Maryland, quite possibly even more la-la land than California

While California has committed economic suicide with their ridiculous carbon trading plan that nobody wants, Maryland seems to think that magically, green jobs and non baseload power sources will “improve reliability” of electric power. From my perspective, seeing how well such ideas have worked out elsewhere, they are living in la-la land. They should ask Texas how wind power works out for them in peak demand times.

The reliability projections don’t instill confidence:

Maryland Climate Plan Passes Key Tests in UMD Studies

Improves Electric Reliability; Negligible Impact on Manufacturers

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Maryland’s plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions 25 percent by 2020 meets a series of benchmark tests set by state lawmakers, concludes a new pair of studies by the University of Maryland Center for Integrative Environmental Research (CIER). The findings should help clear the way for adoption of a full Climate Action Plan next year, the researchers say.

Maryland’s 2009 Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act ordered independent studies to make sure that its provisions won’t hurt the reliability of the state’s electricity supply or damage the manufacturing sector of the economy. The CIER studies give State plans a passing grade on these scores and project some upsides:

  • Improves reliability of electric service for consumers and industry;
  • No expected loss of jobs;
  • May stimulate some “green” jobs;
  • No economic harm to Maryland’s manufacturing sector.

“We can allay critics’ fears,” says University of Maryland School of Public Policy Professor Matthias Ruth, the study’s principal investigator and CIER director. “Our studies confirm that sound environmental responses to climate change do not have to come at the expense of Maryland’s economy, or put a crimp in the availability of electricity in the State. To the contrary, we see net benefits.”

These reports come as part of an ongoing effort by the state to assess the impact of Maryland’s developing Climate Action Plan (CAP) on the manufacturing sector and the wider state economy. Future studies are expected to assess manufacturing-specific and economy-wide impacts.

For example, the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act requires an additional independent study by 2015, with oversight from an industry-represented task force, evaluate climate policy effects on manufacturing.

Full Reports Available Here

“We expect manufacturing in Maryland, and its economy as a whole, to be agile enough to make the necessary changes in technologies and business practices to absorb what has been portrayed as a policy-induced shock on the economy,” concludes one of the new University of Maryland reports. “At worst, the CAP will become an indistinguishable part of a larger and longer-term trend of declining manufacturing employment in the state. At best, the CAP will generate new business opportunities and jobs.”

New “green” jobs would likely grow out of the work involved in emissions reductions, the study says. It does not forecast a specific number, but suggests the economic and policy atmosphere is ripe for green job growth: “Maryland stands to benefit from new employment opportunities that will support mitigation policies associated with the state’s CAP. Maryland must ensure that it continues to capitalize on its talented and skilled workforce and that policies and strategies are in place to support growth and attract new green jobs.”

The Maryland Department of Environment commissioned the studies. It is charged with submitting a tentative Climate Action Plan (CAP) to Gov. O’Malley by the end of 2011.

“These reports provide essential information about the early effects of implementing Maryland’s Climate Action Plan,” says Sean Williamson, CIER researcher and report co-author. “They should remove potential roadblocks and advance the process.”

Electric Report

    -

Meeting Maryland’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goals: Electrical Reliability Impacts from Maryland’s Climate Action Plan

Manufacturing Report

    -

Meeting Maryland’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goals: Manufacturing Costs, Employment and Economic Effects from Maryland’s Climate Action Plan

In their analyses, the CIER researchers, along with colleagues from Towson University’s Regional Economic Studies Institute and Johns Hopkins University Professor Benjamin F. Hobbs, analyzed the impact resulting from implementation of the following climate remediation programs, including:

SPECIFIC FINDINGS

Manufacturing Economic Impact
2009 Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act (GGRA) requires that cuts in emissions may not cause a significant increase in costs to the manufacturing sector.

Finding: No significant increase in capital or energy costs for the manufacturing sector. Large, electricity-intensive industries, such as chemical plants, will see the greatest energy cost increases – between 1 and 2 percent. Small, less energy-intensive industries, such as printing, could see cost savings as a result of participation in energy conservation programs, such as EmPower Maryland.

Jobs
GGRA says greenhouse gas reduction requirements may not cause reductions in existing manufacturing jobs.

Finding: “Job losses in the manufacturing sector attributable to select CAP policies will be minimal and may not occur at all,” says the economic report. It notes that Maryland’s manufacturing sector has lost jobs since the 1970s, a trend expected to continue with or without the CAP.

Green Jobs
GGRA requires reduction measures to produce a net increase in jobs in Maryland, and encourage new employment opportunities in the State related to energy conservation, alternative energy supply, and greenhouse gas emissions reduction technologies – so called “green jobs.”

Finding: New jobs in each of these categories are expected to grow. Currently, green jobs make up about 3 percent of the state’s workforce. Green job opportunities will be available to those who enhance or modify existing skills.

Electric Reliability
GGRA requires the Maryland Department of the Environment to “ensure the plan does not decrease the likelihood of reliable and affordable electrical service and statewide fuel supply.”

The researchers define “electric reliability” as having adequate amounts of electricity to meet peak summer demand plus a safety margin. These needs can be met by either in-state generation capacity, power importation or by managing demand. Reliability does NOT pertain to disruptions in electricity service caused, for example, by downed wires from fallen trees and branches.

Finding: “We find electricity reliability in Maryland…will improve with the implementation of specific mitigation policies originally identified in the 2008 Climate Action Plan,” the report concludes. “Despite uncertainties in future electricity transmission in Maryland, electricity reliability in the state will be improved with the addition of the three climate mitigation policies.”

