Report Reveals £300 Billion Cost Of Britain’s Climate Change Act

Peter Lilley MP: ‘Rising costs borne disproportionately by the less well off, the elderly and the vulnerable’

London, 11 December: A new report published today by the Global Warming Policy Foundation reveals the extraordinary £319 billion cost of Britain’s Climate Change Act.

The report, which is based entirely on official figures, exposes the mischievous attempts by ministers to try and disguise the true cost to households.

“Britain has been gulled by false assurances that decarbonising our economy would be costless into signing up to a stupendous bill of over £300 billion up to 2030,” said Peter Lilley MP, the study’s author and one of the few Members of Parliament who voted against the Act back in 2008.

“Hardly anyone in Westminster is aware of this even though it is more than double the cost of HS2, Heathrow and Hinckley put together. Yet so far it has not reduced our ‘carbon footprint’ as we have outsourced our carbon emissions to developing countries such as China. Described by the PM’s special adviser as ‘an act of self harm’, our climate change policies are harming our standard of living, our jobs and our industry.”

The report details the huge burden on every household, explaining how numerous devices have been used to hide the real price of decarbonisation, which is rising at a rapid rate.

Peter Lilley warns that the Government can no longer be complacent about the rising cost of Britain’s unilateral climate policies, particularly in light of Theresa May’s expressed priority of supporting ‘just about managing’ families. After all, these costs “are borne disproportionately by the less well off, the elderly and the vulnerable.”

Full report (PDF)


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Henry Galt
December 11, 2016 1:09 pm

Peter Lilley – one of only a handful to vote against the bill and one of … well, one actually, hard science degree holders at that time.

Reply to  Henry Galt
December 11, 2016 1:33 pm

Thanks. Absolutely correct.
Politics, as you note, doesn’t attract folk with real knowledge these days.
And many of those attracted appear to have their own motives – not always aligned with the good of their country, I suggest.

Bill Powers
Reply to  auto
December 11, 2016 2:50 pm

“Politics…doesn’t attract folk with real knowledge these days.”
These days?
The founders where revolutionary’s who created a form of Government that almost immediately became corrupted by politicians. Politics has always been the province of snake oil grifters, carnival barkers and used car salesmen.

Reply to  Bill Powers
December 11, 2016 2:59 pm

If only you were right! Most politicians are sincere, but deluded on several subjects. Being an outright crook is rare, and was the main thing reassuring me when it looked like Hillary Rodham Clinton could win. Outright crooks AKA “machine politicians” have limits, as they wish for the machine to go on. It has been the zealots who cause serious harm.
The other thing going on is Jerry Pournelle’s law of bureacracy, where the skills to rise in politics do not have much to do with the purported purpose of the organization.

Reply to  auto
December 12, 2016 9:50 am

The outright crooks rarely do as much damage as those who go into politics with an eye towards helping people. Whether they want to be helped or not.

Reply to  Henry Galt
December 12, 2016 8:05 am

An excellent detailed and factually substantiated proof that the U.K.’s Energy Policy over the last 20-25 years has been an unnecessary amateurist’s economic and environmental disaster for the UK, driven by no consistent or credible objective. Note, this Report has had no need to enter into any debate regarding CAGW or Climate Change.
A copy should be sent to every member of the HOC, the HOL, and all major Local Authority Councillors with an invitation to disprove what it says or what other excuse they have for supporting current Green Energy policies and the totally unnecessary massive additional costs to all our domestic, commercial and industrial costs.
What this Report demonstrates, yet again – even if CO2 emissions have to be reduced, is that the simple route is to immediately cancel all tax breaks, subsidies and guaranteed minimum price mechanisms, re-introduce the open competitive free market in Power and Energy, get Suppliers to only supply Base Load power prices with or without VER’s and with any base load standby power, power generation rent charges, plus charges per tonne of CO2 generated per Mwhr power generated as determined overall for all their power supplied at rates determined by government.

Henry Galt
December 11, 2016 1:11 pm

and it was snowing. In October. For the first time in 80 years.
I despair. And pay through the nose.

Reply to  Henry Galt
December 11, 2016 1:20 pm

Don’t despair! There ARE consequences to political stupidity, and you need look only over to the United States to see what some of those consequences are! A new rational president, brilliant administration cabinet position selections that WILL set things properly in motion to save those billions of dollars or pounds that you now see wafting away on wings of idiocy.
Things WILL get better; assuredly so!!!

Henry Galt
Reply to  tomwys1
December 11, 2016 1:25 pm

I hope so. I worry that hope serves me much like belief serves the warmunists.
“.. Think I might go work Orlando, If them orange groves don’t freeze ..” – Tom Petty

Reply to  tomwys1
December 11, 2016 5:07 pm

Tom, I hope you are correct in your bullish outlook for the new Trump era. He has picked some very good people so far. Most of his policies make economic sense. Tillerson would be an excellent counter to one of Trumps wrong-headed ideas on trade. Free trade is imperative, IMHO.. The crusade against China is ignorant at best. At least Trump sees Russia as an ally, probably vs China, but an ally ? All in all, I am with you, with some large reservations, including immigration.

Reply to  Henry Galt
December 12, 2016 2:14 am

It was… and then we had a record high temperature in December in Wales if you recall.
The UK’s weather patterns – its climate in fact – has shifted in the last decade to a pattern which brings intense slow moving rainfall events and severe flooding… and this is also costing us billions, in insurance payouts.

Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 3:06 am

No Griff,
according to the met office 1766-2015 records; the wettest decade in the written record was 1871-1882
The driest was 1854-1864
A decade of weather pattern is not a climate change.
Building in the middle of rivers (AKA flood plain), has cost us billions, in insurance payouts.

