Crash boom bang

The smart money is starting to abandon the CO2 vessel

Guest essay by Fred F. Mueller

The IPCC and its supporters in the media, in NGO’s and in governments have taken advantage of the issuing of the newly released 5th Assessment Report (AR 5) to mount an all-out PR offensive promoting their view of CO2-induced doom for humanity using any and all news channels and tabloids as pitchmen. Despite growing distrust in the general public, few people have the mettle to stand their ground against such a massive persuasiveness. How can an average citizen acquire the steadfastness to brush off this veil of lies? The answer is simple: follow the money trail.

When confronted with overwhelming “scientific evidence”, one should keep in mind the basic question any criminal investigator learns to ask whenever being confronted with a puzzling case: who is benefitting? In the case of “climate change science”, the answer is simple, since in the past decades a trillion-dollar-business has sprung up providing all sorts of equipment and services intended to lower what is dubbed our “CO2 footprint”. Whole sectors such as solar and wind energy farms have grown like mushrooms promising to supply our nations with so-called clean and green energy.

These sectors have one common mark distinguishing them from normal business activities. They do not provide us with a better or a cheaper product, one that we would want to buy, but rely on subsidies guaranteed by legal frameworks instead. During the past 20 years, they have grown from modest to big to supersized and now feature the proportions of a cuckoo hatchling in the nest of a tiny songbird. This powerful business sector has all the money and resources to pay for adequate services in the world of science. And modern science is by no means impartial. Scientific institutions are business units with a well-developed service orientation that will of course avoid anything that might displease their sponsors. The same applies of course for state-run agencies such as NASA or NOAA, who are supervised and alimented by political bodies packed with green-minded politicians. So forget about any claims of “pure” science, ignore colorful screenshots and simply sniff for the smell of money – and you’ll be on the right trail.

 

Would the business plan please stand up?

As in the case of any economic bubble, the “climate saving” industries have been building up on promises of returns that would be delivered sometime in the future, in the form of reduced CO2 emissions and lower energy costs due to reductions in fossil fuel consumptions. But unfortunately, it looks like nobody bothered to deliver a sound cost or return on investment calculation: the proponents of the green energy revolution simply ignited a frenzy resulting in the chaotic buildup of all sorts of “green energy” plants in parallel to existing power supplies, without any risks for investors thanks to legal frameworks guaranteeing ample monetary returns for lengthy time periods. In Europe and more particularly in Germany, where the already strong green ideology has been overtaken by a political leader raised in a communist country, this policy has been exaggerated to a point where the financial tolerance limits even of a sound economy start to be transgressed. For a number of reasons, Germany has thus become the nexus of a host of developments that will ultimately result in the rupture of the “green energy and climate rescue by CO2 reduction” bubble.

The German money sink

Germany currently has committed itself to reduce its CO2 emissions by achieving an 80 % share of “renewable” power generation by 2050 while at the same time shutting down its nuclear power plants, which had been contributing 20-30 % of its power supply. Currently, “renewables” including biomass and water contribute about 22 % to Germany’s power production, with the share of wind and solar reaching roughly half of this figure. But for this rather modest achievement, the German populace has been served with a commitment to a € 370.- billion (US-$ 500.- billion) bill, payable over the next 20 years, picture 1. As a consequence, the average German household will have to pay north of € 0.30 (US-$ 0.40) per kWh by 2014. While the majority of the population is up to now indulgently accepting this rip-off, the industry is increasingly feeling disadvantaged in comparison to international competitors benefitting from substantially lower power supply tariffs. But the real challenge for Germany lies in the fact that in order to reach its 80 % “renewable” objective, the sum already spent would have to be more than quadrupled to more than € 2 trillion (US-$ 2.7 trillion). Even for Germany’s rather robust economy, such a sum represents a burden that might well bring down even this sturdy horse.

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Picture 1. The German population is burdened with an ever-growing financial commitment based on 20-year offtake obligations at guaranteed prices

No returns: Neither with respect to power supply…

Given these enormous expenditures, one would normally expect to see some kind of return by the prospect of an adequately ample supply of “clean” electric power able to supplant a certain portion of the “dirty” energy produced by burning coal or gas and a corresponding amount of fossil fired production capacity rendered obsolete. But this is not the case, due to the fact that wind and sun are following their own rules. In the case of Germany, where the minimum (nighttime) power supply requirement is around 30000-40000 MW and the max grid load on winter working days can reach 85000 MW, a total of 66000 MW of nominal wind and solar power generation capacity has already been connected to the grid. Nevertheless, there are sometimes extended periods of time when neither the sun nor the wind are inclined to fulfill their duties, as documented by picture 2 showing the situation on Aug. 22nd, 2013. In the time between 05.00 and 07.00 o’clock in the morning of that day, the total power provided by both sources barely transgressed 500 MW, less than the output of a single gas-fired power plant. If one compares this to the needs of an highly industrialized nation with 80 million inhabitants, it would probably not even have sufficed to power the standby lights of the country’s electronic devices. In other words, virtually the complete fleet of German conventional power stations has to remain in standby mode in order to secure the grid supply in case the “renewables” suddenly decide they deserve a more or less prolonged rest. And in the case of coal-fired plants, the term “standby” means they must continuously burn fuel to maintain a certain minimum level of boiler pressure and temperature in order to be able to react quickly to changes in demand.

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Picture 2. Production of electric power from wind and photovoltaic plants in Germany on Aug. 22nd, 2013. In the early morning hours, the total fell below 600 MW, not even enough to keep the nation’s standby lamps glowing (Data source: transparency.eex.com)

nor to CO2 reduction

To make things even worse, the decision of the German government to shut down nearly half of the country’s nuclear power generation plants in the wake of the Fukushima disaster has deprived the country of a major carbon-free power generating source. The result is that between 2000 and 2012, despite enormous expenditures in wind and solar generating capacities, the quantity of CO2 emitted from power generating sources has not been reduced at all, picture 3. And that situation will further deteriorate when by 2022, a further 16-17 % of the current power generating capacity still supplied by nuclear plants will be shuttered as scheduled. Worse still, before even taking into consideration any cost aspects, one must take into account the fact that a substantial portion of this lost capacity cannot be replaced by wind or solar power for technical reasons, since further increasing their share would simply jeopardize the stability of the grid. A projection of the power production breakdown by CO2 sources reveals that by 2022, when the last German nuclear power plant will be shuttered, the country will have spent at least around US-$ 1 trillion in order to achieve a 10 % increase in CO2 emissions linked to power generation. Not quite what was promised…

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Picture 3. Even after 12 years of massive funding of „renewable“ power production, the CO2 output from German power stations shows no decline (figures in Mio. t CO2/ year)

The smart money starts to leave ship

This scenario implies some very interesting consequences. First of all, the CO2 reduction policy currently pursued by our political leaders is doomed to fail, albeit one cannot predict when and how exactly, but fail it must. Producing such mediocre results for so much money thrown at the CO2-“problem” will ultimately be met with growing resistance since the financing of other vital parts of society will be negatively affected. And there is one natural force the doomsday prophets seem to completely underestimate: the explosive reaction of masses of people that feel they have been let down by their leaders. To understand this lesson, one might just have a look at the French Bastille or the many empty palaces in Austria, Russia, Italy, Greece and so on.

While the IPCC and a number of key political figures such as Merkel and Obama are stubbornly staying the course, the smart money has already started to react. More and more lifeboats can be seen leaving the ship. The giant Desertec project aiming at producing solar energy for Europe in the Sahara desert is virtually dead in the sand. Spain is severely cutting back on its “renewable” subsidies. The German solar sector is in free fall, with big players such as Siemens and Bosch closing shop at a loss. Wind energy seems to be more robust, but even the market leader, Danish company Vestas, is experiencing severe headwinds. And last but not least, some governments such as those of Czechia and Australia prove their common sense by throwing useless “renewable” policies over board. As soon as this trend will have gained enough momentum, one might expect to see a new generation of scientists emerge producing nice colorful computer charts proving beyond doubt that CO2 is beneficial for plant growth and thus for feeding our populations.

