Some years ago the UK government agreed to the Kyoto protocol. Several major countries such as the USA and Australia refuse to be bound by it's terms and yet our limp wristed goody two shoes leaders decided that our small nation should be involved despite it providing even more red tape and tax burdens for our ever decreasing business community.
The Kyoto protocol is concerned with reducing so called "greenhouse gas emissions" the commitment from the UK government has seen all manner of ridiculous changes such as the legal requirement to have "energy saving" coated glass in all replacement windows and new houses. This caused so much grief in the once buoyant "window industry" ( I used to own a window factory) as machinery needed to be changed, pricing structures, handling procedures etc. In addition, the government set up a body called FENSA which is an acronym for something stupid in order to "police" the window industry to ensure that they were meeting the new standards. This involved another army of limp wristed inspectors driving around the country checking on window installations. The green house gases involved in manufacturing this coated glass, manufacturing new equipment to handle and process the glass, the administration and day to day running of FENSA is incomprehensible.
The government then turned its attention to motorists. The latest scheme which went hand in hand with the global credit crisis was a "scrappage allowance". I think the USA run a similar scheme called Cash for clunkers? The aim I think was two fold. Boost the ailing motor industry and get dirty old polluting evil cars of the streets. What a stupid scheme. My father runs a 10 year old VW golf which is in immaculate condition and is regularly serviced. It's emissions are lower than some new cars available today and yet his car qualifies under the scheme to be scrapped! Furthermore, we are seeing classic cars go to the crusher in the UK under this ridiculous scheme.
The Government then introduced new "road tax" rates depending on how green your car is. Some cars today are actually qualifying for free road tax as their emissions are less than a cigarette lighter. At the other end of the scale however drivers are heavily penalised for driving anything bigger than microwave oven. I like big cars, I always have and as you may know if you read my blog I have recently bought a Range Rover Vogue. This attracts an annual road tax fee of £440 because the government believe that Range Rovers are the creation of the devil.
This morning I was delighted to see that over 4" of snow had fallen overnight. First I received a phone call from my eldest daughter, could I run her to work as she couldn't move her car? no problem. My driveway goes uphill as do some of my neighbours drives. I jumped into the Range Rover at 7.30 am, fired up the engine, switched on the heated screen, heated, seats, heated steering wheel and waited for a few minutes, all the while pumping toxic nastiness into the atmosphere. I reversed up the driveway with ease and went to collect my daughter.
Mission completed I returned home to see several neighbours desperately trying to clear a path on their driveway to get their environmentally friendly but hideously inefficient cars off the drive. Needless to say NONE succeeded.
If you look at this photo, It was taken from my bedroom looking up my driveway. You can see the incline, you can also see just one set of tyre tracks, they belong to my devil car, the condemned vehicle, the anti-christ of motoring. You may be able to make out the marks in the snow on the right where neighbours have tried to get their cars to move without success.
Needless to say, I have offered my services to a number of neighbours this morning, and have successfully driven two of them to their place of work, The Range Rover has played its part in keeping the UK working today. It doesn't need the services of the salt spreading trucks or snow ploughs and all the associated greenhouse gas that they emit. It doesn't rely on recovery patrols to rescue it. How many people wont make it into work today? How many of those people will now be sat at home with the heating turned to override? How bad is that for the environment?
So the poor Range Rover may be a condemned man in this age of fanatical environment care and it is taxed heavily as a result, but just how well thought out is this Kyoto nonsense? The world is known to have a changing climate, we have had ice ages before. Apparently, the whole of mankind only contributes 5% to global warming, the rest is naturally occurring!