Gerry, England
Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 3:58 am

Research by a reliable non-Met Office person has shown that there are patterns in our rainfall and following a period of lower rainfall where idiots thought it was fine to build on flood plains as it hasn’t flooded for years. Now we are in a wetter period and the consequences of that policy are causing more floods. However, if you go back through the records, the levels of the floods are nothing new. They are not unprecedented and if you use the full records available and not truncate them to make a false point like the MetO do, they are nothing new in the records.

Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 6:12 am

Which year was this record high temperature in Wales and what did it reach?
Wales is especially susceptible to the foehn wind effect during winter.
I have studied British weather records over the last 1000 years. Present day rainfall events are nothing like as severe as during some periods in the past. Please be specific as to which modern events you believe to be especially severe and are a record in our history

Mick J
Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 12:56 pm

Gerry, England
This may be who you have in mind.
“Lives and homes are in danger because the flood risk in Wales is being underestimated, according to a rivers expert.
Aberystwyth University’s Prof Mark Macklin said magnitudes could be 40% greater than planned for in some areas.
He told BBC Wales Natural Resources Wales (NRW) is failing to use all historical data to predict the risks.
A NRW spokesman said its flood maps were not underestimating the problem but it was considering using the data.
Prof Macklin, who heads the university’s river dynamics and hydrology research group, questioned why NRW uses river gauges from the past 50 years only to predict flood risk.
He told Week In Week Out his researchers had found “evidence of much larger and more frequent floods” in the 18th century, which were between 20% and 30% larger.
Among areas most at risk, Prof Macklin said parts of the upper River Severn in Powys could see flood magnitudes between 20% and 40% greater than what had been experienced since 1980.
“We will need to rethink and re-map our flood plains to look at changing flood risks. If we don’t, we’re going to put more properties and livelihoods at risk,” he said.”
More including research from Professor Stuart Lane, from Durham University’s new Institute of Hazard and Risk at:

December 11, 2016 1:13 pm

£300 billion is a small price to pay to end Climate Theft ;

Reply to  BallBounces
December 11, 2016 1:23 pm

As long as it isn’t your money.

Rhoda R
Reply to  BallBounces
December 11, 2016 2:17 pm

“Climate theft” Is this the new, undefined but vaguely scary catch phrase that the left is going to use to try to block real climate science reform?

Reply to  BallBounces
December 11, 2016 5:10 pm

300 Billion is ridiculous, as Trump might say. Zero would be about right for a non-problem.

Reply to  BallBounces
December 12, 2016 9:52 am

Someone stole the climate?
Let me check. No mine’s still right where I left it.

December 11, 2016 1:25 pm

climate theft??? all right now–whoever stole the climate fess up now.

Moderately Cross of East Anglia
December 11, 2016 1:28 pm

300 billion is not a small price especially when it is being paid by the needless deaths of old and poor people who are dying because they cannot afford to both heat their homes and eat properly from their limited incomes. What is happening is a disgusting and evil deception by people posing as saviours of the environment to gull an entire nation. Ironically the Labour Party in Britain which claims it cares for the less well off has been witless and stupid to an extent that is simply staggering and the only consolation is that these morons will deservedly be rewarded by political extinction quite soon.

Henry Galt
Reply to  Moderately Cross of East Anglia
December 11, 2016 1:33 pm

doubleplus good Mr Moderately Cross.
Peter uses the word ‘ignored’ a LOT in the pdf. I think he is being over-charitable.

Reply to  Moderately Cross of East Anglia
December 11, 2016 3:42 pm

@Moderately Cross of East Anglia
We can only hope, or vote. I no longer believe in Labour (not that I ever did) nor Conservatives. I will be voting UKIP at the next GE, after a long lifetime of voting Conservative in the hope they could deliver some meaningful change. Well….they did, but by accident, and thankfully Brexit is that change we were all seeking. Not that it would have happened without Farage. However, UKIP are the only UK party I can see that actively opposes the AGW scam.
UKIP’s website is less full of the usual political pleadings, which arguably makes it simplistic, but I’m a simplistic man and I believe resistance to AGW nonsense is essential. The rest of the self-serving, congratulatory S**t can be dealt with later.
The main objective is to get this effing great gorilla off our back. Vote UKIP, solve AGW and if they don’t perform, we can go back to business as usual.
On a slightly less fatalistic note. Whilst we are all troubled by the western world’s machinations, teeth grinding and insecurities, we should pause, and recognise this moment in time as one of those people will analyse for generations.
When we are all dead and gone, WUWT, NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT, and many other sites will be studied for clues as to our descendants own political and social futures.
Or is that being big headed? Perhaps they’ll just read Facebook. Whatever!

Reply to  Moderately Cross of East Anglia
December 12, 2016 2:16 am

Most UK home heating is by gas and gas prices are not affected by the climate act.
the largest factor in UK electricity price increases in recent years has also been the price of gas.

Gerry, England
Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 4:07 am

Wrong as usual Court Jester. All generating companies are subject to green lunacy costs to fund changes to the grid brought about by planting windmills where nobody lives and then having to transmit the little power that they generate to where the demand actually is. This costs a lot of money. And then there are the other costs lumped on to the suppliers to pay for home insulation. And there is an £11m – at the moment – bill for idiotic ‘smart’ meters to be paid by consumers. And don’t forget that there will be other costs on goods as a result of carbon taxes on industries – those that are left – that are passed on to the consumer. Socialists like to believe that there is no coast to putting taxes or additional costs on business. It is part of their economic illiteracy to not know that these are passed straight down the line to the consumer.

Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 4:52 am

The poor and the old mostly are the ones who use plug-in electric heaters. Lots of people cook on electricity. Guardianistas usually phrase this as, only a couple of lattes a week…. so raise prices and save the planet…. go figure….

Barbara Skolaut
December 11, 2016 1:31 pm

300 Pounds? Good thing it wasn’t Dollars! ;-p

December 11, 2016 1:42 pm

Just skimmed through the report and I am sure all the figures have been worked out properly.
Just a pity that the report doesn’t explain why some people think we should “decarbonise” our energy to start with and why they are wrong.
As for seeing this in MSM tomorrow I’m not holding my breath. Maybe Christopher Booker in The Sunday Telegraph nest weekend?

