Thursday, November 05, 2020

CLINTEL challenges McKinsey’s climate alarmism

McKinsey and Company is the world’s biggest management consulting firm, with annual revenue topping ten billion dollars. Lately they have launched a climate scare campaign, no doubt hoping to make a fortune from it, but CLINTEL has called them out.

CLINTEL has sent a succinct letter of challenge to the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) which generates much of the scary stuff. MGI is a McKinsey subsidiary and brags that it is one of the world’s biggest think tanks.

This issue is important because while most businesses could care less what the UN IPCC says about climate change, they will listen to McKinsey. The specific target of CLINTEL’s letter is a voluminous report released in September, titled simply “McKinsey on Climate Change“. Thus this is the official voice of McKinsey. This so-called report is really just a 216 page collection of scary stories.

The report begins with this dire warming: “The changing climate is poised to create a wide array of economic, business, and social risks over the next three decades. Leaders should start integrating climate risk into their decision making now.”

And who better to help them integrate these supposed near term risks than McKinsey, for fat fees of course? Interesting that the climate is only poised to create these risks, not yet creating them it seems, but I digress.

McKinsey is quite clear that folks need help, saying “Stakeholders can address the risk posed by climate change only if they understand it clearly and see the nuances that make it so complicated to confront.”

Here are some sample McKinsey scare stories:

Will infrastructure bend or break under climate stress?

Could climate become the weak link in your supply chain?

Banking imperatives for managing climate risk.

The zero-carbon car: Abating material emissions is next on the agenda.

Will the world’s breadbaskets become less reliable?

CLINTEL goes to the heart of all this darkness, namely that it is based on bogus modeling. To begin with, it is based on the ridiculous IPCC future emissions scenario called 8.5 for short. Here is how CLINTEL puts it:

“As you state, [you] rely on the RCP8.5 scenario of the IPCC AR5 CMIP5 models, inappropriate in our view, as that scenario was developed in AR5 to model a world growing as the then rate of China. That scenario is most implausible, RCP4.5, if any, now being significantly more relevant. Furthermore, in using the Woods Hole Research Centre (WHRC) models, you project reaching a global temperature of 2.3°C above pre-industrial by 2050, with a possible 1.8m sea-level rise by 2100, both inexplicably well beyond the SR8.5 extreme case figures. Under these WHRC models, it is no surprise that your projections for future climate impacts may better belong, we suggest, in the field of science fiction. Your extreme point of view may seriously hurt the reputation.”

So not only does McKinsey use the silly scenario 8.5, they actually go way beyond it! Of course when you are drumming up billions in new business you want a really big drum.

The letter is signed by Professor Guus Berkhout, CLINTEL President. It ends with this concern and challenge:

“We therefore see no climate emergency whatsoever. In addition, we are very concerned of a gigantic misallocation of global economic resources, as your publications seem to suggest, to an exaggerated climate threat. Why does an ethical company such as McKinsey, we wonder, take such an extreme position?

You and your scientific advisors would be very welcome to hold a debate with our world-class scientists. We look forward to your response.”

Professor Berkhout’s message to potential McKinsey customers is: “Be aware that if you adapt your business strategy to the most unlikely climate scenario RCP 8.5, it is most likely you use the wrong strategy”.

McKinsey and Company has been associated with a number of notable scandals including the collapse of Enron in 2001 and the 2007-2008 financial crisis. Given that McKinsey stands to make huge amounts of money pushing these unfounded scary stories, one wonders if fraud is an issue.

Dakota Access Oil Pipeline Clears Hurdle To Doubling Capacity

Illinois approved this week the plan for the Dakota Access Pipeline to double its capacity from 570,000 bpd to 1.1 million bpd, thus becoming the last state along the pipeline’s route to give its consent to the expansion.

Dakota Access, which has seen a lot of controversy since its inception and initial start-up in 2017, now has the approval of all four states through which it passes—North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, and Illinois—to expand its capacity.

While the approval of the Illinois Commerce Commission is seen as a win for the oil industry, the pipeline’s operator Energy Transfer, and the North Dakota oil producers, environmentalists see the expansion of the pipeline – whose operation they still oppose – as unnecessary with the decreased oil demand in the coronavirus pandemic.

“This vital project will bring an additional half a million barrels a day of domestic energy from North Dakota that will be used to fuel our farms, communities and lives in Illinois and across the Midwest. It’s critical we continue to support and expand our nation’s pipeline infrastructure like DAPL to help family budgets and keep our economy moving – especially in this time of recovery from COVID-19,” Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) Midwest Director Chris Ventura said in a statement, welcoming the decision.

“It’s wildly inappropriate to be talking about expansion when the real conversation is about shutting it down,” Jan Hasselman, an attorney for EarthJustice who represents the Standing Rock Tribe against DAPL in the federal lawsuit, told Grand Forks Herald.

In this separate case, DAPL and Energy Transfer are fighting a legal battle after a judge vacated the permit for the pipeline in July, and then a U.S. Appeals Court ruled that Dakota Access can continue to operate while the court considers whether the pipeline should be shut down as ordered by a lower court’s ruling. The pipeline will continue operating at least until the end of 2020 as December 2020 is the earliest time the court will be able to make a decision after reviewing all relevant documentation.

