Thursday 14 December 2017

Kevin Myers: Sure wind is great and part of the solution to our energy needs, but it is only top-up power

Kevin Myers

THIS winter has now lasted three full months: the frozen snows still lie along the ridgelines of the Wicklow hills, just as they did at the end of November.

During this cold period -- not a snap but an entire season, the coldest since 1963, and bidding fair to outdo that terrible year -- there has been hardly a breath of wind to stir a single tissue held at arm's length, never mind power a windmill. Had we depended solely on wind power to have stayed warm in the past few months, this island would be doomed to rediscovery in 10,000 years hence, intact, frozen but baffled in sheet-ice, like those unfortunate mammoths that occasionally enliven Siberian cuisine.

So many political conversations in Ireland are entirely one-way, and consist of the technically-unlettered piety of the speakers, with their holier-than-thou dogmas. Once upon a time, such orgies of hallucinatory irrationality were called "visions", and basilicas were built to celebrate them. Nowadays, the irrationalism calls itself "environmentalism", and wins all its arguments simply by declaring its moral superiority. This goes: "If you're against me, you're an evil capitalist in favour of extinction of many species, and the drowning of millions, and you're horrible, and I hate you."

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