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Petition – Dam Fuel Poverty

The River Severn could be harnessed as a social enterprise for Britain to create 40,000 jobs; contribute 10% of the UK’s 40% renewables and CO2 targets, eradicate fuel poverty permanently and provide the government with an extra £2Billion a year to spend.

Currently, almost £4billion is spent per year fighting a losing battle with fuel poverty as energy costs keep rising faster than standards of living. A system to harness the power of the River Severn could cost about £15 Billion to build, last 100 years and generate enough electricity to power over 4% of the UK – that’s enough for roughly 5 million homes and more than enough to help the country’s fuel poor.

The government should accelerate plans to build this system using public money. And, once the system is completed, instead of giving cash grants to the fuel poor, the government should give them free fuel from the River Severn project instead.

Once complete, the country would save almost £4billion per year at today’s energy prices and, as only £2billion of that money would be needed each year in repayments of a £15billion loan needed to build the system, the government could effectively end fuel poverty and save £2billion each and every year.

You can read my first post about this here and the follow-up post here.

Please ‘sign’ the petition


12 responses to “Petition – Dam Fuel Poverty”

    • Reply n.daddario

      this and similar projects on this vein should be priority,especially with todays energy crisis/situation.and its not as if it has not been known for dacades that we would come to this supply/demand shortage

    • Reply Peter Berry

      This is such a good cause / idea to end fuel poverty in this time of economic crisis and when oil is being priced so high. It seems ludicrus that we have to fight for public backing and make government see what a good idea this is. Surely this is such a good solution, tapping into nature’s resources without destroying the planet and helping to end poverty for a utility that people have to rely on??

    • Reply Neil Law

      Tidal stream, yes.Now please.
      Tidal range, most definitely not.

    • Reply nommo

      Absolutely David – there are choices… Dale’s main point in the blog posts (and the wording of the petition) seems to be that *whatever* technology is eventually selected, that the energy generated goes to combat fuel poverty as a kind of large scale social enterprise… which is pretty radical. Something being done for good primarily, as opposed to profit.

    • Reply Mark Sweeney

      Go on. It is a neat place to put them, they don’t pollute your cities, they don’t pollute your countryside. They perform better at sea too! Go sea-wind power!

    • Reply Tabitha Evans

      Let’s use our natural resources sustainably!
      We can make peak oil work for us and have a better future because of changes we make now.
      Let’s make informed choices.

    • Reply Chris

      Strangford Lough style turbines please Mr. Brown!

    • Reply Neil Loughbrough

      This week I was given a HM Armed Forces Veterans badge and a letter of appreciation.. I would prefer to be able to pay for my fuel knowing it was %100 renewable. I love this country with its green fields but most of all its pioneering spirit.Lets show the rest of the World that we can turn a country carbon neutral, using renewable energy and stand on our own “feet” with our heads held high.

    • Reply David Radley

      Now is the perfect time to be doing this, not only will it have one of the quickest payback times, it will continue to generate large profits for around a century, create needed construction and ongoing jobs at an ideal time considering the economic climate, address our carbon emissions by allowing carbon polluting power stations to be retired or to be run at reduced load. It can even be used to establish better transport links between England and Wales, boosting the local economy and saving on transport fuel by eliminating a large leg of some journeys.

      I’ve been looking into this for a few years as part of an OU degree, and it seems that a lot of the things to overcome can be achieved with relative ease, even the environmental impacts on wildlife which seems to be the main social resistance of the project.

      An interesting factor of mine is what will be the long term effect resulting from the slowing of the earths spin? It’s not significant, but it will increase the length of the day by around 1/10th second every thousand years, and if other countries follow suite we will be in the realms of entering whole seconds. Whatever the consequences, this technology is greatly needed at least as a stepping stone to immediately reduce our carbon emissions until we can better our technology and understanding.

      I really hope that such a project can be contracted soon, as it will greatly help curb our emissions, something which needs to be on all of our top priorities at this moment in time.

    • Reply David Radley

      I’m no expert, so a few of the facts may not be accurate, but I have gathered this from material supplied by an OU course I have recently completed, so I would be shocked if it is a ‘myth’. I will create an article on my blog later to describe the exact science behind it rather than result to hearsay.

      Like the link says, it’s true that natural friction is causing the spin to marginally slow. I believe the misconception lies in the fact that it assumes a tidal plant will not add additional resistance. (Actulally, the link does say this in its defence, and is mearly trying to state that it can be used as a long-term solution. “But even if we doubled the power ex-tracted from the earth–moon system, tidal energy would still last more than a billion years.”)

      A barrage creates much greater friction comparatively by preventing the mass of water from naturally flowing back, the source of which we then harness the energy from. If the barrage does not exist, the mass of water is free to flow back with limited friction and little work is done. Of course, we are talking minute changes, so it’s neither here nor there in reality.

      To understand this, you need to know the physics of how tides are formed. As I said, I’ll create a page later to explain this, but in basic terms it is to do with ‘something like’ the combined centre of gravity of both the earth and moon (which is just below the earth’s surface) that the earth pivots around. The centrifugal force around this pivot creates the tide in one direction when part way through rotation, and then the opposite tide occurs on the next part. Visualising on a much smaller scale; if we were to place a barrier to prevent the flow of water from continuing onto the second part, it would act as a break for that one cycle and will require greater force to keep the spin continuing. If the water is then released (like in a tidle plant), then the same forces can occur on the next cycle.

      Hope this explains things. I’ll try and make it more acurate later 🙂

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