Lords a leapin

View of the House of Lords Chamber in the Pala...

View of the House of Lords Chamber in the Palace of Westminster, London, looking from the galleries towards the Throne (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Guest post by Mike Jonas

From the UK’s BBC comes this news item:

Trillion-euro shortfall facing EU energy sector – Lords Committee

Under the obligatory photo of chimneys spewing steam, is a totally uncritical article on the final report from an eight-month inquiry by the UK’s House of Lords into the EU power sector.

The report accuses the EU of having a muddled energy policy, but the horribly disturbing aspect of this report is that their lordships are the ones that are muddled. For example, they say that a muddled Brussels energy policy is putting off big investors. Well, they really got that wrong. Brussels’ policy is very clear, and is specifically designed to put off big investors.

The report says that a trillion euros will need to be spent on infrastructure for low carbon, interconnected and innovative energy systems. Their lordships do not seem to have noticed that the EU is already equipped with a complete energy infrastructure.

All they need are adequate efficient power stations to feed it. Germany has at last recognised this, and is building coal-fired power stations again. Mind you, that wasn’t the result of clear thinking, it resulted from a knee-jerk reaction to Fukushima including the muddled idea that coal is “cleaner” than nuclear.

Their lordships said “This should be a great time to invest in long-term assets such as energy, but clear policy is needed in order to release it” and then go on to promote the most muddled policy possible. Reacting to the collapse of the ETS “carbon” price, they advocate taking steps to increase it. How muddled can you get? The collapse of the carbon price will make it more attractive for big investors to build the coal-fired power stations that the EU so desperately needs. In fact, removal of the ETS altogether would provide even more encouragement, as it would deliver certainty that there would not be penalties on CO2 emissions. So now Germany will reap the benefits of increasing coal power, while the UK and the rest of Europe sink further behind.

According to their lordships, a target for the proportion of renewables in the energy mix up to 2030 is rapidly required. Have they not noticed that the energy shambles in the UK and Europe (and Australia too for that matter) is caused by the push into renewables? If you go to the coast of Norfolk, for example, and look out over the North Sea, there are massive windfarms stretching as far as the eye can see. A breath-taking amount of money has been wasted on ugly inefficient intermittent grid-stressing expensive wind energy. Now their lordships are bemoaning the fact that even more breath-taking amounts of money will be needed to be spent on the same mistakes in future. That is indeed muddled thinking. If something is causing a problem, the solution is to do something else, not to do more of the same. Blind Freddie can see that, why can’t their lordships?

Please, please, all you UK citizens and residents that read WUWT, write to the members of your houses of parliament, phone them, pester them, do whatever it takes to un-muddle their thinking for them. Tell them the UK is rapidly nearing an energy tipping-point (they should understand that bit) after which the country descends irretrievably into frosty darkness.

PS. Maybe the real cause of all this is the replacement of hereditary peers by party political hacks. Ordinary people, regardless of who their parents are, can sometimes see things more clearly than those who have been cocooned in politics all their lives.

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42 Responses to Lords a leapin

  1. Steven Devijver says:

    h/t?

  2. John Moore says:

    The PS is a classic. The debates in the House of Lords before they got rid of all but 92 of the Hereditaries at the beginning of the Blair administation in 1997 were of a far higher standard than now. Most of the sons of the old toffs had a disciplinned upbringing and were taught to think at their schools. Before ‘self expression and creativity’ became the norm — and people became most concerned about what others thought of them. The expression ‘be your own man’ doesn’t seem to be mentioned nowadays.

  3. John B says:

    How many ‘Lords’ are also connected, lucratively, with organisation involved in ‘clean’ energy, or who have land to rent upon which windmills may march and spin?

    Writing to just about anyone in the political class anywhere in Europe is a waste of time.

    If they cannot see it for themselves, explaining it will be way beyond their abilities to comprehend.

    But the truth is, they do not want to see it.

