Saturday 28 November 2020

The Great Electricity Rip-Off

 Joe Duffy's show on Friday did a great job of highlighting the expensive electricity bills that many people are facing now :

Irish Energy Blog, Wind Aware Ireland and The Academy of Engineers have all been proven right, we warned long ago that society would be locked into high energy costs for many years because of the mad rush for wind energy at all costs.

And it's not just because of the PSO Levy, wind energy drives up all of the system costs of electricity, such as network costs (more here).

The impact from high energy bills during a freezing winter may have a worse impact than Covid-19. 

Wednesday 25 November 2020

EPA - Increasing Population and Consumption are a Threat to the Environment

Buried within the new EPA report on the state of the environmentamidst the usual references to climate change and the Green Deal, are the actual reasons for the deterioration of our environment - the growing economy and the resulting increased population. Although they stop short of mentioning immigration as the link between the two. 

These economic and population changes have inevitably brought about changes in our natural environment. The increasing population and increasing levels of unsustainable production and consumption place pressures on water quality, air quality, biodiversity and land, and this is largely at the root of the continuing deterioration in environmental quality since the previously published integrated assessment of Ireland’s environment in 2016.

The government's 2040 plan of increasing the population by one million is therefore in direct conflict with their climate goals. 

The report makes for pretty scary reading and spells out a crisis arguably much worse than Covid-19 :

  • 85% of our listed habitats are now in “unfavourable condition”
  • The number of ‘pristine’ rivers has fallen from 500 to 20 in just 30 years
  • We generate more than one million tonnes of food waste every year

Regrettably no mention was made of the damage wind farms have done to the environment. 

Friday 20 November 2020

2,000 Covid Deaths Milestone - A Time for Perspective

Yesterday it was reported that total deaths due to covid in ireland had passed the 2,000 milestone.

Now is a good time to try to get some perspective :

   • 93% of those had underlying conditions. 

  • 6,000 people die in Ireland every year from smoking related illnesses. 

We don't punish the rest of the population for smoking related deaths. Instead society takes a risk acceptance based approach, we highlight the dangers of smoking, the risks to your health and to others around you and the risks during pregnancy. Society accepts these risks and the hospitals deal with the 6,000 plus sick patients every year as best they can. Smokers are not ostracised nor are they locked into their homes but are treated as equal members of society, individuals with the freedom to decide what's best for them. 

While governments can be excused for over reacting to a virus we now know is 3 times less deadly than smoking, it is now time to adopt the same risk acceptance based approach to Covid-19 and return to normal living. 

Wednesday 18 November 2020

Wind Farm Built to Supply Amazon Data Centres Causes Landslide


One would think that the planners and authorities of Ireland would have learned their lesson from the Derrybrien Wind Farm landslide that occurred in 2003. Sadly not, as another landslide has occurred during the construction of a wind farm, this time in Donegal at Meenbog.  

In 2003, a mass of peat was dislodged from an area under development for the wind farm polluting the Owendalulleegh river, causing the death of about 50 000 fish and lasting damage to the fish spawning beds. 

The Irish State has being fined € 10.5 million so far by the European Union as a result of the Derrybrien disaster. Perhaps the money would have being far better spent on re-training those working in An Bord Pleanala who gave the green light to Meenbog wind farm despite warnings from locals that it's construction could trigger a landslide.

The video above shows the scale of the recent landslide with hundreds of thousands of peat sliding into the Mourne Beg River and it's tributaries and surrounding rivers. The smaller rivers are spawning grounds for brown trout and salmon. The River Mournebeg is a designated Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and an Area of Special Scientific Interest (ASSI). The Mournebeg river is also a tributary of the River Derg SAC. Despite these designations, both the developers and Amazon who were to use the energy from it for their data centres, got their way. So you might well say - what is the point of having protected sites at all if they can still be developed on ? Isn't the whole point of designating sites to prevent developments on or near them ?

Wind farms are a hysterical reaction to the perceived threat of climate change. And like the Polynesian tribes of Easter Island, the building of these tall structures must proceed at all costs and no matter the environmental disaster that they instigate.   There won't be any days off school to protest the destruction caused by wind farms and there wont be any extinction rebellion rallying to protect the fish, birds and bats that they destroy. 

The real environmental disaster goes on unhindered and unopposed and most disturbingly under the guise of environmentalism. 

Sunday 8 November 2020

Greencoat Renewables Purchase Another Poor Performing Wind Farm

Greencoat Renewables have purchased another poor performing wind farm in Tipperary, Cnoc Wind Farm, which made a loss of €897,000 in 2019. Its debts exceeded its assets by €1.1 million which is an indicator of insolvency although the accounts state that up front losses are a facet of wind farm development during the operational stage. The wind farm did trade during the year however with turnover of €1.4 million. Included in the loss is depreciation of € 872,000.

Irish Energy Blog previously showed that many wind farms in Ireland are making losses.

Brookfield Renewables have today indicated that they intend to sell the remainder of their Irish wind platform.


Friday 6 November 2020

Trump will be the First Incumbent President to Lose Despite Gaining More Votes

Only four incumbent presidents since 1912 did not win re-election but in all cases they lost with less votes than in the previous election. President Taft's votes collapsed from 7 million to 3 million,  Hoover's from 21 million to 15 million, Carter's from 40 million to 35 million and Bush Senior's from 48 million to 39 million.

Trump will be the first incumbent President to gain votes, almost 7 million, and still lose re-election.

But not only that, in all the key battleground states, Michigan, Wisconsin, Georgia, North Carolina, Arizona, Pennsylvania and Florida, Trump increased his vote from 2016, in some cases considerably. In the case of the other four incumbents, their vote decreased in all of these key states.