Many governments in the Western world have committed to “net zero” emissions of carbon in the near future. The US and UK both say they will deliver by 2050. It’s widely believed that wind and solar power can achieve this. This belief has led the US and British governments, among others, to promote and heavily subsidise wind and solar.
These plans have a single, fatal flaw: they are reliant on the pipe-dream that there is some affordable way to store surplus electricity at scale.
In the real world a wind farm’s output often drops below 10 per cent of its rated “capacity” for days at a time. Solar power disappears completely every night and drops by 50 per cent or more during cloudy days. “Capacity” being a largely meaningless figure for a wind or solar plant, about 3000 megawatts (MW) of wind and solar capacity is needed to replace a 1000 MW conventional power station in terms of energy over time: and in fact, as we shall see, the conventional power station or something very like it will still be needed frequently once the wind and solar are online.
We are nearing a turning point for democratic support for environmentalism. Gordon Brown’s 2008 Climate Change Act legislated to slash CO2 emissions by 80 per cent by 2050, a seismic shift pushed through with little debate but much superficial public approval. Theresa May strengthened this to 100 per cent by 2050, the “net zero” target; again, the public liked the sound of this, if not of Mrs May. China will continue to increase its emissions by more than we cut ours, but our entire ruling class has signed up to this iron-clad legal framework, with no dissent tolerated.
- Privacy war breaks out as suppliers move customers onto PAYG plans remotely
- Move puts them at risk of blackouts if they cannot afford to top-up their balance
- Households are being left in the dark and without heating for weeks at a time
- Some 500 customers believed to have been put on prepayment plans this year
Key messages in this report
• Behaviour change is essential for achieving climate and environment goals, and for delivering wider benefits.
• The Government’s current approach to enabling behaviour change to meet climate and environment goals is inadequate to meet the scale of the challenge.
• The public want clear leadership on the areas of behaviour change they should prioritise, and they want the Government to lead a coordinated approach to help them adapt by making change easier and fairer.
• Priority behaviour change policies are needed in the areas of travel, heating, diet and consumption to enable the public to adopt and use green technologies and products and reduce carbon-intensive consumption.
• There is a need for greater leadership and coordination across Government departments and with wider society on behaviour change for climate and environmental goals.
• The Government needs to provide a positive vision and clear narrative on how the public can help achieve climate and environment goals, and to lead by example.
• Information is not enough to change behaviour; the Government needs to play a stronger role in shaping the environment in which the public acts, through appropriately sequenced measures including regulation, taxation and development of infrastructure.
• Fairness is key to effective behaviour change.
• Businesses have a critical role to play in enabling behaviour change through increasing the affordability and availability of greener products and services, and engaging customers and employees.
• Government should also support and celebrate civil society organisations, faith communities and local authorities delivering local behaviour change projects.
• Government should learn from examples of where it has effectively enabled behaviour change, including during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as from past failures.
Oliver Stone is a filmmaker with 3 Oscar wins and 11 Oscar nominations. His films include Platoon, Wall Street, Born on the Fourth of July, Scarface, JFK, Nixon, Alexander, W, Snowden, and documentaries where he has interviewed Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez, and Vladimir Putin.
0:00 – Introduction
2:54 – Nuclear power
15:52 – Russia and US relations
21:07 – JFK and the Cold War
26:24 – Interviewing Putin
50:02 – Invasion of Ukraine
59:20 – Why Putin invaded Ukraine
1:13:44 – Propaganda
1:21:02 – Interviewing Putin in 2022
1:28:17 – Nuclear war
1:34:28 – Advice on interviewing
1:38:09 – Interviewing Hitler
1:41:30 – Putin interview language barrier
1:42:41 – Love
1:44:36 – Advice to young people
1:47:42 – Mortality
1:48:44 – Regrets
1:50:41 – Meaning of life
Oliver Stone’s The Putin Interviews (2017)
Revealing Ukraine (2019)
Ukraine on Fire (2016)
The Untold History of the United States (2012)
- Chapter 1: World War II
- Chapter 2: Roosevelt, Truman & Wallace
- Chapter 3: The Bomb
- Chapter 4: The Cold War: 1945-1950
- Chapter 5: The ’50s: Eisenhower, the Bomb & The Third World
- Chapter 6: JFK: To the Brink
- Chapter 7: Johnson, Nixon & Vietnam: Reversal of Fortune
- Chapter 8: Reagan, Gorbachev & Third World: Rise of the Right
- Chapter 9: Bush & Clinton: American Triumphalism – New World Order
- Chapter 10: Bush & Obama: Age of Terror
See the full episode playlist on Odysee.
Smart meters will reportedly undergo a massive change and automatically send suppliers updates every 30 minutes on customers’ power use starting from May, the Telegraph has revealed. In May, energy regulator Ofgem will be given the green light to change the way smart meters work, possibly paving the way for “time of use” tariffs.
