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Energy policy – a rich seam of stupidity


LEADERS across the West are rapidly discovering that basing their energy policies on the mutterings of a modern child saint was a bad idea.

Germany and the Netherlands, having made themselves increasingly reliant on external energy sources in an attempt to appease the climate gods, have suddenly realised that the lights might soon be going off amid sanctions and shortages.

The Germans, after an earthquake on the other side of the world, unilaterally shut down many of their nuclear power stations, leaving them desperate for Russian gas. Of the 17 nuclear plants Germany had before the Fukushima nuclear accident in 2011, three remain in operation, and these are due to be shut down by the end of the year.

The Dutch, sitting on top of the largest natural gas field in Europe, are trying their best to stop extraction at the site. Much better to import it from elsewhere than to control your own fate. In 2018 the Netherlands became a net gas importer for the first time since the 1950s as it wound down domestic production.

Now the Dutch and the Germans are burning coal: that nasty source of reliable energy. Even more deliciously, Germany is burning brown, highly polluting coal – the favoured energy source of the German Democratic Republic and the lowest grade of coal owing to its meagre heat potential.

Let us not begrudge the move. It features as a rare moment of sanity amid a tsunami of idiocy of our government’s own making. One only wishes that the United Kingdom could do the same. For our return to using coal is troubled by the fact that, in its wisdom, the government has been happily blowing up our coal-fired power stations as recently as March this year. Only three coal-fired plants are left and they are all due to be closed within two years.

Given that we have vast reserves of high-grade coal under our feet, minds not fully in thrall to masochistic green madness might argue that keeping a number of coal plants open to provide a stable, domestically fuelled power supply would make sense.

Naturally, despite having enough of the black stuff to secure our energy independence, we became a net coal importer in 2004. No prizes for guessing where the majority of our imported coal comes from (hint: it’s Russia).

Energy is one of those areas where the more you read, the less it makes sense. Our elites have played fast and loose with the most fundamentally important sector of our economy. During the Industrial Revolution, it was the abundance of energy provided by fossil fuels which enabled mankind to drag itself out of the hardships of pre-industrial life.

In the headlong rush to axe fossil fuels from our energy mix – before the technology was ready and in spite of the clear economic self-harm it would cause – Western elites have shown their hand. Whether their intentions were good (to save the planet) or ill (to drive us into modern feudalism), their all-round, stunning ineptitude has demonstrated beyond all doubt that the current crop of incompetents have got to go. 

This appeared on Frederick’s Newsletter on June 23, 2022, and is republished by kind permission.

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Frederick Edward
Frederick Edward
Frederick Edward is from the Midlands. You can see his Substack here.'

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