Renewables – Fossil Fuels = Energy Poverty: European Edition

Guest “the math is simple” by David Middleton

Energy poverty in Europe is linked to expensive renewables
It appears that policymakers are gathering in Glasgow to speed up killing fossil fuels, precisely what already led to massive energy poverty in Europe.

November 6, 2021

By Mark Milke and Ven Venkatachalam

With the recent rise in the price of natural gas in Europe to five times where it was in early 2021, expect to see many more Europeans and those in United Kingdom plunged into what’s known as “energy poverty.”

From Greece to Great Britain and everywhere in between, the European electricity grid has increasingly been delinked from reliable affordable fossil fuels and hooked up to more expensive and intermittent wind and solar projects.

One result is Europeans pay twice for generated electricity: once for the existing sunk costs of existing fossil fuel (and nuclear in some countries) projects and again for renewable-based electricity projects. Another result is when wind and solar are not available, multiple nations in Europe and elsewhere are chasing the same available oil, natural gas and coal, pushing those fuel prices dramatically higher.   

Canadians — and indeed everyone else around the world — should pay attention. That’s because what Europeans are enduring and will suffer through again this winter will intensify thanks to what governments worldwide are pushing at the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP 26) at Glasgow, Scotland: An even faster assumed “phaseout” of fossil fuels.

But it’s just that past policy preference that has caused substantial energy poverty in Europe even before the price spike this autumn. (For those unfamiliar with the term, energy poverty is all about citizens too poor to pay their utility bills on time and/or keep their homes adequately warm).

Stephen Bouzarovski, a University of Manchester professor and chair of an energy poverty working group, estimated pre-pandemic, 80 million Europeans were already struggling to adequately heat their homes. Meanwhile, at least 12 million European households were in arrears on their utility bills.     

[…]

Western Standard

Stephen Bouzarovski’s energy poverty estimate was actually from a CNN Business article, which went on to quote an idiot from Friends of the Earth Europe…

Europe’s poor suffer as energy prices surge
By Walé Azeez, CNN Business – Oct 1

Millions of people across Europe may not be able to afford to heat their homes this winter as gas and electricity prices soar.

Experts, anti-poverty organizations and environmental campaigners are warning that the coronavirus pandemic and rising prices have intensified a longstanding problem tied to a combination of high energy costs, low household incomes and homes that aren’t energy efficient.

Recent research led by Stefan Bouzarovski, professor at the University of Manchester and chair of energy poverty research network Engager, found that up to 80 million households across Europe were already struggling to keep their homes adequately warm before the pandemic.

The European Union describes energy poverty as being unable to afford “proper indoor thermal comfort.” Only four European countries — France, Ireland, Slovakia and the United Kingdom — have official definitions, but experts say the problem is widespread.

[…]

“We should be seeing access to energy as a human right in the same way as we see access to water as a human right,” said Martha Myers, climate justice and energy campaigner at Friends of the Earth Europe, which is part of the Right to Energy Coalition.

[…]

CNN

Of course, the morons who demanded that Europe transition away from fossil fuels and nuclear power would demand that energy be treated as a “human right” and doled out free-of-charge. According to Ms. Myers LinkedIn page, she has a bachelors degree in “political anthropology” (WTF?) and a masters in “sustainable development and anthropology.” Clearly the only way to make a total goat-frack sustainable is to make it free…

Energy Poverty in Four Easy Charts

March 2021 electricity rates in select European nations, Australia, Canada and God Bless the USA. https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/electricity_prices/
Natural gas prices: Global LNG (blue), US Henry Hub (red).
https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/PNGASJPUSDM#0
US Natural Gas Production, Consumption and Proved Reserves.
https://www.bp.com/en/global/corporate/energy-economics/statistical-review-of-world-energy.html
Europe Natural Gas Production, Consumption and Proved Reserves.
https://www.bp.com/en/global/corporate/energy-economics/statistical-review-of-world-energy.html

Any questions?

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Streetcred
December 7, 2021 2:11 pm

What are the component costs of the comparable energy prices illustration? Are they the same across all countries?
The indicated price for Australia appears to be a little low at 22c / 23c … More like 27c and is only that low because there are now stripped out costs for ‘poles & wires’ and metering.

Streetcred
Reply to  Streetcred
December 7, 2021 2:15 pm

Urban Utilities under fire for rising water bills | The Courier Mail
An example of how they increase the cost of utilities.

Last edited 1 month ago by Streetcred
Rud Istvan
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 3:03 pm

David, here in Fort Lauderdale Florida with all our new CCGT I paid about $0.105/KWh at peak August 2021 demand. Just looked it up. We don’t do renewables in Florida, period. Unlike Texas ERCOT.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 4:11 pm

Based on EIA data, roughly 6.6% of Florida’s electricity comes from “non-hydroelectric renewables”. I couldn’t parse it any finer than that.

Alan Tomlin
Reply to  David Middleton
December 8, 2021 6:37 am

Wind farms would be a tough sell in FL because of all the bird life moving back and forth through the state with strong grass roots support from the many bird lovers in FL. Solar is increasingly promoted by FPL though (I see it monthly on my bill inserts!). I live in SW FL in winter and Ontario, Canada in summer and see the blight of the vast wind farms around the Ontario side of the Great Lakes. I’ve also seen Ontario electricity prices move up quite rapidly and steadily over the past 16 years as Ontario added more windmills (and gas plants to back them up). FPL pricing has been much flatter in the same period. Only when most Ontarians grasp the value destruction (subsidies, tax incentives, shedding of excess electrical production at bargain rates) of windmills will this particular nightmare end.

Bill Everett
Reply to  Alan Tomlin
December 8, 2021 9:42 am

Also, if someone with a large megaphone would inform everyone that the average yearly human contribution to atmospheric CO2 from 1960 through 2020 was only 9/100ths of one part per million of atmosphere.

Frank from NoVA
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 9:03 pm

“Florida Power & Light is owned by NextEra,..”

True, but FP&L is the regulated utility. As long as Florida’s public utility commission remains in rational (i.e., Republican) hands, all of NextEra’s goofy green economic rent seeking machinations will have no impact on Florida’s rate payers.

Joseph Campbell
Reply to  David Middleton
December 8, 2021 7:43 am

David: I agree. All one has to do is drive the various interstates; there is vast acreage covered by solar panel across the state of Fl…

H.R.
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 7, 2021 4:17 pm

Rud… what David said.

We snowbird in Florida and come down I-75. Somewhere not too after crossing into Florida from Georgia, there’s a big solar farm on the West side of I-75.

That said, it’s the only one I’ve seen. There may be more.

Great Greyhounds
Reply to  H.R.
December 7, 2021 5:25 pm

Middle Georgia, especially along I-75 has large number of trees being cut down to put up solar panel farms…

John Hultquist
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 7, 2021 5:59 pm

Rud, David, others – are there facility charges?

I live in an all-electric house on the dry side of the Washington Cascades.
The electric service is from a Public Utility District (PUD) and the rates are set in September. There is a “facility charge” now $25.50 per month, and an “energy delivered” charge of $0.0982 kwh. There is a minimum charge of $30.50 month.

I can supplement with wood, harvested on site, and used in a modern stove with a catalytic converter. Today I started using it because the night time temperatures are staying in the mid-20°s F.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  John Hultquist
December 8, 2021 8:54 am

Yes. I pay $8.41/month fixed facility charge for my 3br/3full bath condo.

Greg West
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 3:15 pm

Correct Mr. M– I pay $.34 per kWh during non-peak winter and as much as $.40 /kWh during summer peak demand. Texas you say?… hmm perhaps I hear the siren call.

lee
Reply to  Streetcred
December 7, 2021 7:43 pm

Yeah. My supply cost in WA is $1.0514 per day.

bonbon
December 7, 2021 2:12 pm

Weird, not one mention of US sanctions by Trump and Biden on NordStream 2 and the Houston, TX Enron spot price energy model imported by US vassal Brussels, causing untold misery across the EU.

The US has lost any reputation it had for a few years after WWII. Pity!

