Who is burning coal?

As the nations meet to hammer out a new global warming deal we learn that many new coal-fired power stations are under construction or being planned around the world. I read that China is building 368 plants and planning a further 803. India is building 297 and planning 149. Rich countries are also planning new coal plants. The nuclear disaster at Fukushima has prompted Japan to turn back to coal, with 40 plants in the pipeline and five under construction. The UK is committed to phasing out coal based electricity capacity under EU directives, but this aversion to a readily plentiful and cheap fossil fuel is far from universal.

The UK needs to press on with alternative sources of energy to meet both industrial and consumer requirements at affordable prices. It neither helps us nor the world if we overprice energy here, driving more industry abroad to countries that will burn more cheaper fossil fuels.

The Climate Change conference seeks to work from what the countries offer, rather than seeking a top down set of targets and controls. This is a more realistic approach. Previous approaches have resulted in major countries refusing to be party to the world agreement at all, or failing to hit the targets set as they have proved difficult.

The conference is also talking about measures to allow adaptation. If there are changes to the patterns of weather which have an impact on communities then it makes sense as these arise to take action to prevent damage. London built a barrier to deal with tidal surges and high river levels some years ago. Some places may need better flood defences where the danger is too much water. Others may need better reserves of water and new source of supply where the danger is too little rainfall.

We can be sure our planet is never going to run out of water, given the magnitude of the oceans, but the natural water movements and rainfall patterns may not always suit current settlements without further engineering adaptation. The UK government is embarking on major programmes to tackle flooding, and the water industry needs to review the adequacy of its future supplies.

Worldwide there are changing patterns to agriculture. Some countries have damaged their soils, others can face prolonged periods without rain. There are ways to combat soil erosion, to nurture better soils, and to irrigate lands that are subject to a shortage of rain. The Dutch have long kept their country dry despite much of it being below sea level by excellence in water engineering. I hope the world conference turns to these practical measures that can ensure dry homes and a decent supply of water. One of the worst features of our world is the continued absence of proper shelter and water supply for too many people in the poor countries of the globe.

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  1. Posted December 6, 2015 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    You can hope. Meanwhile the experts at DECC have agreed and are pushing expansion of wind energy, especially deep in the middle of the North Sea, at huge cost and requiring backup from gas and US tree burning stations, which are also being built. Sorry-not the gas ones, as they are highly taxed and have to run inefficiently. The Swedes are now dismantling one of their offshore windfarms, as it wore out after 20 years. and that was it relatively sheltered waters. re renewable UK and news on google/offshore wind.

    While their other triumph is to have sold the nuclear sites to the French, with a huge loan from our natiionalised RBS and ordered the most expensive and delayed nuke in the world, with guaranteed electricity prices linked to inflation,despite the Finns and Germans choosing a half price version.- All financed by the Chinese under a new version of PFI, which the NHS is finding a little difficult.

    Not satisfied with the above, they are also about to finance a tidal reservoir and wave generation, with even worse results, and a cable to Iceland, with no likely exports back.

    And don’t forget biofuels. Ethanol produces causes high fuel consumption and 47% of corn in the US is burned, despite 99% of the energy being used to process it. While in the EU, rapeseed is grown for fuel instead of food. Big green business, with big green backers.

    But the silliest thing is that none of the above produces any CO2 savings in anything like the quantities claimed by the EU commission or DECC. The environmental impact will be undetectable.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:58 am | Permalink

      Indeed wind in the sea is intermittent, saves little or no C02 (not that that matters) and costs a fortune to install and maintain. Kill all the grants now and tax the existing ones back. It is all a giant trick to divert tax payers money into expensive nonsense.

      • Posted December 9, 2015 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

        “Costs a fortune to install and maintain”: figures, please, comparing the costs over the lifetime of an investment in coal, gas, nuclear plants. It is far too easy to just talk, talk, talk without any background justification.

  2. Posted December 6, 2015 at 5:59 am | Permalink

    What utter arrogance of politicians to imagine they can change the temperature of the planet to suit their convenience within an accuracy of 0.5 degrees C. None of
    these AGW true believers has yet explained why the current temperature levels are the optimum anyway.

    Those of us who detest everything Jeremy Corbyn stands for should listen to his brother Piers. A qualified scientist who has concluded that the global warming religion is a lot of tosh, and – miraculously – was actually allowed to say so on BBC TV the other night !

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 9:02 am | Permalink

      To start off with, they’re wrong if they think that the “temperature of the planet” can even be measured with anything like that accuracy or precision.

      • Posted December 6, 2015 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

        Well, 2014 had to be the hottest on record to prepare us for the Paris climate Conference, even if it involved substantial falsification and invention of, particularly, S.American data.

        However, satellite data could be quite accurate, presumably making use of Stefan–Boltzmann’s law in which radiation is proportional to the fourth power of the absolute temperature, thereby indicating a high degree of sensitivity as well; of course, measurements would have to be calibrated against real measured temperatures, but an ocean at night, apart from atmospheric effects, is fairly equivalent to a ‘black body’.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 4:48 pm | Permalink


      All things being equal increase CO2 concentration is likely to make it a bit warmer. But the idea that a climate catastrophe is round the corner, based on uncontrolled positive feed back loops and nonsense computer predictions is clearly an invention of yet another new Hell for yet another religion and bogus belief system.

      A bit warmer is on balance probably better on balance for humanity, certainly for crop growth and indeed precipitation.

