Saturday, April 22, 2017

Shale Gas Could Heat British Homes By Early 2018

Theresa May Accused Of 'Stealing' Energy Price Cap Manifesto Pledge From Ed Miliband
Brought to you by Benny Peiser's Global Warming Policy Forum

Ed Miliband’s allies have accused Theresa May of “stealing” his flagship plan for an energy price cap for the Conservative’s manifesto as part of her bid to win seats in Labour’s northern heartlands. Greg Clark, the Business Secretary, yesterday gave the strongest indication yet that the Tories will put the policy at the heart of their manifesto as he vowed to take “muscular and strong action” to protect consumers. An ally of Mr Miliband said: “These policies were widely panned by the Conservatives as Marxist interventions. Now Theresa’s nicking them.” --Steven Swinford, The Daily Telegraph, 19 April 2017

Matt Lambert, director of government and public affairs at Cuadrilla, said homes in Lancashire could be heated by shale gas as early as the beginning of next year. He told editor Chris Maguire that there has been a great deal of “scaremongering” about the potential damage fracking does to the environment and said the opportunity to explore huge natural reserves of shale gas in the county is “too good to miss”. With the prospect of tens of thousands of jobs being created in the semi-rural county, Lambert believes that more people will look favourably on the industry when it becomes operational. “We need to get that started here and make Lancashire a hub for the industry in Europe.” --Business Cloud, 20 April 2017

British unconventional exploration company Cuadrilla plans to start the drilling stage of its shale gas exploratory plans in northwest England within the next “couple of months,” company CEO Francis Egan said this week. --Kallanish Energy News, 14 April 2017
The UK is set to spend its first full day without generating electricity from coal on Friday, the National Grid says. It said it had run coal-free before, but the longest continuous period was 19 hours, first achieved last May. It comes as less-polluting natural gas and renewables play a bigger role in supply - although the demand for power is also lower on Fridays. The grid said it would only know for sure if it had achieved the feat by "22:51 on Friday". --BBC News, 21 April 2017

Energy bills could soar by up to 54 per cent in hundreds of thousands of households when many popular fixed deals expire at the end of the month. Consumers are being warned their bills could rise by up to £414 if their supplier automatically puts them on a more expensive new tariff. It comes as many big energy firms have already announced further price increases this year. --Ben Wilkinson, Daily Mail, 21 April 2017

Theresa May needs an energy policy adviser. I hasten to add that this is not a job application – but someone is needed to pull together the necessary reforms and to help the UK prime minister avoid self-destructive mistakes such as an attempt to take charge of fixing energy prices. The predominant view in Whitehall – from the Treasury to the business department which is now responsible for energy – is that current policies are mistaken and require radical reform. Those policies take no account of the structural fall in energy prices; the failure of new nuclear to live up to its promise; the changing pattern of demand; and, most important of all, the transformation in the global energy market being brought about by a range of new technologies. Each of those factors requires some adjustment in policy but taken together they justify a complete reset. Reform, however, is very difficult. There are numerous vested interests and an army of lobbyists. --Nick Butler, Financial Times, 17 April 2017

By mistakenly using inappropriate data from the OECD, The Energy and Climate Information Unit (ECIU) misled The Times into claiming that per capita GDP in the UK grew by 130% in the period 1992 to 2014, when the correct figure, from the UK’s Office of National Statistics is 44%. This error led both the ECIU and The Times into thinking that the UK had cracked the ‘clean’ growth conundrum by decoupling emissions and economic growth. The truth is more complicated and much less clear. --John Constable, GWPF Energy, 18 April 2017

Tomorrow’s March for Science will draw many thousands in support of evidence-based policy making and against the politicization of science. A concrete step toward those worthy goals would be to convene a “Red Team/Blue Team” process for climate science, one of the most important and contentious issues of our age. Given the importance of climate projections to policy, it is remarkable that they have not been subject to a Red Team exercise. Here’s how it might work: The focus would be a published scientific report meant to inform policy such as the U.N.’s Summary for Policymakers or the U.S. Government’s National Climate Assessment. A Red Team of scientists would write a critique of that document and a Blue Team would rebut that critique. Further exchanges of documents would ensue to the point of diminishing returns. A commission would coordinate and moderate the process and then hold hearings to highlight points of agreement and disagreement, as well as steps that might resolve the latter. The process would unfold in full public view: the initial report, the exchanged documents and the hearings. A Red/Blue exercise would have many benefits. --Steven Koonin, The Wall Street Journal, 21 April 2017

A group of prominent US climate experts have told a Congressional committee hearing that climate science is dysfunctional, beset by bias and groupthink, and is using a profoundly unscientific approach. Speaking before the U.S. House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, Professor John Christy told representatives that “consensus science”, as practiced by much of mainstream climatology, was “not science” at all, while Professor Judith Curry explained that “self-deception” had got the better of far too many climatologists. Both concluded that there had been a wholesale failure to use the scientific method in climatology, something that could only be put right by the introduction of official “red teams” – groups of eminent scientists, who would be asked to challenge and provide dissenting opinions on official climate assessments. --Global Warming Policy Foundation

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