diplomats that appeared in Indonesia's Kompas newspaper, explains how Russia's leadership views a "new Cold War".


Here is the question posed by the Kompas journalist:


"How is Russia going to push for achieving a new balance in international politics and what path is it going to take? A new Cold War is believed to be ongoing. What are its ramifications for the political economy of the world? What policy is Russia pursuing in the new cold war?


Here is Lavrov's response with my bolds throughout:


"We do not define the current phase of international relations as a new Cold War. The issue at hand is different and is about something different, namely, the formation of a multipolar international order. This is an objective process. Everyone can see that new globally meaningful decision-making centres are strengthening their positions in Eurasia, the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America. These countries and their associations promote values such as national interests, independence, sovereignty, cultural and civilisational identity and international cooperation. In other words, they are fully within the global development trend and are, as a result, going from success to success."


As the thinkers among us have observed, there is a new multipolar global reality developing with the United States no longer functioning as the world's sole "police force".  Other nations and other organizations (i.e. BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization) are now taking their place of leadership at the global table, becoming ever more important when it comes to the future of geopolitics.


Lavrov continues, focusing on the United States and its new role in the world:


"With regard to the US-led collective West, these countries are trying to slow these processes down and turn them around. Their goal is not to strengthen global security or engage in joint development, but to maintain their hegemony in international affairs and to keep on pursuing their neo-colonial agenda, or in simple terms, to continue to address their own problems at the expense of others, as they are accustomed to do."


Here he weighs in on the West and its foreign policies and how these policies have impacted developing nations (i.e. the Global South and Global East), emphasizing the use of sanctions to punish nations that do not fall into line with the West's agenda and how this has led to the new global reality:


"Unilateral economic sanctions and our Western colleagues’ overall selfish foreign policy undermine global food and energy security. Their actions have complicated things for the developing countries. Enormous amounts of money that could have been spent on promoting international growth, including on helping the countries that are most in need, are being burned up in the form of thousands of tonnes of military equipment and ammunition supplied to Ukrainian neo-Nazis.


Western egocentrism and disregard for the interests of the Global South and Global East encourage the latter to look for alternative cooperation formats across all areas. The seizure of Russian gold and currency reserves in the United States and Europe have led the international community to realise that no one is immune from expropriation of tangible assets that are kept in Western jurisdictions. Not just Russia, but a number of other countries are consistently reducing their dependence on the US dollar and transitioning to alternative payment systems and payments in national currencies.


At the same time, the effectiveness of country associations without Western participation is on the rise. The SCO and BRICS are a case of modern multilateral diplomacy without leaders or followers where decisions are made based on consensus....".


Russia's leadership is clearly seeing the new global geopolitical reality and is playing a key role, along with China, in the global realignment.  While Washington still holds sway over many nations in the world largely because of the importance of the U.S. dollar to the global economy, it's ability to influence many of the world's largest nations is waning as the sun sets on decades of Pax Americana.  Those leaders who choose to wholeheartedly propagate the Western philosophy of exceptionalism are doomed to fail as the Global South and Global East rise.

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Private Jet Emissions in Europe - Lifestyle for Me But Not For Thee

While I'm no fan of Greenpeace, a recent study commissioned by the environmental activists examines an issue that should concern all of us given that the global ruling class insists that we are living in a climate emergency that requires those of us who sweat while we work to make unprecedented changes to our lifestyles.


Here is the cover page of the study:



The group that completed the study, CE Delft, built a database for the study which included information on all private flights departing from and arriving in the EU27 nations including Switzerland, Norway and the United Kingdom by year, route, type of aircraft and carbon dioxide emissions for each flight.  the following flights were excluded from the analysis:


1.) Flights using aircraft with less than 3 seats.


2.) Flights to and from airports without an IATA code.


3.) Flights that arrived at the same airport from which they departed.


These flights were excluded since many small aircraft are used for leisure flights, training purposes or parachute jumping rather than business.  Medical and military flights are included in the study but only if they used aircraft that are typically used in business aviation.