By the end of the decade, Maryland will have to import electricity because of the retirement of old generating plants, the researchers explain. Planned projects, such as the Mid-Atlantic Power-Pathway, will help satisfy the state’s needs, if brought on line by 2015. Climate Action planning can improve this picture due to conservation measures that will reduce peak-demand, the researchers say. Increases from renewable sources such as offshore wind will help too.

MEDIA CONTACTS

Matthias Ruth
CIER Director, Principal Investigator
(202) 701-6484 (cell)
mruth1@umd.edu

Sean Williamson
CIER Researcher, Co-Investigator
301-405-9436
srw46@umd.edu

Neil Tickner
UMD Public Affairs
301-405-4622
ntickner@umd.edu

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80 Responses to Maryland, quite possibly even more la-la land than California

  1. Bob Diaz says:

    The people in England saw their energy costs go up as a result of all the “green efforts”. Why should the USA be any different?

  2. Gator says:

    “While California has committed economic suicide with their ridiculous carbon trading plan…”

    Freudian slip?

  3. The USA is waaaAAaay different – for instance, here we use “Magical Mann Numbers” to prove our case, numbers invented from specious sources used creatively to “hockey stick” all estimates in the direction of positive or non-frightening results… Go Team USA!

  4. Bloke down the pub says:

    We shall see how long it takes for them to be disillusioned.

  5. timg56 says:

    Makes me a bit embarrased to have grown up in Maryland and have graduated from U of M.

    But then I remember that Maryland has been in competion with Massachusetts for most liberal state for decades.

  6. harrywr2 says:

    Ohh well…they’ll play pretend for 2 or 3 years. What’s a few billion on windmills between friends.

  7. vboring says:

    The reliability claims are nonsense. Either that or the cost claims are. Or both.

    The electric grid relies on the rotational inertia of controllable spinning machines to maintain frequency. Grid tied solar and wind plants don’t provide this rotational inertia.

    This is what caused the San Diego outage a few weeks ago. When the first line tripped, San Diego was relying too much on renewables and was unable to maintain frequency. When the frequency problems got bad enough, the connection to the rest of Ca tripped and San Diego went black.

    It is possible to fix this problem, but all of the solutions are expensive and unpopular: put real generation closer to loads, add storage, or add more transmission lines.

    This is why utilities only install renewable energy when mandated to do so. The externalized costs are prohibitive.

  8. David says:

    You know, I could write a law that said that all white PVC pipe in residences must be replaced with blue PVC pipe and then make an argument that it would create jobs. Doesn’t mean it’s a good idea though.

  9. geography lady says:

    This has been going on for some time. We have the most liberal of politicians in the country. The Governor is pressing “Smart Growth” so that there doesn’t have to be any new infrastructure such as roads, utilities. He has planned for his office to do the planning (zoning) for the entire state (the locals be damned). This will help him to have everyone live in denser cities (heat islands) that will be self-sustaining. He is building a very large array of solar panels at a college in the western part of the state for green energy. He is planning to build a massive wind turbine farm off shore of Ocean City. Meanwhile he promotes “smart cars” in all electric cars.
    I will add not all college professors/teachers/lecturers agree with this policy.
    Touched on a hot button, sorry…

  10. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Note: Virtually everything after the “Neil Tickner” contact info is in an un-displayable font on my Linux box.

    Checking against the Character Map, they’re in the “Common” script set, “backspace” and “acknowledge” characters are in there. I’d wager they were control characters for an output device.

    What are you seeing on your end?

  11. sean2829 says:

    As a Maryland resident who has watched the political career of our Governor, Martin O’Malley, you have to understand he has presidential ambitions, probably for about the 2016 to 2020 time frame. On the state level, we are essentially a one party state althoug there are a couple of Republican congressional districts. He is subjecting the state to all sorts of Gerrymandering to try and pick up one more Democratic house rep in Congress. He is head of the Democratic Governors Association and he is primming himself for national office by taking positions that make deep pocketed liberal donors happy. So he’s getting his green cred together. We’ve been in RGGI for quite a while and fortunately the allowances are so large the price for carbon emissions is only $1.87 a ton, the minimum. We have a “flush tax” for people with septic systems that he is looking at tripling. He’s taxed the rich by passing a millionaires tax that have resulted in revenues from the wealthy drop substantially as they moved their permanent residences to their second homes in other states. Since that didn’t work, they had to raid the transportation trust fund and put the money in the general fund and has raised all the states tolls by 50% with more to come two years hence. But that’s not enough, he is looking at increasing gasoline taxes by $0.15 per gallon and he wants to do this three times over the next few years because he’s got the replenish the transportation trust fund he raided. This is a beatiful state that has been spared the worst of the recession because of all the Federal governement jobs but suspect the next three years are going to be very painful for average citizens because of our governors political ambitions.

  12. Philip Bradley says:

    I’ve just heard from someone who works on it (and I won’t be more precise than that because someone’s job is involved) that one of the largest wind farms in Western Australia has been out of commission for the last month because mice chewed through the electronics cabling.

  13. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Re previous post:
    Yup, that stuff is gone now. Thanks.

  14. DirkH says:

    Is the NSA back to mechanical computers?

