Race for Wind is partly driven by the assumption that we wind need a vast increase in electricity. This is driven, in the main, by a belief that all cars will become electric in the future. Although there are other options, this is the perception with the corridors of power. Electric Vehicles were expected to reach the level of 100,000 in London but only 2,313 of all types, including milk floats, are currently operating in the City. The GLA fleet has fewer than 50 compared to the Mayor’s ambition of 1000 by 2015. Boris wants to make London the electric vehicle capital of Europe. Of yes, another Vanity project. Problem is that they don’t actually work very well. A maximum range of 100 miles is heavily reduced by having the heater on. Air-con is a no-no. Load the family up and a load of prams, picnics et all and you may possibly make it to Chessington Zoo, more likely to spend the day on the North Circular, but you ain’t going to get back that day. It takes about four minutes to fill up a tank of petrol but many hours(c.10-12hrs@10amps) to recharge a battery. Three thoughts. Could this be why road side cafe, supermarkets and motorway
services are ‘fining’ people from staying over two hours. Takes longer than that to recharge a Leaf; more money in Tesco’s bank! If EVs don’t pay road tax and there is no fuel tax on electricity, how long before road pricing takes away the financial “benefits” of electricity and sting us all with massive hikes in taxes under the green umbrella. How much electricity will be needed when everyone gets home in the evening, turns on the kettle, television and lights AND plugs in their electric cars. No wonder they have plans for tens of thousands of off-shore turbines. Problem is no one told them that often the wind drops in the evening. It strikes me that some one didn’t learn their sums before they did the Economics Degree, or was it a PPE. With a government subsidy of £5000 per car, a limited battery life and the cost of a new normal car to replace them, one does conclude that these are not even the economics of primary school. I think we would have been better of if someone had worked out our future energy needs and means of attaining them on the back of a fag packet! A final point of note, the only minister that I ever saw getting in an electric car in Downing Street was the un-lamented Chris Huhne and one might consider that, had he driven an electric car in the past, speeding fines would have been the least of his worries.
note: North Sea oil is still only 50% used and new drilling techniques are still offering new opportunities. De-carbonise? At what cost?