Chancellor George Osborne enjoyed a feisty exchange with the BBC's The Today Programme on Monday, accusing the corporation of singularly failing to report good economic news.
"I've listened to news bulletins on your programme for the last year," he grumbled. "Every time there is an unfortunate loss of jobs somewhere, a few hundred jobs, it's on the news bulletin. I've not yet heard a single news bulletin that says 400,000 new jobs have been created over the last year. That just doesn't appear on the news."
There is a huge amount wrong with Osborne's complaint, over and above the fact that it was delivered with his usual entitled sneer.
As Channel 4 News' excellent Faisal Islam pointed out, 400,000 jobs were created between March 2010 and March 2011, but 353,000 of them were created before September 2010 when the fag end of the previous government's stimulus plan finally faded away.
Moreover, for Osborne to accuse anyone of talking down the British economy when he has spent most of the past year equating the UK's economic health with that of the basket cases of Greece and Portugal represents a quite breathtaking display of hypocrisy.
Osborne's deficit hawk stance and ideological desire to roll back the state is fair enough; he is a Conservative chancellor and his party (sort of) won an election.
But the sheer pace of the spending cuts he is proposing, coupled with his utter failure to deliver any sort of growth plan, are irresponsible in the extreme. So irresponsible that even the traditionally Tory elements of the business community are growing increasingly concerned about the gamble he is taking with the British economy.
But, all that being said, he has a point, doesn't he?
Osborne is wrong to suggest that the BBC, and by extension much of the rest of the mainstream media, is over-reporting bleak economic indicators - it really is pretty tough out there and it is the job of good reporters to tell it as they find it.
But he is right to suggest that the media has an unthinking bias towards bad news and is often guilty of underplaying good news stories, even if they are few and far between at the moment.
The green sector is as guilty of this pessimistic bias as any other. Again, this is not to argue that the media is overplaying negative environmental stories. I firmly believe that environmental reporting is too optimistic in its failure to report adequately and accurately on the sheer scale of the environmental challenges the global economy faces.
It is also too pessimistic in its failure to report adequately and accurately on the scale of the opportunities presented by the low carbon economy. We cannot afford to talk down the low carbon economy in the way Osborne talks down the British economy.
There are numerous examples of this imbalance but, drawing on just one, I have recently been doing some research for a piece on the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI). Even those relatively well versed in low carbon technologies and policies are largely unaware of this hugely ambitious incentive scheme and its goal of using renewable heat technologies to provide a quarter of the heat in commercial and public sector buildings by 2020.
In short, the scheme will largely mirror the existing feed-in tariff, providing businesses and households that deploy renewable heat technologies with guaranteed payments for the heat they generate.
However, the expected rate of return for those who invest in tried and tested technologies such as ground source heat pumps, solar water heaters and biomass boilers, range from five to 15 per cent.
Returns will vary based on location and technology, but from this autumn large numbers of businesses will find that it makes more financial sense to install a renewable heat technology than to simply replace existing infrastructure with another standard heat and cooling system.
Companies will be able to make money, reduce their energy bills and cut carbon, and yet many remain unaware of the opportunity. (By the way, we'll be looking to partially rectify that at our upcoming lecture evening on 29 June when you can learn about many of the green incentives currently on offer to businesses).
As one industry insider observed: "We are really struggling to raise the profile of the RHI. It's the same as the feed-in tariffs where there was little media interest until the fiasco with the cuts to solar tariffs."
This difficulty promoting positive projects and initiatives is repeated right across the economy. There has been a steady stream of largely upbeat employment and job creation stories from low carbon firms this year - the latest saw Siemens announce yesterday that it is to employ 340 grid technology experts at a new facility in Manchester - yet the mainstream press has largely refused to give these stories house room.
Similarly, the sheer scale of the engineering feat being proposed by projects such as the Round 3 offshore wind farms and Scotland's marine energy hub is being massively under-reported.
None of this is meant as an apologia for the government's low carbon policy. The CBI is entirely justified to slam the coalition today for its snail's pace progress in addressing the greatest long-term challenge the economy faces.
As I've argued many times before, when it comes to green policy the government is moving too slowly, pulling in too many contradictory directions, and failing to deliver a response commensurate to the scale of the threat presented by climate change. If I were a betting man, I would currently back the CBI's bleak prediction that the UK is on track to miss its 2020 carbon targets.
But there is a flip side to this depressing outlook. The Department of Energy and Climate Change is making steady progress behind the scenes on a large number of fronts. As such, it remains possible to envisage a scenario whereby in 18 to 24 months' time the UK's low carbon economy looks very different.
By late 2012 or early 2013 there remains the potential to be in a place where the Green Deal, the Renewable Heat Incentive and the Feed-in Tariff have underpinned a boom in the deployment of green building and energy technologies; electric car grants have made zero-emission vehicles an increasingly common sight on our roads; new reporting rules have made it mandatory for large businesses to report on their emissions; and construction work has begun on the next wave of deepwater wind farms and marine energy arrays, as well as the first full scale carbon capture and storage plant. Electricity market reforms, meanwhile, will have sparked investment in low carbon infrastructure, and the Green Investment Bank will have begun dishing out funds.
And much of the 'bad news' will also have a positive green angle as the next phase of the EU emissions trading scheme pushes up energy prices and forces intensive users to embrace efficiency. Airline ticket prices will similarly rise, providing travellers with a greater incentive to seek alternatives, and climbing oil prices will continue to focus the minds of business and political leaders on decarbonisation.
There is still plenty for supporters of the low carbon economy to criticise but unless these broadly positive green stories are given a fair hearing businesses will simply not be in a position to adjust to the changes that will come into effect post-2013.
Those companies that want to prosper in the low carbon economy need to be aware of these imminent changes now so that they can make the sustainable long-term investments that will position them for growth.
Perhaps George Osborne is right after all - it is finally time for some good news.
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