  15. Mike says:

    I work in the energy business in Alberta and am very familiar with the requirements for balancing eleictricity grids. Everything in the nonsense they call “Findings” is false. It gets tiresome trying to argue rationally with these true believers. At some point in the not too distant future their unicorn powered electricity generaton and balancing schemes are going to cause real harm and death. I truly hope these people are held entirely accountable when the inevitable happens.

  16. sean2829 says:

    One other thing I forgot to mention, Maryland with the Chesapeake bay is one of the best states for sailing and most of my friends who sail, do it primarily in the spring and the fall. In the summertime (when electricity demand is highest) the weather is hot, sticky and the wind is still. Wind power will be just like our millionaires, they vanish when the state needs them most.

  17. Steve Schuman says:

    Center for Integrative Environmental Research, now there’s the organization you should ask if you want an impartial answer to environmental questions. What not get solar and wind companies and ask them if alternative power is a good idea. These hucksters are shameless. In Maryland you can buy wind power from a company called Clean Currents. Their pitchwoman gave a presentation at our Quaker Meeting. It was misleaing and full of factual errors. When asked if windpower killed birds, she replied, “occasionally a few are caught up in the blades.” I believe the estimate a few years ago by the U.S. Fish and Wild Life Service was 440,000 a year. I guess everyone has their own definition of what a few means.

  18. Jay Davis says:

    As a Maryland resident I have a few comments to enlighten the readers of WUWT about Maryland. First, the current Governor, Martin O’Malley, who is slightly to the left of Lenin, has ties to the firm proposing a wind farm offshore. Not that that would influence him in pushing for all this legislation. Second, Maryland has been losing private sector jobs, especially manufacturing, steadily for years. I believe in 2010 we led the nation in private sector job loss. The main force driving Maryland’s economy is government and large non-profits, not the private sector. Maryland has a disproportionately large number of people who are public sector workers (Federal, state, local government and public school) or who work for very large liberal leaning non-profits. So because Maryland manufacturing is such a small part of the Maryland economy, any electricity shortages would have a minimal effect on that sector. Third, a proposal for a third nuclear generating plant at Calvert Cliffs has been stalled (probably because of the push for “green” energy). The addition of this plant would, of course, alleviate any electricity shortages, but to the “greens” that means nothing. Fourth, since the leftist democrats control the Maryland government and therefore the University’s purse strings, do not expect any objective study to come out of the University of Maryland with regards to the impact of the “green” energy Climate Plan proposal. To the leftists running this State, what happened when similar plans were implemented in other locations does not matter. All they care about is that their friends will benefit financially and they will score points with their leftist base.

  19. R. de Haan says:

    I think the dear people of Maryland should try to get rid of Martin O’Malley ASAP and hold the masterminds behind the green energy revolution personally responsible for the consequences.

    This plan has DISASTER written all over it.

    Also read: Agenda 21 in rural Maryland
    http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/41959

  20. Gary Turner says:

    Wouldn’t you expect such silliness from a state bordering Dizzy City. That is what D.C. stands for, isn’t it?

  21. Austin says:

    T Boone Pickens likes Wind because it requires lots of natural gas turbines to balance out wind power’s variability. Natural Gas is Picken’s primary business and he sells a lot of it. Imagine that.

    Texas has a huge amount of generating capacity in other sectors and is working on connecting to the national grid so it can sell it.

  22. marose says:

    “…By the end of the decade, Maryland will have to import electricity because of the retirement of old generating plants, the researchers explain. Planned projects, such as the Mid-Atlantic Power-Pathway, will help satisfy the state’s needs, if brought on line by 2015. Climate Action planning can improve this picture due to conservation measures that will reduce peak-demand, the researchers say. Increases from renewable sources such as offshore wind will help too.”

    (1) Maryland will import electricity because they won’t have enough native generation to cover peak demands. (2) The Mid-Atlantic Power Pathway is a transmission project to accomplish (1), but only if done by 2015. Fat chance, the enviros are lining up to file suit. (3) Which leaves us with BINGO!!!…conservation. For those of you Marylanders let me explain…that’s a fancy three letter word for another three letter word called “rationing”. Oops, I forgot the offshore wind. Yeah, right.

  23. Maryland should then invest in the spinning wheels at http://beaconpower.com/
    Any reason not to?

  24. _Jim says:

    vboring says on November 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    The reliability claims are nonsense. Either that or the cost claims are. Or both.

    The electric grid relies on the rotational inertia of controllable spinning machines to maintain frequency. Grid tied solar and wind plants don’t provide this rotational inertia.

    This is what caused the San Diego outage a few weeks ago. When the first line tripped, San Diego was relying too much on renewables and was unable to maintain frequency. When the frequency problems got bad enough, the connection to the rest of Ca tripped and San Diego went black.

    Any chance you could share your information channel with us – or is the above conjecture?

    The info I have seen indicates ‘an accident on the North Gila-Hassayampa transmission line in Arizona’ but perhaps there was too little rotational inertia on-line at the time and the grid experienced ‘voltage collapse’

    .

  25. gator69 says:

    “Wouldn’t you expect such silliness from a state bordering Dizzy City. That is what D.C. stands for, isn’t it?”

    And hear I thought it stood for ‘Didactic Criminals’.

  26. Austin says:

    The wind map for Maryland is not very good. I do not even see any Class 5 spots. This is not good at all.

    http://www.windpoweringamerica.gov/images/windmaps/md_80m.jpg

    Compare to TX which is great.

    http://www.windpoweringamerica.gov/images/windmaps/tx_80m.jpg

    BTW, ERCOT will not allow more than 10% from IRR on the grid in TX.

