Theresa May Could Create Jobs, Slash Bills and Boost Our Post-Brexit Economy If She Gets Fracking

IMAGINE if our new Prime Minister Theresa May could wave her wand and achieve the following miracles within five years.

Create 500,000 new jobs, slash our electricity bills, restore British manufacturing, boost our economy, make us richer and stop our energy supplies being held to ransom by Putin, the Arabs, the French and other foreign regimes.

Fracking
GETTY IMAGES
Fracking has the potential create jobs and boost Britain’s economy after Brexit

Well, the good news is she can, right now, and doesn’t need magic to do it.

All she needs to do is get fracking — the marvellous technology that extracts shale gas and oil from the ground.

Fracking has worked wonders for the US economy and could do the same for ours.

Shale gas is just as valuable and useful as the natural gas we’ve been harvesting from the North Sea for decades.

The only difference is that, because it’s mixed up with rock sediment, it used to be impossible to recover.

Read the rest at the Sun.

WATCH: Emma Thompson Stages Eco Protest; Sprayed with Manure by Irate Farmer

Once feted as a great actress, director and screenwriter for films including Nanny McPhee, Harry Potter and her Oscar-winning adaptation of Sense and Sensibility, Thompson has since become better known for her environmental activism – famed for such outrageous stunts as her bold decision to name her daughter Gaia (after the Earth Goddess).

On this occasion, Thompson had gone to a field in Lancashire to stage a protest with her sister Sophie on behalf of Greenpeace. The two women dressed in aprons and baked cakes – one depicting a wind turbine, the other a “solar lemon cake”.

Read the rest at Breitbart.

Fracking: Why Have We Allowed the Left to Make It a Dirty Word?

“Fracking” was the second most popular UK search term in the “what is?” category on Google in 2014.

(The top ten were: Love; Fracking; Gluten; FGM; Lupus; Anxiety; Twerking; Instagram; Gout; Bitcoin).

What this tells you is that capitalism in general and the fracking industry in particular is losing the argument.

How does it tell you this?

Because what it instantly suggests is that “fracking” is a controversial process.

And indeed fracking is a controversial process. But only because it has been tarred that way as a result of several years of very successful propagandising by the green movement, which the fracking industry and its allies in government have proved hopelessly inadequate at countering.

Read more at Breitbart London.

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  3. Andrew Breitbart’s War Comes to Britain
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Shale Gas Is Rearden Metal

For my summer holidays I have been mostly reading Atlas Shrugged. Ayn Rand has her faults but, boy, was she prescient.

One of the things she foresaw was the current nonsensical, dishonest, canting campaign against shale gas. In Atlas Shrugged it takes the form of Rearden Metal, the miracle technology which is going to transform the US economy if only the progressives will let it. But of course, Rand’s fictional progressives don’t want Reardon Metal to succeed any more than their modern, real-life equivalents want shale gas to succeed.
Why not? For the same rag-bag of made-up, disingenuous reasons which progressives have used to justify their war on progress since time immemorial: it’s unfair, it uses up scarce resources, it might be dangerous. Rand doesn’t actually use the phrase “the precautionary principle.” But this is exactly what she is describing in the book when various vested interests – the corporatists in bed with big government, the politicised junk-scientists at the Institute of Science (aka, in our world, the National Academy of Sciences or the Royal Society), the unions – try to close down the nascent technology using the flimsiest of excuses.

Here’s an excerpt from the book. (The story so far: in an ailing economy brought low by the sclerotic regulation of the bloated state, a dwindling band of entrepreneurs try to stick up for free enterprise. One of them is Hank Rearden who forges a new kind of metal, stronger and lighter than steel. But his rivals don’t like it, and unlike Rearden, they have friends in DC. Soon an unhelpful report is produced by a special committee of the National Council of Metal Industries…)

They said Rearden Metal is a threat to public safety. They said its chemical composition is unsound, it’s brittle, it’s decomposing molecularly, and it will crack suddenly without warning […..] They’re experts, though, the men on that committee. Top experts. Chief metallurgists for the biggest corporations, with a string of degrees from universities all over the country.

