Tag Archives: dependency on fossil fuels

Record Profits For Drax, As They Maximise Subsidies


By Paul Homewood

h/t Dave Ward

A green power firm was accused yesterday of ‘playing the system’ to dodge hundreds of millions of pounds in payouts to consumers.

Drax has long drawn criticism from campaigners who say its claims of producing ‘renewable’ energy from imported wood pellets are exaggerated.

They also point out that it is one of Britain’s biggest carbon dioxide polluters. And it has now been accused of manipulating the Government’s subsidies regime during the energy crisis triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

It means households have lost out on as much as £639million since April last year, according to the news service Bloomberg.

‘It’s a racket,’ said Tory former minister Jacob Rees-Mogg. ‘Drax seems to have played the system while shipping wood from Canada to the UK to burn, which is not environmentally friendly.’

The firm’s taxpayer-backed power plant near Selby in North Yorkshire, which burns wood pellets to produce electricity, is at the centre of the row. As part of the Government’s attempts to reduce use of fossil fuels, one of its biomass units has received £1.4billion in green subsidies since 2016, which are paid for through consumer energy bills.

Under the subsidy deal agreed with ministers, Drax’s earnings at this generator are capped once electricity prices are high enough for it to comfortably make money without subsidies – and any extra cash is returned to bill payers.

Last year household bills and the price of electricity soared after Russia attacked Ukraine.

But Drax halted production at its biomass generator for weeks at a time, meaning it did not have to give money back to consumers, Bloomberg reported.

How £1.4bn in subsidies has led to record profits

Drax has received £1.4billion since December 2016 in subsidies from energy consumers to make it profitable to fuel its Unit 1 generator at its power plant with biomass.

The wood pellets burnt there are part of a bid to reduce the UK’s reliance on fossil fuels. The deal, which was signed in 2014, contained a safeguard that meant if electricity prices rose enough that the Unit 1 generator could make money without subsidies, Drax would have earnings capped.

The difference between the agreed price and the market price for electricity would be returned by household suppliers to consumers who would see their bills reduced. But when power prices rocketed last year following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the firm decided to slash output from the Unit 1 generator, sometimes shutting it down for weeks at a time.

Instead, it used its other generators which were not subject to the earnings cap and thus could make more profit from higher electricity prices. This meant billpayers lost out on an estimated £639million in potential bill reductions but the company’s actions were not illegal based on the agreement.

Drax also decided to sell some of the unburned wood pellets on the global market when prices were high, helping it post record profits of £731million last year.


This is not quite the whole story. As I understand it, Drax have been selling power over the last year at a lower price than the assumed market price for CfDs. As a result they would have to pay back more under CfDs than they would actually have been earning.

Where they have been playing the system, however, is by maximising output on Unit 1, which is registered for CfD, when market prices were low, and now maximising output on the other biomass units which are subsidised by ROCs when market prices are high.

The latter units, of course, receive a fixed ROC subsidy of about £55/MWh, on top of the market price. It is therefore more profitable to switch generation to these when market prices are low. With a market price of, say, £100/MWh, Drax is able to earn £155/MWh on these units.

The CfD strike price for Unit 1 is currently £132.47/MWh.

Conversely when market prices were low three years ago, they were able to maximise profits by switching generation from the ROC units to the CfD one.

The switchover can be seen from data from the REF:

The RO units load factor increased from 44.9% to 56.2%, between 2021/22 and 2022/23 (4 months only – April to July 2022)

In contrast, Unit 1 loading fell from 63.7% to 32.4%.

The increase in RO output over a full year will earn about an extra £160 million in subsidy.

All perfectly above board and eminently sensible of course.

The real problem is that Drax is subsidised at all, as subsidies always distort the market.

What is very intriguing though is the Mail’s comment about high prices for wood pellets, a natural consequence of high gas prices.

It shows that biomass is not immune from global fossil fuel prices. And it says a lot when Drax is better off selling pellets on the world market than actually selling electricity!

In short, biomass is not only a highly polluting way of making electricity, worse than even coal, both in terms of CO2 and real pollutants. It is also extremely expensive.

The climate scaremongers: The day the Earth didn’t catch fire

From conservativewoman

By Paul Homewood

YOU probably saw stories last week claiming that Thursday July 6 was the hottest day on Earth in the history of human civilisation. Climate scientists said that the global average temperature was precisely 17.23 deg C. Yes, not 17.22 or 17.24C.

Some went as far as to claim that it was the hottest day for 125,000 years.