  27. _Jim says:

    Austin says on November 2, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    T Boone Pickens likes Wind because it requires lots of natural gas turbines to balance out wind power’s variability. Natural Gas is Picken’s primary business and he sells a lot of it. Imagine that.

    Texas has a huge amount of generating capacity in other sectors and is working on connecting to the national grid so it can sell it.

    Really!??

    How?

    a) Texas is NOT connected to the rest of the nation, b) there is no ‘national grid’, it’s true about Pickens though …

    Why Texas Has Its Own Power Grid


    The fantasy of a U.S. super-grid

    .

  28. TomRude says:

    Ask Spaniards about green jobs…

  29. Dr A Burns says:

    What is the IRM ?

  30. JamesD says:

    “By the end of the decade, Maryland will have to import electricity because of the retirement of old generating plants, the researchers explain. ”

    Ha ha, what a joke. I guess if you can just import it, you’ll have it. Of course that will cost a lot, AND you have to assume someone has it to sell to you.

  31. ChE says:

    Mike says:
    November 2, 2011 at 3:17 pm
    I work in the energy business in Alberta and am very familiar with the requirements for balancing eleictricity grids. Everything in the nonsense they call “Findings” is false. It gets tiresome trying to argue rationally with these true believers. At some point in the not too distant future their unicorn powered electricity generaton and balancing schemes are going to cause real harm and death. I truly hope these people are held entirely accountable when the inevitable happens.

    Nope. When the grid comes crashing down around them, they’ll say that it’s because of all the old dirty technology that the Republicans installed, and it’s the Republicans’ fault that they didn’t pass stimulus XVII to rebuild the infrastructure with modern smart green tech.

    As they freeze in the dark.

  32. Gail Combs says:

    Gary Turner says:
    November 2, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    Wouldn’t you expect such silliness from a state bordering Dizzy City. That is what D.C. stands for, isn’t it?
    _________________________________
    And here I thought it was District of Criminals.

    I say GO FOR IT Maryland. Cut ALL electric lines going into the state and make it 100% GREEN Power. OH and make sure every Congress critter and lobbyist pushing GREEN Power has to live there. In other words it is time to put up or shut up!

    If you do live in Maryland perhaps it is time to think of moving? I am So glad I escaped from MA 16 years ago. Now I wish there was a country I could go to to escape the insanity.

  33. SOYLENT GREEN says:

    “the CAP will become an indistinguishable part of a larger and longer-term trend of declining manufacturing employment in the state.”
    That is stunning.

    Translation–“We’re covered when it kills jobs.”
    Only an ivory-tower academic could say something that obtuse.

  34. Curiousgeorge says:

    I’m sure the state could save many megawatts if they just outlawed those plugin air freshener things. And they’d get used to the natural smells eventually. :)

  35. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    DirkH said on November 2, 2011 at 3:16 pm:

    Is the NSA back to mechanical computers?

    There are times when I wonder if “secure” brief communications could be done over ancient terminals using proprietary character sets with 101 to 300 baud acoustically-coupled analog modems, or with emulators of them, simply because the tech is so obsolete that no one would expect it.

  36. ew_3 says:

    If we keep going the way we are, we are going to have a nation of states that produce power and states that need power.

    This is a recipe for disaster as a nation.

  37. higley7 says:

    So, they expect manufacturing to leave, as it has been, probably mostly due to high taxes, and think the effect of CAP will blend in with this, so it’ll be okay.

    Do they have any clue that green jobs are mostly maintenance and repair? They are not jobs that anybody who want s to have a career other than being a glorified janitor/repairman. Solar panels need to be cleaned daily and the wind generators need care and cleaning virtually every day, depending on the season. Bugs and ice and even a film of dirt can impair a wind turbine blade.

    They talk about job opportunities as if there are known developments. When we build a real power plant we know exactly what jobs it will create. As wind and solar suck, as well as suck money, they are blowing smoke up the public butt with the jobs fantasies.

  38. Dave Wendt says:

    Sounds like they have the perfect plan. They are exactly on the glide path to that point in time where we all work for the government providing government services to each other, of more accurately monitoring and hectoring our fellow citizens to insure compliance with the Kafka x10*22 rules and regs of the Library of Congress sized Federal Registry. Although they may have to get a bit more enthusiast with the offshore wind farms. All that porn surfing on the Internet sucks up a lotta juice.

  39. Frizzy says:

    Gail Combs says:
    November 2, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    “If you do live in Maryland perhaps it is time to think of moving? I am So glad I escaped from MA 16 years ago.”

    Uhhhhhm, what does your escaping from Massachusetts(MA) have to do with Maryland(MD)?

  40. crosspatch says:

    Maryland is way different from California. Maryland can have hurricanes which could possibly take out a large number of turbines over a wide area, even blizzards there in winter can have hurricane force winds. Also, particularly in the summer, Maryland can have a week or more of very hot, humid, sticky weather without so much as a breath of breeze. Unless they are planning on installing these at Ocean City (good luck with that), they are likely to get into a situation where the times they need electricity most will be the times when they have the least wind. Same goes for cold winter nights when the air is still.

  41. RACookPE1978 says:

    Frizzy says:
    November 2, 2011 at 9:57 pm

    Gail Combs says:
    November 2, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    “If you do live in Maryland perhaps it is time to think of moving? I am So glad I escaped from MA 16 years ago.”

