Conservatives will also let the lights go out

Tory energy spin

Arctic 3-day surveyArctic 3-day survey

Whilst the Conservatives are emoting about saving the NHS (ever heard that before?) there are several elephants in the room. One of these is energy policy. It is as if the doubts of a good half of the population as to man-made global warming had eluded them. It's as if all the revelations from Climategate had passed them by. It's as if they are totally unaware of the ongoing saga of the conflicts of interest of Dr Pachauri of the IPCC exposed by Dr. Richard North on EUReferendum

Yet again, as he has done for several years, the indefatigable Christopher Booker summarises the problems:

Gordon Brown’s equally timely relaunch of his “£100 billion green revolution”, designed, in compliance with EU targets, to meet a third of Britain’s electricity needs. This coincided with windless days when Ofgem was showing that our 2,300 existing turbines were providing barely 1/200th of our power. In fact, 80 per cent of the electricity we used last week came either from coal-fired power stations, six of which are before long to be closed under an EU anti-pollution directive, or from gas, of which we only have less than two weeks’ stored supply and 80 per cent of which we will soon have to import on a fast-rising world market.

In every way, Mr Brown’s boast was fantasy. There is no way we could hope to install two giant £4 million offshore turbines every day between now and 2020, let alone that they could meet more than a fraction of our electricity needs. But the cost of whatever does get built will be paid by all of us through our already soaring electricity bills – which a new study last week predicted will quadruple during this decade to an average of £5,000 a year. This would drive well over half the households in Britain into “fuel poverty”, defined as those forced to spend more than 10 per cent of their income on energy.

Finally, following Mr Brown’s earlier boast that his “green revolution” will create “400,000 green jobs”, there was the revelation that more than 90 per cent of the £2 billion cost of Britain’s largest offshore wind farm project to date, the Thames Array, will go to companies abroad, because Britain has virtually no manufacturing capacity.

Baiyan Obo mine, China.Baiyan Obo mine, China.
Conservative policy:

Expand offshore wind and marine power and provide government backing for a network of large-scale Marine Energy Parks.......only permit coal-fired power stations to be built with clean carbon capture and storage technology, restricting carbon emissions to the level achieved by a modern gas power plant. Nuclear power will be part of the energy mix if it is economically viable, but new nuclear power stations should not leave taxpayers with liabilities for their running, decommissioning or waste. Nuclear is not an alternative to developing and expanding renewable forms of energy......Britain is uniquely placed to be the world's first low carbon economy: we have the natural resources to generate wind and wave power, a skilled workforce trained in the energy industry, a high-tech manufacturing sector and a green financial centre in the City of London.

Greg Clark, the Tory Energy shadow has failed to reply to a request for a comment regarding the issues raised by Climategate and, reading the Tory energy policy, that is not surprising. They seem to be spinning wildly.

But then they say that ' we can only solve problems such as climate change if we belong to the EU'. If man-made climate change does not exist and hence we don't need to belong to the EU to solve it then we could use the money saved to help solve the debt crisis.

The suspension of wind farm development would also reduce the amount of rare-earth elements we need to import, see here. There is indeed a 'green' financial centre in the City of London ........... ready for the next financial bubble, this time formed of carbon futures?