London’s air quality is getting better, not worse


Do you think London’s air quality is better or worse than 20 years ago? Most people would answer “worse”, but they would be wrong. London’s air quality, though bad, has been getting steadily better. The average concentration of particles 10 microns or smaller (known as PM10) is about 20 per cent less than it was 20 years ago and the average concentration of nitrogen dioxide is 30 per cent less.

Matt Ridley

Source: Dash for gas could solve the diesel crisis | Comment | The Times & The Sunday Times


Last year in Venezuela, imports collapsed by more than 50 per cent and the economy nosedived by 19 per cent. The budget deficit is around 20 per cent of GDP. Market distortions mean petrol is sold locally for less than one penny per litre. The country has a complex monetary arrangement that makes use of …


Bannon, by Gove

Bannon’s success has guaranteed him pride of place in the demonology of the liberal left and he’s been accused of every form of hate speech of which mankind is capable, including antisemitism. That allegation sits incongruously, to say the least, with his close personal friendship and political alliance with Kushner, who is an observant Orthodox …


No Bland advice, this

Christopher Bland, who has died, taught people ‘always to make a decision: however difficult, never dither. Of course you might get it wrong sometimes. But if you’re any good at your job, you’ll far more often be right.’ As Martin Vander Weyer points out, it’s remarkable how many people rise to the top without learning to …


Putin’s Russia and 1917

Boris Yeltsin may have reversed the revolution by overthrowing the Communist party. But it’s Putin who has brought the century’s circle back to its beginning. Putin has restored Holy Russia: a society where ruler and church are united, where dissent is treason and where secret police watch for the slightest flicker of popular discontent. Official …


Who owns the world’s oil?

For all the fleeting privatization attempts of the 1990s, governments, not private shareholders, now own the world’s 13 largest oil-and-gas firms and three-quarters of the world’s known oil reserves. Privately owned multinationals such as Exxon produce just ten percent of the world’s oil and hold only three percent of its reserves. Source: The Rex Files …


DCMS press release

Further to my last post reproducing the DCMS announcement, here is the press release they have issued. As I suggested last week would be the case, they have led on planning: Local authorities given more power to control the number of betting shops opening in their area. Gambling firms who want to open up new …


DCMS statement reproduced

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has published a written ministerial statement on betting shops and gambling The Minister for Sport, Tourism and Equalities (Helen Grant MP): The 2005 Gambling Act was introduced by the then Government with the aim of liberalising the gambling market in Great Britain. Nearly seven years on from the …