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2021-07-26

The GWPF (Global Warming Policy Forum) notes the government plans for raising the costs of power in order to pay for EV charging stations.

The point about the switch from coal to oil was two-fold - convenience (oil didn't have to be shovelled) and energy density (you could go further on the same weight of oil) thus minimising the cost of carrying the stuff when used to power transport.

It's true that oil required the additional step of refining to produce a relatively clean fuel, but that cost was worth it. 

Government subsidies to persuade people to make the switch were simply not required.

Electricity has been around for a very long time, however is still tricky to store. It isn't available from wells and mines, it has to be generated at point of use, or transmitted via power lines. So it made perfect sense for railways trams and trolley-buses and powering static homes off a fixed grid, and was widely adopted for these purposes, but batteries are clunky heavy and slow to charge, and the popular lithium-ion variety can still cause fire in a crash situation.

Hydrogen fuel cells may make more sense although hydrogen is also tricky to store.

Bearing in mind recent ill-considered government initiatives to (a) switch us from petrol to diesel vehicles to "reduce CO2", swiftly followed by (b) switch us back from diesel to petrol to "reduce particulate emissions", one does wonder if our all-knowing rulers are in any way competent to yet again impose a new direction of travel upon our currently much put-upon citizenry (let alone upon our national grid), when acceptable vehicle recharge times at scale are yet to be demonstrated.

The GWPF has the story.

2021-07-02

The GWPF (Global Warming Policy Forum) points up the every-rising energy costs that will be necessary to force households off gas and petrol and onto "green" electricity over the coming few years.

Perhaps they are relying on a nation grateful for "saving them from Covid" - but then voters are notorious for their short memories, particularly when being hit in the pocket and driven out of business.

They should tread carefully.

 

2021-06-07

The GWPF report on a new study which claims to verify the accuracy of climate models used to predict the climate in the North Atlantic.

"The basic questions for climate models is whether they realistically simulate observations, and to what extent can future climate change be predicted? It’s an important concept as political and environmental action is predicated upon it"

Scientific modelling has had a bit of a bad press in the Coronavirus pandemic scenario, so how do these climate models fare when put to the test?

The GWPF has the story.

2021-06-30

The Guardian reports that 80% of new coal power generation investment will take place in five Asian countries.

Which begs the question: was it really wise of the UK Europe and the USA to outsource our heavy industries to the East during the last century?

Has it not led overall to more global pollution and CO2 generation rather than less?

Is it not now high time to begin repatriating our heavy industries back to the UK so that we can use the abundant supplies of green energy that we have been promised to create our steel, aluminium etc rather than importing it from high-polluting Asia?

Especially as (again according to the Guardian) renewable generation is now cheaper than coal-fired?

"The report predicts the cost of renewable energy will continue to fall in the coming years. Over the next two years three-quarters of all new solar power projects will be cheaper than new coal power plants, and onshore wind costs will be a quarter lower than the cheapest new coal-fired option"

Or is our UK energy policy committed to the most expensive nuclear and (unreliable expensive) off-shore wind power generation that this Guardian article somehow didn't take into account?

And if we don't actually have quite enough cheap reliable green energy, would not burning cheap reliable gas be far less polluting and still reduce global CO2 emissions overall?

Would that not be an all-round win for global Britain?

2021-06-03

"German government warns of dangerous water pollution and public health threat from heat pumps""

The latest press release from the Global Warming Policy Forum draws attention to a study by the German Federal Environment Agency that has identified the threat from refrigerants used in such devices as air conditioners and heat pumps leaking into the atmosphere, leading to contamination of groundwater supplies.

European governments have already established their propensity to make a bad situation worse (think diesel fuel for cars) through not doing their due diligence and running a full health and safety assessment on the proposed course of action before mandating it on the public. Whilst it appears that the German government may have learned its lesson, it is probably no surprise (given our own government's hapless response to the pandemic) that it is poised to rerun the same mistake in its headlong rush to "build back better" by replacing gas boilers with heat pumps.

The German report helpfully suggests the use of alternative refrigerants but these too have significant drawbacks (poisonous and inflammable) so it seems that more investigation is needed.

Will anybody in our political classes take heed?

As we report elsewhere Steve Baker MP is doing his bit to draw attention to the impracticable aspects of heat pump policy when it comes to replacing gas boilers, and it has to be said that other options such as the use of hydrogen gas seem intuitively more likely as effective replacements and should be properly investigated rather than being tacked-on to the heat-pump narrative in a futile attempt to make this dodo fly.

Before many billions more are wasted on foisting a flavour-of-the-day technology on a public that has had no effective say in the matter, perhaps the government should take a step back and devise a scheme whereby market forces would be encouraged to play their part in giving the public a sensible element of choice about the way forward?