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UK Government cuts green subsidies, investment falls, calls for “more subsidies” rise

That didn’t take long. The recent UK election means the conservative government has the power to get rid of some subsidies for “low carbon”, “green” electricity, and make it easier for oil and gas. Renewable energy companies are feeling the pain, and complaining bitterly. Of course, if they were competitive, they wouldn’t need the subsidies and the stock market would throw money at them. Such is the fear, that there is an emergency summit happening within the green energy sector. “Scottish Renewables has warned the move could put up to £3bn of investment in Scotland at risk.” So $3 billion dollars was placed on a bet that the subsidies would continue, that the voters would not get sick of paying too much, and their bets have failed. I have no sympathy. Anyone playing the subsidy market should have done their homework. With the science shot with holes, the subsidies were always built on vapor. GWPF has all the stories.

The green tax target is going

Tim Ross, The Telegraph: Green energy subsidies spiral out of control

George Osborne to abolish coalition’s green tax target as customers face paying £1.5billion more through their bills to subsidise wind farms, solar panels and biomass plants.

The cost of subsidising new wind farms is spiralling out of control, government sources have privately warned. Officials admitted that so-called “green” energy schemes will require a staggering £9 billion a year in subsidies – paid for by customers – by 2020. This is £1.5 billion more than the maximum limit the coalition had originally planned. The mounting costs will mean every household in the country is forced to pay an estimated £170 a year by the end of the decade to support the renewable electricity schemes that were promoted by the coalition. Tory ministers are said to be “angry” at the scale of the over-running costs. They are blaming the Liberal Democrats who ran the Department for Energy and Climate Change for the past five years for the spectacular failure to control renewable energy programmes. -

How different is UK electricity to the Soviet system?

The UK  government apparently indirectly decides the price of electricity, and they decided that companies “could” charge consumers for their costs of developing green electricity. If electricity were a free market, companies could choose to sell and develop cheap electricity and consumers could choose to buy cheap electricity and not subsidize research they thought was pointless. I’d like to buy the 4c/ kWh coal type of electricity (that’s wholesale, but where is the retail version?). The Lib Dems put in contracts that can’t be changed — pay the patrons and the big-government cheer squad, but don’t let the public choose.

How many UK would families would be happy if a man turned up at their door once a year demanding a cheque for £68 (soon to be £141), to develop expensive electricity generators in the hope of making the weather nicer for their great grandchildren? (And that’s only a part of the green bill.) Taxpayers would revolt.

Under the coalition, ministers decided that investment in new renewable energy developments, such as wind turbines, solar panels and biomass schemes, would be paid for by energy companies, rather than through taxation. Energy firms were allowed to recover the cost of these subsidies from their customers by adding it to household bills.

In order to limit the impact of the green schemes on customers, ministers set a strict cap on the total amount that could be spent in these consumer-funded subsidies for renewable energy. By 2020, the maximum amount to be spent through these subsidies was set at £7.6 billion a year. But new projections from DECC show this cap will be exceeded by a massive 20 per cent, or another £1.5 billion. Official figures showed that environmental levies added £68 to the average household bill last year. By 2020 this had been expected to rise to £141. But the latest DECC figures suggest the true figure will be closer to £170 as costs continue to mount.

Government sources say there is little that Mr Osborne can do because the subsidies have already been agreed under long-term contracts signed by DECC while Liberal Democrat ministers were in charge. – The Telegraph (see link above)

The British Government is also set to scrap the climate change levy exemption and stop money flowing from UK taxpayers to foreign renewable electricity generators. The levy was started in 2001 to try to improve energy efficiency, and the amount was estimated to be GBP 3.90 billion. I think making renewables pay on a level playing field is good, but why have a levy to change the climate at all?

Thanks to the GWPF. See also Renewable Energy Trust Funds Tumble On Osborne Cuts.

Green investment funds in the US are falling as well and asking for more subsidies

The tax credits for wind power have run out, and by 2016 installations of new wind towers will fall by 73%. The tax credit for solar power is coming down and by 2017 that will mean a 46% fall.  Financial Times

The US wind and solar power industries face a fall in investment in 2017 after tax credits expire, their trade body has warned as it appeals to politicians for more financial support.

The tax credit for wind power expired at the end of 2014 but the impact has been delayed because projects that had started construction by the cut-off date remained eligible. Installations of new wind capacity are expected to drop 73 per cent, from 8.4 gigawatts in 2016 to 2.3GW the following year. With a reduction in the credit for solar power scheduled for the end of 2016, new solar photovoltaic installations are expected to drop 46 per cent from 10.8GW in 2016 to 5.8GW in 2017.

US natural gas prices have dropped from more than $12 per million British thermal units in 2008 to less than $2.80 today, and the futures market puts the price at less than $4.50 per mBTU as far out as 2025.

- h/t GWPF

UPDATE: In Comments – why the real cost is so much more

Kevin Marshall (Manicbeancounter)

The extra £68 a year that is added to the electricity bills vastly understates the problem. There are a number of reasons.
- Subsidies for renewables do not include the extra cost of extending the grid. Wind turbines are in remote places, such as the North of Scotland. Building the power lines to the centers of population is hugely expensive. Estimates have put this extra investment at £100bn over about 20 years, compared with about £20-£25bn annual retail sales of electricity.
- A free market would contract for electricity to be supplied when demanded. Wind power would thus get a lower rate than nuclear and fossil fuels, as we cannot predict when the wind will blow. The market is rigged the other way. At periods of low demand, wind turbine operators are sometime paid to switch the things off. More importantly, for the electricity from wind is given priority, so conventional power stations cannot predict load days in advance. Further, they end up running at lower than average capacity, further increasing costs.
- Any new nuclear or fossil fuel power stations are severely hindered by protests and planning constraints. We even had father of global warming James Hansen arrested for protesting at the site of a new coal-fired power station a few years ago. So existing energy suppliers are increasingly faced with less competition.
As an example, I read last year that in Wisconsin the power company can buy in electricity at $30 (£20) per megawatt. In the UK the wholesale market price is £40-£50 per megawatt and offshore wind turbines get around £120-£140 per megawatt.

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142 comments to UK Government cuts green subsidies, investment falls, calls for “more subsidies” rise

  • #
    Peter Miller

    This is the UK’s first tentative step towards energy sanity. The next would be to ban the daily importation of tens of thousands of tonnes of wood chips from North America to fuel UK power stations, a practice which makes no economic or environmental sense.

    The problem remains that perfectly viable, coal fired, power stations continue to be closed and no one is prepared to build new power stations unless guaranteed an electricity price a lot higher than today’s wholesale prices.

    The previous ecoloons running the UK’s energy ministry dreamed up an insane scheme whereby so called green energy had to be purchased by the national grid first at fixed prices, while everyone else basically sold power on an hour by hour auction basis.

    The result is the lights in the UK are almost guaranteed to go out during the next cold winter. Sadly, as I have said several times before, the deaths of tens of thousands from hypothermia in a First World country may unfortunately be needed to steer the world away from ecolunacy.

    It is difficult to see how countries like the UK and Germany are going to survive through the winters of the next decade, unless current energy policies are dramatically changed.

    Not long ago, I read somewhere the Indian government had found a realistic way of tackling the green energy problems of high cost and huge imbalances in their national grid system. This entailed requiring green energy companies to guarantee their output, with an accuracy of 10%, on an hourly basis, 24 hours into the future, or face large fines.

    530

    • #
      Geoff Williams

      I agree with you Peter.
      Lets hope that some of you ideas and thinking can get through to the British public and their government of the day!
      They really need to wake up the situation act now.
      Geoffrey Williams
      Sydney

      140

      • #
        Barry

        Er, not so fast. Note that they are not reducing emissions targets, and the reason is that they cannot, because Britain’s sovereignty has been signed over to the socialist EU bureaucracy. They still have a legal obligation to meet emissions targets. So, in typical conservative socialist government style, they are just trying to save a few dollars from the budget bottom line, for their own political gain, but are not actually doing anything to make Britain a better place. The long-suffering British public will still be penalised, in one way or another, so that their government can meet the emissions targets it allowed the EU to impose on the British people.

        140

    • #
      ianl8888


      … the Indian government had found a realistic way of tackling the green energy problems of high cost and huge imbalances in their national grid system. This entailed requiring green energy companies to guarantee their output, with an accuracy of 10%, on an hourly basis, 24 hours into the future, or face large fines

      Yes, indeed

      I’m watching the results of this quite carefully :)

      270

      • #

        Good one Ian but could you supply the source so I can refer to it in presentations and discussions. Thanks

        60

      • #
        gai

        It was a great idea but the profiteers are protesting.

        India Regulator Halts Fines on Wind Farm for Bad Forecasts

        March 7, 2014
        …an Indian rule requiring wind farms to predict output or face fines has been temporarily suspended as the regulator reconsiders the best way to ensure stability of the grid, which suffered the world’s biggest outage in 2012.

        “The mechanism has been put on hold,” said Sunil Jain, chief executive officer at Hero Future Energies Pvt. and president of the Wind Independent Power Producers Association.

        The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission last year said it would penalize wind farms that failed to predict their day-ahead generation within a 30 percent band. Developers including Tata Power (TPWR) Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s ReNew Wind Power Pvt. protested the directive, saying it was impossible to comply with and that fines would wipe out profits in an industry that has drawn about $10 billion of investment since 2011.

        “Not a single project has been able to produce data within the margins,” Jain said in an interview in New Delhi this week. “It defeats the purpose. It’s too inaccurate.”….

        Hey, dude the purpose is to provide a stable energy supply for a country, NOT PROFITS FOR A FEW.

        40

        • #

          Ring, ring.

          Hello, Bayswater power.

          Yeah! Gidday mate. I’m from the Australian regulator. Can we have your prediction for tomorrow.

          Yeah sure. 660MW multiplied by four units. That’s 2640MW. For all 24 hours!

          Are you sure of that? Sounds pretty bold to me.

          Just tellin’ it like it is.

          OK. Thanks. I’ll call again same time tomorrow.

          No need,. You’ll get the same answer.

          Tony.

          40

  • #
    Geoff Williams

    We have been through all this of this before.
    Neither side of British politics has the foresight or the gumption to take on the global warming alarmists.
    The British public is not only naïve but totally uninformed about the real issues concerning global warming.
    They have had global warming drilled into their brains for years through their schooling and through the media.
    I know! I was born and lived there and visit there often.
    They / It won’t change – too many groups with biased self interests.
    Let them get on with it and pay the price. One day they may wake up to themselves.
    Sorry to be so negative – I hope that I’m wrong.
    Geoffrey Williams.
    Sydney

    310

    • #
      ScotsmaninUtah

      Geoff

      I agree and it is very disheartening to see the lack of empathy or consideration when at a “minimum”, every year 25,000 people die of the cold in Britain.

      The British like to think they are informed, but the reality is different.

      20

  • #

    Never in the history of the world, has such an amount of money been wasted, without any trace of financial oversight or accountability.

    https://thepointman.wordpress.com/2012/04/13/the-sun-is-setting-on-solar-power-the-moneys-gone-and-nobodys-asking-any-questions/

    There’s a lot more cutting to do.

    Pointman

    380

    • #

      The conundrum is that the Greens inherently hate big corporations, bankers, etc, yet they support these very entities when it comes this sort of thing. The Greens must know that these options are not going to solve anything and are putting huge dollars into the pockets of the entities that they don’t like. So what’s the ulterior motive in supporting them to such an extent?

      100

      • #
        Griffo

        They want to “change” the system i.e. bring the system down,they are really anarchists.