MarkW
Reply to  bonbon
December 7, 2021 3:07 pm

They aren’t mentioned because they aren’t relevant.
As to any loss of reputation, I wear your disdain as a badge of honor.

HotScot
Reply to  bonbon
December 7, 2021 3:07 pm

Riiigghhhttt…..

So Europes energy crisis is all America’s fault. Europeans can’t just screw thing up without help, despite a robust track record.

commieBob
Reply to  HotScot
December 7, 2021 3:23 pm

Maybe he/she/it thinks the EU has banned fracking because of American pressure.

Rich Davis
Reply to  commieBob
December 7, 2021 5:11 pm

Well, duh! Trump forced it on them to help his pal Putin. It’s all coluuuuuuuuuuuuusion.

John Endicott
Reply to  HotScot
December 8, 2021 7:47 am

I’m sure it’s not all America’s Fault. bonbon always reserves some amount of blame for Mark Carney and the British Banksters who ultimately control everything that happens in the world, at least according to his warped mind. Despite Brexit, Britain is still a part of Europe.

Robert W Turner
Reply to  bonbon
December 7, 2021 4:50 pm

Are you referring to the nation that has a large mobile force built up along a border of a nation they have already invaded before?
And “Houston, TX Enron spot price energy model”? You clearly don’t know a thing about how your cushy life is provided to you.

bonbon
Reply to  Robert W Turner
December 8, 2021 5:59 am

Those photos of Russian troops show the town Lemberg, not Lviv. Guess when that last appeared on a military map – hint Hi*tler. Such a map can only have come from a US goon who cannot even find Belarus. This balderdash was all over BildZeitung this week. Just imagine what happened when this map was mocked?
Now the one and only N*azi government, put into place by Biden, Kiev, is being used to try another Eastern Front – have the goons in D.C any idea how that sounds in Germany?
So the EU has 3 problems – the greens, the US bunglers, and financial spot price trading, all rolled into one real stink burger. Not yet clear if any government can handle the stink in the Ranch at the Crooked EU.

Last edited 1 month ago by bonbon
bonbon
Reply to  bonbon
December 8, 2021 6:07 am

The Crooked E

images.jpg
MarkW
Reply to  bonbon
December 8, 2021 9:12 am

Wow, just how deep down the rabbit hole of insanity do you intend to go?

pigs_in_space
Reply to  MarkW
December 8, 2021 12:27 pm

It’s OK he’s a Putin cook troll.
They learnt propaganda from the Stasi wonks that populated the DDR, then implemented the same cookbook in St Petersburg.

ATheoK
Reply to  bonbon
December 8, 2021 5:00 pm

Such a map can only have come from a US goon who cannot even find Belarus.”

Arrogant ignorance; Argumentum ad Ignorantiam.You don’t know so you assume those you dislike are the cause.

Pathetic.

Richard
December 7, 2021 2:13 pm

Griff? Griff?

HotScot
Reply to  Richard
December 7, 2021 3:08 pm

Down boy.

commieBob
Reply to  HotScot
December 7, 2021 3:30 pm

Griff let the dogs out … Griff, Griff, Griff

link

markl
December 7, 2021 2:18 pm

The Globalists want to bankrupt countries so they can gain control. The importance of energy to the world can’t be overstated. And contrary to the first chart my electricity in CA is $.25/kwh, not $.15, probably thanks to it being the self proclaimed “leader” in ‘renewable’ energy.

DMacKenzie
Reply to  markl
December 7, 2021 2:27 pm

They eased off the throttle at COP26….fearful that moving too quickly might foment a first world voter’s revolt….

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  DMacKenzie
December 7, 2021 3:13 pm

Ha ha! Voters? They are soooo last century, doncha know?

Ron Long
December 7, 2021 2:20 pm

“ANY QUESTIONS?” Yea, how did those hosers in Canada manage to have the lowest electricity price?

Timo, not that one
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 2:32 pm

Also nuclear.
Some of us have been quite successful in stopping industrial wind farms too.

MarkW
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 4:33 pm

Too little sunshine didn’t stop the UK or Germany.

curly
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 5:30 pm

Same ones who elected Trudie Zoolander?

Again.

BCBill
Reply to  Ron Long
December 7, 2021 4:52 pm

Conservatively we have a 3000 year supply of natural gas and thanks to US backed greentards we can’t build the pipelines to get it to market. We also have a superabundance of coal, oil and wood and a Prime Minister who is trained as a grade school drama coach and is a sympathiser of the Chinese Communists. He firmly believes our economy can run by printing money and bleeding Alberta. Meanwhile, our cheap energy is offset by paying anywhere from 125% to 400% of what Americans pay for the same goods. If energy wasn’t cheap, it is unlikely that many would choose to live in this very cold and expensive country.

Vuk
December 7, 2021 2:20 pm

First she said ‘Let them eat cakes’ and he nodded approvingly. then the guillotine took liking to their necks.
Let’s hope lessons from history are remembered.

Vuk
Reply to  Vuk
December 7, 2021 3:01 pm

Maybe Mutti Merkel remembered and decided to leave in good time, she couldn’t stand any longer Greens parroting ‘climate change’ catastrophism
not to mention the latest comment image

M-M.jpg
Last edited 1 month ago by Vuk
It doesn't add up...
Reply to  Vuk
December 7, 2021 4:09 pm

Yet if Europe doesn’t buy Russian gas it will just go on the cheap to China instead. The solution isn’t trying to prevent competition that might drive up costs for China, but instead promoting development of competing resources around the world to diversify supply and prevent shortage pricing. That means drill, baby drill! And finance it with Western money so that China doesn’t get to control the taps.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Vuk
December 7, 2021 6:44 pm

German “leadership” has led Germany to the brink of the cliff.

Do the leaders see the danger? It doesn’t look like it, although a few do seem to be coming to their senses. But will it be soon enough?

Temperature Record Data Mannipulators started this whole fiasco. If they had not dishonestly demonized CO2, none of this would be taking place.

griff
December 7, 2021 2:22 pm

A reminder that German electricity price has added tax, separate from any green levy.

And it is natural gas prices causing price hikes.

Pariah Dog
Reply to  griff
December 7, 2021 2:53 pm

Cheeses Crust, Griff, do you know what a circular argument is? Oh look, steadily increasing water temperatures caused my kettle to boil!

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Pariah Dog
December 7, 2021 3:15 pm

Too much CO2 in your kettle caused runaway warming, mate!

H.R.
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 7, 2021 4:27 pm

Ha! That’s how I’ll save on energy costs. I’ll just exhale into my kettle and let CO2 runaway heating do the rest.

It should work a treat, assuming “the science” is correct.

Now, what can I buy with my savings?

HotScot
Reply to  griff
December 7, 2021 3:10 pm

Sorry David. Nicked…..

image_2021-12-07_231018.png
MarkW
Reply to  griff
December 7, 2021 3:14 pm

griff, if you are going to lie, at least try to make it believable. Electricity prices have been getting higher for years, it’s only been the last few months that natural gas prices have been rising.

It doesn't add up...
Reply to  griff
December 7, 2021 3:31 pm

So why is that the most expensive electricity at the moment is in France, where gas has only a very minor role? The reason is capacity shortages caused by nuclear shutdowns. In Germany they are maximising coal and lignite burn, and that has been driving EUA allowances higher, adding to costs. Gas is reserved as much as possible for domestic heating. When they shut their own nuclear price rationing for industry and rotating outages are on the menu

Last edited 1 month ago by It doesn't add up...
Ted
Reply to  griff
December 7, 2021 4:32 pm

The chart is from March, long before the recent price hike from natural gas.

LdB
Reply to  griff
December 7, 2021 7:12 pm

So having less natural gas to meet emissions targets is going to bring the price down using Griff logic. That is why David is laughing at you because your comment is beyond retarded.

To bring prices down you need to make MORE GAS AVAILABLE it’s called the law of supply and demand.

Last edited 1 month ago by LdB
John Endicott
Reply to  LdB
December 9, 2021 5:32 am

Sadly, griff has never learned to follow the Kirk Lazarus rule.