  4. tonyb says:

    Mike said

    ‘Please, please, all you UK citizens and residents that read WUWT, write to the members of your houses of parliament, phone them, pester them, do whatever it takes to un-muddle their thinking for them. Tell them the UK is rapidly nearing an energy tipping-point (they should understand that bit) after which the country descends irretrievably into frosty darkness.”

    By one of life’s great coincidences I was seeing my MP on this subjectr this very morning. I have some useful material -graphs showing declining UK temperatures, A graphic illustrating the tiny % of co2 emissions the UK produces; A chart showing costs of UK energy from 2005 against the declining temperatures etc. If anyone should want copies just contact me

    tony(AT) climatereasonDOTcom

    tonyb

  5. Phillip Bratby says:

    It is useless witing to ones MP or a Minister. They are blind to the realities of life. I have a huge file full of letters from my MP and various ministers – all saying nothing but nonsense. The only hope is that they may eventually get the message if enough people contact them and if they take note of the votes for UKIP, the only party with a sensible climate change policy (get rid of it) and energy policy (get rid of useless renewables and build coal-fired and nuclear power stations and get on with fracking).

  6. jc says:

    This is good.

    One Trillion Euros is an excellent figure to bandy about. Even the most jaded, cynical and deflated to near death person will sit up when they hear this. One Trillion!

    These (typical) imbeciles and degenerates presumably think this will communicate the great gravity of the issue and the absolute need for sacrifice to meet it. Instead, it will just emphasis how insane this is, and that its proponents must be removed from having any influence over anyones life.

    One TRILLION of peoples future to achieve nothing more than enriching a small parasitic class! Repeat! Repeat! Repeat!

  7. Vince Causey says:

    Phillip Bratby says:
    May 3, 2013 at 7:19 am
    “It is useless writing to ones MP or a Minister. They are blind to the realities of life. I have a huge file full of letters from my MP and various ministers – all saying nothing but nonsense.”

    It is indeed useless. All they do is repeat the mantra from the holy scripts, and toss in a few nuggets about creating “green jobs” or having a “diversified energy policy.” You probably heard the Ed Davey line: “the more expensive energy gets, the lower our bills will become.”

    You can’t argue with these people. I would say kick them out of office, but that won’t happen because the masses haven’t suffered yet. It will take rolling brownouts to give the electorate the kick it needs.

  8. William Astley says:

    Could someone help me out? How is it possible that the Western countries have spent billions of dollars on green scams that have resulted in only a minor or no difference on their local CO2 emissions? CO2 emissions will continue to rise due to the construction of coal fired plants in the developing countries.

    Is there a mind altering drug being injected in the politicians’ water, that turns off reason and common sense?

    There are 1200 planned coal fired plants (75% in India and China. China is putting 2 new plants in service per week and India one per week). What is the point of increasing the cost of energy in the EU and the US? A back of the envelop calculation indicates, that atmospheric CO2 will rise due to industrial development in the ‘developing’ countries regardless of the job killing ‘green scam’ policies in the EU and the US.

    As many EU countries have banned fracking, local natural gas is not an option. Many EU countries are strongly anti nuclear and have closed or are planning their nuclear power plants. That leaves coal as the only viable option.

    It appears the number one problem in the EU and US is structural inefficiency which is a job killer and a revenue killer. There is a very long list wish list and must have government programs and departments that require a revenue stream to support. EU and the US must compete with the developing countries.

    What are your thoughts when you read these new headlines?

    Chancellor Angela Merkel’s coalition announced on May 30, 2011, that Germany’s 17 nuclear power stations will be shut down by 2022, in a policy reversal following Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster.[2] … …The plan is to keep shut eight reactors which were suspended in March in the immediate aftermath of the Fukushima disaster, and to close the rest by 2022.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/04/23/germany-to-open-six-more-coal-power-stations-in-2013/
    Germany’s dash for coal continues apace. Following on the opening of two new coal power stations in 2012, six more are due to open this year, with a combined capacity of 5800MW, enough to provide 7% of Germany’s electricity needs. … ….Including the plants coming on stream this year, there are 12 coal fired stations due to open by 2020. Along with the two opened last year in Neurath and Boxberg, they will be capable of supplying 19% of the country’s power. …. ….In addition, 27 gas fired stations are due on line, which should contribute a further 17% of Germany’s total electricity generation. (Based on 2011 statistics, total generation was 575 TwH). … ….It is worth noting that none of these coal or gas plants will be built with Carbon Capture & Storage (CCS), which is a legal requirement for coal generators in the UK, despite the fact that the technology does not yet exist on a commercial scale.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/nov/20/coal-plants-world-resources-institute
    1200 coal fired plants planned, 75% in China and India. China is currently starting up two coal fired plants per week and India one coal fired plant per week.

