So it looks like Cuadrilla has stuck big in Lancashire. Loads of Natural gas. Some reports say enough to meet our energy needs for the next 50 years. (see here)
A great many of the Great Green disciples of Huhne are lining up to whinge and moan about extracting this gas. But really they ought to do their basic research first and then think things through. (Oh, how I wish!)
Let us see how fracking for gas relates to their BIG idea. aka Wind Turbines. Wind turbines are, after all, truly BIG. Large in size but unfortunately minuscule in ability.
We know, (and they know) all about intermittency and unreliability etc. often expounded on in this blog, I won't go on about it any more here than just to say that even the most inflexible Luddite supporter of these things has to confess that they need considerable backup for when the wind doesn't blow.
Because Wind Turbine output is so unpredictable and massively variable over short periods of time, the forms of backup are limited. The backup is mainly limited to Open Cycle Gas Turbines, although some Closed Cycle Gas Turbines can be used at a pinch for less violent changes in output.
What do you power OCGT or even CCGT on? Yes. That's right. Gas.
So if (God forbid) we carpet our country with these useless wind turbine monsters, where will the gas come from for the necessary spinning reserve?
Or perhaps we could just get the whole population chewing on Mung beans for a fortnight and then plumb them into the nearest OCGT.
Those two suggestions are far more lucid and coherent than anything you will find coming out of the Green party or their comrades.
Of course, Fracking needs to be controlled and monitored. But the ridiculous, ill informed and politically biased charade of mortified concern that is being pumped out by the Greens and others is simply absurd.
Now, what about my back yard?
Well, I live in Purbeck in Dorset. We currently have the largest on-shore oil field in the UK. It is quite likely that the Kimmeridge shale will also hold a considerable amount of gas.
Over many years, the oil field has performed impeccably. There is no reason to assume that any gas extraction would be any different.
If, you are going to build gas power plant you might as well use it efficiently. Then you can simply dispense with the wind turbines all together.
Actually, I would rather have nuclear plant, then you don't need gas. (at least for electrical generation). But either way we can dispense with the fairy-land lunacy that is the wind industry.
So, if it is a choice between carpeting Purbeck with (as some suggest) 42 huge and useless wind turbines or have a few fracking gas extraction wells, give me the wells any day.