Friday, October 20, 2006

Energy supplies - anything but self-sufficiency for Blair and co.

As the EU leaders gather in Finland to discuss energy security, Blair has written a letter to them all urging that they must act now to avoid catastrophic climate change.

Of course, Mr Blair has no evidence to support that assertion, because no evidence exists - but it makes good headlines. So the EU cartel will no doubt talk long and hard about reducing carbon emissions while munching through several courses of lunch and quaffing several glasses of wine. Then they'll all retire to their limos and accompanying convoy of vehicles, speed off to the airport to jump aboard a virtually empty aeroplane and fly home to tell their disgracefully profligate citizens that they must suffer more to save the world.

Also on the list of topics - and a subject that Liam Fox, the Conservative "defence" spokesman, recently made a video about - was energy security. You see, the big problem for the west is that we get most of our energy from - how would you put it? - "difficult" suppliers. Namely the Middle East and Russia. We don't get along particularly well with either and they are not adverse to using energy supply as a "bargaining" tool. I.e. - do what we tell you or we'll cut off supplies.

The thing is, Blair, Fox and everyone in Britain is quite happy to address the issue of energy security without ever looking at the idea of becoming largely self-sufficient in energy supply. Oh, I know they talk blithely about "wind" and "waves", but they are never going to provide us with all our energy requirements - unless we go back to using candles and cooking on open fires. Interestingly, they refer to nuclear energy as "the last resort".

Never, ever mentioned is the one source of energy which we can guarantee the supply of, is plentiful and readily extractable.


Britain has a thousand years of known coal reserves, but no one likes coal because it is "dirty". But clean coal technology has come a long way and is improving the viability of coal as energy resource all the time. Isn't it about time we started to rethink our strategy for coal - before we find ourselves in the grip of a fierce winter with the gas supplies turned off by Russian demands.

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