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Take then to court

Take then to court

RE: Take then to court

It will be interesting to see how this plays out over the years. There are multiple possibilities.
1) Shell (and other companies like them) will mostly pull out of the Netherlands causing a skyrocketing of energy costs and a huge drain on their economy.
2) Shell (and others) find a way to bribe officials, cook the books and manipulate the system so that little changes. Though a cottage industry grows up around how to "follow the regulations" by doing all the proper red tape and reports and such, but carbon emissions don't go down significantly.
3) After a significant lull in the economy (from item 1) a number of companies become very innovative with their energy supplies and energy production in the Netherlands. The free market takes over and you get some really interesting and efficient ways to reduce their carbon footprint. Energy prices do skyrocket initially, but gradually reduce back down to more reasonable levels that aren't such a drain on the economy.
4) Big companies like Shell pull out of the market in the Netherlands and are replaced by "middle men" smaller companies that aren't worth being targeted by the government and lawsuits. Energy prices go up, but much less than feared, a number of small businesses thrive. However, carbon emissions in the Netherlands don't go down very much.

RE: Take then to court

is this for Shell's emissions like in the production of their products, or does this include the future CO2 emissions of their products ?

how soon till all oil industry corporate offices are in China, Russia, Panama, ...

Agree with Josh ... very little will change, prices will go up, CO2 emissions may go down (or just move to another location), middle men will get rich ...

another day in paradise, or is paradise one day closer ?

RE: Take then to court

My father was a well known energy economist and one of the things he said for years (about which others have written articles and books) is that the heavy regulations in 1st world to encourage "green energy" are often counter productive. Meaning, that if Germany (or the Netherlands) makes it very expensive to do manufacturing in their country. Then what happens is the manufacturing moves to a country with virtually not green energy regulations. So, the CO2 released in the atmosphere for those same goods increases. Not only that, but you're now required to transport those goods half way around the world.

I know that comments like this sound "defeatist" like there is no way to win and we're all doomed. But, I do think it is important to realize that when the government interferes in the economy to produce a particular desired effect, the net result of the action is often worse than if the government had taken no action.

The best example I can think of is "rent control" and how it inevitably leads to a lower housing supply and more expensive housing in that area.

RE: Take then to court

"Then what happens is the manufacturing moves to a country with virtually not green energy regulations. So, the CO2 released in the atmosphere for those same goods increases. Not only that, but you're now required to transport those goods half way around the world."

An alternative economic reality.

That's been happening for the last 50yrs. First all the car mfgrs moved to Mexico. Laredo was the largest port of entry for mfgr goods for years. Then the mfgrs left for other parts of the world still cheaper. Gov did not do that with "regulations". Any good capitalists realised that the auto workers union was too powerful and labor rates in the states wouldn't let them pocket any more of that money they were making in the 50-60s. Thatcher and Reagan finished off the unions, but not before industry went packing off to Mexico and England began importing coal from South Africa (or wherever) just as world free market trade agreements opened up to and make all those import duties miraculously go away and manufacturing all stuff in Asia at rock bottom prices became possible. "Regulations" are a much more recent phenomenon designed to force the rest of the dirty industries out, those that could only compete with cheap Asian rates by skimping on new technologies and throwing their residual chemicals into the water supply. Better that they produce tar sands in Canada than mine shale oil in Colorado. Takes longer to get into the US aquifers that way. Better that they burn coal in China than Pittsburg. At least we only get the acid rain. All kidding aside, it wasn't gov regulations, it was the smart capitalists doing their usual thing. Following the cheap labor trail was all that was necessary. The US and other advanced economies are now service based. Cheaper to import mfgr goods. Things change.

In Spain we just tax empty apartments more. That puts them back in the rental market, provides housing and bleeds the property vultures all at the same time. Win, win.

RE: Take then to court


Gov did not do that with "regulations". Any good capitalists realised that the auto workers union was too powerful and labor rates in the states wouldn't let them pocket any more of that money they were making in the 50-60s.

Interesting point. And, it's certainly valid. Industry will tend to move to where it is most profitable and easy to run their businesses. Sometimes it's the unions that are driving them away. Sometimes it's overly burdensome regulations. I will acknowledge that the books my father was talking about (that I had never read) were referring more to Europe than the US.