Lrp
Reply to  griff
December 8, 2021 12:43 am

They need to add more solar and wind faster to bring prices down!

pigs_in_space
Reply to  griff
December 8, 2021 12:32 pm

WTF?
In that case how come our country which has the largest deposits of oil shale is now being told by the EU, we are dirty pigs if we use it to generate electricity,
(and are given diktat to leave it in the ground!) but nice smart (idiots) people if we use unreliable wind and non existent solar in winter.

Now guess who’s heating bill has doubled this year, with electricity doubled also.

Rud Istvan
December 7, 2021 2:22 pm

Renewables have 3 fundamental issues.

  1. They are intermittant, so require grid backup. Given European capacity factors, that means well over 75% of nameplate. And forces conventional fossil fueled backup to run at an economic loss also. The RWE financial disaster in Germany is but one proof example.
  2. They provide no grid inertia, destabilizing frequency and threatening blackouts. The only solution, adding synchronous condensers, is extremely expensive—so has been deployed exactly nowhere.
  3. They are inherently more expensive. I reworked the phony EIA onshore wind numbers a few years ago at Climate Etc in guest post “True Cost of Wind”. Correctly calculated at ‘only’ 10% penetration on the ERCOT grid, the LCOE of CCGT was about $57/MWh, while wind was about $146/MWh. About 2.6x more expensive. And per EIA, offshore wind is at least 3x more expensive than onshore wind. Hopeless BoJo UK nonsense.
Tom Halla
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 3:13 pm

And wind also introduces financial difficulties for conventional sources needed as backup, as the subsidy miners invested in wind do not have to pay for maintaining backup. So the subsidized wind tends to drive conventional out of the market.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  Tom Halla
December 7, 2021 3:25 pm

Yes. The present extreme is Germany (RWE example cited above) with UK not far behind. Will not end well with a winter high pressure/ low temperature/ low wind front. Coming soon enough.

It doesn't add up...
Reply to  Tom Halla
December 7, 2021 4:14 pm

In the UK grid balancing costs were £967m for September through November. Not so long back they were under £500m a year. That’s all about paying for backup generation when the wind doesn’t blow, or when it has to be curtailed to make way for generation that can provide sufficient inertia to lower the risk of instability leading to blackouts.

Last edited 1 month ago by It doesn't add up...
R K
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 7, 2021 8:20 pm

Rud;

4 They cannot provide power under load.
5 They cannot be protected from severe weather. All wind turbines suffer gear box and bearings failures of some degree by about the sixth to eighth year, many before that and many wind farms will not give failure statistics.
6 None work in severe cold or heat and constant stopping and starting is no good for any form of power or machinery

Geoff Sherrington
Reply to  R K
December 7, 2021 10:12 pm

Have any buyers of windmills asked for refunds because they did not produce what the makers guaranteed?
Or are we in a modern wonderland which has dropped the concept of performance guarantees?? Geoff S

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Geoff Sherrington
December 8, 2021 8:03 am

This enters the world of so-called “nameplate” ratings for PV modules and wind turbines. These number have very little relation to what a customer might expect to receive in terms of energy production. They are instead maximum voltage and current ratings needed for safety margins in system designs.

In PV the total number of modules is multiplied by the power rating, and then multiplied by an empirical derating factor that hopeful gives some meaningful information about energy production.

The issues of guarantees, funding, etc. is a whole other can of worms.

DCE
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 8, 2021 7:44 am

It has not been a surprise to me that the offshore wind costs have been devoutly ignored by proponents. Considering the hostile environment – salt water, a higher failure rate, smore frequent maintenance and higher maintenance costs hasn’t surprised this old engineer.

As mentioned by R K elsewhere, machinery like power generation equipment doesn’t really like the start-stop cycles, particularly in harsh conditions – heat, cold, high winds.

As I have to keep reminding wind proponents of the following:

– The energy may be free but the equipment needed to collect it is not.

– It is intermittent, variable, and not reliably dispatchable which can make the electrical grid fragile, particularly once the percentage of wind reaches a certain point.

– The service life and maintenance intervals aren’t anywhere near what manufacturers claim.

M Courtney
December 7, 2021 2:26 pm

Energy is a “human right” and should be doled out as of need. It should be paid for by those who can.

Energy is essential. It allows people to live, to be happy, to be free. It allows people to fulfil their potential.

I know that losers are afraid of challenges and want to pull the ladder up after them, to avoid competition. But they don’t need that. They could fight harder instead.
Everyone needs access to energy.

None of this has anything to do with renewables They are an expensive waste of time. But don[t use renewable boosterism as an excuse to deprive the poor of access to energy

M Courtney
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 3:25 pm

Yep. When have I ever hidden my political views?
They are openly displayed as I think they are right.

Ted
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 4:38 pm

One literally has to avoid thinking to actually agree with communism. Most public figures just use support for elements of it as a means to personal enrichment.

MarkW
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 4:46 pm

Marxism is based on a belief that enslavement is OK, so long as everyone is owned by government.

Farmer Ch E retired
Reply to  MarkW
December 8, 2021 8:35 pm

One of the most influential two dimensional thinkers in a multidimensional world.

Richard S Courtney
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 12:05 am

M Courtney,

I note that those who wish to oppose your “political views” have confused socialism with communism while ignoring your points which were,

Energy is a “human right” and should be doled out as of need. It should be paid for by those who can.

Energy is essential. It allows people to live, to be happy, to be free. It allows people to fulfil their potential.

It is not possible to pursue “life, liberty and happiness” when lacking sufficient food, energy, potable water and air to sustain life.

Opposing people having access to the essentials of life is to ignore morality and decency while – less importantly – opposing the fundamental human rights proclaimed by the US Constitution.

Richard

bonbon
Reply to  David Middleton
December 8, 2021 5:32 am

John Locke’s Life Liberty and Property was thrown out by Franklin in favor of Life Liberty and Pursuit of Happiness from Leibniz. The CSA reversed that for a few years with full British support.
The Declaration of Independence and Preamble state quite clearly that the General Welfare is the priority for any republican government, the first in history to do this. A model for the world.
And energy is the General Welfare – no industry, farming, learning is possible without it. Pursuit of Happiness needs to be powered.
This is long before Marx, and of course Marx’s British target.

Last edited 1 month ago by bonbon
MarkW
Reply to  Richard S Courtney
December 8, 2021 9:16 am

We didn’t miss his point, we just pointed out the insanity of it.
Once you decide that anything needed to provide life, health, happiness is a human right that must be provided by government, you have entered the realm where everything must be provided by government, and whether you call it communism or mislabel it as socialism, it still doesn’t work.

I’ve always been fascinated by those who declare that morality requires them to steal from others in order to help those in need.

John Endicott
Reply to  Richard S Courtney
December 9, 2021 7:48 am

Opposing people having access to the essentials of life…”

Nobody opposes people having access to the essentials of life, what they oppose is forcing others to provide those essentials without just compensation (that’s known as slavery).

MarkW
Reply to  John Endicott
December 9, 2021 5:21 pm

This is the third time in this thread that Richard has expressed the belief that opposing government “charity” is the same thing as opposing all charity.
It really is fascinating how socialists/communists have actually come to believe that only government is capable of doing anything.

In another article, he laments the facts that utilities were no longer owned and operated by the government.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 2:54 pm

I tend to disagree about the energy human rights thing. There are inalienable human rights (life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness—and also equality of opportunity, but not results). Almost nothing economic (including energy and food, excepting maybe basic education opportunity) should be amongst them.

Any system otherwise provides a disincentive for work to both the disadvantaged and the advantaged. Rather, society has an ‘economic’ obligation to provide ‘the most’ for ‘the least’ cost, as Marshalian free market supply and demand curves illustrate.

As a discrete US example, child welfare ‘Great Society’ payments and SNAP both provide incentives for single Moms to have more kids, rather than penalties for same to disincentivize bad behavior; contraception is cheap and not using it when obviously needed is bad behavior. No way that ‘empathy’ or ‘charity’ or ‘fundamental human rights’ digs out of that provable human behavioral hole.

