Tuesday, May 17, 2022

The British government's heat pump insanity

Heat pump costs soar because Britain's radiators are 'too small'. Radiators take up a fair bit of room as it is. Changing them for ones twice the size has to be quite a nuisance

Homeowners trying to install eco-friendly heat pumps have been left with surprise £30,000 bills after it emerged millions of radiators are too small to work with the new technology.

The Government wants 600,000 heat pumps installed every year by 2028, in line with its “net zero” aims, but the majority of homes may need thousands of pounds worth of upgrades to accommodate them.

Heat pumps need larger radiators to achieve the same heat output as gas boilers, which heat water to much higher temperatures.

Some 99pc of British homes do not have radiators large enough to heat a room on the coldest winter's day, using a low-temperature heat pump, the most common model, according to a Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy study. "High temperature" heat pumps can help fix this but 90pc of homes would still need better radiators.

To heat a home on an average winter's day, 94pc of British households would need to upgrade their radiators if using a standard heat pump.

Gas boilers achieve temperatures of around 70°C, but most air source heat pumps operate at around 35°C to 45°C for the radiator system and around 55°C for hot water.

The Department said the typical costs for buying compatible radiators would be £1,700 for a one to two-bedroom house, £2,200 for a three-bedroom house, and approximately £2,900 for a five-bedroom house. However, this does not include the labour cost of fitting a new heating system.

Some customers have been hit with much higher bills. Michael York, 83, was quoted nearly £30,000 to install a heat pump and replace all his radiators.

Mr York said: "Last year my 19-year-old boiler was making a funny noise and I decided it was time for an upgrade. I looked into a heat pump, because of the Government's interest in them.

"I consulted a heat pump specialist who said the installation cost for a suitable heat pump and changing all the radiators was nearly £30,000. My house was built in 1976, it’s detached, it has cavity wall insulation, and double glazing. It's very well insulated."

Mr York said the specialist told him there were several rooms in his home that would not be able to accommodate radiators large enough to achieve the same heat output as his gas boiler. "The prices have come down and it would now cost around £20,000, but I didn't want to spend that when I could just pay £2,400 for a new gas boiler."


Industry Disputes Biden’s Rationale For Canceling Alaska, Gulf Lease Sales

Industry groups and some Republicans are disputing the Biden administration’s justification for pulling the plug on the offshore lease sale in Alaska’s Cook Inlet, which it said was canceled “due to lack of industry interest.”

Both have argued energy companies and other parties did want the sale to move forward and that the only way to gauge interest in the sale properly would have been to hold it and allow energy companies to offer bids.

The Interior Department confirmed late Wednesday it would not move forward with work on three offshore lease sales, one for acreage in Cook Inlet and two off the Gulf Coast, the last outstanding sales outlined in the current five-year offshore leasing program.

Kara Moriarty, president and CEO of the Alaska Oil and Gas Association, said the administration’s reasoning on Cook Inlet was “disingenuous” and pointed to comments she filed with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in December in which she expressed her organization’s support for the sale.

“We certainly said, ‘Hey, we support having a lease sale move forward,’ and as a trade association, we don’t put out any comments unless, obviously, the majority of our members support that,” she told the Washington Examiner.

Moriarty also echoed the response of Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK), who criticized the cancellation and said “only holding a lease sale” would ultimately illustrate companies’ level of interest.

“If you really want to know if a company is interested in picking up leases, hold the lease sale. There’s nothing that says you can’t hold it and then nobody show,” she said.

Moriarty also likened competition over acreage to a game of poker in which energy companies are often not prepared to “show their hand” and reveal publicly whether they intend to bid or not beforehand.

The Interior Department did not disclose how it determined the level of industry interest was lacking, but it wasn’t a novel justification, something the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management noted in an update to the lease sale’s webpage published Friday.

The Interior Department canceled a lease sale for Cook Inlet in 2011 for the same reason. Then, in 2017, the department went on to award 14 tracts covering 76,615 acres in the inlet.

As for the two Gulf lease sales canceled Wednesday, the administration said it will not move forward because of “delays due to factors including conflicting court rulings that impacted work on these proposed lease sales.”