Naturally the BBC’s Justin Rowlatt attempted to trick the public into thinking that because we had some sunny weather last month, the whole world must be burning up. 

The idea that we can measure the world’s temperature to a hundredth of a degree is of course ridiculous. Indeed the very concept of a global temperature is unscientific, because there is no such thing.

The calculations behind this claim are, you won’t be surprised to learn, based on computer modelling. The models go back only to 1979, when satellite data became available. This was a time when there had just been three decades of global cooling and a massive expansion of Arctic sea ice. It is little wonder that temperatures have increased since.

Prior to the satellite era, much of the world had little or no reliable temperature data, so we have no idea at all what temperatures were then, particularly in the early 20th century and before.

It is summer, so inevitably some places are hot. But the map of temperature anomalies behind the claim tells a totally different story to the one peddled by the BBC. Across the world as a whole, there is the usual mix of above and below temperatures:


The only exception is around Antarctica, where, as Climate Reanalyzer explain, weather patterns in the southern hemisphere have brought warmer air than usual. Because polar regions are so dry, a small change in heat produces a large swing in temperature, whereas it requires much more energy change to produce the same size swing in temperatures in the mid-latitudes. This is because water has a much higher heat capacity than air. Think, for instance, of the Sahara Desert, and how temperatures fall away dramatically at night because the dry air holds so little heat there.

Although average global temperatures may have increased because of the warm air brought to the Antarctic, the overall heat content of the Earth’s atmosphere has not changed at all.

As for the claim that it is now warmer than any time in the history of human civilisation, this is self-evidently bogus. There is an abundance of evidence that the world’s climate was much warmer than now for most of the last 10,000 or so years since the last Ice Age ended.

Studies of treelines, tree rings, ice cores, glaciers, ocean sediments, stalactites and many other proxies all point to the same thing – a Holocene optimum, which lasted up to maybe 5,000 years ago. This was followed by the Minoan, Roman and Medieval Warm periods, and the Little Ice Age, which was probably the coldest era since the Ice Age and which ended during the 19thC.

This evidence comes from all around the world. Even, for instance, in New Zealand:


Is there any other branch of science where so-called scientists can simply make up fairy tales and pass them off to a corrupt media as fact?

BP and another waste of energy

SINCE 1952, BP has published its Annual Statistical Review of World Energy. In BP’s words, this is ‘a constant source of objective, comprehensive – and, most importantly – trusted data to help industry, governments and commentators make sense of developments in global energy markets’.

This year’s edition has just been released, and it has a new custodian, the Energy Institute, which BP says is ‘the chartered professional membership body for people who work in energy’. 

It is slightly concerning, therefore, that the Energy Institute is not quite the professional body that BP makes out, but a lobby group for Net Zero. According to its website, its objective is ‘creating a better energy future for our members and society by accelerating a just global energy transition to net zero’. Its president is Juliet Davenport, founder of Good Energy, a renewable energy company; senior positions are occupied by other lobbyists for renewables. Whether the review is quite as objective, comprehensive and trusted going forward remains to be seen!

Nevertheless this year’s edition provides the same categories of data as previous ones. The story can be summed up in a handful of charts.

First, emissions of carbon dioxide continue to rise, a seemingly relentless trend, arrested only during the lockdowns of 2020. Last year saw yet another record high. Emissions now stand 5 per cent higher than in 2015, when the world’s politicians supposedly agreed to save the planet in Paris.

Whilst emissions in OECD countries have fallen by 1,287million tonnes since 2011, they have increased by 3,790million tonnes in the rest of the world. The UK’s total emissions are tiny in comparison.

Despite repeated claims of whopping increases in renewable capacity, fossil fuels continue to dominate, still increasing year-on-year. Meanwhile wind and solar account for only a tiny 5 per cent of the world’s energy:

And as our final chart illustrates, the small reduction in fossil fuel consumption in OECD countries has been offset by a six times larger increase in the rest of the world. Again we see that the increase in wind and solar energy has been tiny in comparison.

It has been evident all along that the world’s poorer countries were not prepared to sacrifice their public’s standards of living on the altar of climate change. This means the provision of abundant, reliable and cheap energy that only fossil fuels can supply.

The full review can be downloaded here.

NY taking legislative action to stop the “transition” until a fossil fuel replacement is identified.


By Ronald Stein

In May 2023, New York Senator George Borrello Introduced Legislation to Prohibit Use of Fossil Fuels in Manufacturing of Renewable Energy Equipment. Obviously, the Senator is cognizant of the reality that all the parts and components for wind turbines and solar panels are made with the oil derivatives manufactured from crude oil! Thus, ridding the world of oil will eliminate wind turbines, solar panels, and EV batteries!

