The unsinkable German anti-CO2-Titanic just found its iceberg

Unpleasant encounter with hard facts

Guest opinion by Fred F. Mueller

Until just a few days ago, the determination of the German government to halt the presumed Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW) seemed to be absolutely imperturbable. The main driver behind the German resolve to hammer down CO2 emissions both domestically and abroad while at the same time finishing off its last remaining nuclear power generating units is Chancellor Angela Merkel. The daughter of a clergyman socialized in the formerly communist east of the country, she is known for her outstanding political cleverness and flexibility in avoiding conflicts she feels she can’t win. Nevertheless, there are certain aspects where this cleverness is superseded by an almost fundamentalist doggedness when it comes to certain key points – such as exterminating nuclear power or saving the planet from overheating.

Only a few weeks ago, Germany engaged in a new initiative to revitalize the ailing international effort to reverse the course of constantly increasing worldwide CO2 emissions by replacing the vintage Kyoto protocol by more stringent and binding reduction targets at the UN conference that will be held in Paris in November/ December 2015. To this effect, Germany convinced the other European Union states to agree to a 40 % reduction scheme by 2030, sweeping across opposition from negatively affected member countries using a combination of compromises, financial incentives and sheer politico-economic pressure. As a result, the EU came out with bold CO2 reduction commitments. These in turn were meant to be used as a political lever during the preparatory meetings taking place in the current run-up to the big show.

The push for increased CO2 sobriety…

In order to underscore its ambition to shine out as a beacon of climate saving efforts, the German government additionally decided to further strengthen its position by renewing domestic efforts aimed at achieving its own commitment of reducing national CO2 emissions by 40 % (compared to 1990) until 2020. This target had at first seemed to be easily attainable since the country benefitted from the opportunity to decommission the ridiculously inefficient and energy-squandering industry it inherited from the former communist DDR. But in the past years, this special effect waned and the CO2 emissions even reversed course and climbed again. This countertrend was further underpinned when in the wake of the Fukushima events; the German government ordered to halt eight out of 17 existing nuclear power plants and decided to phase out the remaining ones by 2022. The share of nuclear power was largely taken over by lignite- and coal-fired units, with the result that in the field of power generation, Germany was unable to achieve any reduction since 2000. During the same time period, the electric power markets were flooded with heavily subsidized “green” power, causing prices to collapse to a point where conventional power utilities were unable to generate sufficient revenues. Share prices collapsed and more than ten thousand qualified jobs disappeared. In the centers of political power in Berlin, the grievances of the sector went unnoticed and even the most urgent submissions fell on deaf ears. To add insult to injury, just a few weeks ago, the sector was confronted with tough additional regulations requiring it to further reduce its CO2 emissions, while signs of mounting albeit muted unease in a growing number of industrial sectors heavily burdened by skyrocketing energy prices were ignored.

This resulted in the rebellion of vital players…

In this situation, the frustration felt by a number of foreign investors in the sector – in the first place those involved in the energy giants E.ON and Vattenfall, a subsidiary of a Swedish state-owned energy producer, culminated. The background is highlighted in a recent article written for the renowned German financial newspaper “Handelsblatt” by Wolfram Weiner, former chief editor of several leading print media. In his item, he used unusually drastic language to chastise the current state of the sector: “In reality, E.ON is capitulating. Faced with wrong decisions and impositions instigated by the German energy policy, the power generation industry is giving up in despair because political leaders have narrowed down their maneuvering space to such an extent that they are choking to death. For too long a time, the political class naively believed that E.ON and RWE (the second in rank of the sector) could be indefinitely squeezed just as a lemon – but now it is dawning to some that there simply is no more juice left…the “Energiewende” (Energy U-turn) resembles a communist command economy…(the policy) has within a short period of time achieved what the communists had been dreaming of for decades: Power generating groups are being dismantled, market rule is supplemented by command economy. But the question remains – who will in the future care about Germany’s power supply, who will invest? Is the state willing to take over these activities too in order to finalize energy-socialism”?

The led to an event that can be likened to the proverbial iceberg unexpectedly popping up right in front of the German state ship while it was plowing through the waves on its climate-saving mission at full-steam. With just a 48-hour notice delivered by a personal phone call to Ms. Merkel on a Saturday, the CEO of E.ON, the largest German and European power producer, let it be known that the company had decided to split itself in two, one part grouping fossil and nuclear power generation and a second part encompassing the “politically correct” activities in the field of “renewable” energies. Sort of a “Bad E.ON” / “Good E.ON” move. The intention is to get rid of the “bad” part as soon as possible by putting it up for sale. At the same time, this also means the “good” part will cease to be duty bound to ensure a stable power supply under all circumstances. Obviously, such a liability is not enforceable from an entity whose only power sources are unstable wind and solar power plants. In a nutshell, the message behind this move is that the silverback of the “big four” German energy producers who group the bulk of the country’s conventional and nuclear power production is about to close shop at short notice. The others will probably follow suit.

Inflicting a deadly setback…

A situation where a country’s leadership is left only 48 hours to digest this sort of threat can be likened to the sudden crash of the Titanic hitting its iceberg. Although most of the German public has not yet noticed that something really important has gone wrong, frantic activities can be noticed on the bridge, with both the minister for economic affairs and the chancellor’s office hastily preparing new legislation aiming at enhancing the situation of coal-fired plants by implementing an all-new market design. It will most certainly provide for compensation payments for coal-fired plants forced to turn idle or at minimum load when the grid is clogged by an oversupply of wind and solar energy. According to comments in various press articles, the German government seems to have realized its vessel is taking in water and is starting to list. So while the ship’s orchestra composed of green and socialist parties together with assorted NGO’s and the accomplices in the media is doing its best to drown out first anxious noises by playing climato-patriotic anthems at full pitch, the power brokers in Berlin seem to be hammering out a plan B in a desperate attempt to fend off a catastrophic breakdown of the nets. Outlines currently emerging suggest that

A) Nuclear power will remain banned. More than 30 years of demonization of the technology probably cannot be reversed,

B) Plans to rein in the soaring price of electric power prices will be abandoned. A key representative of the ruling CDU party has already warned that price hikes will continue.

C) The hope of the government that highly flexible combined cycle gas-fired power plants can be deployed in large numbers to offset the highly volatile production from wind and solar plants has gone up in smoke since these entities have much higher costs than coal-fired units. They thus were the first to succumb to the market distortions brought about by the heavily subsidized “renewable” technologies.

D) The government now implicitly recognizes that in the years to come, coal and lignite fired plants will play a substantially bigger role in securing the country’s power supply than projected. The obvious hope is that it may be possible to stabilize the vessel without having to explicitly admit the core pieces of the previous strategy have to be scrapped.

On to sweet green dreams

While the German public, lulled by decades of seemingly incessant economic upturn, will probably continue to ignore these harsh realities for some time, the long-term implications for CAGW supporters inside and outside of the country do not bode well. Given the fact that the “renewable” energy lobby remains extremely strong, with millions of people having been misguided to invest their life’s savings and pension claims into “planet-saving” energy projects, resistance to any plans to limit further engagements in the “green energy” sector will be extremely fierce. Together with the need to stabilize the ailing conventional energy sector in order to avoid a total breakdown, all requirements for energy costs spiraling out of control are in place. The government can only hope that the public will continue to accept these hikes without too much resistance. But a major stumbling blocks remains in place: German electric energy prices, already the second-highest in Europe, are increasingly choking off economic growth. More and more key sectors such as the aluminum, steel making and chemical industry are increasingly opting out of investing in the country, turning to regions offering more reasonable energy prices, notably the US. Over time, this will put the wealth of the country and with it the fate of its political leaders in jeopardy.