      Margaret Beckett an ex Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affair was droning on about the the Chinese starving due to warming on any questions. Yes Dame Margaret, we know, everything will get worse if it warms and we do not pay more carbon taxes. Nothing at all will get better. The dry will get dryer, the cold colder, the wet will drown, the tall will get too tall, the short will shrink, the hard of hearing will go deaf, the short sighted will go blind, the seas will engulf the earth, we will all have to build a new arks and the hot will all burn in a new firery hell on Earth.
      etc ed

      Yet all we had to do to avoid this was pay more carbon taxes to the state sector to watch them piss it down the drain on wind farms and field of PV. Fields of PV and Biofuels do not do much for food production and food prices Margaret. But perhaps you had not noticed this!

      The green crap agenda is not only daft & misguided it is totally immoral.

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 10:13 am | Permalink

      Yes, it was interesting to hear Piers views. About the only thing he said that I would have answered differently concerned ‘peer review’ of scientific papers:

      Since the ‘peers’ doing the reviewing often have financial interest in the GW topic (eg getting research grants for their University Departments), one should not expect a disinterested viewpoint. An analogy: Would a conclave of Cardinals accept that the Protestant interpretation of Christianity was correct? I think not…

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

        References, please.

        • Posted December 12, 2015 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

          I recommend GWPF Energy Report No7 Why is wind power so expensive? by Gordon Hughes

  3. Posted December 6, 2015 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    The clever reply to Global Warming:- Antarctic ice has increased dramatically to record levels but on investigation I find ” It’s the wrong kind of ice ” . Oddly Global Warmists have decided to count ice on the land of Antarctica as “sea-ice” as opposed to “land-ice” even though it is not formed from sea water but from precipitation (rain/snow). But like everything else, those on a mission will fit the facts to freeze out opposition.

    So if the world is getting warmer why on earth is the EU spending money to keep us increasingly warmer and warmer? How bizarre to insulate our houses to keep us warm when the outside temperatures are said to be increasing. Home insulation stops our wonderful Mother Earth giving us free heat.

    The fact is there are two narratives running almost antithetically side by side . One is that winters are cold which is the dominant factor for the every increasing power of our gas and electric heating systems. And the other is that things outside are getting warmer…and we are not making any alteration in our life-styles/ heating except to the opposite. Like a man continuing to shiver through Spring and into an Indian summer insisting he needs a bigger and thicker fur coat.
    Of course, a lowering of energy usage for heating is required economically-speaking but heating and temperatures have actually increased in our homes and places of work. It is like a greenhouse in most public buildings.People have their central heating full on during winter when in the old days it took half a morning or more to get a coal fire burning and heating effectively.

    It is people who need to change…their minds….they have insulated their brains from the obvious.

  4. Posted December 6, 2015 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    Why are the poor countries poor? Dare we ask?
    How about this for a list? Far too many children. Making love is the poor man’s opera. Too many people means poverty. The land is stripped of greenery and drought results. Cattle die. Sheep graze the new shoots. But – hey – we have to eat to stay alive!
    And then there is warfare. Young men need to prove their manhood. They have always fought. That is what young men do. Now they rape and pillage with religion on their side (even though they cannot read and write and just know snatches of the Koran by heart in a foreign language in a land full of djinn).
    Try bringing education, farming, water, electricity into such a situation! And that is without the plagues. (Aids, Ebola).

    See? Global Warming is not part of the equation. But we stupidly outsource our aluminium and steel to countries which build more and more power stations that provide round the clock electricity. We forbid fracking. We set ridiculous targets. The world laughs at us as our capital, our experts and our energy are sucked out into Asia and USA.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 9:25 am | Permalink

      I wouldn’t say that high population growth necessarily leads to or perpetuates poverty, as there can be cases where the resources of the country have expanded fast enough to support the increased population and improve their lives.

      On the other hand it is a fact that there is extensive overlap between the list of the poorest countries and the list of the countries with the highest birth rates.

      There is a coloured coded map of birth rates across the world here:


      and it seems unlikely to be pure coincidence that the deeper the shade of red for a country the more likely that it is a trouble spot, and in many cases causing trouble not just for itself but for others as well.

      And I wouldn’t assume that the absence of other entertainment is a major factor in keeping birth rates high. The absence of an effective communal support system for the elderly beyond their own families may be a more important factor.

      But it could be argued that it is too late now anyway, the governments of the developed countries, and the UN, largely failed in their efforts to deal with this problem from the 1960’s onwards.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

      Mike Stallard

      Very well said. Couldn’t have put it better myself.

      Deal with the real problems and not just solutions.

      Today stood on a hill and counted over 80 turbines not turning. No doubt all turned off because either the wind was too strong or the grid could not take their combined output. If it is the latter that means £100k in constarint payments paid for by the majority of the population south of the border. Home to here on the news that some areas badly affected by flooding are relying on diesel generators.

      Still the DECC wants to keep the turbines going in and have they not yet realised that two wave projects have gone belly up up here in dictatorship Scotland and they still want to put more in?!!

      You couldn’t make it up

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

      But Obama said:-

      “No challenge–no challenge–poses a greater threat to future generations than climate change,” President Obama

      Is he A. very, very stupid, B just lying for political reasons or C just reading out the bonkers nonsense that has been written for him, like a paid actor?

