Archive for the ‘fuel poverty’ Category

frackareaExcerpt from the Evening standard:

Until a few years ago Europe and America paid more or less the same amount for their petrochemical feedstock — the US had a slight advantage but not so great after transport and other costs had been factored in. (Middle East plants, sited right by the oilfields, did have such a price advantage but lacked scale.)

This is no longer the case thanks to the fundamental changes across the Atlantic. The Marcellus field, which spreads over several states and is just one of many in the US, produces 15 billion cubic feet of gas a day which is almost twice the UK’s entire consumption. But the result is that US prices have disconnected from the rest of the world and the subsequent feedstock prices have given American chemical plants so vast a price advantage that, on paper at least, there’s no way Europe can compete. It is staring down the barrel of bankruptcy, not now, but in a few short years, unless it can find some way to get its raw-material costs down to American levels.

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On Sunday I gave a 10 minute presentation at a UKIP policy forum on climate and energy policy. This was well received and in the break-out group sessions during the afternoon, I found myself volunteered to chair the discussion and write-up our deliberations.

Forgive the wobbly video near the start. My cameraman decided to head round the other side of the room so I wasn’t blocking the view of the screen.

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H/T to GWPF for the heads-up on this story from Climate Change News by Arthur Neslen in Brussels

East European EU states are mounting a behind-the-scenes revolt against the Paris Agreement, blocking key measures needed to deliver the pledge that they signed up to 18 months ago.

Under the climate accord, Europe promised to shave 40% off its emissions by 2030, mostly by revising existing climate laws on renewables, energy efficiency and its flagship Emissions Trading System (ETS).

But documents seen by Climate Home show that Visegrad countries are trying to gut, block or water down all of these efforts, in a rearguard manoeuvre that mirrors president Donald Trump’s rollback of climate policy in Washington.

Energy efficiency is supposed to make up around half of Europe’s emissions reductions by 2030, but a Czech proposal could cut energy saving obligations from a headline 1.5% a year figure to just 0.35% in practice.

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‘Nine Nines of Winter’ begins 

Posted: December 31, 2016 by oldbrew in climate, fuel poverty, weather

Another tough winter for Mongolian livestock? [image credit: eurasianet.org]

Another tough winter for Mongolian livestock?
[image credit: eurasianet.org]


Some unusually tough winter conditions are already affecting Mongolia as The UB Post reports. Herders have started counting the days until spring approaches in their own traditional way.

The coldest time of the year has breezed into Mongolia along with the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of sunlight annually, which [was] marked on December 22 this year. [That] is the second day of the Nine Nines of Winter, a traditional method used by Mongolian herders to determine the date during winter.

Based on the lunar calendar, herders believed that winter lasted for 81 days, and which is counted in nine sets of nine days, also known as the “Nine Nines of Winter”.

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  • smart-meterDr John Constable: GWPF Energy Editor

The UK’s new secretary of state for Business, Greg Clark, has just given his first public speech on energy. It suggests, unfortunately, that he is not yet sufficiently confident of his brief to resist the views of his civil servants. Indeed, this speech could easily have been written for Ed Miliband, or Chris Huhne, or Ed Davey, and suggests that the rent-seeking green interests in the electricity sector are re-injecting themselves into the national bloodstream through an interventionist industrial strategy. This will result in overcapitalisation and reductions in productivity.

It is now a year since Amber Rudd, then Secretary of State at the Department of Energy and Climate  (DECC) gave her “reset” speech. I was in Japan at the time, and showed the text to an impressed but disbelieving colleague from the University of Tokyo. “This is an ENERGY policy”, he said, as if anything from a British politician would obviously focus on climate change and little else besides.

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Electricity prices going way up and security of supply heading down – is this really what people want, or do they just not yet realize where this is going?

STOP THESE THINGS

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America has some perfect examples of what not to do, if it wants to remain an industrial and manufacturing power-house, with a standard of living that much of the World can only envy.

South Australia has set the pace with spot prices that rocket in minutes from $70 per MWh to $2,000 to $4,000 and all the way to the regulated market price cap of $14,000 per MWh, every time wind power output collapses on a total and totally unpredictable basis.

And much of Europe is in the same boat: think Spain, Germany, Denmark and the UK.

From what’s coming out of the USA, Americans don’t seem that keen to follow the path set by countries facing social and economic disaster, thanks to their ludicrous attempts to run on sunshine and breezes.

Donn Dears LLC is among them.

Europe’s High Cost of Renewables
Power for USA
Donn Dears
19 July…

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A new paper published today by the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF)  confirms suspicions that previous governments have misled the public about the impact of climate policies on businesses such as Tata Steel.