        50

    • #
      Craig

      Pointmam, I have an MBA and I’m completely embarrassed by the lack of business principles and application these CEO’s and executives, senior and junior, have demonstrated in project costing and forecasting.

      Net present value, Internal rate of return, Pay back period…….meh, who cares!

      20

  • #
    Frank

    If the billions that the fossil fuel industries receive in subsidies globally were diverted to renewables there’d no problem making the transition.

    368

    • #

      Get real Frank. Most of the “subsidies” as you call them are not subsidies at all. It’s an abuse of English. If the companies that earn money (by providing a service everyone wants) get to keep their earnings — because the government didn’t tax them even higher — that’s your “subsidy”.

      701

      • #
        Andrew McRae

        Just to provide some entirely gratuitous academic reference for Jo’s short and sharp answer, we may turn to Rothbard’s “POWER & MARKET”, Chapter 5, p208:

        1. Government Subsidies: Transfer Payments
        There are two and only two ways of acquiring wealth: the economic means (voluntary production and exchange) and the political means (confiscation by coercion). On the free market only the economic means can be used, and consequently every-one earns only what other individuals in society are willing to pay for his services.

        Taxation is coercion and is therefore political. As the rebate on the fuel reimburses and therefore mostly cancels the effect of the original fuel tax, the rebate represents a restoration of the fuel cost to its normal economic market price. The fuel is therefore obtained and priced economically rather than politically, so by definition it cannot have been subsidised.

        My understanding of the subsidicity of fuel tax rebates in previous years was skewed by the statist propaganda of interpreting any relative advantage conferred by government to a business activity as a subsidy. Having now absorbed more wisdom from the Austrian school of economics I have now seen the light and my skewed interpretation has been corrected.

        51

    • #
      Keith L

      Here is a question for you, Frank.
      Where do subsidies for fossil fuels come from?
      The only way to subsidize something is to lower its price and make up the difference by increasing the price of something else. So the only way to subsidize fossil fuel is by loading up the price of a cheaper form of energy. I would love to know what fuel source is cheaper than fossil.

      391

    • #

      Oh dear Frank,

      If the billions that the fossil fuel industries receive in subsidies globally were diverted to renewables there’d no problem making the transition.

      A transition from something which does work to something which doesn’t work.

      That seems like value for money! (/sarc)

      Tony.

      461

      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        … from something which does work to something which doesn’t work.

        That sounds like a family with teenage children, if you are talking about money.

        131

    • #
      Just-A-Guy

      Frank,

      The way that fossil fuel subsidies are calculated is described in:

      How Large Are Global Energy Subsidies.

      Things like: (p.15)

      Post-tax consumer subsidies additionally require estimates of undercharging for global
      warming, local air pollution, and (if applicable) vehicle externalities for each energy products
      and estimates for general consumption taxes.

      In other words, they estimate the amount of damage that would be caused by global warming, put a price on it, and then count that dollar amount as a subsidy! :o

      Leave it to bankers to find a way to ‘cook’ the books!

      And you alarmists drink the Kool-Aid willingly, like good little boys and girls.

      Anyone who wants to have a good laugh, while having their eyes opened, should peruse this ‘gem’.

      Abe

      381

      • #
        aussieguy

        Notice the irony in all this?

        (1) Politicised-science and -meteorological organisations fiddle with numbers in order to support a political agenda. They presume the public is none the wiser.

        (2) Bankers fiddle with numbers in order to portray they are supporting the agenda. The Warmists are none the wiser!

        …Bankers aren’t going to sacrifice themselves to a movement they know is an economic sham in the long run. They’re bean counters! They live and breathe numbers! Nothing about Global Warming adds up! They know, and they don’t have much confidence in “renewable energy investment” or the so-called “green jobs” that eco-folks claim that will be created.


        Side note:

        You’ll often find engineering graduates end up working in banks. Its most notable in Australia and UK…This is because there is serious money to be made; as banks need that engineering thinking required to develop economic computer models and that strong mathematical competence not found in most economics graduates. Its up to a point where in the UK, the Dyson company (yeah, the one that makes premium-engineered vacuum cleaners), has to start a school to grow the pool of future engineers! He has trouble recruiting and retaining engineering graduates as they all flee to riches in the London financial districts!

        For Warmists to think banks are actually backing them is really naive. Banks have their own agenda. And its certainly not in the direction of economically self-sacrificing one’s self in order to make themselves feel better! They go by numbers. NOT on emotions.

        121

    • #
      Manfred

      Frank you’re beautiful. Through the pink haze of that first politically correct joint of the evening, your delusional sense is perfect.

      331

    • #
      bobl

      The basic premise of that argument is ridiculous anyway, exactly what sort of “Renewables” are you going to replace all that coal generation with? With 15-30 square km per GW, exactly how much land are you going to need to cover in bird fryers and slicer dicers to achieve your aim? If you threw 1000 times those imagined subsidies at renewables then you’d get maybe 5% of what’s needed. And of course since the lifecycle CO2 budget for wind and solar is near to unity, it really wouldn’t matter how much you threw at it you would still see no CO2 benefit to speak of, to maintain that scale of renewables one would have to double world electricity production just to keep up with power plant maintenance. Of course then you need twice as many solar panels, and so the joke goes on. Tail, meet dog!

      271

    • #
      Peter Miller

      Frank

      Words fail me.

      That comment is taking pig ignorance to a new height.

      Renewables are:

      1. Very expensive to build and moderately expensive to run.

      2. Erratic producers of intermittent energy.

      3. Placing enormous strains on national grids, thus creating great inefficiencies and waste.

      4. Ugly and noisy (not solar obviously for the latter).

      5. Deleterious to the environment in the number of bats and bird, especially raptors, they kill – once again obviously only the non-bird barbecuing types of solar.

      6. Suffer from steadily declining efficiency over time and also can require expensive maintenance as they age.

      7. The principal creators – and growing – of energy poverty in the developed world.

      8. Require expensive, back up, fossil fuelled, power stations for the times when they inevitably are not operating due to clouds, darkness, high pressure systems or too much wind.

      9. The principal cause why so few real power stations are being built in the western world, bringing with it the prospect of long term rolling blackouts during the coldest winter months.

      For isolated places with lots of wind or sun, there is a good argument for renewable energy if there is adequate battery storage. For all other places, it makes no sense whatsoever, which is presumably why the loony left loves it so much.

      Thank you ecoloons everywhere for the lunacy of renewables.

      341

    • #
      Alfred

      I thought Frank was kiddin.

      80

    • #
      jim2

      Yeah Frank. All businesses get tax breaks when their resource is depleted, they also get depreciation allowances. You are so full of it Frank. I can smell it all the way here in the USA.

      131

    • #
      Manfred

      Frank, through your pink haze, you may have forgotten that more than 50% of what is paid at the gas station forecourt for fuel is an array of clip on taxes and levies (because we can) – in NZ. In the UK, that figure is closer to 70%.

      Once again, the government is being subsidised by the long suffering populous, simply because it’s easy and it can.

      Deny that the Greens want access the same endless stream of largesse.

      151

      • #
        gnome

        It’s even better than that for the Green argument. Now that the excise on transport fuel is being indexed, every time the tax goes up, the “subsidy” goes up. The government gets more money, but the “subsidy” for non-transport fuel is the bit they’ll be quoting at you.

        If you ask the Green Party, it’s a scandal that the crazy-generous government lets anyone keep anything at all. A Green Party government wouldn’t.

        60

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Frank,

      You are going the wrong way. Reality is over here, mate.

      131

    • #
      TdeF

      A tax break is not a subsidy.

      In Australia a Federal fuel tax was introduced specifically to fund National road building. Councils build local roads. The mining companies argued reasonably that they built and used their own major roads, ports, cities at no cost to the community. So they were exempted from paying this tax. This is not a subsidy by the people. We pay nothing for their roads.

      Mining companies in Australia pay a total of $65Billion a year into the National economy in resource rent taxes, state taxes, payroll taxes and PAYE taxes they are the backbone of our taxation system and our country. They are not subsidized. They money they spend is loaned by ordinary men and women who take a risk and invest after they have paid their tax. The hundreds of billions of dollars of infrastructure needed to mine have been built over decades with private money, not your money Frank. So you want more of their money. That is theft, not taxation.

      Green energy is entirely dependent taxes and subsidies or it would not exist because it does not make economic or even practical sense. The inconvenient truth is that it is not sustainable. Socialism works until you run out of other people’s money.

      171

      • #
        ianl8888


        The mining companies argued reasonably that they built and used their own major roads, ports, cities at no cost to the community

        Actually, all primary producers are tax-treated for diesel fuel in this way – farmers, fishing fleets etc

        It is hard to imagine how a fishing vessel at sea using its’ diesel engine can damage public land roads but greenies insist that it does so it’s a subsidy. Likewise a diesel-powered vehicle in an underground mine … or a tractor on the black soils of Central Q’ld wheat fields

        121

        • #
          Another Ian

          Ian

          Re diesel and farming

          Sometimes when driving a dozer one needs intense concentration on the job in progress. But sometimes one gets time to think (like when doing agricultural work) and I’ve come up with the following as some relief for the flogging we’ve had with drought and green idiocy. With the current job I seem to be participating in the following pet hates of ecofadists

          1. I’m driving a dozer
          2. I’m using fuel rebated diesel
          3. I’m producing carbon dioxide
          4. I’m reseeding rangeland with buffel grass
          5. It will recycle carbon dioxide
          6. It will be grazed by ruminant livestock – or at least that which escapes the kangaroos will

          So we’ll see what “thumbs out”

          130

      • #
        gnome

        Not quite, T, any fuel they use on major roads or in cities, they pay excise on. It’s only off-road use which is excise free. There is no argument for any road on public land to be available for excise-free use, and no mining company has ever built a city, “at no cost to the community” or otherwise.

        20

      • #
        Griffo

        The Greeks seem to have run out of luck,though I would not be to sure ,the EU likes crazy,crazy…

        30

    • #
      me@home

      Frank, getting found out again with misusing English.

      41

  • #
    Graeme No. 3

    As I understand it, the change is the loss of exemption from the Climate Change levy, which is paid by coal, oil, gas, nuclear and hydro schemes but until now not by wind or solar, nor wood chip burning as at Drax.
    This means that renewables will have their profit margin cut, not that they will be out of business. Thus Drax will lose about 5 pounds out of just over 105.

    150

  • #
    Graeme No. 3

    The word of the day is Mumpsimus, a person who adheres to old ideas in spite of evidence that they are wrong or unreasonable. Can you think of anybody who deserves that term?

    250

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Me!

      50

      • #
        Graeme No.3

        I don’t think so, unless what you mean is relying on facts, not succumbing to hysteria when all about are losing their heads, and not accepting solutions based on wishful thinking and/or requiring faeries or unicorns.

        I posted before Frank appeared, but what timing!

        51

  • #
    PeterS

    It will be interesting to see what happens when the next financial crisis hits, which will probably make the last one look like a picnic. Will they continue to waste vast amounts of money on renewable energies when the demand falls off the cliff? Already in China they are struggling to justify building any more power stations of any kind as growth has slowed down dramatically.

    180

    • #
      Manfred

      It’s hitting the Fourth Reich as you wrote that PeterS. The Greek tragedy, creates more trouble for a faltering German economy already sagging under legislated requirements to use renewables at prohibitive, progress arresting cost. And while we’re there, the last thing the Greeks will succumb to is another overbearing German experience after their awful misery under the Third Reich in WW2, which as you may know, led to the unification of communist and right Greek resistance movements against a common foe. Regrettably, they then set about each other post WW2 in a vicious civil war until 1949.