You may have noticed something similar going on with the anti-shale gas campaign. All those “experts” – many from the oil or renewables industries, no doubt with a string of degrees from universities all over the country – who’ve worked so effectively to delay shale gas exploitation in Britain with their ingenious excuses: our shale plays aren’t the same as America’s [true: the Bowland shale, for example, is significantly deeper]; our denser population makes it harder to extract without disruption or environmental damage [what? And wind turbines aren’t guilty of doing the same, only with far less obvious benefit?]; that the cost of gas won’t significantly drop [yeah, that’s really persuasive that one. We’ve got trillions of cubic feet of gas on our doorstep but when we drill for it and vastly increase available supply it won’t have any effect on price??].

Then, of course, there are those five big lies about shale gas so brilliantly nailed by Matt Ridley. The one about polluted aquifers, the one about methane, the one about excess water use, the one about the “hundreds of chemicals” the BBC tells us are pumped into the ground, the one about “earthquakes”: none of them is credible – yet you hear them being spouted by “experts” and green campaigners and concerned citizens all the time. Well, no wonder those citizens are concerned. When they hear some “authority” given airtime on the BBC and coming up with the usual spiel about earthquakes and water contamination, they not unreasonably expect that that person has been chosen because they know what they’re talking about. It never occurs to them that these people might either be liars or green zealots beyond all reason or paid advocates for the massively well-funded and well-advanced anti-fracking campaign (which has, I’d estimate, a good hundred times more to spend on its propaganda than the pro-fracking campaign does).

And so the poisonous meme spreads from corporate liar to greenie activist to useful idiot to gullible prat to Home Counties Tory voter. Suddenly, everyone thinks they know fracking is a bad thing. Even the Church of England now feels able to chip in its tuppenny ha’penny’s worth, though on God knows what evidence. Faith in Gaia, presumably.

Again, Ayn Rand foresaw all this. Swelling the ranks of the anti-Rearden-Metal protesters are all sorts of unlikely pressure groups – especially after Rearden Metal is used to make the sleepers on the new, fast, efficient Rio Norte railway line.

“I don’t like the resolution passed by the convention of grade school teachers of New Mexico” said Taggart.

“What resolution?”

“They resolved that it was their opinion that children should not be permitted to ride on the new Rio Norte Line of Taggart Transcontinental when it’s completed because it is unsafe.”

Ah yes. The convention of grade school teachers of New Mexico: of course they’d know. Just like Prince Charles knows. And Natalie Bennet and Caroline Lucas of the Green party knows. And those bright, clued-up sparks in the Diocese of Blackburn know.

Perhaps they gained their expertise from that experty expert Josh Fox the maker of Gasland. Because he’s reliable; he’d never just make stuff up, would he?

Related posts:

  1. Ayn Rand’s books are deliciously anti-statist, but her philosophy is borderline Nazi
  2. Watermelons v the Shale Gas Miracle
  3. ‘Imagine there’s no shale gas…’
  4. Don’t let the Watermelons kill the Shale Gas Revolution

5 thoughts on “Shale gas is Rearden Metal”

  1. borat says:26th August 2013 at 4:34 amyou shoul shave yr head mate – someone’s got be honest with you
  2. borat says:26th August 2013 at 4:34 amyou shoul shave yr head mate – someone’s got be honest with you
  3. Colin Brogan says:3rd September 2013 at 6:50 pmJames the more I read you the more I`m convinced that your`e a nut case, a flat earther.
    Seeing that you are a supporter of fracking, question, would you live next to a drill site?