The administration is currently engaged in several active lawsuits affecting the leasing program. It is appealing a ruling delivered last June that enjoined the government from implementing a blanket pause on both onshore and offshore leasing.

Judge Terry Doughty, a Trump appointee, ruled in that case that federal law requires the government to hold lease sales, and administration officials have cited that ruling as a justification for moving forward with lease sales since.

In another case, the American Petroleum Institute is appealing a federal judge’s ruling that threw out the lone offshore sale carried out last year.

The National Offshore Industries Association argued that the sum of litigation should not have disrupted the sales. BOEM cut the process off before completing draft environmental reviews for either sale.

“They absolutely could have done the environmental work for those lease sales,” said Erik Milito, NOIA’s president. “There was absolutely nothing that held them back when it comes to the court decisions, or the underlying statutes when it came to getting this work done.”

The Biden administration has been under competing pressures in recent months regarding how to move forward on the leasing program with oil and gas prices high and rising to record levels.

Environmental groups have been lobbying the administration to keep President Joe Biden’s campaign promise of ending drilling on federal lands and waters as a way to mitigate climate change, arguing the government has the discretion to hold no sales at all.

Some are also making the case that the Interior Department’s next, and currently delayed, five-year plan for the offshore program, which the department must finalize in order to hold lease sales, should simply be published without any lease sales in it.

Meanwhile, Republicans and some Democrats want Biden to make more lands and waters available to curb prices and reduce price shocks.

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Joe Manchin (D-WV) said the three cancellations are “just awful.”


India: Greenpeace’s Dream Of A Solar-Powered Village Fell Apart In Just A Few Years

A Greenpeace-funded solar energy project in India has become completely defunct just years after it was built, according to local media reports.

Eco-activist group Greenpeace brought solar power to Dharnai, India, in 2014, constructing a green micro-grid it said would make the tiny village “energy independent” and a model for the rest of the country to follow.

Eight years later, reports indicate the solar micro-grid is not only defunct, but being used as a cattle shed. The Dharnai venture is only one of many failed attempts by environmental groups, like Greenpeace, to “green” the developing world, according to one of its co-founders.

“It’s the same thing that’s happened a lot across Africa: goody two-shoes comes in and builds them a small solar facility,” CO2 Coalition Director Patrick Moore, who co-founded Greenpeace in the 1970s, told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

“Then, pretty soon the battery wears out and it just doesn’t get repaired and they don’t know what to do because they don’t have any expertise,” said Moore, who departed Greenpeace in the 1980s after he said the group lost touch with its original purpose. “There’s plenty of those stories.”

In July 2014, Greenpeace celebrated the project, claiming that it made Dharnai the first village in the state of Bihar to run entirely on solar energy. The project quickly collapsed, though, as batteries became overused, causing the entire grid to fall into disrepair, environment-focused news outlet Mongabay-India reported in December.

Today, paddy straw is piled up around the project, which is now being used to shelter cattle, according to Mongabay-India. In addition, solar panels are covered in dust and rods supporting the green tech are heavily-rusted.

“When this solar farm went defunct, it was primarily because of two reasons,” Vijay Jayaraj, an India-based researcher at the environmental group Cornwall Alliance, told TheDCNF. “One is the cost of the power, and the second is reliability.”

“In 2016 and 2017, when the village was finally connected to the grid — and the grid was powered by coal power plants — they understood that coal power is much more reliable,” he continued

Jayaraj added that non-governmental organizations like Greenpeace often market renewable energy alternatives to remote villagers with little or no electricity in developing countries. Such groups are able to avoid heavy scrutiny since the areas they approach are in dire need for power.

“These programs and solutions don’t talk about the sustainable nature of the programs, the longevity of the programs, what happens when the technologies age or how much of the current demand it could meet,” he said. “So, by pushing these questions under the carpet, these programs have started to take root in a lot of developing countries. India is no exception.”

While some villagers expressed optimism about Dharnai, India, solar facility in 2014, others protested it saying they didn’t want “fake” electricity, according to Mongabay-India. At the time, Nitish Kumar, the chief minister of Bihar, applauded the project and told locals that coal power would diminish over time while solar power would always be around.

