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Archive for the ‘Angles’ Category

Paul Golby: He’s a Hero!

In Angles, EON website + PR statements on January 29, 2009 at 10:57 pm

EON  plans to build the first new coal plant in over 30 years in the uk. Some of us see that as a negative thing and see EON’s boss as a very naughty boy. He, however, sees himself as the saviour of the UK. Fighting it out to make sure that the UK gets its fair share of dirty coal. This arrogance works quite well with the security of supply angle that they are pushing; where security basically means price. If the govornment don’t help Paul, he might just give up the fight, and not build new generating capacity. Then the UK will really have an energy gap; how very much like the mafia EON is. “You wouldnt want that energy grid to get broken, would you?”

“I am out there batting for the UK to get its share of the international company’s investment portfolio and it becomes that much more difficult if I cannot show that the returns will justify that investment.”

Malcom Wicks on CCS

In Angles on January 29, 2009 at 10:45 pm

The Environmental Audit Committee has made it quite clear that the govornment has moved with a complete lack of urgency on carbon capture and storage…that isn’t because like some of us they think it’s not going to ammount to anything, nope, its because they have there priorities badly mixed up. They are complacent and distressingly incompetent. And look at the rhetoric from Malcom Wicks:

Mr Wicks defended the use of coal in power stations as necessary. “Coal is and will continue to be, in our judgment, a vital part of the energy mix. Diversity is vital. If we don’t have coal, it will bring forth an extra dash for gas. We need to think of the national security implications for that.”

Describing CCS as vital and “dear to my heart”, he said: “We are leading the world on CCS technology.”

Malcom wicks stod down from his place at BERR but is now gordon browns international energy envoy, and thats a bit more responsibility than i`d like him to have.

Renewables cant do the job.

In Angles on January 26, 2009 at 3:26 pm

Continuning the energy security vs climate change theme is Ed Miliband. Despite the fact that renewable energies are by and large domestic, it seems that the UK DECC just cant get its head arund the idea that renewables can be a quick and cost effective solution to climate change. They dont even seem that keen in engaging in projects to make large scale renewables a reality.

Energy Gap Angle

In Angles on January 9, 2009 at 3:13 pm

Some of the biggest news at the moment in relation to the UK’s energy sector is focused on the idea of an energy gap.  This perspective again hit the headlines due to a study which found that many of the UK’s coal plants are going to close sooner than expected. These plants oppted out of the EU’s large combustion directive i.e they didnt want the expense of better pollution control. They where given a certain number of opporational hours before closing down. As they where ‘peaking’ plants at the time, this would have lasted them quite a few years but now that gas is more expensive and they are acting as baseload things are quite differnt.

The key question of course is how we meet this gap; and developing renewables and waste heat as a credible alternative has to be a priority for climate campaigners.

Bellow is a summary from the PA

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Clean Coal: A Rhetorical Solution to Climate Change

In Angles on December 27, 2008 at 10:14 pm

The idea of clean coal was cooked up as a response to climate change. However, in reality there is very little discussion of capturing carbon in discussions of clean coal.

The idea that coal isn’t old and polluting  is an interesting rouse , but fortunately a very unconvincing idea and a lot of people have taken the whole concept appart quite comprehensively.

Be very scared…of the ‘energy gap’.

In Angles on December 21, 2008 at 7:11 pm

One variant on the ‘renewables cost to much’ argument is the ‘all energy is going to cost to much argument‘ this basically states that we are heading for a supply crunch and that rather than resisting the seemingly inextricable rise of energy consumption we should grab onto 1.2GW of power, however polluting it is.

“You have old nuclear plants, old coal, expensive gas, a need to invest in renewables to reach unrealistic targets, and a slow [planning] process. Doesn’t that sound like a problem to you?” he said. “The situation in the energy sector in the UK is more difficult than a number of other countries in Europe, without people fully realising it.”

There is some truth in the idea of an energy gap, but under pressure we need politicians to make the smart choice not the fearful one. The article that quote was taken from is called “you British have so little power” and it is from the mouth of a cigar smoking German. Could we get any more obvious at our illusions to British impotence, any more brazen in our attempts to encourage huge masculine mega-projects like Kingsnorth?

Particularly with the credit crisis making power difficult to finance, i think this argument has some traction. The case for urgent action is made, the thing is we need renewables urgently!

EON: Concerned for the consumer?

In Angles on December 21, 2008 at 6:55 pm

Despite placing themselves as guardians of the consumer eon state that they wont pass on gas price cuts.

EON‘s UK arm made £650 Million in the first 9 months of the year, but according to CEO Paul Golby that isn’t enough.

“Profits are not high enough to match the cost of capital needed for investment, for example in new plants. I accept that the group profit figures we report look large, but we need capital to invest.”

More on the energy industry and it’s love of protecting consumers:

This clearly doesnt prove that renewables are cheap but it does show that energy companies do anything for money. Other articles will back up there fear of innovation and there incentives for keeping energy demand high when energy saving would be cheap for consumers.

Intermitancy is real but thinking is backwards.

In Angles on December 21, 2008 at 6:30 pm

One blog arguing for clean coal explains perfectly why renewables couldn’t possibly contribute significantly to our energy supply. It is all down to the grid code and the technical requirements of today’s national grid.  Eon have used this logic to a degree when presenting to parliament.

Now, when these surges (or other events happen) the national grid calls for more energy – yes, partly from stored water reservoirs, but in the first instance from fossil.

Coal power stations (along with gas) have to be able to increase their demand by 10% within 10s and hold it for half an hour:

…and that’s the rub – as more renewables come onto the grid this instability is going to increase. Renewables and nuclear can’t load balance in this way – they just run – it’s not possible to get the wind to blow a bit faster just because a football match is on.

The engineer who wrote this is certainly correct but cant we look at the system faults rather than the problems these faults cause?

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