The power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them… To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just as long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies – all this is indispensably necessary. Even in using the word doublethink it is necessary to exercise doublethink. For by using the word one admits that one is tampering with reality; by a fresh act of doublethink one erases this knowledge; and so on indefinitely, with the lie always one leap ahead of the truth.
George Orwell 1984 
We live in a world where Government energy policies make electricity more expensive and Government blames power companies for these higher prices. We live in a world where Government takes the wrecking ball to power stations cutting our generation capacity margins to wafer thin levels but then threatens the power companies with sanctions should power supplies fail. We live in a world…
…. where Government wants to freeze energy prices, creating losses for power companies that are then expected to invest billions in new energy infrastructure to replace that infrastructure newly wrecked by Government. We live in a world where intermittent and expensive renewable energy is described as secure and cheap. We live in a world where the language of natural science and energy engineering has been re-written by Greenthinkers so that the ordinary Man no longer understands what is going on and is excluded from the debate since only Greenthinkers know and understand the rules of the false logic that is applied. We live in a world where cheap and reliable supplies of electricity defines our security and prosperity.
I have been wanting to write this article on carbon capture and storage (CCS) for some time but, not knowing if I would be able to contain my frustration at this most bonkers of all energy strategies that the Government has in its arsenal, I have refrained. However, with the publication of a report on Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) this week from the UK energy and Climate Change Committee , the time now seems ripe to put pen to paper. Before going on to examine the arguments against CCS I want to begin by describing the false pretexts in which the whole ludicrous concept exists.
Why does the concept of CCS exist?
The only reason that the concept of CCS exists is to assist the UK and other nations to meet CO2 emissions reduction targets imposed by the EU and UK 2008 Climate Change Act .
Meeting these targets will have close to zero impact on the natural world. The only guarantee is that electricity prices will rise significantly and energy poverty will spread. The logical way to deal with these legally binding targets is to abolish them.
Why do CO2 reduction targets exist?
Rising CO2 levels in Earth’s atmosphere has raised concern that the enhanced greenhouse effect may cause catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (CAGW). A New Science has been developed to characterise and forecast the nature of this problem. Since this New Science was created, enough time has past and empirical data gathered to show that the dire consequences that were forecast initially have not yet come to pass and show little sign of doing so (Figure 1). The logical outcome therefore would be to revise or abolish the CO2 reduction targets in light of the new evidence.
Figure 1 It is difficult to compare IPCC computer model forecasts of future temperature trajectories with reality for a number of reasons. First, the IPCC anchor their latest scenarios on the year 2000 which happened to be a cold La Nina year and second this only leaves 14 years to compare the models with what actually has come to pass . The rate of temperature change in models compared with reality is what I try to present here for three of the main IPCC multi model averages. It should be plain to see that the B1 ensemble is that which lies closest to the actual temperature trajectory of the last 54 years and that temperatures would have to take off in spectacular fashion to get anywhere close to the alarmist A1B or A2 scenarios, and show no signs of doing so. It must also be born in mind that much of the variance observed in the HadCRUT4  observations are down to natural processes. The fact that the HadCRUT4 temperature record falls below the B1 line on this chart is not significant since this is a coincidence of the higher temperature in the start year, 1960. The point is to compare the gradients of the real world with the model world.
For decades a large group of traditional scientists have warned that this New Science is not credible since it is often based on 1) partial data, 2) flawed data, 3) excludes some key natural data [note 1] and 4) is founded upon unproven theories and principles. Traditional scientists are not surprised that the New Science models do not work since data inputs are both wrong and incomplete. However, New Science, with flexible rules, has thus far succeeded in arguing that black is white, cold is hot and wrong is right. The logical behaviour is to conclude that CO2 emissions are not the serious problem forecast a decade ago and to abandon energy policies predicated exclusively on CO2 emissions reductions.
Emissions targets so far have failed to make a significant difference
The strategies deployed by Europe to reduce CO2 emissions way well have lowered emissions at the margin but they have had no discernible impact at the global level (Figure 2). Everything done so far has demonstrably been a waste of time, energy, money and prosperity. The rational response is to abandon the folly like Japan and Canada have already done. While European strategy has failed to reduce global emissions, CO2 emissions have failed to raise global temperatures since 1997 as well. This is the key point. If it were the case that temperatures were rising out of control then we should all be backing measures to address the problem. But they are not (Figure 1).
