AEMO: Replacing Coal with Renewables will Cause Blackouts

de-icing-wind-turbine

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

The Australian Energy Market Operator, the government body responsible for ensuring the stability of Australia’s energy supply, has issued a stark warning that closure of coal plants will dramatically increase the risk of widespread blackouts – that building additional renewable capacity will not compensate for the loss of coal capacity.

MEDIA RELEASE

THURSDAY, 11 August 2016

Strategic, efficient investment required to support Australia’s energy transformation

The Australian Energy Market Operator’s (AEMO) 2016 Electricity Statement of Opportunities (ESOO) report released today illustrates the growing importance of network and non-network developments to securely manage an evolving, lower carbon electricity generation future.

The 2016 ESOO provides National Electricity Market (NEM) participants, investors, and policy-makers with a projected 10-year outlook to 2025-26 of supply adequacy under a number of scenarios, and this year further generation withdrawals have been modelled in response to the COP21 emission abatement commitment1.

“As the NEM generation mix continues to keep pace with new technology and policy changes, future supply adequacy will depend on the availability and capability of new supply options providing electricity services when needed,” said AEMO Chief Operating Officer Mike Cleary.

From the information provided by industry, and assuming no additional generation withdrawals to occur between now and 2025-26, the only projected supply shortfall in the 2016 ESOO occurs towards the end of the outlook period in New South Wales.

“The 2015 ESOO identified New South Wales (NSW), South Australia and Victoria as potentially being at risk of breaching the reliability standard at various points over the next decade. The latest information suggesting only a shortfall in NSW in 2025-26 takes into account a reduction in demand forecasts, and illustrates a market response with some planned plant withdrawals deferred and an additional 537 MW of wind generation capacity announced,” said Mr Cleary.

However, additional to the information already announced by market participants, AEMO has modelled scenarios that assume the COP21 commitment is achieved, investigating the impact of potential, but not announced, generation withdrawals to meet the electricity sector target agreed by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) Energy Council.

AEMO has modelled the impact of withdrawing a further 1,360 MW of coal-fired generation capacity to meet the COP21 commitment under AEMO’s neutral scenario, with results suggesting potential reliability breaches occurring in South Australia from 2019-20, and New South Wales and Victoria from 2025 onwards.

“These breaches would most likely occur when demand is high (usually between 3-8pm), coinciding with low wind and rooftop photovoltaic (PV) generation, and low levels of electricity supply imported from neighbouring regions.

“In this scenario, the majority of coal-fired generation withdrawals are assumed to come from Victoria, which would reduce that State’s generation output to support South Australia and New South Wales via the interconnected network,” said Mr Cleary.

The 2016 ESOO report outlines the importance of maintaining power system security during this period of rapid transformation, and with the potential withdrawal of coal-fired generation across the NEM, a number of support services will need to be provided by other resources.

“The secure operation of the NEM’s 40,000 km transmission network – which transports generated electricity to demand points – is reliant on support services that manage the rate of change of frequency and system restart services.

“AEMO is signalling potential future supply gaps in providing these important stability services, gaps which could be met through prospective new forms of electricity generation, or alternative technologies.”

“To maintain a secure electricity supply demand balance during peak demand periods, AEMO is working closely with industry to identify both network and non-network developments. Possible solutions could include an increased interconnection across NEM regions, battery storage, and demand side management services,” said Mr Cleary.

AEMO’s 2016 ESOO follows the recent release of the 2016 National Electricity Forecasting Report, which looks at forecast electricity demand trends over a 20-year horizon. The ESOO analyses these demand trends against future generation availability to identify any potential breaches of the NEM reliability standard, which requires that no more than 0.002% of annual operational electricity consumption should go unserved for any region in any year.

AEMO will be hosting a roadshow for industry participants to critically examine and discuss options to maintain the high security and reliability standards that most Australians have become accustomed.

Ends

2016 ESOO scenario reference table

a) A centralised source for electricity refers to the national electricity transmission grid.

b) “Engagement” refers to the extent to which consumers proactively exercise choice of energy sources

and usage patterns.

For more information:

AEMO Media

Mobile: 0409 382 121

Email: media@aemo.com.au

Read more: http://www.aemo.com.au/Media-Centre/Strategic-efficient-investment-required-to-support-Australias-energy-transformation

This warning confirms my assertion in a previous post that South Australia cannot provide stable electricity grid supply without access to Victorian coal power, supplied via the interstate interconnector. South Australian political pretensions to renewable policy success are nonsense.

The report leaves open the possibility that more battery capacity, massive investment in more interconnectors, or supply management might reduce instability.

In my opinion arguing that more connectedness will lead to stability doesn’t pass the smell test.

Imagine if all the interconnections anyone could want were available. Imagine say half of Australia was covered in clouds. The solar arrays in the sunny parts of Australia would have to produce not only enough power for local needs, they would also have to produce enough power to supply the parts of Australia which weren’t able to carry their own load.

Carry the game a little further. Say 4/5 of Australia was covered in clouds. Or 7/8 of Australia was covered in clouds.

As you explore increasingly unlikely but still very possible adverse conditions, you quickly reach a point where a significant chunk of Australia would have to be covered in expensive renewable installations, to provide the massive supply overcapacity required to achieve partial stability through interconnectedness.

Batteries are also not a real solution, at least with today’s technology. Storage systems such as organic redox batteries, which in theory might one day provide energy storage on the scale required, are still very much a laboratory toy.

The third possible solution, “supply management” – South Australians have already had a taste of that. I doubt a “supply management” policy of deliberately encouraging spot power prices to spike up to $14 / KWh when renewable generation fails will attract many supporters.

Of course, the obvious solution is to keep the coal generators running – but this would require an outbreak of political common sense.

Advertisements

189 thoughts on “AEMO: Replacing Coal with Renewables will Cause Blackouts

  1. An actual government agency is saying stuff that has been said on this site for years and years?? Is this the beginning of the end?
    Eugene WR Gallun

    • Not quite. NSW has the best supply at present from its coal power plants. This load of codswallop assumes that NSW is going to abandon its reliable cheap supply of electricity to depend on something else.
      Won’t happen!

      • Wait until an incoming Labor government needs to buy votes from the Green Blob. I assure you it will happen, and quite soon.

      • At least Australia does not have to worry about severe winters like most countries in the West.
        It is inevitable blind adherence to Green Blob strategies is going to end in tears, with hundreds of thousands dying from hypothermia the next time there is a severe winter in some countries (step forward the UK) in the Northern Hemisphere.

      • It happened in Ontario, where the greens closed down 2 thermal coal plants – these plants were in the process of being upgraded to better contend with pollution, but that was not good enough for the Liberals, who got their advice from certain green organizations. Now the same advisor to the Ontario Liberals is an advisor to the Liberal PM in Ottawa and he has deep connections to the greens.
        It is noted also that the Green party has decided to go anti-Israel in Canada.

    • I thought the Einstein quote was, in full:
      “Only two things are infinite; the universe and human stupidity. And I’m not even sure about the universe.”
      Auto – thinking it should have been, anyway . . . . . .
      Reminds me of the Company that produced Idiot-Proof Gizmos.
      Turned out they hadn’t realised that the Universe is building bigger and better idiots.

      • There is an old Navy saying along those lines: “You can build it idiot proof but you can’t build it sailor proof”
        Works for navies of all nations.

      • auto; There’s another saying “You Can’t Fix Stupid” , cAGW is the very definition of “Stupid”. Think Donald Drumpf, that man really can’t be fixed, along with cAGW. I’m desperately looking for hope and the only glimmer of intelligence I’m clinging to is the new British P.M.

  2. By 2020, the Landscheidt Mini-IceAge will be so obvious that any references to “Carbon” controlling weather will be met with Skepticism. (Ironically). Instead, ALL sources of energy and energy conservation will be required to provide heating and food production in a deadly cold environment through 2050. 2030 – 2040 could be the coldest. See Pauulitely.com for all the details.

  3. power will fail
    heads will roll
    cronies will be installed
    excuses will be common currency
    dependent people will be screwed blue.
    look to venezuela to see how bad it can get before anybody really says NO and means it.

