New coal-fired power plants: All the news that’s convenient to print

It’s almost a week since Steag GmbH, started up the new 725-megawatt Walsum-10 coal-fired power plant, in eco-friendly Germany.  The plant is due to commence full commercial operation before the end of the year.

Germany is consistently cited by environmentalists in the UK as a stunning example of the use of renewables, and evidence that the UK should follow Germany’s ‘wise’ example in moving away from fossil fuels.

How curious it is, therefore, that the same environmentalists have been completely silent about Walsum-10.  For that matter, how curious it is that while the UK is being saddled with more disproportionately expensive and grossly inefficient wind turbines, the UK lamestream media has completely ignored the Walsum-10 story.  You could perhaps understand a single coal plant’s opening being ignored, but no less than ten new hard-coal power stations, or 7,985 megawatts, are scheduled to start producing electricity in the next two years.

The difference between the German approach and the UK approach is stark.  The German government is determined to produce affordable and reliable energy for its industry and domestic consumers and is building substantial new coal to meet its needs.  Meanwhile the UK government is determined to put up wind turbines regardless of the cost and at the expense of reliability and is more concerned with forcing people to use less energy rather than striving to meet demand.

The compliant UK media remains silent.  They only publish the news that’s convenient to print, and in any case the journalists who cover political issues have other more pressing concerns than something as trivial as keeping the public informed.

5 Responses to “New coal-fired power plants: All the news that’s convenient to print”

  1. 2 cosmic 22/11/2013 at 4:55 pm

    I wish I knew more about this, so what follows is pretty well hearsay and I’d be happy to be corrected.

    Germany has about the highest electricity prices in the EU.

    Germany is not ignoring any EU agreements in what it’s doing with coal fired power stations.

    When the targets were set at 1990 levels, the UK understated and everyone else over stated.

    Germany imports a lot of nuclear generated energy and wind generated energy from Denmark when it suits, so the boxes get ticked.

    The problem with coal in the UK is the LCPD, designed to deal mainly with sulphur oxides following the acid rain scare of the 70s and early 80s. It is not altogether a question of CO2 emissions.

    For some reason adding scrubbing to UK coal fired generation wasn’t considered. The CCA also imposed the need to add scope for Carbon Capture and Storage to new coal fired plant. CCS increases the coal used by about 60%, and there are other problems with transporting the CO2 to the underground depositories and all sorts of other things. CCS has never been run as a full sized pilot scheme anywhere, so it’s a completely untested technology in practical terms.

    The obligation to fit CCS (or was it just the capacity to fit CCS?) was obviously done to price coal out of the market and make renewables look acceptable.

    As with most things EU which cause a problem, there’s quite a significant element of an own goal in the way the UK has gone about things.

    Now as I say, this is a fairly rough and ready account of how we are where we are and Germany is where it is, but I think it’s largely accurate. I’m happy to be corrected by someone who knows more.

  2. 3 Brian H 22/11/2013 at 11:07 pm

    Green crap = own goals. The UK deserves everything it’s going to get.

  3. 4 karma 28/11/2013 at 7:19 am

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  1. 1 New Coal-fired Power Plants (in Germany) | UKIP Hillingdon Trackback on 22/11/2013 at 10:11 am
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