Fracking, Emissions and Energy Prices

Gas produces 60% less CO2 emissions than coal. It is also intrinsincally more versatile and far, far less costly to human society. The price of gas in the USA (due to an newly adopted extraction technique called fracking) is collapsing. This is the price of gas in the USA over the last year.
(Forbes article HERE - with graph for prev year from when you read this)

This is the graph on the day of the post

In fact due to a massive adoption of fracking, the USA has managed to markedly reduce it's carbon emmissions while simultaneously rebuilding it's economy. The USA is now, for the first time in 100 years a net exporter of hydrocarbons. They have made great strides to the American Holy Grail of energy independence. The USA is actually winning back industry due to it's low energy cost. The reduction in emission due to the adoption of gas for energy generation has buried any possible so-called "renewable" contribution in the noise.

Today, wind obsessed Europe, politically populated by fracking denialists languishes in perpetual economic crisis. Even Germany, which has been the biggest benificiery from the Euro Zone, (to the cost of just about every other Euro Zone member) suffers with a huge energy price penalty compared to USA. Although Germany at least, has managed to grow its economy,
it is significantly less than the USA. Just to rub salt into the wound the Germans are busily building Lignite burning coal power stations to replace their perfectly good (but highly unfashionable) nuclear plant. Emissions can go only one way.

Fracking can possibly provide us in the UK with similar cheap energy independence. It could provide us with the necessary backstop until someone in government gets enough balls to build the necessary nuclear infrastructure.

But until someone in authority actually gets up off their arse and starts getting a proper and detailed analysis of the fracking potential in the UK we will continue sliding down the slippery slope to where in a few years time there WILL be power cuts.

Looking at the bunch of comedians that pass for a government in this country, I think it is time we all started stocking up on candles.


Anonymous said...

Love the graph - especially the way the little hand moves the ball up and down - it reminds me of that game where the bell rings if you touch the wire.
a non mouse

BilloTheWisp said...

Yes I agree. Especially as you go from left to right and it is all down hill and getting cheaper. Normally I just use screen captures but this bit of javascript from Forbes is well.... just more fun.

BilloTheWisp said...

While I am sad at having to disappoint my little non mouse friend (see comments above) and ruin his/her fun, I have changed the graph to a static screen capture taken on the day of the post. The gas price in the USA is low and has stayed low. Of course this means that as the yearly window goes on the fall looks less dramatic as we lose the reference to the gas price before fracking kicked in. Consequently someone reading this in a years time may wonder what all the fuss was about.
So my little non mouse, wipe away your tears, I am sorry to ruin your fun. But I thought it more important that we all understand the massive impact the gas price collapse has had on both USA energy prices and USA carbon emissions.
love and kisses