January 2, 2023

Gross domestic Problem

my reading list gets more bizarre?

Gross domestic Problem
Photo by Nicolas HIPPERT / Unsplash
London Stock Exchange entrance
Photo by David Vincent / Unsplash

From the town and to the world?

A bit of a pretentious start. From the town and to the world, but it is a message that I hope reaches a wider audience.

It was with some shock that I heard about one of my American relatives, poor Franklin, who endured a trip to hospital in an air ambulance, and was successfully treated for an abscess behind his eye. Get well soon, Frank.

One of the major problems in living in a town, at the end of the bus route, and at the edge of the sea, is that you are so far away from those who you care about. Salcombe is one of those places where it takes a toll, a price for living so far off the beaten track. A beautiful place that is beguiling.

I am a consummate consumer, I am a fan of technology of most forms. I have often written about how the rise of present technology is just the beginning, and that is an absolute fact.

Recently, it is becoming more and more apparent that the increase in the gross domestic product is leading to an increase in gross domestic profits. Our world is seeing the absolutely palpable effects of global warming and extinction of wildlife, flora, and fauna. This to any sensible person is a shocking fact. A scary fact of upsetting proportions.

I do not see how we can completely move away from technology, and I hope that technology will be used in ways to mitigate global warming and increased industrialisation. The increase in GDP gross domestic profit is another matter.

I have always taken an interest in civilian nuclear power, perhaps a morbid interest. I see nuclear power as a short to medium term solution to the need to generate power and move away from fossil fuels. Okay, there maybe some who disagree with my viewpoint, I accept that it might be a difficult one to completely justify. I always make the point that I am not in favour of nuclear weapons, but nuclear power is another matter.

Compared to the United Kingdom today, the French nuclear programme is wholly owned by a company called EDF, Electricity De France, a state run company. Private enterprise runs our electricity companies. The difference between the two countries is palpable. We pay more for our electricity, French citizens pay less for their electricity. EDF runs British nuclear power stations for profit, that profit goes back to the French state, and indirectly their citizens.

At the time of writing, there are five British power stations that supply power to our national grid, which provide power to 3.5 million homes. These power stations are used to prevent blackouts during the winter months. It is important to note that these power stations have had service life extensions, beyond their original ’shut down’ date. This has been made increasingly necessary by the severe energy crisis. Their long-term future is becoming unsure for technological and economic reasons. Indeed, the operator, EDF, might ‘pull the plug’ on these five power stations for primarily economic reasons. Their duty is to make profit for the French state. After all, they are wholly state run. The irony of this is not lost on me.

I have started reading a book called ‘The Radiance of France, Nuclear Power and National Identity after World War 2 (second edition)’. It is an interesting read and the author Gabrielle Hecht shows how the nuclear industry became integral to France’s revival after World War Two. It is a social study of technology. To me, a fascinating book, to others perhaps not.

Before people start shouting at me, I strongly agree that we have to sort out the problem of long-term storage of nuclear waste. This is an issue that has been fudged. We can sort the issue. It just takes resolve. We must grasp the nettle.