Library filed under Energy Policy from UK
MPs have grown alarmed by a trend for onshore wind farm applications to be approved on appeal because of Mr Huhne's target, even when inspectors concede they will be a blight.
This powerful piece written by Maurice Newman, former chairman of Deutsche Bank, the Australian Securities Exchange and, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is a must read by anyone involved in the wind energy debate.
The engineering consultancy Mott MacDonald was commissioned by Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) in the UK to update the electricity generation costs in 2009. In its report released June 2010, the firm calculated the “levelised generation costs” for several technologies including wind power. In this report, economist Ruth Lea, examines these Government-commissioned estimates of costs to calculate the most cost-effective technologies.
"Following the recent undemocratic decision of the planning inspector to overturn the council planning committee's resolution and approve the application to build two wind farms at Watford and Kelmarsh, in line with Government policy, was a step too far.
Official figures disclosed that 17 operators were paid almost £7 million for shutting down their farms on almost 40 occasions between January and mid-September. Continuing to make payments at that rate would lead to householders paying out £9.9 million in 2011 for operators to disconnect their turbines from the National Grid.
"Offshore wind is a higher cost energy because we are where we are in the learning curve," said Anders Søe-Jensen, president of the offshore division at Vestas. "We are at risk but we all have to commit to bringing down costs otherwise we're going to kill our industry."
Energy produced at a horrendous cost that drains the budgets of households and depresses spending elsewhere is neither a rational energy gain nor a "stimulus boost". It is edifice economics, founded on sleight of hand taxation and powered by a gale of hope. We are going to need more than this to have a hope of keeping the lights on.
In eastern Germany, turbines in strong wind can produce more than all German coal and gas plants put together, while the need to switch off turbines in high winds causes a drop-off in electricity of 12GW - equal to two nuclear power plants. Outages are likely if there is too little demand or storage capacity to accommodate the jumps in supply.
The Duke of Edinburgh has made a fierce attack on wind farms, describing them as "absolutely useless". The Duke's views are politically charged, as they put him at odds with the Government's policy
LONDON -- While natural gas could play a significant role in greening the British economy, renewables will remain part of the energy mix, the energy secretary said.
Government plans to cut pollution by a third by 2020 rely heavily on wind power and will cost £108billion to implement, an accountancy firm has calculated. But shifting the emphasis away from turbines and towards nuclear and gas-fired power stations would slash the bill by £34billion, according to KPMG.
"The Scottish government needs to lay out a very clear, engineering-based plan on how they're going to have an energy mix which is secure and affordable for Scotland," he said. "At the moment, there is no clear vision for the engineering of this infrastructure."
In the absence of a credible publicly presented plan to deliver Scotland's renewable energy at the scale required, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers considers here what these targets mean from an engineering viewpoint.
Chris Huhne, the Energy Secretary, is planning to deploy an extraordinary range of insults to describe people who find fault with wind, solar, tidal and wave energy. The minister's hardline support for renewable energy is understood to have antagonised senior Conservatives, including Chancellor George Osborne.
History — of the U.S., Europe, the U.K. and its former dominions — repeatedly shows that environmental protection is a luxury good. ...This all splatters to a halt when economies go south. And the crash can be especially jarring if greenness is one of the causes. Thanks in no small part to the debacle in Europe, in a very few recent weeks, we have witnessed the great green crack-up.
The Department for Energy and Climate Change yesterday proposed doubling the tradable ROCs, or Renewables Obligation Certificates, given to enhanced biomass co-firing plants and more than doubling rewards for wave and tidal-power projects. The government said it will cut support for wind farms as costs fall.
Opposition to onshore wind farms is hardening and becoming more effective. In 2005, only 29 per cent of onshore projects were refused planning permission, but this rose to 33 per cent in 2009 and 48 per cent last year.
Large institutional traders have been shutting down their carbon desks, as the £80bn emissions market is still full of hazards six months after an outbreak of fraud. ...The City of London Corporation gave evidence to the Energy Select Committee that some traders are even leaving the market because they are so worried about the potential for handling stolen allowances.
Taxpayers face higher electricity bills and an economy that is damaged because its costs have been artificially inflated by the decision to use wind as a principal source of power. It is a ludicrous situation. ...the commitment to wind power is based on dogma, not evidence. But the truth is that you can't meet a country's energy needs from dogma - as ministers will discover soon enough.
A witness said the crowd of 200 people "erupted in laughter" when Salmond defended the plans by saying wind power was "free". The reaction in Stranraer, Wigtownshire, was a blow to the First Minister, who has vowed to make Scotland a leader in green energy.