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

      So readers of this blog are not permitted to see the colour-coded map of birth rates across the world published in the Telegraph recently?

  5. Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    Indeed what a lot of drivel comes out of the mouths of politicians and leaders at the Paris joke climate jamboree. Meanwhile behind the scenes Osborne/Cameron are at least finally quietly cutting the green grants that drive these parasitic, net job destroying, fake green industries but won’t admit their change of direction.

    Follow the money as Corbyn’s brother says.

    Adapt as we need to is the way to go as the climate changes – perhaps colder, perhaps warmer, perhaps wetter perhaps dryer. Climate has always changed and always will do. Green power will come if and when it is more economic and is suitable.

    The problem we have is that the state sector, the BBC, the met office, schools, politicians and academia have all convinced much of the less well informed members of the public that a climate catastrophe round the corner is proven science. Most people have not any real understanding of science and so just believe it. Having created this misdirected public group think it is hard to turn the bus arround. Just as the government and Major types all thought the ERM and EURO were great plans so could not turn around when it was clear to all they were disasters.

    Prince Charles even said 100 months to save the world in May 2009 so not long to go now. Could he not just demand quack medicine on the NHS and talk to his plants (now growing faster due to the extra CO2). I suppose he did want to be protector of faiths and see the green lunacy as just another one.

    Just listen to the drivel on the issue on Any Questions yesterday from George Monbiot, Margaret Beckett, Lord Willetts. (Monbiot was right on the bombing though the fist time I have ever heard him say anything sensible). At least Willetts had the sense to deftly switch the carbon dioxide warming issue to the polluted dirty air in China. Something which clearly does need attention but is an entirely different issue to that of CO2. CO2 is not dirty nor pollution it is largely harmless, odourless. naturally occurring plant food.

    Save these billions and do things that would make the world a better place now. Basic health care, clean water, nutrition, inoculations, birth control, flood barriers, drainages, malaria cures, fewer wars, less religion and the rest. Many of these giving more than 30 times the pay back for the cost. Whereas the carbon agenda spends money generally to cause net actual harm and destroy/export jobs.

    The green agenda is the real climate catastrophe it is totally immoral and evil.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 11:19 am | Permalink

      Burn the cheap coal and gas as cleanly as possible, forget about the clean CO2 plant & tree food and use the vast sums saved to adapt if and when needed. Also to do the sensible life saving things for the poorer countries we know work very quickly (as I list above). These things actually produce real returns rather than the real damage of the greencrap.

      So Cameron cannot even get any agreement to the pathetic none demands he has made of the EU. Can he ever be persuaded to come round the Brexit? After all he has to be right on something eventually.

      Rather like BBC favourite the Guardian’s G Monbiot on the bombing he even cam round to nuclear eventually. There is hope for these people they are just rather slow.


    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

      “At least Willetts had the sense to deftly switch the carbon dioxide warming issue to the polluted dirty air in China.”

      I hope he issued a mea culpa on behalf of the UK government of fools and traitors for forcing the Chinese to polute their atmosphere with the effluent by-products of steel and aluminium production which we have forced on them by deliberately rendering our own domestic manufacture hopelessly uneconomic by the deliberate expedient of artificially inflating the cost of electricity.

  6. Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    Off topic: Leytonstone terrorist.
    Rt Hon Mr Cameron’s armed response unit to terrorism were a tad late. Regular unarmed police officers are searching for them, no doubt worried. Just tasing.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

      Yep. 7 mins to get there is ridiculous and does not bode well. What also galls is the amount of young men who stood and watched and filmed. The Americans showed the way with flight 93 and more recently, suppressing the guy on the train. When the police tasered the terrorist he was only holding a steak knife.

      7 mins, for something called in as a possible terrorist incident by the shopkeeper.

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 3:34 am | Permalink

        I guess I’ve been watching an entirely different set of broadcasts from a multiple of domestic and foreign TV channels than your good self.

  7. Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    In defending the green crap agenda it is interesting how many of the green dopes often refer to Mrs (as she then was) Thatcher pushing the warming alarmist agenda many years ago. As if ssome how this proves the sense of it beyond any doubt.

    Thatcher was hardly infallible she signed damaging treaties with the EU, she even chose the inept John Major as chancellor and allowed him to push her into the ERM, against all the sensible advice of her ex advisor Alan Walters.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

      Very costly at the time LL, caused a huge recession that some of us lost good jobs through, however I believe this is why so many like myself woke up to the EUSSR and that it was not that little club on the corner that you never went to but didn’t mind paying a few quid through you’re council tax each year for those that wished to do so, but the Mobster Monster that it was then and is still is today.

      • Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

        Indeed perhaps joining the ERM did at least prevented us joining the EURO. Alas it buried the Tory party for 3+ terms and gave us Blair and the war on the lie. Even now we have essentially Blair in charge in all but name.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:23 pm | Permalink

      I think Mrs Thatcher must have been attracted to global warming theory as it could be used as an excuse to shut down costly coal production. I believe she subsequently came to see how the issue had been hijacked by leftists intellectually marooned after the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe.

  8. Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    You are right on water but it takes a lot of energy to desalinate water. So the water problem too is often just one needing cheap energy for desalination (or simply a few more efficient storages reservoirs as in the south of the UK).