    • How right you are Gnomish. Despite years of increasing misery it is only recently that Venezuelan’s have woken up to the fact that no government can go on supplying free stuff. Despite that realisation, President Maduro intends to cling onto power even if it means the total destruction of the country. Socialism at its finest.

      • Unfortunately, no matter how bad it gets, there will always be a significant minority who will remain convinced that socialism can work. It’s just being sabotaged by moneyed interests who don’t want to pay their fair share.
        In the US, the top 10% of earners earn approximately 30% of all the income, but pay about 70% of all taxes.
        Yet Hillary has a commercial out proclaiming that she is going to make the rich pay their fair share.

  4. Everyone should read (or re-read, as I did recently after 40 odd years) Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged. She wrote this far-sighted novel in the 1950s, and predicted with uncanny prescience this sort of nonsense, calling the government apparatchicks who promoted (no – mandated and enforced) this kind of bollocks ‘the looters’. An apt description! .

    • Actually the 3 movie series, although plagued by flaws (and the fact that the 2nd movie is an entirely different cast), are still pretty good at getting the gist of the story for those who are intimidated by the sheer size of the novel.
      A good try, considering that “Hollywood” was unlikely to bankroll or produce a story that they consider subversive and poisonous.

    • BfT,
      I read Atlas Shrugged again six months ago after 50-year hiatus, when I read it twice in the summer of 1966. The book is far more chilling today.

    • “Everyone should read (or re-read, as I did recently after 40 odd years) Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged.”
      I read it in the late ’60s. I found it ponderous, bloated, and preachy, but having previously read about the woes of China, the Soviet Union, and Eastern Europe, I also found the villains all too plausible. With time, Rand’s scenario has come to seem almost clairvoyant. The IPCC should have such predictive skill! 🙂
      I liked Part 1 of the film series, probably because even in the novel I saw Hank Rearden as a more believable character than John Galt (in my career, I’ve actually worked for at least three Rearden-like entrepreneurs, but no Galts).
      Favorite line from the film:
      Larkin: They say you’re intractable, you’re ruthless, your only goal is to make money.
      Rearden: My only goal IS to make money.

    • Thanks for reminding us about one of the most influential books of the 20th Century. It may be long, but Ayn Rand has a great deal to explain. The 60 pages of the ‘radio broadcast’ towards the end of Atlas Shrugged, in my view, summarizes her philosophy very well.

    • Yes griff, alternative….. but not appropriate; again you demonstrate your lack of knowledge in energy matters.
      I know you’re not a complete idiot, you still have bits missing.

    • If some people want to cut themselves off from the grid and rely on unsubsidised solar panels and unsubsidised batteries — good for them — that’s freedom of choice in a free open un-distorted market.

      • Yeah but the greenies hardly ever practice what they preach. The primitive life is for anyone but them.

      • Yes, doable provided you’re willing to prioritize. There’s no sunlight at night, so what do you do when there’s also no wind – quite a common occurrence. You have to select which essential services to receive the scarce electricity from the few remaining coal/gas fired power stations. At some stage, unless you’re willing to build new ones, you’ll be deciding which hospitals have more important patients, to receive the few remaining volts.

      • There’s a guy in South Africa who’s gone off the grid in a purpose built house. With at least one wind-driven generator, the roof covered with photo-electric panels, and a well. And a ROOM FULL OF BATTERIES! Apparently doing all of this more than doubled the cost of the house. And he still has to buy petrol for his car and pick-up truck. So it CAN be done, but at what cost?

    • Griff, from your link
      ‘Indeed, South Australia’s experiment – as premier Jay Weatherill has described it – in pursuing the world’ highest level of wind and solar generation is rapidly evolving into a whole bunch of world-leading projects.
      These include AGL’s (described the world’s biggest virtual power plant)’
      I am sure that virtual energy will one day take over the world. /sarc

      • “World leading” = equals panic stricken search for solutions because we plunged of the renewables cliff without a real plan for a reliable overall system. Strangely smugness, rainbows and unicorns just didnt deliver.

      • Anyone who has tried to get their vehicle to start in cold weather (or with no electrics) will know exactly how long a battery will last :¬)

    • The advent of aliens from Beta Reticuli teaching us how to make tabletop fusion generators making energy too cheap to meter will also massively reduce the evening peak load. But planning on the assumption that either will happen would be stupid. The potential market for reaelly good batteries is *amazing*. I for one would like to be able to run my laptop untethered for days at a time. If it was easy to make really good batteries, we’d already have them.

    • All well and good Griff but you are still dependent on future developments with dewy eyed optimism that battery technology arrives, is effective, is affordable. What do you suggest people do in the meantime? buy candles and firewood? In my country one state has gone down the large scale wind route and is now dependent on the neighbouring coal fired state whenever the wind she dont blow. I’m not sure just smiling and saying batteries are coming is a good enough answer.

    • Griff, not a dollar sign in sight in the article. As a mechanical engineer by training and as an South Australia paying the highest electricity bills in the developed world that article leaves me cold and enraged. This is a socialist experiment which they were not given licence to conduct on the people of SA. Money doesn’t enter the socialists’ equations. It is just so easy to spend other peoples’ money and let someone else wear the blame in a few years time.

    • this is ‘egriff’ who used to haunt the environment pages of the Daily Telegraph, till they fired all their environmental journalists because the alternative energy companies weren’t prepared to pay for adverts any more.
      he is a troll, and probably a paid one, because his denial of facts is simply too awesome for even an idiot.

    • Yeah, let me know when the thing has produced more power than it took to build and maintain it – if ever. How people think that power plants which have a negative EROI are a good idea, I don’t have a clue.

      • Not forgetting the amount of gas it needs to melt the salt before the solar bit can do its thing.
        If it’s anything like Ivanpah, that will be a very significant proportion of the amount of electricity it ends up generating.
        Until it self-immolates, of course.
        Then there is the small matter of the number of birds it incinerates, not as that will bother a rabid Watermelon like Apple, after all, he’s out to ‘Save the World™’, so that’s OK.

      • Every wind-turbine has to provide enough energy to “replicate itself” before producing actual useful power. Think about it – each one has to produce enough power to mine the raw materials to manufacture the actual wind turbine and generator, concrete for the anchor and transport all of that and erect it – otherwise you are only using more oil, gas and coal. Only then will a turbine produce useful power.

      • Norbert Twether said:
        “Every wind-turbine has to provide enough energy to “replicate itself” before producing actual useful power. Think about it – each one has to produce enough power to mine the raw materials to manufacture the actual wind turbine and generator, concrete for the anchor and transport all of that and erect it – otherwise you are only using more oil, gas and coal. Only then will a turbine produce useful power.”
        OK, well, don’t leave us guessing. What are the actual figures?

  5. Leonidas of Rhodes won total of 12 individual Olympic crowns in the four Olympiads from 164 BC to 152 BC.
    Has Michael Phelps beaten this ancient record yet?
    if so (or when), Mr. Phelps should be declared the best athlete/sportsman of all times !

    • At this moment, Michael Phelps has tied with Leonidas record 12 individual wins, but has the overall record for wins with 21 so far, when team events are included. He may yet surpass Leonidas record, as he has advanced to the final race in one more event and has heat races in two more individual events.

      • correction: Michael Phelps has advanced to the finals in one event- the 200 meter individual medley but has heat races remaining for just one more event, the 100 meter butterfly. Two more chances to beat Leonidas of Rhodes’ ancient record.