Reply to  Oldseadog
December 11, 2016 3:07 pm
Reply to  Oldseadog
December 12, 2016 2:17 am

Matt Ridley runs with it in his Monday piece in the Times, just FYI

December 11, 2016 1:42 pm

But the green blob is saving the world, and people complain about the cost!/sarc

December 11, 2016 1:54 pm

That is roughly $400 billion USD. If the Brits would simply look at their molten salt reactor company , Moltex Energy, they would see that Moltex claims the ability to build their modular
reactors at less than $2 per watt. That $400 billion would buy over 200 reactors, probably 225, which can produce 1971 TWhrs per year. The UK’s yearly electric consumption equals 2249 TWhrs.
They could thus produce electricity at a rate that China cannot possibly match (they must import coal and gas) unless they also move to molten salt reactors, which they are trying to do.

John M. Ware
December 11, 2016 2:00 pm

What’s the population of the UK? Let’s guess 60,000,000 people, so the three-hundred-billion cost would be five thousand pounds per person, man, woman, and child–and for nothing. Sad

Reply to  John M. Ware
December 11, 2016 4:28 pm

Why guess? Use Google. 64.1 million in 2013.

John V. Wright
December 11, 2016 2:09 pm

Just an interesting point. £300 billion is almost exactly the amount of non-performing loans held by Italian banks. It doesn’t matter what the ECB says – if Italy begins to lose international investor confidence (as it clearly is already doing), there is no way that the West can hold Italy up. Indeed, in my view, the IMF would wash its hands. Italy is a BIG economy…we are not talking about an international effort to bail out Greece, for example. You will not see Italy bailed out. Either Italy or Germany will have to leave the Euro. Had a conversation with pan-European investors over dinner in the U.K. this evening and the consensus was that Italy will return to the lira (or something like it).
Anthony, apologies for apparently being a bit off topic but I believe that these amounts and the politics that they relate to are connected. I don’t mean to labour the point but we are not talking £300 million here. £300 BILLION, even by USA standards, is an awfully large amount of money to be swallowed. In terms of two European peoples, the Brits and the Italians, both are faced with bills which result from plainly political manoeuvrings (and both dedicated to the unrepresentative redistribution of wealth).
What I am saying is – I can’t see either electorate swallowing them. We live in interesting times.
Watch this space.

Reply to  John V. Wright
December 11, 2016 3:26 pm

Fortunately in the case of Britain the money has yet to be spent and an air of realism is at last starting to come to the surface which makes it unlikely it will be.
However your point about Italy is correct and it is money that is owed and is due. It is a huge sum by any standards And is likely to affect up to eight banks with one hoping to recapitalize itself on the uk money markets next week. Bond holders, ordinary Italian people in many cases will take a large haircut.
The west is unbelievably profligate and to what end as regards energy As the money will only create an unreliable and expensive renewable energy source that will have no discernible effect on global temperatures.renewables have a place but not centre stage.
As for Italy, it needs to leave the euro immediately. Deutsche bank is also highly vulnerable. What a mess.

Javert Chip
December 11, 2016 2:16 pm

5,000 pounds per person (men, women & children) is a stunning number (gulp!).
Is this a one-time or an annual number?

Reply to  Javert Chip
December 11, 2016 2:38 pm

It looks like it is a one time number, unless we’re using billion to mean a million millions. I’m told the Brits do that. In that case, the arithmetic doesn’t work.

Reply to  commieBob
December 11, 2016 2:47 pm

Used to do that (billion = million million) a long time ago, no longer.

Reply to  commieBob
December 11, 2016 9:20 pm

A UK billion is a thousand million.

Reply to  commieBob
December 12, 2016 2:17 am

No, we gave in to America on that!

Reply to  commieBob
December 12, 2016 9:56 am

When a billion was a million million, what was a thousand million called?

John V. Wright
Reply to  Javert Chip
December 11, 2016 2:43 pm

Hi Javert,
I don’t know (not my report) but it actually does not matter. Neither of these figures will stand. The UK recently voted to leave the EU; Italy recently ousted its pro-EU premier, Matteo Renzi; Angela Merkel (the EU’s senior political leader) recently backtracked on her open invitation to Middle East ‘refugees’; America has – thank God – turned to Trump; in France, Marie Le Pen is eyeing a serious run at the presidency.
Look at this. Merkel is the senior mainstream politician in Europe. This is a leader who opened the doors to large numbers of illegal immigrants from the Middle East. Thanks to Schengen – the cross-border easy-access treaty between EU nations on the Continent – the hordes poured through and across Europe. I am not saying there were not many deserving cases among them, there obviously were. But Western intelligence services warned that ISIS were seeding terrorists among the refugees. These terrorists then proceeded to murder young men and women at the Bataclan nightclub and elsewhere in Paris, and in Belgium.
I say again, Merkel is considered by mainstream political parties in Europe as the senior leader. She is, in fact, an absolute idiot. There are more than 1 million refugees now in Germany and the authorities have no idea where they are. WTF?!?!
Sorry, my point is that Western electorates have lost their faith in politicians big time. West of Moscow, it is all going tits up. Who cares what the size of the bill is. People will not pay it. And they look at the much-admired Merkel and think – is this a joke?
Well, maybe it IS a joke. But here’s the thing – no one is laughing.

Reply to  John V. Wright
December 11, 2016 5:19 pm

John, Your point about Western electorates is well taken. Why do we need politicians anymore, especially such a dumb bunch as we have had for most of my life, when we have the internet, which could surely have a daily or weekly referendum on any subject. All spending could be subject to the internet vote. How complicated could it be ? Am I being too simple-minded ?