 

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76 thoughts on “Crash boom bang

  1. Renewables can’t work economically as has been shown time and again in Australia and the rest of the world. Stop the subsidies and you stop the projects because they can’t turn a profit without being propped up by governments/’taxpayers/consumers.

  2. “And last but not least, some governments such as those of Czechia and Australia prove their common sense by throwing useless “renewable” policies over board.”

    Unfortunately not so in respect to Australia. We have just elected a government determined to abolish the Carbon Tax, but to have 5% of total energy supplied by ‘renewable’ sources (by 2020) still remains government (and opposition) policy. Why abolish the Carbon Tax? Simple, it was adversely affecting import competing, and exporting, Australian industry – as such a tax is not paid by competitors. It increased domestic power bills by about 10% as all electricity generators, except those using water power, passed on the tax to the consumers. The cost of ‘renewable’ energy is also passed on to consumers, but few people have woken up to that yet. Hopefully they will soon.

    Our government is also wedded to a Direct Action Plan, where industries are to be paid to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide. This has been slammed by the green lobby and by economists, though on any careful reading, targeting the actual emitters would seem to be better than a general tax burden. Still rather pointless, though.

  3. From the UK http://www.taxpayersalliance.com/
    New research: renewable energy subsidies will double to over £5 billion in next five years0

    Renewable energy – such as wind – is only competitive thanks to generous Government subsidies. Those subsidies are paid for by consumers through higher household energy bills.We can reveal that, even based on conservative projections, those subsidies will rise from just under £2 billion this year to over £5 billion by 2018/19.
    Click here to read the full research

    Ministers have claimed that costs will fall over time thanks to greater economies of scale, but the announcement that high subsidies will continue for the foreseeable future suggests that this
    strategy has failed, despite the transfer of risk from investors to consumers.

    Key findings of this research:

    Total support for renewable energy through the main subsidy scheme (the Renewables Obligation and Contracts for Difference) will rise from around £1.99 billion in 2012-13 to over £5.32 billion in 2018-19 as more capacity is added to the network.
    Onshore wind will receive a guaranteed electricity price double the typical wholesale price. Offshore wind will receive triple the typical wholesale price.
    The Government appears likely to miss a critical target to reduce the cost of renewable energy. The target to reduce the cost of offshore wind to £100 /MWh by 2020 will almost certainly be broken as offshore wind will still receive £135 /MWh in 2018-19, falling from £155 /MWh next year (in 2012 prices).
    Renewable energy subsidies have failed to deliver reductions in cost. Government policy was supposed to reduce costs by creating economies of scale and driving technological innovation but renewable energy still requires very similar levels of subsidy despite years of subsidy.
    Despite the level of subsidy, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) has warned that “required investment is at risk” unless higher subsidies for offshore wind are provided.

    Read more at their web site

  4. Thank you for a succinct and detailed analysis of the state of the idiotic greenpower movement.
    As an Australian i urge our new PM to follow through with the resumption of clean power generation from our existing and abundant coal and gas reserves.
    This can then be passed on to industry to improve our manufacturing competitiveness and show the worlrd the truth – rather than the lies and folly of greenpower.at any price.

  5. The big trouble with wind power and solar is that they are designed to operate with energy storage (i.e. a battery) to get you through the lean times. Which works well if you are in the middle of nowhere and you want some basic electrical services…

    On the other hand using wind and solar to essentially replace mains power is never going to work. At the very least you get massive stability problems in supply, combine that with the degree of tech needed to get all this distributed ‘feed-in’ power behaving nicely with all the other feed-in sources and you have a high maintenance, high cost, low reliability power network. You couldn’t create a more sub optional way to provide mains power if you tried!

    The sooner this silliness comes to an end the better for us; and the planet.

  6. Beautifully written – thank you

    This is really connected to the “buy an insurance policy” arguments of the Warmist lobby – it might not be true but we should still insure against it as an insurance policy in case it is true. As the scientific scare becomes discredited these insurance side arguments are being more promoted.

  7. “… it would probably not even have sufficed to power the standby lights of the country’s electronic devices.”

    Why do I hear so many pleas for not leaving any of my appliances on standby here in England? Is that because the gov’t is wary that my sleeping laptop will compete with essential services?

  8. The central question in Australia is will Abbott keep to his to have the sectors actually bid to make contracted promises to actually reduce carbon emissions- then we’ll get no takers these flim-flam industries avoid concrete promises like the plague it will be 5%*0.

  9. I feel certain Abbott knows the truth that is so plain for anyone with a switched on brain to conclude..
    I will be watching with interest as he goes about the business of ignoring the minority manic fringe dwellers and fulfilling his mandate – the voters have had their say – No CO2 tax,, no extra mining tax.

    By all means keep up to date with the technology, but ZERO SUBSIDIES OR TAXES!

  10. Excellent article ! The real crunch will come on a cold winter evening at ~5pm when demand is at its highest, solar energy =zero(it is dark!), and a high pressure system provides no wind over Europe. This already happened in the UK. On December 14th 2012 at 5pm with demand at 56GW the output from the entire fleet of 5000 wind turbines was just 70MW! – see the data here. Since then the UK has closed 2 large coal power stations is downgrading another (DRAX) to burn imported US wood chips and plans more closures.

    Such energy crunch events are certain to happen several days each winter because renewables are randomly intermittent – like the weather. That is why the wind industry and DECC only ever report statistics about installed capacity (10GW in UK) or new record renewable output (12% of demand for 2 days last September). What never gets reported by them is the average power production from wind (4.5%) or more importantly the minimum production from wind (<0.1%). It is the minimum contribution which really impacts on energy security. Even if the UK or Germany spent 10 times more each year in subsidies for wind , doubling our energy costs, the grid would still need 99% backup from fossil fuels to guarantee the lights don't go out !

    Then we hear that energy storage is the solution. However, only Switzerland or Norway have the mountainous regions that would be needed to give anywhere near the pumped storage that would be required. If energy storage was simple it would already have been implemented as we have always built more power stations than needed to provide security of supply.

  11. In my copy of a Sunday Newspaper today, a financial annoucement sums up what is wrong with the renewable energy concept – the investment fund will invest in just built or nearly completed solar farms.

    It predicate 60% of its income will come from Government subsidy!!!

    And we know where Governments get the money from you and me …..

    “MIDAS: New British solar energy fund has chance to shine as Government expects solar to play a growing role in electricity production
    By Joanne Hart Last updated: 5 October 2013
    Foresight Solar Fund is scheduled to float this month. The £200 million flotation is similar to recent wind fund offerings, but solar energy is more predictable and the plants tend to attract less opposition.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/midasextra/article-2445771/New-British-solar-energy-fund-chance-shine-Government-expects-solar-play-growing-role-electricity-production.html#ixzz2gw8vZ926
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook”

  12. The eco-green movement has probably stalled legitimate research in to alternative energy sources by (just a guess) twenty years or more! Sad, isn’t it?

  13. Fred F. Mueller’s well-written post encapsulates all that the Telegraph’s Christopher Booker and James Delingpole have been reporting for years. In case anyone missed it, here are two recent relevant links:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/energy/10220083/We-could-soon-be-paying-billions-for-this-wind-back-up.html

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole/100232437/official-wind-turbines-are-an-iniquitous-assault-on-property-rights/

    Simply put, we all know that the dishonest mantra of “I am building a wind turbine on my land to help save the planet” really means “I am building a wind turbine on my land to make money and has got absolutely nothing to do with appearing to be green”.

  14. The governments of the countries who allow this lunacy are not fit to govern for the following reasons:
    1) They are taken in by the IPCC which is a political, not a scientific organisation, which depends upon AGW to be fact to continue its existence. Basically our governments have been conned!
    2) Common sense should dictate that the increase of a gas by 0.008% of the volume of the atmosphere is not going to lead to the end of the world.
    3) If the governments are stupid enough to believe in the above then they compound that stupidity by closing down nuclear power stations due to one accident that happened in an area prone to earthquakes where a NPS should not have been in the first place.
    4) Wind power is so intermittent that it cannot be relied upon, you only have to look out of the window to see that the wind does not blow every day.
    5) They think that electric cars are clean, they are not, if the wind doesn’t blow they are charged from gas or coal fired power stations. The batteries they need to power them contain a particularly nasty substance that can kill on contact with skin.
    6) They have passed laws requiring wood chips to be shipped across the Atlantic, to the UK to replace the coal that is on our doorstep.
    The inmates really have taken over the asylum!