  6. Wind Turbines, alone, cannot act as the essential base load units needed when base load units are being replaced, and need necessary 100% Gas Turbine Standby’s to meet power demands during typical no/low wind conditions. You also have to add in the necessary massive additional cost of enhanced and additional Power Transmission and Control Works needed to connect the remote WT’s to areas of actual Power Demand together with the costs, and even subsidies needed, for having to operate these Gas Turbines inefficiently as standby units. These total costs need to be compared with the total costs of the same capacity of Gas Turbines acting alone as base load units.
    The result of this proper professional engineering investment analysis is a no brainer: the WT/GT/Power Line System’s power is, and always will be, massively more expensive than the same capacity of GT’s acting alone as base load units, even when allowing for savings of the costs of measures needed in the future – if any, to remedy the effects of CO2 increases. This is regardless of how much money is spent on R&D in any attempt to improve on the massive inbuilt engineering inefficiencies of WT’s and within WT/GT standby Total Windfarm Systems.
    WT supporters and suppliers never mention the minimal CO2 savings provided by WT’s, even supposing that was a critical requirement. This results from the standby GT’s, with their own CO2 emissions, generating at least 70-75% of the base load Wind Farm Total System’s power output. The fuel and CO2 savings compared to GT’s acting as base load units are therefore only 25-30% at most!
    We now have the ridiculous and obscene situation in the UK where WT power is given priority use and provided with massive subsidies. Subsidies are then needed by the GT standby supplier/operators to cover their increased costs of supplying and operating GT’s as standby’s operating way off optimum efficiency loading to meet the WT’s ever varying shortfall in power compared to current power demands.
    There is increasing talk of using state of the art, more efficient batteries to provide a WT system not needing GT standby’s and emitting zero CO2, but this is still a pipe dream, even if such a new high capacity battery big enough to accommodate individual domestic, commercial and industrial power demands was available. All the batteries do is make certain that all power generated by the WT’s can be used when needed, but based on the above figures, replacing a 100 units capacity of a Coal Fired or Gas Fired Power Plant would require 400 units of WT capacity – a massive increase. Regardless of this monstrous and grossly over-expensive installed capacity, there would be very extended periods when there is very low/no wind at all – particularly in cold winter periods of maximum power demand. The batteries would have to have an enormous storage capacity to accommodate such prolonged no wind periods, i.e. 100% GT standby’s would still be needed as well as the 400% WT’s replacing 100% CFPS’s and GTPS’s, and with the GT standby ponly producing minimum amounts of its annual capacity, i.e. operating even far less efficiently and at far higher subsidised low annual outputs.
    You just couldn’t dream up a more idiotic and crazy situation. Yet the politicians here still wonder why our steel industry and many other strategic industries are losing the battle with foreign competitors, exports are failing and why our power costs, affecting all our other costs, keep rising.
    We desperately need professional engineers in Government and the HOC to ensure that such proper infrastructure works cost benefit analyses are carried out! The UK Professional Engineering Institutions also have a great deal to answer for in not only condoning, but even promoting, this failing over-expensive infrastructure situation – totally contrary to their Charters which expressly require them to work in the interests of the UK and UK citizens.

  7. Eric Worrall said: “AEMO: Replacing Coal with Renewables will Cause Blackouts”
    Actually, that isn’t what they said.
    “future supply adequacy will depend on the availability and capability of new supply options providing electricity services when needed,”
    That’s not the same thing, regardless of your position on this issue.

    • The sentence you quoted roughly translates to “we need dispatchable power”, which wind and solar are not. When they talk about a “reliability breach”, which they mention more than once, they are talking about potential blackouts. So yes, if you read between the lines the headline is an accurate summary.

      • Saying “we need a plan and systems to deal with this” isn’t the same thing as saying “this can’t be made to work”. “Potential blackouts if we don’t come up with a plan” isn’t the same thing as “We will have blackouts”

    • “future supply adequacy will depend on the availability and capability of new supply options providing electricity services when needed,”
      AKA thermal generating plant, burning fossil fuels.

  8. Blackout.
    New term needed. Blackout is too finite. Yeah, the power is out, but it will be back on in an hour or two. Maybe tomorrow.
    Need a term that means it may not be back on for weeks.
    Meanwhile, the populace will buy, install, and use their own generators, as the power utility fails to meet its basic objective, as their rates skyrocket to pay for all the absurd investment. Living off the grid will become common.

  9. South Australia makes some interesting case studies about general energy policy. A few points:
    1. It has the largest uranium, and possibly the largest mineral deposit, in the world, the Olympic Dam (U-Cu-Au-Ag) Mine. It has at least 100-200 years left of resources. It is an IOCG (iron oxide copper gold) style deposit, that when found was the first major deposit of this style known in the world. Plans to expand the mine recently have been shelved partly due to unreliable energy supply from the state’s focus on renewables. So a major source of world U is currently dependent on ideologically -driven renewable energy policies.
    There are other significant U, Cu, Au mines and gas fields. Some estimates also quote very large amounts of potentially recoverable shale gas resources. BP is also currently in the process of applying to drill deep offshore oil wells.
    2. The state is the driest in Australia, most of which is desert. It gets lots of wind and solar energy, but still can’t make these produce reliable base load power. Most of the renewable energy policies and developments are funded by profits from the state’s mineral and fossil fuel resources.
    3. Plans to utilise ‘hot rock’ energy (whereby water is pumped deep underground to tap into ‘hotter’ rocks kilometres beneath the surface, before returning to the surface and utilizing the heat energy) have so far not met with success. South Australia has some high heat gradients, with abundant amounts of relatively radioactive granites which produce background heat which has been modelled to potentially be able to supply significant amounts of electricity using ‘hot rock’ technology, but so far these plans haven’t met with success.
    4. The state has also been studied on several occasions for potential nuclear waste storage sites, since it is mostly uninhabited, flat, and seismically stable. Developing various carbon capture technologies using available nuclear energy largely hasn’t been discussed. The Australian Federal government policy is largely anti-nuclear, although exceptions and occasional policy changes do occur within individual states.
    Ideologically, a priority/funding debate between fossil fuels, U, as well as copper-gold and other minerals plays out against various renewables largely within urbanised circles, since there is only a relatively small population within the mostly desert state that doesn’t live within urbanised areas. It is significant that the state derives a relatively high proportion of its wealth from minerals and fossil fuels, that are in sparsely inhabited, and therefore areas with few votes and little representation.

    • Thingodonta. “The state has also been studied on several occasions for potential nuclear waste storage sites, since it is mostly uninhabited, flat, and seismically stable. ”
      I read somewhere that Australia has 2/3 of the world’s known reserves of uranium. It seems to me if Australia provided a storage place for the radioactive waste that a major concern for nuclear power plants would be removed.

    • “with abundant amounts of relatively radioactive granites…”
      So lots and lots of lovely radon in the hot water…

  10. AEMO: Replacing Coal with Renewables will Cause Blackouts

    Lots of diesel generators are expected to be installed in residential and business districts, so not only costs will skyrocket, but pollution as well.
    I am not a firm believer in the Law of Unintended Consequences. No one can be stupid enough to overlook it in advance, therefore increasing pollution must be welcome by those responsible for fighting coal.
    One can only wonder why.

    • Berényi Péter August 11, 2016 at 4:01 am

      Lots of diesel generators are expected to be installed in residential and business districts, so not only costs will skyrocket, but pollution as well.
      […] No one can be stupid enough to overlook it in advance, […]

      Are you sure about that?
      However, if you are correct, it’s not the pollution that concerns the powers that be. Rather, it’s how to steer the contracts for diesel generators to the corporations they own or will get a kickback from without it being too obvious that the legislator or bureaucrat will benefit personally.

      • Diesel generators are used at large “server farms” (computer-related data storage systems) to keep things going when grid electrons are not available. In the case in the link below the grid is supplied by hydro from the Columbia River of Washington State. The story is four years old. Washington State imports some coal produced electricity although the current government intends to stop doing so. Solar is a poor choice here, wind is used, but it doesn’t always blow. [Link at the bottom shows a 5 minute chart of power for a big swath of Oregon & WA.]
        http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/24/technology/data-centers-in-rural-washington-state-gobble-power.html
        But for some in Quincy, the gee-whiz factor of such a prominent high-tech neighbor wore off quickly. First, a citizens group initiated a legal challenge over pollution from some of nearly 40 giant diesel generators that Microsoft’s facility — near an elementary school — is allowed to use for backup power.
        ————–Bonneville Power Administration (BPA)
        … at the moment, no wind
        http://transmission.bpa.gov/business/operations/wind/baltwg.aspx

    • Individuals buying generators to generate their own electricity? I’m sure the politicians can come up with some regulations to “fix” that.

      • Leave it to the H & S boys & girls in the EU, they will come up with installationsnot being properly installedtothe right safety specs & therefore we must all employ electricians, & only those certified by the EU!

      • Patrick B,
        I have used my generator 10 times in the last two years due to outages caused by windturbines. Those previous years ? not much ( literally maybe 6 times in 15 yrs of owning a generator)
        But, you can have a generator and if you have no gasoline, no generator.