Germany’s anti-CO2 policy is poised to fail

With their naïve two-pronged approach to abolish nuclear and fossil fuel powered electricity generation in parallel, the German political leaders have maneuvered themselves into an impasse and now find themselves caught between a rock and a hard place. The “renewable” sector propped up with at least half a trillion € in subsidies has reached proportions making it too big to fail, while conventional generation will now call in the same favors that had hitherto been granted to the “good ones”, threatening to cut supplies if they are not treated likewise. Embittered by more than a decade and a half of injuries “sweetened” by insults, one can expect that they will probably be pushing for fulfilment of their demands with little regard as to whom it might hurt. With the door to nuclear generation firmly shut and welded tight, German CO2 emissions are set to increase as naïve expectations of falling electricity demand will dissipate. Especially since no-one seems to have taken into account the power requirements of e.g. the many million electric cars that are supposed to crowd German streets in the coming decades. While arrogantly claiming the role of a vanguard policy-maker with respect to climate-saving measures, German politicians have entangled themselves in a maze of conflicting interests and harsh realities restraining their actions to near-immobility.

At some point, when the populace will finally realize it has been fooled and plundered, politicians will refrain from CAGW aspirations when it becomes evident they will not be favorable for their future prospects to be elected. And if and when Germany fails in full focus of the spotlights they themselves asked to be turned upon them, the CAGW theories will suffer a major blow on a worldwide scale. This might hopefully turn out as an important contribution to the demise of the whole CAGW scam.

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Mike in Chile

I find this refreshing and occurring perhaps a bit earlier than I thought.

David Harrington

The stupidity and lack of any sign of foresight with these policies is breathtaking.

Al McEachran

Finally the reality that wind and solar cannot be integrated into a stable electricity system is jumping up to bite technology-challenged politicos.

Rhoda R

Now all we have to do is to convince our own leadership of this. I suspect they just think the Germans were doing it wrong.

gbaikie

LOL
The problem was pols failed to send the correct message.

pete j

Don’t the Germans continue to burn a good portion of their garbage for steam/power? I wish we in the us could make better use of this wasted resource.

latecommer2014

I had an interesting day …. On the way to Napa Ca to see my grandson play a basketball game I drove by the hundred or so wind turbines near Fairfield. I saw an access road with an open gate and on a whim I turned in. I was early so I took a walk around a couple of these incredible machines I found nine raptors lying dead and five Candian geese ( that should p##s of some of our group) dead, and actually mutilated around the bases of just two of them. As a conservationalists I am both sad and angry. The fact that the True Believers tolerate this shows what they are as human beings better than words could ever tell.

Gentle Tramp

Some years ago, there was a bestseller in the German bookstores with the title “Deutschland schafft sich ab” (= Germany does eliminate itself). The book was to truthful and consequently not politically correct enough (regarding the problems of the large muslim migration into Germany) and was therefore heavily criticized by the mainstream media. Although power supply was not discussed in the book, its title is very fitting for this topic as well!
BTW: Rather sad but true: Every nation has the government it deserves…

Leonard Lane

How True Gentle. The USA would be in the same shape that Germany is if it were not for the success of private enterprise on private lands for shale gas and oil in the USA. Now that the Republicans have given Obama all he wanted, I fear that he will find a way to slow the private energy production or somehow limit their markets. Private enterprise just does not fit will with radical leftists and the “useful idiots” who follow them. Seems the rich will get richer, the poor will get poorer and the middle class will be squashed.
I wish the American public had the desire and the ability to create a new conservative party that would eliminate the GOP and start shrinking the left. Sigh.

JST1

The foresight was that energy providers would sit still for the confiscation of their wealth in order to subsidize low costs to the consumer. So yes, stupidity.

Olaf Koenders

If ever this green stupidity is permanently choked off, it’ll be seen as grand an idiotic vision as per the brown shirts. The only reason these fools are constantly voted for – parties being irrespective – is because some areas of the population are just as simple-minded, or could care less.
What an amazingly deep hole of greed and ignorance Humanity has dug for itself. It must be sequestered immediately there.

stpaulchuck

It’s just like 1939 redux (politically). The population is always up for anything sold to them as righteous, like saving the planet from the Satanic Gases. By the time the country is too far down the road, no one wants to admit that they were wrong. The pols just move on to “the next thing” and the sheeple obediently volunteer to follow along for Pious Points.

The entire faux-green pyramid scheme needs to come tumbling down, and the sooner, the better!

Dawtgtomis

Let’s hope the new congressional majority takes a cue from this development and halts the ‘long green train’ before it hauls the US off to Hell.

mellyrn

And just as faux climate “science” brings disrepute onto all of science, so does faux environmentalism bring disrepute onto basic environmental “housekeeping”.

Sue

The standards of living in industrialized countries MUST COME DOWN, people need to move off the rural lands. So sayeth the UN! Google thegoodmanchronicles.com for an analysis of AGENDA 21.

stpaulchuck

read ‘The World Inside’ for a prescient sci-fi view of that future

Reblogged this on the Original "Mothers Against Wind Turbines™" and commented:
The Demise of the Faux-Green Scourge is Inevitable…

Johanus

“Chancellor Angela Merkel … is known for her outstanding political cleverness and flexibility in avoiding conflicts she feels she can’t win.”
Perhaps also having a PhD in physics has given her some technical insights unavailable to most politicians.

Tim in Florida

The most blinded and narrow minded person I have ever met was German with a PhD in Physics. Merkel fits in well.

Solomon Green

Actually it is in physical chemistry and her thesis was on quantum chemistry which Wikipedia describes thus:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_chemistry

Alberta Slim

They are never wrong [in their view]. They must have gotten 100% on every test they have ever written.

Thank God, I’m a German w/out PhD…

mebbe

Johannes,
It wasn’t clear to me that the PhD was the really bad part. It could have been the Physics part, but your sense of relief might be premature!

…and what was our Dear Leader’s thesis on?

brians356

And Dear Leader’s first Energy Secretary was a Nobel Laureate physicist, Steven Chu, who infamously quipped “Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.”

TYoke

Chu’s silliest idea was to combat global warming by painting roofs and roads white. If one actually bothers to run the numbers, it will quickly be seen that this idea has immense costs, both economic and environmental, and no payoff.
Huge new quantities of TiO2 must be mined. Gigantic fossil fuel paint factories, etc. All for an infinitesimal increase in Albedo, that quickly vanishes as the paint ages and darkens.
Absurdity on stilts from this Nobel Prize winner.

michaelspj

Perhaps her being the East German Environment Minister who mainly wrote the 1992 UN Climate Treaty makes it very hard for her to abandon her commie roots. Why does no one address this kinda big deal?

Newsel

Like that. Never considered that perspective. Ideology trumps reality.

strike

A small correction. She was the German Environment Minister under Chancellor Kohl and is from East Germany. She never served the former East-Germany as far as we know. I don’t think they even had an Environment minister in the GDR.

Sue

The UN’s Agenda 21 is the cause of this mess.

Al McEachran

Finally the reality that wind and solar cannot be integrated into a stable electricity supply is jumping up to bite technology-challenged politicos. Ontario, Canada is next in line, however without the demonization of nuclear.

Billy Liar

I thought the Canadians had a CANDU attitude to nuclear.
I’ll get my coat.

Owen

Surely the Germans will meet their CO2 targets by buying French nuclear generated electricity.

SandyInLimousin

Well France doesn’t produce enough for the UK, Germany, Spain, Holland and Belgium all of whom are relying on Nuclear power from France to keep the lights on. Hollande is going for wind in a big way and closing Nuclear.
http://www.ewea.org/blog/2013/01/france-to-invest-e3-5-billion-in-offshore-wind-energy/
He’s also against Shale Gas, so by the end of his watch France will be pretty much an energy basket case like the rest of the EU.

ConTrari

The French are just belatedly following the folly-fashion of Germany. Their wind-power sector is small, and they will hopefully not committ themselves very deply into this adventure.

Robertvd

SandyInLimousin
The country is called The Netherlands NOT Holland. It is the same mistake as talking about England while you mean Great Britain.

mebbe

Robertvd,
You’ve got an up-hill battle trying to sell that one!
Seeing that you obviously don’t get out much, try a virtual tour online, starting with the Holland board of Tourism.

lee

Robertvd, I was thinking the reference was Hollande of France, rather than Holland, The Netherlands.

brians356

Uh, France just made a left turn, and are vowing to wean themselves off nuclear power ASAP. About the only reason to admire the France was her early and successful commitment to nuclear power. Baby with bath water, what? Stupid is as stupid does.

phlogiston

How can France “turn left”? Left doesn’t get lefter than France. Its like saying “North Korea turns left”.

