Thursday 19 September 2013

Big Lies, Small Mercies

Go, Turbo
In the thick-and-fast documents on its soi-dissant 'Electricity Market Reforms' the government has come up with a mantra to be repeated at every opportunity:
EMR will deliver the greener energy and reliable supplies that the country needs, at the lowest possible cost
It's a shameless, blatant lie, of course - but hey, if repeated often enough ...  The word 'needs' is of course mendacious, but for that they can at least argue they have a mandate.  The real outrage is the pretence of delivering at 'lowest possible cost', and incontrovertible proof is readily to hand in the shape of the CfD 'strike prices' (= guaranteed electricity prices) announced over the summer for the various technologies on offer.  Some examples:
  • Landfill gas:          65 (£/MWh) 
  • Energy from waste: 90
  • Hydro:                  95
  • Onshore wind:      100
  • Large scale solar: 120
  • Offshore wind:      155
  • Tidal and wave:    305 (sic)
For reference, wholesale prices are currently in the range £50-60.  Manifestly, no-one can be offering £155, still less £305, and still claim to be delivering at lowest possible cost.  The real motive is given elsewhere in government documents, for example here (page 7, my emphasis)
[The] CfDs have been designed to provide efficient long-term support for all forms of low carbon electricity generation
Yes folks, the aim is for all technologies, however fatuous, to be given a piece of the action.  In that context I suppose we we must take a crumb of comfort from the Severn Barrage - epic fatuousness on large concrete stilts, being promoted by Peter Hain and 'Lord Deben' - yet again being given short shrift.  Why won't it just go away ?

For the record, I offer to generate on my exercise bike for a mere £295 per MWh.  Turbo my hamster in his little wheel is only slightly more costly at £300.  And we can start tomorrow - which is more than any of these other crazy schemes can say.



Elby the Beserk said...

"Why won't it just go away ?"

Because too many people are making too much money from it?

Anonymous said...

Landfill gas so cheap? We need more landfill to keep up with demand at that price.

But of course LG, aka anaerobic digestion, is favoured by Greg Barker's sponsors - who just happen to have a lot of anaerobic digestion. And he gave them a £6mn grant for it too.

Very far sighted of him.

Nick Drew said...

actually, anon, anaerobic digestion isn't the same as LG (it's produced in big stainless steel tanks) ... and gets £145 !: the ghastly Barker has done even better for his boys than you thought

sewage gas gets £85

there are loads of different types of crap in this game

Elby the Beserk said...

A game of craps, then? :-)

Anonymous said...

I of course believe that if the UK really wants zero-CO2 energy, the only way is nukes. But, since I'm an AGW sceptic, if I was running things I'd just buy the cheapest, whether coal, gas, oil, or indeed nukes.