Friday, March 13

Arctic sea ice heading for record minimum?

Please take some time to view the Arctic ice graph in the right column of this blog.
It is updated automatically and currently shows a massive drop in sea ice extent compared to the 2011-2012 record minimum.

The graph is produced by the US National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC).

If it continues it will be big news, or should be if the BBC were not so politically biased against climate change news reporting these days!

Chaos at retail park

Years after the Waterlooville retail park was expanded and the primary pedestrian route into Waterlooville wrecked by poor Havant Borough Council planning.
The trek into Waterlooville is still a nightmare with cars driving down the pedestrian and cyclist path.
The silver Audi in the photo is seen having just driven along the path, seconds before I had seen another car drive down the same section of path in the opposite direction.

The local councils (Havant Borough and Hampshire County) between them killed the old road into Waterlooville. The very road which had probably seen a few Battle of Waterloo soldiers on it 200 years ago. Now it's a car park that pedestrians struggle to negotiate. Oh yes, 'Waterlooville 200' is just great!

Related blog posts:

Waterlooville 200

It is 200 years since Wellington along with Bl├╝cher and other allies, defeated Napolean at the Battle of Waterloo.

This year Waterlooville is having it's own celebrations to commemorate that event and the creation of the town, unsurprisingly it's called 'Waterlooville 200'. The project was officially launched at the town library yesterday (are we allowed to call it a library now?) and the planned events include a talk at The Spring in Havant (why is it in Havant??), additional talks and events at Waterlooville Library, a re-creation of the return of soldiers from Waterloo and an open air theatre production commissioned for the event.

The event has got £44,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

It's a shame that all those 19th century buildings that would have made this year a bit special have been ruined by Havant Borough Councils bungling over planning in past decades. As mentioned previously the only building that remains true to the past is Swiss Cottage which is currently occupied by Citizens Advice Bureau.

Friday, February 20

High tide at Old Portsmouth today


Some nutters and UKIP supporters still deny sea levels are rising. Sea levels will be about 1 metre higher by the end of this century.

Friday, January 23

Robert Swan talks about climate change and the Antarctic

Inspiring talk by Robert Swan (not an environmentalist) and his life long project to protect the Arctic and Antarctic:

Wednesday, January 14

Labour are 'Chicken'.

I don't like any of the political parties in the up and coming election, with the exception of the Pub Landlords - Free United Kingdom Party (FUKP), but the fact is Cameron is correct today in saying Ed Milliband is chickening out in supporting the Green Party taking part in the proposed TV election debates.


Because unfortunately the Green Party in the UK is basically a relatively hardcore socialist party now which just happens to have some green policies. Labour do not want to be up against another socialist party in the elections or in TV debates. I suspect Labour party members and other socialists have joined the Green Party and bolstered it's numbers.

To quote the Green Party:
"Politics should work for the benefit of all, not just those who shout the loudest or have the deepest pockets."
The problem is though, what if people today have to do some sacrificing in order for people in the future to live reasonably well or survive? The fact is, the Green (socialist) Party can not acknowledge that 'austerit'y today might be a requirement so that future generations can survive. They also have a bog standard 1970s style socialist defence policy, straight out of the far left and CND handbook.

The Labour party do not even mention any environmental policy in their election media campaign. The whole issue of abandoning facts and science was highlighted today by Paul Nurse who has said that politicians are 'cowardly' in repeated ignorance of scientific evidence that is unpopular with voters.

At least Al Murray is honest about the hypocracy and short termism that we have in politics and if you are a UKIP supporter, then frankly there is little difference between FUKP and UKIP policies, they are both based on fiction.

So what is the answer?

Enviromental and Climate Change policy must be outside party political processes, we need such laws and legislation built into our democratic system so that all political partys are Green and so that we don't have to have a political party with 'Green' in their name. Being green should not be negotiable.

Tuesday, October 28

National Grid warning indicates renewable energy is underinvested

Today the National Grid has given a warning about the margin between total grid capacity available this winter and demand. The margin has narrowed because of the recent Didcot power station fire, numerous other problems with various other power stations and scheduled closures of various coal fired power stations.

What does this indicate?

Large Power Stations

Well firstly if shows that large centralised power stations can pose a significant risk to electricity security.

In the past they have been the targets of union campaigns against government policy, resulting in long black outs as a result of strikes.

Large power stations also have to be taken off line regularly so that they can be maintained and worked on, this can have a significant impact on their availability. It is a fantasy and a myth to think that a power station is available 100% of the time every year. They can be available for as little as 50% to 60% of the year.

They also potentially present a greater 'defence/terrorism' security risk because they are centralised and present large easier to hit targets.

Putting your eggs in a small number of baskets isn't a particularly sensible idea.

Finally, fossil fuel and nuclear power stations require imported fuel or fracked gas. This poses a potential risk both economically and militarily.

Renewable Energy

The first advantage of renewable energy is that it is massively distributed. One wind turbine or a solar panel on the neighbours house becoming defective, has no effect at all on overall grid performance.

The massive distribution of renewable energy also means it is more secure. It would be very hard indeed for an enemy to 'take out' hundreds of thousands or millions of distributed renewable energy installations. Potentially renewables can serve a similar purpose that the original internet was designed to do, basically a secure and tolerant system that is difficult to destroy or harm.

Renewable energy also tends to require less maintenance. Solar panels are solid state with no moving parts, whilst wind turbines are automated and can be left to run with little human intervention. This reduces potential disruptive action such as strikes interfering with supply.

As well as those issues, renewable energy reduces carbon emissions and does not depend on imported or 'fracked' fuels. Renwable energy is (apart from the eventual success of nuclear fusion) the only long term energy solution and one of many essential technologies that are required to tackle our climate change problem.