Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Planned nuclear power station at Hinkley Point


Another headache to add to the list for the UK’s struggling nuclear power ambitions, at a time when its coal-fired plants are closing fast.

China General Nuclear Power partnered with EDF to help fund a third of the £20bn cost of the nuclear power plant being built in Somerset, says Energy Live News.

A state-owned Chinese company which is funding part of the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station in the UK has been placed on a US export blacklist.

The US Department of Commerce has placed China General Nuclear Power Group (CGN) to its “entity list”, which effectively blocks US companies from selling products and services to the firm without written approval.

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Solar panel road [image credit: Wattway]


The rotting leaves didn’t help, says ScienceAlert. Neither did the local tractors. Solar panels should be angled towards the Sun anyway, but that kills the whole road idea.

In July, the French daily newspaper Le Monde reported that the 0.6-mile (1 kilometre) solar road was a fiasco.

In December 2016, when the trial road was unveiled, the French Ministry of the Environment called it “unprecedented”. French officials said the road, made of photovoltaic panels, would generate electricity to power streetlights in Tourouvre, a local town.

But less than three years later, a report published by Global Construction Review says France’s road dream may be over.

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Energy firm Cuadrilla resumes fracking

Posted: August 15, 2019 by oldbrew in Energy, fracking, News, Shale gas
Tags:

Note the deep shaft


Another attempt to convince a so-far reluctant UK government that shale gas work is far from being the pantomime villain that protesters want them to imagine it is. Insisting that ‘tremors’ far smaller than allowed in other comparable UK industries merit stoppages is unreasonable to say the least.

Energy firm Cuadrilla has resumed fracking at its site in Lancashire, it has confirmed.

Drilling began at the Preston New Road site in October but operations were halted on a number of occasions due to underground tremors, reports BBC News.

No fracking has taken place on the site since December.

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Credit: BBC


What happened to the ‘unprecedented’, ‘new normal’ hot weather that blew in from north Africa for a few days, then blew away again? Or was that just the media and warmist climate pundits shooting the breeze for yet another opportunistic headline? In any case it looks as if the Great British Summer is now back to its usual erratic self, but becoming somewhat wetter than the seasonal average.

Thunderstorms and heavy downpours are set to hit the UK this week, as Brits face what could be one of the wettest Augusts on record, says the Evening Standard.

Severe thunderstorm warnings are in place for London and the south east on Monday, with the chance of flooding, travel disruption and power cuts, the Met Office warns.

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Image credit: thecount.com


H/T The Global Warming Policy Forum (GWPF)

Some stories of Londoners stumbling around in the gloom or stranded on non-moving trains here. Obviously any emergency back-up either wasn’t there or proved ineffective.

Enappsys, an energy consultancy, said the blackout may have been caused by the unexpected shutdowns of the Hornsea offshore wind farm and the Little Barford gas-fired power plant, reports The Guardian.

Large parts of England and Wales have been left without electricity following a major power cut, electricity network operators have said, with a serious impact reported on rail and road services, including city traffic lights.

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They call it ‘the world’s most ambitious project‘. Mind-boggling expenditure if it ever gets built. The solar city aspect of the plan gets panned here.

The riches of Silicon Valley have enabled some extravagant and quixotic projects, but they’ve got nothing on what oil money can do, says MNNOFA News.

A new report from The Wall Street Journal shares some of the proposals for Saudi Arabia’s biggest megaproject yet: a city built in the desert named Neom, where robots will outnumber humans and hologram teachers will educate genetically-enhanced students.

The details are stunning. It’s a mixture of dystopian fiction (AI surveillance cameras everywhere!) and childish imaginings (let’s build a robot dinosaur park!). Taken together, the plans remind of you what a dedicated nine-year-old can achieve in Minecraft. Yes, the scale and ambition are impressive, but it’s not like you could do this in real life, right?

Cloud seeding? Robot servants? A fake moon!? Sure, why not.

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Credits: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/Chris Smith


Following the report we analyse the orbital data for evidence of resonances.

A planet discovered by NASA’s TESS has pointed the way to additional worlds orbiting the same star, one of which is located in the star’s habitable zone, reports SciTechDaily.

If made of rock, this planet may be around twice Earth’s size.

The new worlds orbit a star named GJ 357, an M-type dwarf about one-third the Sun’s mass and size and about 40% cooler that our star. The system is located 31 light-years away in the constellation Hydra.

In February, TESS cameras caught the star dimming slightly every 3.9 days, revealing the presence of a transiting exoplanet — a world beyond our solar system — that passes across the face of its star during every orbit and briefly dims the star’s light.

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So, a meeting of some of the world’s top climate experts? Not quite – more like a jet-set summerfest, but hosted by an internet tech giant. What was that about ‘carbon footprints’?

