Hinkley C + QE = Slavery

The spectre of the British people as slaves of the new Chinese superpower just got a step closer.

The Brits have agreed to what must be the dumbest deal ever to be voluntarily undertaken by a national government that did not have a gun to its head.

I refer of course to their new nuclear power station which will be financed by the Chinese and built by the French using outdated technology. Never mind that the whole idea of a giant nuclear power station has been thoroughly discredited in Japan, the one the Brits chose is last decade’s model.

While the Japanese take themselves off the grid one home at a time, and the Germans decommission nuclear reactors as fast as possible, the Brits have got themselves a doozy.

And that is not the really stupidest part. the UK government have agreed to pay the Energy company EDF exactly twice the current price per unit of electricity, and they have guaranteed it for FORTY years.

But even that is not the stupidest part.

The Brits agreed to tie the price to the inflation index. The price of energy from Hinkley C will go up at the same rate as inflation for the next 40 years- I guess C stands for Costly.

Nobody knows what the long-term effect of QE will be, but many believe that inflation will be one very definite side-effect. QE was brought in to stop the entire system from collapsing, and to give the rich enough time to shovel their cash into assets that are inflation proof, like real estate, art and other collectibles. This weekend, the FT called QE a policy created “by the rich for the rich.”

So expect an explosion of inflation over the next decade. Its already started in central London, where property prices went up 10% last month alone.

So why does it matter that the price of energy from Hinkley C is inflation-linked you may ask. Inflation means the price of everything goes up, so that would include power, right? The answer is that not everything will rise – in particular, real wages are falling and will continue to fall as Europe adjusts to its new role as a second rate power compared to rising Asia.

And 40 years is too far into the future to even predict. It would be amazing if a new cheaper source of energy or some other social revolution had not occurred by then to revolutionise our use of energy.

And these pressurised water reactors are the wrong choice at a time when the chief scientific adviser at the government’s Energy Department suggests that, if integral fast reactors were deployed, the UK’s stockpile of nuclear waste could be used to generate enough low-carbon energy to meet all UK demand for 500 years. These reactors would keep recycling the waste until hardly any remained: solving three huge problems – energy supply, nuclear waste and climate change – at once. Thorium reactors use an element that’s already extracted in large quantities as an unwanted byproduct of other mining industries. They recycle their own waste, leaving almost nothing behind.

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