It’s just the opposite: Coal and lignite power plants cannot throttled quickly when Renewable Electric Power is produced. So they sell their electricity to low price or pay even to get rid of it to Countries with Gas Power Plants: The Nehterlands, GB, Beigium, Italy and France. These are very happy to get free energy and slow down their gas plants.
So the Energiewende is regulated by friendly neighbors who save a lot of money. If electric power is missing in South Germany, we buy electricity from Austria, which has some old-fashioned petroleum power plants, which were due to be dismantled because of inefficiency.
The Austrians are very happy they didn’t and make good business with them – producing even more CO2.

Newsel

And a greener planet….might need it if this prediction proves to be correct.
http://spaceandscience.net/id16.html

Brian H

Germany may overtake Denmark as the most egregiously overpriced energy supplier to its own consumers and industry. Such inhibition and discouragement of electric use will have vast unintended but hardly unforeseeable consequences. At least, I hope they are unintended …

sumdood

not to mention the waste of fuel due to the need to keep the coal plants running at a maintenance level, if it were not for the renewable power , the coal plants could be shut down when not needed.

Crispin in Waterloo

Yes they do import ‘nuclear electricity’ from France. So does the UK. Without French nuclear power plants the UK and Germany would already have had huge problems keeping the lights on. To shut down Europe, the greens have to shut down the French nuclear reactors. That day approacheth.

paqyfelyc

well, actually that days recedes. Watermelons succeded in having a nuclear power plant (fassenheim) planned shut by 2016. Then they stepped back from government, and everybody hates them because of a very stupid housing law. Now the shut down is still officially to be done, but “in the beginning of 2017” … except that 2017 is the election year, when they will be expelled them from government.

Latitude

With the projected gas and oil prices…..it would probably be cheaper for everyone just to get their own generator

The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley

Funny you should say that, I thought the same. There must come a point where it would indeed be cheaper to have a generator running (buried in the garden) to supply all your electric needs. On average, we use 44 kilowatts a day – 13 kilowatts a day in Summer, and peaking in the Winter at 90 kilowatts a day. So we’d need a generator capable of supplying a moment peak of about 10 kilowatts. Would like the figures (in English pounds if poss) if anyone can do them.

TYoke

I think you must mean kW-hrs for most of the numbers above(44,13,90), but I take your meaning.

Jer0me

Firstly you need the right units. I can only assume you are referring to kilowatt hours. Is that right?

Nigel Harris

You’d be looking at around £0.75/kWh using red diesel (taxed at a much lower rate than road diesel). So the oil price would have to fall very substantially further to achieve parity even with renewables.

dipchip

I think you are referring to Kilowatt hours per day or an average of 1833 watts of power. 44/24hrs

asybot

@ big jim, about the burying the generator , I read some where that was done during WWII to cut noise, I have a generator but where do I find the formula to dig it the right size/ depth etc. I have looked but stumped, Help?

If you have access to a supply of wood you could make it work. The expensive part is building or otherwise obtaining a 10Kw wood fired steam or Stirling engine, to turn the generator. You also need to figure out some kind of automatic feeder, such as a wood chip feeder used in some home heating systems, otherwise you’ll be out every other hour putting more wood into the firebox.

The Green Fraud bubble burst in March 2011; Fukushima and the shutting down of nukes in Germany

Dawtgtomis

To see the dawn of enlightenment, one must keep vigil through the night of ignorance

Doug UK

The folly of Merkel is not that surprising given her background. No disrespect to her or others from the old communist blocks – but I doubt she even considered that a company free to make such decisions would actually do so.
No doubt one of the options under consideration is legislation to stop such freedoms in the future.
We had better all – “Watch this space” …………………

J Martin

Some sort of legislation already exists in Germany, I think to prevent them from simply shutting down power generation and going home. It must be tempting to just close unprofitable facilities, have the equipment dismantled and sold for scrap, have the sites cleared and apply for planning permission to build houses on the land.

Chip Javert

Well they can pass whatever laws they want, but (don’t know who first said this) things that can’t go on forever usually don’t.
King Canute understood this roughly 1000 years ago.

Gary Hladik

That was my thought. If the German government is determined to proceed with this folly, the logical next step is to complete the government takeover of the energy sector, either explicitly or under the table with more “regulations”
The taxpayers can’t subsidize this train wreck forever, of course, as Greece has shown. Unfortunately, with Germany down the tubes there will be nobody left to bail out the EU (the US is already broke).

Resourceguy

In very general terms, the Germans rightly observe the oddities of the Brits and the flamboyant fail of the French. But they themselves are periodically subject to massive fail in the wrong direction with classic German determination to the unfortunate end. Perhaps the needed policy u-turn can be expressed in a German superiority statement they they were the first to recognize the course correction and bravely act on it.

brians356

Something just popped into my nimble (i.e. always skipping) mind: “Shoot the Germans and feed the French.” (from “The Dirty Dozen”.)
Now, what were we talking about … ?

Chip Javert

The choice is to believe one of the following about German “green power:
(1) Merkle, et al. had absolutely no idea what they were doing, and were literally about to drive the economy off the cliff;
(2) Merkle, et al. had a reasonably idea about the folly of current “green energy”, but were hoping for an undefined German engineering miracle to make it cost-effective.
Best case: looks like the economic folly happened faster than expected (German electricity is about 3 times the USA rate), and the engineering miracle still isn’t even on the horizon.
Lessons learned: As of today, Merkle is smarter than Obama.

In a political cabaret show the speaker had it’s own opinion:
C): They don’t tell her everything…

NC Brian

I like my $0.11 per kwhour. Of course I have a nuclear plant 5 miles (6km) away.

Resourceguy

Correction: where they were the first…..

Newsel

With this administrations “war on coal” we are heading down the same road. This article needs to be read by those in power in Washington DC as a prediction rather than a warning as the EPA’s “Road Map” is quite clear. Their recently proposed Regulations concerning Coal Fired Power Plants and CO2 sequestration is an attempt to force feed unproven and costly (from both a CAPEX and OPEX perspective) technology down the US energy industries throats. If issued, these regulations will ensure energy costs sky rocket and will ensure our energy intensive manufacturing base will once again head overseas. The number of jobs lost will be in the millions not the 10’s of thousands who have lost their jobs in Germany. In this regard, Germany is the Canary in the Mine.

CarlF

And Obama will reply that “we will do it right”.

Newsel

After the lies surrounding Obamacare and his spin and his goons comments on the stupid public, who is going to believe the Lair in Chief? Oh, forgot, maybe Chief Justice Roberts… 🙁

crosspatch

The real tragedy in all of this is how much money was stolen from average Germans to pay for this and went into the pockets of the “green” charlatans.
By the way, Germany’s economy (and that of Japan) will not recover until they get those nuclear power reactors turned back on and reduce the amount of imported energy they must buy.

Not only the charlatans are earning money: Every middle class house owner is getting lots of money if he has installed solar power on his roof – guaranteed for 20 years. So people with low income or tenants are paying the bill – especially as the high power consuming industry is getting electricity comparable to international price level.

Not every one. Our WUWT host installed independent solar panels without feed-in to the grid. He did that because his power rates in California reached to .90 cents.
And adding electric cars to the grid at a time like this – who thought of that? The middle class?
And besides, it is more like Sir Mick Jagger, Ted Turneer, and Hugh Heffner that are installing to the most acres of roof panels and solar farms.
Cannabis Generation prophets of the sexual revolution are not middle class, last I heard. In fact, they always did hate the middle class, and we have hardly recovered from their drugged up divorce culture. The next sexual revolution they are working like fiends for will involve more drugs, and children. Folks, you have been had.

MCourtney

UK has the same policy.
Bribery for the middle classes that also commits them to supporting green policies.
Good politics. Bad economics.