    Uhhhhhm, what does your escaping from Massachusetts(MA) have to do with Maryland(MD)?

    From her previous remarks, you would realize that (1) MA is much more liberal (and much more poorly run by the liberal elites) than MD .. and (2) She is very happy to have left MA when she did.

    Your warning, then, is that you should NOT make her mistake and stay in MD.

  42. Austin says:

    Jim said:

    “a) Texas is NOT connected to the rest of the nation, b) there is no ‘national grid’, it’s true about Pickens though …”

    Yes, Texas is connected to the Eastern and Mexican grids.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Texas_Interconnection

    And a new interconnect is planned to connect TX, Western, and Eastern.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tres_Amigas_SuperStation

    Texas has around 80,000 MW of capacity now and another 30,000 is on the books, Texas has the lowest wholesale electricity prices of any deregulated market. Large consumers of electricity pay very low rates. This makes it very attractive for data centers and other large users of electricity.

    In comparison, California has around 55,000 MW.

  43. Jack says:

    You think Maryland is bad, try the UK.

    Shipping should turn to sail to cut carbon. The Committee on Climate Change has called on the shipping industry to turn to wind power to cut the country’s carbon emissions.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthnews/8864854/Shipping-should-turn-to-sail-to-cut-carbon.html

    It is only a matter of time before the UK converts it’s naval fleet to sails.

  44. Billy Liar says:

    Andres Valencia says:
    November 2, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Maryland should then invest in the spinning wheels at http://beaconpower.com/
    Any reason not to?

    It went into Chapter 11 a few days before your post?

    …After careful consideration of all available alternatives, our Board of Directors determined that filing for Chapter 11 on October 30, 2011, was a necessary and prudent step…

  45. Shevva says:

    Do you think digging holes then filling them in again is a green job because you give me enough subsidy and I’ll cut the US unemployment figure like you wouldn’t believe.

    And the only new skill you need to learn is how to use a shovel.

    ‘Green job opportunities will be available to those who enhance or modify existing skills.’

  46. Pull My Finger says:

    We lived in Maryland during the reign of William Donald Sheaffer, Lord of Baltimore, Sovereign of Mary’s Land, and states don’t come too much more liberal. It’s an interesting alliance, much like DC, of the tradional blue-collar, poverty Democratic voters teaming up with the Liberal Egghead Federal Gov’t workers and educators Progressives to dominate the state. Lovely state though, even though the summers, as noted, are brutal. The Eastern Shore of the Cheasapeke is about as bucolic as they come these days as long as you stay out of the rat hole that is Salisbury.

  47. Bill Marsh says:

    Bob Diaz says:
    November 2, 2011 at 2:07 pm

    The people in England saw their energy costs go up as a result of all the “green efforts”. Why should the USA be any different?

    ==================

    Because we adhere to our own economic ‘1984’ doublespeak economics. What they will do if jobs are lost and the economy turns south in Maryland is ‘reclassify’ the jobs into a different economic category and proclaim, “See, we told you that we wouldn’t lose jobs because of the ‘Green’ policies and we didn’t. We lost them for different reasons, so its all good. Besides, we’ve been losing these jobs since 1970 so it isn’t our fault.

  48. Gail Combs says:

    Frizzy says:
    November 2, 2011 at 9:57 pm

    Gail Combs says:
    November 2, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    “If you do live in Maryland perhaps it is time to think of moving? I am So glad I escaped from MA 16 years ago.”

    Uhhhhhm, what does your escaping from Massachusetts(MA) have to do with Maryland(MD)?
    ________________________________
    Massachusetts is another liberal state with idiotic GREEN laws. We gave up in disgust and moved when they passed two laws making it illegal to put store bought vegetable peelings in your compost heap and another law saying no ground water for ten feet below your septic system. The last law saw 80 to 90 percent of the homes that came up for sale condemned. Those are just two of the “Green Laws” At the time we left they were looking at making 3/4 of the state the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge the original draft included farmers having a written plan approved by the state for the crops grown, trees you cut down and even every fence post you put in!

    This purposed law in Maryland is another idiotic GREEN law. You vote against it by leaving if you can not stop it from passing. If you are a liberal then fine stay there and reap what you sow.

  49. LarryD says:

    Well, when reality rears its ugly head, CEIRs’ credibility should be completely destroyed.

    “Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other.” (anon. I believe)

    Maybe we should build a new Yankee Clipper or two, and see if UK shipping will bite. :-)

  50. Gail Combs says:

    Jack says:
    November 3, 2011 at 3:13 am

    You think Maryland is bad, try the UK.
    Shipping should turn to sail to cut carbon. The Committee on Climate Change has called on the shipping industry to turn to wind power to cut the country’s carbon emissions.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthnews/8864854/Shipping-should-turn-to-sail-to-cut-carbon.html

    It is only a matter of time before the UK converts it’s naval fleet to sails.
    ___________________________________________________
    OH good!

    Now they can impress all those immigrants living on welfare. They should probably consider chaining them to rowing benches to provide power when there is no wind too. Little kids can be used on tread mills for providing electric power for instrumentation like radar and communications….

    Maybe we can get Delingpole at the telegraph to write up the proposal?? Call it the “Modest Proposal” perhaps?

  51. Gail Combs says:

    Shevva says:
    November 3, 2011 at 4:40 am

    Do you think digging holes then filling them in again is a green job because you give me enough subsidy and I’ll cut the US unemployment figure like you wouldn’t believe….
    __________________________________
    If you are going to that, I have some fence post holes I have to dig this winter in very rocky soil….