Perhaps to some a harsh’ reality, but just the way the world ‘works’.

M Courtney
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 7, 2021 3:23 pm

Food, energy, water… even air by your standards should not be a human right?

You would starve a child and blame them for going fishing rather than hitting the books for their poor academic results.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 4:23 pm

Amusingly, that moral impetus, in the US anyway, stems from the Christian tradition of charity. If all the libtards screaming about keeping religion out of politics were serious, we’d cut off welfare payments immediately. Law of Unintended Consequences, here we come!

whatlanguageisthis
Reply to  D. J. Hawkins
December 8, 2021 5:54 am

They like to argue that conservatives should support welfare because of those Judeo-Christian values. I have always maintained that charity requires choice. Something forcibly taken isn’t the same as something voluntarily shared. Maybe we can start claiming lost property due to burglary as a tax deduction?

MarkW
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 4:43 pm

I would say that the moral obligation belongs on individuals. Saying society has an obligation implies that society has resources with which to satisfy these obligations. Society or government has no resources, individuals do. Before society can give anything to anyone, it has to first take it from someone who earned it.

LdB
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 7:19 pm

In most countries there is also a legal obligation to put the welfare of the citizens of that country in front of other citizens … to not do so usually comes under treason laws.

MarkW
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 4:44 pm

Nothing that has to be provided can possibly be a human right.
If you believe that others have an obligation to provide the things you want, you have declared a belief that you have a right to enslave others.

MarkW
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 5:37 pm

I’m not denying a moral obligation. I agree with you on that point.
I’m just pointing out that this obligation is on individuals. You can’t satisfy this obligation by voting to take money from other people in order to give to the poor.

MarkW
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 6:22 pm

Voting to have government take money from someone else and give it to the poor, in no way satisfies a personal, moral obligation to help others.

roaddog
Reply to  David Middleton
December 8, 2021 2:45 am

Wonderfully well-stated, sir.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 5:22 pm

That is not at all what I argued. You are wrong, and blinded to the truth of fundamental human rights. All else is pitiable socialism or worse, which historically never worked despite oft tried.

ATheoK
Reply to  David Middleton
December 8, 2021 7:52 pm

That is because they describe the actions as:

  • government requires taxes for the needy as decided by the government.
  • ()()() magic happens here ()()() Wage earners are poorer and no idea what happened to their monies.
  • Needy people allegedly receive goods/services.

N.B. that both Socialist Russia and Communist China allowed vast numbers of people to starve, so the state could use funds that should have gone to their food and services were used for state purposes.

One also notes that both groups that starved had the majority of the foods they raised seized for state purposes.

Germany, Cuba, Venezuela Socialist governments committed similar abuses for the “good of the state”. Germany’s abuses were truly horrific.

Judeo tradition specifies that the highest form of charity is totally anonymous.
The giver voluntarily contributes in such a way that the recipient can not learn who gave the charity.

Tzedakah
The Torah‘s word for the act of giving to the needy, tzedakah, although commonly translated as “charity,” more accurately means “justice”.
 
Level One: Helping someone become self-sufficient.
The most basic need of a human being is to feel needed and capable. Thus, the highest form of tzedakah is to help someone find a job or set them up in business.
This preserves their dignity, and at the same time transforms them from being a recipient into one with the capacity to give to others.

Level Two: Giving anonymously, where the recipient does not know the giver and vice versa.
Receiving mutually anonymous tzedakah takes much of the sting out of being on the receiving end.
It is far better when we lend aid to others unconsciously — when we give ourselves over to others so completely that our egos merge with theirs, and neither is conscious of being in a superior or inferior position.

Level Three: The giver knows the recipient, but the recipient does not know the giver.
In this level of tzedakah — which is the converse of Level Four — the donor’s ego has some room to express itself. Since the giver knows who is receiving his bounty, there is room for some sense of one-upmanship or dominance over the receiver. However, the beneficiary is unaware of who the donor is, and so his dignity is preserved.
The fact that Level Three is higher than Level Four is proof that we should take into account the other’s benefit before considering the possible disadvantages to ourselves.

Level Four: The recipient knows the giver, but the giver does not know the recipient.
The form of charity that occupies Level Four in Maimonides’ list: the giving is done in such a way that the recipient is aware of the identity of his benefactor but remains anonymous to him. In this case, the donor feels more humble, since he is not aware of to whom he is giving. However, the recipient’s feelings are not spared to the same extent, since he knows who gave him the charity.

In levels five through eight, the recipient and the giver are both known to each other. So even when the giving is done with utmost sensitivity and happiness to help, theirs is a relationship of superiority: the giver’s ego is gratified, and the recipient feels shame and inferiority because of his dependency.

Level Five: Giving before you are asked.
Learn to anticipate the needs of others even before they approach you. Don’t wait for the self-destructive behavior or the cry for help before stepping in to lend a hand.

Level Six: Giving generously, but only after being asked.
While it’s certainly preferable to be proactive, at the very least, don’t give a cold shoulder to those who approach you for help. You can never know just how laborious and awkward it was for them to ask you for a favor, and how desperately they are counting on you to respond graciously.

Level Seven: Giving less than you can afford, but doing so pleasantly.
The benefit of a friendly response is so powerful that it even offsets the sting of an underwhelming donation. Even if you don’t feel ready to commit yourself to meeting someone else’s needs to the full extent of your capacity, you can express genuine interest and empathy. A sincere expression of caring can satisfy the person emotionally and give him the strength to go on.

Level Eight: Giving grudgingly, with a sour countenance.
Giving grudgingly is certainly better than not giving at all, and thus merits the eighth place. But this is the lowest of all forms of charity. This form of giving is ironically selfish — it is not motivated by true caring or love, but rather by a sense of guilt or obligation. True tzedakah is accompanied by warm words and gentleness.

We say ‘thank you’ upon receiving from another because ‘taking’ is anathema to a human being’s need for independence. Saying ‘thank you’ is ‘giving’ in return, whereby, in a sense we level the playing field.

N.B. that government demanding citizen taxes for government use as food, housing and services for the needy are not included under any form of tzedakah, i.e., Justice.

LdB
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 7:29 pm

Newsflash they aren’t a human right there is a UN junk statement along those lines that is all. Currently the UNHCR is little more than junk status.

Last edited 1 month ago by LdB
John Endicott
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 8:35 am

Food, energy, water… even air by your standards should not be a human right?”

Because they’re not. They’re needs, not rights. But for the sake of argument, let’s assume they are rights. How far do those rights extend?

A right to food? What kind of food? Do you have the right to the finest (and most expensive) cuisine cooked by world class chefs? And what of the people who grow and prepare the food? where is their rights to profit from their labor?

A right to energy? how much energy? Do you have the right to more energy than needed to power a 20,000 square foot mansion? And what about the people who provide that energy? Where is their rights to profit from their labor?

A right to shelter? what kind of shelter? Do you have a right to a 20,000 square foot mansion? And what about the people who built that mansion? Where is their rights to profit from their labor?

etc.

bonbon
Reply to  David Middleton
December 8, 2021 5:40 am

It is a war on the core of the Constitution – the General Welfare.
In other words to go back to John Locke’s British retread.

ATheoK
Reply to  David Middleton
December 8, 2021 8:05 pm

Unless “freezing in the dark” is an odd pursuit of happiness… https://s.w.org/images/core/emoji/13.1.0/svg/1f609.svg

Happiness is when leftists have to share equally the injustices they foist on the general population.

Not that narcissistic leftists ever understand why they are suffering.

Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental condition in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration, troubled relationships, and a lack of empathy for others.”

old engineer
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 7, 2021 5:45 pm

Rud-

“child welfare ‘Great Society’ payments and SNAP both provide incentives for single Moms to have more kids”

Didn’t Bill Clinton”s welfare reform back in the 90’s stop some ot the rewards for more kids?

Drake
Reply to  old engineer
December 7, 2021 6:56 pm

That was Newt Gingrich’s welfare reform, vetoed by Clinton first, then signed when the polls came in showing the vast majority of the voters wanted a WORK requirement for welfare. That was then watered down to “work or retraining”, which Obama changed to retraining with massive payments to the “non-profit” training centers, i.e. another liberal full employment act.

