Post-Renewables Reality: Nuclear Power Generation Easy Solution For Energy Starved World

Europe’s great wind drought has focused attention on the unassailable fact that wind power is an utterly meaningless power source.

The demand for electricity is, always and everywhere, a ‘here and now’ kind of thing. Households and businesses couldn’t care less if there’s a roaring gale and plenty of wind power at 2 in the morning. But the absence of electricity at the point when power consumers (of all shapes and sizes) need it, is always noticed rather keenly – the experience of freezing or boiling in the dark during mass blackouts tends to collect in the subconscious.

The response to Europe’s wind power debacle has been a series of backflips that would do a Russian gymnast proud.

Despite lots of bluff and bluster from Boris Johnson about his country’s all wind ‘powered’ future, Johnson is now openly committed to building nuclear power plants, including a fleet of new small modular reactors; all with an unparalleled urgency.

Under the thrall of creeping Green-Marxism, the French have been throwing millions of euros in subsidies at wind and solar and, simultaneously, attempting to wind back its enviable nuclear power generation capacity.

But, all of a sudden, the French are back in the nuclear power generation game, with a vengeance (laid out in the article appearing later in this post). Much to the horror of the Climate Industrial Complex, which has been backing hopelessly unreliable wind and solar, from which it profits so handsomely, for nearly 20 years.

Never underestimate the French government to do what is in the best interest of France.

However, the same can’t be said of Australia in what passes for political leadership. The only country in the G20 to not take the benefit of nuclear power – its Federal Parliament slapped a legislative ban on nuclear power plants back in 1998. Australia has never operated a nuclear power generation plant, despite its abundant uranium reserves and despite the fact that it is the world’s third largest exporter of uranium.

In the lead up to the next Federal election (due in April 2022) Australia’s Liberal PM, Scott Morrison has openly decried any future for nuclear power generation, notwithstanding his claim that Australia will be able to meet a net-zero carbon dioxide gas emissions target by 2050. How Morrison intends to do so is all smoke and mirrors.

Signing up to a net-zero target and not backing nuclear power generation amounts to national economic suicide.

The Liberals, being mis-led by Morrison, were once conservatives in the vein of America’s Republicans, these days they’ve taken on the appearance of the hard-green-left, pandering to renewable energy rent seekers and crony capitalist keen to profiteer from scams like ‘green’ hydrogen and carbon dioxide gas capture and storage.

Alexander Downer, a Liberal from South Australia – who was the Foreign Minister from 1996 to 2007 – is one of those old school Liberals who simply cannot understand why Australia maintains its ban on nuclear power generation.

Here he is being interviewed on Sky News by Chris Kenny.

Nuclear is the ‘world’s easiest solution’ to carbon-free baseload power problem
Sky News
Chris Kenny and Alexander Downer
21 October 2021

Former Foreign Affairs Minister Alexander Downer says nuclear energy is the “world’s easiest solution” to the problem posed by trying to reduce carbon emissions while continuing to generate baseload power.

“There is increasingly a view that wind power and solar power is going to be too slow to be implemented and is too unreliable to be baseload power,” he told Sky News host Chris Kenny.

“And bearing in mind around 80 per cent of all of the world’s energy is generated from fossil fuels; we can already see the effect of cutting back on fossil fuel production and that is very steep increases in gas prices, oil prices, petrol prices and so on.

“And probably the only medium-term effective way of dealing with baseload power, if you’re not going to use fossil fuels, is nuclear.

“So you can see by the way big increases in uranium prices at the moment as more and more leaders are starting to come to terms with that being a very real prospect.”
Sky News


Chris Kenny: Now let’s get onto net zero by 2050. I just want to show you a little bit of what Boris Johnson has had to say on this issue this week.

Boris Johnson: We’re making big bets on hydrogen, we are making bets on solar, and hydro, and yes, of course, on nuclear as well, nuclear for our baseload. We are making such massive progress that we now pledge to switch entirely to green power generation by 2035.

