Monday, October 10, 2011
Sunday Post Letter - Sea Turbine Nonsense
Al Gore, believer that smoking is a significant cause of global warming has taken time off from his move towards becoming a billionaire through government subsidised industries to tell us he is "inspired". Scotland has introduced the most expensive Climate change Act in the world. However those of us who doubt we have seen yet another of the "barbecue summers" we have been promised for a decade, must doubt that it is worth it.
However Scotland has some of the most expensive electricity in the world.
We have 2,500 pensioners dying annually of fuel poverty.
Our industry can't be competitive with countries where electricity is 1/4 the cost.
Alex Salmond has boasted that the sea turbine power he has made his personal totem is almost ready for us to start buying .
But the people actually building it said "As we move to 2020, we will get to a cost curve where we will be more competitive than wind."Since windmills are not "commercial" by any standard, being roughly 6 times more expensive than nuclear electricity (the cheapest option), moving to a "cost curve" that, optimistically, may someday match the most expensive is not good
On the other hand, so long as government is willing to pour hundreds of billions of £s of our money into subsidies, rather than allowing freedom in the single most important industry in the country, no doubt there will be money to be made.
I am largely impressed with the editing here and have put the bits published in bold. It has been shortened and split into pragraphs in a way that emphasises the points I was making. The Post does do as serious news as anybody else despite selling itself on its folksy image. Deleting the reference to Gore was sensible since it dates the letter, Gore having now gone home.
Only problem is that the last paragraph as published says the "Government pour millions" instead of hundreds of billions. The latter is correct if include not only current spending but the £200 billion they have said they want to spend in future. Millions is, even if we just count annual subsidies in Scotland alone, an understatement. We spend approxiamately £1 billion on combined subsidies and carbon levies here annually - a figure which just about matches the the 3p cut in income tax we are allowed to make.
Ref Guardian quotes on "more competitive than wind" http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/sep/27/wave-and-tidal-power-alex-salmond?newsfeed=true