Sometimes observers like to weigh the mentions of a topic, and sheer numbers of posts can come to matter as much as originality or style.
In that spirit, let me add to the mentions of shale.
Yes, government, we know that "shale" is on the banned words list, like "EU powers". (Are MPs given a list, or do you have to absorb this part of the political culture even to make the candidates list? Is it like taxi drivers' "knowledge"?)
We know how shale is helping to turn round the US economy. We know that estimates of England's shale reserves are going up even as Poland's are going down.
We know that the UK government is continuing to wimp.
The UK government expects to make an announcement on whether Cuadrilla can resume fracking in due course, a spokesman for the Department of Energy and Climate Change said.Is that really the best you can do? Are you all fixated on pasties?
You'd think shale was a curse not a boon. The government seems to wish it had never heard of shale. It won't go away. It will be prospected in countries like India, China, Argentina and Australia. So their people will get richer, they will be able to produce goods more cheaply, and competitors who don't have shale resources or don't exploit them will suffer economically.
The world will exploit its centuriesí worth of shale gas and shale oil until the time in the future when we have reliable and cost-effective renewables which donít cost a fortune and disfigure the landscape. Meanwhile, there is no need to tip taxpayers' money into this distant dream. Government's spending way too much already and renewables just ain't urgent.
As Michael Baker comments:
There are no 'renewables', only intermittents & they will never be 'high intrinsic energy' & hence never viable. It is fossil fuel providing warmth, chill, high production agriculture, medical advances etc that has lifted the earth's population from 2.5 bn to 7 bn & rising - turn off wells & nuclear & you kill 4.5 bn people.Meanwhile, cheap, domestically produced energy? Yes, please.