Let's look at the data by year keeping in mind that the carbon footprint of of an EU resident was equivalent to 6.8 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year per person in 2019:


1.) 2020 - 118,756 private flights emitting 354,690 tonnes of carbon dioxide


2.) 2021 - 350,078 private flights emitting 1,637,623 tonnes of carbon dioxide


3.) 2022 - 572,806 private flights emitting 3,385,538 tonnes of carbon dioxide

In total, private jet emissions exceed the annual per capita carbon dioxide emissions of 550,000 EU residents.


What is particularly interesting is the distribution of flight distances by year:


1.) 2020: the largest category of flights is between 251 and 500 kilometres with the second largest category being flights between 0 and 250 kilometres.  In 2020, 58 percent of all private flights were used for a distance of less than 500 kilometres:



2.) 2021: the largest category of flights at 26 percent of all flights is between 251 and 500 kilometres with the second largest category at 18 percent being flights between 0 and 250 kilometres.  The percentage of flights that exceeded 3001 kilometres rose from 3 percent in 2020 to 6 percent in 2021:



3.) 2022: the largest category of flights at 24 percent is between 251 and 500 kilometres with the second largest category at 16 percent of all flights being flights between 501and 750 kilometres.  In total, 55 percent of all flights were between 0 and 750 kilometres in 2022.  The percentage of flights that exceeded 3001 kilometres rose from 6 percent in 2021 to 9 percent in 2022:


Here are tables showing the most used flight routes in 2020, 2021 and 2022 along with their emission excluding routes that are mainly used for medical or military reasons or are being used by airlines offering scheduled flights aboard business jets:



It is interesting to see the huge number of private jet flights of less than 100 kilometres in length and their emissions as shown here:


1.) 2020 - 833 flights emitting 983 tonnes of carbon dioxide


2.) 2021 - 2178 flights emitting 3501 tonnes of carbon dioxide


3.) 2022 - 3093 flights emitting 4953 tonnes of carbon dioxide


In all three years, the most used flight route under 100 kilometres was London to Farnborough and return with a total of 2238 flights over the three year period.  For those of you who are not award, Farnborough Airport is "the largest and most pre-eminent business aviation airport in the United Kingdom". 


What we need to keep in mind is that Europe has an advanced passenger train infrastructure that covers many of these destinations multiple times per day.  For example, the Amsterdam to London and return route, one of the top ten private jet routes, has a 8 daily direct train connections that take around 4 hours one way.  A train journey between Basel and Zurich in Switzerland takes less than a hour, covers 74 kilometres and there are 78 trains daily.


If you wish to learn more about how the global ruling class lives and the impact of their private jet lives on the climate, I would suggest that you read the report which you can find by clicking here.  In the report, the authors provide a breakdown of business jet flights for each nation in Europe along with the accompanying impact on greenhouse gas emissions.

Let's summarize with this recent news:

If there's one thing that we've learned over the past three and a half years, it's that the ruling class adheres to the "do what I say, not what I do" and the "lifestyle for me but not for thee" philosophies.  Rules are made for the serfs, not for the rulers and they love nothing more than our complete and unthinking compliance and for the sacrifices that we are willing to make for their collective benefit.

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Vladimir Putin - The Link Between Uncontrolled Western Debt and the Risk of a Global Financial Crisis

In a recent speech given at this years Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), Russian President Vladimir Putin made an astute observation as quoted here:


Our organisation plays an increasingly important role in international affairs and brings a substantial contribution to maintaining peace and stability, ensuring sustainable economic growth of its member states and developing ties between peoples.


This is especially important today, when geopolitical discord grows bigger, the degradation of the international security system continues, risks of a new global economic and financial crisis increase against the backdrop of an uncontrolled debt accumulation by developed countries, social divide and growth of poverty all over the world, deterioration of food and environmental security. All these issues, with every one of them being complex and diverse in its own way, together lead to a significant increase in conflict potential. Russia is experiencing all of this right now.