But, I will point out that there is only ONE car manufacturing plant left in CA, the Tesla plant. Why do we even have this plant? Well, it sat idle for a few years after GM abandoned it and before Tesla decided to build their cars there. Why did they decide that? Well, my guess is this is one of the reasons CA (Tesla's biggest market) allowed Tesla to do direct manufacturer to public sales. Maybe they wanted better control over the end product since they were basically a start-up. Even with all those reasons, Elon Musk has made it clear (a few times) how frustrating it is doing business in California. Just overly intrusive government. He personally moved to Texas to get away from it.

RE: Take then to court

I wonder if Elon got government aid to open up ?

And we have to remember why governments get involved (and regulate). It is because often business makes it's decision in purely business focused logic, remember Victorian sweat shops ? (ok, I guess most of us have only read about them). The point is unions arose the counter-balance the company's drive for it's goals indifferent to how these affect "non-cost" factors. Sure, some companies work well with their employee's welfare and the environment and other ethical aspects of doing business ... sometimes to differentiate their products (as ethically sourced) sometimes just because it is the "right" thing to do but usually at a cost to the bottom line of the business. Unions and government regulation are needed to balance corporate self-interest. We've all seen what happens when governments deregulate (remember Regan and the energy sector).

We've also seen what happens when governments get out of the kitchen and let businesses figure things out for themselves (a la SpaceX)

another day in paradise, or is paradise one day closer ?

RE: Take then to court

Quote (rb1957)

I wonder if Elon got government aid to open up ?

Elon is brilliant. Weird and quirky, maybe a tad unstable. But, he's still a brilliant person. That being said, it seems to me that most everything he does these days relies heavily of government aid / subsidies.

Tesla: Definitely got a ton of discounts for consumers purchasing their cars. Making them much more cost competitive compared to alternatives. In addition to whatever (if anything) they got from CA for basing their manufacturing out of Fremont, CA.

Solar City: Relies on government subsidizing their solar panels and forced kick backs from electric companies to consumers with solar panels.

SpaceX: Government contracts are pretty big for them..... Granted, I think this is a better example of how competition in the marketplace increases efficiency and reduces cost.

FWIW, I totally agree that unions and government regulations are necessary to balance corporate interests. My main point was that we often see these actions produces the opposite effect from what was intended. Too often we judge the merits of a course of action based on its noble INTENT rather than it's poor RESULTS.

RE: Take then to court

Its really very seldom that businesses get regulations they can't eventually find a way to live with. Remember when all of them were complaining about a minimum 25mpg? They kick and scream, then adapt. Actually thinking back, there has probably been more instances of deregulation since the 70's then regulation. Whole industries were deregulated. I remember when everyone's mother was named "Ma" Bell. Or when our choice in television was ABC, CBS, or NBC. There were no others. See. Actually their demise was caused by DEregulation!

RE: Take then to court

SpaceX does it's share of commercial launches, but sure they'll take government money (and other incentives) too.

another day in paradise, or is paradise one day closer ?

RE: Take then to court

There is a difference between de-regulation and anti-trust actions. The breaking up of Ma Bell phone companies was largely due to anti-trust actions.

RE: Take then to court

Yes, that one was, (bad example, but right industry), but deregulation of the entire industry followed shortly thereafter and see where we are with that now. More rubbish TV than you can beat with a stick, free international video + Internet and social media. Now regulation needs to start all over again. Pipelines, electric, telecoms, airlines, financial services. more dereg than reg.

The more you set them free, the more you gotta rein them in.

RE: Take then to court

I'm not sure your argument has much merit related to TV. The consumer now has more choices than ever before. Most of which are very affordable.

A lot of TV is certainly rubbish. But, you've got so many choices like History Channel, National Geographic, etc than you ever had back in the day. You like country music? You've got your own channel. You like cheesy Christmas movies, Hallmark's gotcha. You want Christian programming, you've got multiple channels catering to you 24 hours a day. Sci-Fi channel, Game Show Network.

I guess you can complain about too many options. But, that's generally considered a good thing for consumers.

RE: Take then to court

The point was more that it has been DEregulation, not regulation, which predominated for a long time now. The rest was just capitalists being capitalists.

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