  15. Stop confusing us with data! Green energy makes us feel good.

    I am rather happy about having separation of powers and (political) gridlock at times like these. In a smaller country than the U.S., with a parlimentary system you can get huge swings in parties therefore policies and do stupid things very quickly.

  16. Let’s not just focus on the subsidies for renewables, which I think have a place in our power generation strategies – let’s not look a gift horse in the mouth. Sun shines on PV Cell. PV Cell produces power, that takes a lot of arguing against subsidies aside.

    It’s Nuclear that has “Climate Change” as it’s only justification (I live in the land of Sellafield, nee Windscale)
    see http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/energy/10358443/Hinkley-nuclear-deal-hinges-on-profit-sharing.html

    If Nuclear power was viable…………………….

    Here’s another link to a great web page http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk/
    Almost 2 Sizewell B’s of power being generated by the wind at the moment. I know which I would prefer. Have a look here at the horror of my local windfarm generating 16MW

    Think of the noise it generates http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOnf5O-ZjEE
    The cars are deafening …and those birds tweating all the time and the wind !!!!!

    :-)

    Dave

  17. And there is one natural force the doomsday prophets seem to completely underestimate: the explosive reaction of masses of people that feel they have been let down by their leaders. To understand this lesson, one might just have a look at the French Bastille or the many empty palaces in Austria, Russia, Italy, Greece and so on.

    I’ve been thinking this a long time. The Greenies are putting the overall credibility on the chopping block.

  18. Was it not windmills that Don Quixote was pointing his rusty lance at?
    We need another Man of Lamancha now to point to these ludicrous monstrosities that have no way of ever recouping their debt – sheer folly!

  19. I haven’t seen it lately, but several years ago I saw several articles that said that once the wind/solar industries were established, and profitable, then normal competition would drive improvements like those in the computer industry. When you see a cluster of articles that say pretty much the same thing, you can assume it’s on somebodies list of talking points.

    The first problem with this line of “reasoning” is that wind/solar have not become profitable. Of course a proponent would say that mistakes were made, and they just need a little more time.

    The second problem is that their are too many subsidies and too much political corruption to have anything like normal competition.

    But the third problem is the most basic. The improvements in processing power, and the reductions in cost in the computer industry are due to Moore’s law, which is not applicable to any other industry. In particular, the power that can be harvested by a windmill depends on the speed of the wind, and the diameter of the blades. The efficiency of the blades is a far smaller factor. if you scale down a windmill, you will be capturing less wind power. And the power of a solar cell depends on how much light can be focused on it. If you make it smaller then even if you use mirrors or lenses to get more sun light, you will have heat problems.

    I saw some moronic drivel about how if the auto industry had developed as much as the computer industry cars would cost $50.00 and get 200 mph, to which someone else replied, and they would also be the size of a grain of sand.

    Solar/Wind advocates say with great apparent conviction that these things can be overcome, but they don’t say how.

    • Solar/Wind advocates say with great apparent conviction that these things can be overcome, but they don’t say how.

      This is the fundamental misunderstanding. It doesn’t matter how efficient or how cheap wind turbines could become in the future because there is a fundamental energy density limit to wind power. Wind turbines have to be spaced at least 5 times their blade diameter apart from each other. Average wind speed in the UK is known . If you do the sums for the UK the maximum energy density even with 100% efficient plant is 2.2 W/m2. This is a fundamental limit of physics.

      Wind farms also cannot be sited in valleys. They are best sited on hills or exposed places. Now lets try to estimate just how much land you would need to generate say half of UKs (decarbonized) energy needs in 2080. This is ~50GW average running at 30% load capacity.

      Area = 3*(5*10^10)/2.2 m2 = 70,000 square kilometers.

      This needs to be increased by about a factor of 3 to avoid valleys and houses and to allow for access roads and electricity pylons. So at very best we would need 200,000 square kilometers. This is more than the surface area of Scotland, Wales and Devon and Cornwall combined !

      And then sometimes there will still be no wind at all….

      Wind power is NOT the answer !

  20. So much money and time has been wasted trying to come up with better ways to scare folks. The solution is to DEfund all scientific research that does not produce something viable in a reasonable time. “Fear” is not a viable product.

    How about a “new-generation” battery? How about a 48 Volt battery that only weighs 5 pounds, yet will hold 1000 Amp-hrs of charge? Just imagine the benefit to mankind. It only takes one “hungry” scientist!

  21. The smart money is starting to abandon the CO2 vessel

    Guest essay by Fred F. Mueller

    When confronted with overwhelming “scientific evidence”, one should keep in mind the basic question any criminal investigator learns to ask whenever being confronted with a puzzling case: who is benefitting?

    – – – – – – – –

    Fred F. Mueller,

    Your essay adds to the economic critiques of altruistic energy policies. Thank you.

    A couple of observations:

    1. Arguably, ‘smart’ money does not go into investing in government interventions against the free market. So, the ‘smart’ money you suggest is leaving belongs to the ‘not-so-smart’ investors who are not ideologically committed to the altruistic energy policies. The ideologically committed will go down in a bankrupting event.

    2. In detective work, whether the criminal kind or the intellectual kind or the political kind, the question ‘who benefits’ is only one of the basic questions. It is not even the most common or most important of the other basic questions used in basic detective work of any kind.

    John

  22. Following the money always gives the correct answer, not only in business but also in education, “science” and politics. Solar and wind do work well for powering remote stockwell pumps where the alternative is trucking in fuel to run generators. For large scale power production purposes, not so much. In the small scale remote situations wind and solar are much less costly in terms of time and money and are, in certain weather conditions, the only system that can do the job (as these sites cannot be reached in too much mud or snow) and then they will only work if the wind blows or the sun shines enough.

  23. CO2 hoax notwithstanding, Germany’s commitment to spend half a trillion dollars over 20 years on renewable energy sources strikes me as a better waste of money than my own country’s waste of a half-trillion dollars ANNUALLY on its peacetime defense budget. I for one would feel A LOT SAFER if that money was spent on windmills rather than stealth bombers. Both technologies, by the way, are intimately connected to our energy needs — but only one creates a lot of dead people (and revenge-minded relatives) as a major byproduct of production activities. .

  24. There are two rationales for subsidizing renewable energy.

    One, green energy is a public good, in and of itself, because it reduces CO2, lowers pollution and limits the risk of being dependent on foreign energy sources. Well, that is clearly a very limited benefit here and everywhere. The benefit is between 0% and 20% of what green promoters and governments think. It also makes some people feel better but why should I subsidize that. Let them do it. And it is seems like they are willing to do so – whenever a 25% premium option to buy green energy is put up, it often sells out in a short period of time. The green energy producers don’t want to rely on this but instead want a guaranteed 20 year government commitment.

    Second, green energy should be subsidized so that it economics improve in the long-term, through reducing the costs of producing the components and through new technological improvements that will come. Well the costs are likely never going to come down enough to make them economic. The physics of wind and solar is the problem here. The physics is not good enough to produce economic power. Next, if technological improvement is what is desired, then just subsidize research. Don’t subsidize on-going operations of huge facilities using old technology that doesn’t work. That doesn’t lead to any technological improvements. And then, there is the physics again which technology can not overcome in any event.

  25. The interesting question for me is why do smart people keep returning to dumb ideas, generation after generation?
    “Renewables” have been shown to not be sustainable or renewable for generations.
    The history of apocalyptic doom predictions has been shown to have been one of total failure.
    The climate doom culture has, since the Noah flood myths, been shown to be…mythical.
    Yet here we are, serious politicians and academics and opinion makers so committed to AGW as to be willing to trash good economies in the name of their mythic obsessions.
    Why?