Zeke, I’m talking about Germany, not the U.S. Some of the winners are also farmers with solar panels and wind turbines on their fields – a special kind of crop rotation.

Thank you for the clarification.
No one is bringing up the German bio-gas plants, which were expected to create full employment with green jobs providing green energy to green towns.
Note to Germans from the harmony starved world: composing – not composting.

(:

Some of the winners might be operating these:
“Monster Machine! Worlds biggest Bucket Wheel Excavator in maintenance / Conveyor Consolidation Point
Seen from the viewpoint: ‘Garzweiler Aussichtspunkt Jackerath’ in Germany.
This is the largest movable machine on land.”

But with “crop rotations” such as those wind turbines and solar panels, Germany might miss being able to grow sugar beets and grain. You need a lot of fungicide to have sugar and beer.
Or does Germany plan to ban fungicides in the rest of Europe, then commence using them again in Germany?

Thank you, Zeke. I love Bach, but I never heard a Brandenburg Concert in a way like this. Really light and soul-lifting playing.
Btw, I’m planning to put a composting toilet into my weekend house. I already have some plans from the U.S….

Jeff

The problem is that the panels are too expensive and wear out before they’re paid off. Sadly, installation is required if you do more than a certain amount of work on your house (or you have to select an exorbitantly expensive “green” energy supply). The same is true of adding insulation to a house, where the amortization runs around 51 years or more. Add to that that styrofoam (most often used as exterior insulation) has now been discovered to be a major fire hazard (fancy that…greens waking up after all), and it’s ugly all around.
Every time I look at my electric bill I’m inclined to say words I shouldn’t. When I was growing up across the pond in California, PG&E encouraged folks to use more and more energy, to the point that a 200-amp service worked out to be cheaper than a 100-amp one. I think the KWh cost was around 3 cents back then(shows how old I am…).
Another point about the roof panels is they make access to the roof itself orders of magnitude more difficult, and can have extremely dangerous complications in the case of a short, miswiring, or equipment failure. Plus, there’s lots of places where there’s not enough sun to make the whole thing worthwhile.
I wonder if “Mutti” knows the last time there was a Tsunami in Deutschland…. the greens seem to think there’s a danger…then again, they’re slowly becoming irrelevant….

The German Economy still is very healthy – no problems so far. The government has even decided not to incur new debts – which is a novum not only in Europe for decades – the U.S. are much worse.
It’s because of our wealth we can play such games, but it’s getting a bit tighter in future, when all to nuclear plants will be shut down. As Mr Mueller stated – It is nearly impossible to return back to atomic power, because they have done a U-turn threefold: First away from it, than back to it, now away again.
No party which was already involved will make the fourth U-turn. They will loose their credibility. And the current Groko (Große Koalition – great coalition with conservatives and socialist democrats) have 80% of the seats in Parliament.

Jeff

There’s always the AfD – they might be a reason to go back to nuclear. Remember, it’s the EU who are pushing “no nukes are good nukes”…. most if not all of the subsidies/ridiculous rules are because of the idiots in Brussels…

Johannes – are you sure the German economy is healthy? According to some, Germany is officially in recession:
http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2014/10/economist-explains-14

richard

Wayne Delbeke December 10, 2014 at 8:01 pm
Johannes – are you sure the German economy is healthy? According to some, Germany is officially in recession:
—————
Even the drop in the values of the Euro has not kick started the economy.

Non Nomen

Getting shale gas out of its own territory as much as reasonably possible would help for a start!
But the ordinary folks don’t like it, because of fear of landslides. They don’t like nuclear energy because of Fukushima. They don’t want coal fired power stations because of CO2. They don’t want lignite for same reason plus gigantic holes in the landscape. They don’t want powerlines from the shores where most of the wind turbines are because they look so ugly. They don’t want to heat with ordinary firewood because that is too cumbersome. They can’t afford electrical heating etc etc etc. Not far from now, the germans will be where they have been some 2000 years ago, but on a highly sophisticated level of ‘naysaying’.

Excellent summary of the massive German energy debacle, thanks.
The upside of this mess in Germany is that it serves as a clear example to the rest of the industrialized world of how massive deployment and subsidizing of unstable green energy is a huge mistake.
It’s clear that India and China have no interest at all in following Germany’s lead other than paying a little lip service no and then for the green cause. Canada and Australia won’t even do that.

Jim Francisco

You would think that the Germans would be tired of serving as a clear example.

Made me chuckle… despite of being a German. We can swallow something – after a certain distance of time…

Haven’t command economies already proven to be a failure? How many more countries have to try this again.

Newsel

And that is without considering the approach being taken by E.ON as described in the article. The term “Energy Socialism” used in the article is not very far from the truth. Or is “Energy Socialism” the end game for those in the US who support the notion of “Big Government”?

Jim Francisco

Once again the German people have fallen for “the big lie” and allowed crazy people to take control of them. It also appears that they may not be able to stop them once they realize the ruin that they are bringing. At least this time they won’t have to pick up so many bricks.

Doug Proctor

Various groups have claimed that Big Business, and the fossil fuel business in particular, run Government. The debacle in Germany seems to say that at least in Germany, this is far from the truth.
Energy prices the highest in Europe …. California has the highest gasoline prices in the US. This fact hasn’t become a problem with the electorate yet. Energy may not be as price sensitive as one might think, at least to the average citizen. But as industry is mobile these days, jobs will disappear in search of cheaper operating costs … yet towns in America, such as Detroit, have hollowed out without a voter or goverrnmental revolt.
Germany can devolve on the world stage just as any Nation can. The Romans thought their empire would last forever, and it did well for a long time. Did Rome fall because of foolish political positions inappropriate to a changed world? Probably.
Maybe Angela will be seen as the Gorbachev of Germany, the bright light that dismantled a powerful entity for liberal causes.

Jeff

Oh, goodness no. This all started with Schroeder and Trittin. Merkel goofed up by doing the “expedient thing” to call the green’s bluff. Trouble is, the rest of us are paying for it. With every utility bill, and everything we buy. The §&%% energy prices make food, transportation, clothing, equipment, entertainment, basically everything more expensive in proportion to the various taxes that float down from the EU and elsewhere. It’s not just Merklel’s (or any elected leaders’) fault. It’s the unelected “Kommisars” of the EU Commission that are controlling this. The “elected” EU Parliament is just a rubber-stamping machine…

The great irony, and a further nail in the coffin for Germany’s heavy industry (and thus for Germany’s economy) is that with oil prices falling, the costs of generating electricity from oil and/or gas is going to fall precipitously. But Germany is stuck with renewables and coal, and those prices will NOT fall. Therefore, places such as the US (and especially Texas) which can generate large amounts of electricity from oil and gas are going to have a huge competitive advantage over Germany for any manufacturing facilities.
For just one example, aluminum is an extremely power intensive business; the energy used costs more than the raw material or the labor. It may soon be 4 times as expensive to manufacture aluminum in Germany than in the US, solely because of these energy costs. Obviously, this means the death of all energy intensive businesses in Germany and their only hope of survival is to move manufacturing to places with much cheaper energy costs. (China is another big winner, because they can now import much cheaper oil for their industry)
The German economy is going to nosedive over the next 2 or 3 years because of this, and its going to take all of Europe with it. China, America, and any other manufacturing centers with lower energy costs are going to be the beneficiaries of their fall.

ConTrari

And this will make the Greens very happy, because the evil economic growth will stop. Continue this policy world-wide, and there WILL be millions of hunger-deaths, just like Mr. Ehrlich (which literally means “honest” in German, rather ironical) predicted.

It won’t stop in China, because China won’t put up with this nonsense, so it’s just a nice way to make sure that economically, China will rule the world.
And that probably is what the greens really want, after all.

MarkG

The Western left are just the ‘useful idiots’ for the Chinese. Some days, I have to wonder how much the Chinese paid them to take out the competition.

Jim Francisco

Just like the last time their economy collapsed.

heysuess

The purported originator of the entire CAGW scheme – certainly its strongest salesman during the initial phases – Maurice Strong, decamped to China years ago, and it has been said that he partly occupies his time advising the Chinese government. Kewl, eh?