Let's look at one prime example of uncontrolled debt accumulation by the West, the United States of America.  Here is a graph showing the growth in Washington's total public debt:



Here is a graph showing the growth in all United States debt including federal, state, municipal and personal:


In both cases, you can very clearly see how the accumulation of debt has become asymptotic to the Y axis, that is, the growth in debt has become nearly vertical particularly in the post-pandemic period.


Governments love to tout the fact that they are still fiscally healthy because their economies are growing which allows for unfettered accumulation of debt without any additional risk.  That said, here is a graph comparing the growth in the economy to the accumulation of debt:



Back in 1985, the level of all debt in the U.S. economy was roughly equal to the size of the economy at approximately $4.4 trillion.  Since then, the two factors have diverged with total debt reaching $59.4 trillion in the first quarter of 2023 compared to GDP which reached $26.5 trillion which works out to be 225 percent of the size of the economy.  Clearly, this is continued overgrowth of the level of debt in the American economy is unsustainable over the long-term and perhaps even over the short- and medium-term when investors and holders of U.S. debt instruments wake up.


While we may not agree with Putin's outlook on many global issues, it is quite apparent that he is spot on when it comes to the risks of a new global and economic crisis based on the West's uncontrolled debt accumulation, a prime example of which can be seen in how the United States debt situation has become untenable.  Some day the ruling class will not be able to "kick the debt can any further down the road" and the world will suffer from a financial crisis that makes the crisis of 2008-2009 pale by comparison.

Tuesday, July 4, 2023

mRNA Therapeutics - Should They Be Classified as Gene Therapy or Vaccines?

A recent paper entitled "mRNA: Vaccine or Gene Therapy?  The Safety Regulatory Issues" that appeared in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences on June 22, 2023:

...examines the issue of whether or not the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines should be classified as gene therapy and whether they were sufficiently scrutinized by government regulators, one of the key questions that has been shuffled off to the "conspiracy theory hinterland" by the mainstream media, fact checkers and government health officials.


Let's start by defining a gene therapy product (GTP): 


1.) According to the United States Food and Drug Administration, gene therapy is a medical intervention based on the modification of the genetic material of living cells. Cells may be altered in vivo by gene therapy given directly to the subject.


2.) According to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) (2009), a GTP: 


(a) contains an active substance which contains or consists of a recombinant nucleic acid used in or administered to human beings with a view to regulating, repairing, replacing, adding or deleting a genetic sequence; and 


(b) in its therapeutic, prophylactic or diagnostic effects, relates directly to the recombinant nucleic acid sequence it contains, or to the product of the genetic expression of this sequence.


Now, let's look at the definition of a vaccine:


1.) According to the United States CDC, a vaccine is "a preparation that is used to stimulate the body’s immune response against diseases."  This definition was changed in September 2021 and previously read "a product that stimulates a person’s immune system to produce immunity to a specific disease, protecting the person from that disease."


2.) According to European regulations, vaccines are products capable of producing active immunity and contain antigens capable of inducing active immunity against an infectious agent. 


Keep in mind that according to the EMA, the active substance in the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines is mRNA, not an antigen which means that mRNA products should not be considered to be vaccines.


The paper by Helene Banoun, an independent French researcher with a lengthy publishing record that you can see here opens with this:


"COVID-19 vaccines were developed and approved rapidly in response to the urgency created by the pandemic. No specific regulations existed at the time they were marketed. The regulatory agencies therefore adapted them as a matter of urgency. Now that the pandemic emergency has passed, it is time to consider the safety issues associated with this rapid approval....


