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Matt McGrath’s Latest Howler!

September 1, 2020
tags:

By Paul Homewood

h/t Joe Public

Is this the best Matt McGrath can come up with?

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New research suggests that power companies are dragging their feet when it comes to embracing green energy sources such as wind and solar.

Only one in 10 energy suppliers globally has prioritised renewables over fossil fuels, the study finds.

Even those that are spending on greener energy are continuing to invest in carbon heavy coal and natural gas.

The lead researcher says the slow uptake undermines global efforts to tackle climate change.

In countries like the UK and across Europe, renewable energy has taken a significant share of the market, with 40% of Britain’s electricity coming from wind and solar last year.

But while green energy has boomed around the world in recent years, many of the new wind and solar power installations have been built by independent producers.

Large scale utility companies, including many state and city owned enterprises, have been much slower to go green, according to this new study.

The research looked at more than 3,000 electricity companies worldwide and used machine learning techniques to analyse their activities over the past two decades.

The study found that only 10% of the companies had expanded their renewable-based power generation more quickly than their gas or coal fired capacity.

Of this small proportion that spent more on renewables, many continued to invest in fossil fuels, although at a lower rate.

The vast majority of companies, according to the author, have just sat on the fence.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-53951754

If you want this translating, he is saying that, while Europe has been heavily subsidising renewables, the rest of the world has stuck with what works – fossil fuels and hydro.

Surely even McGrath must understand the reasons why, yet he and his go-to expert seem to believe it is all some sort of conspiracy!

But what I really wanted to focus on was this ludicrous claim by Mr McGrath:

In countries like the UK and across Europe, renewable energy has taken a significant share of the market, with 40% of Britain’s electricity coming from wind and solar last year.

Perhaps before McGrath makes a fool of himself in future, he should learn how to look up the actual official data.

According to BEIS, renewables only contributed 37.1% of the UK’s electricity last year:

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https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/electricity-chapter-5-digest-of-united-kingdom-energy-statistics-dukes.

But not all of that renewable generation was wind and solar. Again according to BEIS, wind and solar only accounted for 23.8%, not the 40% figure, which McGrath appears to have just made up out of thin air:

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https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/electricity-chapter-5-digest-of-united-kingdom-energy-statistics-dukes

One wonders where Matt McGrath gets his “facts” from. St Greta’s Book of Fairy Tales maybe?

Needless to say, another complaint will be zinging its way to the BBC tomorrow!

You would have thought that the upper echelons of the BBC might have started getting a bit concerned about the general clamour to abolish the licence fee, following widespread complaints about their abysmal left wing, remainer bias.

If they have the slightest jot of common sense, they could start tomorrow by getting rid of their climate clowns, McGrath, Harrabin and Rowlatt.

24 Comments
  1. Phillip Bratby permalink
    September 1, 2020 10:08 pm

    Don’t forget they also need to get rid of Shukman and Heap. There are plenty of other alarmists as well who should go.

    • Bertie permalink
      September 2, 2020 6:55 pm

      Pension off the Sainted Attenborough as well!

  2. MrGrimNasty permalink
    September 1, 2020 10:18 pm

    Maybe a letter to the new DG explaining how the BBC sold it’s soul on the climate/energy issue and fails on impartiality/truth? Looks like some programs that are political propaganda dressed up as comedy (Mash Report etc.) are being reviewed. There will never be better time.

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      September 1, 2020 10:23 pm

      And of course how the constant climate lecturing ruins so much of its news/farming/countryside/wildlife programming to the point people turn off.

      • calnorth permalink
        September 2, 2020 8:37 am

        Exactly..constantly injecting poison into a topic that should be free of such toxic bollox. Not forgetting Mr Packham screeching in the hidden BBC background.

  3. Joe Public permalink
    September 1, 2020 10:31 pm

  4. September 1, 2020 10:37 pm

    He complains about power firms sitting on the fence. That used to be the BBC’s job, back in the day.

  5. OldFool permalink
    September 1, 2020 11:03 pm

    Where does the wood-burning power station (DRAX) come in? As “renewables” or “others”?

