Petrodollars to pedtrotodollars
Makes sense. If you understand underhand.
The government of Abu Dhabi has stepped in to rescue the financially-troubled London Array mega-windfarm project, intended to build a massive forest of turbines in the middle of the Thames estuary. In a deal inked today, the Masdar Initiative of the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (ADFEC) acquired 20 per cent of the Array …
Fact is we can't continue consuming at 2001 levels, even if you disregard the reality of climate change as Lewis seems to. Global and UK population is growing, global living standards are rising and the recent trend of soulless and selfish consumerism will continue, maybe not at the same rate. And as the current financial crisis shows, the world is changing, you can't rely on the status quo. In the UK we are rubbish at tackling the real issues, how many people here know about the PassivHaus standard where domestic insulation means heating needs are met with minimal heating?
Mine's the one made from sackcloth!
Great, more of our essentials being sold off to Johnny Foreigner
Not being Xenophobic, but especially given the article today stating how HMG's defence policy is to "Keep it British" (albeit a flawed ideal as detailed in the article), the idea is to prevent us being compromised by a foreign nation by cutting off our supplies of ammo, parts etc. How then, does it make sense to sell off all our utilities to foreign investors???
What use will Westland/DML etc be as our source of military equipment when Abu Dhabi/France/Russia etc can pull the plug on our electric, turn off our water supplies, stop the gas supplies, etc? Or are we going to build helicopters by hand in the dark whilst eating salads (as we won't have power to cook on)?
At the very least, we'll be wallet-raped once they own all our utilities (cf. "Car Industry" if not convinced), and at worst we'll be significantly compromised by a nation we've fallen out with (and don't say it'd never happen - who'd have thought such a swift change of relations between Iceland and the UK could have occurred?)
Words fail. Please see sketch.
"...household uses 22,795 kilowatt hours a year ... thus 750,000 such homes would require more than 17,000 gigawatt-hours annually. But the Array will produce only 3,100 gigawatt-hours."
"...only considering electricity consumption - and forgetting about the more significant gas or heating oil..."
So the 22795 figure is not just electricity but factors in gas and oil too?
the pro-nuclear lobby will start bleating again. Ignoring the arguments about security and waste disposal, will someone please explain how going nuclear (with fission reactors) is a good idea when it's the second most expensive form of generation around and has no hope of getting cheaper because we're already near, if not at "peak economic uranium production" and at the end of the technological improvement cycle? Unlike renewables, which show plenty of room for improvement, and no worries about running out of fuel)
Of course, if we build breeder reactors, the fuel problem goes away, but they are even more expensive than fission, create lovely weapons grade waste, and even if we started now, they won't be ready before the lights start going out.
However, my main concern is that this represents yet more of UK Energy being owned overseas. This is just plain insane - every country should be aiming to own it's own power sources, both physically and financially, just for economic stability, if nothing else!
Yep. Because we do not generate a lot of electricity from oil. In fact very little. However, the emir is happy to INCREASE our energy dependency. Till now we depended on him for our vehicles, from now on we will depend on him for our electricity generation as well. Smart move. Applause
Unfortunately, El Reg has missed out on the 'sex on the beach' case in Dubai (possibly due to its complete lack of any IT angle).
But as it's a salacious tale, as it borderline PH, and as today's Friday, I'm being forced to hijack the Abu Dhabi windmills story comments. After all, as any Englishman knows, all these johnny foreigner places in the Gulf are interchangeable.
I've no time at all for greedy ex-pat Brits living it up tax free in the sun but expecting sympathy when they break local laws and enrage local sensibilities. The woman in this case, Ms Palmer, claims to be having a nervous breakdown because of the harsh press coverage - life is tough, dear, get over it. Like the odious Mr Acors who got over you - let us hope his quest for casual sex is fulfilled - but not in a nice way - in a Dubai jail.
@Ralph B - I laughed aloud at your comment! Respec', bro.
Since these things are designed to generate electricity it seems perfectly reasonable to me to talk about the number of homes that could have their electricity demands satisfied by the development. Where does gas and oil come into it?
We're still in the very early days of exploring non-coal/gas/oil energy sources, and this is how you advance - you try things. Wind energy may be viable, it may not. We'll know in a few decades. Likewise nuclear, solar, tidal, farting cows and all the other crazy or not so crazy ideas out there. The only thing we do know for sure is that fossil fuels are not viable as a long-term solution, If you accept that long-term extends beyond your own short stint on the planet.
