A recent posting on WUWT by Willis Eschenbach titled “We Have Met The 1%, and He Is Us” illustrates that the people that get hurt the most by energy rationing are the poor. Eschenbach’s experiences as a sailor got him to many parts of the globe where living is a daily struggle and the high cost of energy, if it is even available, doom those people to suffering and short lifespans. I recommend that you read his posting which can be accessed by clicking here.
I recently ran across a story that helps illustrate how the zeal of the warmers is punishing the poor. The West Bengal government wants to provide electricity to 1076 Sundarbans villages. The government believes there will be a 10 to 20 fold increase in electricity demand between 2010 and 2020. However the environmental groups oppose this action because the grid will supply coal based electricity.
First a little geography and governance background. The geographic area called the Sundarbans is located along the Bay of Bengal. It is partially in India and partially in Bangladesh. Focusing on the Indian part of the Sundarbans, the region is governed by the South Panagnas district which in turn is governed by West Bengal state. The population of South Panagnas is said to be 8+million people with an area of 3850 square miles. Part of this area, about 540 square miles is a preserve as it is a major mangrove growth and has some protected species. The Indian part of the geographic Sundarbans area has a population of over 4 million.
In addition to their issues associated with coal based power, the environmentalists say that the power transmission structures could cause erosion in the soft soil. According to ZEENEWS.com:
“ A report by the New Delhi-based research body Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) says the grid extension is also threatening to make the existing investments in various solar projects in large islands like Sagar island redundant.
“Since the conventional grid will allow 24/7 electricity to the consumers, there will be an obvious inclination among consumers to switch over to the conventional grid thereby jeopardising the long-term sustainability of the existing renewable energy run set-up,” says another report by CUTS International.
Pointing out that West Bengal has good potential for solar photovoltaic-based electricity generation, it says the potential remains underutilised owing to the high initial investment and the poor quality of after sales service of solar equipment.
Now the last two paragraphs speak volumes. The people and industry would rather have a 24/7 electrical supply than one that has a maximum availability of 12 hours a day WHEN the sun shines and they want to get away from solar systems that cost too much and that get poor quality of after sales service. That’s what concerns the people. The environmentalists care about the existing investments and the suspect computer based projections that temperature may be higher 100 years from now.
I would bet that the grid supplied electricity will make a very positive contribution to the lives of the Sundarbans people.