Reply to  John V. Wright
December 11, 2016 10:00 pm

Well said, John. It’s getting near a generations worth now of successive European and US disastrous foreign policy interventions across northern Africa and the middle-east and such is the inevitable fallout. That’s before we even consider serious EU overtures to co-opt Ukraine and the persistent re-arming across eastern European borders.
I regularly run these arguments across colleagues at work; about one in thirty gets it. These are field days for the establishment politicos and mandarinati. Hopefully there’s a burgeoning informed awareness developing that will translate.

Reply to  John V. Wright
December 12, 2016 9:58 am

Harold, asking people who’s main interest is the size of Kardasian’s butt, to vote on the details of policy choices is even scarier than having professional politicians vote on it.

Reply to  Javert Chip
December 11, 2016 3:33 pm

“Is this a one-time or an annual number?”
It is cumulative. The report says:
“These costs place a cumulative £10,800 burden on each household, between 2014 and 2030”
I don’t know how many households are budgetting to 2030. But that is what it is.

Reply to  Javert Chip
December 11, 2016 7:39 pm

Actually, if the five thousand pounds is a one time cost, it pales compared to what Justin Trudeau is doing to Canada along with some of the provinces such as Alberta. Based on the last Alberta budget with Carbon tax implementation and increased tax rates, my total tax and increased cost of fuel, electricity, heating, groceries and so on due will increase by C$5,000 each and every year from 2017 till I die. Yet, the politicians wonder why people are getting annoyed. And I am retired.
And if you think my numbers are off, take a look at what a news outlet with a Global Warming Bias reported:
Watch PM of Canada, Justin Trudeau and be worried.
Not every province is on board with Junior’s “Canada Carbon Emissions Plan.

Darrell Demick
Reply to  Wayne Delbeke
December 13, 2016 1:23 pm

Right there with you, Mr. Delbeke. Continue to send scientifically sound information to the wonderful socialist leader in Alberta, along with the others that make up the “top five” (PC, Liberal, Alberta and Wild Rose parties), and of course the one and only Premier that truly gets it, IMHO (the Honorable Brad Wall, Premier of Saskatchewan), and all I get back is the ridiculously stupid “canned” responses. Why do we need to go down the inevitable path of mutual destruction? Why can we not learn from Europe and Great Britain, and closer to home, California and Ontario? But nope, let’s spend billions because of our completely unfounded Climate Policy. Sucks that we have another 32 months (and yes, I am counting) until the next Provincial election……

December 11, 2016 2:22 pm

Some of us have been warning about these costs for years now.

Reply to  Paul Homewood
December 11, 2016 6:18 pm

Bravo to you, Paul. The word is now getting out. Thanks to you, AW, and many selfless others, the ride is turning. Finally. Regards from a deplorable.

Gerry, England
Reply to  Paul Homewood
December 12, 2016 4:14 am

The bubble of politicians and the legacy media have to ‘discover’ things for themselves. They have a strict ‘not made here’ policy that stops them from learning. We see that in spades with Brexit where they stumble on something some of us knew up to 3 years ago and make a big song and dance about their ‘discovery’.

December 11, 2016 2:29 pm

Tempting to think that once Trump gets fully underway demolishing DoE and EPA this kind of lunacy in the UK and elsewhere will simply evaporate while those responsible hope no one notices the change. The trouble is though that UK dimwit virtue-signalling politicians have a long history of trying to make themselves look good by gold plating every stupid piece of legislation handed down from the EU bureaucrats. This time it is entirely possible they will ‘bravely’ go it alone in order to demonstrate to the World that we are precisely stupid enough to economically auto-terminate for no even in CAGW principle possible effect on the climate.
How we go about getting past the MSM and putting the public word out that our suicidally lunatic politicians will do precisely this unless they are stopped dead in their tracks is beyond me though. The continuing revolution sweeping Europe may have some effect but still it’s difficult to hope for change since every major institution has fusion welded its colours to the CAGW mast and they cannot ever back down without forever publically destroying their own credibility.
The only feeble consolation we have is that at least Australia can be counted on to be even more dogmatically perverse on this issue than ourselves.

December 11, 2016 3:14 pm

Ed Milliband’s 2008 climate change act, [which requires the UK to reduce its carbon emissions to a level 80% lower than its emissions in 1990 ] was written by Bryony Worthington (now Baroness Worthington), on behalf of FOE.
As of 2016, Worthington is the executive director of the Environmental Defense Fund.
She was “passionately opposed to nuclear power, but has at last seen the light (or seen the lights will go out) & now supports Thorium molten salt reactors; But the cost of the act & the time wasted in promoting solar & windmill scams, have put us 10-15 years behind India & China.
The 2008 climate change act should be repealed ASAP but it won’t be as too many MPs have their noses in the subsidy trough.

December 11, 2016 3:28 pm

The $300B seems to be based mainly on subsidies to wind. And Lilley gives this tablecomment image
I think that is interesting. It has onshore wind less than nuclear. But advocates of nuclear aren’t said to be promoting the freezing of the poor. And it’s only 1/3 more than coal.
But the key thing is the caveat – assuming constant fuel prices. We know the price of wind will be constant. But for other fuels, that And that could easily absorb the difference.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 11, 2016 3:36 pm

Nick Stokes ignores at least two things on the cost of electric sources. The first is the cost of “lawfare” regarding nuclear, which accounts for a very large portion of the cost, at least in the US, and probably in Europe. The second is presuming that an intermittent, non dispatchable source like wind produces power of equal value in an open market.

Reply to  Tom Halla
December 11, 2016 4:11 pm

Does the cost of wind take into account cost of required back-up power sources when the wind does no blow? Like saying the cost to own a car is X amount but you need two cars as one always breaks down.

