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Topic Title: Engineering Electricity Market Reform
Topic Summary: What role should engineers play in electricity and other energy market reforms?
Created On: 23 July 2012 03:22 PM
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 30 November 2012 06:00 PM
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jarathoon

Posts: 1043
Joined: 05 September 2004

Just up on David Carrington's Environmental Blog on the guardian website...

"David Cameron turns hit man over top energy and climate job"

http://www.guardian.co.uk/envi...hange-cameron-kennedy

"Today, the Financial Times revealed that David Cameron has blocked the appointment of David Kennedy, chief executive of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), as the new permanent secretary of the department of energy and climate change. Perhaps that seems undramatic to you, just a bit of Whitehall gossip. Think again: this is the political equivalent of a mafia hit and Kennedy got whacked."



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James Arathoon
 03 December 2012 07:16 AM
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geoffbenn

Posts: 245
Joined: 08 July 2004

Originally posted by: jarathoon

Just up on David Carrington's Environmental Blog on the guardian website...

"David Cameron turns hit man over top energy and climate job"

http://www.guardian.co.uk/envi...cameron-kennedy


"Today, the Financial Times revealed that David Cameron has blocked the appointment of David Kennedy, chief executive of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), as the new permanent secretary of the department of energy and climate change. Perhaps that seems undramatic to you, just a bit of Whitehall gossip. Think again: this is the political equivalent of a mafia hit and Kennedy got whacked."
Typical!
Kennedy was unanimously selected as the best qualified candidate by an eminent panel and endorsed by the head of the civil service and the energy secretary Ed Davey. "In four years at the head of the CCC, Kennedy's intellectual rigour has won the support of both industry and the green lobby.
The news that Osborne has appointed Neil O'Brien, director of Policy Exchange and critic of renewable energy and strong action on climate change, as adviser only shows that the chancellor's advice will be as narrow as ever.

The reaction to Cameron's blackball has been suitably scathing. "It is hard to read it as anything other than an effort to stop the climate change department from being run by a respected expert who actually supports strong action on climate change,"

And this while the annual climate conference is hearing the rate of ice melt has tripled.
Polar ice melting clocked at triple 1990s' pace
Fueled by global warming, polar ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are now melting three times faster than they did in the 1990s, a new scientific study says.

I just don't think some of our influential politicians are keeping up with what is becoming a fast paced evolving situation.

Recent ScienceDaily.com items:

More Solid Measure of Melting in Polar Ice Sheets: Planet's Two Largest Ice Sheets Losing Ice Fast
Understanding why the ice sheets have been shedding mass faster in the last decade is an area of intense research.

More Intense North Atlantic Tropical Storms Likely in the Future


Human-Caused Climate Change Signal Emerges from the Noise


They will surely go down in history...

-------------------------
Geoff Benn BSc(Hons) CEng MIET
George Washington: Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains taken to bring it to light.
skepticalscience.com: getting skeptical about global warming skepticism
sourcewatch.org: exposing public opinion manipulation
 03 December 2012 03:25 PM
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jarathoon

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Joined: 05 September 2004

Kennedy didn't strike me as intellectually rigorous when he gave evidence before the Energy and climate change select committee a few months back.

He publicly seemed up for just about everything that DECC had on offer in the draft bill, which was so bad it meant that the previous permanent secretary had to resign.

Now he might be being intellectually rigourous in private. But someone who cannot bring a deep intellectual critique of a flawed draft energy bill to a select committee meeting, doesn't strike me as someone suitable for the DECC permanent secretary job at this moment in time.

A few weeks we were told that George Entwistle was the best candidate for DG, but it turns out he that he was not decisive enough and could not defend what few actions he made, when questioned about them in public. As it turns out he was totally inappropriate for the job.

James Arathoon





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James Arathoon
 03 December 2012 04:05 PM
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jarathoon

Posts: 1043
Joined: 05 September 2004

If you have not noticed it already DECC is offering some more jobs for engineers...

http://jobs.theiet.org/jobs/ex...?contextType=featured

"We are also seeking to recruit two additional experienced Engineers to work on our Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) Programme - CCS is DECC's biggest programme - It's a very exciting challenge and provides an opportunity to work alongside the UK's developing CCS industry on some big engineering challenges."

When I suggested to a another engineer at a recent meeting that it might be cheaper to ship the CO2 to Iceland to convert it methanol fuel using geothernal energy, he pointed out that volcanos already give out lots of CO2 and so they don't necessarily need our supplies.

