… you will never get rid of the pillaging hordes.
This subsidy business is getting right out of hand. In the beginning, various players in the nuclear lobby decided the best way to promote their uneconomic monstrosities in the 21st Century, when state electricity monopolies are no longer on offer and the s-word is out of fashion, was to ask for a ‘floor price’ to be set on carbon credits under the EU emissions trading scheme. What particular floor price ? Earlier this year they were suggesting EUR 35 / tonne (vs current price of around EUR 15).
Back when the Coalition took power, seemingly in favour of the floor price as an unobtrusive way of ripping off electricity consumers (that’s, errr, everyone, a.k.a. a TAX), the nuclear lobby let it be understood that actually, they probably needed, ho-hum, let’s make it a round EUR 50.
Now, it seems, Huhne is being lobbied by the usual suspects for “between EUR 80 and EUR 90” – or an equivalent amount in a more complicated package they have in mind to disguise the bung they want even more thoroughly (because it will mean 25% on your bill).
Which is no surprise really, is it ? In May, we wrote:
"of course, €50 would only be the start. When, after a couple of years, the government notices that no new nukes have been started, and that the preposterous targets for new wind farms are not being met, they will solemnly be told by the subsidy-wallahs that the floor is not high enough."
Except we were out by … a couple of years: it only took the sharks a couple of months.
Why ? Because they smell blood, or rather, sweat – that of a Government scared that the lights will be going out and, they detect, showing every sign of being willing to throw someone else’s money at it.
And so does every other mother’s son in the industry. We know about the wind farm wallahs of old, but get this one from yesterday: Centrica wants someone to dream up a new subsidy to bribe them to build more gas storage facilities. Because, don’t you know, they’ve heard the government is really rather keen that we should have some more – and they sure as hell ain’t going to part with their own money when they hear everyone else just sticks their hands out. (“Sources described the economic climate as ‘extremely challenging’”.)
When do we suppose this is going to end ?