Newsel

Probably heads their US / China negotiating strategy Think Tank….

Some comments (from me as a German) to the posts above about the current state (condition) of Germany:
– Germany will find a way to get out of these problems – the problem for the government is to do it without loosing their face.
– the leading conservative party had their annual meeting today and they announced to concentrate on further economical development and growth – they are aware of the problems.
– possibly they just wait until the Lima Climate Meeting is over. As the results will be very low, Germany still can state that they do better.
– electricity in Germany for heavy industry is still cheap – about 5 or 6 ct, as far as I know. And the minister of Economy (Gabriel) has stated very often that he will not allow higher prices.
– We still have Gas Power Plants ready to use – if the prices come down they will be used again. Lignite we have in abundance and to very low prices – and we have extremely clean and efficient power plants to use it – and still some new ones are constructed. (Extremely clean meas: Nothing gets our except CO2 and water vapor.
– my guess: Energy prices will not go up considerably, CO2 emission will go up a bit, energy efficiency will be enhanced. Germany will not be ruined.

Jim Francisco

Well Johannes I really hope you are correct. I feel very fortunate that I was able to visit Germany in 1989. It is the most beautiful country I have seen and I have seen and lived in quite a few. The people were great also. I highly recommend everyone that can afford it to visit.

Brian H

losing their face
800,000 consumers whose power has been cut off for non-payment may disagree.

mebbe

Jim Francisco,
Now I have to ask; which is the least beautiful country you’ve visited?

Jim Francisco

Well mebbe it was Iraq. Kuwait wasn’t much to look at either

Non Nomen

You don’t get away with it. All these matters are to be dealt with by politicians. Politicians are notorious liars. I have never ever heard a politician say that he has no idea how to tackle a problem(the only exception is Nigel Farage and he’s not a politician. He’s a man in politics.). So they do some things often in the most erratic ways just to lay a smoke screen to hide their incompetence. As long as the people has no say(and these politicians are more than keen to stay on the gravy train of public office) things will not change. Merkel and others of that ilk -especially these unelected Brussels commissars- will never ever see that some sort of direct democracy like in Switzerland might replace the antics of politicians.

ConTrari

The Bismarck was usinkable too.
The German energy policy will perhaps not collapse like crashing into an iceberg, but rather like hoisting the iceberg on board and hoping the vessel can carry this enormous extra load.
Everyone will get subsidies! for producing “green” energy (including being paid for NOT putting it into the grid when there is no capacity), the energy-hungry heavy industri to compensate for high energy prices (although the EU is worrying about unfair competition) and now the coal-fired plants as well?
Everyone except ordinary consumers. Power shut-off when people can’t pay the bill is on the rise. The German state is not so rich that it can go on with this suicidal policy for long. But maybe for long enough to make extrication far more painful. Meanwile, there is a growing opposition also expressed in the not-so-loyal-anymore MSM, as reported in NoTricksZone:
“It’s a blunder with ugly consequences. The Energiewende, as it is now set up, is not making the air cleaner, but dirtier.”
http://notrickszone.com/2014/12/09/energiewende-takes-a-massive-blow-top-green-energy-proponent-concedes-blunder-with-ugly-consequences-huge-blow-to/
The GermanVice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel has said that the Energiewende is making Germany into a luaghing-stock. And he clearly dismisses any idea of shutting down coal-power:
“When the Greenpeace and others demand that all German coal power plants be shut down, that is hardly more than ‘mass disinformation of the people‘ which ‘will not lead to a single tonne of CO2 being saved for the global climate,’ Gabriel added.”
http://notrickszone.com/2014/11/09/federal-minister-of-economics-sigmar-gabriel-ending-coal-is-mass-disinformation-of-the-people-an-illusion/#sthash.HdSpHc7O.dpuf
But he seems to be wobbling all the time between flashes of insight into reality and walking the narrow correct path of his government’s energy policy, it must be very frustrating. Why did the Germans react so emotionally to Fukushima? Of course, the demonisation of nuclear is an old tradition in Germany, and the nuclear part of electricity production was never more than around 20%. Still, it must seem strange to them that Japan is now re-opening some nuclear plants. A tsunami in Bavaria is a bit far-fetched after all, except during the Oktoberfest beer party. And the French calmly go on with their nuclear energy sector, which produces ca. 75% of the country’s electricity.
Idealism, emotions and short-sightedness has never been a good combination in a long-term business like energy. When will the German ship of state sink below its Plimsoller line?

“Why did the Germans react so emotionally to Fukushima?”
It was a mass bombardment from the Media. You could only hear about the catastrophe from every possible aspect 24/7.
Germany was also suffering from the Chernobyl accident. We had radioactive dust for some months and could not use all crops or berries from the wild.
And as protest against nuclear power was a long issue, nobody could resist. Even conservatives changed their opinion. So the governement just followed the “Volkswille”.

ConTrari

Right, but still Germans reacted in a more extreme way than others. In my country, Norway, we also suffered from Chernobyl, and we are still using counter-measures against polluted grazing for the sheep in the mountains, but there is not the same hysteria.
The real catastrophe in Fukushima was the thousands that died from the natural disaster, and who are completely forgotten in Europe, where only the hyped-up nuclear threat got lasting attention. This is disrespectful and a shame.
No doubt you are right about nuclear protests being a long tradition in Germany, understandably also because Germany was the natural battlefield for a WW3 in Europe, which, if nuclear tactical weapons had been used, would have destroyed both the east and western part of the country. These Cold War fears are perhaps also an important sub-strata in the pervasive German abhorrence of anything nuclear.

Newsel

I believe what you are saying is the Nuc issue is a straw man argument. I would agree.

Resourceguy

The Greeks should be afraid, very afraid.

ConTrari

But the Greeks depend on putting the blame for everything bad on others, so if German support stops, it is all grist to their mill.

Gerry, England

Well the Greeks are about to have a snap election where the party currently leading the polls has a policy of Eurozone withdrawal so that should make things interesting.

Nik

Stuff happens when you are peddling BMWs and wind turbines at the same time.

Chip Javert

Hey! Hey!
Careful about picking on BMW: mine contains two German engineered & manufactured “wind turbines” (we call ’em turbos…).

Jeff

And you REALLY don’t want to get a bird stuck in one (or both) of them 🙂

Yeah, but BMW’s are now made in the US where power is cheaper.

Chip Javert

Not the 5 series

“Did Rome fall because of foolish political positions inappropriate to a changed world? Probably.”
Well, you see the Romans never noticed it happening because every day, all of the common people were in the stadium cheering for their favorite athletes, and every night, all of the leading politicians were at parties that strived to reach new levels of debauchery. Every office was for sale, and at one point 3 leading politicians were openly showering the Praetorian Guard with bags of gold, each trying to be the High Bidder in the competition to be the next Emperor.
Oh wait that does sound a lot like us…

asybot

There is something about history I seem to recall from somewhere…
Oh right it repeats it self.

Bjorn Ramstad

May this be the long desired “game-changer” which has benne wanted in vain for years?

Bjorn Ramstad

which har been…

Chip Javert

which has been

Pete in Cumbria UK

6 or 7 years ago, when I was a bright, keen & eager young thing and all excited about this Global Gassing lark, I bought myself a little windmill. In fact, I finished up 2 – my good lady-friend bought me one for Christmas and I got her a laptop, in sort-of exchange, as you do doncha?
I was ever so chuffed, thinking how clever I was and what a good deal I’d got.
I Could Not Have Been More Wrong.
Despite having a 35 mile clear vista into the prevailing wind, the thing sucked. It produced diddly squat electricity, I couldn’t even trust it to warm up a pot of water.
A weather bomb came past 15 months from new, it threw off its tail and blades (one of them went 120+ yards) and jumped down off its tower into 12″ of mud.
If only our elders, betters and political leaders had had such experience…
It was actually quite a good weather vane while it lasted, but That Was It. Period.

Jim Francisco

Good one Pete. We should not allow the windmills to be removed once it is realized how useless they are just to remind us how stupid we were to pay for the things in the first place.