      The Greeks are epigenetically wired to be hypersensitive to anything emanating from a Green Germany, particularly one pontificating from the UN proto-global state, Europe, being cheered on by Obama and Soros from across the ditch.

      220

      • #
        PeterS

        If you believe there is a Fourth Reich then it’s got off to a rough start, just like he previous three, which means it’s got a lot more in it to come, just like the previous three (unfortunately). When the EU failed experiment is complete, out of the shes will probably rise a dictator much like Hitler if not a lot worse. Next time though he will have a much better chance of world domination given the weakening Western societies. History repeats yet again. Ancient Greece and Roman empires should be mandatory lessons for all students.

        70

  • #
    Just-A-Guy

    People who have their pension plans tied to ‘renewables’ will also lose unless they ‘get out’ in time.

    I hope my comment is clear enough to make the point as I’m not that well versed in the way these pensions are managed.

    Only basic economics under my belt. :(

    Abe

    230

    • #
      Just-A-Guy

      Help?

      Abe

      30

    • #
      bobl

      Abe,
      Undoubtedly some pension funds delve in so called ethical investments, but in general they return less so people with pension funds dabbling in that sector will get less. You can usually find out the portfolio if you ask.

      Me, I have a plan where I get to choose the investments, and I have zero renewables. The only interest I have is possibly in rare earth mining. 1. because that includes nuclear fuels, and 2. because things like neodymium have utility that pretty much stands alone, with or without renewables strong magnets have their uses.

      210

      • #
        Just-A-Guy

        bobl,

        Thank’s for the reply. Gives me a place to start learning some more and fill in all the gaps. My naive impression was that these would yield higher dividends because of their having fixed prices higher than fosil fuels guaranteed by law.

        Cheers
        Abe

        30

        • #
          bobl

          Yes, and no, they also have costs that are much higher than fossil fuels, that is the unit cost of their output after amortizing the infrastructure over the life of the hardware is probably 10-30 times coal’s unit cost. They are loss making from the beginning, the only reason they can sell their wares is that our government forces wholesalers to take their energy instead of the cheap stuff from coal – that’s what the RET does, it’s a quota system. What happens is the government gives over your cash to bring the built cost down to within a sniff of coal, and then they allow them to charge more to make up the rest. The cost is passed on to you and me either through our taxes or power bills.

          Now think what happens to share prices if:
          1. Subsidies are reduced or withdrawn, that is the quota is reduced or the premium renewables are allowed to charge is reduced
          2. The government goes broke paying the subsidies to build this stuff (Think Greece)
          3. The company either is say 30% wrong on the life of the infrastructure
          or
          4. The actual output is only 50% of that planned because of say “Climate Change” oops the weather
          or
          5. Both
          6. A Cyclone or storm breaks everything
          7. There is a disruptive technology. (Somebody actually comes up with a viable, reliable, market competitive, renewable tech – like say Thorium or Biochar. This can put the high cost renewables out of business overnight.)

          Also, look at it like this – a Gigawatt coal plant might cost say a billion, but a gigawatt solar plant costs 30 Billion. If you have the same number of shares then the renewables shares cost to earnings has to be 30 times the coal shares. Or put another way, all things being equal the dividend from the renewable plant (per share) will be 1/30 th of the dividend from the coal plant. Finally, the government isn’t really that keen on it’s grant dollars being doled out to shareholders instead of being sunk into infrastructure. You wont see benefit from the grants, only from the RET, that is the additional cost added to electricity bills.

          Finally, you need to understand that consumer prices for electricity are currently ABOVE the cost that the consumer could replace the grid with another technology, I can replace grid electricity with diesel today at about the same price per kWh – this is NOT good because it opens the door to substitution. Look at what substitution is doing to Aussie Post. Further cost increases from more renewables would only drive consumers into generating their own power. The costs would spiral out of control as one consumer after another fell off the grid reducing the customer base. Prices cannot continue to rise.

          You can’t really win, the unreliability of renewables make investment a real risk and the liklihood is that over time the dividend will be much lower for renewables than fossil generation. Since this tech doesn’t really work, it can really only be sustained by force of law, few would use it if they had the choice. These things have been done before and they have a habit of coming crashing down when someone invents a better mousetrap. If there is any bump (advantage) to holding renewables in your portfolio I think it’ll be short-lived. I don’t think renewables are a good long term play. Having said that OPEC has played havoc with my oil shares so your mileage may vary with any investment :-(

          PS> I am just an Engineer, and not endowed with any magical ability to see the future of the stock market, so don’t take this as financial advice. This is just what I think about renewables long term viability. The one thing I do know is that the stock market is completely irrational and always surprises (usually on the downside). Do your own checks and see a licensed financial advisor before you put your hard earned anywhere.

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            Manfred

            The costs would spiral out of control as one consumer after another fell off the grid reducing the customer base. Prices cannot continue to rise.

            bobl, that is an important point and one I have made recurrently over time. The plaintive media cry a year or so ago that 30% of the residents of Glasgow would be power impoverished and presumably reduced to burning their furniture or maybe wood from nearby parks and gardens to keep warm and to cook. The Utilities would collapse as their market shriveled, the unit cost increased to compensate leading to an increasing drop off of bill payers. The only lights left burning would be those of the wealthy and subsidised institutions.

            We’d be back to life at the beginning of electricity with a growing number of independent generators. Coincidentally, at the same time The Queen installed a private generators to supply Windsor Castle from the Thames flow. I doubt that’s an option for the sheeple.

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              bobl

              In Australia, it’s happening now. Not so much through diesel gensets but rather solar and energy efficiency. One by one I am taking my appliances off the grid so that now, in the depths of winter heating and with an electricity unit price almost twice what they were at peak electricity bill, I now have a bill that is 1/3rd of the cost at its peak and heading down. The government with its subsidies has let the genie out of the bottle and grid electricity is on its way out for domestic use. Somewhere around 40c per kWh and I’ll probably opt for diesel+solar over grid.

              To successfully do this you need storage, which Elon Musk has done and a different energy management strategy, which is a project I’m doing now.

              Domestic solar is viable – to a point.

              PS> For those that want to emulate the success, I am starting a business with this soon.

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                ianl8888


                … To successfully do this you need storage, which Elon Musk has done

                Please elaborate on this:

                1) physical characteristics – size,location etc
                2) actual power output – watts and time available
                3) appliances you actually run at night off this storage simultaneously
                4) re-charging characteristics – time, method, costs, frequency

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                Bill

                Musk’s battery is hardly efficient, otherwise he’d be in mass production not dribbling out those awfull tesla toys.

                Tesla’s battery systems include two consumer-grade batteries — the Powerwall line — that store 7 kilowatt hours (kWh) and 10kWh worth of power and cost $3,000 and $3,500, respectively. A third battery system for commercial use is called the Powerpack; it can store 100kWh and will sell for $25,000. (http://www.computerworld.com/article/2918235/sustainable-it/can-elon-musks-battery-really-cut-your-power-lines.html)

                BUT…. even his own supporters tell the press that Musk is out to lunch. “In the U.S., the average household uses 30kWh of power each day, at a peak use rate of 1.2kW, according to the U.S. Energy Information Agency. Tesla’s Powerwall batteries can provide 2kW of continuous power and has a peak power rating of 3kW. The average home, however, would need three Tesla 10kWh batteries, at a cost of over $10,000, to meet all its energy needs, something Lux Research’s Frankel is dubious will happen. … As admirable as Musk’s vision may be, Frankel doesn’t believe coal-fired power plants, which make up the bulk of energy production in the U.S. and around the world, will be going away anytime soon. The sheer cost of ramping up solar production to the levels Musk envisions would be “astronomical” and take decades, Frankel said.
                Today, for example, the U.S. gets only about 1% of its power from solar.
                “Elon’s vision of [an] all-renewable future, and storage being the missing piece, is in some ways an idealist vision and one that will not likely happen as any sort of medium-term opportunity,” Frankel said.”

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                bobl

                Ian, read more carefully next time!.

                If you have a generator running off Diesel fuel then the generator is VERY inefficient at low load. You need to use the generator at max load to charge a battery array, which then feeds the house otherwise the cost to idle the generator along dominates and it becomes uneconomic WRT grid power. The neighbors will complain about the noise if the genset is running a lot.

                In answer to your questions
                Please elaborate on this:

                1) physical characteristics – size,location etc

                About 750-1000A/H at 12V aught to do it. Lead acid is fine. That’s probably about 7-10 Traction batteries.

                2) actual power output – watts and time available

                Depends on the batteries but 5kW aught to be reasonably achievable – 5KW inverters are reasonably available too.

                3) appliances you actually run at night off this storage simultaneously
                In my house, pretty much all of them given that as I pointed out, the high current short duration loads (like ovens and cooktops) are left to the grid to supply and the water is LPG fired. You need to have grid powerpoints (lets say Red ones) and battery power points (lets say Green ones), plug the microwave into a red, and the TV into a green one. You also need to reduce consumption quite a bit to achieve this – LED lighting, and for example I am moving my theatre system off of a PC (40 Watts) to a Raspberry PI (1Watt). The trick is to get all the low power but constantly on things off the grid because it’s the TIME they are on that costs, not the power they consume.

                4) re-charging characteristics – time, method, costs, frequency

                Depends on how big the generator is, the aim would be a 3 hour charging time at 4KW but sometimes that’s battery dependent. Method = Solar + Diesel, Costs Maybe 10K-15K Total (after STCs) – The battery is recharged whenever necessary either using solar if available or Diesel, or both. You can arrange to kick in the Geni when the load is high, so for example you can get your stove off the grid by arranging to start the generator on demand, it would be good to charge the battery while that happens. If you have a reasonably efficient stove and oven (EG Induction cooktop and triple glazed oven) then typically cooking will only cost you about 2-6 kWh a day, thats as low as half what those little loads cost even though they are 2KW devices. That’s because they are only on for an hour or two.

                Doing this (as I pointed out) requires that you pay particular attention to your idle load – My place once I’ve gone to work or to sleep currently idles at around 200W (5kWh a day) on a good day our household consumption can nett out at just 9kWh. I aim to get that down to just 50W (1.2 kWh) by solar powering the small loads that make up that idle load – The Router and NAS, my theatre system, our notebook computers, all of which can run from 12V directly. At that point I should be able to get 5kWh a day on a good day.

                This is what the business will be, for a fee I’ll analyse your power consumption and provide a report on your options for reducing your bill. If you have Solar with a reasonable feed-in tariff then I might be able to reduce the bill to zero, though can’t say what the capex will be to do that.

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      Graeme No.3

      Just-A-Guy:

      Coal fired in Australia sells for $30 a MWh.
      Gas fired costs around $65 (that’s for Closed Cycle Gas Turbines)
      Wind costs $110-120 to produce. So do the Open Cycle GT used for backup.
      Solar PV costs $150-180. Solar heat even more.

      If there were no subsidies etc. how many people would expect to make money from renewables?

      When Spain reduced the subsidies plans for new renewables were cancelled. the UK has just reduced the return from renewables by about 5%, and there is weeping and gnashing of teeth around the troughs of renewables.