    1. cicero666 says:8th September 2013 at 3:16 pmI would, rather than a turbine – mainly because shale Gas is actually useful.
  4. cicero666 says:8th September 2013 at 3:23 pmGreat ! I would not choose to live next to it, but wow these things are actually useful. They don’t protest endlessly against everything and collect their money for their causes from addled members of the public. They pump OIL out of the ground, and it is very useful. Fuels and feedstock for the chemical industry.

Comments are closed.

Hollywood Fracks Up

Matt Damon of the Film Actors Guild

Matt Damon’s new film Promised Land sounds really promising.

It’s about a cynical young man sent by a large wind farm company to a lovely village in rural Pennsylvania to seduce the locals with tales of the massive sums of money they’ll make if they sign a deal to have huge wind turbines built on their farmland.

Dollar signs flash in the greedy hicks’ eyes. This wind farm scam is crazy: no way would they have made that much money in their entire lives from just farming. Every one rushes to Damon: “Where do I sign?”

But Damon has begun falling in love with a local farm girl who tells him the truth about wind farms: that they’re ugly, that they kill birds and bats, that they ravage the countryside, blight views, divide communities and make people sick with their Low Frequency Noise.

So instead of bribing locals to have these bat-chomping bird-slicing eco-crucifixes erected in their village, Damon leads the fight back. NO MORE WIND FARMS!

The village is saved and he and the girl live happily ever after.

If only. But the sad truth is that this lame-assed, eco-propaganda movie has nothing whatsoever to do with the genuine threat of wind farms but with the almost wholly imaginary one of fracking. Fracking has been a godsend to the US economy, blessing it with clean, cheap, abundant energy which has enriched those states lucky enough to have big shale gas reserves, created jobs and increased America’s energy security by reducing its reliance on imported gas from unstable countries.

What’s not to like about shale gas?

Well indeed. And this is proving something of a problem for America’s showbiz bleeding hearts. As we saw the other day with the Sean and Yoko story, being opposed to shale gas is the new black for every two-bit celebrity. Like having a “Free Tibet” bumper sticker on your Porsche Cayenne, it shows you CARE. The propaganda machine opposing shale gas development is massive and very well-funded. Its opponents include the Russian natural gas giant Gazprom, the Park Foundation (which since 2009 has spent over $3 million funding ‘grassroots’ opposition to shale gas), and pretty much everyone involved in the renewable energy scam. When you hear people like Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey talking down British shale gas prospects, what you’re hearing is green ideology: the environmental movement loathes shale gas because it renders expensive, environmentally unfriendly “alternatives” like wind and solar essentially superfluous.

But back to that Hollywood problem I mentioned a moment ago. If shale gas and fracking aren’t bad, how the hell do you make a half-way convincing movie in which they are the villain of the piece (aka The monster that needs to be slain: if you’ve read Christopher Booker’s Seven Basic Plots you’ll know what I mean here)?

Answer: with considerable difficulty.

In the New York Post, Phelim McAleer co-producer/director of the forthcoming Frack Nation relates the amusing story of how Matt Damon and co were driven to increasingly desperate measures to make their Promised Land movie look vaguely credible.

I broke the news that “Promised Land” was about fracking and now I can reveal that the script’s seen some very hasty rewriting because of real-world evidence that anti-fracking activists may be the true villains.

In courtroom after courtroom, it has been proved that anti-fracking activists have been guilty of fraud or misrepresentation.

There was Dimock, Pa. — the likely inspiration for “Promised Land,” which is also set in Pennsylvania. Dimock featured in countless news reports, with Hollywood celebrities even bringing water to 11 families who claimed fracking had destroyed their water and their lives.

But while “Promised Land” was in production, the story of Dimock collapsed. The state investigated and its scientists found nothing wrong. So the 11 families insisted EPA scientists investigate. They did — and much to the dismay of the environmental movement found the water was not contaminated.

There was Wolf Eagle Environmental Engineers in Texas, a group that produced a frightening video of a flaming house water pipe and claimed a gas company had polluted the water. But a judge just found that the tape was an outright fraud — Wolf Eagle connected the house gas pipe to a hose and lit the water.