DCE
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 8, 2021 7:53 am

Indeed, Rud. Too often the ‘rights’ to “This, That, and the Other Thing” ignore human nature, in this case the disincentive those ‘rights’ create. It is a lesson that has to be learned again and again…but a lesson that never sticks.

MarkW
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 3:23 pm

Food is essential.
Clothing is essential.
Housing is essential.
Transportation is essential.

Using your illogic, it is the job of the government to provide everything for everybody for free.
You must really love slavery, because that’s what you want for all of us.

It takes an especially sick person to equate not providing free stuff as “pulling up the ladders”.

Calling everyone who doesn’t want to support you for life a “loser”, just goes to indicate how much you hate those who have been more successful in this life.

BTW, I love the way you declare that it is someone else’s responsibility to provide for the poor. Hypocrite much?

M Courtney
Reply to  MarkW
December 7, 2021 3:34 pm

Starvation is acceptable.
Enforced nudity is acceptable.
Homelessness is acceptable
And they must stay there; hungry, naked and cold.

That person could have been the next Einstein. But you don’t need to worry about looking bad compared to a genius now.
Because you pulled up the ladders.

The point is, what platform does someone need to be able to compete?

MarkW
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 4:38 pm

Typical Marxist, unless government provides charity, there will be no charity.
If government doesn’t provide clothing, there will be no clothing.

And of course the standard lie that without government, we are all helpess babes who can’t possibly survive.

You have a mighty low opinion of your fellow man.

Projection perhaps?

M Courtney
Reply to  MarkW
December 8, 2021 2:49 am

Typical Marxist, unless government provides charity, there will be no charity.

If government doesn’t provide clothing, there will be no clothing.

As you object to having people able to stay warm in case they outperform you I’m fairly sure you would find an excuse not to feed them charitably too, if they weren’t empowered by society.
Actions speak louder than words.

whatlanguageisthis
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 6:12 am

As has already been stated, what you are advocating for is full on slavery. There was a time where a group of people were provided food, shelter and clothing in this country. This ‘service’ did not provide them with any potential for improvement of their lives, however. There was no ladder in all that ‘charity’.

Freedom comes with personal responsibility. Need shelter? Build one. Need food? Grow some. Need clothes? Make some. If you can’t do it directly, find someone who needs what you can do and trade for what you lack.

You don’t have to outperform everyone else to have the necessities. No one is going to forcibly remove your coat because you don’t have more than them. Just because you would only support the less fortunate through government doesn’t mean that is only way others would do it. You really do have a low opinion of your fellow man.

Graemethecat
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 7:39 am

Communists like you have always regarded people as mere automatons, bereft of volition or agency. Given half a chance, the vast majority of people are quite capable of looking after themselves. They don’t need the State to do this for them.

Unlike Communism, in a properly functioning Capitalist economy there is an abundance of food, clothing, shelter, and fuel, available to everybody in exchange for money.

John Endicott
Reply to  Graemethecat
December 8, 2021 8:14 am

People in M Coutney’s communist utopia have no agency of their own. Only government is allowed to have agency. the people must be enslaved for their own good, don’t you know.

Frankly, It’s a sick and disgusting world view. And one that has failed repeatedly everywhere it’s been tried. But, of course, our resident communist would tell you they just didn’t do it right. Funny how no communist has ever managed to do it right.

MarkW
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 9:21 am

What is it with you and your absolute inability to read correctly?

Once again, you proclaim that anyone who objects to government stealing from the workers in order to do “charity” work, doesn’t want there to be any charity or for anyone to help the poor.

Has your mind rotted to the point that you are incapable of believing that absent the force of government, anyone would be charitable?
If so that is more likely just another example of mental projection on your part.

John Endicott
Reply to  MarkW
December 9, 2021 4:08 am

Has your mind rotted”

He’s a communist, so yeah, it pretty much has. His numerous attempts to recast what other say to fit his warped viewpoint is merely the proof of it.

ATheoK
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 8:13 pm

As you object to having people able to stay warm in case they outperform you”

Absurd illogical speculation that you gin up out of your own ignorance and desire to force others to support alleged needy.

Alleged needy that you are unable to describe explicitly, only as comic book possibles.

Rich Davis
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 3:51 am

Do family, friends, civic, or religious organizations play any role in your thinking at all?

No, no of course not. As a totalitarian, you think that there should be nothing outside the state. Only government can be effective. And the more communist the government, the more effective. Cuba, Venezuela, DPRK—the world’s most effective and compassionate governments, am I right, M.Courtney?

Last edited 1 month ago by Rich Davis
bonbon
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 5:46 am

M Courtney,
Marx aside – you have run straight into the Hayek brick wall.
Prof. von Hayek of the London School of Economics (misnamed the Austrian School) has great sway in the USA today. There are a few Hayek ideologues prowling here. The word ¨socialism¨ sends them into a froth. Followers of his twin Milton Friedman have fits.

Hayekians and Feriedmanites fail to realize Britain’s Hayek targetted the unique US Constitution’s General Welfare Clause – it is almost comatose today.

Graemethecat
Reply to  bonbon
December 8, 2021 9:04 am

Pray tell us what Hayek and Friedman got wrong.

MarkW
Reply to  Graemethecat
December 8, 2021 9:23 am

They aren’t communists.

DCE
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 7:56 am

Sorry, but that is just another form of “What if-ism”.

How far do you go? How much are you willing to destroy just to make you feel better about having provided this, that, and the other thing?

ATheoK
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 8:10 pm

Speculation and fantasies, not reality.

M Courtney
Reply to  MarkW
December 7, 2021 3:35 pm

Also, why do you think I am not able to provide?
I earn and pay my taxes. I am willing to compete.
Do not accuse me of cowardice!

MarkW
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 4:41 pm

Reading comprehension just isn’t your thing, is it?
I never said you weren’t able to provide, I said that you wanted government to take other people’s money and do it for you.
I never said that you couldn’t compete, I said that you want government to pull down those who have been more successful than you.
I never said that you were a coward, I said that you are a hypocrite.

LdB
Reply to  MarkW
December 7, 2021 7:23 pm

Again as per above the government has legal obligations to it’s own citizens first. You can only argue touchy feely moral arguments for non citizens.

Drake
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 7:07 pm

Typical liberal, in this case communist.

“I earn and pay my taxes.” So what? I is clear from what you have written that you also vote to make other people pay their taxes to be spent on others who do not wish to support themselves.

But the real question is: How much of your own NON TAX money do you donate to charity, and I am not talking about XR of Planned Parenthood or some other leftist political cause, but actual functional charities that provide food, housing, clothing, etc. for the truly needy??

I have always thought there should be a line on the US tax form for do-gooders like yourselves that always think taxes should be higher to donate MORE to the government. And that line would be made public at the request of ANY taxpayer.

Let that be the case and we would know that people like you DO NOT put their money where their mouth is.

BTW, conservatives, by far, donate MUCH MORE, as a percentage of their income, to actual charities, than do leftists, and/or Democrats.

MarkW
Reply to  Drake
December 7, 2021 8:06 pm

In the US, the IRS maintains an address where you can send checks to if you feel your own taxes aren’t high enough.

John Endicott
Reply to  MarkW
December 8, 2021 8:08 am

I think we need a “virtue signal tax”. Anyone who clams taxes aren’t high enough triggers the obligation to pay the virtue signal tax, as clearly they aren’t paying enough by their own words.

John Endicott
Reply to  M Courtney
December 8, 2021 8:19 am

Do not accuse me of cowardice!”

A communist and a liar (not surprising, the two go hand in hand). He did not accuse you of cowardice. A search on this page (prior to my making this post) shows only one use of the the word “cowardice” – your post that I’m responding too. Even limiting it to “coward”, only shows two hits, your post and the post immediately in reply to your post.


MarkW
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 4:48 pm

You have declared that anything that is a needed for life is a human right and should be provided by government.
The problem with such idiocy is that pretty much everything is needed for life, so you are arguing for a world in which everything is provided by government.