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    The extra £68 a year that is added to the electricity bills vastly understates the problem. There are a number of reasons.
    - Subsidies for renewables do not include the extra cost of extending the grid. Wind turbines are in remote places, such as the North of Scotland. Building the power lines to the centers of population is hugely expensive. Estimates have put this extra investment at £100bn over about 20 years, compared with about £20-£25bn annual retail sales of electricity.
    - A free market would contract for electricity to be supplied when demanded. Wind power would thus get a lower rate than nuclear and fossil fuels, as we cannot predict when the wind will blow. The market is rigged the other way. At periods of low demand, wind turbine operators are sometime paid to switch the things off. More importantly, for the electricity from wind is given priority, so conventional power stations cannot predict load days in advance. Further, they end up running at lower than average capacity, further increasing costs.
    - Any new nuclear or fossil fuel power stations are severely hindered by protests and planning constraints. We even had father of global warming James Hansen arrested for protesting at the site of a new coal-fired power station a few years ago. So existing energy suppliers are increasingly faced with less competition.
    As an example, I read last year that in Wisconsin the power company can buy in electricity at $30 (£20) per megawatt. In the UK the wholesale market price is £40-£50 per megawatt and offshore wind turbines get around £120-£140 per megawatt.

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      I put your comment into the post as an update. Thanks Kevin.

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        Another aspect to consider with respect to electricity costs is the availability of fuel supplies. In the UK much of the electricity comes from natural gas. Additionally most homes (including my own) use gas for central heating and hot water. Per kilowatt is about one third the price of electricity.
        Until the 1970s gas was produced from coal. Since then it has come from the North Sea, although in the last 5-10 years the supplies have been dwindling, so much is imported – mostly from Qatar. But there is hope for energy security. In the North of England the British Geological survey have a central estimate of 37.6 tcm of shale gas. (Report 5.4MB pdf) Conservatively under current technology 10% is recoverable, but in 2011 UK consumption was just .08 tcm. That is 47 years of gas supply, with real competition possibly doubling that. What is more the thickness of the shale is up to 5000 meters. The Marcellus shale in the USA which has helped reduced energy prices has a depth of 5 to 250 feet (1.5 to 76 meters). It would be viable, except eco-warriors block it at every move. There is shale gas in central Scotland, and South of London, and extending into the North Sea from Newcastle. We just do not know how much.
        Remember that “Green” energy means switching from gas to electricity. With a shale gas revolution the UK could have plentiful gas at 2-3p Kwh retail, with energy security. The glorious green revolution to save the planet means electricity at over 20p Kwh (currently 12-15pKwh or A$0.22-0.28). Even if CAGW were true, the UK produces just 1.5% of global CO2 emissions, so it makes no difference to the planet. But it would make £500 a year difference to the average household’s energy costs.

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          tom0mason

          Kevin,
          The British government did not shout about it but very large gas storage plans are already very mature around the country
          e.g.

          Stublach Gas Storage Project is a salt cavern storage facility currently under development in Northwich, Cheshire, UK. The £350m facility will be one of the largest in the UK, with a total storage capacity of 400 million cubic metres of natural gas. It will have very high injection and withdrawal rates of up to 33mm³/d.

          The project includes the creation of 28 caverns at a depth of 600m in three phases between 2013 and 2018. The first ten caverns of the first phase are expected to be commissioned in 2013. The facility is expected to be fully operational by 2018.

          Storengy, a unit of GDF Suez, is executing the project. The facility is expected to provide security of natural gas supply to the UK.

          There are a few others, some are listed here .

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            Tom,
            I know some that works at the Storengy site, and it sounds pretty impressive. As you can imagine it has a very strict no-Smoking policy. :) Impressive as it sounds, this facility can only store 0.5% of the UK’s annual requirements.
            But storage is not the solution to energy security at the lowest price in the longer term. It is having reliable supply from multiple sources.

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      tom0mason

      Kevin,

      don’t forget that the government has already decided the future price of electricity when they negotiated the new Hinkley Point C upgrade contract.

      The team in place to build and operate two new EPR units at Hinkley Point C in Britain’s county of Somerset will be led by EDF Group with a 45-50% stake. It has letters of intent with China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) and China General Nuclear Corporation (CGN) to take 30-40% between them, while reactor designer Areva will take 10% and EDF continues talks with other “interested parties” regarding a potential stake of 15%.

      This consortium became possible after EDF and the UK government concluded negotiations on the contract for difference scheme that will be used to give a fixed income from the power supplied by the new power station. A price of £92.50 per MWh was agreed as the strike price for the project, meaning the government will top up EDF’s income to this level if wholesale prices are lower. EDF will have to pay back to government if market prices are higher. The figure would be changed to £89.50 per MWh if EDF goes ahead with its second nuclear project, two further EPRs at Sizewell C.

      [my bold]

      Not that this project will happen anyway as the reactor design has issues (container vessels on similar French built reactors are cracking), and Austria (via the EU law courts) are legally challenging the UK’s right to build atomic power stations as Austrian don’t like them. And the EU will side with Austria as it fits with EU plans.

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      Roy Hogue

      I’ll add my voice to say, spot on, Kevin.

      And I wish it were not that way. We’ll all be suffering from this.

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    Manfred

    A trivial step born of political self-interest, facing an imminent political reality of the unsurvivable wrath of a populous waking up the actualisation of grasping, dirty Green fingers deep in their pockets fleecing them alive for quite literally nothing except the creation of a new Soros fawning Green elite and the ridiculous belief that there is a need to manage the chaotic weather…forever. (Just in case no one realised, there is no limitation to eco-marxist intervention. There is no ‘job done’ point).

    The change has nothing to do with rational thought or the restoration of pre-progressive, pre-precautionary science. The same survival reflex would have equally emanated from the rabid cli-fi folk at the Conversation, purely out of self-interested necessity and the need to maintain a their funding stream.

    You see, it is imperative to keep the sheeple poised delicately between abject impoverishment and social narcosis, quiet and at the same time, sustainably fleeceable ad infinitum.

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    tom0mason

    This link displays information where you can see the demand, and where it is generated.
    Looking at the graphs under the Nuclear/Coal/CCGT/Wind (GW) heading shows the amount of electricity generated by Nuclear,Coal,CCGT, and the massive contribution Windmills (blue line)have supplied. Note in Britain Windfarms operators are allowed to supply electricity from diesel generators to ‘in fill’ when demand requires and there is no wind. This diesel supplied electricity is not accounted for separately (it is shown as part of the wind generated total)
    Also note the way that Combined Cycle Gas Turbines(CCGT) are being used to attempt to even out the ‘renewables :mrgreen: ’ output. I wonder how much this style of operation causes more maintenance for the Gas generation plant. No need to worry eh? The electricity consumers pay for all of that! :cry:

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      Manfred

      This diesel supplied electricity is not accounted for separately (it is shown as part of the wind generated total)

      The total wind generation is given as 6.11% (1.85GW) and is stated to arise only from wind. Please would you be able to provide an evidential link for the invisible (unaccounted) diesel fractional contribution to ‘wind’?

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        tom0mason

        Sorry Manfred,
        I must admit I can not find the document/reference right now, it was 2 years ago when I last look for it.

        This document I believe has references to the payments buried deep within this very, very, complex document, I have also forgotten the euphemism that was used for the diesel plants, it was not anything obvious or standard.

        Other relevant documents about cost are protected from FoI on security/confidentiality grounds. Some are released here -
        https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/payments-to-wind-farms-foi-request-130448

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          Graeme No.3

          STOR. Short Term Operating Reserve.

          There are about 2600 diesel generators that have been installed under this scheme. Think a shipping container with a 1 MW motor, although there are bigger unit now – see http://www.ocktcom.com/generatorinstallations/casestudy.aspx?positionId=4. That has pictures.

          Quote “Calls typically last around one hour and amount to approximately 50–60 hours of running per year. For standby diesel generators or gas-fired CHP generators, STOR is the largest INCREMENTAL REVENUE opportunity, with the lowest relative impact on generator run hours, and the lowest exposure to fuel price risk, of any premium energy activity” (my capitals).

          Translated into money, that means the units pay around 33% p.a. and that would increase under the current policies in the UK (shutting down reliable coal and nuclear, while building more wind farms).

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            tom0mason

            Graeme No.3,

            That is the ‘normal’ contracted STOR payment system.

            This is all from memory so I may well get it wrong. As it was designed by Ed Davy’s team, so nothing was straight forward, open, or obvious.
            If I Recall Correctly there is[was?] a system whereby to get everything over the ‘Hurdle’ [a technical/accountant term to pay excessively to get the scheme running, and the wind farm owner/operator take all the risk of failure.] that allows the Wind Farm operator to call upon a provider to supply power, at a much better preferential price (than STOR), to cover his demanded requirements if he’s unable to meet them. This power is more often than not from diesel power though there is provision [not used AFAIK] for larger units (e.g. DRAX) to cover via a contracted obligation with the wind farm.
            The diesel power provider may be part of the STOR network, or a contracted-in provider hired by the wind-farm provider, either way they get paid even more than STOR the tariff. This part of the scheme is all part of the wind farm contract and was only to last for the initial run-up period (5 years??) from the wind farm’s installation/officially on-grid. Wind farm owners can opt out of it [reduces risk and payment] and STOR takes on the provision. The payment method was not obvious from the documents but it was there somewhere.

            You may also note that nowhere in the government documents is there a cost for oil powered generation! No equipment or fuel cost what so ever! So how is it paid for? Via 3rd party contractors? But much of STOR is part of the government via quasi-separate outfits like the military, NHS, BBC, etc,. This way the government can get money back when it’s on-line/available or used.

            The future is even more interesting as ‘SMART’ metering overlays a layer of consumer control onto the whole grid system.

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          tom0mason

          With many lines of …

          Table showing the hurdle rates used can be found in Annex…Please note that while we have aligned this methodology as far as possible with the Dynamic Dispatch Model (DDM) modelling there are some differences …technologies are modelled endogenously in the DDM but we have applied an exogenous profile.
          Please note these estimates should be viewed in the context of the sensitivities and uncertainties highlighted in the text of this report.

          to decode and find the other documents/references, I can’t say I wish to do it again!

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    Brill

    Whenever the issue of subsidies for green energy arises, the counter argument is always that coal/gas energy is subsidised. What is the extent of subsidies to these. How do the 2 compare. Is it the energy companies being subsidised or the coal mines?

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      Andrew

      Coal is not subsidised. Anyone who tells you it is is lying. False “subsidies” claimed are generally in the following categories:
      - Not levying road tax on diesel consumed offroad in mines and farms. (The fact that road tax is taken as diesel fuel tax and then rebated on receipt of a substantiated claim is a subsidy FROM the miner, giving the govt an interest free loan, which they get to keep in case of insolvency I guess.)
      - Govt providing poles and wires, as Gillard promised during her infamous “I rule out a carbon tax” speech. Begging the question of why we were paying subsidies to windmills that weren’t even attached to the grid during the Rudd term. For some reason, providing poles and wires to Latrobe is a “subsidy” even if the poles and wires are later sold at a profit. But providing poles and wires to a useless windmill that rarely spins is NEVER a subsidy.
      - Govt providing roads, on which petrol-driven cars and trucks drive – likewise train tracks. (Again, it is NEVER a subsidy to provide roads on which hybrid or electric cars drive.)
      - Allowing coal miners to actually deduct expenses such as depreciation or exploration is a subsidy, rather than paying tax on gross revenue like no other company in any country on earth is taxed.

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        ianl8888


        Not levying road tax on diesel consumed offroad in mines and farms

        And fishing fleets – see my comment above

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      bobl

      Not sure anout this in the UK but here the greenies bray about this. But what they call a subsidy is nothing more than the tax break they get for R&D, depreciation and offsets for operating costs. Diesel power in particular doesnt pay as much excise because part of the fuel taxes are for road building. Since generators dont wear out the roads they don’t have to pay the tax.

