2014 © Graham Rabbitts [You are welcome to use original material from this site, but the source should be acknowledged]


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Can there be anyone left who doubts that strange things are happening to our climate? Yachtsmen know it is windier each year. And we have all seen increasingly frequent extremes of weather, winter and summer.

Climate change and energy supply are inextricably intertwingled (!).

I have been involved on the fringes of these problems since the mid 1970’s when the ‘Peak Oil’ theory was resurrected and we worried about oil running out.

It was the recent ‘Peak Oil’ theory that led to the current dash for renewables. But as Dieter Helm has pointed out the Renewable Directive has had some perverse effects. And there is no doubt that present renewable technologies, on their own, can NEVER solve the problem - they are too diffuse.

My current views are built upon several different sources including 

1: The reports of the Inter-governmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC). The summary of their latest report is accessible from the list.

2:  David Mackay’s book “Sustainable Energy Without the Hot Air” (SEWTHA). It is freely available on the Internet. This book is regarded as essential reading by many leading scientists and also by leading environmentalists. The book can be downloaded free - see link. A couple of Davids presentations on how to understand Climate Change are also included in the list

3: Dieter Helm’s book “The Carbon Crunch” and various presentations that he has made that are available on You Tube. An example is included in the list

4: James Lovelock: I have included a You Tube presentation and an interview with James Lovelock. They are whimsical in some ways, but have a grain of hard common sense and acute observation running through them.

There are many other possible lines of exploration, including

   - the future of Shale Gas

   - the role of nuclear

   - can fusion ever deliver?

   - unexploited technologies such as thorium reactors

Taken overall, I am convinced we now face a significant degree of warming, probably well beyond the ‘safe’ 2 degrees. It is pleasing that IPCC have - at last - acknowledged this and are now placing more emphasis on adaptation to inevitable change. I am also totally in agreement with Dieter Helm that present EU and UK policy is potentially disastrous, and the short term focus should be on the elimination of coal in the fuel mix, with new generation renewables being promoted in favour of mindless commitment to old fashioned technologies that are incapable of solving the problem

It is too big a subject to go into further here but the sources and seminars shown on the right will lead you into making up your own mind about what should be done. And you can try your own solution using the model developed by David Mackay - see below.

My Environmental ‘Gurus’

Dieter Helm: Oxford Economist and Chair of the Natural Capital Committee

David Mackay: Cambridge professor and adviser to the Dept for Energy and Climate Change

James Lovelock: Fiercely independent scientist who championed the ‘Gaia’ theory that led to the eco-system approach. Often thought to be wacky, but often shown to be right.

IPCC 5: Headline Statements

SEWTHA  (the  book)-

David Mackay

Go for it!  >>Go for it!i  >>Go Top

Fixing Climate Policy - Dieter Helm

Go for it!i  >>

Gaia - James Lovelock

Go for it!i  >>

SEWTHA  (presentation)-

David Mackay

Go for it!i  >>

A rough ride to the future - James Lovelock

Go for it!i  >>

Renewables Calculator - David Mackay-

David Mackay

Go for it!i  >>

You can try you own energy preferences on the calculator demonstrated above by visiting

The DECC website page

2050 pathways

SADLY DAVID MACKAY DIED IN EARLY 2016. I have chosen to leave his material on my site becauuse it is unique, and tribute to his life.