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Showing posts with label energy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label energy. Show all posts

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Energy Tariffs

I always find this a hassle. WHY do we have to have such confusion over suppliers and tariffs? I am not one to change suppliers to get a better deal as the prices usually go up to match within months.

Call me old fashioned but I'd prefer ALL energy supplies to be nationalised (gas, electric, oil, wind etc) so the customer rather than a few shareholders benefit. It seems odd that something we ALL depend on is in private (profit motivated) ownership where the first responsibility is to shareholders rather than customers. Surely in all forms of energy, the customer should be the number 1 priority?

I was very impressed in Iceland 2 years ago: garage prices were the same everywhere in the country whether in towns or out in the wilds. You knew you were always getting the best prices for petrol or diesel. Simple.
How much easier it would be if we had a national energy supplier offering all customers the very best tariffs? They say competition is "good" but I question this for essentials like energy. Surely when it comes to domestic gas, electricity or oil we all want clear tariffs with the lowest costs together with security of supplies? How can this be so in a market driven economy? We are trading the needs of customers against the dividends and share values for a few. This cannot be right or fair.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Nuclear Fusion

For over 50 years researchers have been struggling to make the dream of relatively clean, nuclear fusion energy generation a reality. It has been a long and uphill struggle and at times the chances of succeeding seemed low: there were just too many technical problems to overcome. At long last there are some hopeful signs that the technological breakthroughs are almost there. Even if sustained nuclear fusion is achieved soon in research environments, it will be many years before this translates into commercial scale nuclear fusion plants. Nonetheless I am very hopeful that within my lifetime we may see the first nuclear fusion test reactors built and commercial reactors in place within 30-40 years. The changes to the world's energy situation as a result of this will be immense: raw materials needed are plentiful and inexpensive, radioactive waste will be negligible and immense amounts of low cost energy should be possible.  Let us hope that we all invest in the research and commercialisation of nuclear fusion rather than waste resources on trying to extract the last fossil fuels from the ground.