Enery - time for them to come to their senses

ith the continuing seismic avaricious and immoral increases in the cost of energy for heating, cooking and lighting, surely people will now make a much more vigorous stand by lobbying their local MPs, and engulf their respective power companies with bitter complaints – but if not, then what on earth will it take to do so?

It is an absurdity that apart from these recent outrageous increases in energy costs, we will now have, in the UK, the most mind-boggling energy policy possible encompassing both nuclear power and wind farms – two of the most expensive means of generating electrical energy!

The recent announcement to the proposed £13bn (I would dearly love to see the final bill) Hinkley Point Nuclear Power Station, which will take 10 years to build, coupled with a guarantee of nearly double the current market price per megawatt hour generated could be taken from the pages of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and is utterly breath taking – we have come a long way since the introduction of nuclear power in the UK during the 1950s, when it was claimed that the electricity generated would be too cheap to meter!

Additionally, it would appear that the disasters at Fukushima, Three Mile Island and Chernobyl have been erased from the pages of history and you do not have to be Sherlock Holmes to work out why they renamed Windscale, and Germany has abandoned its nuclear power programme.

To be sure, the power company EDF will be laughing all the way to the French banks, and we must not overlook our Chinese friends who will now have a foothold in UK energy generation coupled with the well known fact that the Chinese use trade as a means for geopolitical domination; it would be wise to remember Confucius when he said, “A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step”.

It is also unbelievable that nobody is highlighting the billions of pounds needed for eventual decommissioning costs and the real headache of safely disposing of nuclear waste – why do I get a mental image of more than one ostrich with its head in the sand? It is truly an ‘Emperor’s New Clothes’ scenario when the answer to our energy needs and economic salvation lies directly under our very noses in the form of shale gas. Do the main political parties in the UK not know that modern, efficient, relatively low emission gas-fired power stations can be built much more cheaply and in under half the time of a nuclear plant?

Complementing this strategy a UK fracking industry would also cut our dependence on imported gas and ensure security of supply – recognising that while awaiting our shale gas industry to make itself felt, we could import cheap shale gas from the US. This is not rocket science and it does beg the question, “Have our main political parties given leave of their senses?”

I am impatiently awaiting the next election where hopefully I will have the option to vote for UKIP with their common sense views on power generation, immigration, a referendum on the EU, and many other important and pressing matters.

Dave Haskell

Cardigan