Featured post

10,000,000 Miles in a Nissan Leaf?

Monday, 18 December 2017

I do like random stuff

The London Tube Map translated into German

The Avoncliff Weaver's Mill Planning Application - An Update

North Mill owners have added a new document to their submissions to the planners and the relevant document will be on the council planning documents portal shortly (if it isn't already there).

LINK to the submissions at Wiltshire Council - I hope this one takes less than 6 weeks to make it up there!

The Environment Agency seem to have had cause to back off their own flood risk investigation for the schemes... so much so that they lodged a holding objection with the council  in October (see below)

A few bits and bobs - I noticed that there are two letters about the proposal in the Wiltshire Times :

15th December
R Henderson (Comments open)

1st December
Anthony Battersby  (Comments Closed)

Wiltshire Council planners have been out to the site and had discussions with involved parties.


As an aside I see that the Environment Agency's flood risk report for Avoncliff hydro schemes is up on the planning portal. If one is interested in that - I would suggest that a close look at the actual numbers quoted and their provenance is in order to get a bit of insight. When the flood risk assessment appraisal was performed North Mill made formal representations to the EA over erroneous assumptions used / made (wrong measurements), no validation was undertaken and the conclusions drawn are in my view quite arbitrary and subjective predicated on instructions...   The EA commissioning manager for this flood risk assessment appraisal - one John Sweeney has disappeared without trace.

It now looks like the EA have had some cause to reconsider the Flood Risk Assessment Appraisal relating to Weaver's Mill and actually lodged a HOLDING OBJECTION (October 2017) which wriggles on the difference between an "appraisal" and an "assessment" - I really do wonder what's prompted that?  - looks remarkably like CYA from here.....

Update: after a bit more reading.....  the November 2017 Johns Associates Flood Risk Assessment   doesn't exactly clear things up as it raises more issues related to environmental assessments  and the timing / sequencing, extents and approval of Environmental Permits consequent from those...  I also see that in the conclusions a claim of "betterment of flood risk" when the previous paragraph states the proposed scheme "will not result in an increased flood risk either upstream or downstream of the site" (make your minds up!) and it also cites / relies on the flawed Mott MacDonald modelling which evidently the EA themselves do not have full confidence in...

The bureaucracy related to Avoncliff hydropower schemes seems like some kind of incestuous perpetual motion machine.

Monday, 11 December 2017

The "Poor Little Fishes" eating plastic II

An update to this story .... According to the preeminent biological science journal Nature  Oona Lönnstedt has now been found to have:

  • Fabricated experiments
  • Falsified data

Peter Eklöv has been found to have been profoundly incurious about suspicious research results that he was putting his name to. The inquiry steps back form naming Eklöv as a perpetrator of fraud but it has to be assumed that he's either a completely pointless lazy eejit - or he was complicit in the entire thing. I can't resist calling it all very fishy indeed.

Literally thousands of news articles and media stories about this are out there at the moment with no mention that the paper has been declared a FRAUD.

I see Greenpeace still features the fraudulent work (and derivative articles) on its web site with no caveats even though it's been clear for 6 months that the results were fabricated.  

Thursday, 7 December 2017

10 Mossbank Way, Shrewsbury

an interesting and fairly technical piece over at Euan Mearns' blog about going off grid and using a Tesla Powerwall or similar.

See Here

As an aside - given Mr. Musk's talent / predilection for hyperbole - see this pragmatic presentation (imho) of Tesla's claims to date and going forward. I admire some of the Tesla / SpaceX achievements but I am getting quite tired of the endless BS and fanboys.

Friday, 1 December 2017

After a bit of a delay....

the owners of Avoncliff North Mill respond to the planning application by Weavers's Mill.

As you can see from the first page the submission has been lingering around the planning desks since the 18th of October - about 6 weeks... The submission is quite large - it's a 10.8MB pdf file 

A direct LINK to North Mill's  document (on the council planning portal).

As an aside there was an article in The Wiltshire Times print edition last week about the hydropower scheme - so... if you missed that (it didn't make it onto the web site)

Click on the pic to get a readable size....

It should be noted that there is extant planning permission for a water turbine (a water wheel actually) at North Mill.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Wiltshire Times article on Weaver's Mill Turbine Application

The Wiltshire Times has published an article on the application for a Kaplan turbine at Weaver's Mill Avoncliff.

It looks like the Duke Street, Trowbridge sub editors were away early for the weekend as it's littered with mistakes.

