Europe’s Green Fall

Looks like after the hallucinogenic green fantasy the morning after hangover has begun in Europe.

With incredibly high electricity prices, folks freezing in winter is spiking (up to about 1/3 without adequate heat in Greece at the peak of their troubles). Highest electrons price around driving industry out.

It’s an interesting POV being presented, including from the prior Environment Minister of Hamburg…

None of this news, really, to our sort. We saw it coming and said so, decades ago. Oh Well… I do find it interesting that they say 6 Euro-cents / kW-hr is subsidy to the wind and solar subsidy farmers and that’s about 1/3 the power bill. The folks who pushed this scam are clearly not dumb, they are creaming off a HUGE vigorish

15 minutes:

Now add in places starting to ban THE most efficient cars and trucks (Diesels) that the same government, not too long ago, exhorted people to buy… I predict the Yellow Vests are only the beginning… Gang Green has set it, the patient has noticed, and “cutting off the infected part” is the historical solution…

First country to bail out of the Green New Nightmare wins the industrialization and wealth prize.

I can’t see Europe as a place to put money for the foreseeable future. USA for now. Maybe China after their time of troubles is over. Nor Canada until they have a change of government. Perhaps some of the south east Asia / Japan areas…

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
This entry was posted in Economics - Trading - and Money, Energy and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

34 Responses to Europe’s Green Fall

  1. Graeme No.3 says:

    Well you can leave Australia off your list as a place to invest. Both major parties are full of ‘green talk’ and cannot see any consequences to their policies. All the State governments are heading to disaster as fast as they can go. If some loony claimed on TV that people should abandon cars and ride a purple hippopotamus there would be a rush to subsidise breeding them.
    The only “good sign” is that the coming but slowly arriving summer and peak demand the electricity grid is now so fragile that blackouts are inevitable on hot days. Last summer there was “load shedding” in SA & Victoria, the 2 most “green” infected States, and more will follow. We will look just like California now. Public anger is the only hope to change our third rate politicians behaviour.

  2. Julian Jones says:

    There is indeed much ‘’vigorish’ in subsidised energy, of all types. An associate with a small water turbine still collects £1100 per month subsidy and gets to keep the electricity and will do for many years yet (he heats his half olympic size swimming pool to 85 deg, all year round) – idiotic and likely similar much repeated.
    New subsidies on renewables (FiTS) have ended in UK – but those on nuclear & hydrocarbons continue, in many direct and indirect ways, and are very large. There is some poor renewables technology / greenwash; but also much hydrocarb/nuclearwash.
    Wind is rapidly dropping in cost in UK and no longer needs subsidies – it will continue to fall, already new wind contracts around half the cost of new nuclear, for which we really have no idea of whole life cycle costs. Which questions the premis of the film about the EU you posted; explained by the subsidised vigorish here I suppose.
    Strange thing when working with free kinetic energy – usually the more expensive & better engineered the powertrain – the longer it lasts … moving eventually into very low cost energy, for many decades. Nothing remotely like thermal generators that keep polluting and demanding fuel.
    It turns out that apparntly ‘cheap’ gas is one of the worst wealth creators for our economy (Cardiff Business School); nuclear of course not much better.
    I see Michael Moore has backed an expose of renewables but haven’t seen yet http://horsepower.net/Planet-of-the-Humans-Michael-Moore-wind-solar-industry-film.html . I have been told one segment deals with short lived gearboxes on wind turbines; not surprising any tech can and will be built down to a price by some, especially for a 30 year contract. Spend a little more on the gearboxes and they will last a lot longer … its not that difficult.
    For years UKGov Renewables was hosted at ETSU Harwell a nuclear industry centre; for those of us promoting even mature hydro tech it was apparent they employed mendacious obstructiveness to all renewables.
    I am close by Barnwood, another nuclear centre – in 1996 a senior Principal Engineer from here approached us to collaborate on renewables as “he had achieved nothing in his career he was proud of”. He wanted ‘Nuclear Electric’ the then named utility, he worked for (at just below board level) to support a large deployment of renewables, instead of sponsoring a round the world yacht in a race. He persuaded the board of directors – the then government squashed the idea. We now know why, because the civil nuclear industry in UK is subsidizing our nuclear WMD.

    (The diesel cars fiasco was appalling but this was because the motor industry was blatently rigging the emissions safety data. Great shame, I love diesel cars, had seemed the perfect solution – just shows how wrong we can be).