  26. Well said indeed. Cui bono. It is quite remarkable that nuclear and hydro do not count as “low carbon” energy. “Low carbon” means only the wind and solar that these particular people are collecting subsidies for. NB, “renewables” is a less accurate term than “unreliables”.

    re: “ nobody bothered to deliver a sound cost or return on investment calculation” – we now have the 50:1 project, so we know the return is stunningly abysmal.

    Dudley Horscroft says “ Unfortunately not so in respect to Australia. We have just elected a government determined to abolish the Carbon Tax, but to have 5% of total energy supplied by ‘renewable’ sources (by 2020) still remains government (and opposition) policy.“. That may be true, but 2020 is two more elections away, plenty of time for a policy change to occur before any actual action. Here’s hoping…..

  27. Great post. Here in mass. Sep 23 front page of boston globe headline ” mass utilities
    Go for wind power”. The comments in this article are comical and sad. These people do not have a clue. Connecticut has a ban on wind but will buy it from New hampshire and maine. Hippocrits.
    Btw pres. Obuma , norway has a carbon capture facility you can buy real cheap. No co2 miles on it

  28. “Germany currently has committed itself to reduce its CO2 emissions by achieving an 80 % share of “renewable” power generation by 2050 while at the same time shutting down its nuclear power plants, which had been contributing 20-30 % of its power supply. ”

    The numbers for Germany are correct (currently 24bn EUR a year in subsidies, paid for by electricity surcharges; resulting in 300 EUR/yr/capita extra cost); but I’d like to add: Electricity is just 1/7th of German Primary Power consumption; 3/7th being heating; another 3/7th being transportation (fuels). Looking through my personal expenditure, transportation clearly comes out on top.

    A superficial look at the renewable energy madness in Germany would say, this gives Germany a competitive disadvantage and results in reduced living standards and loss of growth.

    A more geopolitical look or Realpolitik look at it comes to a rather different conclusion:
    1) The redirected capital is redirected because of a long term strategy
    2) The project is the moon-landing / the Ziggurat of the territory currently called Germany
    3) Together with the Qatar-Syria-Turkey gas pipeline project (destabilization of Syria; repeated propping up of Greece; “liberation” of Albania; Trans-adriatic pipeline project) its goal is to acquire energy sources for the EU territory.
    4) “Saving The Planet” is how it is sold to the masses.

    So the summary is.

    Like any other political elite, the German elite uses the CO2AGW theory as a political lever. The Left has always used it to demand de-industrialization; Thatcher has used it as a bludgeon against the unions; the UN/Club Of Rome/CFR has used it as “the common enemy to unite us” (i.e. to achieve the NWO); the German elite (bloc parties / Bilderbergers) use it to acquire new energy sources. If they can buy farmer votes via the biofuel mandate (GLOBE international’s main objective being promotion of biofuel) all the better.

    The first criticism at all this is that the project is based completely on deception. The EU commission and German bloc parties insist on playing the holier-than-thou game and lose all credibility. All EU media are now lying, censored versions of Soviet times Pravda.

    Yet for the moment the bloc parties cling to power, and the German populace is apathetic; with the usual do-gooder faction even believing in the “save the planet” argument; the “intellectuals” being useful idiots as usual.

  29. Richie says:
    October 6, 2013 at 5:45 am
    “CO2 hoax notwithstanding, Germany’s commitment to spend half a trillion dollars over 20 years on renewable energy sources strikes me as a better waste of money than my own country’s waste of a half-trillion dollars ANNUALLY on its peacetime defense budget.”

    The Empire – of which Germany is a part – needs legions. These legions are, on a per capita base as a fraction of total GDP / capita, in fact cheaper than ever since end of WW 2 (last graph):

    http://www.die.net/musings/national_debt/

  30. The price of energy just across the border will ultimately bring down the “green” industries, or at least force them into honest (unsubsidized) competition. Ironically, it will be the less-free countries that provide that competition since they’re (at least some of them, e.g., China, Russia) least likely to plow money into green projects. There are far more efficient, and easier, ways for them to skim the funds they need for their own pet projects than to set up a massive green energy subsidization scheme.

    Germany is now finding this out; Britain soon will; Spain and Australia already have. The green politicians (really socialists) in those countries have rapidly rendered their exporters uneconomic and now the populaces will pay, either in higher taxes, higher prices, or by being forced to move to a country that is not in the process of bankrupting itself.

    What people often fail to realize is that energy underlies virtually everything they consume. If energy is made expensive, consumption becomes correspondingly expensive. Ultimately, people will gravitate toward those countries that maintain cheap energy prices, whether they do so by simply buying their consumables from those countries, or by going so far as to relocate to them.

  31. Rod Everson says:
    October 6, 2013 at 7:42 am
    “Ironically, it will be the less-free countries that provide that competition since they’re (at least some of them, e.g., China, Russia) least likely to plow money into green projects. ”

    Whether Russia or China are still “less free” than the EU is arguable. The EU’s
    “European Council on Tolerance and Reconciliation”
    just prepares the end of free speech for the EU; insofar as it still exists.
    The EU with its controlled media bloc does a good job of pretending it’s a free society though. All Germans I talked to don’t even know that the Lisbon treaty allows arbitrary killings of whatever the EU determines to be insurgents.

  32. The awful numbers for wind and solar have always been sitting there for anyone with a brain to see. But, “There is none so blind….”

  33. “The smart money is starting to abandon the CO2 vessel”

    Much smart money saw the long-term bubble and never invested.

    Smart money but with PR sensibilities will be trapped until the media consensus says it’s not a problem, and even admits the hype was effectively widespread hysteria mixed with fraud.

    Smart “legal” money will continue to extract profits as long as government makes it profitable. Favored tactic is to build a wind or solar farm, collect all up-front tax breaks, rebates, and other subsidies, then “sell” the operation to a new subsidiary for “market value”.

    Small example: You put up a wind turbine for $10,000 in your costs, collect one-time 20% government energy-saver tax rebate of $2000, get project appraised for $13,000, set up new company that buys it from you for that. You collect $5000 in profit, new company is left to eventually go bankrupt trying to extract $13,000 plus debt interest from the turbine. Repeat.

    As long as government allows it to profitable, smart-while-legal money will stay invested, as long as keeping up the hype keeps their business model profitable.

  34. Steve Richards says:
    October 6, 2013 at 3:36 am

    In my copy of a Sunday Newspaper today, a financial annoucement sums up what is wrong with the renewable energy concept – the investment fund will invest in just built or nearly completed solar farms.

    It predicate 60% of its income will come from Government subsidy!!!

    And we know where Governments get the money from you and me …..

    “MIDAS: New British solar energy fund has chance to shine as Government expects solar to play a growing role in electricity production
    By Joanne Hart Last updated: 5 October 2013….

    I don’t know much about solar power but I had a look at the mean sunshine hours for Birmingham (UK) for January which is 52.5 and February which is 73.9. From vague memory I recall that January and February are the coldest months too. Will Midas face difficulties without subsidies?

  35. Hunter asks:
    “The interesting question for me is why do smart people keep returning to dumb ideas, generation after generation?”

    Because (in my humble opinion) we humans are evolving far too slowly on an intellectual level. In any number of ways, the evolutionary intellectual level where far too many of us are still at today has not really improved much from Medieval times. The ones that believe in CAGW and so-called “green” energy like wind and solar today are the ones who think in largely (if not exclusively) in eco-ideological or eco-religious terms rather than in scientific terms using facts, logic and reasoning. If they lived in the late Middle Ages, these are the same ones who would be burning people at the stake as witches or heretics rather than fully embracing intellectual thought.

    And in some ways, they are still doing this. Today’s “witches” and “heretics” are the AGW skeptics and those who understand that the science and economics behind wind and solar simply don’t cut it. These are the intellectual thinkers rather than the “religious” believers. The latter are figuratively burning the former at the stake today by labeling them “deniers”, “flat-earthers”, and (as some have done) demanding that they be outlawed and locked up if not executed.

    Of course, one could argue that a lack of education has a lot to do with this as well, and I can’t argue with that notion. Others might say that it’s simply in or genes, our DNA, to think and view the issues today in the manner that we do.

