Utility Week

UTILITY Week 21st November 2014

Utility Week - authoritative, impartial and essential reading for senior people within utilities, regulators and government

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UtILItY WeeK | 21st - 27th November 2014 | 31 Community Disconnector Editor: ellen bennett, t: 01342 332084, e: ellen.bennett@fav-house.com; News editor: Jillian Ambrose, t: 01342 332061, e: jillian.ambrose@fav-house.com; Associate news editor: mathew beech, t: 01342 332082, e: mathew.beech@fav-house.com; Energy correspondent: Joyeeta Basu, t: 01342 332110, e: joyeeta.basu@fav-house.com; Insights editor: Jane Gray, t: 01342 332087, e: jane.gray@fav-house.com; Research analyst: vidhu Dutt, t: 01342 332026, e: vidhu.dutt@fav-house.com; Reporter: Lucinda Dann, t: 01342 332083; Business development manager: ed roberts, t: 01342 332067, e: ed.roberts@ fav-house.com; Sales executive: hayley Cronin, t: 01342 332077, e: hayley.cronin@ fav-house.com; Publisher: Amanda barnes, e: amanda.barnes@fav-house.com. General enquiries: 01342 332000; Subscriptions: UK £577 per year, overseas £689 per year, t: 020 8955 7045. ISSN: 1356-5532. Registered as a newspaper at the Post Office. Printed by: buxton Press, Palace road, buxton, Derbyshire sK17 6Ae. Published by: Faversham house Ltd, Windsor Court, Wood street, east Grinstead, West sussex rh19 1UZ Let's talk about it Climate change is a serious issue that affects every one of us, and so every one of us ought to be interested in it. But are we? Dis- connector can't help but suspect it is more of an issue to middle class metropolitan liberals than to white van man, who is too busy roaring around town in his van leering out the window at passing women. It's understandable, then, that the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) wants to educate the great British pub- lic about climate change, energy efficiency and the rest. Govern- ment departments have always been keen on public information campaigns, but the great man (Disconnector, that is, not the energy secretary) is not sure that Twitter is the medium for them. On 25 November, Decc is con- ducting what is called a Tweeta- thon, backed by 'partners' such as wildlife charities and, er, Microso, when for a whole 24 hours those involved will talk about nothing but climate change. (For those of you who want to follow proceedings, the hashtag is #BackClimateAction.) Critics of climate activists accuse them of being self- righteous windbags, and Discon- nector is not sure that taking to Twitter is a way to disabuse them. Or to reach a wider audi- ence, for that matter. Let's face it, if you're on Twitter at all, you probably already know about climate change and are already Tweeting your concern to any- Disconnector one who will listen. You're not going to reach white van man and his mates that way – unless you write your climate change messages on placards and get women in mini-skirts to parade on the high street with them. Serves you right Disconnector wonders, while we're here, if anyone at Decc has calculated the carbon footprint of a Tweetathon? Global IT companies such as Facebook, Google and Twitter are huge consumers of electricity and require dedicated power plants to run concentrations of servers that can have the same square footage as a small town. Some positive actions had better come from all the Tweet- ing, since the staging of the event will definitely have a cost to the climate. The worst thing about the power-hungry computer servers that run some of our most cher- ished IT services is that they also give off an enormous amount of heat, most of which is wasted. Indeed, it takes yet more power to refrigerate the facilities that house them. At least on that front there has been some progress. German company Cloud & Heat is offer- ing free central heating to home- owners willing to house one of its servers on their property. Customers will have to pay for the fire-proof housing required to secure the computers – which costs roughly the same as a standard domestic boiler – but aer that Cloud & Heat will pay for the electricity required to power it and the homeowner gets free heat. Of course they also get a very large, noisy grey steel box in their living room. And of course it will be blasting out heat whether it's raining or shining outside… on second thoughts it's hard to see how the initiative would work in practice. If only there were some sort of global online community we could ask… Smelly cat Disconnector's heart was warmed by the tale reported in the media of the cat that fell 20 into a sewage tank at a West Lothian works. It took a joint operation by firefighters and animal rescue staff to res- cue the animal, since dubbed Fireman Sam. Firefighters had to descend into the tank by ladder and coax the animal into a cage before it could be hoisted out. The bedraggled animal was suffering from weight loss, indicating that he had been down there for some time, and could have drowned had heavy rain raised the water level. The black and white male cat is now being cared for at the Edinburgh and Lothians Animal Rescue Centre, and the charity says it is hoping to find his owner – though not nearly as much as the owner is hoping they'll give him a good wash first, thinks Disconnector. 3,580 Average circulation Jan–Dec 2013 subscriptions: UK £577 per year, overseas £689 per year fhcustomerservices@ abacusemedia.com Matt Hancock @matthancockmp Arriving in Blackpool College to lay the foundation stone not just for our National Shale College but for a new shale industry 3WhitehallPlace @3WhitehallPlace Today we've created the Royal College of Fracking, Blackpool, where students can learn how to make tea and bacon sandwiches for Polish drillers The White House @WhiteHouse FACT: President Obama just set a new target to cut US carbon pollution by 26-28% by 2025. #ActOnClimate Herman Van Rompuy @euHvR We welcome today's US-China #climate announcement, answering EU leaders' call to put forward targets for cutting greenhouse gas emissions Maf Smith @SmithMaf @EdwardDaveyMP "onshore wind is the cheapest form of renewables and will soon be the cheapest full stop" #rukace14 Will Nichols @WillN_BG Anyone else finding oblique Simpsons references in the @IEA's World Energy Outlook report? #WEO14 Mark Lynas @mark_lynas EU is scrapping science advisor post, following demands from @Greenpeace & others. Dark day for science in Europe Duncan Hothersall @dhothersall @emilygosden @jessbrammar @DECCgovuk "Fracking – it's as safe as allowing your child to play with boiling water" Emily Gosden @emilygosden Good job it's mild out... EDF pushes back nuclear restart dates yet again. Two reactors delayed from Nov 16 to 22, third from Nov 22 to 26 Rich Hall @richonlyinname Appears Ofgem is operating a one-in, one-out policy on its naughty step: as Economy Energy gets off, ScottishPower gets on. Oi, no trainers Top Tweets

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