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/mar/4/king-coal-reigns-as-global-powerhouse/?page=all

    Coal by 2030 will be the most widely used fuel worldwide as developing countries electrify burgeoning cities and rural areas where billions of people have had no or little access to power, according to the International Energy Agency.

    The U.S., Europe and Japan may debate the merits of coal versus nuclear, natural gas, wind and other cleaner fuels, but for developing countries that have considerably less income and wealth to pay for power projects, those more-expensive sources of power are rarely realistic alternatives. For this vast swath of humanity, coal remains the main or only alternative to improve their lives with a reliable energy source.

    “For a vast multitude of the human race, the world is a dark place,” said Frank Clemente, a retired Pennsylvania State University professor. “Over 1.2 billion people lack any electricity and another 2 billion or more have inadequate access to power. A key goal of the Copenhagen accord of 2010 is to provide energy to these impoverished populations. Coal is the only fuel that can sustainably meet growing global demand at such a scale.”
    The door may be shutting on many aging coal-fired power plants in the U.S., but coal has shown a modest revival in Europe and roaring growth in Africa, Asia and the rest of the developing world as it remains the cheapest and most reliable source of power. Coal already provides 41 percent of the world’s power and that is set to grow significantly, according to the international agency. … …In China, coal fuels 80 percent of electric generation, and the country in the past five years has added more coal plants to its grid than the entire fleet of U.S. power generators. China’s appetite for coal is so voracious that it soon will consume more coal each year than the rest of the world combined, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-21839684

    New nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point C is approved
    The proposed £14bn power plant would be capable of powering five million homes.

    Why construct a nuclear power plant? A coal fired plant is the no brainer cheaper option. Does the UK have a surplus of funds to spend on energy?

  9. ThinAir says:

    Mike, You have described the insanity of these worldly men (and women ?). But I cannot resist further characterization following your theme:

    These emperors have beautiful bespoke clothes which they adore.

    But, here in this version of this allegory it is more tragic. The “people” — played here by the BBC and funded by the emperors — love the clothes just as much, and demand more..

    Quoting from the BBC article:

    “The money is there from institutional investors for these energy projects, say the Lords. But the lack of a clear policy about how to deliver secure and affordable power is holding them back.”

    The “people” pine for more of these magical and high-meaning clothes (call them “vestments” ) to deliver us unto salvation. Yet, they sense the magic is not working.

  10. Dr. Lurtz says:

    Why don’t they fund the energy sector for what they want? That’s what Obama did.
    Whenever they don’t have a solution, they blame it on the private sector!!!!

    Maybe the real problem is that there is no “perfectly clean solution”.

  11. Is that gurgling the sound of Europe sinking after hitting an economic iceberg?

  12. Jimbo says:

    I wonder how many of these Lords own land (windfarm subsidies)? I there a conflict of interest among some of them at least?

  13. Considering much of the European Union is severely in debt and Germany is the only country with enough cash on hand to bail them out…. I can’t wait for their answer when they are told they will have to fork out the One Trillion Euros to pay this bill.

  14. RichieP says:

    I’d love to write to my MP on this topic but, alas, it would be worse than useless. She is Caroline Lucas, the only Green MP (thank the gods for that small mercy) and is also the person who suggested that we should all go back to wartime rationing to help ‘save the planet’.

  15. MarkW says:

    Colorado recently passed a law that requires rural electric co-ops in a few years, to start producing 20% of our electricity from renewable sources, and hydro doesn’t count as a renewable.