  3. A C Osborn says:

    Julian Jones says: 9 November 2019 at 12:08 am
    “New subsidies on renewables (FiTS) have ended in UK – but those on nuclear & hydrocarbons continue, in many direct and indirect ways, and are very large. ”

    Please provide a list. and also explain how they offset the Carbon Tax on Fossil Fuels.

  4. jim2 says:

    The Renewables Obligation (RO) The RO is a requirement for the UK’s energy suppliers to source a percentage of their energy from renewable energy. To pay for new renewable generation the costs are added onto household bills.
    Feed-in Tariffs If you produce your own electricity through solar panels or wind turbines, your energy company may pay you money to do so, or pay you more money if you feed the energy back into the National Grid.
    Energy Company Obligation (ECO) If you come from a low-income household your energy company will offer you support to install expensive insulation upgrades.
    Warm Homes Discount Likewise, energy companies will offer help to low-income households to pay for their heating.
    Emissions Trading Scheme and Carbon Price Floor These are taxes on fossil fuel generation and a minimum price for trading carbon, again, designed to encourage energy companies to source their energy from low-carbon sources.

    https://www.uswitch.com/gas-electricity/guides/green-subsidies/

  5. jim2 says:

    With SEG, all licensed energy suppliers with 150,000 or more customers have to provide at least one SEG tariff. The smallest suppliers can also offer a tariff if they wish to, and all suppliers can choose to offer means of payment for exported electricity.

  6. jim2 says:

    Millions of diesel car drivers now face a £12.50 daily fee to drive in the centre of London, after the capital launched its ultra low emission zone.

    The measure is just the first in a series of low emission zones that are being considered across the country, and which will largely target owners of diesel vehicles. Birmingham will set up its own clean air zone and more than a dozen other areas are considering similar schemes.

    https://www.buyacar.co.uk/cars/diesel-cars/460/2019-diesel-tax-new-charges-and-surcharges-for-uk-drivers

  7. jim2 says:

    So, I found the liberal definition of fossil fuel “subsidy.” It means a tax or equivalent was reduced. Nothing more than 1984 doublespeak. From the article:

    A significant part of the UK fossil fuel subsidies identified by the commission is the 5% rate of VAT on domestic gas and electricity, cut from the standard 20%. The UK government did not dispute the data but denied that it provided any subsidies for fossil fuels under its own definition and that of the International Energy Agency.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jan/23/uk-has-biggest-fossil-fuel-subsidies-in-the-eu-finds-commission

  8. jim2 says:

    UK Company Car Tax:
    Your employer (or your limited liability company) will deduct any company car tax due to HMRC at the source. Your car is taxed at different rates, called benefit-in-kind rates, depending on:

    The car’s taxable value, or P11D value. Taxable value is the car’s ticket price plus VAT and delivery fees, less the cost of first registration and road tax (vehicle excise duty, or VED). You can find your car’s P11D value using HMRC’s company car and car fuel benefit calculator
    How much carbon dioxide the car emits
    The car’s fuel type — petrol, diesel, hybrid or electric
    Your income tax bracket.

    https://www.mileiq.com/en-gb/blog/uk-company-car-tax-rates-2018-2019/.

  9. jim2 says:

    And finally, the EU carbon tax is destroying UK, as well as EU, industry.

    Until now, the Commission has handed out free ETS permits to tackle industry’s complaints it is subject to “carbon leakage,” the term used to refer to the possibility high EU compliance costs will drive manufacturing to lower-cost parts of the world.

    But from 2021, companies will receive fewer free permits, boosting their costs just as they face investing in expensive new technology to enable the EU to reach a goal of climate neutrality by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement on curbing global warming.

    Some lawyers say the Commission must be prepared to be pulled into trade conflicts or European industry will be destroyed.

    https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-eu-carbon-bordertax/eu-leaders-risk-trade-tension-with-carbon-border-tax-to-protect-industry-idUKKBN1WH1V3

  10. Ossqss says:

    Let’s have a peek at some renewable statistics. Please note, burning biofuels is considered clean energy in the calculations, but still produces CO2 in large amounts that is swept under the carpet via creative EU accounting principles. Notice that they have to aggregate Wind, Solar, Tidal, and Geothermal together to get a visible piece of the pie.

    https://www.iea.org/statistics/renewables/

  11. H.R. says:

    Ossqss: “Notice that they have to aggregate Wind, Solar, Tidal, and Geothermal together to get a visible piece of the pie.”

    That’s because renewables are cheaper than nuclear and fossil fuels that they don’t need subsidies any longer, and are so much better for base load that fossil fuels have to keep all those subsidies just to barely be competitive.

    We’ll be so much better off when those batteries of the future are installed and we all settle in to using wind power for base load.

