From the Editor: The realities of wind power and other so called green energies are finally being discussed. It’s about time. The reality of energy is that it must be as clean as possible but at the same time it must be cost effective. Wind and most other so called renewable energies are not. Without a cost effective energy system industry is put at risk. When industry is a risk so is the entire economy. Energy is too important an issue to be driven by what the govt thinks is a popular choice of the electorate. We need those in govt. that understand energy, to speak out just like Mr. Cash.
We need real energy and we need it now
Westminster Hall debates Tuesday, 27 November 2007
Frankly, they just do not work -wind farms- and are over-subsidised. I have not come here to talk exclusively about wind and wind farms, but I can tell the hon. Gentleman that there is a great deal of opposition in my constituency to the non-productive use of such technologies, which are completely useless according to the evidence that we have received. I am talking specifically about the midlands; it is not for me to go into the broader picture in this debate, but I treat the whole issue of wind farms with a great deal of scepticism and I think that they are extremely damaging environmentally.
Clean coal should enjoy financial incentives equal to those enjoyed by the renewable energy sector, and nor should the subsidies that have gone to nuclear power be forgotten. Will the Minister address this specific point in his response?
I should like to give a brief but important example of how over-zealous support for renewables, particularly wind power, has led to increased carbon emissions. Denmark has the most intense concentration of wind generation in Europe. At peak output, its wind farms can account for nearly 64 per cent. of Danish peak power, but that rarely occurs. Last year, Danish carbon emissions rose as the Danish grid fell back on older, coal-fired power stations to plug the energy gap left by underperforming wind farms. Its power stations used 50 per cent. more coal than in 2005 to cover the failings of wind power, and its wind turbines generated a mere 22 per cent. of electricity, down from 29 per cent. in 2005. The increased demand for coal and the fact that it was burned in old, unmodified stations meant that Danish carbon emissions rose by 36 per cent. in 2006. My point is obvious, and I suspect that Danish investment in clean coal is imminent.
Investing in clean coal technology could allow us to enjoy consistent and competitively-priced base load supply, with huge reductions in carbon emissions. Overzealous and irresponsible support for renewables, no matter how well-meaning, can and will lead to what is increasingly called “the Danish problem”.