  11. The peak demand drop in the middle of the day is because you have no factories and jobs in manufacturing in SA your economy is built on mining wine production tourism and lots of public sector jobs per capita . Please note that also the high early July demand loads were not from still conditions but from strong storms that deliver both cloud cover and the need to protect windmills from high winds.
    Please try to purchase energy contracts forward for this Summer for delivery in SA and compare the costs to the rest of Australia and see what the market thinks about the capacity of renewables to keep the joint running.
    SA politicians have installed too much of a good thing and created massive issues . Please remember that SA winter loads aren’t that bad compared to 40degree summers so look out later in the year.
    Final point ,the coal fired plants shut in SA are significantly cleaner and more efficient than poor old hazelwwod in Vic that will have to run flat out to keep the SA economy going.
    Cheers Cavey

      • Griff , I think you see what you want to see. You see the gap between aggregate demand and attribute it to solar. No doubt is is a factor but its never that black and white. The continual shutdown of manufacturing in SA has played a major role , as it has in VIC with manufacturing and aluminium production.

    • Yes but they’ll say that when the distribution system collapses due to 40C summer AC load, that it is just more proof that we need more renewable energy to reduce CO2 driven Global Warming!

  12. This is a perfect example of how common sense goes out the window when you pour government money into anything. Your average citizen realized a century ago that wind and solar were far inferior to oil and coal. However, let the government say “Wind is good” and start tossing $1000 dollar bills out the window to people and “Wind is good” slogan replaces the knowledge that “Wind is NOT good”. Will it take blackouts? Maybe. Money is a powerful incentive and wind operators are not going to give up the millions easily. Nor are the welfare landowners who get the five and six figure annual rentals. I doubt they care if everyone else ends up in the dark as long as those checks keep coming.

  13. idiocy, hypocrisy or just muddle headed green duplicity? Australia exports 180 million tonnes of thermal coal to be burned and emit Co2 around the rest of the planet so why the local hysteria about Australia causing climate change? Or is Australia like Anna Soubry MP who answering a question in the UK about China burning more coal, she said, “well that’s a worry but we just have to make sure that their emissions done come here”. I asked her if she was going to recruit celestial border guards to make sure but I regret to say that she did not reply. I wonder why?

    • Now it exports coal, but with India about to ban foreign imports and china’s coal use declining…

      • He’s been corrected on both points several times.
        It’s almost as if he is impervious to any data that doesn’t fit into his preferred religion.

      • “He’s been corrected on both points several times.”
        And on several other blogs apart from this one too, of course, going back years.
        You want to see the mendacious rubbish he posts on the Grauniad (er, well, probably not, actually…).

  14. What the boneheads don’t get with their bleatings about the cost of solar panels coming down is it has little to do with capital cost but marginal cost. Let the cost of a 10KW solar panel and inverter system be zero and recall that currently they are around 16% efficient in turning the sun’s energy into electricity. Now assume the bonehead nirvana of 100% efficiency and hold that thought HS physics students. What do you get? Now the maximum installed capacity jumps around 6 fold to 60KW but so does the variability increase 6 fold. Easy to see how you’d want the system capital cost to be zero when the sun goes down boneheads because that’s all it’s worth all night and very close to zero on cloudy days to boot.
    These boneheads need to be strictly restricted to electric cars that are covered in solar panels (high tech solar paint?) so they can experience the joys of driving like Toad of Toad Hall around midday on a lovely sunny day and then walking home at sundown. Yeah I know it would all be lost on them as they’d naturally expect Gummint provided gasoline cabs at their beck and call to run them home.

  15. Along the same lines – on Monday Texas for the first time ever had demand exceed 70,000 MW. Texas has 18,000 MW of wind capacity (which required a $7 BILLION long distance transmission line to take the wind power to the distant cities). So during record demand on Monday of 70,000 MW, how much wind power was available? about 6,000 MW of the installed 18,000MW.

    • “Texas has 18,000 MW of wind capacity (which required a $7 BILLION long distance transmission line to take the wind power to the distant cities).”
      Wow! Who paid for that?

      • TA

        “Texas has 18,000 MW of wind capacity (which required a $7 BILLION long distance transmission line to take the wind power to the distant cities).”
        Wow! Who paid for that?

        Well, Ross Perot – he who ran with Bill Clinton (twice) so Bill and Hillary Clinton would get elected – DID buy the Texas lands between his future windfarms and the actual TX and LA electrical markets so that 7 billion in power lines would have to be built on and across his lands and right-of-ways by companies that Bill and Hillary’s and Bush’s and Pelosi’s and Oboma’s government taxes would pay to have him build ….

    • I like the bit about 6,000 MW available out of 18,000 MW installed capacity during record peal demand. This pretty much says everything you need to know about wind power.

    • At least the way I figure it, that’s also over $1 of capital equipment per watt just to deliver it.

  16. Batteries are not really a solution for unreliability, unless they have gigantic capacit, low leakage rates and the abiiity to recharge them very quickly. Only greenies believe in the ridculous proposition that batteries transforms an unreliable power source into a reliable one. And the cost is not simply in the batteries – storing power in a battery and retrieving it later involves not insignificant losses. Note that excessive overcapacity is required to reduce the possibility of power losses where renewables are concerned.
    Note also the misleading power production quotes – wind power “capacity” of X normally refers not to its capacity, but to its nameplate capacity, which is rarely achieved and never for long. Typical onshore wind
    machines operate at actual capacities 20 to 30% of nameplate capacity, while a coal plant (or nuclear plant) can run at 100% (and more) of its nameplate capacity. To compare two power generators, you NEVER use nameplate capacities as a yardstick. Actual, typical operating capacities are what one must use.

  17. A little off topic — I think it would be interesting to see what would happen if the government mandated that all motorcycles had to be electric powered — yeah, tell that to the Hell’s Angels.
    Eugene WR Gallun

    • I’m surprised California hasn’t already done that. They’re getting close to outlawing the internal combustion engine for transportation with their CARB (and now federal 2025 CAFE) standards. I’m waiting for them to get serious and decide to change it from mile per gallon to ton-miles per gallon. Then we’ll all be riding bicycles.

      • D. J. Hawkins

        Overall transmission losses in the grid are on the order of 7% or less.

        ONLY in yesterday’s grid of local power plants and very, very little regional current exchange. That is, when local power is generated locally (within 200-250 miles of the user) there is a 4-7% loss in transmitted energy.
        When the current is transmitted more than 500 miles, those losses go up to 7-10 percent.
        When currents are transmitted more than 500-1000 miles, the losses go up to as much as half the generated power.
        Want to send current (NOT VOLTAGE!) from Arizona to New York? You lose 50-75% of the energy to heat and circulating currents.
        IF you have a superconducting-supermagnetic DC line from AZ to NY you could do it. Then again, what was the price of that little SSSC superconducting loop only 75 miles long underneath Texas back in the 90’s?

        • To illustrate the error people make between “the national grid” and “transmitting current” cross-country, remember that “electric voltage present” does NOT = “useful “electric power” present.
          Electrical voltage is comparable to water hose pressure.
          volts = “pressure” in the hose, and in a well-regulated electrical system, voltage (water pressure) will be virtually constant regardless of electrical current (water flow) through the wires (pipe).
          Energy requires current however. In a water hose, “flow” is required, NOT “pressure’ (Properly, it is the “pressure difference” between the source (the pump ) and outlet (the end of the hose and its fittings and atmospheric backpressure) that causes flow.
          Voltage losses (pressure losses) occur only with flow, and they increase with flow in either system. No flow, no losses. No transfer of energy either!
          So, if I cap off a garden hose, connect that garden hose up to the faucet, and open the faucet, I get 80 psig water pressure at the end of the hose. Regardless of the length of the hose, I get 80psig water pressure (5.5 barr). Regardless of the diameter of the hose, I get 80 psig water pressure. As long as i have no flow, I get 80 psig water pressure.
          Thus, if I have a fire in front of my garage, a 5 meter, 12 mm diameter garden hose might transfer enough water (energy) to put the fire out. The hose is short, line resistance is little, and backpressure is little. Flow might be adequate. A 5 meter 150 mm diameter hose (6 inch diameter) might not even fill up entirely, but might still “splash” out water to put the fire out if it were held above the fire.
          If I run that 12 mm garden hose to my neighbor’s front yard (100 meters away), I could cap off the end and still measure 5.5 barr (80 psig). But when I open the spray nozzle, I get very little water flow. The internal resistance of a tiny hose and a long distance of hose mean water flow = very little volume out. Capped off (no demand, no current) is still high pressure. (High voltage!)
          Now, if I try to run that 12 mm garden hose 1000 meters, I still can measure 80 psig with no flow. But opening the spray nozzle means near-zero flow. And, if the spray nozzle is uphill far enough, I may not be able to get any flow at all.
          Being on “the grid” improves your reliability to get voltage (water pressure) from multiple sources. (As long as you have a maximum of only 3-5% wind turbines.) But your “power” comes locally.