Figure 2 Global fossil fuel consumption expressed in millions of tonnes of oil equivalent (mmtoe) from the 2013 BP statistical review of world energy. Mmtoe converted to CO2 by assuming CH2 as general formula for oil with molecular weight=14 atomic mass units (amu) and a molecular weight for CO2=44 amu. The arrows show landmark dates in the Kyoto process. During this period, CO2 emissions accelerated. The only process to halt the relentless rise in CO2 emissions is spikes in the oil price causing recessions in 1974, 1979 and again in 2008.
CCS targets only a small part of the whole problem
Most of the fossil fuels we burn are in the form of petroleum in transport and natural gas for space heating. This makes up about 74% of our total emissions that cannot be targeted by CCS unless we convert to electric transport and space heating (heat pumps) which no one can afford to do. Coal and gas burned in power stations makes up only about 18% of our total emissions. Even if we were to fit CCS to all power stations in the UK (which will never happen) it is a very expensive partial solution to the perceived problem. It is a waste of time and money.
Figure 3 Energy use in the UK in 2012 based on this DECC Sankey diagram of UK energy flows. Only 18% of the energy used in this country is consumed in power stations that may potentially be targeted by CCS. Electricity other = nuclear+ hydro+ other renewables.
In summary, CCS exists only to fulfil obligations to reduce CO2 emissions. All strategies to significantly lower global emissions have thus far failed and will continue to do so. Luckily, atmospheric CO2 is proving to be less harmful than climate scientists would have us believe. CCS is yet another strategy that will fail to tackle an exaggerated problem.
The arguments against CCS
Having set the scene it is now time to look specifically at the arguments against CCS. The three main arguments are in fact all linked to each other.
The Energy Cost
Engineering the Future stated all of the CCS technologies currently available would require approximately 20–25% more coal or 10–15% more natural gas to be burned to produce the same amount of electricity. [ref 2, p15]
The UK, together with the rest of Europe is running low on indigenous primary energy supplies (Figure 4). There are only two rational responses to this serious problem. 1) We must do all we can to boost sensible indigenous energy production and 2) we must do all we can to reduce energy consumption through energy efficiency and energy conservation strategies. CCS takes us in the opposite direction.
Figure 4 Primary energy production in Europe peaked in 1996, marked by the arrow. Unilateral effort to combat CO2 emissions and global warming has resulted in significant growth of expensive, unreliable electricity (other renewables) that has partly offset decline in oil, gas, coal and nuclear that have been largely neglected on this side of the Atlantic. Every year, Europe must dip deeper into competitive global energy markets, sending prices higher.
The energy costs include energy embedded in massive engineering at power stations, pumping stations, pipelines and burial sites. Coal is burned to create all that steel. And energy running costs to capture, transport and compress CO2. This is going to add to the UK’s, and the rest of Europe’s energy import bills and dependency on imported fuel. The exact opposite of what we should be planning for. And these additional energy costs will be added directly to consumer electricity bills.
The Efficiency Cost
The energy efficiency of a large coal fired power station may be around 35%. That is 35% of the energy contained in the coal is converted to electricity and the remaining 65% is lost as waste heat. This waste heat is a serious problem for fossil fuel based generation and the sensible, traditional science and engineering approach would be to devise ways to address this problem. These strategies do of course exist in the form of combined heat and power generation where waste heat is used to heat homes or greenhouses and modern ultra supercritical coal fired power stations that can be 42% efficient. That 7% uplift in efficiency may not seem a lot but it means the plant will consume 20% less coal.
CCS takes us in the exact opposite direction. A 25% energy penalty on a 35% energy efficient plant will reduce the overall thermal efficiency to 26%. It is totally bonkers.
The Economic Cost
Mr Allam of NET Power highlighted that a power plant with CCS costs 50% to 80% more to generate electricity than power plant without CCS. The CCS Cost Reduction Taskforce’s 2013 final report estimated that the first set of CCS projects may have costs in the range of £150–200 per megawatt hour (roughly three times as expensive as fossil fuel plant without CCS), a figure largely supported by industry. The main reason for this is the high energy consumption of powering the CCS equipment, especially the carbon capture stage of the process. 
One would think that any MP, most of whom claim concern on high electricity prices, would read this and conclude that the proposals are unworkable. How can they reconcile in their own minds the concern for high electricity prices with the intention of government to subsidise measures that may result in a threefold increase of these same prices they are so concerned about. And there are no benefits for consumers.