Leo Smith
Reply to  Tom Halla
December 12, 2016 12:25 am

Duncan: No it doesn’t. My best guess calculations added another ~£20/MWh to wind as a cost of backing it up, and there are grid costs involved in moving high peak (but low average) flows from e.g. Scotland to the rest of the UK.
Reasoning is described in here:

Reply to  Tom Halla
December 12, 2016 10:03 am

Another point is that nuclear, gas, etc, are less efficient when run intermittently as they must since renewables are given priority.
That is, when the wind blows, the grid uses wind power and ramps down the production at the various fossil fuel plants.

Reg Nelson
Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 11, 2016 4:03 pm

Levelised Costs are fairy tale numbers — they can be whatever you want them to be. Unfortunately, actual costs have to be paid in actual dollars\pounds.

Leo Smith
Reply to  Reg Nelson
December 12, 2016 1:03 am

No, levelised costs are not fairy tale numbers, they are the best we can do to fairly compare energy sources.
Unfortunately they are liable to extreme manipulation.
(i) The interest rates on money borrowed to construct a large capital plant.
(a) What is the prevailing interest rate?
(b) Over what lifetime period is the principle to be repaid?
For wind nuclear hydro and solar these tend to dominate the costs over the plant lifetime.
(ii) Decommissioning costs. Nuclear is required to revert to ‘green field’ No other power technology has that restriction placed upon it. Should we uproot turbines from the sea bed?
(iii) O & M costs. We may project new technology failure and repair rates from models. The reality is somewhat different.
(iv) Capacity factors. The electricity produced by a plant is reduced by whatever capacity factor it actually operates at, as against what it was projected to operate at. Lower capacity factors increase electricity cost.
What affects the capacity factor?
(a) Plant availability may be lower due to unexpected maintenance. This is possibly the reason why predicted wind capacity factors are hopelessly optimistic over actual measured ones.
(b) The energy is simply not required. Coal and gas may throttle back or shut down in periods of low demand and/or high renewable availability. This means that the cost of coal and gas power goes up, as they still have to cover cost of capital and O & M costs out of a reduced generation amount. The way the law is, at least in the UK is that renewable sources always take precedence and are guaranteed income beyond market electricity rates. They can sell into any market up to the limit of demand…unless
(c) The actual peak flows that could be taken from e.g. a renewable source are constrained by the inability to transfer them. In the UK wind operators are paid not to generate when the grid cant transfer Scotland’s gales to England’s homes effectively. Its cheaper than building a grid to take the peak flows, that would remain underused in all by very high wind scenarios.
(v) Externalised costs applied unevenly.
(a) The whole high cost of renewable energy is based on the presumption that CO2 is a large cost to society, and that operators of fossil (and of course nuclear) ought to pay fr their presumption in emitting plant food. (Which nuclear does not of course.,
(b) the environmental and social costs of unsightly tourism reducing house price crashing 300meter tall bird slicers is assumed to be zero. Someone else pays.
(c)The cost of transferring large amounts of totally erratic wind and solar power from places where its generated to places where its needed is also assumed to be zero . Someone else pays,
(d) The cost of having warm standby and spinning reserve and STOR kit in readiness for when the wind drops or the sun goes down is likewise not the responsibility of the renewable generator.
(vi) Future fuel prices are unpredictable. In the case of gas the expected high gas prices simply didn’t stay … making renewables look pretty expensive by comparison.
(vii) Political legislation and regulatory ratcheting can force early plant closure – post Fukushima new nuclear rules forced closure of plants in the middle of e.g. Germany or Switzerland as they couldn’t meet a 20 meter tsunami…CO2 legislation forced early closure of perfectly adequate coal plant all over Europe.
The reality is that almost all of these points are politically affected, if not purely political. Politics is determining the levelised cost of energy, and distorting the cost between technologies. I attempted to look at real underlying costs myself, and write it all up but most published figures are based on political assumptions.
So levelised costs are all e have to compare technologies. But saying that a hammer is cheaper because the government has put a 500% tax on a staple gun, is presumably what you meant by ‘fairy tale’ 🙂

Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 11, 2016 4:49 pm

No one wants onshore wind power near them.
The levelized cost of wind is not the true cost. Add to that the cost of diesel and natural gas plant required when wind does not blow.
You should not assume the price of wind is constant unless we continue to subsidise it in the current manner. Meaning we pay 90% of the price even when we throw away unwanted wind power.

Reply to  mark4asp
December 11, 2016 10:23 pm

True to some extent. For instance, the Earl of Moray at his leased 36 x 2MW Braes O’ Doune wind farm trousers about a £million a year – guaranteed for its projected 25 year operation. It must be difficult drawing the curtains every night knowing there’s another three grand occuping the wallet.

Michael Palmer
Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 11, 2016 5:07 pm

This is hardly an apples-to-apples comparison. With nuclear, installed capacity equals available power. With wind, installed capacity equals additional stress put on your grid.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 11, 2016 6:59 pm

Nick Stokes;
We know the price of wind will be constant.
No we don’t. The cost of wind is predicated in part on the percentage of wind in the grid. As the percentage rises, the costs to stabilize and back up the grid sky rocket. Those prices in turn are predicated on the fuel costs for the sources that are being used for stability and backup, which you don’t know.
Easy to gloss things over with simple statements, much harder to actually operate a power grid based on practical requirements seasoned with a does of reality.

Nick Stokes
Reply to  davidmhoffer
December 11, 2016 8:15 pm

David H,
The price of wind is constant, zero. As for the rest, that depends on how the grid is organised. The greater its interconnectivity, the less the backup cost per MWH wind. And yes, there is some cost, which may increase marginally with price of other fuel. But using that fuel directly costs a lot more.

Reply to  davidmhoffer
December 11, 2016 9:12 pm

The price of wind is constant, zero.
The price of oil is constant, zero. What’s that you say? Extraction and refining costs are real? WHO KNEW?
But using that fuel directly costs a lot more.
It does? Is that why jurisdictions that use large amounts of wind have sky rocketing electricity costs? Did not Obama promise just that? Is that why no one build wind farms without either enormous subsidies or outrageous guaranteed feed in prices?
Beware things that are free Nick. In general they are crazy expensive.