      Now all these taxes are rebates that absolutely every business that is in a position to claim does claim, in order to reduce their tax bill. These aren’t subsidies they are ordinary deductions or exemptions that every taxpayer in Australia is elligible for. A tax you don’t pay is not a subsidy, it’s actually your money untill the government gets it, a tax rule that means you don’t pay a tax doesn’t means you are subsidied it means you get to keep your own money. Somehow the greenies think that if the government could have charged you more and didn’t, then that somehow makes that money a gift from the government as if it was ever the government’s to give.

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      Dariusz

      Where do u get these subsidies from and subsided by what industry? Wind or solar? Why would you even ask the question? Oil and gas industry ( and coal) has been subsidising everything, treated like milk cow for generations. Billions and billions of dollars and you still dare to say that these industries are being subsidised? What alternate universe you,re living in?
      If you don,t believe ask any exploration company (I have been working in this industry for the last 25 years now) that has to drill a 100 mln dol. well on 10% chance of success. In fact Shell drilled a well called Palta-1 3 years ago offshore WA that cost them >370 mill dol. and it was dry. Tell me again how subsidies come into play?

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      I went through fossil fuel subsidies here
      http://joannenova.com.au/2012/09/government-burn-70-billion-a-year-subsidizing-renewables-and-wild-claims-of-fossil-fuel-subsidies-debunked/

      “In Western nations, they mean “tax deductions” for fossil fuel companies. Where a subsidy for renewable energy is a handout from the government, a “subsidy” for fossil fuel company means the government lets them keep some of the money they earned.

      Here’s how the SMH phrased it when discussing the situation in Australia:

      The biggest fossil fuel incentives were in unclaimed revenue, including about $5 billion in fuel tax rebates for greenhouse-intensive industries.

      More than $1.1 billion was spent on fringe benefits tax concessions for company cars.

      Groups like Greenpeace and The Australian Conservation Foundation argue that really, Governments are helping fossil fuel companies far more than green ones. But while governments rewrite national economies to help “green” companies, about half of the help for fossil fuels is simply that the government didn’t take as much off them as it could. The net flow of money is still from Big-Fossil-Energy towards Big-Government. It takes a special kind of grand entitlement to call that a subsidy.

      Indeed you could argue that fossil fuels subsidize the government. Exxon paid 17.6% tax (2008-1020 data). That may sound a lowish rate, but how does it compare to other companies in other sectors? If there is a “tax avoidance” issue, how is that unique to fossil fuels? Doesn’t every big company do their best? GE after all, earned $21 bn for renewables, and paid 0% tax.”

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        gai

        Socialists call a tax break for a fossil fuel company a “subsidy” for the fossil fuel company because from their point of view ALL Corporate revenue is STOLEN from the ‘workers’. Since the ‘workers’ are the property of the State the revenue is therefore STOLEN from the State.

        See, it all makes sense as long as you understand the individual is the serf of the state and his only duty is to serve the state.

        (I wish I could use a /sarc but unfortunately that is actually how they think.)

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        Dariusz

        Following this logic any tax deduction is a subsidy. That includes my office expenditure, computers, wages that are paid for the workers or negative gearing. Anyone that had no business working for someone could think that. In fact as we all know the opposite is true. The existence of the green blob would not exist if it wasn,t for the subsidies. The parasite can,t imagine other universe so it projects its thinking on everything else. Freudian case.

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          ROM

          The single largest hidden and most biased and iniquitous subsidy to the Renewable Energy industry; aka Wind and solar, is the legal and government mandated requirement that the Grid distributor and Grid owner companies, as distinct from the fossil fueled powered generation companies, are forced to take all of the hugely subsidised, unreliable and intermittent power output from the wind and solar renewable energy companies before they are allowed to take power from the ultra reliable always there power output from the fossil fueled generators.

          That is the single biggest, most destructive of efficiency and of destructive of national economics and most carefully preserved by the renewable energy scammers “subsidy” that has been mandated by governments everywhere that have fallen for this wind and solar renewable energy stupidity.

          A hidden subsidy problem that can be very easily fixed by governments just by removing this mandatory requirement from the Grid operator’s ie; the power line owners and operators obligations.

          Even better with the wide spread installation of Smart Meters, it has become technologically quite easy to give the consumers the right to choose which power generation company including fossil fueled, wind, solar, biomass and etc companies, they wish to use the power from.

          The consumer would then pay the appropriate costs as charged by his / her choice of power generator which would be a separate cost from that the grid owners and operators would charge for the use of the lines.
          All of this would now comparatively easy to instigate with today’s Smart Meter technology.

          And the consumer whether private, public or corporate would get to choose the both the type of power generation as well as the company they wish to buy their power from.
          It is a system that technologically could be readily instigated today and would definitely allow those who believe in renewable energy get to choose to use renewable energy if and when it was available.

          And with Smart Meter technology and it’s short range radio interconnections between Smart Meters and the central control system, if the wind and solar power was not available then Smart Meter technology would simply disconnect that [ green ? ] consumer until such time as the renewable wind and solar power was once again available where upon they would again have access to power depending on how much was being generated by the wind and solar generators.

          Wind and solar have had some 30 years or more of massive world wide subsidies now amounting to close to a trillion dollars over the last couple of decades alone, poured into their coffers so it is time for them to now stand on their own feet and compete on a level playing field with other forms of power generation.

          If they can’t compete for the consumers dollar against other forms of power generation after three decades of heavily biased tax payer funded and highly advantageous and highly discretionary advantages all running entirely in their favour which has allowed them to develop their supposed superior technology over the last three decades, they should now be allowed to suffer the no doubt severe economic consequences of failing to satisfy the consumer’s requirements and demands.

          Like Spain the solar and wind operators including household solar should and I have no doubt will be charged sometime in the not very distant future for the use of the lines and grid when they feed income producing power back into the grid.

          And that is no different to the economic circumstances that other power generators have to deal with.

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        Brill

        Thanks Jo. And everyone else. Interesting that the same argument was brought up by Frank

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    Andrew

    Tell me again how Tony A666ott is “out of step” with the world? That’s NZ, UK, Canadia, Japan, Spain, Greece, Germany, one of the Garias etc running away from their carbon commitments as fast as they can. China agreeing never to have a carbon tax except for a $1 tax in a particular zone in Shanghai that will entitle them to be a net seller of carbon credits into a world market at 10x that (every time they build a dam that they were going to anyhow for the water, and which our Greens would faint in horror at). And 90% of the world’s population has never had a carbon price of any description, including the USA.

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    Andrew

    To ecoloons like the Lib-Dems, cost control is not a measure of the success of a programme. I doubt they would even understand the question. The more they waste on subsidies, the more successful and the better the programme is. Cutting the subsidy is bad.

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    pat

    surely GIQE makes sense!!!

    2 July: New Statesman: We need to invest in a positive, green and socially just future
    The Green MP lays out her proposal for green infrastructure quantitative easing.
    by Caroline Lucas (UK Green Party)
    Next week the Conservatives will present their first Budget as a majority Government.
    The context is grim…
    One such alternative offers a route to rebuilding our economy, tackling climate change, and providing decent long terms jobs in every city, town and village across the UK.
    It’s known as Green Infrastructure Quantitative Easing (GIQE), a concept first proposed by the Green New Deal Group and an idea that, if you can get past its unappealing name, basically means investment in a positive green and socially just future.
    GIQE could contribute to strengthening the UK economy via a carefully costed, nationwide programme to train and employ a ‘carbon army’…
    http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/07/caroline-lucas-we-need-invest-positive-green-and-socially-just-future

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      Peter Miller

      That has got to be one of the scariest pieces of ecolunacy I have ever read.

      You need to read it a couple of times to realise this concept of GIQE makes the current Greek government look economically literate and reliable.

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        Rereke Whakaaro

        A lot of Brits have moved to Greece.

        I am trying to figure out which way the cause and effect relationship works.

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    • #
      Another Ian

      Pat

      It seems to me that anyone pushing

      ” a positive green and socially just future”,

      along with believers in

      “a worldwide level playing field in agriculture”

      might be interested in a membership of

      http://www.theflatearthsociety.org/cms/

      to occupy some of their spare time

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    Keith L

    Do these economic illiterates ever wonder what subsidies represent?
    The money which they greedily demand to make their ‘renewables’ work has to come from somewhere and I would say that money is generated by the intelligent use of energy. ie the money they need to keep their silly ideas going only exists because somewhere else some real energy has been produced from a real energy source. This is obviously a source that has to generate a surplus rather than get a subsidy and that is of course fossil.
    So I would contend that every $100 in subsidies scrounged represents $100 worth of coal burnt somewhere. Add that to the ‘low carbon’ ‘renewables’ and see how great they look.

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      Graeme No.3

      NO they don’t wonder. They believe there is a big bag of money somewhere and the louder you squeal the more you get.
      That’s why so many of the Greens are paid by the public purse. And as any public servant knows, you don’t save money because that will reduce your allocation for the next year.

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    tom0mason

    Off-topic but its being touted across the news wires Climate change impacts on bumblebees converge across continents .
    Yes another meta-study of meta-data has come to the conclusion that…
    yep, bumblebees are dying out because of climate change.

    By carefully selecting many reports (just look at the References and Notes) saying ‘climate change’ is killing this, that, and bumblebees, they have come to the astounding conclusion that ‘climate change’ is killing bumblebees. Wow!
    Hey, whats wrong with collating selected studies/data you can find saying what you want to say, dissect out the bits you want, then reform by statistical methods the data, and call it a ‘new research finding’. All just to prove your advocacy view ‘probably’ correct, and beg for more research money —
    As Mr Lysenko would say “Tovarich! Forward with the ‘New Science’!”

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      PeterPetrum

      Yup! This needs more research to look more closely at the northern and southern limits. Please send more money!

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    pat

    Maurice Newman says it, bad. Pope says it, good.

    10 July: SMH: Pope Francis calls for new economic order, criticises capitalism
    by Philip Pullella and Sarah Marsh, Reuters
    In Bolivia during his tour of South America, Pope Francis on Thursday urged the downtrodden to change the world economic order, denouncing a “new colonialism” by agencies that impose austerity programs and calling for the poor to have the “sacred rights” of labour, lodging and land…
    “Let us not be afraid to say it: we want change, real change, structural change,” the Pope said, decrying a system that “has imposed the mentality of profit at any price, with no concern for social exclusion or the destruction of nature”…
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/pope-francis-calls-for-new-economic-order-criticises-capitalism-20150710-gi9cip.html

    10 July: CBS :Anna Matranga: Pope Francis apologizes for church’s “sins” against indigenous peoples
    SANTA CRUZ, Bolivia: During the passionate hour-long speech, the Pope pleaded for a new economic world order, asked forgiveness for the sins of the Catholic church against Latin America’s indigenous people, and called on humanity to save the planet from destruction caused by unfettered greed…
    “Let us say no to an economy of exclusion and inequality, where money rules…That economy kills. That economy excludes. That economy destroys Mother Earth,” he said.
    A just economy, said Pope Francis, must not only guarantee what he called the three “Ls” – land, lodging and labor – but also education, health care, sports, recreation and culture…
    He said protecting Mother Earth was “perhaps the most important task facing us today,” and said cowardice in defending it was a grave sin. Calling the earth “our common home,” he said it was being “pillaged, laid waste and harmed with impunity.”
    The pontiff called on people and movements to peacefully and firmly “mobilize and demand that appropriately and urgently-needed measures be taken.” In June, Pope Francis issued an important document urging immediate action on climate change…
    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/pope-francis-apologies-for-catholic-churchs-sins-against-indigenous-peoples/

    for days we’ve been hearing the Pope is calling for a new world order, yet i don’t see ABC reporting it. mockery of Newman still fresh in their memories at “their ABC”?

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    pat

    the farce continues! don’t know whether to laugh or cry. a shock jock gets a single figure wrong 2 years ago, and it’s still a raging MSM issue in July 2015!