Any engineer who takes on the CCS programme role and helps DECC produce a more economically viable policy to replace their existing one has my full support.

James Arathoon



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James Arathoon
 03 December 2012 06:37 PM
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Ipayyoursalary

Posts: 265
Joined: 21 November 2009

DECC could do with some decent engineers. Perhaps they could explain to them how you can't power a modern economy on intermittent wind turbines, how the UK's 1.7% contribution to mankind's 3% contribution to total natural CO2 emissions is completely negligible and how cheap abundant energy is an essential ingredient for improving human health and wellbeing. They could also explain that spending £ Billions pumping a harmless natural plant fertisiling gas underground is a huge waste of money, energy and resources.

However, unfortunately it seems the type of 'engineer' they'd get applying would be an alarmist drama queen who's believes there's a 'climate crisis' despite no warming this century, record antarctic ice and declining hurricanes and tropical storm strength. http://wattsupwiththat.com/
 03 December 2012 08:45 PM
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geoffbenn

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YouDontPayMySalary,

Guess you're in the IET pay section, or at least you were?
Originally posted by: Ipayyoursalary

DECC could do with some decent engineers. Perhaps they could explain to them how you can't power a modern economy on intermittent wind turbines, how the UK's 1.7% contribution to mankind's 3% contribution to total natural CO2 emissions is completely negligible and how cheap abundant energy is an essential ingredient for improving human health and wellbeing. They could also explain that spending £ Billions pumping a harmless natural plant fertisiling gas underground is a huge waste of money, energy and resources.

Wow, you really seem to have an opinion! Well you're entitled to it, and the reputation that goes with spreading mis-information and pseudo-science. Still, it gives me an opportunity to respond to your points and so present the main-stream peer-reviewed science upon which decisions should be based.

Carbon Dioxide Could Reduce Crop Yields ScienceDaily (Nov. 30, 2012):
the more carbon dioxide the better? The equation is unfortunately not as simple as that. The plants, which ensure our basic food supply today, have not been bred for vertical growth but for short stalks and high grain yields.

I make no apology for extensive use of SkepticalScience.com. It is a very well organised resource, helping the reader with introductory comments at up to 3 levels (which I'll paste in here), then a full discussion (often with graphs) littered with references to other sources including main-stream scientific papers, then a further reading section, and even a discussion.

Climate Myths sorted by taxonomy

Just because something is a small percentage doesn't mean to say it's not significant, think catalysts...

Are humans too insignificant to affect global climate?
Humans are small but powerful, and human CO2 emissions are causing global warming.
- nice graph.
and the Intermediate level
Atmospheric CO2 levels are rising by 15 gigatonnes per year. Humans are emitting 26 gigatonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere. Humans are dramatically altering the composition of our climate.
- more nice graphs

How do human CO2 emissions compare to natural CO2 emissions?
The natural cycle adds and removes CO2 to keep a balance; humans add extra CO2 without removing any.
and the Intermediate level
The CO2 that nature emits (from the ocean and vegetation) is balanced by natural absorptions (again by the ocean and vegetation). Therefore human emissions upset the natural balance, rising CO2 to levels not seen in at least 800,000 years. In fact, human emit 26 gigatonnes of CO2 per year while CO2 in the atmosphere is rising by only 15 gigatonnes per year - much of human CO2 emissions is being absorbed by natural sinks.


CO2 is plant food
More Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere is not necessarily good for plants.
and the Advaanced level
The effects of enhanced CO2 on terrestrial plants are variable and complex and dependent on numerous factors


Cutting Carbon Dioxide Could Help Prevent Droughts, New Research Shows
The team's work shows that carbon dioxide rapidly affects the structure of the atmosphere, causing quick changes precipitation, as well as many other aspects of Earth's climate, well before the greenhouse gas noticeably affects temperature.
- interesting that we're seeing alot of droughts and floods...

-------------------------
Geoff Benn BSc(Hons) CEng MIET
George Washington: Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains taken to bring it to light.
skepticalscience.com: getting skeptical about global warming skepticism
sourcewatch.org: exposing public opinion manipulation
 03 December 2012 08:58 PM
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geoffbenn

Posts: 245
Joined: 08 July 2004

And he goes on:
Originally posted by: Ipayyoursalary
However, unfortunately it seems the type of 'engineer' they'd get applying would be an alarmist drama queen who's believes there's a 'climate crisis' despite no warming this century, record antarctic ice and declining hurricanes and tropical storm strength.

