Switching from coal fired powerstations to biomass - organic matter derived from living, or recently living organisms. Sounds dodgy?
Following the Spinx & AEG story in Ukraine & Canada we only have to look a little closer to home to see that Drax have been doing 'biomass' for quite some time, 'processed into electricity, fuel and heat. Biomass has been used for thousands of years and there are many forms available. The materials that Drax use include sustainable forestry and forestry residues, residual agricultural products, such as straw, sunflower seed husks and peanut husks, and purpose grown energy crops' though they appear to be adding more materials to burn on a weekly basis. Drax claims to only burn sustainable materials, 'of a far lower carbon footprint than that of fossil fuel-fired power stations.'
"We measure the full carbon life cycle of generating electricity from biomass, which means we measure the carbon emissions at each step of the supply chain, including harvesting, processing and transportation. The average carbon dioxide saving, over the full life cycle, resulting from burning biomass in place of coal is above 80%." Sounds .. too good to be true?
Perhaps they should have included the costs of conversions 'The first unit was converted in the second quarter of 2013. From May 2014, a second ran as an enhanced co-firing unit, burning at least 85% biomass, until it was fully converted in the fourth quarter of 2014. The third unit is expected to be converted in 2015/16. We are also evaluating the option to convert a fourth unit.'
Drax named after its closest village (no nimby's) was originally a Govt. owned electricity generating station built in 1957 operated by Central Electric with a capacity of 3960 megawatts and was privatised in the 1990's hissing Sid era. Drax's present owners are Drax Group Plc. Plc. Its huge size is equal to its huge emissions of Co2.
Fast forward to Paris COp - "The leaders of six countries and the World Bank have called on economies across the globe to put a price on carbon dioxide emissions to fight global warming. The heads of France, Germany, Chile, Mexico, Ethiopia and Canada all called for some kind of mechanism that essentially charges a price for each ton of carbon dioxide spewed by industry. It could be a simple tax or a more complex carbon credit trading system, they said.
"We simply cannot afford to continue polluting the planet at the current pace," World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said. "Carbon pricing is critical for reducing emissions." ... "Cheap and dirty energy is not cheap for the planet or the health of our people,"
Drax intends to burn 7.5 million tonnes of biomass imported from the United States and Canada. Peanuts? Costco Peanut Dump New Mexico & Food Banks. Renewable energy? So why would they need to invest in the CCS:
'At September 2015 Drax announced it would not be making any further investments into the CCS scheme after completion of the feasibility study because negative changes to government support for renewable energy had made the project too financially risky, plus drops in the company's share price due to the same uncertainty had reduced Drax's ability to raise funds.' Really? 'Drax's share price climbed this morning after the energy giant abandoned a £1bn carbon capture project because of the government's policy u-turn on renewable energy'
At November 2015 Osborne dropped a CO2 bomb as he announced over £1bil of funding to support the renewable energy sector had been, dropped.
"Britain will enter the Paris climate change talks this week with its credentials as a responsible, low-emission power generator in tatters." ... "Several companies, including Royal Dutch Shell and South of Scotland Electricity, had invested more than £100m developing technology for use at two carbon-storage projects in Scotland and Yorkshire. Carbon dioxide was going to be extracted from power station emissions, liquefied and pumped into underground chambers – until the government halted funding for the project." http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/nov/28/cop21-carbon-capture-...
So why would any sustainable energy commitment require a charitable handout from the Govts purse? Wiser heads: “Among the lessons from this disastrous reputation failure, and time-wasting and money-wasting failure, must be that energy policy and infrastructure delivery is too important to be left to short-term politicians,” said Haszeldine, a geologist and an expert on carbon storage." Prof. Sounds very cross. (But most agreeable)
Ah yes, crossed wires "Peace is a process not an event" said Bilbo Bob on bombing Syria yesterday.
With the politcal stage for energy policy looking evermore likely as a binary bet - all out (Osbornonomics - capitalist structures & privatisation with no Govt. handouts) or all in (Corbynonomics - state owned 'freestyle' freeloading) the middleground is shakily shrinking. Earth Song. Gnomes.
So? You can kill a man but not an idea. You can kill a policy but not an idea. All each and equally responsible. Lost in translation, not quite:
HS2? via the Yorkshire Post ... http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/business/business-news/demand-for-wood-fu...
“Together we can source, install and service boilers and importantly provide a Yorkshire-based supplier of fuel,” said Mr Humphrey. “We’ll be competing with national players whose trucks travel the entire country, but we will be local to our market making us a more reliable and knowledgeable option".
A poet? "... pellets are sourced from forests where three trees are planted together at a time. The middle tree relies on the outer two trees to enable it to great straight and tall and this middle tree is then typically used for furniture. The first tree is the weedy tree. It is sacrificed and used for biomass..." the third dimension? ..."It’s a virtuous circle and through our expertise and local supply network we are making the sector more resilient and sustainable.”
One step up ;-) http://verdenergy.co.uk/
Green? Experienced, Alan Johnson goes All Out for the EU: -) http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/eu-must-stay-together-keep-6923178#...