    10 July: SMH: Nicole Hasham: Alan Jones comments on UN climate change report inaccurate: media watchdog
    He declared a United Nations report on climate change “got it wrong by almost 100 per cent”, but shock jock Alan Jones was the one who blundered, Australia’s media watchdog has found.
    The Australian Communications and Media Authority on Friday found the 2GB host, described on the station’s website as “a phenomenon” and “the nation’s greatest orator and motivational speaker”, breached commercial radio codes in 2013 by making inaccurate comments about the rate of global warming as reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
    The station argued that Jones relied on a front page article in The Australian – an article that was based on incorrect information published in Britain’s Mail on Sunday, and which was corrected before Jones went to air…
    He claimed a previous IPCC report in 2007 said the planet was warming at the rate of 0.2 degrees every decade, and said the updated report put the figure at 0.12 degrees – “almost a 100 per cent error”…
    Comment has been sought from 2GB.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/alan-jones-comments-on-un-climate-change-report-inaccurate-media-watchdog-20150710-gi9fqi.html

    Alan Jones broke broadcast rules with climate change attack – watchdog
    The Guardian – ‎4 hours ago‎
    Jones, who has long challenged the mainstream scientific view of climate change despite having no scientific background, subsequently offered an on-air correction of sorts which concluded with “basically the temperatures have all but stopped rising.”.

    Jones made inaccurate climate claims: ACMA
    SBS – ‎6 hours ago‎
    Broadcaster Alan Jones made inaccurate claims about climate change in a 2013 commentary on the latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the media watchdog has ruled. The Australian Communications and Media Authority found …

    Jones made inaccurate climate claims
    9news.com.au – ‎5 hours ago‎
    Broadcaster Alan Jones made inaccurate claims about climate change in a 2013 commentary that was highly critical of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the media watchdog has ruled

    Jones made inaccurate climate claims: ACMA
    Yahoo7 News – ‎6 hours ago‎

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  • #
    Phil Ford

    As a resident Brit I’m delighted to see our new Conservative Government finally reining in ridiculously unfair ‘green’ subsidies. Alas, our Conservative Government is really only that in name – they are still fully-paid up members of the CAGW glee club, so we won’t see anything much more radical than this tokenistic cage-rattling from them. ‘Call Me Dave’ Cameron still makes all the correct pro-CAGW noises when asked. What else could we have expected from a pro-EU fanboy?

    Still, Cameron’s Chancellor, George Osborne, proves rather more enthusiastic about sticking it to the greens. He’s a fan of fracking, for one thing. I’m confident he’ll keep up the pressure to get Britain’s still fledgling fracking industry up and running, despite the white noise of misinformation and misdirection the likes of Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth launch every time the issue comes up (helped, of course, by their ever-willing comrades in the msm here, especially in the BBC).

    But the BBC are at last having to learn what having a Conservative majority in Parliament might actually mean for them. Still smarting and chafing from the shock of a resounding Conservative triumph in our recent general election, the BBC continues to snipe and snarl at the Government from the sidelines (must be that famed ‘BBC impartiality’), but the Corporation just been clobbered by George Osborne in the summer budget to the tune of £650bn+ pa off its £3.5bn annual bank heist licence fee bill.

    Cue glum faces all around the BBC. It’s immensely entertaining. It might even be be good value for the license fee!

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    Dave in the states

    The general public just does not understand a basic economic law: Somebody else does not ultimately pay for it, they do. That is until they get the bill. The costs of subsidies and taxes and market manipulations and regulations are always passed on in the form of higher prices, reduced wages, and devaluation of their money. It always hurts the poorest the most over the long term.

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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      To address the general public’s lack of understanding, in matters economic, I recommend that “The Sneetches and Other Stories”, by Dr Suess, be compulsory reading in all schools.

      The lesson being that, the only way you can beat the system, is by not being part of it.

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  • #

    There is probably a misguided assumption that coal fired power just MUST be subsidised, because they sell it to the retailers for such a cheap price, and currently, even here in Australia, that’s around $27 to $30 per MegaWattHour. (MWH) Translated down to what you, as a residential consumer might more readily understand, take out your most recent power bill, and look at the Unit Cost for electricity that you are being charged as a Residential consumer, and that’s around 36 cents per KiloWattHour. (KWH)

    So at a generation cost of $27/MWH, that’s 2.7 cents per KWH or around 7.5% of the cost for the electricity you consume.

    Wait a minute!

    2.7 cents per KWH to, umm, make the electricity, and we get charged 36 cents per KWH

    Something fishy there.

    So, perhaps you can see why there may be a false assumption that it just MUST be subsidised, eh!

    So, then why can they afford to charge such a small cost to actually generate the power.

    Because they make so damned much of it, that it lowers the end cost per unit. They can spread all their costs out over that IMMENSE amount of electricity, and, umm, still make a profit.

    So, just look at Bayswater alone.

    It generates 17,500GWH of electricity each year. So breaking it down by powers of ten to KWH, that’s 17,500,000,000 KWH of power at 2.7 cents per KWH, so that’s a yearly incoming from just the sale of electricity to the retailers of $472.5 Million.

    They don’t need to change the cost of the electricity they generate because even the tiniest fraction of a cent means tens of millions of dollars to them.

    They’ve been selling their electricity for around that cost since the (Bayswater) plant was constructed back in 1985.

    So, if the cost of electricity has increased, there is now way in God’s wide World that can be slated down to coal fired power, let alone needing any damned subsidies.

    And hey, have you ever looked at any of those LCOE (Levelised Cost Of Electricity) charts, and noticed how they always quote coal fired power at up around $120+ per MWH.

    Don’t make me laugh!

    Coal fired power doesn’t need any steenkin’ subsidy. They do what it is they do best. Generate absolutely HUMUNGOUS amounts of power, sell it a small unit cost, and still make a healthy profit thank you very much.

    And they can do it for 50 years plus.

    All wind and solar power can do is dream about that.

    Tony.

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    • #
      PeterPetrum

      Thanks, Tony. As usual, really good information for the next chat at the Golf Cub.

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    • #
      Rollo

      Thanks for another excellent post Tony.

      If less than 10% of the 36 cents/KWH goes to the power generating company, how is the remainder divided up? How much goes to the rent-seekers who bill us for the power we use? How much goes back into the power distribution network? How much subsidizes useless wind farms and solar arrays?

      40

  • #
    Ruairi

    While the’West’ leaves its coal in the ground,
    The ‘East’ is not equally bound,
    By emissions control,
    So they’ll burn all their coal,
    Which on Green costly schemes will rebound.

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  • #
    David S

    There is also another cost that doesn’t get taken into account is the opportunity cost that has occurred over recent times as fossil fuels oil and coal have halved over time the relative cost has doubled . As fossil fuels become cheaper renewables become more expensive. If an industry can’t survive without subsidies it can’t survive . Hopefully other countries will follow the UK lead and the renewable industry will collapse along with the global warming scam.

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    ScotsmaninUtah

    “The UK Public sector”

    Although this is nothing to do with Global Warming (my apologies ) , I just wanted to say that the fact that 23% of the working population in Britain work in the public sector, is a really crazy statistic
    As a Libertarian , I am not a big fan of government :(

    As for the reduction in subsidies, It is definitely a move in the right direction.

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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Slight correction: “23% of the working population hold positions in the public sector”. Whether they work or not, is a moot point.

      151

    • #
      tom0mason

      ScotsmaninUtah,

      A substantial part of that 23% are in positions in the British National Health Service, once reputed to be Europe’s largest employer.

      30

      • #
        ScotsmaninUtah

        tom0mason,
        yes NHS workers are definitely a proportion of the overall Public work force, but I would not use “substantial” to describe it.
        Incidentally if I subtract Education AND NHS from the total , I am still left with 50% of the total in government employment. :(

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  • #
    ScotsmaninUtah

    On a slightly different topic (although one of these items is subsidized ) …
    I have heard rumors or rumblings that “low frequencies” from Wind turbines is making residents very sick. :(
    Luckily, here in Utah we have built a half dozen of them right outside the NSA building.

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  • #
    • #

      Don’t you just love the way they cherry pick one specific day out of a whole year to highlight how their beloved renewables perform so well. (and that works two ways, as I will soon show you)

      Notice that this is the AEMO, the official regulator for electrical power here in Australia.

      Note also how this is an approved document for release to the public, and how the wording has been structured even by a Government Department to show which way they place emphasis on what they would like you to believe.

      Note that they have specifically cherry picked one day where rooftop solar power did so very well.

      Now note how they were so proud to tell you that it did so well, but, umm, not quite proud enough to brag about which actual day it was, you know, by quoting the date, and more specifically, the actual day of the week. That was oh so conveniently not mentioned at all.

      However, it’s an easy thing to actually track down and point out the absolutely misleading thing they have done here.

      Did they tell you that it was on a clear, bright, and cloud free sunny Summer’s day. Umm, well, no.

      Were they actually game enough to tell you the actual day of the week this happened, and why the differential was of such noteworthiness. Umm, well, no again.

      It was a Mid Summer’s day.

      But most of all, the fact showing how misleading this statement becomes, is that the actual day was a Sunday. And on Sundays, that’s when the total demand for anywhere is at its absolute lowest, not just here for SA, but everywhere there is a constant and regulated supply of power.

      That’s why they didn’t tell you, why they were so proud to tell you ….. ONE DAY, but, umm, not quite proud enough to tell you when.

      Now, I cannot read their minds, so I don’t know what day it actually was, and I can see the Green Blob saying that I’m just making it up as I go along.

      In their rush to make their renewable rooftop solar supporting statement, they fell into a hole that no one would be able to decipher, so that’s how they think they can get away with it.

      That hole was that they quoted the Maximum Demand for the State of South Australia, their poster child here, and that total was 1235MW.

      To prove my point here I’m directing you to the graphs shown at this link. (This is from the Wind Performance site for Australia, only these are the archives, as the graph in question does not show up at the new and improved site.)

      Now once you have opened up the link, note the date, here 1st December 2013. This is a Sunday, and being in December, is during the longest and supposed clearest of those days when Solar should be generating its maximum.

      Now, scroll down a little to the third graph, and this shows the total power demand for everywhere East of the WA border.

      Under that graph, untick every State excepting SA, and then untick the total.

      Say, note the total demand for SA at Midday (12:00) is around 1200MW.

      I can see those greenies now salivating, thinking I have cherry picked one day, just like they did, eh.

      Hey, I don’t care. I’m confident enough that any of you can search through any day and find that I’m correct in what I’m saying. Just navigate to any day you like using the date in the url address line which is by year-month-date. You even need change just the one thing here to see the point. change the 01 to 02, and that will be the Monday, a typical work day, and you’ll see that Midday demand is up beyond 1600MW, the same for virtually every working day. The only day when demand is this low is on a Sunday, when virtually all workplaces are closed, and power consumption is at its minimum.

      This is a blatant deception by the AEMO to make a point, and then hide it, thinking no one will work it out.

      Tony.

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      • #

        This subject of deception I suppose might lead to words that could be caught up in moderation, but I can’t decipher which one it is that would see the comment in moderation.

        Tony.