      • The vast majority of electricity is consumed within a hundred miles or so of where it is generated.
        Regardless, your post does not even address my point, much less refute it.

  18. There is a real case of “forward looking” energy programs never actually looking forward – i.e. never
    observing the obvious future power producing technologies. In a word, molten salt nuclear reactors are
    never mentioned as the solution to everyone’s problems – safety, cost, ability to burn up nuclear wastes as fuel, inexhaustible fuel sources, small geographic footprint, rapid construction in factories, etc. Look ahead
    and see what the future will be like – don’t throw away money on inferior unreliable “renewables”
    and rush to do so when there is no reason, with respect to global warming. Tons of ignorance in every aspect of the decision making process has rendered any actions taken incapable of solving anything. Greenies are trying to stampede folks into making horribly stupid decisions. Moten salt reactors, judging by their characteristics, will prevail. The only question is that when they start massively replacing existing power plants, will those plants be new, expensive renewables, or what we have at present? Even if renewable generators are emplaced, their lifespan will be short. Renewables are not even remotely competitive with molten salt reactors, no matter how they are viewed, from either a cost or an environmental perspective. Renewables truly suck.

  19. Replacing cheap, reliable energy with expensive unreliable energy will cause far more than just blackouts.

    • That’s the frustrating part that we have to endure the mounting costs until the trigger point of serious, widespread blackouts finally sweeps these boneheads into the dustbin of history, as it inevitably will. Their only salvation could possibly come from some, as yet, undreamt of technological breakthrough in electrochemical storage capability, but our ability to date is damning if you care to lift your car bonnet. Surprise, surprise, the ghost of Henry Ford still lives in the battery compartment boneheads.

      • note all the skeptics demanding the code for the model?
        note all the skeptics demanding model validation??
        too funny that you all fall for this alarmism based on unverified models

      • Demanding to see the code means you don’t trust any models?
        What’s wrong with demanding that models should be validated? Don’t you believe a model should prove itself to be accurate before anyone trusts it?
        As to your other lies, some skeptics don’t trust any models. Most skeptics don’t trust any climate models.
        Are you smart enough to see the difference?
        By the who would trust any model that time after time fails validation?

      • PS: Even a low grade moron should be able to figure out that relying on unreliable sources of power will result in black outs. You don’t need a model to figure that out.

    • Let’s cut to the chase, Mosh. Are you supporting the claims that replacement of fossil fuel energy with renewables justifies the added costs and intermittent power delivery? Otherwise, why bother with such evident obfuscation?

    • All models are wrong, some models are useful. Skeptics tend to look under the hood of a model to determine if it is useful. Non-skeptics tend to believe any model that gives the answer that satisfies their emotions. Helps if the model, as implemented in software, has sexy graphics.

    • Keep setting those strawmen up and kicking them down – if it makes you feel better about your own irrational beliefs.

    • Out of curiosity, which is easier to model accurately: the Earth’s land, sea, and atmosphere, or the electric grid of a continent? Intuitively, I’d say the grid is far easier to model, but I have no practical experience with either.

      • That’s a good point. While not proof that their grid model is correct, it is sure a lot more plausible than the global climate models.That said, I would put a lot more stock in them if I knew who wrote them, peer reviewed them, and tested them. So many people out there writing software with no formal training. It’s like having brain surgeons building bridges – highly educated people, but not qualified for such a task.

  20. I can’t find the original quip but it goes something like: The degree of a nation’s civilization is demonstrated by the amount of disruption when the power goes out.
    We can learn to live with disrupted power. We lived without electricity at all in the 1800s. Of course then we weren’t living 76 storeys up in condos.

  21. If I were the premier of South Australia I would be reading these comments with increasing excitement .
    The renewables project is going to involve thousands of acres of windfarms and solar farms , all of which will need to be connected with vast amounts of copper wiring , with silver gold alloys for best electrical contact and thanks to ” thingodonta” i know that i am sitting on a huge deposit of exactly the right materials .
    Given the ready availability of cheap Australian coal I would be planning an enormous industrial complex to produce the copper , without beggaring my electorate by buying from Zambia or China or wherever the cabling comes from. I could even sell excess gold to pay for the project , although I am sure that the nice Mr Turnbull would be as excited as me at the prospect of real , honest -to -goodness home grown manufacturing and payroll the initial investment .
    I would be a hero to the well paid workers flocking into the State, to all progressive supporters of an independent Australia and to the labour unions for providing the work .
    Has to be a winner, surely.

    • an enormous amount of the solar will be consumed exactly where it is generated and/or put back into the grid by existing connections.

  22. “…I would be planning an enormous industrial complex…”
    ——————-
    Build it at Bundanyabba.

  23. As usual, the chief clown at RenewEconomy is trying to make light of this report as scaremongering and has calculated from the shortfall percentages that South Australia would only be expected to experience 11 minutes of blackout each year (22 in the worst case). I don’t know if this is simple naivety or deliberate deception but I have given him the benefit of the doubt and posted the following to clear up the picture for him and his followers.
    http://reneweconomy.com.au/2016/aemo-uses-blackout-threat-push-markets-encourage-storage-13693
    =========================
    I’m sorry but you have misinterpreted the data presented by the AEMO. The shortfall percentages give the period of time when the state grid is projected to be short of generation capacity over a year. This does not mean that the power will be out only for that period.
    Once a grid has a generation shortfall, demand shedding must take place at the edges of the grid to prevent total blackout. Bringing up the blacked out section can take hours as evidenced by the November 2015 incident, due to the need to isolate the blacked out section into subsections that can be brought back online without tripping the powered grid due to the inrush of power required for the reconnection. The larger the blacked out section, the more time is needed to isolate the subsections before power can begin to be restored.
    In the worst case of a state being blacked out, it could take a week – particularly if there is a shortage of large synchronous generators as these allow for larger sections to be reconnected due to the greater stability they provide – South Australia gets many mentions in the ESOO report for this reason. They discuss the stability in terms of avoiding islanding and blackout but on page 36 of the full report, the restart issue is discussed.
    The other big problem is that the type 3 and 4 wind turbines that have been installed in Australia do not provide synchronous inertia to the grids as they do not have the circuitry needed for this (Enercon calls their version “inertial emulation”). This reduces the ability of a grid to drive current through a shorted circuit which means in the event of a fault, generators are more likely to trip rather than circuit breakers leading to larger portions of the grid being blacked out. Again, this leads to longer reconnection times as there is more time needed to find the cause of the fault, along with the sectioning required, before reconnections can take place.
    The good thing is that the Victorian and NSW shortfall percentages are projected for 2 GW of reduction in NSW coal generation and 800 MW of reduction in Victorian coal generation capacities beyond 2025 without similar replacement.
    The bad thing is that the projections for South Australia are for the current state of their grid. There is 210 MW of solar thermal stated as being proposed in 2 projects for Port Augusta which could help.
    ======================
    Full ESOO report here – https://www.aemo.com.au/Electricity/National-Electricity-Market-NEM/Planning-and-forecasting/-/media/4A5749FEF3284A94B305E291514211E5.ashx

      • Boulder and Asheville aren’t too far behind, and gaining ground. California’s third largest export, behind pot and vegetables, is idiots.

      • The granola state does have some fruits and nuts so in theory it is possible to be flakeyer.
        But in practice any place that is really flakey tends to look like granola.
        California is exporting a lot of their crop of idiots but they seem to be keeping the cream of the crop.
        Oregon has a big problem with exported Californians much like New Hampshire did with Massachusetts expatriates who have basically ruined the state.