Communism has never worked, and never will work, because it works against basic human nature.

commieBob
Reply to  MarkW
December 7, 2021 5:42 pm

“Oh, the world owes me a living.” link

Rich Davis
Reply to  MarkW
December 8, 2021 3:33 am

My daughter NEEDS an iPhone 13. I guess that’s a human right, too.

I wonder how M.Courtney would handle the case where there isn’t enough food or water to supply the whole population of parasites?

Oh, silly me, I forgot that there is no right to life, only a right to affordable broadband.

Rich Davis
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 6:17 pm

Pure rubbish Ingsoc doublethink!

This is why Britain is no longer and likely never again will be Great.

Nothing can be a right that requires somebody else to give the fruits of their labor away under coercion.

MarkW
Reply to  Rich Davis
December 7, 2021 8:07 pm

In the old days, we called people who were forced to work for the benefit of others, slaves.

LdB
Reply to  M Courtney
December 7, 2021 7:28 pm

That falls under treason for most countries … never going to happen.
What do you want next per capita share of earth resources?

You are going to have to stand in front of the tank to get that and if I am driving I promise I won’t stop.

John Garrett
December 7, 2021 2:33 pm

So simple that even a caveman can understand it— but it is apparently beyond the intellectual grasp of NPR, PBS, Pravda (a/k/a the New York Times), CNN, MSNBC, the WaPo, ABC, CBS, NBC, the La-La Times and, of course, the Grauniad.

Rich Davis
Reply to  David Middleton
December 7, 2021 6:54 pm
Tom Abbott
Reply to  John Garrett
December 7, 2021 7:09 pm

“So simple that even a caveman can understand it”

Love it!

JJTadstone
December 7, 2021 2:45 pm

Our net cost for electricity in Scotts Valley, CA is $0.30 per KWH – above Belgium!

commieBob
December 7, 2021 2:46 pm

Men Countries, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, one by one.

They will continue to give lip service to CAGW long after they have realized it’s bunk.

commieBob
Reply to  commieBob
December 7, 2021 4:03 pm

Something like Dutch Tulip Mania.

HotScot
December 7, 2021 3:01 pm

Any Questions?

Was I right to invest £1,500 in a standby petrol generator this autumn for the coming UK winters (several of them)?

Or was I right?!

Rud Istvan
Reply to  HotScot
December 7, 2021 3:38 pm

Smart move given dumb UK energy policy. Try to get pure petrol w/o ethanol which collects water vapor from air and eventually gums up the works. Been there, done that both at my Wisconsin farm and Georgia mountain cabin. Cleaning/rebuilding injectors/carburetors is a PITA. In rural US areas, pure gas (petrol, with no ethanol) is usually available at one pump in regular octane.

For different reasons (hurricanes) all South Florida grocery stores, gas stations, and all post 1993 Andrew high rise condos now have backup emergency nat gas ‘spark ignited diesel’ generators to keep freezers, gas pumps, and elevators/common area lights on when the power inevitably goes out. The natgas pipelines are underground and separately pressurized, so hurricane ‘immune’.

It doesn't add up...
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 7, 2021 4:59 pm

In the UK petrol is offered with 5% or 10% ethanol. But you can extract it using water and separation of the resultant layers of liquid.

HotScot
Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 8, 2021 4:27 am

Rud,

got that covered. Briggs and Stratton do a fuel additive that extends the life of unleaded out to 3 years.

I’ll still run it up once a month though.

LdB
Reply to  HotScot
December 7, 2021 8:30 pm

It was a good idea until everyone in your neighborhood finds out that you are the only one with power 🙂

HotScot
Reply to  LdB
December 8, 2021 4:24 am

That’s OK, I have a bouncer arranged for the front door and am going to charge an entry fee.

Drinks and canapés are extra.

Boris
Reply to  HotScot
December 7, 2021 8:39 pm

I have installed a backup generator for my house here in Canada. With the deregulation of the power industry in the early 2000’s we see more power failures and blackouts due to the complexity of all of the added players involved. Instead of the power plant and the distribution system owned by one company for an area there are now about five layers of players involved in the system.
When the lights went out last summer due to a trip of a feeder and the high demands it took the system right down to nothing for the whole province of Alberta. It took them over eight hours to recover from that and I had my generator running the whole time. Nobody else in my neighborhood has a generator.
I also modified my generator to run on Natural gas (preferred), Gasoline (next preferred was the original fuel) or propane if I remove a plug in the regulator and add the hose that came with the kit.
The California power problems the last three years showed that during extended periods of blackouts and shutdowns gasoline was hard to get due to a number of gas stations that had no backup power system. Another problem with California is if you are a commercial property like a gas station and you try to install an emergency power generator on your property you are suddenly inundated with Bureaucrats spouting regulations, environmental reviews and permitting requirements that would make a saint weep in despair.it is far easier to jury rig a small backup generator to feed power to the gas pumps but a bigger issue is the payment systems were all shutdown as well. Cash only.

Retired_Engineer_Jim
Reply to  Boris
December 7, 2021 9:33 pm

Small fossil-fueled engines will be outlawed in California soon.

HotScot
Reply to  Boris
December 8, 2021 4:35 am

I ordered a dual fuel Propane/Petrol genny but they delivered the petrol only. PITA and I couldn’t be bothered crapping around to return it.

Blackouts in the UK are liable to be short lived, the National Grid is common to everywhere so they will likely have a rolling blackout system well organised.

I would say, at most, four hours tops for any organised blackouts as it’s too risky for the elderly.

The genny has a 20 litre fuel tank so good for around 20 hours according to the specs and I have 20 litres stored in gerry cans.

We have two or three vulnerable neighbours so we’ll organise to get them over for the blackout periods for tea and toast.

keith robinson
December 7, 2021 3:16 pm

For the Greens it’s a feature not a problem for to force people back to the mythic rural ideal they wish too .There is a need to vastly reduced power availability and consumption. They know renewables can never meet the demands of a modern society, and they see nothing wrong with that at all.

Rich Davis
Reply to  keith robinson
December 7, 2021 6:31 pm

Of course they’re right. We can all party like it’s 1499! The Amish are doing it aren’t they?

Retired_Engineer_Jim
Reply to  Rich Davis
December 7, 2021 9:34 pm

I believe that the technology cutoff-date for the Amish is ~1860.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Retired_Engineer_Jim
December 8, 2021 3:23 am

As long as there’s no devil’s lightning, English!

Now it should be pretty obvious that 330 million people can’t really live like the Amish, never mind 15th century style. How long would it take to breed enough horses and clear enough land for their farms?

It’s painful even to imagine some of today’s snowflakes trying to get past day one without their iPhone, and without grief counselors!

The Malthusians also intend to have a major culling of the population.

Doug D
December 7, 2021 3:24 pm

There will be plenty for the oppressors. Perhaps the poor should occupy the mansions of the rich . I’m glad I have a truck and a fireplace, If gas is too expensive I will cut down the forest
There will be food riots all over Europe … It is critical to remove the liberals …If not by the vote then by ……

Joel
December 7, 2021 3:25 pm

The cost per household might be misleading. How much of the actual cost is subsidized by the government and covered by general taxation. How much of the true cost of electricity is hidden from the casual observer?

Peter Barrett
December 7, 2021 3:26 pm

David, to bring you up to date on the excruciatingly painful situation here in the UK, more than twenty power supply companies have gone out of business (voluntarily or forced into receivership) in the last couple of months because increases in retail power costs are conflicting with the government imposed price cap.

We are now back in the monopolistic position we had before all the greencrap and increased government intervention in the market. https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/United-Kingdom/electricity_prices/ states that we are paying 0.2GBP/kWh, my latest tariff (government regulator allocated) is £0.2276, which will increase by 40% in April 2022. In addition we pay the power supply company a further daily charge of £0.3032, an increase from £0.19 per day less than two years ago, which at our rate of domestic usage adds about another 2.5 pence per kWh.

Many poorer consumers are now undergoing the third energy transition:
1) coal to oil
2) oil to gas
3) gas to furniture.