    (Don’t mind me. Just practicing up on my understated British sarcasm.)

  12. E.M.Smith says:

    @H.R.:

    FWIW I “got it” before your disclaimer… British Mum don’t ya know ;-)

    I’ve often enjoyed the fine line of British Humor that so many ‘Mericans and others just don’t get… It’s that point where you are just not quite sure if the person is being genuine or pulling your leg… then it dawns… ;-)

    I just love it…

    That long delicious bit where you realize what is happening and wonder if anyone else has caught on yet…

  13. YMMV says:

    Every day is the first of April.

  14. E.M.Smith says:

    Just OMG level of not listening to himself:

    https://news.sky.com/story/populism-is-a-threat-to-democracy-but-dont-panic-warns-francis-fukuyama-11855062

    Um, isn’t “Democracy” exactly the limit case of “populism”? What is democracy other than asking the populace what is popular with them?

    It’s an interesting video to watch, but not for the reason they think. It doesn’t convince me that Trump is the evil destroyer of minds nor that Brexit is the end of British worth; rather it is an amusing view inside the hall of mirrors of the warped mind games needed to embrace “the other side”…

  15. Kneel says:

    “…blatently rigging the emissions safety data. “

    Err, they did no such thing.
    They read the rules.
    They made a vehicle that met the rules.
    It’s not their fault that the rules as written do not reflect the intent of the makers – rulez is rulez, innit?
    In any other circumstances, the rulez people would be lambasted for making rulez so easy to “cheat”, and the rules would be changed so that “cheat” is impossible to duplicate.
    But in this case, someone working to the letter of the law got fined not for breaking the law, but for going against the intent of the law.
    Nice precedent, what? Should mean I can challenge that speeding ticket – after all, the intent of the law is that I am driving safely, and 70MPH in a 60MPH zone isn’t unsafe where the road is controlled access, the weather is fine and sunny, I have 5 mile visibility, and the only other road user visible at the time was the officer who booked me – after he did 100MPH to catch up!
    All those politicians who are within the letter of the law, while clearly defying the intent had better look out…

  16. H.R. says:

    @Kneel – Great comment.

    I was raised as a Christian fundamentalist (straight from the Bible – no central ‘Church’ authority over a congregation, just the elders there) and that was one thing that was impressed upon me from an early age; the letter of the law (Old Testament) versus the spirit of the law (New Testament). If you broke a spiritual law and what you did caused harm, you’d be stoned under the Old Testament and forgiven, or receive God’s grace (after punishment! there were consequences) after you confessed and repented.

    Since I am related to a measurable percentage of Texans, I am well aware of the Texas Rolling Stop. Out in the grazing or cotton growing lands, it’s flat and you can see for miles every which way. As you approach a stop, you look in in all directions as you slow down, and then actually come to a stop if you see someone else coming that might have the legal right-of-way. You slow down and roll through the intersection if no one is coming from any direction.

    The intent of traffic laws was to have rules that kept motorists safe. They have now morphed into laws that are enforced only when an Officer of The Law has nothing else better to do or the department needs the revenue from traffic fines.

    My point is that in Texas, you could argue the spirit of the law and get off, although I don’t know about that nowadays.

    You nicely pointed out the modern day lesson of the PC application of the Spirit of the Law when the Letter of the Law was followed.

    PC is all about what is desired at the time vs what was agreed to before the SJWs changed the rules on you. mid-game.

  17. H.R. says:

    P.S. to Kneel: I’d love to get my hands on one of those Volkswagen diesels cheap! – that was trashed by the gubmint for tuning to the test.

    Great cars and fire sale prices are a winning combination in my book :o)

  18. H.R. says:

    P.P.S. – Volkswagen programming notes

    IF Test connection is detected

    GOTO Pass Test

    ELSE

    Let ‘er rip and make the customer smile

    ENDIF

    PRINT

    Screw you, dang gubmint
    ;o)

  19. E.M.Smith says:

    At the time I made that argument to some friends, one from The Left looked at me like I was advocating evil. Were I in charge of VW, and knowing that an appology to The Left only ever gets you more grief: I’d have told the govenment “We passed your test and met the law. If you don’t like the way we did it, change your law.”.

    “Never give up”, and certainly “NEVER SURRENDER.”

  20. YMMV says:

    Julian Jones: “The diesel cars fiasco was appalling but this was because the motor industry was blatently rigging the emissions safety data.”

