Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Don't worry about the energy

At the moment there's less worry about oil prices than usual, so let's just have a few bullet points about high energy prices and how they influence the British:

- Oil. At first this looks bad as we are being told that we will soon be importing the stuff. However a high oil price is good for us. This is because our oil fields are expensive to run - the workers are paid first world wages and the stuffs out at sea. This is not southern Sudan. If there is a high oil price then many of the wells that have been effectively mothballed are sudenly economic and can be brought back into production. If the high oil price is sustained then we are actually going to be even more fortunate as the capital investment that goes into madcap ideas such as oil tars and shale oils is going to find its way here. Then we'll be exporting the stuff.

- Coal. It's been uneconomic for some time, but we have still got loads and loads of it - and high energy prices will make it economic again. Get some carbon scrubbers and pay a desperate third world country to take the scrubbed CO2 (Colorado after the dollar's fallen). Of course we should forget Kyoto, but we should have done that any way.

- Nuclear. Sigh. The most secure form of power and we're too stupid to see it. Cheap as well if you get rid of all the overblown safety measures when they close the things. And you've got enough plutonium to make a couple of bombs to nuke Belgium.

- Wind Power. Yeah right, do you think I'm a hippy or what? Too expensive and I'd rather have a nuclear reactor in my back garden.

Market intervention rarely works in quite the way you expect, and that goes for invading - or defending from hostile takeover - oil producers. If the oil price goes up then let the market work it's stuff. Alternative energy sources, conservation and higher priced oil sources will deal with this perfectly well.


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