    At any rate, it will (I believe) be a long time time in the future before we humans move beyond the tendency to produce myths like AGW and wind and solar energy that are wrongly accepted as credible. And it may take an equally long period of time before we move beyond producing false belief systems like AGW for political reasons as well. It’s all way too sad for an intellectual thinker to contemplate.

  36. From hunter on October 6, 2013 at 6:32 am:

    The interesting question for me is why do smart people keep returning to dumb ideas, generation after generation?
    “Renewables” have been shown to not be sustainable or renewable for generations.

    Because renewables are cheap when you pretty much have nothing else and can wait a bit.

    You have a farm in the middle of nowhere and well water to pump. You’re busy running the farm. You could get a person to hand pump, but you got to pay and feed them, an ongoing expense. About the same for a draft animal, more expense and work.

    Or you can put up a windmill to drive the pump. As long as you get enough wind often enough, it’s cheap, sustainable, just what you need.

    And if a windmill breaks it’s normally fixable for a small fraction of the initial investment. With draft animals, good chance you’ll pay the initial investment again, but maybe with work you can salvage some leather and a few meals.

    Of course the gold standard of renewables is water power, it’s the one that can be reliable enough to be there when you want it. If you have it, then you know it is the one that has been sustainable and renewable for generations when sited properly, barring the rare epic drought coupled with inadequate reservoir capacity.

  37. Interesting announcement in Pure Energy Systems that might have a huge impact on this topic:

    “The Switzerland-based company ST Microelectronics, one of the largest semiconductor companies in the world, has filed a patent application to the United States Patent Office for a Reactor for energy generation through low energy nuclear reactions (lenr) between hydrogen and transition metals and related method of energy generation. The application was filed in February of this year, and the inventors are listed as Ubaldo Mastromatteo and Federico Giovanni Ziglioli.”

    The discusstion continues:

    “The patent explains that a reaction is achieved by the absorption of hydrogen within an active metallic material (could be a number of metals such as Ni, Pd, Pt, W, Ti, Fe, Co and their alloys), applying heat, triggering the reaction and using a mechanism to control the reaction.

    “Interestingly, the patent doesn’t beat about the bush and try and disguise the fact that this is a LENR reaction. They cite Pons and Fleischmann and explain that LENR is a legitimate reaction, even though it is hard to control. Since it has been claimed that USPTO has been known to deny cold fusion patents based on the fact that they don’t accept the legitimacy of the science, this is an interesting approach.

    “ST Microelectronics is a major semiconductor company with 48,000 employees (11,500 working in R&D) and with revenues of over $8 billion in 2012. Having them working the LENR field could be a signal that leading scientists and researchers are now taking LENR seriously as a viable energy source.”

    http://www.e-catworld.com/2013/09/st-microelectronics-files-lenr-patent/

  38. Excellent article.

    Not to forget, our current climate is remarkably stable and because of a couple centuries of warming, comfortable and highly food productive too.

    Now if the climate were to take a sudden turn and plummet 5-9 degrees C, or actually rise 5-9 degrees C; energy requirements will skyrocket.

    Economies of scale do not seem optimal in the green dream of renewable energy. Land does not get cheaper when buying or leasing it in quantity. Hand constructing turbines also does not get cheaper. Keeping solar cells clean and maintained is not getting cheaper.

    Life expectancy of the renewable’s equipment is similarly dismal. Not only are people expected to dig deep to fund renewables, but they’ll have to dig deep and rebuild or replace all of the equipment multiple times in their lifetimes. Establish that existing wind turbines harm nearby residents or destroy enormous amounts of wildlife and they may need to be replaced far sooner. Sadly it is likely that replacing turbines rather than retrofitting turbines will be the least expensive method of updating to people and wildlife safe wind turbines.

    Sooner or later people will realize that they’re never going to wake up and smell roses in the green renewable manure piles.

    Research into green energy may be a good idea. When a researcher has a terrific green energy idea and can sell/prove the value of that idea to investors, then will worthwhile ideas advance. Politicians today all want to emulate JFK’s famous ‘moon’ challenge. Only all of the current approaches fail to set only one goal; instead they imply a goal and then tell people what the approved methods of achieving that goal are. In business it’s called micromanaging, riding herd, herding cats, or just plain demanding silk purses from pig ears. New paradigms just don’t jump out of the same old same old ways of thinking.

  39. “Crash boom bang”

    Haven’t read the article yet. But, I’m wondering who is the drummer boy from Illinois, and where the Purple Gang fits in.

  40. CD (@CD153) says:
    October 6, 2013 at 8:42 am

    “Because (in my humble opinion) we humans are evolving far too slowly on an intellectual level.”

    It is a global “Peter Principle” in action. We have risen to the level of our incompetence.

  41. “…we humans are evolving far too slowly on an intellectual level.”

    How can humans evolve at all when success and intelligence are punished with taxes, and failure and idiocy are rewarded with government subsidies? In today’s world, intelligence does not give you a reproductive advantage. On the contrary, the lazy and stupid are subsidized with higher welfare payments for breeding more prolifically.

    • Indicators of the purposeful “dumbing down” of the general population have been in sharp relief since the late 70’s.

      This is probably a mostly purposeful ploy by many western governments, especially the USA to prevent another loss of control or a rise in “people power” that was demonstrated at the height of the Vietnam war.

      Their succsess in the process has now resulted in a polling booth tame welfare state in what was once “The land of the free”.

      Asia is not saddled with such a myopic single phase manifesto.

      as you sow, so ye shall reap..

  42. Thank you for the article!
    I hope that the crash of the green movement does not follow follow the path of the failure of the Weimar Republic. It was a very bad path that had very bad consequences!!

  43. General update, internet still broken.

    Since one day after the US government “shut down”, out of the blue while I was browsing, the internet per my Earthlink dial-up experience suddenly became normal sites, sites that load slow in short bursts followed by long stretches of nothing, to sites that don’t load at all.

    Here’s are pattern examples:

    Breitbart-dot-com and about a fourth of the other sites linked on Drudge Report: Strongly anti-current US Administration, completely dead. Also foreign sites like The Register, Telegraph (UK), Times (UK), etc.

    WUWT and half the sites linked on Drudge Report: have a record of “questioning the wisdom” of the current US Administration, slow load, no style sheets, ten minutes or more downloading for a somewhat-readable mess.

    Google, Huffington Post, Yahoo!, and others: normal. Includes debian-dot-org and -dot-net, updates are fine. Strangely enough, both Google management and HuffPo are strong supporters of the current occupier of the White House. Drudge Report, the page, loads fine, but the images which are coming from elsewhere often do not. Of course, Drudge being down would be the sure sign of the Final Liberal Apocalypse Takeover having begun, arm accordingly.

    The “Is the site down or is it just me” sites when I can verify a non-working site is really up? Absolutely dead.

    Amazon, which harbors examples of anti-current US Administration thought, is good or slow, on-site search is bad, otherwise hit-or-miss. Hosted-dot-ap-dot-org, source of any direct-linked AP story, which was completely dead, works as of today. Newegg and Allrecipes were slow, better today.

    I have been several days fighting with the off-shored tech support (India? Pakistan?), as they repetitiously work down the “It’s always the user’s fault” checklist. Different computers, Debian Linux or WinXP, Firefox or Iceweasel (Debian FF rebranding) or Epiphany (Debian browser) or the just-installed Chromium (Debian-approved “free” Chrome version), internal modem or external USB modem, different access numbers, same thing. Dynamic DNS, manual Earthlink DNS’, no difference.

    I have read “Earthlink does not support Linux” so often I think the chat “people” believe Earthlink is like Compuserve or AOL, unusable without their Windows access software.

    After a one-hour phone call yesterday, as a next-level live tech person wrapped their brain around the concept of a user who wasn’t helpless and could do their own local troubleshooting and has already shown multiple times that the problem really isn’t on his end even though tech support can’t see a problem on the ISP end, it got bumped higher. I am to expect a response “within 72 business hours”. Space it out, it could be two real-world weeks until I hear something.