  16. Nik Marshall-Blank says:

    I’d say your all wasting your time writing to MP’s.

    Who fills the governments coffers, a prosperous economy.
    Where does a prosperous economy come from, business.
    Who gives the most concessions to business regarding tax breaks, start up costs and waiving of tax revenues, the government.
    Who allows reckless speculation of Joe Public’s money, the government.
    Who foots the bill when it all goes wrong, YOU.

  17. jorgekafkazar says:

    “What, what, what? Abandon our lead in sustainability? I should say not! Future generations will call that trillion euros money well spent.” –Lord Reginald Blimp, Quangolian Minister of Silly Policies

  18. Allan M says:

    jc says:
    May 3, 2013 at 7:34 am

    One TRILLION of peoples future to achieve nothing more than enriching a small parasitic class!

    Since at least the Norman Conquest (1066 to you forriners), the so-called “elite” have been of the opinion that the only reason that the rest of us exist is to keep them in opulence.

  19. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    MarkW said on May 3, 2013 at 10:19 am:

    Colorado recently passed a law that requires rural electric co-ops in a few years, to start producing 20% of our electricity from renewable sources, and hydro doesn’t count as a renewable.

    Each co-op should make a unit that generates 2.0% of the electricity, by burning the stalks and other organic waste from the harvesting of all that newly legalized marijuana. Keep showing the inspectors how the flue exhaust is completely inoffensive until they either stop noticing the decimal point, or can be convinced it simply jumped to the left for no good reason just like the legislators did.

  20. jc says:

    @William Astley says:
    May 3, 2013 at 8:12 am

    You are obviously right. The utter futility of Western (pseudo) democracies in pursuing this is obvious to a 5 yo. It is this that makes the whole thing so clearly murderously criminal.

  21. jc says:

    Allan M says:
    May 3, 2013 at 10:30 am

    “Since at least the Norman Conquest (1066 to you forriners), the so-called “elite” have been of the opinion that the only reason that the rest of us exist is to keep them in opulence.”

    ————————————————————————————————————————-
    And that is what needs to be made crystal clear to people. This class of being, international in its constitution, does not feel the need to maintain the standard of living or even existence of those inside their countries; they can accrue benefit mainly from the transfer of wealth and activity from one place to another. They benefit from the demise of others.

  22. Edohiguma says:

    Only 1 trillion? What’s 1 additional trillion added to the black hole in Brussels? At times like this I’m tempted to sit down and figure out how much money the EUSSR has cost us so far. But then I decide against it because I might forget myself and do rash things.

  23. john robertson says:

    In government how does one distinguish between systemic incompetence and systemic corruption?
    As a taxpayer, is there any difference?

  24. Radical Rodent says:

    PS. Maybe the real cause of all this is the replacement of hereditary peers by party political hacks. Ordinary people, regardless of who their parents are, can sometimes see things more clearly than those who have been cocooned in politics all their lives.

    Here, here! (Or should that be “Hear, hear!”? Hmmm… “Hear, here!” covers both bases). I have long been attracted to a second house that is independent of political interference, which a hereditary peerage had given us. There may have been faults in that system, but they are as nought to the faults in the present system! Bring to mind Lord Prescott of Pies, Baroness Whoisshe, Dame Wotsername of the Flailing Arms (probably inspired so by the windmills she so loves in her short life).

  25. Nik says:

    “So now Germany will reap the benefits of increasing coal power, while the UK and the rest of Europe sink further behind.”

    Which might have been the plan all along.

  26. Radical Rodent:

    Since you query the matter, the correct version is, “Hear! Hear!”
    It is an abbreviated form of “Hear him! Hear him!” which was popular around the time of the Civil War.

    Richard

  27. Chad Wozniak says:

    Apropos all the speculation as to why the EU wants to waste a trillion euro and the US a trillion dollars – on climate change boils down to this: not only do the world’s fat cats like Gore, Immelt, Buffett and Soros expect to get richer from CO2 controls, off the backs of the middle class and the poor, they and the academic exponents of AGW really do want to see the middle class destroyed – eliminated – and poor people made to suffer, because that will satisfy their lust for power.

