Tuesday 9 October 2012
Shale Gas - yeah!
For with Nukes closing, Coal too expensive under emissions schemes and renewable both fantastically expensive and unreliable, a worrisome situation was emerging.
On the other hand, presented to us was a solution. Shale Gas exists in large quantities and although more expensive to produce than normal gas, with some more environmental challenges too, it is much cleaner than coal and plugs straight into a redundant grid with many Gas power stations already in mothball.
So by announcing yesterday tax breaks yesterday we are at last moving forward with a solution to our self-created energy problem. Of course it is not just an energy shortage which is the issue. In the long-term, relying on expensive oil and nuclear will hammer our manufacturing competitiveness as input price inflation eats away at the competitiveness of products. Countries reliant on oil are going to find themselves mashed by the low price of US goods given their lower energy intensity production costs. So goodbye Japan and Germany in the medium-term - closing your nukes and having no alternatives ready and Goodbye France for deciding not to exploit shale.
At last, signs of a decent policy ahead, let's hope Ed Davey and the Liberal Democrats see sense and realise that the lights gong out is not something we want to contemplate and that a dash for gas is the most environmentally friendly option open to us.