The Duke of Sussex gave an impassioned speech on the environment to an elite audience of business leaders and celebrities gathered at Google’s top-secret annual retreat in Sicily, reports the Evening Standard.

Prince Harry is understood to have insisted climate change is a humanitarian issue, not a political one as he gave the address – while reportedly barefoot.

Leonardo DiCaprio and Naomi Campbell are understood to have been among the crowd of VIPS and and power-brokers at the summer conference dubbed ‘Davos-on-Sea’ with Katy Perry, Harry Styles, Karlie Kloss and Bradley Cooper also said to have been on the confidential guest list.

Chris Martin gave a performance at night amid the brightly-lit ruins.

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Oxford Circus climate demo [image credit: London Evening Standard]


So does the manufactured climate alarm due to a minor trace gas in the atmosphere, but this is the world we find ourselves in.

A lawyer representing hundreds of Extinction Rebellion protesters said it “beggars belief” so many of them are being prosecuted, reports the Evening Standard. 

It comes as two courtrooms are being set aside for a day each week at Westminster Magistrates’ Court for 19 weeks, to deal with Extinction Rebellion protesters arrested in mass demonstrations across the capital.

Around 35 protesters are due to appear at City of London magistrates’ court on Friday, while it is thought more than 50 will be summonsed every Friday in August.

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Lift-off is scheduled for 2:51GMT on the 15th July 2019

Our friends Ned Nikolov and Karl Zeller will be keen to see the data from the Chandrayaan 2 lunar mission scheduled for take-off next week. Among many other experiments planned, the rover will be measuring surface thermal conductivity – a key factor in estimating the global lunar surface temperature.

The daily mail reports:

India’s space agency is preparing to launch its ambitious Chandrayaan-2 mission next week which is set to land near the currently unexplored south pole of the moon.

Chandrayaan-2 will blast off from the Satish Dhawan Space Center at Sriharikota on the country’s south west coast at 2.51am (10.21pm BST) on July 15.

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In short: polar bear scares by climate alarm propaganda merchants are busted.

polarbearscience

Straight from the horse’s mouth: all polar bear females tagged by researchers around Churchill in Western Hudson Bay last year were still on the ice as of 25 June. With plenty of ice still remaining over the bay, spring breakup will be no earlier this year than it has been since 1999. Contrary to predictions of ever-declining ice cover, the lack of a trend in sea ice breakup dates for Western Hudson Bay is now twenty years long (a hiatus, if you will) and yet these bears are repeatedly claimed to have been seriously harmed in recent years by a loss of sea ice.

Derocher 2019 WHB collared females 25 June all bears still on the ice

In fact, WH bears have faced relatively few ‘early’ years of sea ice breakup and breakup has never come before the 15th of June. The earliest recent spring breakup date did not come in 2012 – when sea ice hit a summer record low – but…

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These UN delegates won’t want to hear about the latest paper from Professor Zharkova et al, which forecasts a natural rise in global temperatures until 2600 that is much higher than the arbitrary 1.5C ‘target’ they think they can buy for themselves, at vast public expense of course, by playing around with the trace gas content of the atmosphere. But, secure in their echo chamber of man-made warming beliefs and the conviction they are somehow able to control the Earth’s climate, the chances are they either won’t hear of the new research or will ignore it anyway.

A “triple whammy” of events threatens to hamper efforts to tackle climate change say UN delegates, says BBC News.

At a meeting in Bonn, Saudi Arabia has continued to object to a key IPCC scientific report that urges drastic cuts in carbon emissions.

Added to that, the EU has so far failed to agree to a long term net zero emissions target.

Thirdly, a draft text from the G20 summit in Japan later this week waters down commitments to tackle warming.

One attendee in Bonn said that, taken together, the moves represented a fierce backlash from countries with strong fossil fuel interests.

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sceptic smiley
This looks like an obvious propaganda opportunity for the usual ambulance-chasing climate alarm suspects. If warm weather blows in from the Sahara desert it must be your fault…type of thing. But for many Brits at least it will make a change from some recent cool and miserable June weather, while the French recall problems arising from a hot summer sixteen years ago.

Temperatures were climbing on Sunday as Europe braced for a blistering heatwave with the mercury set to hit 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) as summer kicks in on the back of a wave of hot air from North Africa, reports Phys.org.

Europeans are set to bake in what forecasters are warning will likely be record-breaking temperatures for June with the mercury set to peak mid-week.

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Time to go


London’s Mansion House will no doubt have to employ its own bouncers to protect the bigwigs at its supposedly invitation-only events in future, saving unprotected government ministers from unseemly extra ‘duties’.

Mark Field has been suspended as a Foreign Office minister after grabbing a female Greenpeace activist at a black-tie City dinner, reports BBC News.

