The Battle for Britain has begun.

Posted by kcumming — 12 February 2013 at 4:15pm - Comments
All rights reserved. Credit: Greenpeace

Was it when Chancellor George Osborne called us the environmental Taliban? When he announced he wanted to build 40 new gas-fired power stations and turn the UK into a “gas hub”? When he was revealed in our undercover investigation as trying to dismantle the Climate Change Act? When he rolled out the red carpet for fracking companies across England? Or when he vetoed a 2030 goal in the Energy Bill for carbon free electricity?

It’s difficult to pin point exactly when we knew we had a battle on our hands. And we don’t use the B word lightly. But it’s become increasingly clear that much of what we’ve fought for over the past decade is under attack. And the stakes could not be higher- for our climate, our economy and our countryside.

The Energy Bill currently before parliament is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to clean up our power sector and create low carbon jobs. Along with hundreds of business leaders, UK companies, investors and civil society groups, we want to see carbon-free electricity by 2030.

Osborne has fought (and so far managed) to keep the 2030 target out of the Energy Bill, but all is not lost. Two MPs from each end of the political spectrum - Conservative Tim Yeo and Labour's Barry Gardiner - have tabled a series of 'green jobs' amendments to put the target back into the bill. Yeo took a strong stand when he said, "I will not stand by and watch the wrong decisions being made on energy policy."

Neither will we. Osborne’s dash for gas would put our legally binding climate commitments at risk. It would mean gas plants and fracking sites all over England and investment in renewable energy side-lined. It would leave the UK perilously dependent on expensive, imported gas from places like Qatar. As Osborne’s own father-in-law admitted last year, this over-reliance on volatile regions for our energy is liable to leave us “up shit creek”.

Before the last election, David Cameron came to the London Greenpeace office, stood in our warehouse and waxed lyrical about how he’d champion green energy if elected. Now his chancellor is trying to dismantle one of the greatest legacy's of the UK’s climate movement.

Don’t let all your amazing work be undone. The climate - and Britain - needs you. Tell your MP to support clean electricity and green jobs now.

It's essential that Osborne is defeated. He is just one of the many obstacles that need to be overcome in our battle to roll back industrial civilisation. Never will so much be owed by so many to so few.

I find the first two replies interesting. One talks of rolling back industrialization. What is unsaid is the billions of dead following de-industrialization.

The other is spam, for a video game.

I find the better, more humane message, in the latter.






We are constantly asailed by eco enthusiasts such as yourselves to campaign for a "greener" and a promised land free from rising temperatures by reducing our industrial carbon dioxide footprint. But what the west does is meaningless, previous agreements such as Kyoto that achived nothing testify. China has increased (and is increasing) it's CO2 output by the equivalent of the US output in just 6 years and will do so again in the next six, and again and again. India and other developing countries although of lesser volume show the same exponential rising curve compared to the relatively flat levels from the developed world.

What you are campaigning for is to stop the equivalent of a dripping tap while the floods outside are streaming in through an open door Any sensible response would be to provide practical solutions to the open door rather than wallowing in pointless self righteousness by pointing out that you are doing all you can to stop a drip.


It doesn't matter if the transition form fossil fuels to Renewables
is slow or fast, what matters is the total accumulated mass of carbon
dioxide in the atmosphere. Be that as it may, the faster we can increase
the energy efficiency off all energy-using systems and the faster we
can provide the human population with a renewable, non-polluing
alternative the better. We need to drasticly reduce to amount of Carbon
Dioxide we are releasing into the atmosphere if we don't want to see an
estimated 6 degrees celcius rise in average tmperature by the end of the

To put that into context the cambrian extinction which
caused 95% of all organisms to die out was caused by a 4 degree celcius
rise in global temperature.

This Climate change, however, unlike
climate change events of the past, and there have been many, is one  in
which we have the choise of wether or not we go through this. 

it would be far better, for all if we decided not to allow the climate
to get catastrophically hot and seriously endanger life and civilisation
as we know it.

Where is the alternative argument? You can't ask for support without showing facts and figures from both sides, genuine facts which include the large number of the green lobby jetting round the world to conferences. Or perhaps that's a myth, not counting a very good friend of mine who does just that. Convince me and you'll have my support. You have the facts, I have a vote.

