……………………..Limits are for governments.

The Gift of Fire to Mankind: A Mythical Study on the Spiritual Significance of Coal, Part 5

“In the mountains of this province, they mine a sort of black stone. There are big seams of it. When lit it burns like charcoal and gives off much more heat than wood and will burn throughout the night and still be going in the morning. The stones flame a bit when first lit but then glow, giving off considerable heat. Abundant and cheap in a country where admittedly there is also an abundance of wood, these stones make possible the continous firing of stoves and baths. Warm baths are taken by everyone at least three times a week and daily in winter if a person can afford it.”

~Marco Polo (d. c. 1324)

Comment:  We continue our study of “The Gift of Fire to Mankind” as passed down through the myths and traditions of the people of the world.

It may be protested here of course that Marco Polo was a historic figure and portions of what he wrote about his travels in Asia in the 1200’s have

Marco Polo wrote from his prison cell about abundant black stone used for fire in Asia, making possible “the continuous firing of stoves and baths.” Image Life Mag archives.

since been verified to be accurate observations. Yet Marco Polo’s writings were met with such astonishment, disbelief, and derision in Europe that during the time he was imprisoned, his name was in use as a household slang term for lying or making up wild tales out of whole cloth.

And so I have taken the liberty of including Marco Polo’s report of coal fire and the prosperity enjoyed by regions of Asia, because it was at one time treated as a legend and a myth by the poor Europeans of the Medieval Ages.

It is now reported that Great Britain has not built coal fire power station since the construction of Drax in 1986. The country is instead committed to a policy of carbon dioxide emissions reductions. Dozens of coal power plants have been demolished,  others are scheduled to be shut down, and the beautiful English countryside groans under the increasing weight of giant wind turbines, sometimes measuring 200′ high and possessing 130′ blades. So far these have produced only a “half a percent of the power” needed, despite the £200 billion  investment in their use.

It is logical to ask if at the present rate of power generation reductions, and with the dousing of the country’s bright and efficient coal fires, only the wealthiest of the British will be able to bathe 3 times a week.

6 responses

  1. Brian H says:
    May 9, 2012 at 1:07 pm WUWT

    The hubris of bureaucrats is bottomless (without foundation).
    All this nonsense reminds me almost literally point-for-point of this prescient composition:

    It’s true, it’s true, the crown has made it clear
    The climate must be perfect all year
    A law was made a distant moon ago here
    July and August cannot be too hot
    And there’s a legal limit to the snow here
    In Camelot
    The winter is forbidden till December
    And exits March the second on the dot
    By order summer lingers through September
    In Camelot Camelot, Camelot
    I know it sounds a bit bizarre
    But in Camelot, Camelot
    That’s how conditions are
    The rain may never fall till after sundown
    By eight the morning fog must disappear
    In short, there’s simply not a more congenial spot
    For happy ever-aftering than here in Camelot

    ♪♪♫Camelot, Camelot ♫♫♪

    I know it gives a person pause
    But in Camelot, Camelot
    Those are the legal laws
    The snow may never slush upon the hillside
    By nine PM the moonlight must appear
    In short, there simply is not
    A more congenial spot
    For happy ever-aftering than here in Camelot

    Source: http://lyrics-a-plenty.com/c/camelot.lyrics.php

    October 25, 2012 at 6:24 pm

  2. From Christopher Booker at the telegraph:

    “It is 10 years since I first pointed out here how crazy it is to centre our energy policy on wind. It was pure wishful thinking then and is even more obviously so now, when the Government in its latest energy statement talks of providing, on average, 12,300MW of power from “renewables” by 2020.

    Everything about this is delusional. There is no way we could hope to build more than a fraction of the 30,000 turbines required. As the windless days last week showed, we would have to build dozens of gas-fired power stations just to provide back-up for all the times when the wind is not blowing at the right speed. But, as more and more informed observers have been pointing out, the ministers and officials of the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) seem to live in a bubble of unreality, without any practical grasp of how electricity is made, impervious to rational argument and driven by an obsession that can only end in our computer-dependent economy grinding to a halt.

    The latest attempt to get them to face reality is by Prof Gordon Hughes, a former senior adviser on energy to the World Bank, now a professor of economics at Edinburgh, whose evidence to the Commons committee on energy and climate change has now been published on the website of the Global Warming Policy Foundation. His most shocking finding is that the pursuit of our Climate Change Act target – to reduce Britain’s CO2 emissions by 80 per cent by 2050 – would cost us all £124 billion by 2020, or £5,000 for every household in the land: not just to build tens of thousands of absurdly subsidised wind turbines, but also for the open-cycle gas-fired power stations needed to provide back-up. To guarantee the same amount of power from combined-cycle gas-fired plants would cost £13 billion, barely a tenth as much.”

    November 11, 2012 at 10:03 am

  3. on WUWT Roger Knights says:
    December 10, 2012 at 9:22 am

    Renewables, once they become a large share of the supply, destabilize the power system. They are intermittent so they need spinning backup, which nearly doubles their cost. And they have other hidden costs that are now coming to light in countries that have gone for them in a big way, such as shorter life-spans than promised, higher maintenance costs than promised (including added wear and tear on the existing generating machinery), wide-scale intermittency, which was promised not to happen, high transmission costs, etc. Here’s a quote about the bottom line on those costs, from a recent German article:

    “Almost all predictions about the expansion and cost of German wind turbines and solar panels have turned out to be wrong – at least by a factor of two, sometimes by a factor of five.”
    –Daniel Wentzel, Die Welt, 20 October 2012, at http://thegwpf.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=c920274f2a364603849bbb505&id=40cadd5219&e=c1a146df99

    December 10, 2012 at 11:27 am

  4. http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk/

    December 11, 2012 at 9:27 pm

  5. Andrew Neil ✔ @afneil

    On what is billed as hottest day of year wind currently providing a 0.4% of electricity. A mere 144 MW out of 32,800 MW being consumed.
    Retweeted by Rog Tallbloke

    July 14, 2013 at 7:55 pm

  6. Zeke

    On Tallbloke’s Talkshop R J Salvador says:
    January 31, 2014 at 10:29 pm

    The prince is clearly confused by the random chicken scratches of the Met Office. The wyatt-currie stadium wave is beating up north america. It will make its way across the Atlantic and reach Europe just in time for a solar minimum. I hope the boilers in Buckingham palace are upgraded by then or cold will be the behind that sits upon the throne.

    January 31, 2014 at 5:15 pm

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