'... will someone please explain how going nuclear (with fission reactors) is a good idea when it's the second most expensive form of generation around and has no hope of getting cheaper because we're already near if not at "peak economic uranium production" and at the end of the technological improvement cycle?'
So-called Gen-IV reactors can 'burn' thorium, of which there are much greater reserves than uranium. They also fission all isotopes of uranium, so increasing utilisation by a factor of fifty or so. Even better, they can fission transuranic elements; so they are capable of reducing the half-life of existing waste from hundreds of millennia to a few centuries. Oh, they could also 'burn' plutonium, were the powers-that-be so minded, in order to reduce and safely dispose of stocks of weapons-grade material.
This isn't to suggest that fission alone provides the solution to future energy needs. It will, however, be a good deal easier easier to tackle the problem with it than without.
The main difficulty with nuclear energy, western governments included, seems to be that of encouraging its peaceful use rather than continued misuse in the absurd quest for global domination with which the industry has been tainted from the outset. To turn plutonium stocks into energy and to denature existing waste would be a step in the right direction.
The cost estimates that I've seen (and done as best I can) seem to show that with nuclear fission included in the energy mix electricity will be less expensive, both financially and environmentally, than with other options.
We can't supply our current needs using renewable sources and nothing else. Sensible use of nuclear energy as a stop gap makes lots of sense especially those thorium eaters.
Interestingly wind causes more deaths per gigawatt of power generated per year than nuclear does. (sources: The Paul Scherrer Institute and the ExternE study quoted by David MacKay in his book 'Sustainable Energy – without the hot air')
"So-called Gen-IV reactors can 'burn' thorium, of which there are much greater reserves than uranium."
Fascinating to see the thorium bandwagon roll into the debate given the recent report by the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority. And fourth generation fission reactors are apparently twenty years away - why this is should be obvious if one considers the relative lack of expertise in using thorium as a fuel. Given the tendency of the established nuclear industry to milk the taxpayer, there's a reasonable chance of seeing a viable route to commercial fusion power generation being worked out before then.
And of course, wind power isn't the renewable option with the most potential: it's a conservative option whose economics are fairly well understood. To pick a more promising alternative, there's a steady stream of developments in solar power these days, perhaps unknown to those who think that the solar-powered Casio pocket calculator they used at school is still state of the art.
Let us look at some figures. Denmark produces around 9% of its electricity using windymills. These wind (bird) mills kill around 30,000 birds per year (Lomborg, 'The Skeptical Environmentalist' 2001). Around 1,000,000 birds are killed by cars a year in Denmark (same source). Even the RSPB say wind turbines don't pose a significant risk to birds in this country and they really really like birds and would hate to see them milled. Destruction of habitat is much more of a threat to birds (ref: Sarah Bee 17/10/08). Take away feeding grounds, breeding grounds and migration stopover places and they are in a mess.
The world's governments are eager to let someone else handle their IT headaches, according to a recent Gartner report, which found a healthy appetite for "anything-as-a-service" (XaaS) platforms to cut the costs of bureaucracy.
These trends will push government IT spending to $565 billion in 2022, up 5 percent from last year, the analyst house claims. Gartner believes the majority of new government IT investments will be on service platforms by 2026.
"The pandemic sped up public-sector adoption of cloud solutions and the XaaS model for accelerated legacy modernization and new service implementations," Gartner analyst Daniel Snyder said in a release. "Fifty-four percent of government CIOs responding to the 2022 Gartner CIO survey indicated that they expect to allocate additional funding to cloud platforms in 2022, while 35 percent will decrease investments in legacy infrastructure and datacenter technologies."
A former Maryland Cabinet-level official and a former IT executive have pleaded guilty to involvement in a bribery and extortion scheme related to technology contracts about a decade ago.
According to the US Attorney's Office of the State of Maryland, Isabel FitzGerald, 52, of Annapolis, Maryland, and Kenneth Coffland, 67, of Riva, Maryland, pleaded guilty last week to charges of bribery and extortion, respectively. They were indicted in 2017.
From 2009 through September 2011, Coffland worked [PDF] at ACS, which held a $129 million IT hosting contract and $229 million applications contract with the State of Maryland Department of Human Resources (DHR). ACS, acquired by Xerox in 2010, managed the datacenter that hosted DHR applications for administering welfare benefits under federal and state programs.
