Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Let Fonterra die

Fonterra is complaining that the offshore oil exploration ban could impede its plans to switch from coal to gas. Basicly, they're worried about future gas supplies and whether they can switch to a fuel which may no longer be available. So, they claim they'll just have to stick to dirty old coal, just like they do at present. Of course, this ignore the likelihood that it will get more expensive as carbon prices rise, or the possibility that it too may one day be banned, let alone the possibility of simply cutting production to reduce emissions (which, if you believe farmer wailing about forestry conversions and methane targets, is likely anyway). And meanwhile, their competitor Synlait is going clean, using heat pumps and biomass rather than coal.

So why doesn't Fonterra follow suit? I don't know - maybe their farmer-shareholders should ask them, given that the future survival of the company depends on it. Meanwhile, the public is justified in concluding that they're just dirty environmental vandals who hate change.

If companies want to survive in a climate change world, they need to go clean. It's that simple. If Fonterra won't, and persists in clinging to dirty technology, then the best thing that can happen is for it to die and for its place to be taken by a cleaner competitor.