It doesn't add up...
December 7, 2021 3:49 pm

Here’s what has been happening ot UK wholesale electricity prices. On top of these as about 12p/kWh (£120/MWH) in grid costs and green subsidies and the 5%VAT and the retailer costs and margins margins, not reflected in the current pricing regime which is capped by OFGEM. Perhaps instructive is to look at the Octopus Agile tariff, which includes a cap of 35p/KWh, but otherwise is not capped by OFGEM and is supposed to reflect the wholesale market for every half hour (it even offered negative prices on windy Sundays during lockdown last year). I has been spending most of the time close to the contractual cap.

https://agileprices.co.uk/

Of course, the fact that they are not subject to the OFGEM cap probably means they are trying to get as much as they can from these customers before they desert, so it may not really reflect lower costs.

Probably just as well that storms knocked out so many power lines a fortnight ago when it was cold. The demand cut meant that supply shortages were not really exposed. BUt the UK has been frequently exporting to France to help cover its shortfalls.

UK Day Ahead Power.png
Marcus
December 7, 2021 3:51 pm

David,
“Clearly the only was to make a total goat-frack sustainable is to make it free…”
Should “was” be “way” ?

Robert W Turner
December 7, 2021 4:40 pm

“Clearly the only was way to make a total goat-frack sustainable is to make it free”

George Daddis
December 7, 2021 5:54 pm

What if the US (and Canadian) government subsidized academics studying “energy poverty” at the same level as they do for grants into “catastrophic climate change”?

Rich Davis
Reply to  George Daddis
December 8, 2021 4:17 am

Silly question. We would have more government programs that give free energy to the right voters at the expense of deplorable voters.

Isn’t that already happening? It’s not the indigent who suffer from energy poverty, it’s the proud sap who works to provide for himself and won’t submit to throwing himself entirely on the tender mercies of the almighty state. If he would just give everything up, he would own nothing and be happy.

It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a working man to enter the People’s Republic of Heaven.

Boris
December 7, 2021 8:18 pm

One of the factors that has allowed Germany and others to unburden themselves from coal and other fossil fuels to produce power is the grid ties that are connected to France. France generates 80% of its electricity from Nuclear power and was able to supply for a “Nominal” fee power on demand to the likes of Green Germany.

One slight issue raised its head just last week with France’s Nuclear industry due to Covid most of the scheduled maintenance on these reactors was differed to a later date. Well I do not know if the rest of the EU is aware of this or not but in the nuclear industry bad things tend to happen when you put things off or cut down on Maintenance that MUST be performed in a timely manner.

So if there is a shortage of natural gas to run power plants and a shortage of wind to turn the windmills you can now add that at least one or two of Frances Nuclear plants will be down at a time for extended maintenance until they get caught up again. In the old days they would try to do these shutdowns during every season except winter due to demands but now they have no choice but to do shutdowns all year to get caught up.

One other message expressed was this next maintenance cycle is going to last at least three years of lower outputs until they can get back on a normal schedule track.

Just goes to show you the Green people did not factor in a pandemic to throw a Large monkey wrench into the works.It would be too easy to start up coal plants again but since a lot of them were converted to natural gas or torn down they may have a little bit of an issue with that.It is really hard to fix Stupid but now it is going to start killing people by freezing them to death.

Ben Vorlich
December 7, 2021 8:50 pm

In the UK so far in 2021 gas has supplied 50% or more of our electricity at some point in the day on 177 days, wind has done this on 29 days.

Evenn today at 4:40am on a very windy day wind I supplying 41.24%.

michel
Reply to  Ben Vorlich
December 8, 2021 12:12 am

Need to ask what ‘supplying’ means, in an environment where its compulsory to buy as much wind generated power as they supply, whether you need it or not.

Imagine its milk and we have a central Milk Board which buys all of the fresh milk and then redistributes to local suppliers. There is a legal compulsion that this Board shall buy all the organic milk on offer.

The Board consequently organizes itself so that when organic supply rises, it turns down other supplies, who then deliver to butter and cheese makers.

It also levies a premium on all non-organic milk supplies to allow it to charge the same price for organic and non-organic milk. The result is higher milk prices for the consumer.

The Guardian and the BBC then announce that organic milk is a great and growing success. Last year, organic milk supplied 45% of the fresh milk demands of the nation! And its rising!

Yes, indeed. You can make this happen if you rig the market in this way. What you cannot do however, in the case of energy, is make the renewable supply competitive either in price or in quality of product delivered.

This comparison actually overstates the reasonableness of the present policy. If it were lettuce, we’d have supermarkets forced to buy all the lettuce certain producers offered whenever they offered it. Like, a months supply one Monday, nothing for a couple of weeks, then a week’s supply, then two months supply a week later.

And then the Guardian and BBC would triumphantly announce the program was a great success. The chosen suppliers would be delivering a higher and higher proportion of the nation’s lettuce. Never mind whether the consumers were getting what they wanted when they wanted at the price they wanted. Never mind what happened to producers outside the magic circle.

Its a giant scam.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Ben Vorlich
December 8, 2021 4:24 am

Well there you go! All you need now is every day to be very windy and about 60% of the demand to go away. A good start on that will be sending the last of industry to China or India. Then you probably only need about a quarter of the population to freeze to death and stop their unreasonable demands for power.

Last edited 1 month ago by Rich Davis
December 7, 2021 10:04 pm

David, the Groningen field has been written off, how does that work out in the European gas reserves?

michel
December 7, 2021 11:17 pm

Paul Homewood has explained that in the UK renewable electricity (solar and wind) is being subsidized to the tune of about £470 per household.

https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2021/01/29/renewable-subsidies-reach-record-high/

And he gives a detailed breakdown showing the derivation of this number. Its not open to serious question.

Much though not all of this comes from what is essentially a tax on electricity. In another post Homewood has explained this:

https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2021/02/15/homeowners-fleeced-by-renewable-subsidies/

And he refers to the Ofgem statistic on the makeup of a home electricity bill which can be found here:

https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/energy-data-and-research/data-portal/all-available-charts?keyword=electricity%20bill&sort=relevance

What’s going on in the UK is that the Guardian and BBC triumphantly welcome ever increasing percentages of electricity supply being generated by renewables.

However there are two things wrong with this that they leave out totally. One, as you can see from the above, is the costs, much of which are in the form of a regressive tax levied on a necessity. This directly produces fuel poverty. There really are people in the UK who hesitate to make a cup of tea or boil a kettle to fill a hot water bottle because of the cost of electricity.

This is made worse in its effects because the poorest already often buy electricity in the most expensive way, in the form of prepayment plans.

The second is that the measure of production is not real. The numbers measure how much is being produced. However there is a renewables obligation – the supply companies are obliged preferentially to take and pay for renewable generation whether they need it or not.

So what the numbers show is not in any useful sense the contribution of renewables to the energy supply. They rather show that if by law you make the companies buy something they do not need, they will indeed pay for it, and they will pass the costs on to consumers. But this does not show that at the point of supply there was any need for it.

I don’t know and am not sure how you could calculate how much of the renewable supply would actually have been bought if there were no renewable purchase obligation, and if prices for renewables and conventional were equivalent. That is, if the renewable supply was only bought when needed and when competitive in terms of quality of supply.

We can be absolutely certain however that it is much lower than what the BBC and Guardian are reporting as the contribution of renewables to UK supply.

We are in fact producing fuel poverty among the old and the poor by means of a regressive tax on a necessity, which has the result of delivering expensive and unreliable electricity which the grid does not need at the times when its delivered. The costs of this can be measured by the higher death rate in the UK every winter.

Its a religious mania we are dealing with. Just as in the case of Grenfell cladding, the mania was to insulate with cladding with the top priority being reduction of heating energy, not particularly to save cost, but to reduce CO2 emissions. The fact that this created serious safety issues for the buildings in question was brushed under the carpet. Similarly at the moment the fact that we are increasingly taxing a necessity by a tax which falls disproportionately on those who can least afford it is also ignored or obfuscated.

