Greenpeace and Arithmetic

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Greenpeace and other environmental groups have recently expended a great deal of energy trying to get the UK to commit to de-carbonizing the UK electricity grid by 2030. This hoped for target was for, on average, 50 g CO2 to be produced per kWh of electricity, which the government has decided to not include in its energy bill.

Instead of going over the debate over whether a target is a good idea, let’s instead consider whether the government would be wise to follow Greenpeace’s overall policy prescriptions. I’ll simplify these to three policies: the UK has a legally binding target of 50 gCO2 /kWh for electricity, no nuclear power plants, and no CCS power plants by 2030. So, how do we get to 50 g CO2/kWh in such a scenario? Read the rest of this entry »

Is London going to be fracked?

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‘Fracking’ exploration could affect 60 per cent of UK

A rather frightening headline in today’s Independent. John Sauven, Greenpeace executive director, makes it clear that this claim is not simply a piece of idiocy from a sub editor at the Independent:

Two thirds of England, including large swathes of countryside, is now under active consideration for a risky, polluting, expensive form of fossil fuel extraction. Read the rest of this entry »