How many ways can solar fail before these nuts move on to something better?
Category Archives: Energy efficiency
The elites in CA and New England get what they deserve, brownouts and higher costs, that hurt the economy and the poor.
Back in 2009 NYS “imposed the so-called 18-a energy surcharge on ratepayers” in order to finance so-called “green” agenda of energy saving/conservation programs. In theory this would help finance, for example, lower cost insulation, or perhaps subsidize replacing water heaters, etc. In other words, the usual list… An arguable process, to be sure, and bringing up the whole issue of “special” fees, etc. to handle items that should be from general tax revenue, but almost defensible. Almost…
Except that…. eyup, you know where we’re going…
Rayne is a scientist of great insights and command of the tools. He also is quite productive as a writer and analyst.
Hydropower is important in the Northwest and is being neglected.
Gordon Fulks PhD Physics, explains the silliness of the Cuisinarts.
This is an OP ED in the Oregonian, the newspaper of record in the state as I understand..
Green Energy – Green Deception
Wealthy corporate giants like Apple and Google now hawk not only their innovations in the virtual world but an ever greater commitment to ‘Green Energy.’ Even Portland General Electric relentlessly hawks their Green Energy. What amazing virtue! What progress! But is it? There are dark clouds on the horizon, as we turn away from objective science and engineering to a look-alike promoted by the politically connected but scientifically challenged.
One of the dark clouds is certainly climate hysteria, which once motivated societies to sacrifice virgins to appease the climate gods, and today seems intent on merely sacrificing industrialization. But that is not my concern here.
I wonder why we are abandoning ‘Efficient Energy’ in favor of ‘Virtual Energy’ and why we are abandoning ‘Efficient Fuels’ in favor of ‘Politically Correct Fuels.’ I wonder why we are sacrificing our last open spaces to post-modern industrialization, why we are burning our food for fuel via ethanol, and
why we are destroying the earth’s last remaining rainforests to grow ‘bio-diesel.’
For someone who has long championed science and the environment, the utter folly I see before me is heartbreaking.
The Sierra Club I once admired is now taking money from the natural gas industry to
drive competing coal out of business and move us into the ‘Brownout Age.’
But how can that be? Surely, the natural gas industry will be driven out of business too, if green wins over fossil fuel. Not so! Technology is more complicated than simplistic good versus evil. The game with green is to ignore the fatal downside and keep subsidizing the corruption and stupidity.
If subsidies end, the nonsense will stop. Free markets quickly determine what makes sense. There would be no need for me to explain complexities to those sold on slogans. Thank god we still have competent engineers fighting to keep the lights on. For all others, let me continue.
Wind is very diffuse, requiring a vast environmental and financial footprint to generate significant power. Even then the power is far inferior to that produced by conventional means, because it is intermittent and comes when least needed. This can be solved by pumped storage, by backup from conventional sources or by tailoring usage to the availability of the wind. All of these are prohibitively
expensive with wind, because wind is already prohibitively expensive.
Pumped storage works well with cheap nuclear power, because it allows power plants to run continuously, storing power at night for use the next day. Who cares if this increases the wholesale cost of power from 2 to 3 cents/kw-hr? But the equivalent 50% increase in the cost of wind power is prohibitive.
Backup of wind power by conventional sources is greatly inefficient. Hydroelectric systems do not like to be constantly turned on and off in response to fickle wind. And migrating salmon suffer nitrogen induced fatalities, if water has to spilled without going through the turbines. Besides, we just end up trading inexpensive hydro for expensive wind.
Backup by nuclear or fossil fuel is extremely inefficient. Large thermal plants can take days to come up to steam, forcing operators to keep them running constantly to backup wind.
Building specialized natural gas-fired power plants that can be switched on quickly is also foolish, because they are inefficient. We would be much better off scraping wind altogether and building super efficient gas-turbine power plants that run continuously. Birds and bats would live longer. Those
concerned about their ‘carbon footprint’ would certainly thank us too.
Unfortunately, too many captains of modern industry live in a virtual world, selling gadgets, services, and even real power while promoting only the virtual.
Gordon J. Fulks, Ph.D. lives in Corbett, Oregon, and can be reached at email@example.com. He holds a doctorate in
physics from the University of Chicago, Laboratory for Astrophysics and Space Research. He does not work for any energy or climate industry.
Viv Forbes makes sense, now doesn’t she?
Why do we ignore basics.
Go for it Marita. Energy independence is something everyone claims to desire. It’s how to get there that’s the disagreement.
It’s easy to pander to the Luddites.
A typical coal plant is 1000 MW and used to cost 1 billion to build. This Mississippi disaster is now breaking a record for stupid.
Latest from the EPA, they want to clean the air but guarantee electricity availability.
Now let’s assume that the West was committed to piddle power from solar and wind and willing to shut up coal, even nuclear energy plants and compromise the grid or increase prices and decrease access, increasing dependence on Russian Natural Gas.
Imagine, to borrow from John Lennon the peacenik.
Lookee hear at the great Climate Depot website.
The Tesla electric car is a darling of the Rich and Yuppie enviro crowd who want to believe it’s a “green” vehicle and want to show off their tree hugging credentials. Of course the truth ain’t quite that simple, but that’s a discussion for another day.
That being said, it seems to have run afoul of political business as usual in… New Jersey. Continue reading
Why do I have my doubts about the reasons Walmart would buy Hydrogen cell tech?
Now an alternative energy project in Nevada burns birds out of the air.
These enviros are monsters. First the turbines, now the mirrors.
People in countries such as Pakistan, where poverty really does mean starving to death (one of the very positive things about the US is that no one, aside from the occasional “outlier” that can never be completely cleared, does so), are avidly looking at developing their coal resources. Continue reading