The Big Problem With ESG


Master Trader
Apr 17, 2013
As you may know by now, ESG stands for environmental, social and governance, which are the three factors business managers and investment advisers are implored to take into account when making business and asset allocation decisions.

It’s a scam, just like the Green New Deal is a scam.

Oil and natural gas are so critical to national security, transportation, home heating and other critical functions that prices are heavily politicized and manipulated for better or worse. The Biden administration has declared war on carbon-based energy sources starting with oil and natural gas.

On day one of his administration, Biden closed the Keystone XL pipeline. He has since banned new oil and gas exploration leases on federal lands, handicapped the fracking industry with new regulations, banned offshore drilling and used regulatory powers to stop the building of new refineries.

Biden has also pushed through green new scam legislation that showered hundreds of billions of dollars in subsidies for wind turbines, solar modules, electric vehicles (EVs) and EV battery manufacturing.

Don’t Tell This to Elon Musk

Here’s the problem with these batteries: Despite manufacturers’ efforts to market electric vehicles to the masses, EV models have never been scalable, sustainable or ultimately successful.

Plus, the problem of producing enough power for a successful transition from gas-powered vehicles adds major headwinds for the EV market to contend with. No amount of marketing can overcome these fundamentals.

The first hurdle is a matter of chemistry. Batteries for EVs are made from cobalt, lithium, nickel, copper and other base metals and compounds. Despite some efficiencies in the manufacture of batteries, there have been no major technological breakthroughs in the specifications for batteries in over 100 years.

Batteries have always been the constraining factor for EVs. In 1905, 90% of the taxis in New York City were battery-powered. In the 1950s, 100% of the East German postal system used battery-powered delivery trucks. Golf carts have been a reliable form of EV for decades.

The simple fact is gasoline is by far the most efficient way to power an automobile. That will remain the case as far as the eye can see.

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More Problems

In addition, all of the chemicals and metals needed to make batteries are either in short supply relative to potential demand (especially lithium) or incur enormous costs in terms of electricity, diesel fuel, heavy equipment, waste and disposal of ore and unwanted byproducts.

It’s likely that more coal- and oil-fired electricity generation will be needed to build an EV battery than will ever be conserved by the vehicle itself.

Even assuming these chemical- and fuel-based hurdles can be overcome (an unlikely assumption), the U.S. power grid is not close to being able to provide the power needed for a fleet of EVs even a small fraction of the size demanded by the Green New Scammers in the Biden administration.

If EV usage grows even slightly more from current levels, we can expect brownouts and blackouts as local and state power grids struggle to keep up with demand.

Tesla customers are already starting to complain about long waits at charging stations. Quick-charge gimmicks don’t help if you’re the fifth car in line for a charge. I know some owners who plan take-out dinners on long trips while they wait two hours or more for a charge.

Simply put, batteries don’t work at scale for transportation. This has been known for more than a century. Nothing has changed.

And for what? The Green New Scam and the environmental component of ESG all trace back to climate alarmism.


Climate alarmism has no basis in observable science. It’s all the result of climate models, which have been consistently wrong about warming because they reflect the biases of their programmers.

The climate change models are garbage (and yes, I have studied them and understand the math and complex dynamics and I know why they’re garbage. They can’t even backtest reliably let alone forecast. Like I said, garbage).

So the threats of “existential crisis” and “we’ll all be underwater in 10 years” are based on garbage.

If you listen to the climate alarmists, they’ll tell you we only have a few years to save the planet. If we don’t eliminate CO2 emissions quickly, the planet will warm, sea levels will rise, storms will intensify, cities will be inundated and lives will be lost to starvation, disease and dehydration.

Every one of those claims is empirically false, but that doesn’t stop the global power elite from trying to shut down the oil and gas industries and replace power generation with solar, wind and hydropower or so-called renewable sources.

Hardly a Crisis

Here are the facts: The best evidence is that the planet is not warming, but it may be cooling under the influence of a periodic minimum in solar flare activity and increased volcanic activity (the two may actually be related), which creates an atmospheric ash layer that cuts down on sun intensity.

Sea levels may be rising slightly, but the tempo is about 7 inches in the next 100 years. That’s hardly cause for alarm considering that sea levels rose 400 feet since the end of the last ice age and humans adapted just fine.

CO2 is a trace gas that makes up just 0.04% of the atmosphere (400 parts per million) and doesn’t have a major impact as far as science can tell, except that it is essential for plant nourishment.

Based upon recent studies, a doubling of carbon dioxide would likely result in a temperature increase of only about 1.5 degrees Celsius. That’s hardly a crisis.

But the war on oil continues anyway, and it’s not ending.

How to Invest

There are many moving parts to this story. Oil has gone through extreme ups and downs over the past five years. The Green New Scam and the mishandling of delicate supply has pushed oil stocks into critical territory.

I believe it’s an excellent time to look at select oil stocks. Notice that I said “select.” Not every oil stock will be a winner, even when the price of oil inevitably charges higher.

I’m also looking at refining and pipelines, Appalachian coal and the Marcellus shale gas region. I believe they’ll deliver huge gains over the next few years.

These are ways to profit from energy, despite the ESG scam.

Right here, I talk about my strategy for surviving and thriving through this storm.

Author: Jim Rickards