    ‘safety’ doesn’t belong in that sentence, but yes that is how ‘dieselgate’ was presented to us. But not what actually happened. First, it wasn’t all that blatant. I think it came as a shock and surprise to the people in those companies. It’s possible that it was something that was overlooked and not intentional at all. I don’t recall hearing a final determination of what actually happened. It’s possible we never will. What it clear is that the punishment was meant to be an example to others, very draconian, and not proportional to the harm of that extra NOx pollution.

    It was all a trap anyway. The regulators (such as CARB and the EU) make the rules stricter and stricter without much regard to whether they are technically achievable. So there is a lot of incentive to cheat on the testing. For CARB, if they make the rules so strict that no diesels can be made, so much the better. If the rules mean that diesels will be unaffordable, that’s good too. For them. For the auto makers, it means that even if you pass this test, the test in coming years will be even harder.

  21. Julian Jones says:

    YMMV – Thank you; I was referring more to particulates.
    eg “Top 100 European places where Dieselgate ‘kills’ most” – https://euobserver.com/dieselgate/141983
    Do you not think this a problem ?

  22. Julian Jones says:

    Hi AC – (first let me agree a point you made on a previous posting regarding the reliability of river hydro in Victorian era – I agree, the switch to steampower at that time was probably crucial in terms of reliability and helping the advance of beneficial techs. Differing priorities now).
    Some of the (mostly current) costs etc outlined here (posted before) : bit.ly/2zlCUfn
    In terms of subsidies of nuclear as you request, in UK these are numerous and mostly well understood (is it correct that no nuclear plants have been built anywhere without state subsidy, would be interesting to see exemplars without; other of course than from Young Sheldon …?).
    For current subsidies, based on Hinkley Point C :
    Subsidy # One: A guaranteed price for electricity – twice the market price
    Subsidy # Two: Loan guarantees – Loan guarantees transfer project risk, including that of cost overruns or delays, to the government.
    Subsidy # Three: Waste disposal – The price of these contracts is set according to the government’s waste transfer pricing methodology and is capped at GBP 5 billion. If costs go above this figure they will be on passed to the government.
    Subsidy # Four: Decommissioning costs – The lack of transparency over decommissioning plans and the inability to accurately predict nuclear decommissioning costs creates the possibility that the government would ultimately need to step in to provide additional funding to decommission Hinkley Point C. In reality these costs are not fully known.
    Subsidy # Five: Limitations of liabilities – The current risk-sharing settlement effectively removes the risk of bankruptcy from the nuclear industry by providing a subsidy. Understanding the true cost of this implicit insurance is a key to weighing the costs and benefits of nuclear power.
    from : https://www.iisd.org/story/the-united-kingdom-is-to-subsidize-nuclear-power-but-at-what-cost/
    Subsidy # Six : https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-48509942
    Other general externalised costs :
    Military / Social / pollution costs in countries supplying uranium
    Thermal pollution – applies to hydrocarbons too
    Biodiversty loss (also applies to some renewables, on much reduced but dispersed scale).
    etc
    I think Jim2 gave a good overview on other subsidies etc – we will see what is actually confirmed following Dec 12.

  23. p.g.sharrow says:

    Modern industrial society requires great amounts of Dependable Electrical Power. This is a problem that I have been studying for nearly 60 years. There is only one solution that I can see using Known Technology. Permanent large scale Nuclear facilities on Military Reservations. Only government / military can provide the security and Long term management of all the liabilities required by these needed Base Power generators. They should be inter-tied with High Voltage DC connections and then feed the local AC grid. Much like the Great Hydro Projects of the 1930s and 40s. Private firms have proved to be too greedy and short sighted as well as too small to handle this kind of responsibility. Only a large scale Military Reservation can provide the permanent infrastructure and security needed as well as the anchor point for such a system and a DC inter-tie structure needed to provide dependable electrical supply to all the AC system of distribution and use…pg

  24. A C Osborn says:

    Julian, the main subsidy for Nuclear at Hinkley C is because of the Subsidies for Wind & Solar.
    Nobody intheir right mind is going invest Billions in any new Generation unless they are going to get parity with Wind & Solar on revenue.
    It is even worse for Fossil Fuels because unlike Nuclear they are not accorded first call baseload, which means that after Nuclear Wind & Solar have first call on their generation.
    This means that FF generators have to sit idling with all the costs that that entails waiting for Wind & Solar to subside.
    As Jim2 pointed out Fossil Fuels do not get “subsidies” they only get tax breaks along with all other Manufacturers.

  25. A C Osborn says:

    P.G. SMRs overcome a lot of the Security issues with large Nuclear and should not be disregarded.