    • RexAlan permalink
      September 2, 2020 12:36 am

      I think Drax comes in as a renewable. Total renewable is 37.1% but according to the article wind and solar is only 23.8%. The difference could be Drax and maybe hydro.

    • Nancy & John Hultquist permalink
      September 2, 2020 1:44 am

      The term “thermal renewable” is used. (11.5%)
      Some of that (most?) is from burning North American trees, and producing Carbon Dioxide.

    • September 2, 2020 9:16 am

      Renewables

  6. September 2, 2020 1:11 am

    “Only one in 10 energy suppliers globally has prioritised renewables over fossil fuels, the study finds”

    Dear Mr McGrath
    That statistic contains information about the utility of the product, not about the sins of its target customers. The product is not yet ready for the market for energy. This is why it needs fear based activism as a marketing strategy. Please see

    https://tambonthongchai.com/2020/08/18/energy-storage/

  7. Broadlands permalink
    September 2, 2020 1:33 am

    Only one in 10 energy suppliers globally has prioritised renewables over fossil fuels, the study finds.”

    Except for biofuels (that are 90% fossil fuels), renewables do not move people and the things they need…world-wide transportation! Why is that so hard to understand?

  8. Broadlands permalink
    September 2, 2020 1:46 am

    “You would have thought that the upper echelons of the BBC might have started getting a bit concerned about the general clamour to abolish the licence fee, following widespread complaints about their abysmal left wing, remainer bias. If they have the slightest jot of common sense, they could start tomorrow by getting rid of their climate clowns, McGrath, Harrabin and Rowlatt.”

    Upper echelons? Who are these people? Do they have names and occupations? Are they immune from public criticism? Common sense?

  9. Phillip Bratby permalink
    September 2, 2020 6:46 am

    I love the photo showing those high-skilled green jobs. Cleaning solar panels by hand.

  10. grammarschoolman permalink
    September 2, 2020 8:19 am

    Well, in fairness to him (ahem), he’s presumably got to 40% by rounding up the 37.1%, which doesn’t seem entirely unreasonable.

    • mjr permalink
      September 3, 2020 10:56 am

      yes it is unreasonable. Mcgrath quotes 40% for wind and solar. The 37% relates to all renewables which includes burning US virgin forest at Drax. As Paul quotes, wind and solar alone is 23.8%.
      So rounding up to 40% from 23.8% is pushing it a bit!!!!

  11. mwhite permalink
    September 2, 2020 8:19 am

    Perhaps Mr McGrath should write a story about the Californian rolling blackouts, a big scoop if you ask me. If I had to rely on the British press I would never have known about them.

  12. Phoenix44 permalink
    September 2, 2020 8:59 am

    “Research”. An activist produces some stuff that “proves” what he wants to prove and the BBC makes it headline news. No alternative view, no independent analysis, no scepticism because of possible bias, just breathless, childish alarm.

    The basic premise doesn’t even make any sense. What’s wrong with having new entrants lead with a new technology. A company good at fossil fuel stuff doesn’t have te expertise in other areas. Why is that a surprise?

  13. Steve permalink
    September 2, 2020 9:45 am

    The complaint will be ignored as usual. The upper echelons know that the Tories and other parties back the nonsense and falsehoods. There’s too much money tied up in the process now, with very large sums invested in costly wind and solar along with the latest ruse of methane reforming and carbon capture. The sums are enormous and the returns guaranteed, with more to come in twenty years when the turbines need to be replaced.

  14. Gerry, England permalink
    September 2, 2020 10:46 am

    Paul, I don’t think you will get far with the new DG when he is reported in today’s Mail as saying that he wants to ‘maintain’ the BBC’s impartiality.

  15. September 2, 2020 3:56 pm

    BBC complaints what a waste of time this was there final reply to my complaint that I have now passed onto Ofcom not that they are any better.

    These are highlight items
    “Due accuracy is defined by the BBC as that which is adequate and appropriate to the output”. Yes the BBC decide what level of accuracy is required and if the level of accuracy the BBC judge the article contains meets the level of accuracy set by the BBC then everything is ok.