FrankSW where is your evidence that harmless trace gas and plant food CO2 has anything to do with global mean temperature? Temperature which has not increased measurably this century while we spew out large increases in C02? Addiction to crisis is an illness. The planet is doing just fine, and even if it wasn't you have no power to change its course.

Where is the alternative argument?

We already have all the tools, apart from one, to build a 100% renewable sustainable world with the latest solar, wind, wave and hydro power along with sustainable biomass waste and residues solid, liquid and gasious fuel production .  

This missing link is energy storage, to store the energy created by wind at night when not needed or in high volume wind areas or weather, solar in the summer when we create to much in the daytime, and wave when the tidal times dont match withour peak load needs.

We need a simple , safe, sustainable, renewable technology with a small footprint energy store system that will hold power for up to 24 hours,  or a little longer, with very little loss of energy in storage. 

Presently we don't have this storage system, but it is coming very soon.

How do I know?

I have the answer, I will create it.

Can the politicians see that they are doing wrong. Look at what happened at Blackpool with Fracking. Stop playing with the planet. We are destroying it. Must get rid of the tories and get someone in who cares for the enviroment.

@ London Calling

I'm flabbergasted.  How can you ignore the opinion of 99.99% of experts who tell us we are on a path to catastrophe?  How can you ignore the evidence in front of your very eyes; ever more extreme weather, droughts, wildfires, loss of ice and virual extinction of polar bears.  How can you be so blind to these things?

Green Dream

Any reasonable person would be blind to your catastrophes because none of them are happening. Polar bear numbers have increased from around 5000 in the 1950's, to at least 25,000 today. In fact the latest study concludes the numbers may now have reached 32,000.

As for your claims that droughts, wildfires or any other manner of "extreme weather" is on the increase this is not supported by any of the indices published by the official agencies. These show the very opposite, that we are in a period of reduced extremes (ACE index, Palmer index)

As for your claim about 99.99% of experts telling us we are "on a path to catastrophe" you live in a curious parallel world. Such claims only weaken the case you are attempting to make and attract ridicule.

Greenpeas in bed with arch-capitalist Yeo, the guy who is making millions out of so called 'Green Energy?' For example wind farms that destroy our economy, jobs, landscapes, health,well-being,  that exacerbate flooding, vastly increase energy bills, create abject poverty for so many, great wealth for Tim Yeo, Cameron's family, the Duke of Beaufort, et al, and that are anything but green given the amount of concrete and other toxic elements in their construction, and the need for realignment of roads, dismemberment of road structures, rebuilding of bridges, constant damage to roads and properties en route, the creation of gridlock in areas like Mid-Wales, the unacceptable cost of public inquiries to small local populations who were told they lived in a democracy. Yes, jobs are created, but in foreign countries whose energy companies control most of the UK's energy resources - the main jobs created in the UK for the renewable sector are those in propaganda, PR and surruptitiously disposing of dead bodies of birds killed by wind turbines.

To be heading for or actually ''up shit creek '' is bad enough , but it seems we haven't got a 'paddle'. For paddle sub: direct and sustained campaign , to keep us all from being '' up to our necks in shit creek''. The Public need to know the facts. I think an advert campaign is called for                               Yours  David A Laing.

John B

you need to try and be more open minded and shut out the big oil propaganda that you seem to have fallen for hook, line and sinker.  Do some independent research and you will soon see the truth.  It's quite obvious that temperatures have risen dramatically and that man is the cause. Get real.

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I Cannot account for the hypocrisy of some Eco Lobbyists but I
can give you some perhaps usefull facts and figures:

wind turbines will pay back the energy taken for their
construction, transport, manufacture 20 to 25 times over in their
operating lifetime.

As a comparison, Coal will repay itself, in energy 8 times and
nuclear will repay itself in energy roughly 9 times over the life
time of the stations.

The cost of onshore wind power is about 3.2p per KWh and off shore
wind power is at about 5.5p per KWh compared to the national average
of 3.0p per KWh, however this figure is most likely to increas as our
energy mix in the UK is roughly 90% finite sources and 10% renewable
net non polluting (infinite (as long as the sun and earth continue to
exist)) resources like Wind Power, Solar power Hydroelecricity, Tidal
Power, Geothermal.