    Engineering, physics and real science plus the market will be the solution, adapt as needed. Climate priests, green loon “experts” the state sector group think and politicians with more taxes are not. They talk as if co2 is some sort of World room thermostat and they can turn it so it keeps below 2 degrees centigrade just using co2. How deluded can you be? Climate is a hugely complex and a chaotic system. We do not even know the Suns output for next hundred years, nor volcanic activity, nor population levels, not changes in crop/plant genetics – these people are clearly bonkers.

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      “Engineering, physics and real science plus the market will be the solution”. Agreed. In what respect is the GWPF representative of one of more of these four categories? And an old question, where does this august group get its financing?

  9. Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    Yes..I notice the slip in term “adaptation” here and there, and all of a sudden. I don’t think thats going to get us off the hook that the UK Gov has got us on under law.

    Paying anything for CO2 is stupid and reflects badly on the leaders of the world.

    Adaptation? Some hopes! The sharks will be circling round that fairly soon.

    Cockermouth has water flowing in the streets…did we know about that from wayback. Is it news?

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:08 am | Permalink

      What you totally fail to appreciate is the rise in frequency of flooding. Every month anywhere north of about Manchester is liable be on some sort of flood alert.

      Places that saw floods once every 50 years are now seeing floods every other month it feels like.

      The ground in my back yard starts to dry out and bang another heavy rain event.

      • Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

        Heavy rain and flooding in the Lake District has been the norm for centuries.

        • Posted December 7, 2015 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

          Also a distinguished climatologist. You really are a specialist of everything, whoah!

          • Posted December 8, 2015 at 10:27 pm | Permalink


            This may come as a shock to you as you aren’t used to facts and evidence but you dont need to be a climatologist to look up the history of the weather, climate and natural disasters for the last 100 years , they are available to anyone who can google. Go on let go of your prejudices and try just looking up facts

          • Posted December 9, 2015 at 4:53 am | Permalink

            Well I used to live near there. Anyway just look at the countless old pictures of the floods.

      • Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:25 pm | Permalink

        Could be because of absence of river dredging (some EU rule agaist that I think), resources diverted from flood defences to subsidising windmills, and building on flood plains. Often these floods could be / could have been contained with more sensible avoidance investment.

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 5:33 pm | Permalink


        The weather/climate has changed wildly throughout the history of this planet.

        In the UK the recent flooding is absolutely nothing unusual

        Please see here a list of natural disasters to befall the UK over the years. You will notice most of the worst happened long before industrialisation/cars/planes etc

        AGW is bunkum


        • Posted December 9, 2015 at 4:57 am | Permalink

          Bunkum perhaps, but certainly catastrophic irreversible warming is an absurd exaggeration. The solutions of wind, bio fuels and pv cause far more harm than good anyway and do not even save any significant CO2.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 11:25 am | Permalink

      They “expert” soothsayers cannot reliably predict the weather for much more than a week let alone one hundred years. I just worry about all those drought loving plants people have planted after listening to the BBC Gardeners Questions Climate Propaganda on the BBC.


  10. Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:53 am | Permalink
    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:18 am | Permalink

      Neither you or the Daily Mail have ever traveled much by train. To get from most places in Scotland to London by train does not involved Birmingham. Indeed Birmingham is a detour.

      Maybe London to Birmingham does need extra capacity.

  11. Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    The biggest immediate threat is reduction of Forrest area, as those trees through photosynthesis turn the co2 we breath out back into oxygen we can breath in.
    People have lost track of that more immediate danger.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

      Iain Gill

      Interesting article here , more forest area than 100 years ago !


    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:37 pm | Permalink

      Ah Yes, Libertarian, but Sturgeon and co have found such a good replacement for trees in Scotland – wind farms. Vast areas of forest have been chopped down (during the breeding season) to make way for concrete and steel in the form of wind turbines. Today, about 88 turbines were turned off which meant constraint payments being made and yet in this same area another 150 – 200 wind turbines are planned. You couldn’t make it up!

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 5:40 pm | Permalink


        Whilst I agree on the uselessness of wind farms and their lack of efficacy on the question of forests 17% of Scotland is now Forest

        • Posted December 8, 2015 at 9:16 am | Permalink

          When you consider that Stronelairg wind farm which has just been refused by the Supreme Court was only 67 turbines and was going to take up an area the size of Inverness can you image what 99 will do? All this in an area which was planted with trees. The area of S W Scotland is being trashed for numerous large wind farms. Where there were trees there are now none! Much of the wildlife has been dispersed too.

          • Posted December 8, 2015 at 10:29 pm | Permalink


            Yes I heard what you said first time and I agreed about the uselessness of windfarms. It doesn’t alter the fact that Scotland as a whole now has more forest cover.

  12. Posted December 6, 2015 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    While climate may be changing, it is a natural function outside the control of man. It has been so for millions of years, so devise means of living with it. Burst the bubble of the strutting politicos and fellow travellers in Paris who are arrogant enough to believe they can control climate. They cannot, all they can do is mitigate the effect. They are a self serving religion preaching doom and gloom , but little in the way of viable solutions.

    It is also very important to limit the influence of existing manufacturers of energy on research for alternative sources, such as Fusion Energy. We do not want a situation where they are allowed to act in short term self interest.

    What research or engineering development is being undertaken to mitigate the downside of burning coal. We are able through ceramic filtration to eliminate the noxious and harmful from just about every industrial process so why not coal burning.

