A Bear of Very Little Brain

I wonder why in the United Kingdom the intellectual capacity of ministers and civil servants who deal with energy issues is so low. I know that I am being unusually rude, but energy and the environment are too important issues to have bears of very little brain in charge of policy.

Avid readers of these essays will know that I have always been opposed to wood burning power stations and will know the reason is that they cause terrible environmental damage. Nevertheless, the government decreed that because wood is renewable we ought to have wood burning power stations even though we are causing environmental damage in the form of extra carbon dioxide emissions (when compared with gas) and extra pollution and particulate pollution when compared with gas, oil or coal.

It seems that the ministers felt that dirty renewables were better failing to meet our renewable targets with clean renewables.

Of course idiocy does not last forever and eventually common sense talks over, but not until the idiots have done a huge amount of environmental damage and damaged the purse of the United Kingdom taxpayers.

Today the government announced that it will cap subsidies for some biomass plants and end subsidies for wood burning power plants by 2027, which is fourteen long years away. Mr Davey, the energy minister, who seems to me to be a person of very little brain, claims that the subsidy was introduced to help the United Kingdom meet its renewables targets as a temporary solution.

This temporary solution is not temporary, and will continue for fourteen more years. Mr Davey is behaving like a football manager who replaces his goal keeper and central defenders with centre forwards, because he has a target of scoring more goals, when he should realise that his real target should be to win the game, or at least avoid losing it.

There is always a sly pleasure in saying “I told you so”. It alleges wisdom and is therefore boastful and arrogant. It is not for an individual to claim wisdom. I confess that I do get the sly pleasure of having told you so, but it barely lasts a moment until it sinks into sadness when I think of how much damage has been done by foolishness.

Perhaps I am being too harsh on the Energy Minister and the civil servants who work for him, but then again, perhaps not.  If I can understand these things sitting in London, just thinking about them and doing my own research, without access to advisers, scientists, staff or assistance, then surely so can the Department of Energy & Climate Change with all its budget, resources and access to information.

I am getting fed up of saying “I told you so”.

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