The Benefits of CCS
I personally cannot see any benefits in CCS (without EOR) but the report  lists what The Government sees as benefits and so here is a sample:
CCS could be a key technology to help decarbonise the UK’s power and industrial sectors
The Government needs to explain why this is a benefit. Other countries will be carrying on as normal while the UK struggles with expensive electricity prices and unreliable supplies.
CCS could provide wider economic benefits.
How can a technology that increases electricity prices offer economic benefits? The government fantasises that the UK may become a leading exporter of CCS technology overlooking the fact that the whole concept is bonkers and no one will ever want to buy it. And generally speaking the technology is not bespoke.
CCS could open up the potential to utilise the UK’s offshore geological storage capacity
What benefit is there for anyone in opening up geological storage capacity? CCS costs a lot of money, uses a lot of energy and provides no benefits to consumers. End of story.
CCS with EOR
One redeeming feature of this report is that it has a lengthy and positive section on using CO2 injection to enhance oil recovery (EOR) in the North Sea. The motive here is not to save Man from himself but to make money. Given the right sub-surface conditions, injecting CO2 into a mature oil field may mobilise some of the remaining oil. This residual oil occurs as isolated droplets surrounded by water in minute pore spaces. The CO2 expands the oil joining the droplets together allowing some of it to flow. It has been proven to work like magic.
In the USA a world famous project on the Canadian border of N Dakota uses lignite as feedstock for a syn gas plant where it is converted to methane and CO2 . The methane goes to the US grid while the CO2 is piped to the Weyburn Field in Canada where it is injected and has greatly enhanced oil recovery .
Doing this with CO2 captured from UK power stations in theory makes good sense. However, the costs may be too high. But with this approach there is at least a revenue stream to fund the whole exercise from additional oil production, that the UK sorely needs with added benefits for companies able to defer the growing costs associated with decommissioning platforms and wider benefits for society from extending the life of the North Sea by maybe 30 years.
Stuck in a time warp
It seems like the UK Government competition to fund a £1,000,000,000 CCS demonstration project has been going on for ever. The report provides a handy table providing a time line for the main decision points and I am surprised to see that it only began back in 2007, a mere 7 years ago  (Figure 5). In 2007, UK primary energy production was 171 million tonnes oil equivalent (mTOE). In 2012 that had fallen to 118 mTOE, down 31%!. And a lot lower today. The members of the Energy and Climate Change Committee need to ask themselves what they have done to mitigate this catastrophe in the 7 years they have been pondering CCS?
At the beginning of this process BP came up with a world class plan to pipe CO2 from Peterhead power station to the Miller Oil Field to enhance oil recovery . The government of the day refused to support it. It is hugely ironic that this same power station features in the demonstration projects to win government funding today with the difference that enhanced oil recovery does not feature in the plan. The new plan is to simply demonstrate something worthless. Shell, one of the partners in the scheme will benefit from delaying the decommissioning costs of the Goldeneye platform where production began in 2008, 1 year after the CCS competition.
Figure 5 The woeful record of the UK government CCS competition .
We need to ask why we are stuck in this time warp. The answer is simple. The nonsense that is CCS and Greenthinking can exist in the minds of politicians and Greenthinkers but not in the real world that is still ruled by economics and thermodynamics. Until energy policy is reformulated along lines that are designed to benefit consumers and the energy companies this state of limbo will persist to the great detriment of all involved.
[Note 1] Climate models that strive to predict the future trajectory of lower troposphere temperatures on Earth do not include the following key varaibales: a) natural cyclic changes in atmospheric water vapour, b) natural cyclic changes in cloud cover, c) natural changes in the dynamics of ocean current circulation, d) changes in atmospheric convection rates in response to natural changes in temperature, e) natural cyclical changes in sea ice cover, f) future volcanic eruptions, and g) spectral changes in solar output and how these may impact patterns of atmospheric circulation. The models do not include these vital variables because the history of this variability is poorly understood and the future variance is impossible to predict. It is simply impossible for climate models to work until all of these variables are understood and constrained.
 Wikipedia: Doublethink
 House of Commons Energy and Climate Change Committee: Carbon capture and storage
 Climate Change Act 2008
 IPCC AR4 WGI Summary for policymakers
 Woodfortrees HadCRUT4
 Dakota Gasification Company
 Cenovus Energy: Weyburn oil field
 Wikipedia: Peterhead Power Station