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    pat

    no ABC “Big Ideas” (aka “One Idea”) last nite, but a grovelling hour was given to Behm on the great Greg Combet:

    ABC Conversations: Allan Behm on the art of the political Chief of Staff with Sarah Kanowski (Richard Fidler is away for 3 months)
    Allan was Greg Combet’s chief of staff in the Defence Materiel, Climate Change and Industry portfolios.
    http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2015/07/09/4270284.htm

    BEHM: passing the carbon tax was such a great day; those wonderful Independents Oakeshott and Windsor who helped bring it in; repeal of the carbon tax the greatest folly but, post Paris Climate Summit, a carbon price will be forced on the Australian Govt (yet he ends his conversation with how the Australian public should demand what they want from the Govt…hmmm, but obviously NOT when it comes to demanding the repeal of the carbon tax?)

    previous Conversations program with a politician:

    15 June: Paul Keating talks modern political leadership

    ABC biased? never.

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    • #
      gai

      “post Paris Climate Summit, a carbon price will be forced on the Australian Govt “

      Seems that is an open admission that Australia is no longer a sovereign nation.

      100

  • #
    pat

    re ACMA ruling on Alan Jones/2GB:

    Wikipedia: ACMA
    The Australian Communications and Media Authority (the ACMA) is an Australian Government statutory authority within the Communications portfolio…
    Minister responsible: Malcolm Turnbull

    the timing of the ruling coincided nicely with -

    the mis-reporting on the Q&A story (in fact, ABC Chairman Spigelman wrote to PM Abbott that moving the program to News Division, as suggested by ABC management, had “merit” & the PM simply agreed);

    and the announcement of Turnbull’s non-appearance on Q&A next Monday, but Turnbull’s acceptance to appear on 7.30 Report instead (to speak outside his portfolio as usual? we’ll see).

    so how did Grattan headline the Q&A story:

    10 July: The Conversation: Michelle Grattan: Abbott to ABC: put Q&A under news division and ministers will return
    In the letter Spigelman wrote to Abbott, dated 9 July, Spigelman says the external review of Q&A was likely to take 15 to 18 weeks but the ABC has considered and approved management advice on changes to the operation which are outside the review.
    “One of the options under active consideration is transfer of the program to news division,” he said. “I see merit in this proposal.”…
    On Thursday the ABC released the terms of reference for the review. The reviewers will look at –

    5. Whether the responses of audiences influenced the reviewers’ perception of the program’s impartiality.Did the composition of the audience seem predictable from week to week? Should there be change to the method of audience selection.
    6. The impact of the Twitter stream running across the screen in augmenting or detracting from the overall performance of the program.
    http://theconversation.com/abbott-to-abc-put-qanda-under-news-division-and-ministers-will-return-44534

    shock jock corrects a meaningless number in two hours, but:

    ACMA: 2GB breaches accuracy requirements
    Last updated: 10 July 2015
    The segment was aired on 24 September 2013 on the Alan Jones Breakfast Show and, while the investigation report was finalised last year, publication was delayed after Harbour Radio challenged in the Federal Court the ACMA’s power to investigate and its actual findings…
    In this investigation:
    2GB conceded that the comments broadcast were inaccurate but submitted they were based on an article from mainstream media (The Australian) and that the inaccuracy was corrected by Mr Jones within TWO HOURS of the initial comments…
    Although Mr Jones purported to later correct his comments, the ‘correction’ was not adequate and appropriate in all the circumstances.
    While the ‘correction’ was flagged as a correction and made promptly, it lacked clarity. In particular, the ‘correction’:
    included additional material which was confusing and undermined the significance of the correction was not clearly linked to the incorrect statements.
    http://www.acma.gov.au/Industry/Broadcast/Radio/Radio-content-regulation/2gb-breaches-accuracy-requirements

    Fairfax news bulletins i heard on 4BC last nite did not include this story, altho they did write about it.

    ABC did include it in overnight news bulletins, but omitted to say what Jones was wrong about, so giving the impression Jones was simply wrong about CAGW in general.

    yet ABC has seemingly not documented anything on this story whatsoever – (searched online and on abc.net.au). go figure.

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  • #
    pat

    11 July: UK Daily Mail: Mark Prigg: Is a mini ICE AGE on the way? Scientists warn the sun will ‘go to sleep’ in 2030 and could cause temperatures to plummet
    New study claims to have cracked predicting solar cycles
    Says that between 2030 and 2040 solar cycles will cancel each other out
    Could lead to ‘Maunder minimum’ effect that saw River Thames freeze over
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3156594/Is-mini-ICE-AGE-way-Scientists-warn-sun-sleep-2020-cause-temperatures-plummet.html

    7 July: ChinaEconomicNet: Shanghai records lowest average temperature in 142 years
    http://en.ce.cn/main/latest/201507/07/t20150707_5860975.shtml

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    ScotsmaninUtah

    “The MET office and questions asked of them by their Government”

    I thought this might be of interest to everyone and I apologize for it being an older article, but the similarities between the Australian BoM and the British MET are entertaining to say the least :o

    Anyway it starts off by a question being asked in Parliament and the MET being asked to respond.. they refuse….
    Finally they do respond but only after 6 attempts….the quality of their answer is questioned and then real fun starts …. so to speak. :D

    Anyway the article starts here

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    • #
      PeterPetrum

      How interesting! And what perseverance. Clearly though, as all this happened more than two years ago, it has not made one jot of difference. One has to wonder who is advising our regulators and why on earth the governments of our countries (same issues in Oz) do not ensure that they have advisors who actually understand both the science and the statistics. Bob Carter would be ideal in this country. I wonder whether, behind the scenes, some of this activity is taking place. However, Greg Hunt, our Environment Minister, is either playing a very long game to fool the Green Blob, or he is part of it himself!

      30

      • #
        ScotsmaninUtah

        PeterPetrum
        I agree, and here in the US the situation is much the same with the EPA.
        Luckily here in the US the EPA has been reined in for the time being.

        However it definitely appears that “bad science” is being conducted by the government institutions “worldwide” despite the fact they were setup to advise in an unbiased” fashion.

        I am not familiar with Greg Hunt (but I was impressed by his candid comment on “bushfires”).
        As for Bob Carter he is definitely a great speaker and his comments come across as very rational.

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  • #
    pat

    novel length & UNBELIEVABLE!

    Published in the August 2015 issue of Esquire:

    Esquire: When the End of Human Civilization Is Your Day Job
    Among many climate scientists, gloom has set in. Things are worse than we think, but they can’t really talk about it.
    By John H. Richardson
    Box has been outspoken for years. He’s done science projects with Greenpeace, and he participated in the 2011 mass protest at the White House organized by 350.org. In 2013, he made headlines when a magazine reported his conclusion that a seventy-foot rise in sea levels over the next few centuries was probably already “baked into the system.” Now, with one word, Box had ventured into two particularly dangerous areas. First, the dirty secret of climate science and government climate policies is that they’re all based on probabilities, which means that the effects of standard CO2 targets like an 80 percent reduction by 2050 are based on the middle of the probability curve. Box had ventured to the darker possibilities on the curve’s tail, where few scientists and zero politicians are willing to go…
    ***For more than thirty years, climate scientists have been living a surreal existence. A vast and ever-growing body of research shows that warming is tracking the rise of greenhouse gases exactly as their models predicted. The physical evidence becomes more dramatic every year…
    Among climate activists, gloom is building. Jim Driscoll of the National Institute for Peer Support just finished a study of a group of longtime activists whose most frequently reported feeling was sadness, followed by fear and anger. Dr. Lise Van Susteren, a practicing psychiatrist and graduate of Al Gore’s Inconvenient Truth slide-show training, calls this “pretraumatic” stress. “So many of us are exhibiting all the signs and symptoms of posttraumatic disorder—the anger, the panic, the obsessive intrusive thoughts.” …
    Most of the dozens of scientists and activists I spoke to date the rise of the melancholy mood to the failure of the 2009 climate conference and the gradual shift from hope of prevention to plans for adaptation: Bill McKibben’s book Eaarth is
    a manual for survival on an earth so different he doesn’t think we should even spell it the same, and James Lovelock delivers the same message in A Rough Ride to the Future. In Australia, Clive Hamilton writes articles and books with titles like Requiem for a Species…
    INSERT LINK: We recommend: James Cameron On The Dread and Despair That Fuels Climate Change Deniers…
    No one has experienced that hostility more vividly than Michael Mann, who was a young Ph.D. researcher when he helped come up with the historical data that came to be known as the hockey stick—the most incendiary display graph in human history, with its temperature and emissions lines going straight up at the end like the blade of a hockey stick. He was investigated, was denounced in Congress, got death threats, was accused of fraud, received white powder in the mail, and got thousands of e-mails with suggestions like, You should be “shot, quartered, and fed to the pigs along with your whole damn families.” Conservative legal foundations pressured his university, a British journalist suggested the electric chair…
    Now, sitting behind his desk in his office at Penn State, he goes back to his swirl of emotions. “You find yourself in the center of this political theater, in this chess match that’s being played out by very powerful figures—you feel anger, befuddlement, disillusionment, disgust.”…
    Some of his colleagues were so demoralized by the accusations and investigations that they withdrew from public life. One came close to suicide. Mann decided to fight back, devoting more of his time to press interviews and public speaking, and discovered that contact with other concerned people always cheered him up. But the sense of potential danger never leaves…
    Meanwhile, his sense of personal alarm has only grown…
    As Mann sees it, scientists like Schmidt who choose to focus on the middle of the curve aren’t really being scientific. Worse are pseudo-sympathizers like Bjorn Lomborg who always focus on the gentlest possibilities…
    And yet, like Schmidt, Mann tries very hard to look on the bright side…
    He gets into that conversation in bars after climate conferences, always pushing the side of hope…
    http://www.esquire.com/news-politics/a36228/ballad-of-the-sad-climatologists-0815/

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    • #
      gai

      Poor, Poor Mikey sniveling and crying in his beer because he didn’t get to collapse Western Civilization.

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    TdeF

    The renewable/solar/wind/carbon industries are now so big that people will lose their jobs if they stop building useless things like Hadrian’s wall.

    It must be reminiscent of the move to stop building pyramids in Egypt. Pyramid building lasted only 200 years. Four thousand years later, no one remembered who did it or how it was done and no one could read the writing. You have to think though that there are more useful things people could do. Eventually you run out of other people’s money.

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    pat

    read all:

    8 July: Watchdog.org: Ivanpah: On track or way off the mark?
    By Rob Nikolewski
    Is it worth the expense?…
    Critics include bird lovers who point to estimates of thousands of avian deaths associated with the plant and fiscal conservatives who complain that despite a $2.2 billion price tag, which included $1.6 billion in federal taxpayer dollars in the form of a guaranteed loan, Ivanpah hasn’t gotten halfway to its electricity-generation goals.
    But now the project may face a more vexing question: Is the solar-thermal technology the plant is based on already outdated?
    “The question I have about it is, what will be the future,” asks Robert Michaels, professor of economics who studies energy markets an utilities at Cal State Fullerton University…
    The sprawling five-square mile array was designed by BrightSource Energy, is operated by NRG Energy and co-owned by Google and other investors.
    But in the time since Ivanpah was built, the costs of utility-scale photovoltaic solar — known as PV — have dropped dramatically as PV’s efficiencies have improved.
    So when it was reported data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration showed Ivanpah producing just 40 percent of its stated goal of 1 million megawatt-hours of annual electricity output, some energy analysts wondered if the promise of solar-thermal technology had already come and gone.
    Ivanpah is “already irrelevant,” scientist and energy writer James Conca wrote in Fortune in November…
    “Thermal solar is just not cost effective compared to any base load generation, and is unlikely to ever be.”
    Ivanpah officials say the 40 percent figure is misleading… READ ALL
    http://watchdog.org/225035/ivanpah-on-track/

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      Oh dear! How sad!

      Poor old Ivanpah, Concentrating Solar Power. You know, the direction of future power generation.

      It is currently working at a Capacity Factor of umm, 12%, around the same as for solar PV.