Other “pollution” cases collapsed in Wyoming and Colorado. Even Josh Fox, who with his Oscar-nominated documentary “Gasland” first raised concerns about flammable water, has had to admit he withheld evidence that fracking was not responsible.

These frauds and misrepresentations created huge problems for the Damon/Krasinski script about “what defines us as a country.”

So, according to sources close to the movie, they’ve come up with a solution — suggest that anti-fracking fraudsters are really secret agents employed by the fossil-fuel industry to discredit the environmental movement.

In the revised script, Damon exposes Krasinski as a fraud — only to realize that Krasinski’s character is working deep undercover for the oil industry to smear fracking opponents.

Hollywood is worried about declining theater audiences; it’s blaming the Internet and the recession. But the real problem might be closer to home.

Related posts:

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  2. I’d rather my wife made land mines than worked in the wind farm industry
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‘Imagine there’s no shale gas…’ | James Delingpole

September 23, 2012

Sean and Yoko (pic Ron Antonelli for New York Daily News)

As Yoko Ono’s not-nearly-as-famous-or-talented late husband once almost wrote:

“Imagine there’s no fracking

It isn’t hard to do.

No jobs or cheap energy

The world economy in the poo….”

So how good John Lennon must be feeling right now as he looks down from his heavenly cloud to observe his caterwauling beloved and their ubertalented progeny Sean Ono Lennon carrying on the fight against the Evil Cheap And Abundant Energy Menace They Call Shale Gas. 

The bit John will feel specially proud of, I imagine, is the one where Sean Ono (who describes himself as a “hippie” who “doesn’t condone violence”) Tweets lovingly to one of his pro-shale-gas critics “You are an argument for abortion.”

As a long time Yoko and Sean fan I think there’s a lot more mileage in this. In my mind I see a new, bold, challenging piece of performance art. I see Yoko and Sean, locking themselves in a tower, in the middle of a desert, with nothing but water and baked beans to live on for a period of not less than twenty years. It will be called Gas. Maybe at the end they could even write a song about it.

(H/T Phelim McAleer of Frack Nation)

Related posts:

  1. Don’t let the Watermelons kill the Shale Gas Revolution
  2. Watermelons v the Shale Gas Miracle
  3. Lovelock goes mad for shale gas
  4. Shale gas is Rearden Metal

 

David Cameron’s shale gas lifeline | James Delingpole

June 30, 2012

With shale gas this won’t be covered in bloody wind turbines

David Cameron’s administration is in trouble, on this I think we can all agree. Even my menagerie of house trolls. It’s certainly what I’m hearing from Conservative insiders. “The whole party is on manoeuvres” – someone told me the other day, meaning that every half-way ambitious MP is positioning him or herself to take advantage of the Coalition’s inevitable implosion and Cameron’s almost-as-inevitable downfall. As another Tory boasted to me recently, “If there’s one thing we’re really good at in this party, it’s knifing our failing leaders in the back.”

So what’s Cameron to do? Is there really no way out of this mess for him? Well on current form I’d say definitely no. If Cameron carries on as he is, denying us the promised referendum on Europe, failing to cut government spending by anything like the amount it needs, doing nothing to address the high taxes and overregulation which are stifling small business enterprises, then he is definitely – and rightly – toast and the future will look something like this. 2015 Miliband/monkey in a red rosette wins general election; 2015-2020 Men said openly that Christ and his saints slept. 2020 Alleluia! A red meat Tory gets in, perhaps Boris, perhaps Gove, perhaps someone like Priti Patel…

But there’s still a chance for Dave, if he plays his cards right – and it has just arrived in the form of the new joint report published by the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Royal Society on fracking.

Prof Robert Mair, chair of the panel, said: “The risks associated with fracking can be managed effectively in the UK, provided operational best practices are implemented and enforced through effective regulation.”

Never mind all the health and safety provisos: that’s just a*se-covering. The key point – the only point, indeed – of the report is that Cameron’s government now has the excuse it needs to press ahead and take advantage of the best thing that has happened to Britain since the discovery of North Sea oil: shale gas.

I have written on several occasions about the Shale Gas Miracle. The only thing that stands in its way is propaganda, superstition and vested interests. We saw the latter factor heavily at work in the recent sham Downing Street seminar in which “industry experts” concluded that Britain’s shale gas reserves were smaller than first thought and uneconomical to extract. Except, oddly enough, the company best in the position to comment on this – Cuadrilla Resources – was mysteriously uninvited.

As for the arguments about “earthquakes”. These are overdone, as Matt Ridley is among many to have noted.

It is now official: drilling for shale gas by fracturing rock with water may rattle the odd teacup, but is highly unlikely to cause damaging earthquakes. That much has been obvious to anybody who has followed the development of the shale gas industry in America over the past ten years. More than 25,000 wells drilled have caused a handful of micro-seismic events that can barely be felt.

The two rumbles that resulted from drilling a well near Blackpool last year were tiny. To call a two-magnitude tremor an earthquake is a bit like calling a hazelnut lunch. Such tremors happen naturally more than 15 times a year but go unnoticed and they are a common consequence of many other forms of underground work such as coalmining and geothermal drilling. Earthquakes caused by hydroelectric projects, in which dams load the crust and lubricate faults, can be much greater and more damaging. The Sichuan earthquake that killed 90,000 in 2008 was probably caused by a dam.

So too are the claims about water contamination:

What about groundwater contamination? This too is mostly hogwash. Since there is usually a mile of rock between aquifers and where the fracking happens, contamination from fracking is highly implausible. More than 25,000 wells have been sunk and there has only been a handful of potential contamination events, most of which proved to be natural. Of course, failure of the well casing or surface chemical spills can happen occasionally, as in any industry. But the chemicals used in fracking – less than 0.5 per cent of the solution used to displace the gas – are ordinary chemicals of the kind that you find under your kitchen sink: disinfectants, surfactants and the like.

No, as Matt Ridley goes on to argue in his must-read piece, the real opposition to shale gas is political not scientific. And nowhere is this politically motivated opposition stronger than in the renewables industry which rightly fears that if the truth about shale gas ever gets out – that it’s cheap, abundant AND more environmentally friendly than wind or solar – it will soon be put out of business.

So Cameron has a choice. Either he can continue to ally himself with the Lib Dems, DECC,  big corporations and vested interests (such as the noisome Shell), green activist organisations such as the Guardian and Friends of the Earth, and all those rent seeking toerags taking advantage of the great wind and solar scams – thus guaranteeing massive hikes in energy prices, a continuation of the economic slump and the ongoing devastation of the British countryside with wind farms and the power lines needed to carry their erratic, unreliable, expensive energy.

Or he can take the option which will create real jobs, boost the British economy, lower energy prices, save the British countryside from destruction – and (for those who care about such nonsense) reduce Britain’s CO2 output to boot.

The last one may sound incredible but it’s already happened in the US, as Ridley notes:

The Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Science concluded in February that the surprise fall in America’s carbon emissions – by 7 per cent in 2009, probably more since – was caused largely by a switch from coal to shale gas. “A slight shift in the relative prices of coal and natural gas can result in a sharp drop in carbon emissions,” according to Professor Michael McElroy, who led the study.

Will Cameron seize this heaven-sent opportunity to boost his green credentials AND save the economy AND save the countryside AND win the hearts and minds of conservative and rural Britain AND make his Chancellor a very happy bunny?

Ideologically, I’d suggest not. Remember, this is the man who once famously said: “I’ve just been speaking to Al Gore and he really knows his stuff.”

But the thing you have to remember is that Cameron, above all, is a survivor with a knack of pulling things out of the hat at the last minute. This is the perfect opportunity for him to demonstrate his skill at government by essay crisis. I doubt anything quite so convenient will present itself ever again. Maybe Gove should have a word…

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4 thoughts on “David Cameron’s shale gas lifeline”

  1. Anthony says:6th July 2012 at 10:20 pmDear Mr. Delingpole,
    When did you realize that being a contrarian was your passport to financial gain? I’d love to know.
    How about starting a new cult?

    1. Ewoznac says:6th July 2012 at 11:11 pmAs opposed to say Al Gore’s 8 figure windfall from his climate rantings? An alarmist windfall which would have been billions, if Copenhagen had worked as the organisers were hoping?
      1. Anon says:10th July 2012 at 5:25 amDoesn’t take long for the denial community to start the Gore bashing routine if all else fails.
  2. Martin Lack says:11th July 2012 at 1:43 pmWith any due respect, James, anyone who thinks that Fracking is the answer… is asking the wrong question.

    I know you refuse to accept the nature of reality but anyone who accepts that the ongoing climate disruption we are now witnessing… (presumably you have noticed that record-breaking temperatures in the USA and accept that if it is raining in the UK the Law of Conservation of Mass dictates that it must be failing to rain elsewhere)… Ahem, any such person will also conclude that now is the time to stop mining fossil fuels NOT find new kinds to exploit…

    You know, when in a hole stop digging kind of thing…

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Lovelock goes mad for shale gas | James Delingpole

June 18, 2012

Lovelock: growing wiser with old age

A glorious interview with James Lovelock in today’s Guardian. Essential reading for everyone, greens especially. In it, the inventor of Gaia theory and godfather of modern environmentalism declares that wind farms are hideous, renewables are a waste of space, nuclear power is good, sea level rises aren’t a worry, environmentalism has replaced Christianity as the global religion and that we should all be “going mad on” shale gas, which he considers our best energy hope for the immediate future.

My favourite line, though is this one:

“I’m neither strongly left nor right, but I detest the Liberal Democrats.”

Needless to say the eco-nuts who congregate beneath Komment Macht Frei are going mental. One commenter calls him an “evil bastard”. Several others say they always thought Gaia theory was total rubbish anyway and suggest that at 92 Lovelock has probably started to lose his marbles.

Really? All sounds perfectly sensible to me.

Have a read of this:

Lovelock does not miss a chance to criticise the green movement that has long paid heed to his views. “It’s just the way the humans are that if there’s a cause of some sort, a religion starts forming around it. It just so happens that the green religion is now taking over from the Christian religion. I don’t think people have noticed that, but it’s got all the sort of terms that religions use. The greens use guilt. You can’t win people round by saying they are guilty for putting CO2 in the air.”

Or this:

Having already upset many environmentalists – for whom he is something of a guru – with his long-time support for nuclear power and his hatred of wind power (he has a picture of a wind turbine on the wall of his study to remind him how “ugly and useless they are”), he is now coming out in favour of “fracking”, the controversial technique for extracting natural gas from the ground. He argues that, while not perfect, it produces far less CO2 than burning coal: “Gas is almost a give-away in the US at the moment. They’ve gone for fracking in a big way. Let’s be pragmatic and sensible and get Britain to switch everything to methane. We should be going mad on it.”

If anyone can find serious flaws in this argument, I’d love to hear them. (And no: “James Lovelock is, like, really old, and, like, Gaia Theory sucks. Heh heh heh,” isn’t good enough).

My only criticisms of Lovelock’s recantations are that a) they couldn’t have come a few years earlier (they would have been a lot braver – and more devastating – when the global warming craze was at its peak and that b) they seem to have been prompted at least partly by self-interest.