Reply to  davidmhoffer
December 11, 2016 9:33 pm

Similarly, the price of oil is constant. It is zero. The stuff is just lying there in the ground. It is free. Oh, there’s refining and extraction costs? So not free. Not free anymore than wind is free. It costs a lot of money to use the free wind, and jurisdictions that use a lot of it have sky rocketing power costs. Just as Obama promised. Without subsidies or guaranteed feed in rates, there would be little or no wind power, because those fuels you claim cost more, actually don’t. Beware what you get for free. It invariably comes at a high cost.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  davidmhoffer
December 12, 2016 12:59 am

Nick is right, wind *IS* free. What costs is capturing it, making energy and then delivering it somewhere where is can be put to some use. That’s the costly bit!

Reply to  davidmhoffer
December 12, 2016 1:22 am

“What costs is capturing it, making energy and then delivering it somewhere where is can be put to some use.”
All power stations have those costs. The difference is that they have an input (fuel) that they have to pay real money for. And in terms of this LCOE, a cost that is likely to increase, though this analysis assumed not. Power stations will never have to pay an increasing amount for wind.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  davidmhoffer
December 12, 2016 3:17 am

“Nick Stokes December 12, 2016 at 1:22 am
All power stations have those costs.”
Not without subsidies, feed in tariffs etc etc…

Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 12, 2016 5:02 am

Nick, the price of wind is immaterial. The question is the total costs and emissions of two systems compared, one with a given percentage of wind, the other without.
My contention is that if you add wind you do not get to close down any conventional, and you do have to add large amounts of transmission, not mention install the wind, so the result is simply to increase costs and emissions.
Global warming may be real and dangerous, but wind is not a way to ‘tackle’ it. Untill batteries become free.

Reply to  michel
December 12, 2016 5:02 am

Look at Germany for an example of this in action.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 12, 2016 9:59 am

Those levelised costs do not include the additional cost of wind. The report by Ruth Lea in 2012 shows very similar levelised costs as Nick Stokes table, but also show the extra costs for wind which are ignored. The extra cost for onshore wind is quoted as £60/ MWh and for offshore wind is £67 / MWh, taking the onshore wind cost to around 144 £/MWh and for offshore wind to about 189 £/MWh (I say about because her costs are 2012, not 2016).
That makes onshore wind twice as expensive as coal and offshore wind three times as expensive as coal. It also means even onshore wind is much more expensive than nuclear. And of course intermittent.
The extra costs are because of:
1. Extra system costs for fast response plant because of intermittency
2. Planning reserve
3. Required transmission ie wind farms are in remote places

Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 13, 2016 4:37 pm

Yes Nick but you are glossing over one essential difference– unreliability – meaning that the effective price of wind is not constant as you argue if you take into account either the economic and social cost of the loss of power or the cost of standby backup fossil fuel power to avoid the former when the wind does not blow ( incidentally the turbines still draw on the grid even when there is insufficient wind to turn them )
The essential problem with Wind is it is intermittent whereas coal, gas and nuclear supply reliable continuous base load power So how much is reliable power worth ? -you dont know until you dont have it
Just ask the enraged industries of South Australia where wind supplies up to 40 % of electricity when the wind blows which they discovered to their costs is not all the time .
SA has twice now had near and actual blackouts when the wind failed to blow and or the windmills tripped off for whatever reasons
40% renewables mostly wind SA -preening themselves on being so green -actually relies on back up from largely brown coal- powered electricity from neighboring Victoria brought to SA via a connector line .
When that trips under load demand because the SA wind generators are not turning or is down for maintenance SA is in strife.
I understand similar posing is done by the Germans busily closing down nuclear to appease the idiot greens meanwhile importing nuclear fed power from France but also returning to coal because they need back up for unreliable wind.
Thus for the UK to subsidize by 300 Billion pounds such an unreliable energy source as wind which is going to require costly stand by back up from gas seems to be the height of “gesture politics” idiocy which you seem to think is OK
As you might gather from the above if all the 300 B pounds goes to subsidize wind generator construction then the UK well find there is yet more to pay to subsidize back- up gas powered stations on standby or maybe fund inter connector lines to nuclear fueled France?

Martin A
December 11, 2016 3:32 pm

£300B / 60M = £5000 per UK person.

Reply to  Martin A
December 11, 2016 3:34 pm

cunulative from 2014 to 2030.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
December 11, 2016 4:17 pm

So around 330 pounds a year per person, with around a 60% labour participation rate. So that’s about 550 pounds a year per worker.
Last time I was in the town where I used to live in the UK, I took a look at the job ads, and most were in the 15-20,000 a year range. I’m guessing most of those people won’t be happy to know they have to pay out another 550 pounds a year from their salary to ‘save the planet’.
And, actually, it’s worse. The public sector will demand higher wages to compensate for the higher costs, so that will probably end up being about 1,000 a year from the pockets of the real workers who do the actual work.

December 11, 2016 5:15 pm

in light of Theresa May’s expressed priority of supporting ‘just about managing’ families. After all, these costs “are borne disproportionately by the less well off, the elderly and the vulnerable.”
Deplorable JAMs

December 11, 2016 5:37 pm

Here is a chart showing existing and expected reactors. Existing UK nuclear plants are currently rated at 8700 MWe, but deliver closer to 8300 MWe at most. As I write, it is about 7600 MWe. Most of the older plants are down-rated up to 30% due to concerns over aging graphite moderator.
Future reactors show a greyed out Sizewell C because I don’t expect to see it built. It’s possible 3 × AP1000 or ABWR reactors may be built there instead but unlikely … The site is owned by EdF, who are state-owned French, as is their preferred reactor the fabulously complex, expensive German/French design: the EPR, beloved of the UK nuclear establishment, made by state-owned French AREVA.comment image

Reply to  mark4asp
December 11, 2016 10:41 pm

Mark4asp, isn’t Torness due for closure in 2023? Focusing a bit on current Scottish de-carb targets – by 2050, 80% of both vehicular traffic and domestic heating to be of renewables electric origin. Utterly farcical.