    Might as well get some REAL PRODUCTIVITY out of the make-work (snicker)

  52. Pamela Gray says:

    Tall metal structures, sitting hapazardly in rows, blades frozen in place, are the Stonehenges of the future. Anybody want to bet that archeologists will assign some kind of god-cult to the structures?

  53. beng says:

    As a MD resident, I can confirm that neo-Marxists have extended tendrils from Wash DC outward to infect the entire state. Much or most of the state is now employed/controlled by these people, including our children’s education.

    Just like a legalized mafia syndicate complete with extortion, payoffs, money laundering, strong-arming, etc.

  54. suyts says:

    lol, it won’t impact jobs if they’re not expecting any growth……. Notice the barely more than 10% increase in peak demand in ten years. That doesn’t even keep up with population increase much less job growth. Economies have to grow at about 2% just to break even. Electricity use is a proxy for general economic activity.

    So, yes, if Maryland is looking forward to further impoverishment of its populace, then the whirly gigs, pinwheels and sun catchers shouldn’t impact their prospects.

  55. suyts says:

    Pamela Gray says:
    November 3, 2011 at 7:00 am

    Tall metal structures, sitting hapazardly in rows, blades frozen in place, are the Stonehenges of the future. Anybody want to bet that archeologists will assign some kind of god-cult to the structures?
    ========================================================
    lol, that would be the obvious conclusion. In that the functionality of such gizmos would only serve a ceremonious function.

  56. jamadan says:

    I can tell you tht BGE was real popular this past summer for the way they rationed energy duringthe early summer heat wave. Customers who volunteered for the program that allowed BGE to cycle off their A/C during peak energy usage discovered were shocked and irate after BGE turned off the A/C for 12 hours at a time during the hottest weekend of the year with temps exceeding 100 degrees. They were under the false impression that their A/C would be cycled on and off every 15 minutes to an hour thinking they could tolerate the stuffiness for that period of time in exchange for a $300 credit per year. Many dropped the program after that first weekend.

    Martin O’Malley is definitely in the Obama wing of politics; an idealist who makes dramatic changes consequences be damned. I have no idea how a study can conclude that green energy will produce lots of jobs yet not increase costs. Whose paying for those new jobs? Consumers, because there’s no enough manufacturing jobs left to impact.

  57. Ryan says:

    Is there a School of Public Policy at any university in the country which isn’t a mennace to society?

  58. Terry W says:

    “…By the end of the decade, Maryland will have to import electricity because of the retirement of old generating plants, the researchers explain. Planned projects, such as the Mid-Atlantic Power-Pathway, will help satisfy the state’s needs, if brought on line by 2015. Climate Action planning can improve this picture due to conservation measures that will reduce peak-demand, the researchers say. Increases from renewable sources such as offshore wind will help too.”

    Yet the study says in the electrical link:

    1) “Maryland lacks sufficient in-state generation resources to meet summer peak demand ..”

    and

    2) “Maryland is a net importer of electricity with imports amounting to as much as 30% of its electrical needs during 2002 – 2007..”

    It also talks of relying on increasing its import capability but one of those projects (PATH) was suspended this last February.

    Someone’s not looking at the big picture here.

  59. Larry Fields says:

    vboring says:
    November 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm
    “The electric grid relies on the rotational inertia of controllable spinning machines to maintain frequency. Grid tied solar and wind plants don’t provide this rotational inertia.
    This is what caused the San Diego outage a few weeks ago. When the first line tripped, San Diego was relying too much on renewables and was unable to maintain frequency. When the frequency problems got bad enough, the connection to the rest of Ca tripped and San Diego went black.”

    I’m not as current on this stuff as I should be, and was unaware of the interesting fact about the SD outage that you mentioned. Do you have a link for that?

  60. Wayne Delbeke says:

    So imagine Maryland with lots of windmills and lots of snow and ice like this past weekend and thing about turbines shedding blades in the ice.

    Maryland had 29,000 power outages due to the recent storm. Imagine what that number would be if they relied on wind farms?

    http://www.foxnews.com/weather/2011/10/30/power-outages-could-last-for-days-after-deadly-snowstorm-hits-northeast/

  61. Gary Pearse says:

    School of public policy professor? Why not School of Engineering?

  62. Mark Buehner says:

    Loooook, they have a foolproof plan to stop generating dirty electricity in Maryland: ***Hand waving, hand waving, ill advised conservation schemes that wont take, assumption of no growth, hand waving, hand waving*** buy electricity from out of state.

    Are these guys sharp or what? If we could just extend this plan to the rest of the world, oh wait…

  63. Dan in California says:

    I live and work where I can look out the window and see hundreds of wind turbines. In my experience, especially in the summer, the wind almost never blows when power is most needed. Fall and winter, when peak demand is lower, there is better correlation between wind speed and power usage. But don’t take my word for it, be skeptical and look at the link (below) to California grid information. In summertime, the wind power curve is almost exactly opposite the demand curve.

    http://www2.caiso.com/outlook/SystemStatus.html

  64. Dan in California says:

    As I type this, California’s wind power production is more than 3% of demand (877 MW of 27,600 MW). Take *that* Maryland!

  65. Dave Springer says:

    “They should ask Texas how wind power works out for them in peak demand times.”

    You just can’t stop yourself even when you know better, can you?