My area has several small windmills, forever frozen and too costly to remove. I could have some fun and make a few bucks with some dynamite and det cord removing these eyesores for the owners; but I think they are more valuable as testiments to ideas that sound good in theory but failed in practice.

Jim Francisco

Paul, maybe you’re on to something there. A windmill removal service. Any ideas out there for a name?

“The Marines. When it absolutely has to be destroyed overnight.”

Tucci78

“Ve haff determined zat it iss impossible to vin a var against carbon dioxide, zo ve’re turning our focus to vage a vinnable var against anozzer plant food. Ve hereby declare var upon Miracle-Gro®!”

Getting themselves in dutch there, ain’t they?

asybot

As a Dutchman I resemble that remark.

Tucci78

At 3:18 PM on 10 December, asybot responded

As a Dutchman I resemble that remark.

to a comment that the Germans were getting themselves in dutch.
Gotta remember that when these United States had been receiving large influxes of immigrants from the Germanies in the 1800s (notably in the wake of Europe’s failed 1848 uprisings), the newcomers stated their national origins as “deutsche,” which naturally struck the Yankee ear as “dutch” (see the “Pennyslvania Dutch,” whose antecedents actually came to America from the Palatinate).
So the Americanism “getting in dutch” is very much a 19th Century reference to Germans, not Netherlanders.

Mac the Knife

As ye sow, so shall ye reap.

Non Nomen

Righto. And don’t forget to add some CO2 and warmth…

Mac the Knife

Check, NN!
Adding another split of douglas fir firewood to the wood stove right now, here in the Great NorthWet. I find the radiative and convective heating from natures renewable resources to be quite heart (and bun) warming!
And a Merry Christmas to ya!
Mac

Newsel

No singing… 🙂

Eddi Rebel

I always wonder how such a intelligent, diligent and educated people like the Germans have such a stupid politic cultur

ConTrari

The reason, I believe, is that below the intelligence and education lies an emotional strata, which can be whipped up by the right signals. Americans seem to have something of the same.

Every nation will get the government which it deserves – think about O Bummer… and beforehand Bush…

Newsel

I’ll take Bush any day…at least I know where his loyalties were established.

Thus the myth of German ingenuity and engineering expertise is crushed.

Don ‘t confuse engineering with politics

woodNfish

“At some point, when the populace will finally realize it has been fooled and plundered…”
You can’t fix stupid. Maybe we can send Gruber to Germany to tell them the truth too.

Chris Tollso

I’m not a green or something. Anyways I believe Germany is acting cleverly in the energy section. This guest opinion is welcome, but it is one-sided (as an opinion can maybe be). The other side of the story is that Germany is doing a revolution in the energy producing area, reducing their dependancy on external resources and big centralized power plants and trying to get a kind of energy that they can produce on their own ressources (sun and winds mainly) and which is much more decentral (with a whole lot of new options). If this is working out Germany will be several steps ahead of most of the other countries, also regarding the economic advantages of not needing external resources. Of course such a huge project is no easy task but up to now it works out quite well (if you mind the fact that at sunny days up to 70% of the energy in germany is produced by winds and solar cells already now and millions of people got to micro-energy-producers). Please notice that I did not use CO2 arguments at all here (and I’m quite sure Germany does not act on the base of AGW mainly but alot more on economical and strategical long-term considerations).

ConTrari

Just think about the brand-new coal plant Moorburg in Hamburg, the second largest city in Germany.
“Once commissioned, the Moorburg plant – with a capacity of 1640 MW – will generate approximately 11 terawatt hours (TWh), which equates to around 90 per cent of the electricity demand of the city of Hamburg.”
http://powerplants.vattenfall.com/powerplant/moorburg
Is this what you mean by “decentralized”? Wind and solar are extremely dependant upon constant back-up power, and there is no way that these energy sources can take over a large part of the country’s supply.
Meanwhile, brown-coal strip mining is making an unwelcome comeback in East Germany:
“Atterwasch may soon be gone. Vattenfall, a Swedish energy company, hopes to relocate the village and its residents in order to strip-mine the ground underneath for lignite, or “brown coal.””
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/energy/2014/02/140211-germany-plans-to-raze-towns-for-brown-coal/
Look at this chart to see how small wind and solar are in the total picture, not much more than hydro and biomass:
https://www.energy-charts.de/energy.htm

ren

Forgot about the Russian gas.

Non Nomen

Putin shuts down the western pipelines and sells it to the chinese, thanks to those idiots in the so called “EU”.

Solomon Green

Unfortunately the costs of this success story have pushed up energy prices to such a level that German industry can now only compete by ensuring that its EU competitors are forced to follow similar policies, hence making European industry, particularly energy intensive industry, uncompetitive in world markets.

Newsel

Essentially Germany now has its private energy providers shouting “uncle”, carving out unprofitable (non subsidized) business sectors which are to big to fail (read Government (Tax Payer) bailouts – GM anyone) hence the term “Energy Socialism”. Yep, if one considers the possibilities, Germany is being very clever. (Not)

robinedwards36

I suggest that you read the book by David MacKay “Sustainable Energy – without the hot air”, which will inform you of the elementary physics and also the economics of “sustainable” energy sources. MacKay used to be a high official in the British energy establishment, but is also a well qualified scientist. He shows just how much would be involved in attempting to rely on sustainables. In a nutshell, they can’t ever work in the real world.

mkelly

So in your explanation why would they shutter the nuclear plants? If they were going for reduced dependency of external energy keeping them would be a no brainier.
I think you need to redo your comment.

John F. Hultquist

Chris,
That sounds wonderful. But I question what happens on winter nights when the wind doesn’t blow. Some distance underground (~70 m.) the temperature is great for red wine and deeper still it begins to warm. Hope living underground works for you.

ConTrari

Well, you see, in Germany they drink more white wine and beer, which are best enjoyed at a much lower temperature than red wine. Power failure? Pop the Riesling!

Sweet Old Bob

Is there a link to back up the claim of “almost 70 % of the energy ” being supplied by wind and solar?
Color me very sceptical ……

ConTrari

No, these are exceptional hours of exceptional days. And remember that when greenies speak of renewable, they include also hydro and biomass, without specifying this, giving the impession that all renewable energy in Germany comes from wind and solar.
Frauenhofer has good info on this:
https://www.energy-charts.de/energy.htm

PainoMan

Even in Contrari’s chart linked below, I’ve not seen anything that points to more than 50% for a couple of hours on exceptionally good days.
So ConTrari, if as you say below that “No, these are exceptional hours of exceptional days,” then why did you first say, “if you mind the fact that at sunny days up to 70% of the energy in germany is produced by winds and solar cells already…” when you obviously know that this is not even close to the truth?

Akatsukami

ConTrari did not make that claim; concern troll Chris Tollso did.

” If this is working out Germany will be several steps ahead of most of the other countries, also regarding the economic advantages of not needing external resources. Of course such a huge project is no easy task but up to now it works out quite well”
No it doesn’t. If Germany were to continue with the same policy it will become a Polish province.

When I lived in Germany back in the late ’70s, it really didn’t strike me as a place conducive to solar energy, winters were cloudy for weeks on end. They were extremely chilly due to high humidity, rainy and cloudy weather. Presently our winters in North America remind me more of the ’70s than the ’90s, so my suspicion is Germany may be overly optimistic about solar energy durring their winters. I remember how frequently the Germans would apologise for the miserable dark, chilly wet, muddy weather.

Chris Trollso, thank you for your nice comments. I’m a German green somehow, but not a believer in AGW. But what they are doing makes no sense at all. Wind and solar power will produce up to 100% on some days, 5% on some others. With full power we have to sell electricity cheap or for free to our neighbors, because we cannot throttle our coal power plants.
Decentralized communities we have some few, but they are just small villages with biogas and wood chip power plants plus wind/solar. But this will not work on a large scale.

