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Labour's energy solution

Nick Butler in the FT reports that Labour's big brains (allegedly) Ed Balls has come up with an innovative solution for the impending energy crisis: a new layer of bureaucracy in the shape of an energy security board.

Details are, according to the FT, "sketchy" and I'm certainly somewhat uncertain whether a group of environmentalists and Labour party stooges are going to achieve anything beyond the inflation of their own bank balances. Nevertheless, Butler seems to think it's a step in the right direction:

The complexity of the challenge is why a security board is potentially a good idea as part of a much needed renewal of energy policy.

You would have thought that the FT would have understood that when you are in a complex situation, the last thing you need are freeloading bureaucrats.


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Reader Comments (29)

Surely the easiest way of dealing with the anthropogenic energy crisis, is to remove those who created it.

Apr 27, 2015 at 11:22 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Hmmmm, 'much needed renewal' of energy policy? Now where did the precious little dears get that idea?

Apr 27, 2015 at 11:26 AM | Unregistered Commenterkim

Ah.. The politician's answer to everything. Another department/quango.

The day we can refine the use of public servants as a viable fissile material, we will have solved our energy needs forever.

Apr 27, 2015 at 11:29 AM | Unregistered CommenterGeckko

Why not a few layers of "pen pushers"?
Then we will have really low cost power.

Apr 27, 2015 at 12:01 PM | Unregistered Commentertoorightmate

The word security is interesting, potentially a disaster if it just means going for renewables to avoid reliance on those evil overseas fossil fuels, but maybe a glimmer of hope for those who worry about cold, dark windless days.

Apr 27, 2015 at 12:16 PM | Unregistered CommenterMikky

Yet another reason to consider voting for UKIP?

Apr 27, 2015 at 12:17 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoe Public

It would be more sensible just to send out an email to DECC employees that they need to consider all three horns of the trilemma; security, price and carbon dioxide in that order of preference. Having 3 different departments recommending 3 different things because of their limited remit will just give exactly the same policy constipation we've had since the CEGB was abolished.

Apr 27, 2015 at 12:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterJamesG

Another precision fix, God - that's so not funny.

Plus, if, may heaven forfend it! Red Miliband gets in.... how long will it be before the markets panic and the pound will take a fearful thrashing.........IMF on the horizon - see how things go after that, towards a black hole at light speed until the darkness swallows even the light...................

Be wary, be very careful, because if you pooh pooh this idea (energy security board), Unite will send the thugs round to picket y'all.

And democracy weeps because - Len McCluskey will tell you, " er dis is 'ow it is la!"

Apr 27, 2015 at 12:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

A good way for Gaia to become more CO2 friendly is to stop all immigration from the thurd world.
This way, low carbon emittors remain low instead of becoming western high carbon emitters.

Of course this will not "play" well with an important liebour voter block , namely those who make it a business to import more not fewer.

Another low hanging fruit is utera, ie producing western carbon emitters in the form of babies.
The canard that "we need more people to push the wheel chairs of the elderly" is old news: the solution to that is low carbon emitting ROBOTS.

Come to think , most of westminster could be replaced with them, as well.

Apr 27, 2015 at 12:37 PM | Unregistered CommenterVenusNotWarmerDueToCO2

Let's face it, Labour (AND the others, with the possible exception of UKIP) do not have a f****** clue about how electricity is generated and distributed, nor the magnitude of it. They really think a few more windmills will crack it.

It WILL take a major outage - shutting the Tube for instance (Lots Road is long gone) - before these bozos wake up to just how fundamental mains electricity is to life in the 21st century...

Apr 27, 2015 at 1:03 PM | Unregistered Commentersherlock1

Could Labour not erect some windmills in London's Hyde Park?

They probably won't do anything useful.

BUT, the genius recycled innovation would be to fit each one with a treadmill attachment.

Key Benefits would include:

Green Luvvies would happily volunteer to walk round in circles going nowhere, for the good of the planet

Power when needed

London could be self sufficient for energy

Tourists would happily fly in from around the world, to take photographs, of Britain leading the world, in going backwards

Apr 27, 2015 at 1:04 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

I guess VenusNotWarmerDueToCO2 will be voting UKIP, given the lack of facist candidates in standing in the UK.

Apr 27, 2015 at 1:08 PM | Unregistered Commentersteveta_uk

Every NHS and Local Government crisis is answered with yet more levels of management. It really doesn't help and diverts resources from the people who can get things done.

But hey, keep doing the same thing and expect a different result.

A bit like voting really.

Apr 27, 2015 at 1:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterClovis Marcus

I doubt UKIP are any better since most of their politics tends to be of the "I'm not with him" variety. Put them into government and watch them run round in circles wondering which way is up.
Which, en passant. is also a reason for being very worried about the SNP. Apart from making something of a dog's breakfast of running Scotland's internal affairs, their knowledge of and interest in things like defence and foreign policy are about on a par with mine. (On second thoughts I'm not sure they are even that good.)
The prospect of being part-governed by a party that doesn't even plan to use what little brains it has worries the hell out of me.

