Wind farms obsolete

Gas is the new Green energy

I, like so many, have commented on the uselessness of wind farms for electricity generation. In last week’s Spectator, there was a stunning summary by Matt Ridley, author of The Rational Optimist, of just what is wrong about Green dreams of renewables, especially wind farms, in the context of the discovery of natural gas. It is almost hard to believe that there is so much of this new, efficient energy source world wide.

The International Energy Agency reckons there is a quarter of a millennium’s worth of cheap shale gas in the world.

Peak oil? Forget it.

Ridley explains why shale gas will lead the way to a de-carbonised, hydrogen based energy source.

Yet switching to gas would hasten decarbonisation. In a combined cycle, turbine gas converts to electricity with higher efficiency than other fossil fuels. And when you burn gas, you oxidise four hydrogen atoms for every carbon atom. That’s a better ratio than oil, much better than coal and much, much better than wood.

He concludes:

To persist with a policy of pursuing subsidised renewable energy in the midst of a terrible recession, at a time when vast reserves of cheap low-carbon gas have suddenly become available, is so perverse it borders on the insane. Nothing but bureaucratic inertia and vested interest can explain it.

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