  26. A C Osborn says:

    Mr Kneel, I couldn’t agree more.
    What actually came out of those tests were very clean diesels with very good fuel consumption, good for everyone but the Controlling forces.
    UN, EU & EPA have lost their way and have been going for ever crazier controls.
    While governments, especially the UK local version create ever worse road conditions that increase polution.

  27. p.g.sharrow says:

    @ACOsborn they still have to be built and recycled and can not provide Base Load. They could be handy to add to the local Grid supplies just like all other generators. I wouldn’t depend 100% on any one supply provider. During this last PG&E fiasco one local grid distribution provider got it’s power from a Garbage Burner Generation plant. Another from a Saw Mill waste Burner. ..pg

  28. E.M.Smith says:

    I’ll just note in passing that a LOT of the “nuclear subsidies” are only required due to mind numbing risks from Green Blackmail Groups constantly dicking around with the “rules” you must meet. Not inherent problems of nuclear power. So the industry, quite reasonably, say “IF you expect me to sink $10 B into something that will be constantly screwed with by crazies, I’ll need a bit of guarantee they won’t kill it $9.9 B in.”

    @P.G.:

    The Small Modular Reactors can provide base load. (Many can also do a better job of load following too). They just batch them up on one site for a baseload service.

    @J.Jones:

    I’ve been driving straight Diesels (no nothing added) since about 1982 and not once have they killed anyone. That #killed projection and hype.

    @YMMV:

    My Mechanic has shown me test sheets for the same car, passing in prior years, now failing, where the car emissions are lower than the required numbers, and lower than when sold new, but not passing the “current test”. He explained that CARB lowers the limits each year even for existing cars to “get enough of them off the road”…

    As a consequence, I’ll not buy ANY new cars in California, nor any more used ones. My Diesel has no smog test required (prior to any Diesel emissions standard…) and I can keep it going for the rest of my life. Any car needing s “smog test” will either pass, or be re-registered where it does pass as I’m moving out of State “soon” and have a friend with an address…

    CARB is just another corrupt government agency now. When you can buy a car that passes all numbers required at time of manufacture, and they just decide it is enough anymore, that’s fraud.

  29. YMMV says:

    Julian Jones: “I was referring more to particulates. eg “Top 100 European places where Dieselgate ‘kills’ most””

    Oh. Yes, diesel particulate is a problem, and it is one that VW and others have made huge progress with. They weren’t joking when they called it the “Clean Diesel”. Together with low sulfur fuel, these are not your father’s diesels. It is rare to see black smoke or smell a diesel these days.

    The Top 100 places article looks like a hit job dressed up as scientific. However, it did bring up the question about whether PM2.5 is caused by NOx. For the answer to that question, I refer you to a real scientific study:
    https://www3.epa.gov/ttnchie1/conference/ei13/mobile/hodan.pdf

    So there is some of that caused by diesels, some caused by regular gasoline engines, and a lot cause by other things. Are we worried about breathing dust from brake pads too? And other things. Maybe we should get rid of everything modern and go back to oxen and hand plows after all. Or not. Or maybe Los Angeles should ban cars as an experiment, before they make everyone part of that experiment. For a starter, nothing allowed in LA but golf carts! Let the fun begin.

  30. Larry Ledwick says:

    Ref going back to “oxen and hand plows” – – One of the selling points for internal combustion cars was the elimination of horse droppings on the roads.

    All forms of energy have their “effluents”. The only question is where does it appear?
    At the smoke stack of the power plant, in the fabrication of fuel pellets, and fumes of the trucks that haul away the nuclear waste, the secondary emissions of the plants that reprocess it, at the pitch fork where the Amish dude picks up after his horses, or the plant that makes the fancy fiberglass and carbon fiber blades for the emission free wind turbines, where they toss out all the waste from the fabrication (resin, fiberglass and carbon fiber waste, mold release compound, concrete production emissions for the concrete used in the wind turbine foundation blocks – – – )

    Anyone who asserts any energy source is pollution free has not examined the life cycle emissions from mine to waste dump of all the components and the maintenance practices to keep it running.

    Find me a wind farm manufacturer that does not have a contract to haul away trash and production waste. Produces no exhaust fumes delivering and installing the turbines, or getting their workers to the plant to build the devices, machines the gears and bearings for the transmissions without producing any waste, manufactures lubricants for the transmissions and smelt the copper and rare earths for the generator magnets without leaving behind any waste products, produces steel for the turbine support pillars without producing any slag, CO2 or waste heat etc.

  31. Larry Ledwick says:

    Germany wind energy may be collapsing as they realize the economics don’t work.

  32. E.M.Smith says:

    Something about cold, hungry, and in the dark that “focuses the mind” of the electorate…

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