    “Andrew Bolt’s report can only be regarded as evidence to support your argument, not proof”
    So at what point does evidence become proof.

    “Supplemental File S1 shows the word “scientist” appears only 610 times. However, it seems to me your word search has failed to identify the large number of signatories who have degrees and/or qualifications in different fields of science but who did not use that word in their “Professional Position and/or Discipline”.
    There were many jobs listed there were many qualifications and PHD postgraduate doctoral degree referenced listed but only some were in the area of science. How far below the 11,000 scientist number would be required to fail the BBC Due accuracy test I wonder.

    Full reply
    “28 May 2020 Dear Mr Sides Your complaint about a BBC News Website article Thank you for your complaint of 15 May regarding an article on the BBC News website titled “Climate change: ‘Clear and unequivocal’ emergency, say scientists”. As you know, the BBC Complaints Team responded to your complaint on 7 May and explained it did not intend to respond further because it did not believe you had identified a potential breach of the BBC’s editorial standards. The Executive Complaints Unit now has to decide whether that decision was justified and whether you were given a reasonable response to your original complaint. This is in line with the BBC Complaints Framework and Procedures which sets out the process for handling complaints. I have read the BBC article, read the study on which it was based (a link for which was provided in the second paragraph of the article) and watched the clip from The Bolt Report you cited. I am satisfied Sean Moss gave you a full and reasoned response to the points you raised and adequately addressed your concern about the extent to which it was duly accurate to describe those who endorsed the study as “scientists”. Due accuracy is defined by the BBC as that which is “adequate and appropriate to the output, taking account of the subject and nature of the content, the likely audience expectation and any signposting that may influence that expectation”. The Australian Sky News report was, of course, entitled to draw a different conclusion but Andrew Bolt’s report can only be regarded as evidence to support your argument, not proof. There are three points I think which are relevant to your complaint and which I would add to what Mr Moss wrote. Firstly, the primary focus of the BBC article was on the findings of the study, not the relevant experience of those who endorsed it. The article gave sufficient weight and explanation to the findings of the report and the methodology used (“…the authors include a range of data which they believe represents a ‘suite of graphical vital signs of climate change over the past 40 years’. These indicators include the growth of human and animal populations, per capita meat production, global tree cover loss, as well as fossil fuel consumption”). In that context, I
    2 don’t think it was necessary to examine the specific roles and knowledge of the signatories. Secondly, the BBC article did explain who the people were who had endorsed the report and made it clear their experience was of all types and varieties, and they were not necessarily experts in climate science: Some 11,000 researchers of all types and varieties from 153 countries have endorsed the research The authors say they didn’t target individuals so there is a marked lack of some of the bigger names in climate change research. All the details of who’s signed the endorsement have been published online. “We have rising emissions, rising temperatures, and we’ve known this for 40 years and we haven’t acted – you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to know we have a problem,” said Dr Newsome. I appreciate you do not think a significant number of the signatories can reasonably be described as scientists and I note you have said a search of the Supplemental File S1 shows the word “scientist” appears only 610 times. However, it seems to me your word search has failed to identify the large number of signatories who have degrees and/or qualifications in different fields of science but who did not use that word in their “Professional Position and/or Discipline”. Finally, the BBC report made it clear the signatories had “endorsed” the article published in Bioscience. I think it is reasonable to say readers would have understood that isn’t the same as peer-review and would have inferred those signing were declaring their support for the conclusions of the authors. In conclusion, I think the response you received from the BBC Complaints Team was reasonable and appropriate in the circumstances and the decision not to engage in further correspondence with you was justified. There’s no provision for further appeal against this decision within the BBC’s complaints process. However, you can contact the broadcasting regulator, Ofcom, if you believe your complaint has identified a breach of the Ofcom Code. Information about lodging a complaint with Ofcom and its role in considering material published on BBC websites can be found here. Yours sincerely Colin Tregear Complaints Director”

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