“In the first three years, it worked well and people were using it. But after three years the batteries were exhausted and it was never repaired,” Ravi Kumar, a local shopkeeper, told Mongabay-India. “So now, while the solar rooftops, CCTV cameras and other infrastructure are intact, the whole system has become a showpiece for us.”

“No one uses solar power anymore here,” he continued. “The glory of Dharnai has ended.”


‘Green New Deal’ plan will cost NYers ‘hundreds of billions’ in energy bills: official

New Yorkers will have to pay “hundreds of billions of dollars” in higher utility bills due to the state’s “Green New Deal”-inspired plan, according to a top energy regulatory official — who accused lawmakers of hiding the true cost of the bill.

John Howard, former chairman and current member of the state Public Service Commission, claimed former Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Democratic-run legislature never leveled with the public on the costs associated with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act approved in 2019.

Howard, during a PSC session Thursday, said local pols “totally obfuscated” the costs of the plan because the sticker shock would have made the initiative unpopular.

The law, which Cuomo signed in a ceremony with Al Gore at his side, requires New York to slash greenhouse emissions by 40% by 2030 and no less than 85% by 2050 by transitioning from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources, such as hydropower, solar and wind. The state Climate Action Council, meanwhile, is charged with developing a plan to put the state on a path toward zero carbon emissions.

Lawmakers, Howard said, refused to directly vote to raise taxes to pay for the capital investments required to develop cleaner energy alternatives to fossil fuels — and left the PSC to be the fall guy.

The commission — which regulates power utilities — was tasked with approving rate increases to pay for the capital investments required to comply with the new green-deal inspired law.

Con Edison and other utilities will pass on those costs to customers.

“I hope my colleagues on this commission understand that responsibility falls to us exclusively — to the tune of hundreds, not a couple — but hundreds of billions of dollars,” Howard said during last week’s PSC meeting.

“The legislature, either through its silence or total lack of actions, has given this commission nearly the exclusive responsibility to reach into New Yorkers’ pockets to pay for the CLCPA mandates,” he said.

Howard also warned that the unfunded mandate comes at a time when “our entire state economy is shaky … the upstate economy is shakier.”

Other PSC members — former state Sens. David Valesky and John Maggiore — also warned about relying solely on utility rate hikes to pay for New York’s green new deal.

“The cost of the state’s conversion to green energy far exceeds the ability to finance [solely] through electric bills,” Maggiore said.

Aides to Gov. Kathy Hochul and a key lawmaker who helped craft the green energy law slammed Howard as an alarmist.

“It is incorrect and irresponsible to suggest New York ratepayers will be on the hook for the entire cost of our state’s transition to clean energy,” said a spokesperson for the co-chairs of the Climate Action Council, state Department of Environmental Commissioner Basil Seggos and NYS Energy Research and Development Authority CEO Doreen Harris.

“What is indisputable is that the cost of inaction is more than $100 billion higher than the cost of investing in a clean energy future,” the spokesperson added.

“This is why the efforts by the Climate Action Council are critical now to not only keeping energy costs low but also to increase job opportunities estimated at 200,000 jobs by 2030 and improving the health of New Yorkers.”

Assemblyman Steven Englebright (D-Suffolk), a co-author of the CLCPA, said Howard is a scaremonger.

“It sounds like he’s a bit of an alarmist. He’s got a point of view that is biased toward the status quo. The status quo is costing us billions of dollars,” said Englebright, the state Assembly environmental conservation chairman.

He noted more frequent violent storms fueled by climate change, for example, are causing massive damages to inland as well as coastal areas of the state.

Hochul recently sided with green new deal booster Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) by killing two carbon-burning natural gas projects in Queens and upstate Newburgh. But the governor is getting flak from union allies for pushing to ban the use of gas for new building construction.


My other blogs. Main ones below

http://dissectleft.blogspot.com (DISSECTING LEFTISM )

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH)

http://australian-politics.blogspot.com (AUSTRALIAN POLITICS)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com/ (TONGUE-TIED)


No comments: