So what happened today? Some of those who were hoping for a big bang of government support, permission for Cuadrilla to go ahead and a release of the resource estimate might think today a damp squib. I think it’s the first in a series of fire cracker announcements. First we had today’s news, which while incomplete, is still incredibly positive. Next we need some bones on this, starting with permission for Cuadrilla to return to work and, ASAP, an actual release of the figures. Then we also need to know that 14th Onshore Licensing Round, where every hydrocarbon company on earth wants to invest in British onshore oil, will happen as soon as possible.
On the resource estimate, I could write a book on why they weren’t released. And, let me assure you, I will. But they certainly weren’t released due to DECC and the British Geological Survey not finding any resource. The true reason is prosaically hilarious, and one day I’ll write about the reasons why. I know people accuse me of having a big mouth sometimes, but this blog is only the tip of iceberg of what I could print. Future generation will laugh and roll their eyes. In the here and now, we can point out this gas has been around for 450 million years, what’s another few days or weeks. But given the disastrous economic performance of Plan A, one would think that George Osborne would remember: The next election must take place by May 7 2015. That’s 883 days or 126 weeks and a day. Oops, by the time he reads this, it will be only 882 days and 126 weeks even. If he thinks Plan A is such a success that he can be in no particular rush towards a clean and prosperous future, so be it. He may find the future (or that of his MPs), not so cheery on May 8 2015.
Today’s story is outside the energy industry, an entire yawn. No wonder three national TV News shows cancelled on me almost simultaneously. But having said, that we can learn a lot from parsing this announcement:
GAS WILL SUPPORT DECARBONISATION OF THE ELECTRICITY MIX
To many readers here, the headline is so obvious we forget how the exact opposite has been policy. Until this week, natural gas, shale or otherwise was just another evil carbon fuel perpetuating the problem, enriching the Koch Brothers and Nigel Lawson ( I don’t go in for that Lord stuff, John Gummer) while poisoning the earth via underground explosions, pin cushioning the entire country when we weren’t quaking in our beds after our fiery shower. At least until this week that was the narrative FOE, Greenpeace the Co-op and WWF were pushing. These groups, and green hypocrites like Business Green (who won’t print my stuff because I can’t pay them), frequently cited DECC and Ofgem to support them. Here’s DECC only last week:
Continue reading 126 Weeks: UK Progress towards Shale Gas