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The Independent’s Renewable Energy Deception

February 3, 2017
tags: ,

By Paul Homewood


h/t Patsy Lacey




Fake news often appears as stories that only include half of the facts, and thus totally mislead. This report which originated in the Independent is a classic example:




UK ranked 24th out of 28 EU member states for renewable energy

Ian Johnston


A windfarm in Sweden, where more than half the energy used is from renewable sources: Getty

A windfarm in Sweden, where more than half the energy used is from renewable sources: Getty


The UK has one of the lowest rates of renewable energy consumption in Europe, according to new figures.

The European Union has a target of 20 per cent of energy use coming from carbon-free sources by 2020.

However there is a vast difference between the best and worst performing states.

Sweden has the highest rate with more than 54 per cent of its energy coming from renewable sources in 2015, following by Finland on just under 40 per cent and Latvia on 39 per cent.

The UK’s figure is just 8.2 per cent, putting it in 24th place out of 28 and not far ahead of last-placed Luxemburg on 5 per cent.

However the European Commission said the EU as a whole remained “well on track” to meet it 2020 target, with an average figure of 16.4 per cent in 2015.

Miguel Arias Cañete, Climate Action and Energy Commissioner, said: “Despite the current geopolitical uncertainties, Europe is forging ahead with the clean energy transition.


The message is clear – the UK is lagging behind everybody else and should be building lots more subsidised wind and solar farms.

And when you look at the figures, you can see that we are well down the list. (These numbers are based on BP’s Energy Review which uses Primary Energy. This gives slightly different results to the EU’s figures, which I believe are worked on Final Energy)





But when you actually look at the facts, you find a totally different story. In reality, most EU countries have, and have had for a long time, plenty of hydro power. So naturally their renewable contribution will be much higher than ours.





If we exclude hydro power however, we get the real story:




The UK comes out as 9th best, out of the total of 21 countries. (The BP list does not itemise the other 7 smallest countries)

As can be seen, we are well above the likes of France, Belgium, Poland and the Netherlands, but you would not have guessed that from the Independent’s fake news story.

As for the caption about Sweden getting half of its energy from reception, along with the picture of a wind turbine, the Independent’s readers might be interested to learn that, excluding hydro, renewables only actually account for 11.7%.

  1. February 3, 2017 7:10 pm

    The targets in the EU Renewable Energy Directive were deliberately targeted against the UK. The EU knew we didn’t have much in the way of hydro and so we would have to pay much more than other countries to meet our target. The idiot Tony Bliar signed up to the target, thinking it was just electricity, not all energy use. When you have idiots in charge this is what you get. Nothing has changed with regard to our insane energy policy – idiots are still in charge.

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      February 3, 2017 8:51 pm

      You say ‘idiots’, Phillip; I say “kiddies”. When we started to allow people to run the country who had never run anything more demanding than a bath or as a character in the latest episode of ‘Endeavour’ said, “couldn’t find their arse with both hands and a map” trouble was always going to follow.

      Virtue signalling + vanity projects + “legacy” = total disaster for which we shall all pay sooner or later, with our taxes, our prosperity, possibly even (in some cases) our lives.

  2. A C Osborn permalink
    February 3, 2017 7:14 pm

    The Independent, like the Guardian will always distort the truth in favour of RE, promotion of the EU and to criticise the UK.
    Like the Guardian they are becoming irrelevant as a real News source.
    Of course no mention of the exorbitant costs either.

  3. February 3, 2017 7:19 pm

    I am surprised at the position of Portugal, Spain and Italy in the final graph.
    Do they have a lot of solar generation?

    • February 3, 2017 7:29 pm

      Most of Portugal’s is wind at 10.7%.

      Equally most of Spain’s is too, 8.3%

      Italy is more split, 2.2% wind, 3.7% solar, and 3.7% for bio

  4. February 3, 2017 7:58 pm

    Since renewable energy is expensive and unreliable, the lower down that league table we come the better IMHO.

  5. David Richardson permalink
    February 3, 2017 8:10 pm

    “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed.”

    — Mark Twain

  6. Joe Public permalink
    February 3, 2017 8:20 pm

    This is the chart that shows *the* most important facts…..

  7. Athelstan permalink
    February 3, 2017 8:38 pm

    Miguel Arias Cañete, Climate Action and Energy Commissioner, said: “Despite the current geopolitical uncertainties, Europe is forging ahead with the clean energy transition.

    An astonishing statement of green bespectacled, Panglossian insanity.

    As the walls come tumbling down, EUrope imploding as the financial and structural faults crack ever wider………..

    Shouts Canete,

    “it’s OK because we’re going hell for broke and green energy will – waste more € Trillions!!….”

    Strewth! aye all aboard the ‘electric’ handcart going to hell and presssing hard on the accelerator Cataclysm coming up and far, far more quickly……………….!!

    Oh Lord and in his heaven, how do they reach such rarified positions of power and should Miguel Arias Canete be better employed elsewhere and may I suggest as a dumb waiter, simple up and down stuff – in the Berlaymont lipsinc and Karaoke bar.

    Mind you, thinking about and considering some of the lastest guff issuing from the gob holes of the likes of Juncker and Mogherini, Canete’s utterance – it’s probably a statement of relative coherence – that is, for an EU Kommissar.

  8. Graeme No.3 permalink
    February 3, 2017 10:47 pm

    Denmark is shown as 25% renewables with nil hydro. Wind at 42% according to an unreliable source
    So where did 40% of that wind electricity go? And where? Could it have gone to Norway and Sweden because their hydro schemes could absorb the excess? If so, does only that amount flow one way or is it a continuous exchange? And where would Denmark be if it didn’t have such sinks available for over-production?

    • February 3, 2017 10:54 pm

      Horses for courses. That’s why all these country comparisons are bound to be misleading, with or without the added spin of renewables fanatics.

    • AlecM permalink
      February 4, 2017 9:20 am

      Denmark uses fraud. They classify Biomass CHP as renewable and dump >10% demand wind to other countries, even at zero sale price. When wind is low, Denmark buys on the spot market. This is why their electricity prices are the highest in the EU.

      Germany has followed their lead but to stop that power disrupting their grids, the Czech Republic and Poland have installed phase switches at their borders.

      • Graeme No.3 permalink
        February 4, 2017 5:25 pm

        Are those phase shifting transformers now operational?
        Also I saw a comment that indicated France and the Netherlands were also going to put these units in.

  9. CheshireRed permalink
    February 3, 2017 10:57 pm

    Lying by omission has become a stock in trade tactic for ideologically driven media, of which the Indy and Guardian are absolutely textbook examples.

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