The MP has apologised for confronting Janet Barker and marching her away as protesters interrupted a speech by Chancellor Philip Hammond.

But he said he had been “genuinely worried” she may have been armed.

Ms Barker told the BBC he should “reflect on what he did” and suggested he “go to anger management classes”.

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Porto Santo airport


This tiny island near Madeira has an area of 16.28 square miles but gets a flying visit from the BBC’s leading climate alarm advocate Roger Harrabin, no doubt in a fuel-burning aeroplane or two. Has he checked his ‘carbon footprint’ lately? 😎
The idea was to give a plug (sorry) to an electric car experiment, but with such a tiny surface area it all looked like much ado about next to nothing. Not exactly a gamechanger, but he’s probably boosted their tourism – meaning more of those naughty flights.

Surprised this morning to find that the island of Porto Santo was featuring on BBC Breakfast, where it was described as “aspiring to become the first energy independent island by eliminating the use of fossil fuels altogether”, reports Madeira Island News.

The report started by showing diesel generators fuelling pollution, and moved on the detail the efforts being made to use reversible car batteries to recharge the electric grid.

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Queensland, Australia


Sub-tropical snow – some folk may have to manage without electricity from their solar panels until it goes 😎

Icy conditions are sweeping across eastern Australia, bringing snow to areas as far north as sub-tropical Queensland in what is believed to be the heaviest snowfall in years, reports the Evening Standard.

Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology described the weather as “rare” adding that Queensland had not experienced significant snowfall since 2015.

June marks the beginning of winter in Australia but the extreme weather is highly unusual, especially so early on in some areas of Tasmania, Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales.

Many took to social media to express their amazement at finding snow in their hometowns as well as sharing photos of Kangaroos and Tasmanian devils playing in the cold conditions.

The Blue Mountains west of Sydney woke on Tuesday to a blanket of snow, while there have been falls in Queensland’s Granite Belt region, west of Brisbane, although snow was not expected to settle.

Travellers are also being warned to expect delays on roads, rail, waterways and in the skies amid a day of wild weather and icy winds.

Full report here.


Cold shower for students – protesting about ‘saving the planet’ may not be just a fun alternative to attending school lessons after all.
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Every Friday, thousands of German pupils take part in the “Fridays for Future” climate demonstrations, writes Andrew Montford @ The GWPF.

This could now have serious consequences for some of them – they may have to stay down and repeat the year. At one Berlin Gymnasium alone 13 pupils are said to face this consequence.

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U.K.’s Nigel Farage demands a seat at Brexit talks

Posted: May 27, 2019 by oldbrew in News, Politics
Tags:

Credit: mining.com


Very unlikely to be offered one, but with a big win in the European elections the Brexit Party leader has a point – and probably a pint too. One report says he will be ‘the head of the largest single party in the chamber with 29 seats’, although some results are not in yet. How much longer can Brexit dithering go on?

Nigel Farage demanded a seat at Brexit negotiations on Monday after his new party swept to victory in the United Kingdom’s European Parliament election, warning that he would turn British politics upside down if denied, reports CBC News.

Farage, a bombastic 55-year-old commodities broker-turned anti-establishment supremo, won by riding a wave of anger at the failure of Prime Minister Theresa May to take the United Kingdom out of the European Union.

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Tesla model X [image credit: IB Times]


Can electric car companies ever be financially viable? The Tesla example isn’t looking too good since government subsidies were withdrawn, pushing up prices. This article asks if Tesla is running out of buyers for its vehicles.

Late last year, Tesla Inc. was fully charged and cruising down the highway on Autopilot, says Phys.org.

Shares were trading above $370 each, sales of the Model 3 small electric car were strong and the company had appointed a new board chair to rein in the antics of sometimes impulsive CEO Elon Musk.

But around the middle of December, investors started having doubts about the former Wall Street darling’s prospects for continued growth, and the stock started a gyrating fall that was among the worst in company history.

For the year, the share price is down around 40%, largely on concerns Tesla is running out of buyers for its vehicles, which range in price from a base $35,400 Model 3 to a larger Model X SUV that can run well over $130,000.

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Oxford Circus climate demo [image credit: London Evening Standard]


People shouldn’t be allowed to ignore the law in pursuit of their beliefs. Protest is permitted up to a point, but go too far and the police have to act to try and restore order.

The Met [Metropolitan Police] will push for the prosecution of more than 1,100 people arrested over last month’s Extinction Rebellion protests, a senior officer has said.

So far more than 70 activists have been charged in connection with the demonstrations that brought parts of central London to a standstill, reports BBC News.

Ten days of protests in April saw 1,130 people arrested for various offences.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Laurence Taylor said the Met wanted to deter other groups employing similar tactics.

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