Some of the tests they have undergone as vaccines have produced non-compliant results in terms of purity, quality and batch homogeneity. The wide and persistent biodistribution of mRNAs and their protein products, incompletely studied due to their classification as vaccines, raises safety issues. Post-marketing studies have shown that mRNA passes into breast milk and could have adverse effects on breast-fed babies. Long-term expression, integration into the genome, transmission to the germline, passage into sperm, embryo/fetal and perinatal toxicity, genotoxicity and tumorigenicity should be studied in light of the adverse events reported in pharmacovigilance databases. The potential horizontal transmission (i.e., shedding) should also have been assessed. In-depth vaccinovigilance should be carried out. We would expect these controls to be required for future mRNA vaccines developed outside the context of a pandemic."


As we should all be aware, the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines were the first mRNA vaccines marketed to the public and, as a new class of vaccines, should be subject to additional scrutiny given that they are based on new technologies.  That said, mRNA vaccines against an infectious disease have been excluded from gene therapy product (GTP) regulations by regulations in both the United States and the European Union, largely because mRNA therapeutics are not mentioned in the current guidelines.  


In this study, the author compared the controls required by GTP regulations with those that were actually applied to the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines. and found that because the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines were not classified as gene therapy, tests normally required for gene therapy products were not following including the following (among others):


1.) Long-term expression


2.) Integration into the genome 


3.) Transmission to the germline (i.e. semen, gonads, gametes)


4.) Passage into embryo/fetal and perinatal toxicity, 


5.) Genotoxicity 


6.) Tumorigenicity


7.) Shedding studies/transmission to a third party


 8.) Excretion in the environment


The COVID-19 mRNA vaccines were rushed into production and distribution in response to the perception of a global health emergency in a matter of months with rolling reviews where data is submitted to and reviewed by government health bodies as they become available, prior to the full data package is available to regulators and the general public.  The final trial phases were not and still have not been completed until months or years after the mRNA products were injected into the arms of billions of humans.


According to the FDA, a long-term follow-up of adverse events associated with GTPs must be performed for at least five years for new clinical conditions including new malignancy(ies), new incidence or exacerbation of a pre-existing neurologic disorders, new incidence or exacerbation of a prior rheumatologic or other autoimmune disorder, new incidence of a hematologic disorder and new incidence of infection (potentially product- related).


The application of stringent guidelines to mRNA therapeutics is of critical importance given that Big Pharma, particularly Moderna, is planning to release mRNA influenza "vaccines" as well as anti-cancer "vaccines" as shown on this graphic which shows that several of these vaccines are already in Phase 2 trials:



What is of even greater concern is that Big Pharma is planning to replace traditional vaccines with mRNA vaccines.


Let's close with some additional quotes and the conclusion from the paper by Helene Banoun with my bolds:


"The long-term safety monitoring of GTPs is required over several years whereas, for vaccines, it is generally only carried out over a few weeks. This should not be acceptable, given the persistence of the drug product and the expressed protein. The known results of anti-cancer therapies and mRNA vaccines could lead us to anticipate problems of safety and efficacy. In the case of anti-cancer mRNAs, the vast majority of open-label clinical trials have been carried out on very small numbers of patients, with either unpublished or negative results. Randomized studies also showed negative results, reporting more frequent adverse events in the treatment group...


From a public health point of view, and knowing that anti-COVID-19 mRNAs considered as vaccines have not undergone all the strict controls required for GTPs, one could object that a product intended for the majority of the world’s healthy population should be subject to more stringent regulation than a GTP intended for a few rare people suffering from a rare disease or cancer...


The role of regulatory agencies is to ensure the safety and efficacy of medicines. The COVID-19 pandemic emergency has accelerated the timetable for the production and clinical use of COVID-19 vaccines; it is, therefore, possible that certain safety aspects have not been fully addressed. It is, therefore, important to take these aspects into account in the future, so as not to undermine public confidence in vaccines in general....


In the future, it should be discussed whether all mRNA-based products should be subject to the same regulations and controls, whether or not they are considered vaccines. It is not justifiable to subject therapeutic mRNAs to strict controls when they are intended for patients representing a small proportion of the human population, and to exclude from these controls mRNA vaccines intended for the majority of the healthy human population."