    When we come to the effect of climate change upon agriculture, gardens and golf courses, have we done enough in the UK in terms of the re-distribution of water. We still do not have a national water grid. Far more important than transporting fat cats from Birmingham to London in twenty minutes less than it takes now. Spain has a parallel problem where water distribution is blocked by parochial provincial government. Those who have an excess of it will not share it with those in need. Israel, the only democratic country in the Middle East, has shown the way by example, in terms of making the best of a difficult agricultural environment.

    The problems of the third world come from within. While the charities, an industry in themselves, beg via expensive TV advertising for our money to drill water wells and feed the destitute, the rulers of these largely African countries wallow in corruption and ignore the plight of their people. They should be pilloried in the UN every day of the week.

    Even the Pope, in all his wisdom, cannot accept that the World is over populated, and continues his opposition to birth control. It would seem he prefers the solution of wars, disease and starvation to keep the balance.

    In conclusion I would say that the climate change industry should spend less time feeding off the illusion that it is all down to man and his enterprise, and get down to producing economically viable solutions to the inevitable changes we face. If we do not we end up like the dinosaurs.

  13. Posted December 6, 2015 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    Why do we allow minority groups so much power to influence our decision making? It is abundantly clear that the louder you shout and the more aggressive you are the more that your demands and opinions are acted upon regardless of how stupid they are and how harmful to the rest of us those opinions and behaviour are.

    So it is with our approach to climate change. A small group of conservationists made up in the main of people whose intellectually stability is questionable have influenced the powerful and the influential to embark on highly expensive measure to tackle a problem that is mostly an invention of exaggerative fertile minds and/or from minds that receive financial benefits to think that way.

    What has made it easy for the eco-loons is the fact that climate change does exist it it is a natural phenomena always has been and no doubt always will be. Also the fact that we humans are an untidy, greedy and thoughtless lot and we do constant harm to our environment and to ourselves which when we wake up to the price we are paying by being so take steps to undo the damage we cause. Perhaps not quickly or efficiently enough all of the time but we eventually find the ways to do so and to prevent doing the same things in the future. It is therefore easy for eco-loons to use this to hype up their case and make a us set a course that they wish us to steer even if it is the wrong one which it is.

    Currently the Paris conference and all the conferences before and all the actions we are already taking to combat climate change is leading the most gullible, credulous and altruistic to impoverish themselves whilst the others become richer.

    Believe the eco-loons concocted flawed faux science and waste trillions on chasing phantoms or spend considerably less addressing environmental problems we create that we have absolute measurable scientific proof exist. Eco-loons science is all about maybes and crystal ball gazing and effects and causes that we cannot be certain of. That is not the bases in which to plan our current or future actions. Stop now reappraise and rethink before it is too late.

  14. Posted December 6, 2015 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    “Who is Burning Coal”

    Everyone but us, seems to be the answer !

    Whilst most other Countries appear to be building a vast number of power stations (of all types) to increase their capacity for use and power generation, we seem to be able to manage only a handful of new plants over decades.

    Why is it that all of our recent Governments want to be the seen as the so called good guys in so far as so called alternative power generation is concerned, which costs far more, and is not as reliable as traditional methods.

    Yet again we seem to have a death wish as far as power generation is concerned.

    About time we thought of ourselves for a change.

  15. Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    So what you are complaining about is that some countries are cheating.
    Of course the WTO is slow and useless and will do nothing.

    Of course in the UK try and get planning permission for any power station unless of course its for the Chinese nuclear one that is going to cost the earth. Did you vote for that expensive power?

  16. Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    Leaders who meet and believe that a climate “one size fits all” are as misinformed as the leaders of the EU believing in a politicised union . The blog very aptly describes the variances that exist around the world and the stresses that some communities face different to others .

    My 8 year old daughter pointed out to me how the population of Orangutans is dwindling away due to de-forestation also the news today of floods in the north and desperate need for water in parts of Africa are examples of why differences cannot be put together in one hat with a common solution emerging .

    Communities need to provide their own solutions and the world imbalances that do exist will tend to cancel each other out . Central views may well exist and some of the evidence may be sustainable , but controls from this source are impossible .

  17. Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    Mount Etna blew up again on Thursday, with the biggest eruption in decades. How many windmills will we have to build in the UK and how much extra should we pay on our electricity bills to counter this? I expect someone in Westminster is working on this as we speak.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

      Will the volcanic ash not cool the planet so we can burn more fossil fuel not less?

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        No. I thought that as an engineer or scientist you would know that volcanoes actually increase temperatures with the eruption and release Steam , Carbon Dioxide, Sulphur Dioxide,Hydrochloric Acid, Carbon Monoxide and many others.

        Anyway, my main point was that man is puny compared to nature. Perhaps irony doesn’t work well on the page.

        • Posted December 7, 2015 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

          They can have either effect it seems depending on the exact emissions but:-

          It seem by far the more substantive climatic effect from volcanoes results from the production of atmospheric haze. Large eruption columns inject ash particles and sulfur-rich gases into the troposphere and stratosphere and these clouds can circle the globe within weeks of the volcanic activity. The small ash particles decrease the amount of sunlight reaching the surface of the earth and lower average global temperatures. The sulfurous gases combine with water in the atmosphere to form acidic aerosols that also absorb incoming solar radiation and scatter it back out into space.

          So given the volcanic activity is unpredictable as is solar activity and countless other influences (with any precision) how can they claim to predict the climate in 2115?

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 9:25 am | Permalink

      LL, typical residence time of volcanic plume following an eruption is around two years.

