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They are idiots, aren’t they?

Proposed new UK oil and gas fields would provide at most three weeks of energy a year
Experts and former ministers have also said the developments would not reduce energy prices in the UK

Global prices would fall by some amount. Therefore UK prices would too. That’s just obvious.

The more important point here thought is, well, given winter clod spells and windlessness in them, isn’t three weeks a year about what we need battery power to cover?

And natural gas would be markedly cheaper than trying to build 3 week’s worth of actual batteries…..

18 thoughts on “They are idiots, aren’t they?”

  1. “ Experts and former ministers…”

    Ah. Following The Science™️ no doubt – such a good track record.

    Such prescience and omniscience too knowing how much oil & gas there is and what its rate of extraction might be.

  2. I sneeze in threes

    They are happily ignoring that it would be economically productive, generating profits, giving employment and also various taxes to UK Government.

  3. And it would make sure that when the foul foreign fiends cut off your oil and gas (or you sanction them), you’d still have some available.

  4. Nice try Tim. But just pissing into the wind.
    My contention is this thing has always been political. It starts with politics with a small “p”. A bunch of “climate scientists” wanting to get funding for their “research”. And became a bandwagon that politicians, business interests & yes, some economists (your hero Stern) have climbed up on. The whole thing now is about vested interests. You’re not going to fight that with simple economic arguments.
    What’s needed is a different tactic. I’d go for the vested interests. “Experts & former ministers…” (Gummer again?). Which experts & former ministers? What are they getting out of it?
    The climate change industry plays on the public’s fears. There’s a far stronger emotion than fear. That’s anger. What’s needed is to inspire anger about what these people are making out of the fear they’ve contrived. Do that & you could bring the whole house of cards down.

  5. They are indeed idiots. The existing fields aren’t going to be shut down overnight and they produce 50% of our consumption. So we get 29 weeks of autonomy rather than 26. Not to mention fields which haven’t been “proposed” yet, or the Bowland Shale.

  6. And natural gas would be markedly cheaper than trying to build 3 week’s worth of actual batteries…..

    Yes, way cheaper even though the natural gas market is much more expensive than it needs to be because it’s forced by government to fill in for the failures of renewables.

    Nobody should be allowed to supply the grid unless they can supply 24-7-52. It should be up to the renewable companies to provide and pay for their backup. Then we’d see the true cost of renewables and adopt (or not) accordingly.

  7. @PJF
    And make the “green” electricity providers either cut off their customers’ leccy when the wind doesn’t blow or make them send out emails informing the customers that their supply is coming from nasty old coal, nuclear or gas so that they can cut themselves off.

  8. They are indeed idiots.
    Never ever give your enemy the advantage of you thinking he’s a fool. Especially when he’s winning.

  9. To be fair, any global energy price drop from a few more UK fields would be very small. So that’s not really a convincing argument.

    More to the point, if energy prices rise, the UK benefits from having its own oil and gas production (at least in so far as it makes us less of a net importer). High energy prices suck for households and manufacturers, among others.

    But high energy prices also suck for households and manufacturers in Saudi. Nevertheless, people in Saudi are, net, better off if energy prices are high. Because they also have a large extractive industry which seriously benefits from high energy prices. Up to the government to sort out how or if those who feel the pain should be compensated by those who feel the gain, but to an extent that happens naturally, as taxes on oil and gas production will rise, and as a result there’s lower taxes or higher spending that benefits households.

    In the UK, we’d be net worse off if energy prices are high since we’re a net importer of energy, but we’d be even poorer, collectively, if we imported more of our energy. Therefore if we have commercially viable fields, we’re better off to make use of them rather than import from others, even if this doesn’t have much effect on global energy prices.

  10. Anon

    I’ve just recently noticed the Saudis whining to OPEC+ yet again about how they have to reduce their production to keep up prices. So at least producing more would screw those bastards.


    ‘Nobody should be allowed to supply the grid unless they can supply 24-7-52. It should be up to the renewable companies to provide and pay for their backup. Then we’d see the true cost of renewables and adopt (or not) accordingly.’


  11. Nobody should be allowed to supply the grid unless they can supply 24-7-52.

    Much, much, too stringent, PJF. The Load-Duration curve looks like a typical “S-curve” lying on its back. There is a really sharp peak to maximum demand, which may last five to twenty or thirty hours out of 8,760 in the year. The drop between (say) the two-hour peak and ten-hour is almost vertical – the curve gradually flattens out over the next 8,500 or 8,600 hours, and then starts to drop steeply to the absolute minimum load, which may also be twenty or so hours. Imposing a 100% deliverability requirement dramatically over-capitalizes generation – you pay for capacity that is never used. Dispatchable supply with a guaranteed capacity factor is a much more sensible requirement.

    That said, congratulations on getting 24-7-52 right – most people show their lack of thought by demanding 24-7-365 supply. 🙂

  12. I wonder if our supermarkets would entertain this:
    “My orchard can provide 100 pounds of apples a week. Sometimes. Can’t guarantee it. Some weeks there’ll be 100 pounds, some weeks there won’t be any. Some weeks there’ll be 200 pounds. You’ll have to pay me when I do supply 100 pounds, when I don’t supply 100 pounds and when I supply 200 pounds you’ll have to pay me extra to get rid of the additional 100 pounds”.

  13. James

    Oddly enough, renewable electricity is cheaper than everything else right now!!

    Strangely though, we’re still paying more.

  14. In 5 years time battery storage will be cheaper

    Is that using the same meaning of “year” as everyone telling us fusion power will be online in 20 years?

  15. @ James
    Gas cheaper than batteries – Yes.
    That graph is a *forecast* based on assumptions about massive improvements in battery costs, about zero transmission losses, assuming that the peak-relieving gas plants are each used less than 10% of the time because peak demand occurs simultaneously across the five time zones in the USA (in the electric future they will still be used less than 25% of the time). Obviously the numbers don’t work in favour of batteries if you allow the gas plants to sell power into other time zones.

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