Actually you PAY them to take your excess power.
http://www.energypost.eu/case-allowing-negative-electricity-prices/
In 2011, there were over 200,000 3 minute plus power outages.
Problems with grid stability continue:
http://www.quora.com/Should-other-nations-follow-Germanys-lead-on-promoting-solar-power-1

Brian H

Through all of history progress has been powered by finding more compact and controllable sources of energy. Wind, solar and almost any “renewable” are the opposite of this, and doomed to fail expensively and catastrophically.

Grey Lensman

But when the wind dont blow you need a plant to cover it. Thus to generate a megawatt you need two plants, one wind, one something else. but then the efficiency of the something else is halved. So your total costs go through the roof. It really cannot be that hard to understand.

Pat Frank

[In] a personal phone call to Ms. Merkel on a Saturday, the CEO of E.ON, the largest German and European power producer, let it be known that the company had decided to split itself in two,…, etc.
This phone call, all by itself, ought to put to rest forever the notion that governments are slavishly in the pockets of big corporations.
Here we have a huge corporation threatening suicide because of relentless governmental oppression.
When governments are honest, corporations are good citizens. When they’re tyrannical (as now in Germany) corporations fall into line. When governments are corrupt, corporations grease palms to survive. And in socialist/fascist and crony-capitalist states, governments and corporations are indistinguishable.
We as people, not to say civil society itself, not to say science, thrive only under condition number 1.

So Germany is shutting down their nuclear capacity on one hand while whining about CO2 emissions and building coal-fired power plants on the other. The sheer idiocy of this is breathtaking. When one throws in the limited usefulness (or near-uselessness) and cost of solar and wind energies and rising energy bills into the mix, it goes beyond idiocy and into the realm of insanity.
For the rest of Europe and the wealthy industrialized world, one can’t help but wonder what will happen if Germany’s economy goes into an eventual tailspin because of this and what it will mean for the global economy if it does. We in the U.S. should consider ourselves fortunate that are not yet as near the edge of the energy and economic cliff as Germany appears to be. And it’s a long drop to the bottom. Obama sure seems to be pushing us there however with his policies that are causing the shutdown of both nuclear and coal-fired power plants in the U.S.
All of this represents what can happen when we humans allow our seriously faulty thinking, ideologies and belief systems to trump science, facts, clear level-headed thinking and reasoning. Those who demonstrate a problem with the latter (I believe) suffer from allowing their emotions of fear, hate and mistrust to the muddy the waters of and sabotage their ability to think and reason clearly. When they are large enough in number and agitate and yell loud enough to influence those in power, we all suffer the consequences.
To use a Star Trek analogy, I am not holding my breath waiting for the day when we humans ALL learn to think more like Mr. Spock and less like the emotional Dr. McCoy. Did Spock ever lose an argument with McCoy?
As I have said in a previous comment here at WUWT, wanting to make the world a better place is one thing. HOW one goes about doing it is something else entirely.

Rhoda R

Not a prediction, but the world-wide depression of 1929 started with a bank failure in Germany.

What history book you are using?… The wall street is not in Germany..

gbaikie

Delphi = wall street

mebbe

Creditanstalt was Austrian, if that’s what you’re referring to.

Economical Green Energy? Unicorns much?

Reblogged this on SasjaL and commented:
The EU CO2 reduction commitments are nothing but a economical kamikaze mission … Congrat’s China!

Warrick

E.On and E.Off

ConTrari

And who will buy the E.Off (fossil) part? Some hardnosed capitalists who are not so sensitive towards political niceties as the old main energy companies in the German market? Threatening to shut down coal plants if they don’t get more subsidies, because without coal Germany stops? There can be a lot of drama coming soon in the energy sector.

For me it’s like a thriller here in Germany: What’s next? Even the media have now different views and optional theories. If something changes they can say: We have mentioned this long before.
There are two theories spinning around:
a) the fossil E.ON. will only run with guarantees from the government or the government has to take it over.
b) nobody will buy the fossil (plus nuclear) E.ON, so the govenment will support it. Later the renewable E.ON will collapse bc. of missing income
Btw. Wind Power Plants from E.ON are only a tiny fraction of the renewable energy market and the general energy market. The subsidies for new renewable plants are declining steadily. I guess E.On renewable to E,on fossil is 1:10. So they cannot live from that alone.
It seems to be like a chess game: E.ON has taken now a step and is looking what’s next. It is always clever to have other irons in the fire.

Javert Chip

Obviously the German government will have to “nationalize” E.Off to keep the power flowing.
Rule of thumb: voter’s figuring out politicians have screwed up energy policy speeds up immeasurably once they notice their children are freezing to death.

Non Nomen

The very same ilk that bought greek bonds when they were cheaper than firewood. And they made good profit out of that. Ask Warren.

Louis

“With their naïve two-pronged approach to abolish nuclear and fossil fuel powered electricity generation in parallel, the German political leaders have maneuvered themselves into an impasse and now find themselves caught between a rock and a hard place.”
In today’s world, it seems that everything successful gets demonized and shutdown, while everything that is unproven, or has actually failed, gets hailed as a solution for the future. What is it about people on the left that always seems to cause them to see success as a problem and failure as the solution? It is a type of upside-down thinking that is totally foreign to me.

Joe Crawford

“With their naïve two-pronged approach to abolish nuclear and fossil fuel powered electricity generation in parallel, the German political leaders have maneuvered themselves into an impasse and now find themselves caught between a rock and a hard place.”
It’s a shame that citizens have to suffer badly for the mistakes of their elected leaders, but they did elected ’em. I wonder how many ‘greens’ are retired and living on limited pensions where a 25%-50% increase in the cost of electricity means the choice between eating or freezing. Didn’t England attribute 20k to 30k deaths last winter to increased energy costs?
Even though we’re on the same track, hopefully, we’re still far enough behind that we can avoid the train wreck that seems imminent for at least parts of Europe. Sometimes it’s nice to have leaders you don’t have to follow.

It’s not so bad in Germany. The German social insurance system has a higher level as e.g. ObamaCare. And nobody will freeze or starve as long he gets the Hartz 4 payments. But there are some who are too proud or unwilling to ask for it, and they have problems.

It will take more such train wrecks (UK and California grid imstability from renewables without adequate backup are good candidates) to put the lie to renewable electricity. That plus the pause are putting the warmunists into quite a tither. The shrillness is increasing.
Lima isn’t going well. No $100 billion per year ‘trivial’ ponied up to the Green Climate Fund. No binding commitment language as EU wanted. China refuses audit inspections. India won’t agree to anything except taking its share of the non-existent $100 billion. Another Copenhagen coming.
What are those poor UN bureaucrats to do? They are as effective at this as they have been with Syrian chemical weapons, Bosnian ethnic cleansing, and the WHO evola response.

Rud, Lima is going to plan. Surely the EU knew the other players wouldn’t agree on anything workable. Now they can return home and blame China, India, and the USA.

ConTrari
Newsel

“What are those poor UN bureaucrats to do?” Hopefully they have to dig into their own pockets for the next boondoggle and stop having the tax payer funding their BS conferences that achieve SFxA.

Leon Brozyna

Shades of Atlas Shrugged … after years of being damned for being an evil producer of dirty energy, E.ON just decided to quit being evil … and if the rest of the industry follows suit as suggested, the Germans will find that they’ve committed economic suicide.

Newsel

Amen….

JoePilot1

The good news is, other nations can watch and learn, and hopefully even prevent this silliness on a grand scale.

Newsel

The only way to avoid going down the same road is to convince your US Rep that going down this same road is economic suicide. Then you have this no brainer idiot Republican (RINO). Seriously, not even in power yet and they are about to commit Hari Kari…..are they really that dumb?
http://www.salon.com/2014/12/09/house_republican_to_introduce_bill_acknowledging_the_reality_of_climate_change/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seppuku

Do you really think so.<:o)

Newsel

Time will tell but I am 50:50 on this one..stupid is as stupid does. But I did email my US Rep just in case.

1. The Germans dominate the unelected, unaccountable European Commission of the European Union. Merkel appointed the EU Commissioner, Juncker.
2. European countries are shutting down their power sources because of directives from the EU. For example, France is shutting down its nuclear, and England its coal.
3. Now Germany is using coal again.
THEREFORE: European countries will be reliant on purchasing electricity from Germany and gas from Russia.