There are three main faults in government analysis:

 

  1. Instead of showing the impact of climate policies on profitability (Gross Operating Surplus), the government has compared policy costs to the total expenditure of a business, which is misleading. In 2014, for example, the sector had an operating surplus of £169m, yet energy costs were equal to 330% of that sum.

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andrea-leadsom

Andrea Leadsom MP

From the Daily mail:

In March Energy Minister Amber Fudd claimed energy bills would soar by £500 million a year if we left the EU, adding: ‘The thing about the gas market is you don’t know what shocks and what changes there can be to it.’

But in a remarkable rebuttal to her boss’s claims, Ms Leadsom said today that Brexit would threaten ‘absolutely none’ of the three ‘critical considerations’ at the forefront of Britain’s energy policy.

‘Leaving the EU will give us freedom to keep bills down, to meet our climate change targets in the cheapest way possible, and of course, keep the lights on,’ she said in a speech in central London.

Under the European Commission’s ‘Winter Package’ proposals all 28 EU member states would ‘take on legal responsibility for each other’s gas security’.

This would ensure that EU member states that face having their gas supplies cut – due to political disputes with countries such as Russia or contracts expiring, for example, – would see its gas supplies guaranteed by fellow member states.

Setting out the ‘real threat out continued membership of the EU will have on our energy security,’ Ms Leadsom said: ‘The European Commission’s ‘Winter Package’, contains a number of proposals which make painfully clear the direction of travel in EU energy policy.

‘Two of those suggestions pose a potential threat to our continued energy security.

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POWER-FAILLord Andrew Adonis broke cover on BBC radio 4 this morning to tell us about the new National Infrastructure Commission’s plans for making our country vulnerable to massive power cuts. This will be achieved by making the UK dependent on undersea electrical extension leads plugged into Iceland, Denmark and other EU countries wind power systems, continuing to shut down our traditional power generation capacity and the installation of smart meters which talk to new white-goods everyone will have to buy. A lot of the plan is predicated on ‘demand reduction’ and ‘storage’ (although details of that were not forthcoming).

Enviro-campaigner Roger Harrabin takes up the story:

The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) envisages a smart energy revolution with more cables linking the National Grid to mainland Europe.

NIC also says the UK needs to store much more energy from intermittent renewable like wind and solar.

Fridges, freezers and washing machines could play a part, they say.

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Another power station closing early

Posted: February 3, 2016 by Andrew in Energy, fuel poverty, Politics
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credit: Kirkpia.org

Britain’s energy situation goes from tight, to critical, with an announcement from SSE.

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Piers Corbyn brought a friend, Mark, to the Paris Climate Challenge who helped enormously with the video editing and interviewing work. He runs his own site called ‘Windows on the World’ where he has posted a half hour program showing interviews with some of the attendees at the Paris Climate Challenge, including Niklas Morner, Franco Maranzana and Philip Foster.

WOTW

Click the image to see the video at Mark’s site – help raise his hit count please.

We were unable to cover any of Mark’s expenses from our shoestring budget and we’d like to, as he’s on a shoestring budget himself. If anyone would like to help, please use the donate button in the top left corner of the talkshop. All donations, of whatever size are appreciated.  – Thanks for your help. With it, we can keep on fighting the corruption and disinformation wrecking science’s good name and impoverishing the ordinary people of the world.

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With the news that the Big Six energy companies can afford at least a 14% cut in bills rather than the ~4% they have given us since wholesale prices tumbled last year, and the ever rising tide of #Greencrap taxes added to fuel bills to subsidise windfarmers and landowners, it’s not surprising ordinary folk on ordinary wages are feeling the pinch. Here’s an open letter to OFGEM from Stacey, a full-time local authority employee living in my local area. She wrote this after reading advice from OFGEM to economise in other areas of her life so she could keep paying for her fuel. (Families struggling to pay fuel bills were told on an Ofgem website to save money elsewhere – by making packed lunches and taking a flask of coffee to work, or scrapping gym membership and getting a cheaper phone package.)

staceyDear Sir/Madam

I’d like someone from Ofgem to come round my house in the morning when we try to avoid putting the heating on at all, and watch us scuttling around with dressing gowns over our clothes, and tell me I need to cut costs further.

Comments like this are ridiculous, disgraceful… and insulting.

I already have to say no to many of my kids’ school trips. My daughter knows that, so she doesn’t even ask me unless she really has to go.

The other day when my six-year-old son was given a free book at school he said “Mummy, that’s good, you don’t have to spend your money now”. It was heartbreaking.

And of course they get no pocket money.

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