      They have to use Natural Gas (NG) each morning to get the turbines running before the solar function can make enough heat to take over, but hey, that was always supposed to be the case anyway, and I wonder how many of the general public actually knew that.

      They were supposed to run on NG for around an hour to run up each of the three custom built 130MW capable steam turbines, each turbine driving one 130MW generator.

      They are currently forced to consume up to four times that much NG before the solar element takes over.

      Sooooo, if there was no NG facility to actually start the things, then the actuality is that they would never work on solar power alone.

      So much for driving a 250MW generator by 2008, and a 500MW generator by 2012, and to do that on a full time basis with heat diversion, all that theory coming from, umm, modeling carried out in 2003. Sort of makes you look at models in a new light eh!

      They can’t even operate a 125MW turbine/Generator without NG.

      Amazing how the blind faith of the green followers fails to eventuate into something which actually works.

      To think that this plant only cost $2.2 Billion, and the power it generates each year is delivered by Bayswater in, umm, 6 days and 6 hours with all 4 units in operation.

      The way of the future ….. really!

      Tony.

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    pat

    read all:

    8 July: Watchdog.org: Bruce Parker: Utilities buy nuclear capacity from New Hampshire as Vermont dismantles nuke plant
    Utility companies in Vermont are buying nuclear capacity from New Hampshire while Vermont dismantles its former electricity-generating nuclear powerhouse…
    Since Vermont Yankee closed in 2013 — in part due to hot pressure from Gov. Peter Shumlin and the state’s renewables-minded Legislature — utility companies in the Green Mountain State have scrambled to find reliable sources for their forward-capacity needs. According to Hallquist, wind and solar power are useless as sources of capacity.
    “The problem is when you’re doing capacity you’ve got to make sure it’s there when you need it. So solar and wind, because it’s an intermittent resource, you can’t purchase it as a capacity tool. You can only purchase (it for) energy,” he said. “ISO New England has to make sure the generation is available when the load is there, and you can’t necessarily count on solar and wind for capacity, because it’s weather dependent.”
    Halquist’s company isn’t the only utility stocking up on next-door nuclear. In January, Green Mountain Power petitioned the Public Service Board for a 16-year, 150-megawatt contract purchase of nuclear from Seabrook…
    At the plant’s scheduled closing last December, (Gov Peter) Shumlin said he “long advocated for the closing of this plant.”…
    “I believe the ceasing of operations … after nearly 43 years represents a positive step for our state and our energy future. (T)hanks to investments in renewable energy such as solar, Vermont’s energy future is on a different, more sustainable path that is creating jobs, reducing energy costs for Vermonters and slowing climate change,” Shumlin said in a statement.
    But Guy Page, communications director for the Vermont Energy Partnership, a coalition that advocates for clean, low-cost electricity solutions, said recent nuclear purchases tell a different story.
    “There is a very sad irony to this situation. The source of power that had been demonized by Vermont’s energy leaders is now being embraced because it’s a decent, clean, low-cost solution to their energy problem,” he said.
    “While it’s true it’s a good deal and it’s low carbon, Vermont is not getting the jobs. Vermont is not getting the tax revenue. Vermont is not getting the incredible donor benefit of having a large generous employer in their backyard.”…READ ALL
    http://watchdog.org/227690/vermont-buying-nuclear-from-new-hampshire/

    Steyer not concerned with the above…it’s all politics to him, or is it ***business?

    10 July: New Hampshire Public Radio: Billionaire Clean Energy Advocate Visits N.H., Doesn’t Reveal 2016 Picks
    By Sam Evans-Brown
    Tom Steyer, the billionaire who poured more than $70 million dollars into an effort to make climate change a top issue in the 2014 elections, was back in the Granite State Friday…
    He toured Conner bottling works in Newington, a soda-maker which covered its roof in solar panels…
    “Why come all the way from California to New Hampshire?” he said in response to a reporter’s question during a round-table, which elicited chuckles from the crowd.
    “Other than the beautiful day, the great ***business and the charming people, is that your question?” he joked…
    Steyer’s organization, NextGen Climate has had 12 staff on the ground since April, going door to door trying to get voters interested in climate change. While he’s mum on the candidates he’ll support this time around, one thing’s clear: they’ll have to be pro clean energy.
    “There are subsidies and support for the outdated models that support the fossil fuel industry and put clean tech at a disadvantage. The limiting factor at this point isn’t technology, its politics,” said Steyer, who used the speech to prod businesses to push their representatives to take more progressive positions on energy issues…
    http://nhpr.org/post/billionaire-clean-energy-advocate-visits-nh-doesnt-reveal-2016-picks

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      The Vermont Yankee Power Plant was a 620MW single reactor BWR (Boiling Water Reactor) Plant.

      It was 40 years old when it closed. That closure was political only, as the plant was still operating very comfortably. It had a yearly Capacity Factor of 88%. In fact, the NRC (Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the U.S. Regulator for nuclear power) renewed its operational licence for a further 20 years in 2012. Due to political pressure from a Green leaning Democrat State Government, it closed down.

      It supplied 35% of the power consumption requirements for the whole State of Vermont, and in total, was 72% of all the power which was actually being generated in Vermont. Now, it’s closed, the State only generates 14% of the power it consumes, and the remaining 86% has to be imported from surrounding States, and this of itself drives up the cost of electricity to all consumers.

      Vermont electricity consumers are already paying a unit cost for electricity higher than all but one (contiguous Mainland) State.

      So, this U.S. State pays the second highest cost per unit for their electricity, 17.1 cents per KWH ….. RETAIL, and, umm, that’s just less than half what we pay here in Australia. The bulk of U.S. power comes from coal fired power, and with nuclear power added on, there’s just over 60% of all U.S. power generation. Don’t try and tell me coal fired power and nuclear power are expensive. That’s what is keeping the cost of electricity cheap in the U.S.

      Tony.

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        gai

        Oh it gets worse.

        While Duke Energy in North Carolina scuttled their plans to build another nuclear plant due to regulatory problems, they shut down the Cape Fear Coal plant. And just to make sure there was no going back — BLEW THE PLANT UP!

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S8DgZAD3y18

        To make up for the power loss Smart Meters are being forced on the citizens in the South. If you do not want a smart meter you get a new meter, supposedly not a smart meter anyway at a cost of $30/month.

        The B.S. ‘talk’ you were required to go through by the reps of the company if you refused a Smart Meter was hilarious. It was a mandatory talk to convince you all the smart meter does is read the meter and send it automatically (which the old meter did) and you really really wanted one. It was especially hilarious when I handed them all the printed material including some from Duke Energy showing they were lying. But not to worry, they just kept on lying.

        UNBELIEVABLE!

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    pat

    so much hypocrisy in the following piece…read all:

    5 July: On gas, nuclear, hydro, Vermont ducks energy problems
    MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — When Vermont became the first state to ban hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in 2012, Gov. Peter Shumlin said the ban was “in keeping with our environmental ethic and our protection of our natural resources.”
    But the state is likely on the verge of a big increase in the use of fracked gas from Canada…
    The aging Vermont Yankee nuclear plant closed in December after much cajoling by Shumlin and others. But the state is still getting significant nuclear power from the Seabrook station in New Hampshire. Its largest utility, Green Mountain Power, gets 9 percent of its mix from Seabrook, company spokeswoman Kristin Carlson said.
    Environmentalists were elated when the fishery-damaging Newport 11 dam was removed from northern Vermont’s Clyde River and they have pushed for more dam removals. But Vermont takes about a third of its power from the huge dams on the rivers of northern Quebec…
    All of it raises a question: Is greener-than-thou Vermont just exporting its energy problems?
    “We need to take responsibility for where that power comes from and we need to make sure we are meeting our environmental goals in that energy use,” Sandra Levine, senior attorney with the Conservation Law Foundation, said in an interview…READ ALL
    http://newsok.com/on-gas-nuclear-hydro-vermont-ducks-energy-problems/article/feed/859757

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      TdeF

      This is the NIMBY phenomenon. Not In My Backyard. Green Activism is about your personal position and damn everyone else. A caring group. Anyone who lives in Vermont is quite mad anyway, but that’s just a personal opinion about a state which is 75% mountain forest with an average yearly temperature of 6C. The capital has under 8,000 people. It is America’s largest producer of Maple Syrup, so it’s not all bad.

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        gai

        Given the vermont citizens LOUD GREEN cries — 86% of Vermonters support the state’s goal of getting 90% of its energy from renewable sources by 2050. Just 10% oppose the state’s goal. — I want to see Vermont do a Proof of Concept for renewables.

        No one sane builds an industrial plant or even a new product without building a pilot plant or prototype. Why are we letting Airheads revamp our entire economy without a real life trial?

        Obama wants an 83% reduction in CO2 by 2050, 30% reduction below 2005 levels in 2025 and a 42% reduction below 2005 in 2030.

        SInce Vermont is so very very green and politically correct and since their governor and Senator Bernie Sanders have been very vocally green let THEM PROVE IT WORKS!

        NO electricity from outside sources. No natural gas or oil or diesel or gasoline into the state beyond the 17% of the 2005 amount allowed to gain the 83% reduction in CO2.

        Isn’t it time we told the greens PROVE IT WORKS!

        Isn’t it time we skeptics changed tactics?

        Give them 3 years to gear up (on THEIR TAX DOLLAR) and then cut them off from carbon based energy cold turkey.

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          Roy Hogue

          They’ve no doubt done the proof of concept already. It was done the same way the concept was developed, in someone’s imagination. And the voters of Vermont seem to approve and that’s, that.

          They will, of course, fail, hurting Vermont very badly before it’s all over.

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      patrickm

      “All of it raises a question: Is greener-than-thou Vermont just exporting its energy problems?”

      Nothing new. California does the same. They ban all sorts of power plants and so import power from others states burning western coal.
      California imports more electricity (about 25% of their use) than any other state. Other states like Texas export energy.
      Limiting energy or CO2 end up being greenwashing scams.

      Similarly, Europe and their CO2 rules will export their CO2 generation to the BRIC countries by making their own heavy industry non-competitive with their CO2 rules
      and energy policies. Cheap energy is required and China and India will pick cheap over clean if the alternative means less growth.
      So by 2030, China and India and other 3rd world growing economies will have 2X the Co2 emissions of Europe as a whole.
      Makes EU policies pointless and irrelevant, (and a bad idea even if you are a AGW True Believer).

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    Bill

    Off Topic:

    Jo,
    I just read your contribution to “Climate Change – the Facts”. Very well done. Keep up the good work!
    Have you read “Global Warming – Alarmists skeptics & deniers” by Robinson & Robinson (a geoscientist looks at the science of climate change)? Very good review of the “science” etc.

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    Roy Hogue

    Is this the beginning of their chickens coming home to roost?

    I hope so. Subsidies are all that ever kept this green thing alive and able to fool so many people. When the full cost falls on the consumer, what will happen?

    Sorry for the cliche but somehow it seems to fit so well.

    Where is Margaret Thatcher when you need someone to say, “YOU’RE RUNNING OUT OF OTHER PEOPLES MONEY!”

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    • #
      Roy Hogue

      Unfortunately, “You’re running out of other peoples money,” Has been being shouted out loudly from every rooftop for a long time but no one is listening.

      I never wish anyone harm. But sometimes there’s at least a little satisfaction in seeing them get what they’ve worked hard to accomplish. Sadly it hurts so many who didn’t cause it and had no control over it.

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        Roy Hogue

        Before it’s all over and done with I may be one of those who’re hurting. California is in this mad race to prove how foolishness can replace sound analytical thinking. And if California doesn’t get me, DC probably will.

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