    The February 2nd, 2011 rolling blackout was caused by record cold temperatures that froze and burst water pipes at two coal powered electric plants causing them to shut down. These plants supplied power to booster pumps for natural gas pipelines. The reduced pressure in the natural gas pipelines caused 11 natural gas plants to reduce output. Altogether a whopping 7,000 megawatt shortfall. That state has 9,000 megawatts of wind power which kept on producing at some 3,000 megawatts all the way through the period.

    The blame, as usual for blackouts, was severe weather causing equipment failures. If you know any of the weather forecasters who missed those record low temperatures by so much that night send them some Tarot cards and suggest testing to see if that helps. It sure can’t hurt.

    If you’re interested in actual data instead of continually and mistakenly blaming the boogeyman hobbyhorse scapegoat-of-choice wind turbines you might try some real data for a change regarding power outtages by region, state, duration, number affected, and cause. Try the link below. Very informative.

    http://powerquality.eaton.com/blackouttracker/default.asp

    Or not. It doesn’t seem like you really want any facts to get in the way of your rants on this particular topic.

    I’m sorry you made the gross miscalculation of remaining a resident in Californicate but it’s your choice. I bailed out 20 years ago and have lived in Texas ever since. Haven’t regretted it for a minute despite the fact that we have 3 times the wind generating capacity of California now and lead the nation in it with some 25% of the nation’s total nameplate capacity. The government that Californians keep reelecting is incapable of managing conventional electricity to say nothing of alternative sources which require much better planning. Remember when Enron gamed the dummies in Sacremento in 2000/2001 causing the price of electricity to go up by 2000%, bankrupting PG&E because the law wouldn’t allow them to pass on the losses, and almost bankrupting Southern California Edison too? Boy was I laughing – Enron was based in Houston, Texas.

    Glad I wasn’t a Enron stockholder though. Enron gamed Wall Street too. They don’t call those good old boys “The Smartest Guys in the Room” for nothing.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enron:_The_Smartest_Guys_in_the_Room

    In case you haven’t been following along:

    Fastow gets out of the clink next month after serving 4 years of a ten year sentence in a low security prison and gave up $23M in ill-gotten booty that he didn’t manage to hide. Skilling is cooling his heels in federal prison in Colorado. The Supreme Court just vacated (nullified) most of the charges that Skilling was convicted of and sent the remainder back to lower court so he’ll probably be getting out with “time served” any day now too. Ken Lay died of a heart attack at age 66 while skiing in Colorado, three months before his sentencing.

  66. Eric (skeptic) says:

    So far not mentioned is that Maryland already has the worst electric grid reliability in the region, maybe in the country. The snowstorm last weekend barely grazed them with an inch or two and they still lost 29k The problem is they are too socialist to allow the power company to raise rates to fix the problem because they are afraid they might make a little extra profit on the deal. Meanwhile the power company spends its money advertising on the radio about how hard they are trying. Like green power, Maryland’s electricity is all talk and no substance.

  67. Dave Springer says:

    Eric (skeptic) says:
    November 3, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    “So far not mentioned is that Maryland already has the worst electric grid reliability in the region, maybe in the country. The snowstorm last weekend barely grazed them with an inch or two and they still lost 29k The problem is they are too socialist to allow the power company to raise rates to fix the problem because they are afraid they might make a little extra profit on the deal. Meanwhile the power company spends its money advertising on the radio about how hard they are trying. Like green power, Maryland’s electricity is all talk and no substance.”

    It didn’t look particularly different from anywhere else.

    http://powerquality.eaton.com/blackouttracker/default.asp

    They did have three power outages caused by squirrels this fall though and one cause by copper thieves which both stood out. Otherwise it looks like the usual bag of winds and lightning and ice storms and falling tree branches and equipment failures and human error. Maybe more planned outages than average.

  68. Dave Springer says:

    fact about the SD outage that you mentioned. Do you have a link for that?

    Wayne Delbeke says:
    November 3, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    “So imagine Maryland with lots of windmills and lots of snow and ice like this past weekend and thing about turbines shedding blades in the ice.”

    The only place those turbines will shed blades due to ice IS in your imagination. They have deicing systems on the turbine blades. Flying shards of ice when the deicers kick on might be a problem though. Make the best of it by putting targets on the ground and get betting pools going around which targets get beaned by turbine ice shed first. Something different to put a few bucks down on in the local watering hole instead of sports.

  69. Brian H says:

    More DS drivel.
    The Tx outage wasn’t caused by windmills, but they provided power only during that night, when it wasn’t needed. Next morning, when the state fired up, they were MIA because the wind didn’t blow.
    Tits on a bull.

  70. Doug Badgero says:

    It is economically illiterate to argue that increasing the cost of a product without increasing the economic utility of that product can increase macro-economic growth.

  71. Dave Springer says:

    Larry Fields says:
    November 3, 2011 at 10:21 am

    vboring says:
    November 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm
    “The electric grid relies on the rotational inertia of controllable spinning machines to maintain frequency. Grid tied solar and wind plants don’t provide this rotational inertia.
    This is what caused the San Diego outage a few weeks ago. When the first line tripped, San Diego was relying too much on renewables and was unable to maintain frequency. When the frequency problems got bad enough, the connection to the rest of Ca tripped and San Diego went black.”