Blow for UK's power supply: National Grid warns lack of wind could plunge Britain into darkness

Britain's electricity could be in short supply over the next few days because of a lack of wind.

Electricity grid operator National Grid warned 'unusually low wind output' and a series of power plant outages would squeeze the network until early next week, leaving it with less back-up power than normal.

National Grid said it would 'make sure there is enough generation' to prevent blackouts.

But the warning will also put pressure on the Government to invest in other power sources in addition to wind, which can be unreliable.

Last night National Grid said there was 'adequate' power for today and that it would keep monitoring the situation over the weekend.

The balance of wind-generated power in the electricity mix will drop to as low as 9 per cent and 10.5 per cent tomorrow and on Sunday respectively, before climbing back up to 51 per cent on Monday, the Energy & Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) estimates.

Wind power has sometimes provided up to 60 per cent of power in the grid.

The UK has more offshore wind capacity than any other country – and power produced from the sector charges the equivalent of 4.5m homes each year.

The ECIU reported that a number of gas plants, such as Cowes on the Isle of Wight and Shoreham, West Sussex, as well as a biomass plant in Lynemouth in Northumberland and at least one coal-operated plant, had seen generator failures.

There are also two planned outages at two of the UK's nuclear reactors, Dungeness, Kent, and Hunterston B in North Ayrshire.

In a tweet, the National Grid Electricity System Operator said: 'Unusually low wind output coinciding with a number of generator outages means the cushion of space capacity we operate the system with has been reduced.

'We're exploring measures and actions to make sure there is enough generation available to increase our buffer capacity.'

It is the second warning from the grid operator in a month. In mid-September it warned the electricity marker that its 'buffer' of power reserves had fallen below 500MW and it could need to call on more power plants to help prevent a blackout. This notice was later withdrawn.

During the national lockdown earlier this year, the network was inundated with extra power.

National Grid had to spend £50million on the second May Bank Holiday weekend alone to pay power producers – including surplus wind and solar farms – to switch off.

It spent almost £1billion on extra interventions to prevent blackouts during the first half of the year and also handed out money to EDF Energy to halve the amount of power generated at its Sizewell B nuclear plant.

Tom Greatrex, chief executive of the Nuclear Industry Association, said the latest warning 'underscores the urgency of investing in new nuclear capacity, to secure reliable, always-on, emissions-free power, alongside other zero-carbon sources'.

Big Australian Windfarm hit by major problems due to faulty turbines and generators

A South Burnett Times investigation has uncovered multimillion-dollar issues at Australia’s largest wind farm project, including the need to repair almost half of the Coopers Gap project

IT‘S billed as one of Australia’s biggest renewable projects, but the South Burnett Times can reveal just six months since the installation of the final turbine, operators are already working to replace critical components in nearly half of the major windfarm’s generators.

Coopers Gap Windfarm, a nearly $1 billion investment in future energy security, was completed just months ago, but already major issues have appeared.

In April, the final blade was installed on the last of the 123 wind turbines at the Darling Downs site, 50km from Kingaroy, which is estimated to have cost $850 million to develop.

But an anonymous source has revealed to NewsCorp that the commissioning process in recent months uncovered multimillion-dollar mechanical issues that have forced operator AGL and construction partners GE CATCON to begin major overhaul works – including replacing an entire turbine.

An AGL spokeswoman confirmed to the South Burnett Times major faults were found by General Electric during testing. “During the commissioning process, rigorous tests were carried out to ensure the long-term operational capability and reliability of each component,” the spokeswoman said.

“However, recent testing by GE has identified that one of their wind turbines will need to be replaced. An exclusion zone has been erected around the turbine to ensure safety.”

The Times was told by the well-placed source that one of the turbine‘s blades – the largest ever transported in Australia, measuring 67m long and weighing 22 tonnes – may be at risk of becoming separated from the turbine.

The source also said “about 50” generators needed to be replaced and there were major component issues just months after the wind farm finished construction.

Both GE and AGL refused to confirm or deny the claim about the turbine blade when contacted, however GE did confirm 53 generators will need to be replaced, due to a single component which the multinational corporation believed could impact the generators’ long-term reliability.

The generators are situated at the base of the site’s turbines – one per turbine – with the remaining 70 generators not requiring the same work to be completed.

“To ensure reliability over the longer term, we are also proactively replacing a component in some of the turbines,” a GE spokesman said. “We have already commenced planning for a repair program conducted in phases to minimise disruption.”

When questioned as to what had occurred that required an entire turbine to be replaced rather than simply repaired, GE did not directly address the question – with the spokesman issuing a statement that mirrored AGL’s own response.

“During GE’s routine inspection and testing, it was identified that one of the turbines will need to be replaced,” he said. “This turbine has been taken out of service while the Coopers Gap project continues to remain operational.”

The South Burnett Times understands engineers are working to determine what caused the serious issue discovered during testing – however the nature of this issue remains unclear.

The Times has been told the 400m exclusion zone around the turbine is standard practice and there is no “imminent risk” of an accident at the site. As the public cannot access the wind farm site where the turbine is located, there is no risk to the public.

Neither AGL nor GE responded to questions regarding the time frame or cost of these major repairs.




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