Looks like a certain generation just reversed everything its parents accomplished.
And now they are grooming the next generation for their crimes, using environmental science to reverse advances in energy, shipping, transportation, and agriculture.
Pretty cold if you ask me.

mebbe

The parents of Merkel’s generation did accomplish a bunch, it’s true, but first, they entirely trashed the joint.

Hi mebbe, however ineptly and clumsily, I was referring to the Baby Boomer Generation. My thinkin is this: the Greatest Generation arrested Germany’s attempt to dominate Europe, and contained Russian expansion. Their children have now reversed their work, and are about to reverse advances in agriculture, energy, and transportation.

Robuk

Seems like 1940`s Germany, for some reason the German population always have blind faith in their leaders.
http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/solar-subsidy-sinkhole-re-evaluating-germany-s-blind-faith-in-the-sun-a-809439.html

Non Nomen

Just the goose-stepping ceased.

Alx

It’s amazing what $half a trillion can’t buy you now a days.
On the other hand you could say $half-trillion is what it costs to damage a robust national economy.

Climate Pete

Fred Mueller presents a very distorted picture of the CO2 emissions from German power production. Sure the power produced from coal and lignite which are heavy emitters of CO2 went up by 7.2 TWh between 2012 and 2013 (http://www.ise.fraunhofer.de/en/downloads-englisch/pdf-files-englisch/news/electricity-production-from-solar-and-wind-in-germany-in-2013.pdf slide 6).
But in 2014 year to date the 11 month comparison with the same period of 2013 shows a reduction of 15.3 TW of coal and lignite generation (http://www.ise.fraunhofer.de/en/downloads-englisch/pdf-files-englisch/data-nivc-/electricity-production-from-solar-and-wind-in-germany-2014.pdf slide 5). And the gas generation has gone down in both 2013 and 2014 by 10.5 TWh and 6.5 TWh respectively.
In other words the 2013 increase in generation from coal was a blip caused by timing factors and has been dramatically reversed in 2014.
Further, current German day-ahead spot power prices are at their lowest for some time – and frequently lower than USA spot power prices. See http://www.renewablesinternational.net/german-day-ahead-power-prices-lowest-since-2002/150/537/81848/ and http://www.eia.gov/electricity/wholesale/xls/ice_electric-2014.xls. Such German spot power prices do not include taxes or the renewables subsidy.
Neither does most German industry pay the renewables subsidy, which is restricted to consumers and therefore 2.5x larger than it would be if everyone paid it.
Germany may well just miss its challenging 2020 targets of a 40% CO2 emission – getting rid of both nuclear and coal at the same time would always be very difficult – although they could readily hit them with a small delay in nuclear shutdowns. But it is still on a rapidly decreasing trend of CO2 emissions and the Frauenhofer reports above show there is plenty of scope for reducing CO2 emissions with further wind and solar installations. And sure, this would mean making some “capacity” payments to coal and gas generators over and above the “energy units” payments.
Oh, and by the way, the recent average German grid reliability has been excellent – around 16 minutes per customer per year outage over the last 5 years compared with hours for the USA grids.

ConTrari

“Oh, and by the way, the recent average German grid reliability has been excellent – around 16 minutes per customer per year outage over the last 5 years compared with hours for the USA grids.”
Yes, becuse when a sudden large solar and wind power production threatens to collapse the grid, the producers are paid full price to keep it off the grid. Just throwing it away. What a great energy policy.

Scott Basinger

In the meantime, 300,000k people per year are having their power cut off because of extremely high electricity prices.
http://www.n-tv.de/politik/Verbaende-warnen-vor-Energiearmut-article12685471.html#sthash.E4rWuvRq.dpuf
Yeah, who cares about them, anyways?

Scott Basinger

*300k

phlogiston

Pete
So you’r saying that Germany has built 23 new coal power stations and coal generation is falling? There’s some creative accounting going on here.

Fred F. Mueller

Pete,
interesting you cite mostly deep-green sources, such as solar system research oriented ISE. And while 2014 with its warmer weather might eventually result in a small downward glitch in the coal burning records, wait for 2015 when the next nuclear plant will go offline. We will see nearly 100 TWh of nuclear power generation taken off the grid in the next few years. I followed the stats for German CO2 emissions quite closely for the last 10 – 15 years, both for power generation and in general, and the graph has stopped fallling in 2009 and has been heading upwards for the past 5 years. (786 mill. tons CO2 in 2009, 834 mill. tons 2013). A glitch isn’t a trend. Talking about a “rapidly decreasing trend of CO2 emissions” in Germany seems “slightly” wrong to me, see http://de.statista.com/statistik/daten/studie/2275/umfrage/hoehe-der-co2-emissionen-in-deutschland-seit-1990/

ralfellis

Interesting. But plan b. seems like political suicide:
b. Plans to rein in the soaring price of electric power prices will be abandoned.
The common man may like the sound of emissions-free energy as much as anyone else, but when he has no food on the table because energy prices have tripled, revolution will stalk the land. And the first to lose her head, will be Merkel.
Ralph

The EU has its own anthem, flag, and military. Europeans themselves are disarmed.

Robertvd

I am European and I hate the EU.

Alba

There used to be a scientific consensus. The American Association of Petroleum Geologists supported it. The president of the American Philosophical Society rejected an alternative view.
But now?
http://mentalfloss.com/article/60481/how-one-womans-discovery-shook-foundations-geology

Windsong

I know it won’t happen, but I sincerely wish the governor of Washington State would read this article. One gets the impression that he thinks the German approach is a great way forward for his state.

The Germans are setting up a massive carbon-chassis and electric car industry, powered by our Grand Coulee Dam, in Washington. Cheep energy, taken from our grid, to support their future electric car mandates.

BMWs are pricy, ranging from $30,000 to $105,000. Known for its cutting edge technology, one of its new innovations is using carbon fiber to replace the metal on the outer layers of its cars.
Why carbon fiber? It helps car manufacturers reduce the weight to meet tougher auto emission and mileage standards. Using carbon fiber is especially important as car makers attempt to extend the range of electric autos and for hybrids needing to add more miles per gallon.
The Oak Ridge National Laboratory has determined that trimming a car’s weight by 10 percent improves mileage by 7 percent. That means when carbon fiber becomes affordable, its use will spread through three diverse auto categories: sports cars perpetually hungry for weight savings, hybrids and electric vehicles burdened with heavy batteries. Mass-produced models will need this technology to meet the 54.5-mpg U.S. mileage standard by 2025.”

Newsel

For this to happen “the people” vehicles have to be priced, relatively speaking, as you would a 787 Dreamliner. Mass production at a price that equates to affordable (Model T terminology) is impossible with current CF technology.

When I was young I had the largest Audi available: The Audi 100 GL weighing 1100 kg empty, made out of steel. Now the largest Audi is made our of lightweight aluminium. Weighing 2500 kg empty. That’s progress!

Michael C. Roberts

Windsong – As I have posted before regarding Jay “I Will Impose a Carbon Tax on my Watch” Inslee – I wish it would be so, as well….but – what is not to like about a Mexican-to-Canadian-border, homogeneous, left-leaning, carbon-taxing, vehicle-use-taxing-by-the-mile-via-GPS-real-time-data-logger society (sarcasm intended, but sadly this may very well become the reality – sooner than later).
See: http://www.thenewstribune.com/2014/12/09/3533212/pay-by-mile-could-be-tested-on.html#
Also: http://www.thenewstribune.com/2014/12/09/3533114/inslee-budget-plan-is-in-the-works.html#
Read them and weep, my friends…Moving to Texas starts to become much more appealing….The Hill Country is kinda nice I hear….

Mac the Knife

Windsong,
Unless the article contained ‘pop out’ characters and scenes to illustrate the green agenda… or ‘acidification of the oceans’, it would not hold Jay Inslee’s attention for even a minute.

Neo

It’s ‘sink or swim’ time.
I give odds to sink