Friday, 8 January 2010
The Coldest Night, The Energy Gap, Then We Zoomed To Norwich!
TBTE 08/01/10 or more accurately 'the road to the beach this evening'!
We took advantage during this current icy blast, of a break in the snow this afternoon to get artistandtartist jnr. back to university, so the three of us got in the car and zoomed up to Norwich. I was very apprehensive and almost didn't go as driving conditions have been lately described as 'treacherous' on the news, fortunately the snow didn't start again until we were almost home. We talked for the whole journey about loads of interesting stuff...not just the driving conditions, although the current weather did seem to be the dominant theme.
Now this raised the thorny issue of the current fragility of our energy supply, it seems that we really are down to the wire when it comes to our supply of energy, and this situation has simply been waiting in the wings until we experience a prolonged 'cold snap'. Now if we add to the equation all the new build housing thats been springing up were really heaping on the pressure to an energy supply that's already frankly at full stretch. The really big dilemma for us in the U.K. at the moment seems to me to be how to bridge the gap that will inevitably widen between getting our renewable sources of energy on stream and when our own fossil fuel resources run out (about 15 years I think is a reasonable estimate). And thus reduce our reliance on buying in large amounts of our energy from other nations who may whimsically jack the price up...or worse still, turn off the tap completely. At this point in time (several people on Mersea will hate me for saying this) nuclear generators seem to be looking a more attractive solution than they did twenty years back. I'd much prefer that there were a more user friendly alternative, but I'm not at this point persuaded that renewables will come close to filling our energy gap.
Now all of this kind of dovetails into another thread of our conversation we had today about Transition Culture and its pro's & cons, and I intend to get on my soapbox about this subject soon too, when time will allow.