An Australian digital driver's license (DDL) implementation that officials claimed is more secure than a physical license has been shown to easily defaced, but authorities insist the credential remains secure.
New South Wales, Australia's most populous state, launched its DDL program in 2019, and as of 2021 officials there said that slightly more than half of the state's eight million people use the "Service NSW" app that displays the DDL and offers access to many other government services.
Now, a security researcher at cybersecurity company Dvuln claims he was able to brute force his way into the app with nothing but a Python script and a consumer laptop. Once inside, he found numerous security flaws that made it simple to alter the DDL stored in the app.
A woman in the US has been charged with murder after she allegedly tracked down her boyfriend using an Apple AirTag and ran him over after seeing him with another lady.
Gaylyn Morris, 26, found her partner Andre Smith, also 26, at Tilly’s Pub in an Indianapolis shopping mall with the help of the gadget in the early hours of June 3, it is claimed.
A witness said Morris had driven up to him in the parking lot and inquired whether Smith was in the bar, stating she had a GPS tracker that showed he was inside, according to an affidavit [PDF] by Detective Gregory Shue. Morris, the witness said, subsequently spotted Smith within the establishment.
Updated In one of the many ongoing age discrimination lawsuits against IBM, Big Blue has been ordered to produce internal emails in which former CEO Ginny Rometty and former SVP of Human Resources Diane Gherson discuss efforts to get rid of older employees.
IBM as recently as February denied any "systemic age discrimination" ever occurred at the mainframe giant, despite the August 31, 2020 finding by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that "top-down messaging from IBM’s highest ranks directing managers to engage in an aggressive approach to significantly reduce the headcount of older workers to make room for Early Professional Hires."
The court's description of these emails between executives further contradicts IBM's assertions and supports claims of age discrimination raised by a 2018 report from ProPublica and Mother Jones, by other sources prior to that, and by numerous lawsuits.
The United Kingdom's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) on Friday said it intends to launch an investigation of Apple's and Google's market power with respect to mobile browsers and cloud gaming, and to take enforcement action against Google for its app store payment practices.
"When it comes to how people use mobile phones, Apple and Google hold all the cards," said Andrea Coscelli, Chief Executive of the CMA, in a statement. "As good as many of their services and products are, their strong grip on mobile ecosystems allows them to shut out competitors, holding back the British tech sector and limiting choice."
The decision to open a formal investigation follows the CMA's year-long study of the mobile ecosystem. The competition watchdog's findings have been published in a report that concludes Apple and Google have a duopoly that limits competition.
IT helpdesk-turned-workflow software company ServiceNow is to acquire Hitch Works, which produces software to help organizations better use their employees' existing skills.
Hitch Works focuses on "AI‑powered skills insights", which will be added to ServiceNow's Now Platform to help customers with talent gaps by tying employee learning and development to workforce planning.
ServiceNow said the purchase is designed to help companies under immense pressure to attract, train, and retain an effective workforce.
TomTom says it is laying off 10 percent of its global workforce due to advances in automation technology and greater use of digital techniques in its mapmaking process.
The planned cuts will equate to about 500 employees at the Netherlands-based geolocation tech specialist, which was hit hard by the pandemic and remains in recovery mode.
"Higher levels of automation and the integration of a variety of digital sources will result in fresher and richer maps, with wider coverage," said CEO Harold Goddijn. "These better maps will improve our product offerings and allow us to address a broader market, both in the Automotive and Enterprise businesses."
Tesla supremo Elon Musk has declared that executive staff at his battery-powered vehicle biz shall not work from afar.
"Anyone who wishes to do remote work must be in the office for a minimum (and I mean minimum) of 40 hours per week or depart Tesla," Musk's missive mandates. "This is less than we ask of factory workers."
A California Right to Repair bill, SB 983, died in committee last week, despite broad consumer support for fixable products.
It's not clear who killed the bill, but Right to Repair advocates point to the usual suspects – the tech companies that benefit by controlling who can repair their goods and that have lobbied against Right to Repair bills all over the US.
"It happened in the most shadowy, unaccountable part of the process, so it's hard to know exactly what happened," said Nathan Proctor, US Public Interest Research Groups (PIRG) senior Right to Repair campaign director, in a message to The Register.
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