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Switzerland, Facing an Unprecedented Power Shortage, Contemplates a Partial Ban on the Use of Electric Vehicles

It turns out that you can have battery-powered cars, or you can have renewable energy, but you can’t have both.

eugyppius: a plague chronicle | December 1, 2022

The Swiss Confederation usually imports electricity from France and Germany to keep the lights on over the winter, but this year neither country has any power to spare. Many French nuclear power plants are down after years of postponed maintenance, while in Germany we suffer from a superfluity of idle wind turbines and a (self-imposed) shortage of natural gas.

The Federal Council of Switzerland has therefore published draft legislation, which outlines four tiers of escalating measures to conserve electricity and avert potential blackouts. The first prescribes a lot of temperature restrictions for things like refrigerators and washing machines. The second includes more unusual rules, such as the demand that heating in clubs and discotheques “be set to the lowest level or switched off completely,” and that “streaming services … limit resolution of their content to standard definition.” The third foresees cutting business hours, banning the use of Blue Ray players and gaming computers, and also limiting the use of electric cars, which should be driven only when absolutely necessary. A fourth and final tier mandates closure of ski facilities, casinos, cinemas, theatre and the opera.

A lot of these rules look unenforceable, but they said the same thing about contact restrictions during the pandemic. It turns out that the state really can prevent you from socialising with people in your own home if it wants to, especially when there’s no shortage of prying neighbours eager to snitch.

Feasibility isn’t the point, though. It’s the optics here that are most astounding. Electric vehicles, which politicians have heavily subsidised as one of their primary policy responses to climate change, are just now crashing against that other great arm of the green agenda, namely renewable energy. You can’t drive everyone into ever greater dependence upon the electrical grid, while also orchestrating an energy transition to wind (which hardly blows in Germany, except in the north) and solar (which generates no meaningful power in the depths of the Central European winter). Gas from Russia was the magic ingredient that kept the whole renewables charade going, and we’re out of that now. There’s no way to cover up the failure; not even the green-friendly German media has any excuse or messaging angle here.

December 3, 2022 - Posted by | Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity |

4 Comments »

  1. Noted.

    (I admit to initial confusion regarding the first paragraph’s “… a superfluity of idle wind turbines…,” but I guess that’s covered in the concluding paragraph.)

    Like

    Comment by roberthstiver | December 3, 2022 | Reply

  2. Not to get too excited here! The problem is only temporary for the following reasons.

    1. With global depopulation underway, there will soon be fewer people driving cars. Probably just the ruling class, and that will conserve most of the electric power required and reduce the carbon footprint. By then farting cows will also have been reduced to a handful, kept just as souvenirs.
    2. As soon as they install photoelectric panels on the outsides of cars, as well as mini wind turbines on the roofs of cars, the lack of needed energy will be solved.. They could also allow for hybrid production of power by including a mini internal combustion engine in the car, and a one pint gas tank.
    3. The residual world population (those permitted to live) will not need to drive as much. Bezos will deliver your allotment of artificial meat (courtesy of Bill Gates and Richard Branson), edible insects and other goodies by drone.
    4. Soon they will have installed “ministries of truth” in all countries and you won’t be bothered anymore by false narratives against climate change.

    Just stay optimistic, chanting the slogan “on with Big Brother”, and you will own nothing and be deliriously happy. Schwab guarantees it.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by Peter | December 3, 2022 | Reply

    • Nice riff — you’re not just blowin’ smoke, or pissin’ in the wind, or “passing gas” a la those cows….

      Like

      Comment by roberthstiver | December 3, 2022 | Reply

    • Re: note 2. In Australia, the World Solar Challenge is a ‘race’ between Darwin and Adelaide for solar powered cars. So PV panel power is not unknown, just not widely used. However, Summer in Australia is not the same as Winter in Europe, and the number of PV panels required for a European car might make it totally impractical, let alone unaffordable.

      Liked by 1 person

      Comment by Bill Francis | December 5, 2022 | Reply


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