Apr 27, 2015 at 1:16 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Mike Jackson: UKIP's energy policy is perfectly clear and 100% sound: . This is in complete contrast to the idiotic climate-change-hysteria-driven policies of the other parties.

Your statement that you 'doubt UKIP is any better' and think they would 'run round in circles wondering which way is up' is groundless ad-hominem. UKIP are the *only* party at this GE who know which way is up and aren't afraid to say it.

Apr 27, 2015 at 2:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterChilli

You may not like this energy policy.
You may not have the detail of this energy policy.
But at least it is an energy policy.

This is the first statement by a major party on how to achieve energy security during this campaign.

(UKIP's policy may make sense but they never mention it so it's obviously up for negotiation with Cameron and his Mrs).

Apr 27, 2015 at 2:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterMCourtney

Another layer of bureaucracy; so that's just added another 6-12 months to every single decision relating to energy policy or supply.
'Cos that'll help.

Apr 27, 2015 at 2:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlex

I wholeheartedly agree with this approach, with just one, tiny proviso that should also apply to every other environmental or energy quango.

When attending meetings, participants must sit on exercise bicycles rigged up to an alternator connected to the Grid, AND must provide a minimum 0.5 kWhr renewable energy.

Indeed, the sight of their newly slimmed figures would, I propose, create a demand by ALL government committees for the same requirement.....:o)

Apr 27, 2015 at 2:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterNCC1701E

M Courtney, an energy policy that amounts to a policy of no energy, is on a par with UKIP's immigration policy, and the EU's Fisheries policy. None of them amount to anything.

And the Tory policy of using windmills for shredding birdlife all over the Environment, on the basis that some are migrants, doesn't work either! (even if it is a way to get paid for "green manuring your land")

Apr 27, 2015 at 4:37 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Yes Minister, in the original, Jim Hacker, our hapless hero, was the Minister for Administrative Affairs. The importance of PC (paperclip counters) became enshrined in folklore.

Some of our politicians have seen Administrative Affairs as a euphemism for casual flings with the secretarial staff, and now sit in the House of Lords as a mark of National pride/ridicule

Proud of his previous success, Miliband would want an additional Department for Administrative Affairs, just to look after Energy and Climate Change, and Briony Worthington is already in the Lords, which would save wasted effort and energy.

Apr 27, 2015 at 4:58 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

In talking about energy policy I'd like to scrap the loaded words that we've all been forced to use:

(Clean, green, renewable) versus (Fossil, fracking, polluting, nuclear)

The real distinction is between "fuelled" and "fuelless", don't let greenies get away with nice cuddly names for their favourites.

Apr 27, 2015 at 5:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterMikky

Mikky, for Clean, Green and Renewable, substitute Doesn't Work, Wasn't Meant to Work, and Unreliable, and it all makes sense.

Green Luvvies need an energy policy to match their work ethic.

Apr 27, 2015 at 6:19 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

When I began teaching in a boys Comprehensive which displayed all the symptoms of poverty in the UK some years ago, despite being in the wealthiest borough in the UK , a colleague from SA warned me
'In the UK civil Service, nothing is ever fixed. We both come from cultures where, if we stumble across something that needs fixing, we fix it if we can then move on. But here, if one encounters a problem, the correct action is to write a report and send it in to one's superiors. Having done that, your duty is done and you should carry on. The problem will, of course, persist but must now be ignored. If that is not practical or possible, one should write another report. One should NEVER take responsibility for problems and attempt to fix them.'

Apr 27, 2015 at 9:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlexander K

"I doubt UKIP are any better since most of their politics tends to be of the "I'm not with him" variety. Put them into government and watch them run round in circles wondering which way is up."

And voting for the political parties [liblabcongreen], of whom combined are driving and committed to accelerating the UK truck off the cliff of de-industrialization - on this headlong suicidal plummet towards economic calamity and via the green agenda - makes for a preferential, indeed a superior choice?

Excuse me MJ, and politely but on this matter - we are at variance. To my mind, anyone who promises to climb down from the green UK suicide truck and switch it over to fossil fuel efficiency - eternally, gets my vote.

Apr 28, 2015 at 1:27 AM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.
Apr 28, 2015 at 3:26 AM | Unregistered Commenterclipe

"You would have thought that the FT would have understood that when you are in a complex situation, the last thing you need are freeloading bureaucrats."

It is political newspaper. it exists to expand political world.

Apr 28, 2015 at 7:01 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlexS

You may be worried about the SNP, here in Scotland we're already living with their insane policies. One of our 2 big coal-fired power stations is turned off, and the next (the magnificent Longannet) will go off next year. They loons plan then turn off our two nukes.
Renewables? Energy security? Methinks I'll be getting a generator.

Apr 28, 2015 at 8:15 AM | Unregistered Commentermorebeerplease

Balls does talk a load of Balls. He is correctly named.
Typical socialist answer to any problem,

1) borrow more.

2) increase bureaucracy

3) increase costs by 100%

Apr 28, 2015 at 11:16 AM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Marshall

"Labour's big brains"

There's another entry for my Big Book of Oxymorons...

Apr 28, 2015 at 8:47 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

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