Predictably the WT swerves any mention of the history of hydropower applications at Avoncliff - not much of a surprise there really... (hint : try searching the archives here on the blog or on the main North Mill website

The article's author  also doesn't bother to look closely enough at the application to see the raft of issues that make this application very problematic. So... actually reading it won't inform you any more than reading

ps if you're wondering why I've put the Wiltshire Time article link to The Wayback Machine - it's because the WT has some history of "disappearing" articles about hydropower in Bradford on Avon - two articles about the Kingston Mill scheme were removed from the "local newspaper of record" web site without explanation several years back.... and Duke Street have repeatedly spiked stories which portrayed the Environment Agency as failing in their duties or worse. 

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Renewables ... Wind Power

As the few folk who've read the blog over a long period know I'm fond of pointing out that renewables are intermittent and unpredictable as in if you were say, solely connected to a wind turbine - you'd have around 44 hours of electricity a week (out of 168 hours) randomly - on average.

Well today...

 Wind power is down to 0.5% of it's capacity

Paul Homewood at the notalotofpeopleknowthat blog has a post up which details the woeful situation - I don't think I can improve on it.

How would you feel if the electric had been cut off at 10am yesterday?

I can only echo Paul's final sentence:

When will somebody tell the emperor that he is wearing no clothes?

The dishonesty of the renewables crowd is quite epic - we are regularly regaled with "the achievements of renewables" which I have to say usually do not stand up to close scrutiny  - but the reticence when it comes to the shortcomings ...  is also telling.      

Now... if  99.5% of electricity generation slowly  disappeared this morning... what would the reaction of the media be?  (OK....  trick question - you wouldn't know - because you'd have no media....eh?)

Monday, 18 September 2017

Turbine Planning Application at Weaver's Mill Avoncliff

A bit of a surprise....

A planning application for a Kaplan style turbine at Weaver's Mill has been lodged with Wiltshire Council.

The documentation is available on the Wiltshire Council web presence at this link.

I'm mildly amused that Trout Cottage is listed as a neighbor when it's (afaik) - part of the property making the planning application.....  - guess - which property is not listed as a neighbor or consultee - eh?

The supporting drawings in *my opinion* are absolutely pants - and there is no excuse these days for submitting something hand drawn? and (really badly) scanned - unless one is actually trying to blur the issue.

Quite a lot of redundant verbiage in the application and a raft of relevant things simply not addressed.


Friday, 5 May 2017

The Poor Little Fishes - Science and Environmentalism

Unless you've been living in a cave - you will have heard about microbead plastics polluting the environment.

The research that resulted in a huge PR campaign by environmental groups citing emotional articles about baby fish treating plastic beads like McDonalds fast food and  flurry of bans from governments keen to polish their eco credentials   - well that "research" has hit a road bump (a while ago).

That paper has been flagged by the Swedish agency tasked with policing scientific research as very problematic indeed - and the only copy of the data used to produce the claimed results has very conveniently disappeared with a single "stolen" laptop.

The study concerned a single freshwater fish species that some angling readers might be familiar with - Perch. As far as I can see - without exception all the coverage about the consequences of the research have cited the effect on the oceans - which is rather a big leap.

Rather a large group of researchers (most having far more relevant experience and track record than the authors of the disputed study) have called out the study as having faked the data - that data now having disappeared....

See more at this link 

The conclusions that Lönnstedt and Eklöv claimed are very convenient indeed for many in the eco-charity business.  It is now several months since the academic body charged with maintaining standards recommended that the paper be retracted.

I'll bet you have not seen any hint at all - as in nothing - about this matter when "plastic pollution" has been the subject of articles in the media. The paper / "research" is still widely cited when one looks at Google - yet not a single citation that I can find at the moment has a caveat on the matter or suggests that there is any problem with the "research".

A lie goes around the world while the truth is struggling to get its socks on.


Thursday, 9 February 2017

“Walking by a River one Day, I met the EA”

“Walking by a River one Day, I met the EA” 

by Brendan Barrow

The book is like War and Peace but without the peace.

Sunday, 5 February 2017

The Dog Ate My Homework

The antics of the bureaucrats at the USA's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have hit the news  -  a whistleblower (recently retired senior scientist) has detailed the tortured process whereby a politically desirable "research" outcome was contrived and then the evidence of how it was done was destroyed before anybody could re-do / validate the arithmetic used....

The red line....

I won't repeat the relevant points made in Anthony Watts' piece - David Rose in the UK's Mail on Sunday has a piece on the matter too.

I would though challenge the concept that this is NOAA data - it isn't actual "data" - as in actual measurement - it is an example of prejudiced and dishonest manipulation of readings designed to produce a "politically useful result" - and the dog ate the computer ...  sheesh...

The obliging bureaucrats at NOAA have busied themselves churning a whole series of AGW confirmation pieces aimed at supporting the last administration's policies - some well founded but misrepresented - others completely fraudulent and contrived. All served to prop up policy initiatives which for the most part had bugger-all to do with saving the planet and a lot to do with ideological goals.

