When is the rest of the Western world going to catch up with Donald Trump and point out that the green emperor is wearing no clothes?
I ask as a concerned UK taxpayer absolutely sick to death of the vast sums of money that continue to be funneled into the pockets of crooks, liars, spivs, chancers, con-artists and fantasists in the name of solving the non-existent problem of “climate change.”
Let me give you some examples of what I mean.
Wales’s £18 million tidal energy flop
If there’s one thing, everyone who thinks of themselves as reasonable and well-informed knows, tidal power is the thing. How do they know this? Well, because they’re aware that the wind and solar power have their flaws but their hearts tell them that renewable energy must be a good thing because it’s clean and it’s free so therefore they’ve decided to pin their hopes on the technology whose crispness hasn’t been tested yet – and that means tidal.
Also, they’ll have read thinly-disguised press releases like this article First full-scale tidal generator in Wales unveiled: Deltastream array to power 10,000 homes using ebb and flow of the ocean and gone: “Well they wouldn’t print stuff like that unless it were true, would they?”
But now, surprise surprise, this tidal project – subsidized to the tune of £8 million by the European Union, with another £500,000 from the Welsh government – is lying in ruins on the Pembrokeshire seabed because the company that ran it – Tidal Energy Ltd – has gone into administration. It failed after just three months of operation.
This is a problem all too familiar with so many projects in the renewable energy sector: see also Solyndra and Abengoa, for example. Because the unreliable, expensive power they produce is not commercially viable, they fold as soon as the government subsidies dry up. But we’re not supposed to mind about public money being squandered in this way because, hey, it’s green and the intentions were good.
Northern Ireland’s £1 billion Renewable Heat Incentive disaster
In 2012, in order to boost renewable energy usage, the Northern Irish government hit on the brilliant scheme of subsidizing businesses to the tune of a £160 rebate for every £100 they spent on fuels, such as wood pellets, burnt in biomass boilers. Naturally, every business with any sense piled in to grab a piece of this free money.
As the Times(£) reports, this had unintended consequences:
Flaws in the scheme were exposed by a whistleblower who said businesses were buying biomass boilers solely to collect the subsidy. The whistleblower alleged that one farmer expected to make £1 million over 20 years for using a biomass boiler to heat an empty shed, while heating a number of empty factories would net their owner £1.5 million.
Northern Ireland’s auditor-general, Kieran Donnelly, says the RHI had “serious systemic weaknesses from the start” because it did not have the built-in spending controls imposed on a similar scheme in Great Britain. He added that the scheme was vulnerable to abuse and possible fraud.
Now taxpayers face a bill of over £1 billion, £490 million payable by Northern Ireland, the rest of taxpayers in England, Scotland and Wales.
The great £216 million anaerobic digester scam
Anaerobic digesters are machines that turn crops into fuel, by converting agricultural waste into methane which is fed into the national gas grid. This is a very expensive way of producing energy – and just the sort of thing Jonathan Swift was satirizing three centuries ago when his Academy of Laputa in Gulliver’s Travels devised schemes to extract sunbeams from cucumbers.
But in the anaerobic digester case, a gullible British government – the useless Cameron/Clegg Coalition to be specific – actually decided that sunbeams from cucumbers was such a good idea that they’d massively subsidize it through the Renewable Heat Incentive. Naturally, like cockroaches to a rotting carcass, the usual rent-seekers – among them wind turbine developer Dale “Dog On A Rope” Vince have piled in to take advantage of all that free money.
But as David Rose has reported, the Anaerobic Digester business is yet another dodgy eco-scam. First, there’s not enough agricultural waste to fuel these machines, so instead crops – such as eco-unfriendly maize – are being grown specifically to provide fuel them. A government report has described this as “not a cost-effective means of biomethane production.” No, indeed. Methane gas produced in this way costs three-and-half times as much as that from fossil fuel sources.
On top of this, these AD industrial plants can be highly polluting – both in the form of increased traffic (just one project by Dale Vince’s Ecotricity will involve 12,792 extra “vehicle movements” per year in a hitherto tranquil rural area) and in the form of leaks, like the one that contaminated 70 acres of this farmer’s land. Oh, and it can also cause explosions like the one that blew up a containment tank at Harper Adams agricultural college two years ago.
Wind turbine sickness
Seven families from Banteer, N. Cork in Ireland are set to win a multi-million Euro landmark court ruling in an out-of-court settlement in a long-running case against a German wind turbine manufacturer. They sued because of the damage done to their health by the infrasound and low-frequency noise produced by the wind turbines sited near their homes.
This scandal has been simmering for years. I have been reporting since 2012 on the damage to human and animal health caused by wind turbines. But the renewables industry – worth an annual $300 billion – has many powerful vested interests and has persistently sought to cover its tracks with threatening legal letters, gagging clauses, and lavishly funded propaganda by industry trade bodies.
What’s significant about this Irish case is that it now sets a global precedent for further legal action around the world. If I were an investor, I seriously wouldn’t want to be exposed to the wind industry right now: it could face class actions as heavy as the one against Big Tobacco. Although I have no control over the investment strategy of my hedge fund CoolFutures, one of the things I hope it will be doing is shorting wind turbine shares.
I once got into trouble with Australia’s incredibly politically correct press complaints commission for quoting a sheep farmer who described wind farm developers being as bad as pedophiles. I would hereby like to apologize to pedophiles for any offense that may have been caused by this disgusting analogy.