This could see customers charged different rates for energy throughout the day depending on demand, industry experts have claimed.
Such a system could see households pay more to use electricity at peak times, however, energy bosses have insisted the move will be optional for customers and even stated it will save money.
The National Grid is paying households to ration their power usage at peak times amid a scramble to reduce pressure on Britain’s energy infrastructure.
From Friday up to 1.4m households will be paid if they cut their normal electricity consumption at certain two-hour periods during the day, as an experiment to see how households’ behavior might be changed.
The move is a pilot scheme intended to pave the way for a broader overhaul of the country’s billing system as the UK ditches reliable but dirty fossil fuel plants.
Households will experience the biggest fall in their living standards since records began as they face soaring inflation, tax increases and rising energy bills.
In a bleak assessment of the year ahead, the Bank of England warned people that take-home pay would fall by five times the amount it did during the financial crisis of 2008. It will be the worst hit to real incomes since comparable records began in 1990.
A doctor has warned that today’s huge hike in gas and electricity prices for 22million homes across the Uk could mean a rise in heart attacks and strokes.
Dr Amir Khan spoke out on ITV’s Lorraine this morning, as he fears the huge new bills will have a devastating effect on people’s health. As a doctor, he said he knows he will see the effects on patients attending his GP practice.
…”It has a really devastating impact on their health. The first thing – if you can’t afford to heat your home, it actually causes an increased risk of developing heart attacks and strokes because your blood vessels contract to conserve heat, which pushes your blood pressure up, and over time that has an impact on your heart attack risk.”
“For instance, even with public criticism being high, many still perceived government approval as the yardstick for safe behaviour during COVID-19 ‘we’re allowed to do this now [so must be safe]…’. This reveals, for many, a deep set reverence for legitimate government authority, regardless of one’s personal political views.”Net Zero: principles for successful behaviour change initiatives, p.24
This research looks at UK and OECD government-led behaviour change initiatives over the last 70 years. It identifies 9 principles that can be applied to encourage the behaviour change needed to achieve Net Zero.
The research was carried out by the Behavioural Insights Team (BIT). It was commissioned by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).
This document has been removed from the gov.uk website. Archives can be found here:
A supposedly ‘green’ power station subsidised with public money is Britain’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gas, research shows.
Drax in Yorkshire burns wood pellets, which are treated as a ‘renewable’ fuel and the site has attracted more than £800million of taxpayer subsidies.
But analysis shows that the burning of wood for power – known as biomass – has been the cause of more carbon dioxide emissions than coal since 2019.
Drax burns millions of tonnes of wood to provide around 12 per cent of the UK’s total electric power, generating 15.6megatonnes (Mt) of carbon dioxide emissions each year, which cause the planet to heat up by trapping heat around the Earth – the greenhouse effect.
The power station is also one of the top five emitters in Europe of toxic air pollution particles known as PM10.
Currently accounting rules allow Drax to be treated as ‘carbon neutral’.
In an age of high energy costs and constricted supply, inflation and unemployment rose together. Forced to choose, governments and central banks decided to prioritise controlling inflation. Western governments made it harder for trade unions to strike, curtailing the ability of workers to demand higher wages. The US Federal Reserve then administered a severe monetary shock to the world economy. In driving interest rates up to exceptionally high levels, Paul Volcker, the chair of the Federal Reserve, accelerated the de-industrialisation of most Western economies.
Ministers are racing to avert acute food shortages after high gas prices forced most of Britain’s commercial production of carbon dioxide to shut down.
Published Nov 4 2013
“Walking can be 1.5 times more polluting than driving.”
Which is more polluting—driving a mile to work or walking that mile? The easy answer is, of course, driving. Cars have tailpipes; people don’t. Far more energy is needed to push a 3,000-pound car along the road than is needed to move a 150- to 250-pound body along a sidewalk. Walking seems like the green thing to do.
But appearances can be deceiving, making easy answers dead wrong. That’s the case here when the calories expended in walking are replaced.
Counting the Ways Energy is Consumed in the Food-Supply Chain
The primary reason that walking to work can be more polluting than driving is that growing crops and raising animals so that they can be consumed and digested by humans involves a food-supply chain that now extends to all corners of the Earth and uses a lot of energy. An unavoidable byproduct of this energy use is greenhouse gas emissions. How can this be?
In the first half of 2020, responses to the COVID-19 pandemic led to steep declines in global petroleum demand and to volatile crude oil markets. The second half of the year was characterized by relatively stable prices as demand began to recover. As petroleum demand fell and U.S. crude oil inventories increased, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil traded at negative prices on April 20, the first time the price for the WTI futures contract fell to less than zero since trading began in 1983. The next day, Brent crude oil, another global crude oil price benchmark, fell to $9.12 per barrel (b), its lowest daily price in decades.