  18. Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    Perhaps the kindest thing that can be said about some of the more extreme elements in the green lobby is that they are well-meaning but lack common sense.

    However they have got their foolish ideas embedded in international treaties, providing a legal route to impose their folly on the rest of us irrespective of any dissenting views of the British electorate as supposedly represented in our national Parliament.

    So, one of the many legal changes brought about by the Lisbon Treaty was the addition of the words “and in particular combating climate change” at the end of what is now Article 191.1 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, here:


    “Union policy on the environment shall contribute to pursuit of the following objectives …. promoting measures at international level to deal with regional or worldwide environmental problems, and in particular combating climate change.”

    A provision that was highlighted, and applauded, by some advocates of the treaty.

    I don’t see the removal or dilution or qualification of that commitment to “combating climate change” – change which may not even exist to anything like the extent that some claim, let alone be attributable to any human activity as they also claim – on the list of EU reforms being demanded by our Prime Minister in his “renegotiation”.

  19. Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    I dip into the Hadley Centre’s temperature stats from time to time and was amused to see that since my last ‘dip’ the temperatures since 2000 have all miraculously increased by half a degree. This says more about their attempts to fool the public than it does about their scientific prowess.
    Look, Climate Change has always been political, ‘strewth if (global warming campaigners ed) can make a few million bucks from it that’s proof enough. Americans can’t stand China and India nibbling away at their prime position as largest economy. America is still one of the largest CO2 emitters per capita anywhere on the planet, caused by their love affair with the car and their heavily industrialised economy. Of course they want to slap constraints on China and India. What have they done to reduce their own emissions ?

    But why the UK needs to commit economic suicide by wholesale closure of coal-fired power stations, building wind farms all over the place that everyone knows are useless in high wind and no wind conditions, giving the French and Chinese huge deals to build our nuclear plants, and messing about with energy taxes that hurt domestic and industrial consumers alike, this really is as crazy a religion as we’ll ever see.

    You can’t beat nature – Keswick, Cockermouth and Hawick are evidence of that today. Mount Etna and Chennai last week. The Somerset levels a year ago. Hurricanes and Typhoons throughout the year. So accept it, adapt to it, accept that, whether CO2 levels are man-made or not, shit happens and we must not clobber our economy when no-one else is prepared to. If Germany can build new coal-fired power stations (using some carbon capture technology no doubt) then so can we, and add those to new fracking plants that we should have started years ago.

  20. Posted December 6, 2015 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    No mention of Germany in your list of new coal fired plants. Not only coal but lignite
    The dirtiest fuel known to man.
    Of course what Angela wants Angela gets. Nothing must get in the way of their industrial might. etc ed
    Only the good old UK will roll over and de – industrialise in the name of specious science.
    I heard some idiot on the BBC saying all power generation will be renewable by 2030. These new stations being built have a 50 year life.

  21. Posted December 6, 2015 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    We need to start being sensible about our energy costs which reflect on our businesses. Here is just another example of a ‘green’ energy company going bust and owing the Scottish government millions. Wave power is going to be expensive and it would seem that the products used only last 2 years!! What idiot thought this would ever be cost effective?


    Scotland is losing its large gas fired power station next year, they have two aging nuclear plants, they are converting power stations to burn wood and have plastered half of Scotland with useless wind farms. They are a threat to the energy security of the nation.

    You are right to highlight how many countries are going to continue using cheap coal while we ditch ours. This will be to the detriment of our industries and will further harm people’s health when they are unable to heat their homes properly. Yes, we may be having a warm winter at the moment but as we know, mother nature changes her mind as and when she likes and a cold spell is enough to kill off quite a few elderly or infirm people. We have to get back to a sensible energy policy and scrap the Climate Change Act. Merkel is using coal and we should be able to too.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

      1) Peterhead Power station (GAS) is alive and well and contracted to provide back up power when the wind does not blow. Yes there is an odd day when the gales stop.
      I can’t remember the last quiet day.

      It is the old coal station at Longannet that is being closed.

      2) Wind farms are at their best in Scotland as it is the windiest part of the UK (and EU).

      3) Offshore wind has more benefits than onshore wind.

      Fracking anybody?

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 8:34 am | Permalink

        Agree that I cannot remember the last quiet day in Scotland but that often means that too much wind power is being produced and so they have to be shut down and constraint payments are made. There are many days when wind turbines are not turning in our area even with moderate winds due to the fact the grid has enough power. This is costing millions in payments for doing nothing and yet we are to be lumbered with more turbines in the near future. What is the point when the system can’t cope with what they have now? Fracking wouldn’t bother me in the least. At least it would mean stable power and could result in the UK not having to import gas. Our energy infrastructure is a mess.

        • Posted December 7, 2015 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

          See amounts for constraint payments by date for wind farms in Scotland yesterday here.


          I can see Hadyard Hill and Arecloech from my property and my friend can see Whitelee from hers. Both costing us mega as normal. They get shut down almost on a daily basis at some point of the day.

  22. Posted December 6, 2015 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    While I don’t agree with Jeremy Corbyn, his brother Piers, a scientist makes a lot of sense regarding so called climate change. There is provision within the Climate Change Act to reconsider and change tact according to any new science or other new found data regarding the weather. Link below to the programme and interview with Andrew Neil.