    In other words, after the “shutdown” should be ended and the low-level NSA-related persons can get back to legally monitoring potential US terrorists who communicate with anti-US government foreigners like DirkH, Lord Monckton, and Richard S Courtney, someone from Earthlink will email to ask if my internet is working again.

    To any of the assemblage of tech-savvy WUWT denizens who may be able to help, tracert (WinXP or Linux version) shows the blocked sites die at the third hop at user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com. On WinXP, ipconfig /purgedns didn’t help.

    And I still don’t see Chrome as an improvement over Firefox. It’s usable, not better.

  44. To any of the assemblage of tech-savvy WUWT denizens who may be able to help, tracert (WinXP or Linux version) shows the blocked sites die at the third hop at user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com. On WinXP, ipconfig /purgedns didn’t help.

    I think you’ve found the key piece of evidence. From that, I’d expect mindspring engineers ought to be able to reproduce and diagnose the problem. Unless they actively suppress the traceroute messages.

    One problem with trying to get a sense about how well things are working by visiting well known sites is that they tend to have all sorts of crap and references to completely different sites that can be slow.

    One thing you might try on Linux is reading individual URLs with wget, preferably pages written by some troglodyte who writes web pages as though it’s still 1995, e.g.:

    $ wget http://wermenh.com/contact.html
    --2013-10-06 16:14:52--  http://wermenh.com/contact.html
    Resolving wermenh.com (wermenh.com)... 38.113.1.97
    Connecting to wermenh.com (wermenh.com)|38.113.1.97|:80... connected.
    HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
    Length: 1410 (1.4K) [text/html]
    Saving to: `contact.html'
    
    100%[==========================>] 1,410       --.-K/s   in 0s      
    
    2013-10-06 16:14:52 (289 MB/s) - `contact.html' saved [1410/1410]
    

    That just gets the main page, it doesn’t get any images (there’s at least one there) and other glitz. You can experiment with bigger pages, problematic sites, etc. and maybe learn a bit more.

    If you have wireshark installed (and sort of know how to use it) you can get a wealth of information that may or may not be useful.

    FWIW, I can ping and run traceroute to user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com fine.

    Feel free to Email me questions or trace samples, I can mostly explain what they mean.

  45. “Indicators of the purposeful “dumbing down” of the general population have been in sharp relief since the late 70′s.

    This is probably a mostly purposeful ploy by many western governments, especially the USA to prevent another loss of control or a rise in “people power” that was demonstrated at the height of the Vietnam war.

    Their succsess in the process has now resulted in a polling booth tame welfare state in what was once “The land of the free”.

    Asia is not saddled with such a myopic single phase manifesto.

    as you sow, so ye shall reap..”

    I can’t make any sense of this comment except that you appear to want to drop the blame of the CAGW fraud on the United States doorstep by stringing together unrelated nonsensical observations.

    The “people power” of the 70’s anti-war crusaders are largely the same anti-industry crusaders pushing CAGW. Your desire to deify the former and vilify the latter is nothing more than cognitive dissonance.
    The U.S. is a player in CAGW fraud but compared to Britain, Germany, Australia and many others they are minor. You can’t swing a dead cat in most of Europe right now without hitting a windmill. Which then causes the last point to fall flat of blaming the U.S. for leading the cause with a political philosophy based on a phrase that you and nobody else has decided is the philosophy of the U.S. I’m sure you could blame the worlds problems on “Asia” (A continent with quite a variety of politics) by making up another phrase if you really try.

  46. The article is a good effort, but in parts hit and miss. It doesn’t mention the insurance industry as a stakeholder in green alarmism and the money being pulled out of chasing the mirage of carbon capture and storage.

    On the other hand, it is incorrect in saying that unit costs of “green” energy were no reduced by government subsidies. German subsidies single-handedly created China’s solar industry that has reduced installed costs out of sight. In Australia, solar PV is approaching breakeven for domestic applications purely in replacing grid import.

  47. I think you will find break-even in Australia is only true WITH the “gift” of other taxpayers money on substantial subsidies. If it was up to the individual homeowner who has to make a long term commitment, it simply wouldn’t happen.

    I will check with a friend in Perth who has installed panels connected to the grid and he will have a very detailed ROI spreadsheet to reference his experience.

  48. Gunga Din says:
    October 6, 2013 at 1:32 pm
    “If they have to let a building burn because it’s too dangerous to put it out, will the fire release more CO2 than the solar panels saved?”

    What’s more interesting, will they sue the homeowner for the dioxins released?

  49. From Ric Werme on October 6, 2013 at 1:31 pm:

    From that, I’d expect mindspring engineers ought to be able to reproduce and diagnose the problem.

    Earthlink = Mindspring. A Liveperson™ chat person said it was escalated to a server tech. Maybe the next step is an Earthlink network tech.

    Note the NSA-type “requests” to ISP’s came with solid gag orders. Amazingly during 57 minutes of “thoughtful silences”, many reiterations of what I had already said in chats and an email (which had included traceroutes), and my “requested participation” was logging off of Earthlink email on Linux where I was, disconnecting, switching to the Win partition on another machine, reconnecting, and logging on to Earthlink email which showed to the tech that I could access the internet, plus running that Win DNS-cache purge, I somehow got the feeling I was getting the run-around.

    One thing you might try on Linux is reading individual URLs with wget, preferably pages written by some troglodyte who writes web pages as though it’s still 1995, e.g.:

    $ wget http://wermenh.com/contact.html

    Result:

    2013-10-06 17:04:40 (44.3 KB/s) - `contact.html' saved [1410/1410]

    Also:

    $ traceroute wermenh.com
    traceroute to wermenh.com (38.113.1.97), 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
    1 acn04.pa-philadel0.ne.earthlink.net (209.165.107.195) 173.387 ms 182.651 ms 250.623 ms
    2 209.165.101.193 (209.165.101.193) 234.847 ms 209.165.101.161 (209.165.101.161) 244.074 ms 209.165.101.193 (209.165.101.193) 239.302 ms
    3 user-38lcmg1.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.1) 281.910 ms user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.5) 286.748 ms user-38lcmg1.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.1) 294.476 ms
    4 bor02.asbnva16.ne.earthlink.net (209.183.100.194) 321.211 ms 335.440 ms 359.662 ms
    5 user-2injrgh.dialup.mindspring.com (165.121.238.17) 379.164 ms 399.023 ms 417.363 ms
    6 97.67.236.162 (97.67.236.162) 431.331 ms 181.750 ms 97.67.236.152 (97.67.236.152) 223.075 ms
    7 97.67.236.140 (97.67.236.140) 233.886 ms 244.374 ms 253.586 ms
    8 * * *
    9 vb2002.rar3.washington-dc.us.xo.net (207.88.13.162) 278.523 ms 397.593 ms 411.496 ms
    10 te-3-0-0.rar3.nyc-ny.us.xo.net (207.88.12.73) 345.939 ms 365.049 ms 383.018 ms
    11 ae0d0.mcr1.cambridge-ma.us.xo.net (216.156.0.26) 307.259 ms 314.422 ms 416.287 ms
    12 216.55.5.134 (216.55.5.134) 169.749 ms 221.081 ms 229.622 ms
    13 ip38-113-1-97.yourhostingaccount.com (38.113.1.97) 283.808 ms 301.636 ms 288.639 ms

    Is it supposed to be this circuitous? Traceroutes seem to keep looping around and back to the same domains and sub-domains many times. Is this efficient?

    FWIW, I can ping and run traceroute to user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com fine.

