Friday, 12 July 2013

Reliable And Unreliable Sources








Around the web sites, blogs and contributors come and go.  Some are missed, some not and some are not even noticed.  One site that I have been looking at regularly and reading which is to close to archive at the end of July will be missed.
                        
It is The Oil Drum which has drawn on a variety of expert knowledge and opinion on energy and fuel matters.  It has vetted the articles to ensure a good standard but has given open house to differing views.  Where else I could go now to see this kind of material easily available is not easy to work out.

It will be a case of hunting round the specialist journals and similar publications with less certainty of finding the material wanted or the nature of the study in relation to what is going on out there in the oil and related markets.  It has not been perfect but the time spent reading it has taught a lot about a very difficult and complicated area.

One source that I do not regard as anywhere near reliable and if anything acts as a benchmark for doubtful information, weak analysis and confused objectives and ideas is Her Majesty's Government.  Alas, other governments and related official bodies are almost as bad but lack the zany haplessness and idiocies of our own.

Given the choice of rubbish material it is difficult to single out one that is so much worse than the others and sometimes it almost seems that the Departments of State and Agencies are in fierce competition for the most outlandish schemes, explanations, and what laughable burbling passes for policy.

One matter raised in the last few days is just an example, how major or minor is a matter of opinion, but is about Wind Farms, those clumps of wind mills that are supposed to doing wonders for going green and getting our carbon emissions down by increasing them by other means.

John Ward is his wardslog claims that when the windmills were considered as one of the lead policies for future power requirements a great deal of work went into the financing and to the structural requirements of the projects.  Many being built out to sea needed careful work to make sure they could stand up and the greatest benefit would be gained by the financiers putting up the money.

The community would benefit by knowing that all the extra costs they would pay through taxes and fuel bills would be for a Good Thing according to the EU with the mantra of "growth" as well, that is extra money being churned round Westminster and The City.
                                                                                  
But Governments and those with power and access to big money have had a very nasty habit down the centuries of going in for big buildings of all sorts with ever looking at what might be the right maintenance costs, or indeed what work might be entailed in the future to keep these places going. 

In the case of the windmills it seems that our government forgot to look at the mundane matter of corrosion.  Big things stuck up high in the air in all weathers on land will have a lot of it.  The same big things stuck up on foundations below sea water and out to sea will have a lot more a lot quicker.  So all those lovely windmills are going to need a lot of money for upkeep, far more than was ever anticipated.

The terrifying thing about this one is that against all the other huge blunders and miscalculations it is a relatively small item. Another is that windmills are not exactly new technology, although the latest designs embody some new features.

Wherever you go in government now you are preached at about the wonders of The State yet it is incapable of dealing with a recent version of an ancient technology.

There are many academics who debate and wonder about how "civilisations" and communities of the past collapsed and why yet all they have to do is look around them and see what is happening now.  We are ruled by people who do not know what they are doing or why only that they rule.

And their peoples were obliged to rely on official sources and approved information.

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