    If the UK doesn’t want to be reduced to third-world status it had better give up on CO2 sequestration, refit its coal generation and frack, frack, frack, and lose no time doing it. As for us in the US – hopefully, there are signs the AGW crusade may be faltering, but we need to fight hard for fracking here, for the Keystone pipeline, for new coal mine permits, and oil and gas drilling permits on federal land.

    The Obama video showing all the Republican skeptics was a mistake on the zealots’ part – it proves the lie of their claim of “consensus” as well as anything could – but given how lacking in intelligent thinking these people are, it comes as no surprise.

    I’d love to be able to question Steven Chu on what benefits he thinks his propsal to double gasoline prices (to EU levels) will ptovide for middle-class and poor people here in the US. I can just see the exchange going like this:

    WOZNIAK: Mr. Secretary, how will your proposal to raise gasoline prices to $10 a gallon benefit low-income Americans?
    CHU: It will save the planet for their grandchildren.
    WOZNUAK: But Mr. Secretary, a lot of low-income people are raising their grandchildren right now and just barely getting by. If these grandparents have to pay more for gasoline, how will they be able to afford to feed their granchildren and heat and light their homes?
    CHU: Uh, the price of eggs in China is the important issue here. It’s been going up because of global warming.
    WOZNIAK: Mr. Secretary, please answer the question.
    CHU: I did, and you are out of order.
    /sarc

  28. TomRude says:

    The only way such blattantly destructive policies are recommended cannot be stupidity: someone has to reap huge amounts off this. It is deliberate.

  29. E.M.Smith says:


    john robertson says:
    May 3, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    In government how does one distinguish between systemic incompetence and systemic corruption?
    As a taxpayer, is there any difference?

    Systemic incompetence will not regularly enrich a specific few or class. It will occasionally stumble into correct answers, and the ideology will not show a consistent plan.

    Systemic corruption will fight correct answers (indicating it recognizes them) and will act to consistently enrich a few or class. It will never accidentally have a correct answer, and the ideology will show a strong consistent plan (and resist strongly efforts to change it).

    As a taxpayer, incompetence makes things cost about twice as much; while corruption has no upper bound on costs…

  30. 4 eyes says:

    I’ll comment anyway but your last paragraph is what I was thinking all the way through. If you’re born a Lord it doesn’t mean you’re born smart, with no apologies to all the Lords and Ladies. However if you are born a Lord you probably grow up expecting to have some inside knowledge on things that will make you some money but when cold hard reality gets in the way you really get to feel anxious and stressed. And confused. Welcome to the world that the rest of us live in.

  31. Chad Wozniak says:

    @Tom Rude –

    It’s called crony capitalism, and the Soroses, Gores, Immelts, and Buffetts of this world have been bathing their toady in the White House with campaign contributions in return for which he is implementing policies that are meant to make them richer, from their uneconomic investments in green energy. He jacks up the cost of fossil fuel power generation from 7 cents to 40 cents a kWh, with his war on coal and his obstruction of oil and gas drilling, and suddenly your wind investment can claim to be competitive. The billionaires get richer while middle-class and poor people struggle to make ends meet – and if they own businesses, to pay their energy costs. That’s what “redistributing wealth” is REALLY about – taking from the poor and giving to the rich. Just look at all the socialist kleptocracies in Africa which, judging by the toady’s telling people in Ghana to stay with their bounteous biomass resources (animal, but also human excrement, for cooking their food), is presumably his vision of the future for America..

  32. Eugene WR Gallun says:

    It is the socialists (progressives) who support and push green policies. And as those policies create more and more hardship for the average person they will blame all ensuing troubles on “the greedy rich”! They want to have it both ways — they want to destroy capitalism and they want capitalists to take the blame for the ensuing economic chaos — which socialists will have caused..

    Eugene WR Gallun.