    Me too, since it's always the third hop. ;)

  50. And yet Merkel just got voted back with an increase of votes for her party. I think you are being overly optimistic in your view that the renewable energy market will just fold because it is too expensive.
    There is a mentality amongst doomsayers who, lets face it, have already bought into this massive fraud and are therefore not the most discerning people on the planet. On one side they have excess confidence in the doomsday scenarios purveyed by Al Gore and co and on the other side they have excessive confidence that in the long term a renewable answer will be found. I can already hear some of my ex-colleagues spouting the “but renewables (meaning solar and wind) are getting cheaper every day” line – even some people who otherwise have a solid grasp on reality.
    You can use logic as much as you like, but they will remain unprepared to give up on the utopian dream of an endless supply of power from non-polluting sources. And to some extent I think we should be taking some of that seriously though not to in the manner that is currently happening.
    As someone who routinely works in the energy and mining sectors, I can assure you that conventional sources of energy are massively wasteful, polluting and inherently finite. The vision of finding energy sources and efficiencies that can reduce our reliance on these forms of energy is not without merit.
    You are somewhat dismissive of the fact that 600MW won’t keep the nation’s standby lamps glowing – but you make no mention of the fact that supplying energy to standby lamps is just energy p****d down the drain. In fact that entire argument is really just an argument for trying to find a base-load form of renewable energy (geothermal perhaps) or a means of balancing energy
    through storage when there is an excess. Finding means of achieving either of those two things efficiently would have to be high on any nations energy strategy.
    And then there are the efficiencies that should be achievable if we just had the willingness and governments had the b***s to require them.
    Anyhoo – sorry for the rant – In case you didn’t get it, I agree that the utopian view of achieving high level utilisation of renewables through solar and wind is a travesty. However, I also think that using this failed experiment as an excuse for returning to business as usual is also misguided. Wattsupwiththat is full of comments from people who are clearly very intelligent. How about harvesting some of that massive brainpower to considering how we might achieve an energy future that includes an increasing amount of real renewable (and non-polluting) forms of energy and also includes reductions in personal/industry energy consumption through smart methods.

  51. M Simon says:
    October 6, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    “My son. The drummer for “Harmonic Movement” – “

    Sounds great! And, I know you are proud of him. But, you do know the drummer boy from Illinois to whom I was referring was in prison doing the “crash, boom, bang”?

  52. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    October 6, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    Amazingly during 57 minutes … I somehow got the feeling I was getting the run-around.

    Well, that’s pretty long for dealing with incompetance, but not unheard of. Uttering “Linux” throws them off script and gets tham all flustered.

    $ wget http://wermenh.com/contact.html

    Result:

    2013-10-06 17:04:40 (44.3 KB/s) – `contact.html’ saved [1410/1410]

    So, easy stuff works. Try URLs from sites you’re having trouble with. You’re probably really having trouble with sites referenced within, that’s where network traces become useful.

    I tried
    wget -O foo -p http://wattsupwiththat.com/tips-and-notes/
    which should have loaded the page and all the images and other components, but I think the page is too complex for wget to figure out.

    Also:

    $ traceroute wermenh.com
    traceroute to wermenh.com (38.113.1.97), 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
    1 acn04.pa-philadel0.ne.earthlink.net (209.165.107.195) 173.387 ms 182.651 ms 250.623 ms

    13 ip38-113-1-97.yourhostingaccount.com (38.113.1.97) 283.808 ms 301.636 ms 288.639 ms

    Is it supposed to be this circuitous? Traceroutes seem to keep looping around and back to the same domains and sub-domains many times. Is this efficient?

    It’s not unreasonable. It’s not that circuitous, a lot is working up routers at Mindspring/Earthlink to get to a backbone (xo.net), then I’m surprised my Web ISP’s servers are so close to the backbone. It’s 16 hops for me through Comcast, cogentco.com, and a couple others. But less than 100 ms.

    I’m a bit surprised at the variations in latency, you might have some other random traffic going on and it’s showing up in the dialup link. However, that likely isn’t affecting you.

    My guess is that others customers are having similar problems.

  53. It could be that Mr Rabbit is just leaving the RET out there at 20% to support his dam building plans.

    Anyhow, govt subsidies ARE Renewable! Each year, i pay tax. They hand it to Greens to destroy, then i pay more tax again. Renewable!

  54. To make it all worse, natural gas is being used for backup purposes. It’s a huge waste, to be using a fuel that is very practical for vehicle fuel for stationary fuel.

    When the vehicle fuel reaches its limits, its going to mean mass starvation. Natural gas is used to make fertilizer. Liquid fuel is needed for tractors – and they don’t just roll, like on a road – they are pulling a heavy load, all day. It would require batteries the size of large trucks. Or lots of serfs.

    – However much vehicle fuel there is, there’s a limit.
    – Fracking is great, without recent oilfield tech improvements, electricity costs would be worsening much faster. But those wells are relatively short lived, high producers. They taper off quick.
    In other words, the fracking boom is papering over the stupidity – and meanwhile, ever more Nat gas fired generators are replacing coal & nuclear (they can be spun up faster , so they’re less wasteful as backup generators for solar & wind)

  55. In North America certainly, and likely other areas as well,the wholesale price of electricity is used to regulate the power grid. When supply is high, prices drop, and at times even go negative, ensuring that the grid does not burn out due to over supply. When demand is high, the opposite occurs, wholesale prices skyrocket, ensuring that the grid due not brown out due to over demand.

    The problem with feed in tariffs and other guaranteed price mechanisms is that they bypass the wholesale price of electricity that is used to stabilize the power grid. This is not “sustainable”. As the portion of the grid given to renewables grows, the grid will fail under the present regulatory mechanism.

    Thus a new mechanism will be required to stabilize the grid, which cannot be based on market forces unless the feed-in tariffs are abandoned. Either large numbers of civil servants will be required to mandate which power companies can produce power, and which consumers can consume power, or the governments will eventually tear up the feed-in tariffs regardless of long term agreements and the matter will be decided by the courts.

  56. Goldie says:
    October 6, 2013 at 5:56 pm
    In fact that entire argument is really just an argument for trying to find a base-load form of renewable energy (geothermal perhaps) or a means of balancing energy
    through storage when there is an excess. Finding means of achieving either of those two things efficiently would have to be high on any nations energy strategy.
    ========
    the market already takes care of this. if companies can make money balancing or storing energy, they will. the problem comes when governments start to believe that they an do a better job than the markets. the temptation then is to pick winners and losers for political reasons, not economic reasons. the end result is an inefficient economy, which is not sustainable in a global economy. eventually the inefficiencies collapse under a mountain of debt, bringing down governments, nations and empires alike.

  57. From Ric Werme on October 6, 2013 at 7:49 pm:

    Try URLs from sites you’re having trouble with. You’re probably really having trouble with sites referenced within, that’s where network traces become useful.

    Slow loading:

    $ traceroute www.washingtontimes.com
    traceroute to www.washingtontimes.com (38.118.71.70), 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
    1 acn04.pa-philadel0.ne.earthlink.net (209.165.107.195) 169.590 ms 178.348 ms 231.087 ms
    2 209.165.101.193 (209.165.101.193) 216.364 ms 209.165.101.161 (209.165.101.161) 221.163 ms 209.165.101.193 (209.165.101.193) 226.025 ms
    3 user-38lcmg1.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.1) 239.926 ms user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.5) 244.642 ms user-38lcmg1.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.1) 250.266 ms
    4 bor02.asbnva16.ne.earthlink.net (209.183.100.194) 300.714 ms 313.014 ms 335.864 ms
    5 user-2injrgh.dialup.mindspring.com (165.121.238.17) 352.151 ms 371.109 ms 390.472 ms
    6 97.67.236.152 (97.67.236.152) 402.063 ms 97.67.236.162 (97.67.236.162) 179.782 ms 232.417 ms
    7 97.67.236.148 (97.67.236.148) 204.515 ms 97.67.236.140 (97.67.236.140) 220.891 ms 241.527 ms
    8 * * *
    9 10gigabitethernet5-1.core1.atl1.he.net (216.66.2.81) 302.480 ms 307.235 ms 311.979 ms
    10 10gigabitethernet16-5.core1.ash1.he.net (184.105.213.109) 276.754 ms 281.775 ms 293.725 ms
    11 red-4g-wholesale-llc.10gigabitethernet15-6.core1.ash1.he.net (216.66.70.26) 316.620 ms 322.323 ms 152.589 ms
    12 * * *
    [repeats]
    30 * * *

    There’s also a curious discontinuity in accessing this site, between straight URL and wordpress “real” URL:

