Just when David Cameron needs it least, one of his former ministers has opened a devastating second front on the Coalition’s tattered administration.
Owen “Minister of Sound” Paterson has urged the repeal of what is arguably the most damaging, wrongheaded and suicidal piece of legislation in recent parliamentary history: the 2008 Climate Change Act.
The Act was the creation of Labour leader Ed Miliband during his stint in the Gordon Brown administration as Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change. It was devised by a green activist, Bryony Worthington – formerly of the hard-left, anti-capitalist pressure group Friends of the Earth, subsequently ennobled as Baroness Worthington. And it was endorsed by David Cameron, while in opposition, as part of his “Vote Blue, Go Green” strategy which culminated his announcement – delivered at Greenpeace’s London HQ, shortly after the last general election – that he intended to lead the “greenest government ever.”
This was a costly mistake. Just how costly, Christopher Booker explains here:
[The Department of Energy and Climate Change’s] declared aim at an estimated cost of £1.1 trillion, is the almost complete “decarbonisation” of our economy. Astonishingly, this means that, before 2030, the Government plans to eliminate almost all use of the fossil fuels we currently use to generate 70 per cent of our electricity, to cook and heat our homes and workplaces, and to power virtually all our transport. They want all our existing coal- and gas-fired power stations to close.
Out will go petrol-driven vehicles, along with all gas-powered cooking and central heating. These are to be replaced by such a massive switch to electricity for heating and powering our vehicles that it will require a doubling of our electricity needs. Much of this is to come from “renewables”, such as wind turbines; most of the rest from new nuclear power stations – although, after 2030, new gas- and coal-fired power stations will again be allowed, on condition that all the CO? they emit is buried in holes in the ground (what is called “carbon capture and storage”, or CCS).
In order for this crackpot scheme to work, Booker goes on to explain, the UK taxpayer will be compelled to spend £360 billion building 90,000 giant bat-chomping, bird-slicing eco-crucifixes – 85,000 more than we have at the moment. To put it another way, we will have to build 2,500 wind turbines every year for the next 36 years, swamping an area of the British landscape the size of Scotland. Apart from being physically impossible – we would have to be putting up wind turbines eight times faster than we are at the moment – it would be environmentally devastating, not just to the millions of birds and bats killed by the turbines, but also to the swathes of hitherto unspoiled countryside which would be turned into an industrial zone. It would, furthermore, significantly drive up the costs of energy, placing huge burdens on both private and business users, as well as making the UK economy less competitive.
Paterson was perfectly aware of the scale of the problem during his stint as Secretary of State for the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA). Much of his time there was spent heroically trying to resist the swathes of green legislation being urged on Britain by the European Union, by his rivals at the Department of Energy and Climate Change, and by environmental campaigners from the WWF, Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace. His reward from David Cameron? To be booted out of his job at the last cabinet reshuffle because Cameron could no longer bear the flak he was getting from the green lobby and wanted to promote someone more pliable and emollient.
This is a move Cameron will surely come to regret.
Read the rest at Breitbart London
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