December 11, 2016 5:38 pm

Strange, no image. Let me try that again:comment image

Reply to  mark4asp
December 11, 2016 5:53 pm

Here is a table showing existing and expected UK reactors. Existing UK nuclear plants are currently rated at 8700 MWe, but deliver closer to 8300 MWe at most. As I write, it is about 7600 MWe. Older plants are down-rated up to 30% due to concerns over aging graphite moderator.
Future reactors show a greyed out Sizewell C because I don’t expect to see it built. It’s possible 3 × AP1000 or ABWR reactors may be built there instead but unlikely … The site is owned by EdF, who are state-owned French. Their preferred reactor is the fabulously complex, expensive German/French design: the EPR, beloved of the UK nuclear establishment, made by state-owned French AREVA. What a coincidence two state-owned French companies working in tandem to deliver the most expensive nuclear power design in the world. Made that way to meet ridiculous standards imposed by paranoid Germans in the 1990s, who, since then, decided they did not want it anyway.
At risk of annoying TPTB I’ll repost the explanatory text, which awaits in the purgatory of moderation.

December 11, 2016 7:06 pm

A useful way to explain this is to take wind alone. UK currently has 14,253 MWe of wind installed (see table). It delivers about 3,788 MWe of power (on average). UK demand is, on average, about 11 times that. At today’s prices, 14 years of this costs £26.887 bn in subsidy. Multiplied by 11, it’s £296 bn, which is close to Lilley’s figure. My calculation was only for 14 years: 2017 – 2030. See table for calculation.comment image
Future wind subsidies will be contracts for difference, CfD. Current subsidy is mostly FiTs (feed in tariffs). Under the FiT scheme, I the generator earns the FiT even when no electricity is used. They are paid for all they generate, even when the electricity must be dumped. My calculation above does not show that. I also know that some offshore wind farms will get contracts for difference of up to £152/MWh (at 2013 prices, rising with inflation).

Reply to  mark4asp
December 11, 2016 7:13 pm

Nice calculation, but it ignores the cost of backup at 100% of typical delivered power or of the currently unavailable storage, which would jack up the price of wind by some large amount. So the 300 billion pounds is an underestimate of the cost?

Nick Stokes
Reply to  mark4asp
December 11, 2016 8:25 pm

“Extra cost 10,588”
No, you can’t do that. You’re comparing a LCOE, which includes new construction costs etc, with a present market price of product. As the GWPF table shows, on that basis no kind of new plant can pay for itself.

December 11, 2016 7:41 pm

The reality is that the climate change we have been experiencing is caused by the sun and the oceans over which Mankind has no control. There is no real evidence that CO2 has any effect on climate and plenty of scientiic reasoning to support the idea that the climate sensivity of CO2 is zero. If one believes the so called greenhouse gas warming theory, the primary greenhouse gas is not CO2 but rather H2O which will be uneffected by the effort, There are many good reasons to be conserving on the use of fossil fuels but climate change is not one of them.
To eliminate CO2 emissions caused by the use of fossil fuels, the UK needs to go back to a time when their forests and farms provided all the fuel required to cook with, to heat their homes and to operate a horse based transportation system. To go back to such an energy system that does not make use of fossil fuels, the UK will have to substantially reduce their population and turn current urban and suburban areas back into forests and pasture lands.

December 11, 2016 8:02 pm

Ok, the report exposes the UK’s exorbitant and criminal cost of replacing fossil fuel power with worse-than-useless renewable electricity. We’ve known this all along. BUT, if only the report had also included the hypocrisy of one other blindingly obvious energy cost. Heating Oil.
Whilst every city and town within the UK has both mains electricity and gas, about 70% of rural villages still heat their homes and commercial premises with kerosene. My point is, that if our politicians really believe that burning fossil fuels is so ‘evil’, then why don’t they invest the ‘billions’ on a nationwide infrastructure of UK gas pipelines in order to “save the planet”? After all, natural gas is supposed to be ‘cleaner’, isn’t it?
With a population of 12M living in village communities, there are also ‘out of town’ offices complexes, pubs, country hotels, conference centres, schools and farms who continue to burn oil in order to keep warm. And if we’re not burning oil with huge plumes of water vapour from our condenser combi-boilers, we’re burning sooty logs on our parlour stoves, open fires or (if foolish enough) relying on expensive propane.
Maybe we’re encouraged to burn heating oil because the tax we pay our government is about 12% higher than for gas or electricity. Just a thought.
Here’s a map of the UK showing areas without gas supply:

Reply to  GeeJam
December 11, 2016 11:25 pm

I live off the gas grid and burn about 2,000litres of kerosene per year. I also burn a large amount of wood. I pride myself on increasing my CO2 emissions and helping plant growth.

Reply to  Phillip Bratby
December 12, 2016 2:21 am

Well then you must have a private income.
you could save a huge amount by ditching the kerosene

Reply to  GeeJam
December 12, 2016 12:55 am

Yes Phillip, we also pride ourselves in getting through about 2,000 litres each year for all our hot water and heating (except 2 x electric convectors in our conservatory). Our log pile is replenished every autumn.
Aside from opening as any bottles of carbonated lemonade and fermented beer as possible, there’s not much more CO2 we can produce. But as they say, every little helps.

