Emmanuel Macron’s hold on the French presidency is under serious threat because the ultra-right-wing candidate, Marine Le Pen, hammered at the cost of the crisis of life.
Macron has spent most of his campaign time portraying himself as a super-statesman in the Ukraine crisis, while Le Pen’s National Rally Party (he has distanced himself from the disgusting gaze of his father, Jean-Marie Le Pen), has focused on pocket book issues.
The reality is that when the market price of natural gas has tripled and inflation is about to rise above $ 100-a-barrel of oil, France offers the best vaccine among the seven countries.
Looking ahead: Boris Johnson’s new nuclear embrace will hopefully create some momentum around the nuclear alternative
The warm embrace of nuclear energy, which occasionally requires refinancing of the Electric de France (EDF), means that if all nuclear power plants were up and running, France would be able to generate 70.6 percent of its electricity from this source.
Another consequence is that French inflation, rising to 4.5 percent in March, is about half that of the United Kingdom.
The case for more nuclear weapons in the UK is irreversible. As much as wind power is attractive, and a more aggressive goal for the offshore generation must be a good thing, it is never going to be the ultimate solution to Britain’s energy needs. As we have learned this year, climate change may cause air to flow more violently, but the technology to capture and store electrical energy using fuel cells is somewhat off.
Furthermore, as recent motor sales data shows, the public’s new love affair with electric cars means the possibility of a rapid increase in demand for electricity.
Boris Johnson’s new nuclear embrace, as described in the Energy Security Strategy, will hopefully create some momentum around the nuclear alternative.
In fact, the larger the baseload, the less dependent the UK will be on imported carbon-emitting energy sources.
And although the new super-nuclear plant built by EDF at Hinkley Point in Somerset is a victory for engineering and reasonably on schedule, it will not be in line until 2026-27.
Until then, some of Britain’s oldest trees will no longer be usable.
At present, nuclear is not the short-term answer to anything.
The biggest hurdle is money, and subsequent governments have struggled to raise funds for the private sector in order to get back to Tony Blair.
Hinkley only possible because EDF and Chinese investors supported the project, and George Osborne offered a strike price for the final output, which at the time – but no longer – looked incredibly generous.
Johnson has put £ 100m behind the clock £ 20billion Sizewell C, and may have to pay a lot more after the decision to say goodbye to China.
The objective is to attract private sector investors outside the EDF using what is known as a regulated asset model. At the time of construction of the plant it basically pays a dividend income to the investors.
The Prime Minister is also keen on a Rolls-Royce small modular reactor based on the technology currently used to power submarines.
But there are terrible obstacles. Even if existing nuclear sites like Hartlepool are adapted, planning permission is a nightmare. And there is very little public discussion about waste storage and decommissioning costs.
A similar focus and application of Covid to the Americans in Los Alamos in World War II is needed to learn a lesson.
In case of emergency the government has to be prepared for huge expenses. Think about what the £ 70 billion furlough could do for power generation and net zero targets.
Click the bait
There is no one else in Britain, Europe or the United States who favors high streets or shopping centers, says George Weston, chief executive of ABF, the owner of fast-fashion giant Primark.
Its retail model works because it doesn’t have to worry about the complex logistics and delivery costs online.
Primark finally acknowledges that it needs a digital shop window to the world and wants to provide customers with easy access to information about the retailer’s new website at what price, in what size and with what level of durability.
New post-Kovid habits have become a hard wire, and the immediate response when I visit the new site is to wonder where the ‘add to basket’ function is buried.
How long ago did Primark ask itself the same question?