      • Yep, I remember when I was in Montana in the ’70s there was a range war starting between the locals and the California expats. No one in the Flathead Valley had even seen a fence until the immigrants moved in.

  24. Sources of all energy are free, be it coal, uranium, wind, rainfall (dams), insolation. What costs is the conversion to a useful energy, such as electricity. Thus the comparison should be on that cost, which looks like this in the USA:
    Electricity production at major energy sources per employee in 2015:
    Nuclear 2000 kW per employee
    Fossil fuels 1500 kW/e.
    Wind 250 kW/e.
    Solar 15 kW/e.
    Example comparison: 100 times more employees are needed in solar for the same output than in fossil plants. Which means the monthly bill would be close to 100 higher without subsidies, tax and credit breaks, …. in that case.

  25. They fed the UK population the same nonsense 5 years ago. We had a simple reply, if you can’t keep the lights on, why should we pay tax? Needless to say the lights stayed on.

  26. I love the picture. I’m sure all that deicing fluid is fantastic for the environment. Lol.

  27. It looks like they talk more about demand management that supply management. They’ll focus on getting the consumers to accept that they can’t use as much electricity, and that they should just accept that the house will be dark and not as warm or cool as it would need to be to be comfortable. They should adapt themselves to this, rather than expect that those they pay to provide electricity should meet their needs. The cost will be raised until enough demand is squeezed out, and new capacity of course is banned.
    Only in a government-shielded monopoly would anyone ever want to manage demand that way. It also provides for very inefficient allocation of resources, as we see every time central planning is employed.

    • Just do a quick internet search with the parameter “smart grid”.
      All you need to know about demand management in the Future Utopia.
      Regards,
      MCR

    • California imports significant amounts of power from the Pacific Northwest and from Arizona. They have made it very difficult to build additional reliable base load capacity while scheduling shutdowns of existing plants, such as the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant. The shortfall will be made up by additional imports (from far further than 100 miles) and “increased user efficiencies”. They are already dealing with planned black and brown (reduced voltage) outs.
      At the same time, they lead the world in pushing for the use of electricity as a transportation fuel.
      What could possibly go wrong?

  28. Sounds like its time to abandon the idea of 24/7 electrical grid reliability. That couldnt last anyway.

  29. The Aussies will do just fine with renewables and storage, with natural gas as the backup power.
    Viable grid-scale storage includes more than those mentioned in the article. There are conventional pumped storage hydroelectric with two fresh water lakes, the Okinawa storage with the ocean as the lower reservoir and a seawater lake elevated onshore, the MIT underwater spheres in shallow coastal waters, rail gravity systems in the low hills, and the new HPA batteries (Halogenated Poly-Acetylene) patented by BioSolar.
    The world of power production has changed. It’s about time, too, as cheap coal is just about exhausted.
    Nuclear is far too expensive and dangerous, coal is about to run out, leaving only natural gas and renewables with storage.

    • What have you been smoking? Viable grid-scale storage that can be deployed anywhere is still decades away at best. And we have 100 years or more of coal reserves which are cheaper than wind and solar and will probably always be. And coal power plants have an advantage that “renewables” don’t: a positive EROI.

    • What a nonsense. Coal is not any more “about to run out” than any other source of energy and renewables provide energy (electricity) so expensive that starvation and social unrest will destroy or return our civilization centuries back. See the COST of energy (repeated below) that one would have to be able to pay to live as today. Have you considered that it is the INDUSTRY that uses most energy to make goods. How expensive will those goods be if electricity is hundred times more expensive then today?
      Employment (operation) cost of a unit of electricity:
      Nuclear 2000 employees
      Fossil fuels 1500
      Wind 250
      Solar 15
      Operation cost represents by far the greatest portion in the cost of electricity. Investment cost is low for fossil and nuclear facilities because they last for 60 to 100 years operating at a CF of 90 %.

      • Correction: The numbers above refer to money (salaries), not employees. Looking at them another way, say by taking the operation cost per unit of energy produced by nuclear as 1, fossil fuels are 1.3 times higher, wind 8 times higher, and solar, the dearest of them, 133 times higher.
        I should also add that nuclear is the safest source per unit of energy produced, and its “fuel” cost is negligible, particularly if re-processed. Wind is the most dangerous in terms of the loss of life. Both wind and solar require rebuild every two decades, nuclear plants have been in operation for over 60 years and can be rebuilt indefinitely.

    • Nuclear is not dangerous, never has been and the only reason why it is expensive is because of all the obstacles put in it’s way by the luddites.
      We have at least 1000 years of coal left, I have no idea where you got the absurd notion that we are about to run out.
      You have a very strange definition of viable. Pumped storage is suitable in only limited locations, and loses as much as 25% of the energy stored. Nothing viable about that.
      As to the Aussie’s doing just fine. The real world data refutes your claims.

      • Nuclear is far too expensive

        Sure. Versus all the gimcrack storage schemes you’ve listed PLUS the overbuild needed for the renewable generators to supply current demand AND charge up the storage, I can really see that.
        /SARC
        Try doing the math like they do on Euan Mearns excellent site Energy Matters, Roge.

    • Re nuclear power safety.
      Nuclear power is indeed unsafe, as the evidence clearly shows. In the US alone over the past 5 years, a nuclear reactor shut down without warning approximately every 3 weeks to prevent a serious malfunction, a core meltdown. The five sites that have actually had major meltdowns thus far, Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, and three reactors at Fukushima Dai-Ichi, were due to operator erroneous response to a routine pump shutdown (Three Mile Island), operator bad judgement in performing an unsafe test (Chernobyl), and a full fiasco of errors at Fukushima starting with placing nuclear plants at coastal level in an area known for earthquakes and tsunamis, plus setting the emergency generators in the building basements where flooding disabled them. Evacuation plans for surrounding communities due to dangerous radiation release are required at each plant. Three Mile Island meltdown resulted in a short-term evacuation. Chernobyl continues with a long-term evacuation. Fukushima also has large areas evacuated after more than 5 years. The fundamentally unsafe nature of nuclear plants is due to the radioactive fuel meltdown when cooling water stops flowing, a Loss of Cooling Accident. Medical risks to populations are known to exist but a detailed US study to better quantify the risks was refused funding. An example is the short-lived Rancho Seco nuclear plant near Sacramento, California, which was forced by the NRC to shut down permanently after only 18 years of operation (1971 – 1989) due to an incredible number of leaks, radiation emissions, fires, mechanical breakdowns, and other safety issues.
      Re grid-scale storage for electricity.
      All of the technologies described above are viable, and all but the BioSolar batteries and MIT spheres are already demonstrated as effective. Other battery storage systems are already in place, such as the 100 MW battery storage near Tehachapi, California.
      The Okinawa seawater pumped storage system can be duplicated on any seacoast with an appropriate highland or cliff. There are many thousands of such sites world-wide. The MIT underwater spheres can be installed in any shallow coastal waters, again many thousands of such sites exist. The rail gravity system is under construction in Nevada on a mountain near Las Vegas.
      A private study, unpublished, shows that California will reach its legally-mandated 50 percent level of renewable electricity by the year 2030 by installing 50,000 MW of solar power plant (most likely PV) along with 30,000 MW and 7 hours of storage (most likely batteries). Detailed analysis shows the grid functions smoothly and without blackouts. The state already operates smoothly with 25 percent renewable electricity on an annual average.
      Re the world-wide coal shortage.
      Coal that is available for power generation is what is in limited supply. The USGS experts (United States Geological Survey) conclude that the US has less than 19 billion tons of recoverable reserves (the portion of all coal resources than can be mined both technically and economically with the best available technology and at current prices). The US also consumes approximately 1 billion tons per year, although that number is expected to decline as great numbers of grandfathered coal-fired power plants choose to shut down rather than comply with air pollution regulations.
      World coal recoverable reserves show only approximately 50 years remaining, with approximately 470 billion tons available and world consumption of 9 billion tons per year. World coal consumption per year is accelerating as India and China build more power plants. For reference, Professor David Rutledge of CalTech published in January 2011: http://www.its.caltech.edu/~rutledge/DavidRutledgeCoalGeology.pdf
      And an update in 2013: http://www.its.caltech.edu/~rutledge/DaveRutledge2013GSA.pptx
      It is quite interesting to see that Germany mined coal far beyond its economic limit by placing heavy subsidies on the product to promote continued mining. The UK, however, elected to close its uneconomic deep coal mines although a few shallow open pit mines are still operating.
      Finally, as to nuclear being far too expensive.
      The proposed plant expansion in South Texas, near Houston, was to construct two 1,100 MWe reactors alongside the existing two reactors. The plant proponents threw in the towel when the cost estimate was given as $17 billion, but the designer admitted that did not include all of the costs. More recently, the proposed UK Hinkley Point C twin-reactor plant at 3,200 MWe has its cost to construct published at $27 billion US (£18 billion). After the usual cost overruns and construction delays, Hinkley Point C will without doubt cost $32 billion US, or $10,000 per kW. This is in an era of low inflation and low interest rates. The four reactors under construction in the US, all AP-1000 reactors at 1,200 MWe each, are many $billions over budget and years behind schedule. The EPR reactors under construction in Finland and France are also many $billions over budget and years behind in schedule.
      Even existing nuclear plants in the US cannot compete in the market, with several already shut down and a few gaining sympathy from misguided legislators to offer even more subsidies on top of the multiple subsidies they already have.

