10 Mo-Vember 2009 (Tuesday) - Stuff, and a Rant

Being on a late start today, I got up earlier that I might have done and spent a while catching up on the trivia of life. I started with looking at my leave for the next year. I’ve now booked twenty five days holiday for some of the more important events in my life for the leave year 2010-11. That’s organised of me… And then I sorted out my HPC registration. In order to do my job I have to be on the State Register. I sent off all the paperwork for that ages ago. They’ve taken the money, but still no certificate in the post. Everyone else has had theirs, so I phoned them up. Not only did they never receive what I sent them, I never got the reminder they sent a fortnight ago. Funny how they didn’t forget to take the money. Fortunately they emailed me what I needed, so that’s now in the post to them. Let’s hope that don’t get lost too.

I then booked tickets for the BKF Xmas bash. Despite sending out several emails, there are several people who didn’t answer. I was going to be harsh and assume that no answer means people don’t want to come, but I’ve sent another reminder to “the usual suspects”. I’m not entirely convinced my list of email addresses is as up-to-date as it might be. If any of my loyal readers would like me to book a space at the BKF shindig, please let me know. Similarly, if anyone would like to come to the ELO tribute concert in February, please email me so’s I can book tickets.

A dental emergency. “Daddies Little Angel TM ” had been up an in pain most of the night, so I took her to the dentist. It’s at times like this I appreciate my DenPlan dental cover. Were it me, I would get the treatment as part of the monthly payment that I make. As this was under the NHS, that was fifty quid that I didn’t have straight out of my pocket. And the NHS dentist was a rather foxy bird, too…

Then I settled down to waste several hours trying to book a visit to the chokey. Phoning the prison is a nightmare – I once spent three and a half days trying to get through to them. This time I got through after two rings. I was seriously impressed.

I’m going to have a rant today. I haven’t done that for a while. Sometimes I shouldn’t keep up with the news. Most people want the latest in high-tech electrical wizardry. Me – I generally settle for second best, but even so, I expect my household gets through far more leccie than my parents ever did when I was my son’s age. This is a feature of living in the twenty first century. Now, it’s no secret that the leccie has got to come from somewhere. And if we (as a society) carry on using it at this rate, then within eight years there simply won’t be enough leccie to carry on. Serious power outages are predicted by the year 2017.

So the government has decided to build ten new nuclear power stations. The opposition has had a dig at them in saying that they’ve left it too long to make this decision. The NIMBYs have been somewhat thwarted. Whilst the government is allowing public consultation, it’s been made clear that saying “NO!” to every proposed power station isn’t an option. The environmentalist lobby are up in arms. After all, that’s what they do.

But what choices do we have? Despite the public perception that there’s been a massive surge in electricity generated from wind farms, the fact is that the only UK producer of wind turbines has gone bust. There wouldn’t seem to be sufficient demand to make the things pay their way.

There’s only so much fossil fuel that can be burned, and burning it is demonstrably stuffing up the planet. So we are left with three options. Use a LOT less leccie, pay for wind and wave power (however much it costs) or build the nuclear power stations.

During the mid-eighties we used to use radioactive stuff at work. Part of our daily routine was to monitor the ambient radiation to check that nothing we were using had leaked in any way. In late 1986 we detected radiation from the explosion at Chernobyl. Perhaps we could pay a bit more for that wind farm, or use a little less leccie…

1 comment:

  1. One of the arguments being spun for Nuclear Power is energy security, however what proponents fail to point out is that currently the UK does not mine its own uranium, but imports it from some sources that could be just a problematic as gas from Russia. If we did want security of supply then we would need to dig up Orkney. Something that has already been dismissed on the grounds of it effect on the environment and the local population.

    If the government had a mind to do something it could, the simplest solution would be to place a hefty tax on all electrical and electronic equipment that did not have a proper off switch. Going around the house the only piece of equipment where the on/off actually turns the item off is my DAB radio, all the rest are actually on/standby buttons meaning that to turn them off I have to pull the plug .