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Net Zero Is A Dangerous Fantasy, But Scientists Believe In Fairies It Seems

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Net Zero Is A Dangerous Fantasy, But Scientists Believe In Fairies It Seems

Ian Thorpe, 24 June 2022

With oil and gas prices rocketing and the highly propted sustainable energy sources performing way befow expectations the energy crisis currently gripping Europe (with worse to come as food shortages start to bite, polticians still seem more intent on pandering to the green lobby and chasing the dream of a fossil fuel free world rather securing the energy and food supplies needed by the people they serve.

Among the handlers of President 'Babbling Joe' Biden, the dementia - stricken U.S. leader, a cabal of extremists who formulate his admisistration's policies and manage the feed for his autocue from which he occasionally manages to repeat comments without fluffing his lines or forgetting where he is, there are many superannuated hippys who have been lifelong enemies of civilised living in an industrial society. These people are, every last one of them to a 'person', advocates of wind and solar electricity generation and have closed their ears and minds to the many pragmatic arguments against total dependence on these intermittent and unreliable sources.

The situation is no different in other major economies (except China and India,) the current energy crisis in western Europe which is partly due to energy policy mismanagement over several decades and partly to the economic sanctions imposed on Russia in retribution for its invasion of Ukraine, sanctions which, it must be said, are now hitting the nations which imposed them hader than the one on which they were imposed. One can only be gobsmacked at the folly of the politicians and their scientific advisers who, in pursuit of green dreams and 'net zero' fantasies, having made their nations dependent on oil and gas imports from Russia, then ban the importation of oil and gas from Russia without having secured alternative supplies. And these are the people who control energy policy.

The political and academic elites clearly believe that the challenge posed by 'climate change' is just a matter of reducing the amount of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emitted into the atmosphere from fossil fuel powered generation plant and not enough wind and solar, therefore achieving the transition to "net zero" (a national economy that each year emits no more CO2 into the atmosphere than it sucks out will be a simple matter of building sufficient wind and solar farms and having those facilities replace the current power stations that use fossil fuels such as coal and gas.

This assumption is completely wrong. The much hyped transition to "net zero" via wind and solar power is not unrealistic in the near future, it is a total fantasy, the stuff of science fiction. Worse, it is a destructive fiction, it is unlikely that 'net zero' could be achieved without the arrival in our civilisation of several completely new and previously unimagined technologies and certainly cannot occur at all without dramatically undermining the economies, lifestyles and food supplies and political security of developed nations. And even if those problems could be circumvented, it cannot possibly occur at anything remotely approaching reasonable cost. At some point, the ongoing forced transition in USA, UK, Canada, Australia, France, Germany,Italy, Japan and all other nations that have signed up to the idiotic 'net zero' agenda will crash and burn.

No matter whether you build a million or ten million wind turbines and cover thousands of square miles of potential food producing land in solar panels, On a windless night they will still not produce a single watt of power, and will require full back-up from some other source.

In a predominantly wind/solar electricity system, where the fossil fuel back-up currently used to maintain baseload (and keep the hospitals, air and land transports systems, internet and telephones systems, street lighting and domestic lights and appliances running in the largest economies is banned, the difficukt and hugely expernsive question of energy storage must be addressed.

Without reliable fuel back-up, and with nuclear and hydro electric systems constrained by the same loonytoons green polcies, storage is the only remaining option. How much will be needed? How will it be done? How much will it cost? If some kind of battery based system is opted for how long will it be possible for the energy to remain in storage before dissipates?

One system that has been talked up a lot but in pilot schemes but has proved disappointing is hydraulic pumped storage. In this system at times of low demand or high output from generators the surplus energy is used to pump water from a large, low level reservoir to a smaller, high level lake and at times when production falls short of demand water is released from the high level to flow through a hydro - electric system back to the low level lake. An experimenal system at Dinorwig in Wales (UK) using this system was commisioned in 1984, surplus power from a nearby nuclear plant was used to pump water to the high level lake overnight when demand is low, to give a boost to the grid at peak times during the day. Though the system worked well it proved a limited success and haas not been widely adopted as yet. Another idea is the completely whacko V2G system which requires owners of electric cars to charge up their vehicles overnight and feed the energy back into the grid during the day. The sciencetits (sic) who dreamed up this one overlooked the fact that people use their cars during the day.

While virtue signalling politicians and reality challenged environmental activists spout hyperbolic nonsense about how the transition to net zero will be accomplished, at the present time governments are paying little to no significant attention to the storage problem. There is no detailed engineering plan of how to accomplish the transition. There are no detailed government-supported studies of how much storage will be needed, or of what technology can accomplish the job, or of cost, only grandiose pledges about saving the planet and scarmongering prophecies of catastrophe cause by climate change if unlimited resources are not committed to the war on fossil fuels.

Perhaps it is not surprising that nobody wants a serious debate about the cast and consequences of achieving 'net zero'. An American engineer named Ken Gregory published a study titled “The Cost of Net Zero Electrification of the U.S.A.” in which he calculated the cost of transition to 'net zero' for the USA at over $100 trillion (estimate around $20 trillion for UK which has rtoughly one fifth the po[pulation of the USA,) before even considering the question of whether battery technology exists that can store such amounts of energy for months on end and then discharge the energy over additional months. Quick answr: No, there is no such technology.

To put this in perspective, the entire U.S. GDP is currently around $20 trillion per year.

To sum up, nations signed up to the Paris accord pledges on CO2 reduction must have a CO2 neutral electricity system up and running and capable of supplying all of the energy needs of a large nation by by 2035, yet with that date only tgirteen years away we have no feasibility study or demonstration project, and have not even started the basic research yet.

So the leading nations of the developed world are heading down a government-directed and coerced path ofmassively building wind turbines and solar panels, while forcing the closure of fully-functioning power plants burning coal, oil and natural gas. Meanwhile China, India and other emerging economies exempted from the contraints of the Paris accord are building coal and gas fired power plants at an accelerating rate as corporate business offshores more and more industry to these low cost, low regulation jurisdictions. We have already been given a taste of the likely consequences of a fossil fuel free energy system as a result of the sanctions on Russia, but a total failure of the electricity supply, even for a short time, would be far more damaging. It is only a question of time before somewhere the system ceases to work as dependency on unreliable energy sources increases. Millions of people be left without heat in the dead of winter, in which case many will likely die? A fully-electrified transportation system would cause entire nations to grind to a halt, preventing food companies from distributing food to shops, hospitals would not be able to treat patients.

No sane government would ever contemplte taking on the risks of implementing such a policy, but politicians are not sane. They are so completely and uttery barking mad they routinely listen to and act on the ravings of public sector scientists, a breed so detached from reality that one could expect to get better advice from talking to faires.

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