      • You totally beclown yourself with your first claim.
        The rest of your long winded nonsense from propaganda sites just wasn’t worth reviewing.
        Try to read some real science rather than selecting sites based on your own unreasoning fears.

      • “The fundamentally unsafe nature of nuclear plants is due to the radioactive fuel meltdown when cooling water stops flowing,”
        That’s exactly right, so the key is to make sure the cooling water keeps flowing no matter what happens. You don’t think we can’t figure a way to make that happen? Poor design and lack of foresight is what caused the problems in the past. We can fix that. We now have several examples of what *not* to do.

      • For Janus100,
        The University of Texas that conferred on me my chemical engineering degree says I am. The engineering professional society to which I belong also says I am. The universities that regularly invite me to speak to their engineering students also agree that I am an engineer.
        Perhaps it is you who has the difficulty grasping engineering and economics.

        • Roger Sowell, there is a lot of difference between having a degree in engineering and actually being an engineer.

      • catweazle666,
        I’ll be sure to relay your opinion to all the manufacturing companies, engineering companies, and hundreds of clients that hired me and paid me for my engineering skills over the past 40 years. More than 75 refineries and petrochemical plant owners were more than happy for me to perform engineering in their facilities. Almost all the work was under non-disclosure agreements, so I cannot provide many specifics other than when, the client name and location, and generally what my colleagues and I did. It is sufficient to say that the clients ranged from small independent refiners to national oil companies like PetroCanada, AGIP, China National Petroleum Company, and the international giants like Exxon.
        Here’s a link describing just one such job in Beijing, China:
        http://sowellslawblog.blogspot.com/2016/01/exxonmobil-refinery-explosion-in.html
        An excerpt: In 1990 the People’s Republic of China’s national oil company, refining division, surveyed and analyzed all of the country’s oil refineries to determine what could be done to modernize, improve, and make the refineries more efficient in yield, profit, and energy use. First, the effort was internal, using the best Chinese engineers and professors. Following that effort, the Chinese government wanted an outside expert opinion on the matter. They solicited bids for the work from consultants around the world, including from Japan, the UK, the US, and other nations. Within the US, the little consulting company where I worked (20 engineers), received an invitation to bid. My company won the award and my boss and I were soon on a plane to Beijing for a three-week consulting trip.

  30. Thermalization eliminates any significant influence CO2 might have on climate. Increasing water vapor is countering the expected global temperature decline from blank sun & decline in net ocean cycle temperature. http://globalclimatedrivers2.blogspot.com
    Gas turbine backup to avoid blackouts when the wind isn’t blowing (or it’s dark) might be worse than adequate coal or nuclear base capacity.
    Changing from coal to natural gas adds water vapor and probably increases the risk of flooding.
    Monckton showed the downtrend in droughts at https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/07/22/is-the-reuters-news-agency-committing-fraud
    Eschenbach showed the increase in water vapor at https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/07/25/precipitable-water/comment-page-1

  31. Attrition sometimes comes before contrition. What is needed is for a nation somewhere to be green-stupid enough to irreversibly screw up their electricity infrastructure and fall into a fourth world status of continual black and brown outs. A feast of eco-schadenfreude awaits.

  32. “demand side management services”
    Code for “turning off people’s power.” And although it’s listed last, it’s probably the first thing they will do.

  33. http://energy.anero.id.au/wind-energy is a real time chart of the output of all the wind farms from Port Lincoln SA to Taralga NSW. .
    There are links to historical output charts as well.
    They show how variable the output is from wind farms and how the having them located across a third of the continent doesn’t overcome the variability.

    • Great site. Particularly the Wind Power Graphs. I would not want to be the grid manager last Friday and Saturday (first weekend in August, 2016). A wintery south Australian day with power output from the vast bulk of the wind farms approaching zero.
      The answer is to get power from a neighboring jurisdiction that is lesws green. All the while, fighting to make them more green..
      That’s why California imports a third of its’ power. When they had a political tiff with Arizona, they proposed a boycott of buying Arizona products. The governor of Arizona suggested that they could start with electricity and Arizona would assist their boycott by turning it off. End of boycott.

  34. It is not that batteries are unlikely to be sufficient to support a national power grid, it is that they have no chance in hell of being sufficient, presuming you consider mining tens of thousands of tons of lead and bringing it to the surface to be environmentally friendly.

  35. So (1) is the importance, (2) is the problem :
    (1) the growing importance of network and non-network developments
    (3) to securely manage an evolving, lower carbon electricity generation future.
    – lower carbon electricity generation problem will stay the future –

  36. Dreaming of
    Batteries are also not a real solution, at least with today’s technology. Storage systems such as organic redox batteries, which in theory might one day provide energy storage on the scale required, are still very much a laboratory toy.
    Is part of the problem.

  37. So what AEMO did say was that there was a really small chance of a blackout in 2019/20 SA given the most aggressive and neutral economic growth scenarios. In the low growth scenario – the most likely scenario given the Car industry is closing down and the Subs are the only thing set to replace it- there was no such problem.
    What forward looking younger people in the industry can see is that renewables provide a set of energy sources that have little or no fuel cost. That is what will kill fossil fuels. There will always be a cost of digging stuff up – and whats more the commodity markets are always at risk of speculation, withholding of supply, and basic miscalculation of demand and supply that plays havoc with the costs. As costs of wind and solar( and batteries) continue to come down this will make it increasingly difficult for fossil fuels to compete. Gas is the fuel that will compete with Batteries for grid stability – FCAS, inertia and peak load – and frankly the cost of gas is only going in one direction in Australia ( give you a hint the cost of solar and batteries is going the other way).
    What will be required are sophisticated grid management and demand side management systems (turning people’s supply off or down in exchange for money) as well as improvements in batteries, EV and Vehicle to Grid capability as well as Building and home energy management systems. So smart utility folks now have new and exciting tasks to keep them busy. So instead of the money flowing to miners and speculators – this should in the next decade flow to smart engineers and programmers and entrepreneurs who can solve these problems.
    Keeping prices stable and the (LED) lights on.
    No one has ever been right telling us the the sky was going to fall in.