    $ traceroute wattsupwiththat.com
    traceroute to wattsupwiththat.com (72.233.2.59), 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
    1 acn04.pa-philadel0.ne.earthlink.net (209.165.107.195) 166.490 ms 176.552 ms 227.456 ms
    2 209.165.101.193 (209.165.101.193) 211.790 ms 209.165.101.161 (209.165.101.161) 221.111 ms 209.165.101.193 (209.165.101.193) 216.348 ms
    3 user-38lcmg1.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.1) 248.809 ms user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.5) 260.264 ms user-38lcmg1.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.1) 253.878 ms
    4 bor02.asbnva16.ne.earthlink.net (209.183.100.194) 294.236 ms 316.208 ms 336.210 ms
    5 user-2injrgh.dialup.mindspring.com (165.121.238.17) 353.155 ms 370.259 ms 389.671 ms
    6 97.67.236.171 (97.67.236.171) 401.592 ms 174.859 ms 240.422 ms
    7 97.67.236.169 (97.67.236.169) 204.887 ms 218.854 ms 97.67.236.172 (97.67.236.172) 258.196 ms
    8 66.194.203.109 (66.194.203.109) 271.187 ms 273.597 ms 288.587 ms
    9 64-129-238-118.static.twtelecom.net (64.129.238.118) 263.354 ms 315.950 ms 323.063 ms
    10 xe-8-2-2.edge1.Atlanta4.Level3.net (4.53.234.17) 302.633 ms 297.779 ms 310.933 ms
    11 vlan51.ebr1.Atlanta2.Level3.net (4.69.150.62) 338.093 ms 351.579 ms 366.379 ms
    12 ae-63-63.ebr3.Atlanta2.Level3.net (4.69.148.241) 210.284 ms 210.861 ms 193.819 ms
    13 ae-7-7.ebr3.Dallas1.Level3.net (4.69.134.21) 244.999 ms 270.585 ms 309.027 ms
    14 ae-63-63.csw1.Dallas1.Level3.net (4.69.151.133) 325.766 ms ae-83-83.csw3.Dallas1.Level3.net (4.69.151.157) 289.504 ms ae-93-93.csw4.Dallas1.Level3.net (4.69.151.169) 350.084 ms
    15 ae-2-70.edge3.Dallas1.Level3.net (4.69.145.72) 334.584 ms ae-3-80.edge3.Dallas1.Level3.net (4.69.145.136) 359.545 ms 364.896 ms
    16 LAYERED-TEC.edge3.Dallas1.Level3.net (4.71.170.6) 374.375 ms 369.658 ms 376.709 ms
    17 * * *
    18 59.2.233.72.static.reverse.ltdomains.com (72.233.2.59) 386.360 ms 186.751 ms 173.739 ms
    $

    $ traceroute wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com
    traceroute to wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com (192.0.81.250), 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
    1 acn04.pa-philadel0.ne.earthlink.net (209.165.107.195) 169.137 ms 178.587 ms 228.495 ms
    2 209.165.101.161 (209.165.101.161) 217.377 ms 209.165.101.193 (209.165.101.193) 212.675 ms 209.165.101.161 (209.165.101.161) 222.128 ms
    3 user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.5) 249.241 ms user-38lcmg1.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.1) 261.464 ms user-38lcmg5.dialup.mindspring.com (209.86.90.5) 254.232 ms
    4 bor02.asbnva16.ne.earthlink.net (209.183.100.130) 294.296 ms 307.843 ms 330.328 ms
    5 user-2injrgh.dialup.mindspring.com (165.121.238.17) 348.088 ms 365.908 ms 385.246 ms
    6 97.67.236.152 (97.67.236.152) 397.062 ms 191.925 ms 252.255 ms
    7 97.67.236.140 (97.67.236.140) 220.416 ms 230.823 ms 97.67.236.148 (97.67.236.148) 267.660 ms
    8 * * *
    9 vb2002.rar3.washington-dc.us.xo.net (207.88.13.162) 283.507 ms 358.224 ms 337.452 ms
    10 ae0d0.cir1.ashburn-va.us.xo.net (207.88.13.61) 308.729 ms 318.073 ms 343.703 ms
    11 xe-1-2-0.er1.lga5.us.above.net (64.125.13.249) 362.902 ms 373.832 ms 367.866 ms
    12 xe-9-0-0.cr1.lga5.us.above.net (64.125.21.78) 228.538 ms 231.591 ms 177.652 ms
    13 xe-3-2-0.cr1.dca2.us.above.net (64.125.26.101) 234.274 ms 247.576 ms 264.858 ms
    14 * * *
    [repeats]
    30 * * *

    The high correlation between expressed political beliefs and how problematic it is to reach a site, and how sites are “clearing up” as if someone is de-listing “false positives” like AP and Newegg, is troubling. I wonder how much internet I’d have left if I was running WinXP and IE with the Earthlink software like a good little mindless drone.

    Note how if I was on high-speed like virtually everyone else, the slow-loading pattern (approx 1/6 on, 5/6 off) wouldn’t be much noticeable.

  58. ***
    kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    October 6, 2013 at 12:06 pm
    ***

    kadaka, I feel your pain. Dial-up here until a yr ago. I had to do everything possible to speed up page-loading, even disabling pictures.

    I note that w/Firefox & DSL, the add-ons Ghostery and No-script and a big Hosts file (a list of blocked sites) greatly speeds up page-loading.

  59. This is just a side note and food for thought on renewable energy. Germany was the first great solar and wind market and dominated global demand for years. They installed it when costs for both sectors was many times higher than today. As leader of the pack they will also see the need to replace all of this renewable energy capacity sooner than the U.S. and a lot of other late comers. That replacement need will roughly coincide with the shutdown pledge on its nuclear industry, adding to the total energy cost. Granted the replacement costs will be lower than the original investments, but subsidies will also be gone and the country will have endured years of uncompetitive energy as inputs into exports and domestic cost of living. As for Desertec, it was grand and unstoppable like so many other EU endeavors until the costs and country risk were factored in.

  60. Now the nuclear powerplants especially in France and Czech republic go 100%, while Germany trades its wind/solar grid overload capacity to other countries as Austria for hydro using third countries grids – all must help Germany keep up with their green plans. The grid is overloaded and the operators periodically warn almost every month it will not work like that long time and the blackouts are imminent.

    In 2011 Germany announced with great PR ovations, that they already produce even 12.1 GWh a day by sun (if it shines well), all that was built for unbelievable money in decade of pressurized subsidies.
    That is 0.0069 of the 1730 GWh, Germany consumed that time daily.
    From – then – working nuclear, the Germany produced 23% of electricity.
    0.23/0.007 = 32.85 times the 10 years of the promising solar development….
    It would Germany take just little over 328 years (until year 2339) – if the subsidies continue at same pace and sun shines well – to substitute by solar just for the power from closed nuclear powerplants (by the gas pipeline Nordstream tycoon, then prime minister Schroeder who in 1999 pushed through mandate, which will close all nuclear plants in Germany by 2021 and by his successors).

    So far so good, but in Germany in 2011 they also produced 46% of electricity from coal.
    But there will be no coal in 2323 in Europe, nor in whole Eaurasia, nor in whole world long before the 2323 if the consumption continues just as in 2011.
    A question at hand: If they phase-out nuclear, how they substitute that 46%? (796 GWh/day in 2011) By the wind?

  61. Policies may be changing, but one of the subversive tricks that were played on conventional plants is that they were reduced to de facto low cost backup to renewables. Power from renewables is purchased first, at full price with conventional plants in effect bidding to be low price supplier of the rest. This has bankrupted many, and is unsupportably by any. But since in fact renewables cannot be counted on for base power, the conventional plants are still in reality needed full time, all the time.

    The fecal icing on the cake is that most are not suited to ramping as fast as renewable vary, so equipment suffers and efficiency plummets.

    Forcing renewables to play by the same rules is being pushed in Germany and elsewhere, out of necessity, but is fundamentally unacceptable to their operators; they need the “special satus” to survive.

    So the end game is that all plants of all types go broke. That will literally be a Dark Day.

Comments are closed.