That old favourite myth that 1998 was the end of global warming (I really am surprised at professional engineers hanging onto this one, surely you know enough maths to understand statistics and trends?). In fact since it's the favourite myth of climate change deniers they are easy to spot. And since it's so easy to understand it doesn't fool many people either. What has global warming done since 1998?
For global records, 2010 is the hottest year on record, tied with 2005.
and the Intermediate level
The planet has continued to accumulate heat since 1998 - global warming is still happening. Nevertheless, surface temperatures show much internal variability due to heat exchange between the ocean and atmosphere. 1998 was an unusually hot year due to a strong El Nino.

How about some cutting edge science:
Why Antarctic Sea Ice Cover Has Increased Under the Effects of Climate Change
"Sea ice is constantly on the move; around Antarctica the ice is blown away from the continent by strong northward winds. Since 1992 this ice drift has changed. In some areas the export of ice away from Antarctica has doubled, while in others it has decreased significantly."
NASA Study Examines Antarctic Sea Ice Increases
first direct evidence that marked changes to Antarctic sea ice drift caused by changing winds are responsible for observed increases in Antarctic sea ice cover in the past two decades.
More Solid Measure of Melting in Polar Ice Sheets: Planet's Two Largest Ice Sheets Losing Ice Fast
Sometime around 1999, the ice sheets started losing more mass, and probably have been losing mass more rapidly over time since then.


- declining hurricanes and tropical storm strength? I think not...
More Intense North Atlantic Tropical Storms Likely in the Future
"We found that the PDI is projected to increase in the 21st century in response to both greenhouse gas increases and reductions in particulate pollution over the Atlantic over the current century. By relating these results to other findings in a paper we published May 13, 2012 in the journal Nature Climate Change, we found that, while the number of storms is not projected to increase, their intensity is," he says.

Originally posted by: Ipayyoursalary
http://wattsupwiththat.com/

A gratuitous link to a dodgy site produced by Anthony Watts
a blogger, weathercaster and non-scientist, paid AGW denier who runs the website wattsupwiththat.com. He does not have a university qualification and has no climate credentials other than being a radio weather announcer. His website is parodied and debunked at the website wottsUpWithThat.com Watts is on the payroll of the Heartland Institute, which itself is funded by polluting industries.
Heartland Institute
"Despite criticizing climate scientists for being overconfident about their data, models and theories, the Heartland Institute proclaims a conspicuous confidence in single studies and grand interpretations....makes many bold assertions that are often questionable or misleading.... Many climate sceptics seem to review scientific data and studies not as scientists but as attorneys, magnifying doubts and treating incomplete explanations as falsehoods rather than signs of progress towards the truth. ... The Heartland Institute and its ilk are not trying to build a theory of anything. They have set the bar much lower, and are happy muddying the waters."

Like I say, you're entitled to your opinions and your reputation, as am I. Since you choose to hide behind a username then I can only wonder if you are perhaps in the pay of the fossil fuel industries? For the record, no one pay me to hold my views on climate change.

-------------------------
Geoff Benn BSc(Hons) CEng MIET
George Washington: Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains taken to bring it to light.
skepticalscience.com: getting skeptical about global warming skepticism
sourcewatch.org: exposing public opinion manipulation
 03 December 2012 10:29 PM
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jarathoon

Posts: 1043
Joined: 05 September 2004

Some of you will be unsurprised to learn that there has been yet another rise in the cost of the new EPR being built at Flamanville, Normandy.

"EDF plant cost rises damp nuclear hopes"

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/662e...c0.html#axzz2E1mCrJN7

http://www.reuters.com/article...idUSBRE8B214620121203

Earlier today EDF energy announced that the EPR plant at Flamanville will now cost 8.5 billion Euros, up from 6 billion.

Recently there has been lots of talk on various websites about trying to level the grid cost of different power sources in favour of nuclear...

http://www.world-nuclear-news....rid_cost-2911128.html

I would welcome fuller transparency concerning all costs, including build costs, grid costs, connection costs, power loss costs and commercial accident insurance cover, and decommissioning and waste disposal costs etc.

I am not sure the net effect of all this added transparency on costs will help lead to a new batch of 3rd generation nuclear power plants built in the UK though.

James Arathoon

-------------------------
James Arathoon
IET » Energy » Engineering Electricity Market Reform

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