  38. https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/07/06/climate-tensions-still-running-hot-within-the-democrat-party/comment-page-1/#comment-2253292
    Sallie Baliunas, Tim Patterson and I debated the Pembina Institute in 2002 in the PEGG – the Journal of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta.
    Our debate is now available at:
    http://www.friendsofscience.org/assets/documents/KyotoAPEGA2002REV1.pdf
    Our eight-point Rebuttal includes predictions that have all materialized in those countries in Western Europe that have adopted the full measure of global warming mania. My country, Canada, was foolish enough to sign the Kyoto Protocol, but then wise enough to ignore it.
    [Our 2002 article is in “quotation marks”, followed by current commentary.]
    On Green Energy:
    8. “The ultimate agenda of pro-Kyoto advocates is to eliminate fossil fuels, but this would result in a catastrophic shortfall in global energy supply – the wasteful, inefficient energy solutions proposed by Kyoto advocates simply cannot replace fossil fuels.”
    Governments that adopted “green energy” schemes such as wind and solar power are finding these schemes are not green and produce little useful energy. Their energy costs are soaring and these governments are often in retreat, dropping their green energy subsidies as fast as they politically can.
    _______________
    So we told you so – 14 years ago.
    Regardless of the serious unresolved questions of the global warming scientific debate, wind and solar power do NOT contribute reliable, economic electric power to the grid.
    This is a simple and proven hypothesis, yet trillions of dollars have been wasted globally on this green energy nonsense.
    Wind power is a mature technology so it is unlikely to ever become economic.
    Solar power is more costly than wind power now, but major technological improvements are still possible.
    We tried to explain the fatal flaws of wind power to the public and our politicians without success. I concluded a simpler message was required, so that our politicians and their green minions could understand it.
    Years ago, I wrote the following:
    Wind power – it doesn’t just blow – it sucks!
    Solar power – stick it where the Sun don’t shine!
    Apparently this is still too complicated for our politicians and the greens.
    Regards to all, Allan 🙂

    • for Allan MacRae:
      Wind power is NOT a mature technology, as there are many areas that are improving annually that reduce installed costs while increasing output per MW of capacity. See e.g. Sandia’s flexible blades for 50 MW offshore turbines. http://energy.gov/articles/enormous-blades-offshore-energy
      Onshore wind turbines are benefiting from much taller towers that use cast-in-place concrete. Also, onshore wind power has shown substantial annual installed-cost decreases.
      Wind power is already economic in the Great Plains region of the US. It will become even more economic with the taller towers and flexible blades. Flexible blades allow turbines to continue generating power in very high winds instead of shutting off.
      Various low-speed wind turbines are in development and will add to the sites that can economically produce power.
      Solar power with PV technology is also economic in areas with sufficient insolation, such as Southern California, Nevada, and Arizona.
      The real improvement, though, with game-changing implications is the development of grid-scale, low-cost storage batteries that use the BioSolar patent-pending polyacetylene technology.
      All these are very good things, as the US is nearly out of coal (running out in less than 20 years), and the world coal supply will be exhausted within 50 years. These facts are for economically recoverable coal, not ultimate coal resources.
      The facts completely refute your assertion above, “wind and solar power do NOT contribute reliable, economic electric power to the grid.” As an example, California annually obtains 5 to 10 percent of all electric power into the grid from solar and wind power. Iowa obtains more than 30 percent of its power from wind power, and has one of the lowest electricity prices in the country. Several states obtain more than 20 percent of their electricity from wind power.

      • “All these are very good things, as the US is nearly out of coal (running out in less than 20 years), and the world coal supply will be exhausted within 50 years.”
        Utter drivel.

  39. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/12/21/ben-santers-damage-control-on-uah-global-temperature-data/#more-53471
    The essence of any competent practitioner’s credentials is the ability to predict a result.
    However, NOT ONE of the scary predictions of the global warming alarmists has materialized.
    The global warmists have NO PREDICTIVE SKILL!
    In fact, their predictive skill is negative – to date, their dire predictions have all been FALSE!
    Anyone who still listens to them is clearly unaware of this critical fact, or is so brainwashed that facts no longer matter.
    Given the negative track record of the warming alarmists, just ask yourself one question:
    Would you hire someone with this dismal track record to paint your house, tow your car, or fix your toilet?

  40. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/02/27/exxon-stands-up-to-the-green-bullies/comment-page-1/#comment-2154602
    On Energy:
    I have worked in the energy industry for much of my career.
    When challenged on the global warming question by green fanatics, I explain that that fossil fuels keep their families from freezing and starving to death.
    Cheap abundant reliable energy is the lifeblood of society – it IS that simple.
    Furthermore, I suggest that recognition of this reality is an ethical and a professional obligation.
    The following numbers are from the 2015 BP Statistical Review of World Energy, for the year 2014:
    http://www.bp.com/content/dam/bp/pdf/energy-economics/statistical-review-2015/bp-statistical-review-of-world-energy-2015-primary-energy-section.pdf
    Global Primary Energy Consumption by Fuel is 86% Fossil Fuel (Oil, Coal and Natural Gas),
    4% Nuclear,
    7% Hydro,
    and 2% Renewables.
    That 2% for Renewables is vastly exaggerated, and would be less than 1% if intermittent wind and solar power were not forced into the electrical grid ahead of cheaper and more reliable conventional power.
    This is not news – we have known this energy reality for decades. As we published in 2002.
    “The ultimate agenda of pro-Kyoto advocates is to eliminate fossil fuels, but this would result in a catastrophic shortfall in global energy supply – the wasteful, inefficient energy solutions proposed by Kyoto advocates simply cannot replace fossil fuels.”
    On Grid-Connected Wind and Solar Power:
    Wind Power is what warmists typically embrace – trillions of dollars have been squandered on worthless grid-connected wind power schemes that require life-of-project subsidies and drive up energy costs.
    Some background on grid-connected wind power schemes:
    The Capacity Factor of wind power is typically a bit over 20%, but that is NOT the relevant factor.
    The real truth is told by the Substitution Capacity, which is dropping to as low as 4% in Germany – that is the amount of conventional generation that can be permanently retired when wind power is installed into the grid.
    The E.ON Netz Wind Report 2005 is an informative document:
    http://www.wind-watch.org/documents/wp-content/uploads/eonwindreport2005.pdf
    (apparently no longer available from E.ON Netz website).
    Figure 6 says Wind Power is too intermittent (and needs almost 100% spinning backup);
    and
    Figure 7 says it just gets worse and worse the more Wind Power you add to the grid (see Substitution Capacity dropping from 8% to 4%).
    The same story applies to grid-connected Solar Power (both in the absence of a “Super-Battery”).
    This was obvious to us decades ago.
    Trillions of dollars have been squandered globally on green energy that is not green and produces little useful energy.
    On Global Warming Alarmism:
    We also write in the same 2002 article, prior to recognition that the current ~20 year “Pause” (actually a Plateau) was already underway:
    “Climate science does not support the theory of catastrophic human-made global warming – the alleged warming crisis does not exist.”
    I (we) now think global cooling will commence after the current El Nino runs its course, prior to 2020 and possibly as soon as 2017. Bundle up!
    Regards to all, Allan

  41. Allan MacRae said:
    “We also write in the same 2002 article, prior to recognition that the current ~20 year “Pause” (actually a Plateau) was already underway:
    “Climate science does not support the theory of catastrophic human-made global warming – the alleged warming crisis does not exist.”
    I (we) now think global cooling will commence after the current El Nino runs its course, prior to 2020 and possibly as soon as 2017. Bundle up!”
    Well, good luck with that. We’ll know soon enough!

    • I hope to be wrong about global cooling Phillip. Here is why:
      COLD WEATHER KILLS 20 TIMES AS MANY PEOPLE AS HOT WEATHER
      June 13, 2015
      By Joseph D’Aleo and Allan MacRae
      https://friendsofsciencecalgary.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/cold-weather-kills-macrae-daleo-4sept2015-final.pdf
      Cold weather kills. Throughout history and in modern times, many more people succumb to cold exposure than to hot weather, as evidenced in a wide range of cold and warm climates.
      Evidence is provided from a study of 74 million deaths in thirteen cold and warm countries including Thailand and Brazil, and studies of the United Kingdom, Europe, the USA, Australia and Canada.
      Contrary to popular belief, Earth is colder-than-optimum for human survival. A warmer world, such as was experienced during the Roman Warm Period and the Medieval Warm Period, is expected to lower winter deaths and a colder world like the Little Ice Age will increase winter mortality, absent adaptive measures.
      These conclusions have been known for many decades, based on national mortality statistics.

      • Cold weather kills but runaway warming has lead to extinction in the past.
        By the way Electricity price spikes have been a result of energy companies “gaming” the system and exploiting their unusual market power to charge “monopoly rents”, according to an in-depth report by the Melbourne Energy Institute.

      • I’m not sure what any of that has to do with why you might be wrong about imminent global cooling?

Comments are closed.