It could be promoted as a ‘green’ solution to the problem – and the Saudis are all about marketing themselves as ‘green friendly’ right now. By maintaining the ban on women driving they are preventing more cars from being on the road. Very responsible of them…
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In wake of US supreme court decision allowing unlimited corporate cash in elections, progressives highlight Saudi Arabia as a country that will take advantage.
Saudi Arabia’s economy depends on oil exports so stands to be one of the biggest losers in any pact that curbs oil demand by penalizing carbon emissions. “It’s one of the biggest threats that we are facing,” said Muhammed al-Sabban, head of the Saudi delegation to U.N. talks on climate change and a senior economic adviser to the Saudi oil ministry. [...] Climate talks posed a bigger threat, Sabban said, and subsidies for the development of renewable energy were distorting market economics in the sector, he said.”
Presumably because of the Citizens United ruling, Saudi Arabian-owned subsidiaries operating in the United States can now spend unlimited amounts advocating the defeat of candidates who support clean energy legislation. According to a ThinkProgress investigation, foreign-oil backed lobbyists in America are already instigating efforts to kill clean energy legislation.
Juan Cole takes this apart a bit, pointing out some interest in Saudi Arabia for green energy, but I’m skeptical of his skepticism. It wasn’t long ago that he belittled the extremist threat in Pakistan as largely limited to the ethnic Pashtun regions of that country, and that certainly turned out to be wrong (though wrong in service of the greater good of puncturing inflated rhetoric at the time about the Taliban being poised to overthrow the Pakistan government).