    I’m not as current on this stuff as I should be, and was unaware of the interesting fact about the SD outage that you mentioned. Do you have a link for that?
    ———————————————————————————————————————

    A common complaint about wind power is it displaces spinning reserves which can be called upon instantly for frequency regulation and load balancing. This requires better management practices or some system modifications or both or you lose a fraction of a percent of efficiency which ends being a fraction of a percent higher cost for customers since the consumer is the one paying for the cost of generation at the end of the day.

    It’s not that big of a deal to fix it mechanically. You can feed some of your wind power backward into a generator which turns it into a motor and keep your reserve spinning without using gas or coal for the motive power. This can be a generator that is normally shaft-powered by a coal or gas heated steam turbine. Or use the wind power as a secondary heat source for the boiler on your spinning reserve saving the gas that would otherwise be used to keep the boiler pressure at operating level. Typically about 2% of peak demand is kept in reserve so if you take 2% of your wind power and route it into inertial spinning reserve there’s no need to reduce your coal or gas spinning reserve. There are other tricks that are also done like draw excess available power off the grid and use it to pump water uphill into a reservoir that’s already got hydro generators somewhere downstream. Hydro power is very fast response, great for load following and frequency regulation. All these same problems occur with nuclear power which doesn’t respond very quickly to load changes as there’s all kinds of chemistry changes to diddle with, neutron poisoning, and so forth as control rods go in and out to regulate reaction rate, nukes takes weeks to start and stop, and are thus used almost exclusively used for baseload power at full rated output. Another problem with nukes is they are rather expensive compared to gas & coal and you really want base power coming from your least expensive source.

    There are a great many tradeoffs to consider and most people, like the thorium cheerleaders that frequent (and own/adminstrate) this blog, or the electric car fruitloops who troll it, don’t have a clue about any of these tradeoffs.

  72. Dave Springer says:

    And of course the more geographically spread out your wind generation becomes the more even becomes the output. Wind gusts at 20mph over average wind speed take twenty minutes to move across a 20 mile wide turbine field. Day and night are offset by 3 hours between right and left coasts, and so forth. I don’t think we have much in the way of connections between eastern and western grids but they’re at least in being built out as we speak. So once you get a lot of wind generation spread out across an area as big as the United States and a turbine in Seattle that slows down can be offset by one in Florida that sped up at the same time you get a much more predictable, constant output from the whole enchilada. 20% of total electrical demand eventually met by wind power doesn’t appear to me to be overly optimistic and the turbines become more cost effective due to manufacturing improvements, economy of scale, and just basically getting over the learning curve. Every new industry goes through growing pains.

  73. derek says:

    independent studies? that should be humorous.

  74. Claude Harvey says:

    I suppose everyone has noticed that AGW and “Tooth Fairy Economic” theories are connected at the hip.

  75. david says:

    David Springer
    “So once you get a lot of wind generation spread out across an area as big as the United States and a turbine in Seattle that slows down can be offset by one in Florida that sped up at the same time you get a much more predictable, constant output from the whole enchilada.”

    Transmission losses. Don’t forget transmission losses. That is why electricity is regional.
    Never mind that the Pacific Northwest is exclusively 90%+ on hydro.

  76. Jay Davis says:

    David Springer, any electricity production that is subject to the vagaries of nature is inherently unreliable, no matter how big a geographic area you spread it out over. If a cold wave grips the northern United States, with its attendant low wind speeds and huge drop in electricity production in that geographic area, believe me, the rest of the country cannot even begin to make up the shortfall. Therefore reliable electricity production requires redundant systems. That more than negates any supposed savings wind power would produce.

  77. Ken Harvey says:

    I have found the answer. What is needed is a means of increasing the output of the wind turbine when demand dictates. So I have invented this accelerator. It needs a power source, of course, and this is the clever bit. It is driven by treadle power. Oodles of green jobs, shift work 24/7. Somebody just needs to come up with an idea as to what the treadlers can do with their time when, inconveniently, the wind is howling.

  78. Doug Badgero says:

    A LOT of bad info here:

    Nukes do not take “weeks to start and stop” they take hours. They are baseload plants because their variable operating costs are lower than either coal or nat gas not hydro though. Their levelized capitol cost is high, which only matters when your deciding what to build………it is irrelevant after they are built.

    Assuming that spreading out wind turbines geographic footprint helps levelize their output assumes that the size of the footprint is large enough to approximate independence in the PDF of the winds within that region. This is not a valid assumption within an area that power can economically be transmitted. That is, you can’t credit turbines on the east coast to make up for shortfalls in the Midwest. And the PDFs of the east and the Midwest are not independent functions.

    There is an issue with transient stability with wind turbines and it has little to do with spinning reserve. It is related to a transient upset conditions and the grids ability to maintain stability following the upset……..such as a short on a transmission line. The low mechanical inertia generators make it more likely to result in a diverging oscillation.

  79. Charlie Foxtrot says:

    Idaho recently completed an energy study. The most surprising thing they pointed out was that wind power is essentially worthless at the time of year the power is needed the most, mid summer. Summer here is still and hot for the most part, so they figure wind turbines are only good for 5% of nameplate capacity. I blows like crazy for 9 months, but not when the most power is needed.
    I tried to wade through the Maryland document, but lost interest. It appears that they plan to chase most manufacturing out of the state, and force everyone still there to reduce their energy consumption. I guess they missed the connection between plentiful low cost reliable energy, and prosperity.

  80. Brian H says:

    Charlie F;
    The didn’t miss it. It’s the “Power Penury Project”. Full (or maybe ¼) steam ahead!

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