  • Senator Borrello stated, “In order to produce and install renewable energy sources at the scale that will be required to power our entire state, the environmental toll from coal-fired power, diesel fuel and the mining of rare earth metals will be extensive and exists at cross-purposes with the stated goals of those advancing the climate agenda,” said Sen. Borrello. “If they truly believe that fossil fuels must be eliminated, then the state (New York) should not be financing the proliferation of structures whose manufacture, transport and installation produces significant emissions.” 
  • “Those who blindly call for New York to rapidly transition to renewable energy are perpetrating a shell game for political purposes, at great cost to our environment. This legislation would halt further damage as we wait for renewable technologies that can be produced sustainably, ethically and in cooperation with the goal of truly protecting our environment,” he concluded.

N.Y. Senator Borrello’s legislation summarizes the reality that world leaders are not cognizant enough to know that renewables only generate electricity. Currently, New York has no plans for the replacement of what is now manufactured from fossil fuels, which are supporting the eight billion on this planet!

It is time to conclude that wind and solar represent an investment sink hole just for the generation of occasional unreliable electricity. Such investments are not sustainable and are unable to support a modern economy, as electricity alone is not a replacement for the more than 6,000 products that are made from the oil derivatives manufactured from crude oil that did not exist 200 years ago and were responsible for the world population from 1 to 8 billion in less than 200 years.

In the bill, Borrello cites the “inherent environmental and ethical conflict” that results from using an emission-producing energy sources to manufacture “green” energy sources such as wind turbines, solar panels, and electric cars. “Currently, the products cited as the solution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions are manufactured, distributed, and installed using fossil fuels. Coal is burned to forge steel for the foundations, towers, and blades of wind turbines. Diesel-powered heavy equipment transports components, clears sites, digs foundations, and assembles the structures,” he said. “Solar panels require the extraction of rare earth minerals and depend on coal as the primary energy source for the manufacturing process.”

Today, world leaders have NO planned replacement for the supply chain of products that are made from the oil derivatives manufactured from crude oil that did not exist two hundred years ago. Those same products were responsible for the world population from 1 to 8 billion in less than two hundred years and continue to be demanded by today’s humanity.

A 1-minute video produced by Epoch Times is short, educational, and entertaining as it discusses the elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about. The video is about renewables that only generate electricity, but manufacture nothing for society. The video has already been viewed by more than 800,000 people on social media! https://www.youtube.com/shorts/stf2YrznkZU.

 After world leaders have viewed the video, they will have a better understanding of Senator Borrello’s legislation. Environmentalists wish to rid the world of emissions from fossil fuels but have no plans to identify the replacement for the oil derivatives that are the basis of more than 6,000 products and all the fuels for the 50,000 merchant ships, 50,000 aircraft, militaries, and space programs that support the eight billion on this planet!

Please enjoy the educational, and entertaining 1-minute video and kindly share with others, along with the legislative actions by New York Senator Borrello.

It’s time to focus on identifying the fossil fuel replacement that can support the supply chain of products and fuels to keep the 8 billion on this planet alive and healthy, and end further subsidies, tax credits, and investments in wind turbine and solar panel technologies just for the transition to unreliable generation of intermittent electricity.


  • Ronald Stein
  • Ronald Stein is an engineer, senior policy advisor on energy literacy for CFACT, and co-author of the Pulitzer Prize nominated book “Clean Energy Exploitations.”

Rollout of £150m heat pump scheme branded ‚embarrassing‘ after installation target missed

Money to burn

From Tallbloke’s Talkshop

 April 14, 2023 by oldbrew

A climate obsessed government wasting money on a ‚wretched‘ subsidised scheme while chasing self-imposed targets – heard it before?.
– – –
The government offered vouchers to help people pay to replace boilers with heat pumps but critics say most people can’t afford them „subsidised or not“, reports Sky News.

„It does not help people keep bills low. It takes from the poor to give to the wealthy and it is an embarrassment of a policy.“

The figures have cast doubt on the government’s target of 600,000 installations of heat pumps per year by 2028.

Through the scheme, households are given £5,000 vouchers to cover part of the cost of replacing fossil fuel heating systems – including oil, gas or electric – with a heat pump or biomass boiler.

Ministers have previously said this will cut emissions and reduce the UK’s dependency on fossil fuels, mitigating some of its exposure to global price spikes in gas.

Full report here.