The move, he says, has been forced on him. Three years ago, he received a heating bill for the winter totalling £6,000. His age means he has to have the heating on full in his poorly insulted home and, with his disabled son, Tom, living in a house next door, his outgoings on fuel rocketed. Damp winters on the edge of Dartmoor were taking their toll, so in recent years he has overwintered in St Louis, his wife’s hometown in Missouri. The experience altered his attitude to the politics and economics of energy.

Could he really not see where green energy policies (inspired partly by his doomsday predictions in books like The Revenge of Gaia) were leading until he was socked with his first whacking great £6,000 heating bill? If so, then it strikes me as both a woeful failure of imagination and a lack of clear thinking. High energy bills, after all, are no accident. They are result of a very deliberate strategy by environmental pressure groups to make energy bills more expensive in order to force everyone to reduce their energy usage. Of course, the people this hits hardest are the ones for whom reducing energy usage is not really a viable option: the old and inform, many of whom have been driven into “fuel poverty” by the greens’ well-meaning attempts to save the world from the illusory threat of ManBearPig.

Still, better late then never, eh?

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One thought on “Lovelock goes mad for shale gas”

  1. Herkinderkin says:26th June 2012 at 6:01 amHeh heh. Reminds me of Germaine Greer. She too, recanted somewhat as she aged. And like Lovelock’s change of heart, hers got naff-all coverage from the mainstream media.

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George Osborne and the Budget of Meh

Osborne is not stupid…

From George Osborne’s Budget speech:

Renewable energy will play a crucial part in Britain’s energy mix – but I will always be alert to the costs we are asking families and businesses to bear.

Environmentally sustainable has to be fiscally sustainable too.

The Carbon Reduction Commitment was established by the previous Government.

It is cumbersome, bureaucratic and imposes unnecessary cost on business.

So we will seek major savings in the administrative cost of the Commitment for business.

If those cannot be found, I will bring forward proposals this autumn to replace the revenues with an alternative environmental tax.

Gas is cheap, has much less carbon than coal and will be the largest single source of our electricity in the coming years.

And so my RHF the Energy Secretary will set out our new gas generation strategy in the autumn to secure investment.

I also want to that ensure we extract the greatest possible amount of oil and gas from our reserves in the North Sea.

We are today introducing a major package of tax changes to achieve this.

We will end the uncertainty over decommissioning tax relief that has hung over the industry for years by entering into a contractual approach.

We are also introducing new allowances including a £3 billion new field allowance for large and deep fields to open up West of Shetland, the last area of the basin left to be developed.

A huge boost for investment in the North Sea.

If this is the best Gideon can do it’s no wonder the markets have responded with a yawn of supreme indifference. This isn’t a Budget for growth. It isn’t a Budget for the squeezed middle. It’s a Budget of meh.

Osborne is not stupid. (At least not totally so). He knows damned well that renewables are a hopeless waste of space and money. He also knows as the second bit intimates that Britain’s abundant shale gas supplies are by far our best hope for a secure, clean, cheap energy future.

Unfortunately, he faces at least two major problems. One of them is the Guardian/green/Lib-Dem/BBC nexus, which is being given carte blanche to continue with its mendacious, junk-science claims that “fracking” and shale gas production represent some kind of major environmental threat. Last night’s lamentably misleading coverage of the issue last night on BBC Newsnight was a case in point. Nick Grealy, explains here why it was so bad.

The other problem is that though in private Osborne can sound as red-meat a conservative as Maggie Thatcher in her prime he entirely lacks her cojones.

It really, really, really isn’t difficult explaining why renewables are a disaster area and why shale gas and nuclear are our only hope of keeping the lights on and the economy alive. If Osborne needs a few tips may I recommend an excellent book. No, not Watermelons though obviously I highly recommend that one too. I mean Power Politics by Michael J Economides and Peter C Glover. A good starting point might be the section headed Ten Fracking Things Everyone Should Know. And then maybe The Myth of Viable, Industrial-Scale Renewable Energy.

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