I do not class Coal, Oil, Natural and manufactured gas, Bio fuel
and Nuclear, because they are either only potentially renewable,
totally finite and net polluting.

There is a statistic that the wind turbines are only 30% efficient
or only work 30% of the time. This is an erroneous use of statistics.

30% is simply the average load factor of a wind turbine, which is
how much energy that turbine is producing at any one time divided by
the energy it could make in optimum conditions. A thermal power
plant only has a load factor of 37% on average and as for the
efficiency of the wind turbine they operate on average at 80-85%

They also have another major benefit over thermal generators which
is that Wind turbines convert their energy source into electricity
with far less loss of energy by heat.

As for dead birds, wind turbines account for only 0.01% of avian
deaths caused by humans.

(Thanks to the Centre for Sustainable Energy for their report
Common Concerns about wind power for the above stats)

Concerning Global temperature rise, the arctic Ice sheet melting:

As published in Geographical Magazine December 2012, This
september of 2012 saw Arctic Ice Sheet extent down to an all time low
of roughly 3.5 million square kilometres compared with 7.5 in 1985
and 5.9 in 1995.

The graphs of mean global temperature between 1860 (the advent of
the industrial revolution) and the 21st century show a
steady increase in temperature, these figures directly correlate with
the graphs of Carbon Dioxide concentration in the atmosphere.

All green arguments come down to one missed point...

There are too many people on the planet.

Until we realise this and act on it, environmental problems will never go away.

From the fish in the oceans, to the CO2 in the atmosphere, the melting icecaps, the near extinct tigers.  Its all because of overpopulation.

Agnes Morrice

When you are attempting to convince someone you have a genuine valid argument it would be helpful to your point to let the target audience know where you found your 'facts'. I checked a couple of official sources (Turbine Manufacturers Group data, ROC data) and unfortunately none of these come even close to backing up your claims.

Before subsidy paid to onshore wind it is officially around twice as expensive, on avarage, as gas turbines. Much as I would wish it to be the other way round there is nothing I can do about the relative costs, but it does not help your case to quote false statistics. I don't have an axe to grind either way, certainly no connection to the fossil fuel industry.

I will however be more than happy to debate any point if you link to where your 'facts' can be found.

Green Dream

I have told you where you can you can find Government (not evil oil) statistics on drought and extreme weather statistics on tornados and hurricanes etc. They are not difficult to find. I know the data does not fit your claims

Perhaps you can explain exactly what "independent research" you did which supports your claims. I am perfectly happy to change my mind if you can produce evidence to support the points you claim.

I'm not sure why you think I would have any connection to, or be influenced by, "big oil". I would treat anything said by "big oil" with the same degree of scepticism as any other source. That is the definition of an open mind.

Jon A,

You have hit the nail on the head, overpopulation is the root cause of the earths problems.  We have got into the state because we have been exploiting the earths resources in an unsustainable way.  Luckily, with the current trajectory, towards more sustainable energy production and use of resources I think you will find that the overpopulation issue resolves itself.  It simply won't be possible for the current hordes to exist with limited power availability and much simpler lifestyles.  Its going to be a difficult journey but I'm sure we'll get there in the end.  Here's to the future :-)

John B,

You need look no further than the hockey stick graph produced by Michael Man, an esteemed scientist if you want independent proof of global warming.  It's the clearest possible demonstration of man's destructive effect on the planet.  Only someone in complete denial of reality could ignore this.

John B,

You need look no further than the hockey stick graph produced by Michael Man, an esteemed scientist if you want independent proof of global warming.  It's the clearest possible demonstration of man's destructive effect on the planet.  Only someone in complete denial of reality could ignore this.

John B,

I have given the sources of my "Facts"  for wind turbines and arctic sea Ice Sheet melting. If you bothered to read my comment.

indeed the souce of the sats I used ifor wind turbines is publicly availible at: if you wish to consider it.

Please remember something also before the use of the phrase "false statistics" ; there are lies, damn lies and statistics. 

