"It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong." Richard P. Feynman

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Cameron's Renewable Energy Focus is a Disaster

Christopher Booker asks the question with the Conservatives under Cameron trying to out-do Labour in Green idiocy. With some experience in power system planning it is easy to see that the Conservative plan is heading for disaster as the base load generation will never be replaced by renewables. What people should understand is that especially in a place like the UK in winter ,when the power goes off , people ,especially the poor ,will die .
Cheap available power has enabled the growth of our civilization as we know it and in the future power will be neither cheap nor available. The rich elite ,  the carbon traders who promote these half-baked schemes and the middle class chatterati who follow them will probably not suffer - the burden will be born by the poor and powerless , whom we are told will benefit most.
As the election approaches, two issues should transcend all others.

One, obviously, is what the parties propose to do about the £178 billion deficit in government spending. But another, equally terrifying – as this column has warned for years – is what is to be done to avert the fast-looming crisis in Britain’s electricity supplies. With 40 per cent of our generating capacity due to disappear in the next few years, as 14 of our major nuclear and coal-fired power stations are forced to close, how do the parties propose to keep Britain’s lights on and our computer-dependent economy functioning?

The energy policy of the Conservative Party appears to rest on four main pillars. The first is that electricity companies should not be allowed to replace those coal-fired power stations which help provide us with 35 per cent of our electricity unless new ones are fitted with a system to pipe off their CO2 emissions and bury them under the North Sea. The Government has allocated some £4 billion for four new plants to pioneer this unproven technology (to be paid for by all of us through electricity bills), but the Tories say that no new plants should be permitted unless carbon capture is already in place.
As carbon capture is a fairy tale at the moment and in the foreseeable future what responsible Government would bet the farm on it, but that is what the Conservatives are doing.
As an Aussie I feel sorry for the Mother country with the choice of either of two bunches of nitwits - we at least have an alternative to our current lot of incompetents.

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