  33. Eugene WR Gallun:

    re your post at May 4, 2013 at 12:51 am

    Um, No! e.g. David Cameron is not a socialist.

    Richard

  34. Peter Plail says:

    As noted by others above, writing to ones MP is pointless. I wrote to mine (George Osborne) and received a standard letter which totally failed to acknowledge any of the points I raised ( I know that it was a standard response when someone on WUWT published an identically worded letter which he got from his (different) MP).When I complained about the boiler plate response I got a slightly more personal reply which still missed the point of my original letter.

    I gave up trying to influence existing political parties and now support UKIP, which has a realistic approach to climate policy.

  35. johnmarshall says:

    Our House of Lords is a hotbed of Liberal activist Lords of the Realm. The Liberal Democrat party is the one that wants us all to live in caves, except them of course. Davey is a LibDem. Says it all really.

  36. DirkH says:

    Mike Alexander says:
    May 3, 2013 at 9:38 am
    “Considering much of the European Union is severely in debt and Germany is the only country with enough cash on hand to bail them out…. I can’t wait for their answer when they are told they will have to fork out the One Trillion Euros to pay this bill.”

    What cash? The German state has a 85% debt to GDP ratio.We are nearly insolvent while the PIIGS are already insolvent. Only newly generated cash, given to the Eurozone states by the central bank in exchange for more public debt could pay it; or alternatively, more expropriation of taxpayers.

    In a new poll 70% of the polled in Germany have expressed their desire for tax hikes after the election; the socialists and Greens are running on a class warfare / tax the rich to the hilt ticket. If you are lucky the Germans will be stupid enough to tax themselves into oblivion. But the money would still not be there.

  37. DirkH says:

    richardscourtney says:
    May 4, 2013 at 1:15 am
    “Um, No! e.g. David Cameron is not a socialist.”

    Can we settle on “communitarians”, Richard?

  38. DirkH:

    At May 4, 2013 at 4:38 am you ask me about all who promote AGW and David Cameron in particular.

    Can we settle on “communitarians”, Richard?

    Well, looked up ‘communitarians’ and found this

    Definitions of ‘communitarians’ [kuh-myoo-ni-tair-ee-uhn]
    Dictionary.com – (Showing 1 definitions)
    (noun)
    1. member of a communistic community
    2. advocate of such a community

    So, no. We cannot settle on that.

    David Cameron PM is Leader of the right-of-center Conservative Party.
    It is a laughable suggestion that he is a communist or he promotes communism.

    AGW is promoted by totalitarians, and they exist across the entire political spectrum from far left to far right, but they are most often found near the extremes.

    Richard

  39. DirkH says:

    Richard, see here.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communitarianism
    dictionary.com might have missed that one. The movement operates stealthily yet globally, much like the Fabians, and is usually recognizable only by its use of keywords like “stakeholder”. I’m sure Schellnhuber is one of them.

  40. Forester126 says:

    Like Phillip Bratby I also have written to my MP who happens to be a Minister in the Government and got a similar response. However yesterday UKIP became the official opposition on the County Council and have pledged to oppose any more wind farms, of which we have plenty. I suspect though that the three other parties will gang up against them.

  41. Jay says:

    For this to make any sense at all, it has to have some alternative reason..
    The elites are worried that their position in society is being threatened by their very own policies..
    Multiculturalism has brought huge numbers of Asians to the west.. These Asians will look to their own home countries India, China, ect and their own home grown elite class to set the tone of whats what in the future..

    It stands to reason that they will have all the wealth and the elite power that goes along with it..

    The only way our western elites can maintain their politics and power is to convince the Asians to go home by making life so expensive and unpleasant that they will do so on their own free will..

    Killing our economies / societies so their grandchildren get to be elites too..

    Break the back of their people so they can maintain their position of power and wealth..

    This is the only thing that makes sense.. Elite political ethnic cleansing via environmentalism..
    Its not like whites can move to China..eh

  42. Chad Wozniak says:

    I forgot – a hat tippo to Janice Moore for giving me the idea for my “interview” with Styeven Chu.

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