Here at Avoncliff North Mill we are inured to the antics of bureaucrats seeking to justify their wonkily contrived assertions in the service of their arbitrary self serving decisions - and I like to think we can spot BS quite accurately - not that much skill is required in this case - the sods just made it up.

There's one thing about congenital liars - they can't stop themselves.... There will be more embarrassing stuff leaking out related to fiddling the evidence for Climate Change and Global Warming. It's pretty clear that the folk involved should actually be thoroughly ashamed of themselves.  A random commenter gives us - "Karl et al reached the required conclusions by the wrong methods"

Further reading at Dr Judith Curry's ( School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology.) blog - HERE .   Quite a lot of sparks and smoke and mirrors and things....  in the comments.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

160 Ton Wind Turbine Collapses

The collapsed £2million Spanish Gamesa turbine was at Kilgallioch wind farm in Ayrshire which is operated by Scottish Power Renewables who failed to alert the public to the incident for SEVEN DAYS. By some accounts the natives are unimpressed .

Apparently the G114-2.5 MW turbine on a  328-foot tower “creased” at the access door at ground level.- debris was spread over half a kilometre.

Scottish Power refused to answer specific questions on the incident or provide a photograph of the debris.

"The £300million Kilgallioch development has 96 mills and will generate 239 mega watts to power up to 130,000 homes when fully onstream later this year."

Hang on.... here we go again ...  powering  "up to" "xxxxxx homes" and slyly avoiding any suggestion that the windfarm doesn't produce power when there's no wind - that wind being adequate to turn the turbines a mere 26% of the time.   - imagine if your light switches had a similar performance?

To add insult to injury in the weasel wording and evasiveness extends to torturing the measurement numbers for the quantity of electricity generated - which is measured in mega Watt hours (MWh) - NOT mega watts...  The distance to London is not 70 mph.

In all  - embarrassing and - a fairly full on deployment of complete BS about the efficacy of windmills.

It looks as if about one turbine a year in Scotland suffers a catastrophic structural failure. Not a reassuring figure compared to say erm... bridges?

Update ....

oops! - there goes another one - BBC story    - maybe the folk in 'Norn Iron  have a slightly different view (something to do withe wood chips mebbe?) from the big offices on the mainland where they copy n paste press releases from renewables lobby groups?  Time to send in the ideological rectitude Inquisition.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

The US-EPA is getting a makeover...

Finally the EPA is being dealt with.

There are likely many that would view the restructuring and re-purposing of The Environmental Protection Agency as some act of vandalism by a new US administration, We have seen decades of increasing politicisation , corruption and legislative over-reach which have little if anything to do with "protecting the environment".

I don't particularly care to copy 'n paste other people's stuff so - two links to articles at Watts Up With That (WUWT)

The Beginning of the End of EPA


Why the constitution gives Trump the power to tell @EPA what to do

There are considerable parallels between the antics of the EPA and the UK's EA - many of the accusations of misbehavior levelled against the EPA have been similarly leveled at the EA...

Looks like the EPA might be cut from 15,000 staff to 5000.

Press briefing on the new US administration's aims:

See the BBC's Roger Harrabin writhing about 58:45 into the video

Interesting and quite wide ranging briefing. An antidote to most of the media coverage - if you want to actually know your enemy or want to find out what the Trump administration is likely to do.

Monday, 16 January 2017

Woeful Windmills

The UK's windmills are at it again ... 

Less than 1.3% of supply is now being produced and coal + gas turbines are pegged in the red.


and a day later

pretty much the same

however in - Germany last year....
How did they mange that? 

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Not Much of a Surprise.

It would appear that the Environment Agency have extended the licence for Weaver's Mill out to 2019.

On the last working day before Christmas break - they waved through the application to extend - even though there is no viable scheme for Weaver's Mill. The owners of North Mill have not been advised of the decision - a predictable gesture from officials whose bias and bad faith have polluted the last 6 years at Avoncliff.

I originally claimed that the EA didn't send out advisory emails to participants in the statutory consultation. 
This was not true.

The email for some reason got classified as spam by my service provider .... apologies to anybody at the EA who might have been incensed by a false accusation ....

The decision document can be read HERE

Why put a condition on a license  - and when that condition is clearly broken it's waved away with an unspecified explanation and some coaching of the applicant...

Perhaps a few people might take a few minutes to read this piece on the state of hydro power on our rivers and streams - by somebody with 30+ years of experience in the matter. Not much has changed at the EA in the 20-ish years elapsed since Mr. Goring submitted his memo....

The ROI from here might just make Weaver's Mill think twice about a scheme...

50 years to break even at that rate?
(assuming zero maintenance)

FYI at the moment  HSBC will generously give you about half that ROI
- on the same investment
- so maybe it's a bargain

Osman Goring on Small Hydropower

Published in 2015