    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

      Yes, and it is a shame that even the Daily Mail does not take Piers Corbyn seriously enough to buy his weather forecasts, they prefer to take them from NetWeather.tv, which roughly just amalgamates various European, North American, and Asian forecasts.

  23. Posted December 6, 2015 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    Some MP or other has on the BBC indicated it is “dangerous” for people to say that the Syria vote can account for increased terrorist activity in the UK.

    If any government in this world voted to attack my country (UK) and did, I would not wait for anyone’s permission slip to hit them as hard as I could, anywhere I could by whatever means came readily to hand and I would not wait to see if any of my countrymen agreed or not. Beyond debate. The BBC and MPs should get real.

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

      Indeed it is surely true that the dangers of terrorist attack are indeed higher but this alone is not sufficient reason not to bomb.

      The reason not to bomb however is that it will surely cause far more harm than good, there is no sensible plan for the peace.

  24. Posted December 6, 2015 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

    The UK is phasing out coal and heavy industries to limit CO2 emissions…but then why is it acceptable that 250,000 new homes are to be built every year to accommodate an exponential increase in population ?.

    Do not all these extra homes have oil and gas fired boilers and electric water heaters that spew out CO2. Furthermore they all need water supplies that are in short supply in some areas. It’s odd that the Green party and other lefties are so in favour of mass immigration when it is damaging for the environment.

    Furthermore these extra people will need transport which will mean more cars and buses.

    Dr Redwood – is the EU cap imposed on CO2 emissions linked to population?.

    Reply Good point. We are not given credit for taking more people.

    • Posted December 8, 2015 at 10:51 am | Permalink

      My reply seems to have been filed in your bin old boy. Poor form the references could have been edited off if they were objectionable.

      Reply I do not always have time to check all these references. Please write in your post what you want to say.

    • Posted December 8, 2015 at 11:40 am | Permalink

      With this logics, will Germany having accepted one million migrants in a year be allowed to pollute 200 times more yuan the UK accepting 5000 per year for four years?

  25. Posted December 6, 2015 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    In all the years I have been hear and been to the coast for a visit, I have not seen a visible change in the sea level and with the reports of glacier melting and the north pole sea ice has reduce in my time, I would of thought I had of seen something by now.
    I am not saying it cannot happen, I am just saying I have not noticed it.

    I am more concerned about ground level emissions from vehicle, it makes everything dirty and bad for your health, with more and more vehicle coming on to the roads every year because immigration and need to build more housing, roads and with the on set on fracking you are going to need thousands and thousands more vehicle running around which is going to take years off your life, It might look great on paper for the treasury and companies but you will not see a lot of it and gas will not be cheaper and in fact it going cost the country more than 200 billion in debt which you will not get back.

    If you think you have a traffic problem now you haven’t seen anything yet when millions of more vehicle hit the roads and slowly gas you, still at leased the MPs and they families will be dying as fast as you. I am going to call it little china, sitting traffic jams all day.

  26. Posted December 6, 2015 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

    The Global Warming Hoax should be treated with the contempt that such pseudo-scientific humbug deserves. It is well known that this movement is a criminal conspiracy by those who control the UN to push for world government by the creation of a framework of supranational law whilst at the same time, destroying the advanced economies of Europe by forcing them to generate electricity, both uneconomically and unreliably. It is no surprise that the EU has embraced this scam with energy and relish since it fits their own treacherous agenda like a glove. Those ‘experts’ who have been pushing this nonsense deserve to spend the rest of their lives in prison.

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

      A shame that the UK has not a more proportional voting system and makes it so difficult for extremist parties to have a voice. Look at France, the National Front is making more way with every election. We clearly need such a similar voting system to get this type of parties here in the UK to accommodate people like you.

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 10:27 pm | Permalink

        Only buffoons believe that the global Warming Hoax is a left/right,
        extreme left/Extreme right issue; it is about science and the perversion of science to achieve a political end. The fact that you yourself are either a perpetrator or believer in this hoax is neither here nor there as far as I’m concerned.

  27. Posted December 6, 2015 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    Nuclear power is constantly derided for being unsafe – mainly by greenies and the media – but unfortunately the message appears to be pervasive with no regard to the facts.

    The Fukishima nuclear ‘disaster’ is a case in point – “It is the largest nuclear disaster since the Chernobyl disaster of 1986 and the second disaster (after Chernobyl) to be given the Level 7 event classification of the International Nuclear Event Scale.”
    Reading the headlines you would think that thousands or at least many hundreds of people died in this enormous disaster. The truth is – not one single person died. Can there be a better example of the safety of nuclear power? Bear in mind that the Fukishima nuclear plant was built in 1966, making it one of the oldest in existence, and nuclear power safety has been massively improved since then.

    • Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:09 pm | Permalink


      Totally agree, and according to the UN W.H.O. the worst nuclear disaster ever Chernobyl the total loss of life was 54. People have no understanding about nuclear energy and radiation. Ive seen reports of 100,000’s of deaths from Chernobyl by the simple expedient of attributing ever cancer and leukaemia death as due to the radiation which is total nonsense.

      More people have died in coal mines, more people have died in oil fields and in fact more people have died as the result of accidents with wind turbines than in nuclear power accidents

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 11:52 am | Permalink

      Merc. Unless your relations are Ukranian and tended the fire at Chernobyl, your beliefs may be unfounded. The lack of iodine was the main cause of child cancer according to a very interesting lecture on Utube by Prof Wade Allison. Anyone who thinks small amounts of radiation, or even quite large amounts, will kill us should listen to him.