Chris Kenny: Alexander, I think it’s telling that he talks about bets on hydrogen and bets on solar, but he knows that nuclear is an investment there’s already 20% of U.K. power coming from nuclear. They know if they can expand that the critical point is, whatever the costs, it is reliable.

Alexander Downer: Yes. There is increasingly a view that wind power and solar power is going to be too slow to be implemented. It’s too unreliable to be base load power, as you quite rightly say, and bearing in mind around 80% of all of world’s energy is generated from fossil fuels that we can already see the effect of cutting back on fossil fuel production and that is very steep increases in gas prices, oil prices, petrol prices, and so on. How do you deal with this? Probably the only medium term effective way of dealing with base load power, if you’re not going to use fossil fuels, is nuclear. You can see by the way, big increases in uranium prices at the moment as more and more leaders as starting to come to terms with that being a very real prospect, but in a way that is the world’s, if I could put it this way, easiest solution to continuing to generate base load power, but at the same time, reducing CO2 emissions.

Chris Kenny: We only have to look at France to see that. They get 70% of their electricity from nuclear sources – so virtually emissions free, and they’ve been exporting so much of that energy to other countries who have been in strife like Germany and back into the U.K. even.

Alexander Downer: The German government, everyone says what a wonderful chancellor Angela Merkel was. One of the ridiculous things she did when Fukushima melted down, or it’s not quite the right term, but closed down. Its response to the Fukushima accident was to close Germany’s nuclear power plants. Although, Germany continued to import nuclear power from France. As a result, of course, Germany has become increasingly dependent on imported gas, which is a fossil fuel, and importing gas from Russia. They have to have energy from somewhere or close the country. That’s what they’ve done. It’s been a huge mistake in Germany and it was done entirely for political reasons. In this space so much is being done for political reasons, but ultimately the price of energy is going to catch up with the politicians. As the price, particularly of fossil fuels continues to soar, that is going to become a very major political headache.

Chris Kenny: So, Australia is the only G20 country where nuclear energy is actually illegal. It’s been legislated out of the options – that happened while you were in parliament actually. Do you think it’s time to get rid of that federal legislative ban?

Alexander Downer:
Obviously, it’s completely absurd. It’s such mindless policy-making and of course, that’s right. You can just repeal the legislation. It’s not built into the constitution or anything. What is changing is nuclear power technology. These new small-sized nuclear reactors are now being developed both in the United States, I think in Japan, by Mitsubishi and in the U.K. by Roll Royce. These small reactors are likely to transform the capacity of countries to use small-scale nuclear power stations. It will make it politically easier for governments to do it and of course, it will provide that baseload, but clean source of energy.

Chris Kenny: Thank you so much for joining us, Alexander.

Alexander Downer: It’s a pleasure.
Sky News

France’s Macron commits to restarting nuclear power development
10 November 2021

President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday announced France would restart the construction of new nuclear plants in order to better meet growing energy and environmental challenges.

“To guarantee France’s energy independence and achieve our objectives, in particular carbon neutrality in 2050, we will for the first time in decades relaunch the construction of nuclear reactors in our country,” Macron said in an televised address to the nation on Tuesday.

Speaking as the COP26 climate summit continues in Glasgow, Macron vowed that France would also continue to develop renewable energy.

France, which derives the majority of its electricity from nuclear power, is currently building a new third-generation EPR nuclear reactor in Flamanville in Normandy.

But work on the site, which began in 2007, has still not been completed. French energy firm EDF submitted a feasibility study to the government this spring for a programme to build six new reactors.

“If we want to pay for our energy at reasonable rates and not depend on foreign countries, we must both continue to save energy and invest in the production of carbon-free energy on our soil,” Macron said.

Macron’s announcement comes as the head of the UN nuclear agency said last week on the sidelines of the COP26, he saw atomic power playing a key role in balancing climate concerns and the world’s energy needs.

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.

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