A couple of years ago the political pundits Anthony King and Ivor Crewe published a book, "The Blunders of our Governments" depicting major errors of British governments in recent years. These ranged from Mrs Thatcher's Poll Tax, Pension Mis-Selling, entry to the ERM at the wrong price so subsequent humiliating exit from it, the Millennium Dome, Working Tax Credits, and the attempt to finance an extension of the London underground through a Public Private Partnership.
If and when an updated edition is produced thee can be little doubt that the Hinkley Point C Nuclear power station will be added to the list.
- uses, according to George Monbiot, who knows about these things and whom many of us trust, outdated technology
- is to be built by the 85% state owned French company EDF, who are already years behind-hand with similar projects in other countries
- is expected to cost £24.5 billion, but will probably over-run
- is to be largely financed by the Chinese Government, not at present the most compatible with our government's much vaunted emphasis on British norms and values. . .
- . . .but, if the project falters, much of the Chinese expenditure is to be guaranteed by the British government
- will produce electricity at double the current price, and this is guaranteed, with adjustment for inflation, for 30 years.
An alternative use of the Hinkley Point area was to build some wind-farms, but locals objected on the grounds that a blade from one to the wind turbines might be blown off and do damage.
Our government hails this dubious nuclear project, for which the foreign owned state sectors will take the profit if it is successful, but for which the British taxpayer will pay if it fails, a great success.
At the same time our government is cutting back on support for renewable energy projects on the grounds that they are so successful we are in danger of exceeding our targets for the reduction of carbon emissions.
I shudder to think what our right wing press would be saying if a Corbyn government were making such daft decisions.