And we are doing it in order to install on a grand scale generating equipment which is simply not fit for the purpose of supplying the grid, which even were it fit for purpose would not materially reduce UK carbon emissions, and where even were it to do that, would make no measurable impact on global emissions.

Its about as sensible a policy as looking for witches to explain the failure of crops.

Anthony Banton
Reply to  michel
December 8, 2021 5:53 am

Paul Homewood has explained that in the UK renewable electricity (solar and wind) is being subsidized to the tune of about £470 per household.”

Subsidies applied by the UK Gov to the fossil fuel industry …..

https://cdn.odi.org/media/documents/11787.pdf

“The UK’s transparency and reporting on fossil fuel subsidies remains relatively poor compared with other European countries including France, Germany, Italy and Sweden. The fossil fuel estimates in this study are therefore likely to be an underestimate.
• In recent years the government has significantly reduced the tax rate for North Sea oil and gas production. Overall fiscal support to oil and gas production was £665 million (€850 million) per year between 2014 and 2016.
• Subsidies to households include reduced VAT on fuel and power consumption, resulting in £3.6 billion (€4.7 billion) per year in foregone government revenue.
• Subsidies to the transport sector, including tax breaks for diesel, amounted to £7.4 billion (€9.5 billion) per year on average between 2014 and 2016.
• The UK’s public finance institutions and the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), which is 73% state- owned, together provided financing to oil, gas and coal at home and abroad worth £1.3 billion (€1.9 billion) per year between 2014 and 2016, with RBS accounting for £937 billion (€1.2 billion) of this support.“

so you expect renewables to compete with no subsides given that?

bigoilbob
Reply to  Anthony Banton
December 8, 2021 6:22 am

Not to mention their unfunded asset retirement obligations. Norway has cash put back to pay for their share. The UK? FYI, don’t know how many of these $ have been properly bonded, but the tax exemption for P&A’s and platform abandonments is clearly, merely, just another form of corp. welfare. I.e., a subsidy.

https://image-src.bcg.com/Images/BCG-The-North-Seas-%24100-Billion-Decommissioning-Challenge-Mar-2017_tcm56-149950.pdf

https://www.woodmac.com/news/opinion/uk-north-sea-decommissioning-the-17-billion-challenge/

Dave Andrews
Reply to  Anthony Banton
December 8, 2021 7:23 am

Almost 23% of every UK electricity bill is for environmental reasons mainly subsidies for unreliables and these amounted to £11,2 billion in 2020/21 and will rise to £12.5 billion in 2024/25.

Vat is charged at 5% on fuel and power consumption because if it wasn’t the number of households in fuel poverty would rocket and fuel poverty charities say around 10,000 people a year already die because they can’t afford to keep their homes warm.

To then imply that the financing banks make available to oil,gas and coal is some kind of subsidy is ridiculous.

Last edited 1 month ago by Dave Andrews
It doesn't add up...
Reply to  Dave Andrews
December 8, 2021 7:46 am

Of course the VAT “subsidy” applies to wind turbines every bit as much as it does to a coal fired power plant. Even more for the solar panels on a roof: no VAT at all is charged on consumption, and indeed it is effectively rebated off exported kWhs.

Graemethecat
Reply to  Anthony Banton
December 8, 2021 7:52 am

Banton seems to think a reduction in VAT (tax foregone by the State) is equivalent to a subsidy (a direct cash payment to the oil industry).

MarkW
Reply to  Graemethecat
December 8, 2021 9:29 am

Since everything belongs to the state, when the state allows you to keep a portion of your paycheck, the state is subsidizing you.

Last edited 1 month ago by MarkW
Jim Gorman
Reply to  MarkW
December 8, 2021 11:14 am

Exactly what is the definition of communism?

michel
Reply to  Anthony Banton
December 8, 2021 8:19 am

None of that is subsidy. Its common in the Green lobby to claim that depletion allowances are subsidies. They are not. A lower rate of VAT on fuel purchases for home heating than on (for instance) wine or clothing is also not a subsidy. The rate of taxes on gasoline is also irrelevant to the question of subsidy.

Yes, the correct thing to do with wind and solar is to have the companies generating power through these technologies simply conform to GAAP. That is, depreciate their assets on a reasonable schedule.

This is how we treat the oil and gas industry.

What you’re calling a subsidy in the above passage is simply an accounting treatment of their earnings which is necessary, because to do otherwise would be false accounting. if you do not have a depletion allowance you are pretending that supplies of oil and gas which are being extracted are infinite. People go to jail for that sort of thing.

And the wind and solar sell their product on a free market to whoever will buy it, with all renewable purchase obligations abolished. If intermittency is a problem, fine, let them buy some batteries or gas generators. If connecting the wind farms to the grid is a problem, fine let them install transmission capacity.

The renewables lobby manages to argue at the same time that wind is now cheaper than conventional generation, and also that its super important that the power companies be compelled to buy it at a premium over wholesale. Its nonsense.

And when it taxes the poor and old for electricity, its wicked.

MarkW
Reply to  Anthony Banton
December 8, 2021 9:28 am

Typical, any tax rate less than 100% is a subsidy.

Peta of Newark
December 8, 2021 12:57 am

While Government lie lie lies about it

A lovely example of the work of the Office of National Statistics and Lies went past just yesterday
We were informed that Christmas Lunch this year will cost 3.4% more than last year’s lunch did.
(Doncha love the precision)

Any quick internet search will tell you that turkey will cost ‘tween 10 and 12% more this year than last and that potatoes (Maris Piper) now cost £300 per tonne compared to £200.
Creative or what? Folks get jailed for less.

Hideously cross-threading here but in a way Elon has a point – but it’s Over Statisticisation, not Overpopulation, that will end the world.
Lying basically.

Climate believer
December 8, 2021 2:15 am

“Meanwhile, at least 12 million European households were in arrears on their utility bills.”

In France, if your unpaid electricity bill falls between the 1st of November and the end of March, EDF will not cut you off. Outside of the winter months you have around 2 months from the unpaid date before they flip the switch. Same for gas.   

stewartpid
Reply to  Climate believer
December 8, 2021 9:22 am

And in France they let u eat all the cake u want!!

Giordano Milton
December 8, 2021 4:07 am

When the renewables fail to meet the needs of countries like Germany, and the backup is buying natural gas from Russia, what cost value is put in the column of arming Europe’s enemy?

Rich Davis
Reply to  Giordano Milton
December 8, 2021 4:39 am

Not an unintended consequence—or as they say at Microsoft, it’s a feature, not a bug.

DaveS
December 8, 2021 5:48 am

A long time ago, Friends of the Earth was a pretty sane organisation. Now, it appears to me, it is in the grip of swivel-eyed eco-loons and graduates who have been educated beyond their natural level of intelligence.

Carlo, Monte
December 8, 2021 7:31 am

Once again, it all goes back to the old bumper sticker from the 1970s, often seen in geology department parking lots:

BAN MINING
LET THE BASTARDS FREEZE
IN THE DARK

Alasdair Fairbairn
December 8, 2021 7:54 am

Cross national domestic energy prices are difficult to compare as it depends on how much of the cost is collected via the energy supplier and how much via hidden taxation and subsidies etc. Consumers and taxpayers are the same people when all is said and done.

I have just made a bet with myself by going onto a two year fixed price tariff which involved a more or less doubling of the direct debit required!! It will be interesting to see what happens but whatever; if do win out on this it will be a pyrrhic victory.😱

Steve Z
December 8, 2021 8:37 am

Looking at the last graph, with European gas consumption well above production, Vlad the Paler (Putin) must be smiling. It also helps him that our President’s son sits on the board of a Ukrainian gas company, so that the Big Guy approves a gas pipeline to Germany while cancelling oil pipelines in the USA.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Steve Z
December 8, 2021 9:54 am

I’m never one to defend Dementia Zhou but the Brandon Admin lifting sanctions on Nordstream 2 is a setback for Crackhead’s Ukrainian partners. That pipeline runs under the Baltic Sea bypassing Ukraine. The idea being to starve them of transit income and be able to cut off their energy supplies without losing the lucrative German and Western European markets.

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