An excellent piece by Specky Editor Fraser Nelson http://is.gd/rqKyjg, titled “It’s the cold, not global warming, that we should be worried about”. Fraser points out that typically in the UK, some ten times as many people (mainly pensioners) die of cold as die of heat. Indeed, he says that since 2003 — the heat-wave that helped push the global warming agenda — 250,000 Brits have died from cold, only 10,000 from heat.
As a matter of public policy, therefore, the government should be ensuring that we have affordable energy, and should be helping people to avoid fuel poverty. This is also UKIP’s objective. www.affordable-energy.eu. But in fact, government policy is doing the exact opposite. In its futile and pointless efforts to mitigate climate change and save the planet, it is deliberately pushing prices up, undermining competitiveness, driving energy intensive businesses off-shore, and forcing pensioners into fuel poverty.
It does this by renewables subsidies, by pressing ahead with grotesquely unrealistic wind energy targets, by closing coal-fired power stations, and by signing up to the EU’s ETS (Emissions Trading Scheme). But worse than that, it’s now just brought in its Carbon Floor Price (because the ETS was failing to deliver sufficiently high prices).
I am horrified by the sheer dishonesty of the Coalition, which is seeking to claim that its policies actually reduce energy costs. They make this preposterous claim in the basis that if you spend a fortune on insulating your home and replacing all your appliances with the latest high-efficiency versions, you’ll use less energy. But the people most at risk, on low incomes or pensions, simply can’t afford to do that, Green Deal or no Green Deal. It’s like saying that bread has gone up 50%, but that bread is now really cheaper, if you choose to eat half as much.
I take issue with Fraser Nelson on only one point. He writes “The reaction to the 2003 heat-wave was extraordinary. It was blamed for 2000 deaths ….. such language is never used about cold, which kills ten times as many people each winter ….. Before long every political party had signed up to the green agenda”. Not quite true, Fraser. There was one political party that didn’t sign up, that campaigns for Affordable Energy, that rejects renewables unless, like hydro, they are economically sustainable. A party that rejects playground technologies like wind farms, and calls for proven, grown-up technologies like nuclear, gas and coal. That party is called UKIP.