It is true that Wind Power is under subsidy, but then again, and this is a point that is often forgotten: so are all forms of energy production. The other point I would make in direct response is to say that a single Wind turbine will repay all energy put into it's creation and maintennance 20 to 25 times over it's operating life whereas the typical Thermal generators will only repay themselves energy wise less than half that number of times over an operating lifetime. 

For future reference the name is Angus spelt with an A, an N, a G, a U,and then an S, in that order.


...and on the subject of the ice sheet extent figures, these are from a graph published in Geographical, The official Magazine of the Royal Geographical Society, and I would say that that seems a reasonable claim for validity.

My respects.

Green Dream

You appear to be a bit behind the times. If you care to check even the IPCC AR5 has disowned the Mann Hockey Stick Graph. Although the document is still at draft stage you will not be seeing it anywhere in the final AR5.

I guess that's science for you. Application of phoney statistics can't stand the test of scrutiny.

I apologise, John B for my condesending tone, in correcting your spelling of my name. I am actually impressed that you spelt my surname correctly, few do!

Angus Morrice

Apologies for getting your mane wrong.

I'm afraid the source of your statistics, coming as they do from a renewables lobby group, are not reliable. You need to compare LEVELISED costs to get an accurate figure.

There are sevaral sources of LEVELISED costs which more or less all agree on the cost of generation but probably the best, and most unbiased, source is from the Royal Academy of Engineers. Their members work in ALL sectors of the energy generating industry and therefore have no axe to grind.


 Thankyou for the feedback, I will go and have a look.

John B,

So, you have to rely on a draft version of as yet unpublished report in order to provide a response.  I'm afraid you're going to have to up your game if you want to persuade anyone that the incontravertible evidence of human caused climate change is invalid.

Green Dream

I'm afraid it's you who will have to up your game. From your response it is pretty obvious that you don't know what IPCC AR5 is.

To enlighten you IPCC AR5 is the latest in a series of reports produced by the IPCC SUMMARISING all the latest peer reviewed research by independent scientists. Unfortunately it also contains quite a lot of grey literature from some other organisations which you may want to research to origin of. Good luck.

Green Dream

Don't forget to check on the latest independent figures for polar bear numbers after you have checked the souces of information for IPCC AR5. 5,000 polar bears in the 1950,s remember.

@FrankSW - 17 February 2013 at 8:44pm

There is a solution, it is called Graphene.

It has mind boggling energy applications.

It is made from carbon and can be made as a thin foil.

100% biodegradeable when the correct materials are used.

IT works as solar panels. Capacitor. Battery. infra red and night vision. 1000 Times more conductive than pure copper metal. Stronger than diamond. Transparent foil. Is simple enough to make using a dvd cd burner and the correct process. Can be made to any shape or size. 99% efficient light to electrons. Batteries made of this stuff can power hydrogen engines that run on water.


Can be made at home by anyone. for a few £££. It is exactly like burning a cd or dvd.

Anyone can print out a battery cum solar panel for free energy. Works on a quantum level 

Type graphene into google and check this

@  Les Johnson please watch the above video, cause I think you will find it a lot better than a spam video. 

Have those talking about the decline of the polar bear population, ever worsening weather, drought etc., really researched these claims? Anyone can find research of good provenance on the Internet these days which be bunks all these.  So why say such things?

Saving the planet!  We are all agreed that some natural resources will one day run out and alternatives will need to be found, but this is for mankind to be saved not the planet. 

Well said Sensible Sid.

I'm as keen as anyone to see conservation of species and important habitat but some comments on this site are just plain screaming mad. Greenpeace has lost much of its credibility by forgetting about true conservationist causes and becoming involved in too much silly activities like CO2/climate change. The climate has always changed from the day of the formation of the planets. The scientific evidence for the catestrophic danger from additional CO2 is simply not there in empircal evidence, only in models.

Just been reading this debate. Have to agree with JonA's  23rd February comments regarding overpopulation, which is the common denominator for so many of our problems and the main thing we need to be tackling. Also, it is blatantly self-evident that if we continue to expand we will soon run out of space to grow food or to seek solitude. It's time that we stop being ostrichs and act before it is too late. Delay will just lead to wars over resources and starvation on a grand scale.

people are sooooo annoying when they start to talk about renewable energy so YOLO and screw the world for some other generations not ours.

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