Reply to  GeeJam
December 12, 2016 2:25 am

So useless that last week wind provided 23% of UK electricity on one day and exceeded the 10GW contribution to the grid for the first time. I note we are due to install an amount of new wind equivalent to 1.5 times current wind capacity by 2020 – so by then we’ll be delivering 25GW or half UK demand via wind…
At the same time even on a winter’s day solar was delivering 2 GW and the first tidal turbine on the Meygen scheme started running… the first Tesla technology grid storage plant was opened last week at a Somerset wind farm.
In other news, leading UK industrial firms say that 14% could be knocked off UK demand (which has decreased 18% since 2000) by more LED lights and energy efficiency.

Gerry, England
Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 4:22 am

Lasted about an hour, but don’t let the truth get in the way of your great scoop.
In other news, industry leaders say that the UK could reduce its energy use by up to 50% by relocating all manufacturing to countries that don’t have stupid energy policies. Many said they are actively working on closing down their factories to follow the lead shown by the aluminium smelters.

Reply to  Griff
December 14, 2016 2:00 pm

you should have paid more attention in school, math’s & comprehension are obviously not your strong points.
Last year 14GW capacity of wind power gave us just 7.6% of demand (0.54% per GWcap)
If we install extra new wind equivalent to 1.5 times current wind capacity that = 35GW capacity.
It should give (0.54%x 35) ≈ 19% of annual demand; NOT 50%.
as most of the most productive wind sites are already taken, the total will be ~16%.

December 11, 2016 9:03 pm

My fervent hope is that Trump and Pruitt (EPA) will embolden others in and out of government to start calling a spade a spade, start pointing out the emperor of AGW has no clothes. That emboldening can spread to Britain, where Brexit has broken the ice, yet even Tory leadership still talks the talk on “carbon reduction”. What if national leader after leader stepped up and said “Carbon is not a pollutant. That’s right, I said it. The madness ends here and now.”?

Jarryd Beck
December 11, 2016 11:04 pm

Someone is actually kidding themselves into thinking that electricity would be cheaper in Australia with a carbon tax.

December 11, 2016 11:22 pm
Robert from oz
December 12, 2016 12:20 am

Jarryd that’s the chief scientist of the democratic republic of Australia who claimed that , be carefull.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  Robert from oz
December 12, 2016 12:55 am

Actually, not only him. There are a staggering number of people in Australia who believe a tax on energy will make it cheaper and provide jobs.

Robert from oz
December 12, 2016 1:12 am

I guess the number of people who believe electricity gets cheaper by taxing the crap out of it is proportionate to the number of village idiots squared .

Gareth Phillips
December 12, 2016 1:47 am

And meanwhile the UK government are subsidising just one nuclear lower plant to the tune of £60 billion, a cost likely to rise once building starts. This cost will be transferred to the consumer. As an extra much of the building programme will be carried out by Chinese governments supported by the French. You just could not make it up.

Reply to  Gareth Phillips
December 12, 2016 2:20 am

Yes, everyone from Greenpeace to Christopher Booker and the editorial teams of the Times, Mail and guardian are against Hinkley.
Uniquely opposed by left, right centre green and skeptic…
Never mind, EDF and Areva will go broke as soon as they start building it.

Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 9:19 am

Griff, didn’t you forget your Arctic Sea Ice Extent graph?

Reply to  Griff
December 12, 2016 9:31 am

“Griff, didn’t you forget your Arctic Sea Ice Extent graph?”
Did a Polar Bear eat it ??

Johann Wundersamer
December 12, 2016 1:51 am

Bullet proof ‘Brexit’ was right!
Peter Lilley MP: ‘Rising costs borne disproportionately by the less well off, the elderly and the vulnerable’

Gras Albert
December 12, 2016 2:59 am

The Climate Change Act is the single most effective item of UK parliamentary legislation in the last 300 years at transferring money from the poor to the rich.
Why?, because the poor pay the subsidies which are presented to the land owning rich…

Robin Hewitt
December 12, 2016 3:06 am

I am elderly in England with a house. Our energy provider says for two of us this year we can expect to pay £935 for gas and electricity. The government has contributed a £200 Winter fuel help us with that. Gasoline is £1.16 a litre but I do not think that is a green tax. I do not feel burdened, is this all yet to come?

December 12, 2016 9:24 am

When I went to work at the CEGB some 30 years ago the mantra that was repeated day in and out was that electricity cannot be stored and has to be produced as needed. I remember that they had timetables predicting daily consumption of electricity . In drawing up their daily predictions they looked at the television schedules including the commercial breaks when more electricity was needed because people went to the loo or put on their electric kettles to make a cup of tea. They had their forecast of electricity usage in Britain down to a fine art. I only worked there a couple of years but I often wondered how come the green zealots managed to overcome so much knowledge and experience to push their agenda. Surely the there was some resistance from the engineers and managers ?
Th’ electricity cannot be stored’ argument is the one argument I use that is successful in persuading people of the inviability of the so-called renewable sources. It pains me to see how stupid the average Briton has become over the past fifty years and how much knowledge, and experience of the production and generation of energy has been jettisoned because of the green agenda.

Reply to  JMR
December 12, 2016 10:40 am

The end around came from politicos with lots of public money and some not-ready-for-prime time technology. Details and professionalism do not fit in with that scenario.

December 12, 2016 10:36 am

Audits can be devastating for dreamers and schemers.

R. Wright
December 13, 2016 9:16 am

If only there was some way for this 300 billion to be diverted back to the British public. Sigh.

December 19, 2016 6:13 am

I’m sorry for all the people of Britain who are forced to believe in such silly theory that global warming is happening because of the CO2. If the former is awarded the Nobel Prize to deceive and lie, that award should be immediately assigned to those who invented the CO2 as the main culprit of climate change. 300 billion pounds or euros, is so great suspicion that a country of 50 million inhabitants should be spent per 6000 pounds per capita.
Here I offer a solution. For only 0.03% of the 300 billion, I will save 299 billion and you will see that it is not CO2, but tycoon policy, which does not spare his people, only to enrich individuals, but are not aware that their life expectancy as well as those robbed citizens.

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