      Anyone thinking about whether to undergo radiotherapy and understand how the levels and distribution works may also be reassured slightly, despite levels being thousands of times higher than those used to decide evacuation of Fukushima.

      The lectures are:-

      Why radiation is safe and all nations should embrace nuclear. Allison and
      Radiation and reason, re thinking radiological protection.
      The comments in the blog under this one are interesting, with the usual hysterical green personal attacks and one by Philip de Groot, who explains using reason, and gets nowhere.

      Presumably, Mrs Merkel hd not read his book when she had another of her moments and cancelled the whole well designed nuclear programme.

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

      He is talking of Fukishima though.

  28. Posted December 6, 2015 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    Indeed tackle these problems with some basic sanitation, irrigation, medical care and clean water and stop pissing the money aways on PV and Wind.

  29. Posted December 6, 2015 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

    Good point john, do you think you should have vote on this site to see if the people think that the FOI should given a medal or knighthood for increasing the population on this island and if you can increase it by a million a year a extra bonus of 25 million each tax free.

  30. Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    Environmental leftists are circulating a petition to keep ‘Big Oil”s lobbyists out of the Paris conference. What about Big Green – should their lobbyists be allowed?

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

      Ever realised that the big oil and utility lobbies have been part and parcel of all the so-called climate discussions since 1992?

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

        I don’t doubt there is lobbying by ‘Big Oil’, but can you deny there isn’t by Big Green (all those companies, NGOs, ‘charities’, researchers, journalists, agitators etc who derive their raison d’etre and probably a large part of their income from state revenues driven by official fear of global warming)? I don’t particularly object – I’d like a proper debate. But I don’t see why one sides lobbyists should be excluded and the other’s welcomed.

        • Posted December 8, 2015 at 9:53 am | Permalink

          I certainly agree that there is pressure from “green” groups. But whether NGOs like Greepeace, Friends of the Earth, Sierra Club, … or the wind, solar and other renewable energy companies have as much weight in the negotiations than the 56 private companies official sponsors of the COP21 (banks like BNP, supermarkets like Carrefour, energy companies like EDF, ERDF, Engie, airlines like AirFrance/KLM, car manufacturers like Renault, and others, Google, L’Oreal, Michelin, Ikea, Orange, …) is really to be debated.

          As things appear to be going, the handling of “climate change” by COP21, if not good for the Australian mining industries, is likely to be quite good for other aspects of business.
          Maybe it is time to reconsider the balance of various sectors in one’s retirement portfolio.

  31. Posted December 6, 2015 at 10:35 pm | Permalink

    I know its a bit off topic but will you be blogging on airport runways this week?

    • Posted December 7, 2015 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

      More delay it seems. One at Gatwick and one and Heathrow and a 15 min HS train shuttle link is what is needed. Some should be open all night too get on with it.

      • Posted December 7, 2015 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

        The best of it is extra runways would cut CO2 emissions as planes would not be flying round the stacks for ten minutes.

  32. Posted December 7, 2015 at 4:46 am | Permalink

    Below is Wikipedia’s summary of clean coal technology. Is it not time that the ‘international community’ made it obligatory that all coal power stations should be clean coal power stations. Perhaps it is time that we imposed import taxes on those countries that burn dirty coal. And it is worth pointing out that zero world population growth would help in getting emissions under control, not least by making available land on which to grow trees.

    “Clean” coal technology is a collection of technologies being developed to mitigate the environmental impact of coal energy generation.[1] When coal is used as a fuel source, the gaseous emissions generated by the thermal decomposition of the coal include sulphur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), carbon dioxide (CO2), mercury, and other chemical byproducts that vary depending on the type of the coal being used. These emissions have been established to have a negative impact on the environment and human health, contributing to acid rain, lung cancer and cardiovascular disease. As a result, clean coal technologies are being developed to remove or reduce pollutant emissions to the atmosphere. Some of the techniques that would be used to accomplish this include chemically washing minerals and impurities from the coal, gasification (see also IGCC), improved technology for treating flue gases to remove pollutants to increasingly stringent levels and at higher efficiency, carbon capture and storage technologies to capture the carbon dioxide from the flue gas and dewatering lower rank coals (brown coals) to improve the calorific value, and thus the efficiency of the conversion into electricity. Figures from the United States Environmental Protection Agency show that these technologies have made today’s coal-based generating fleet 77 percent cleaner on the basis of regulated emissions per unit of energy produced.[2]

    Clean coal technology usually addresses atmospheric problems resulting from burning coal. Historically, the primary focus was on SO2 and NOx, the most important gases in causation of acid rain, and particulates which cause visible air pollution and deleterious effects on human health. More recent focus has been on carbon dioxide (due to its impact on global warming)[3] and concern over toxic species such as mercury.[4] Concerns exist regarding the economic viability of these technologies and the timeframe of delivery,[5] potentially high hidden economic costs in terms of social and environmental damage,[6] and the costs and viability of disposing of removed carbon and other toxic matter.[7][8]

  33. Posted December 8, 2015 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    But we are constantly told the world will end if we do not reduce CO2 to very low levels so the use of nuclear generated power is the only solution unless we go back to a pre industrial society life style.
    But thanks for the doomsday warning.

  34. Posted December 8, 2015 at 9:45 am | Permalink


  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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