Common Fantasy: “Red States Are Dumping Coal for Solar”

Guest bubble bursting by David Middleton

Juan Cole of Common Dreams (a socialist rage) is always good for a laugh.


Monday, July 22, 2019
It’s Just Good Business: Even Red States Are Dumping Coal for Solar
by Juan Cole

Arizona, despite being GOP-dominated, is number 3 in the US for residential solar power production. In the first quarter of 2019 alone, Arizona homeowners put in 52.83 megawatts of new solar installations. As for industrial-scale solar, Arizona utility APS generates 1.4 gigawatts worth of solar power, equivalent to a small nuclear plant. APS’s rival TEP is planning residential solar installations in 90,000 Arizona homes.

[Orange man bad, blah, blah, blah]

Common Fantasies

Solar power works better in Arizona than just about anywhere else in America. It’s a subset of “Nonhydroelectric Renewables”…

Figure 1. Arizona State Energy Profile, US EIA.

All five members of Georgia’s Public Service Commission are Republicans, and they just decided to double their order for new solar… power and to close a coal plant

Common Fantasies

Figure 2. Georgia State Energy Profile, US EIA.

New Orleans has decided to add 90 megawatts of solar power, nearly doubling Louisana’s current 99 MW.

Common Fantasies

Figure 3. Louisiana State Energy Profile, US EIA.

Texas has been, inexplicably, a laggard in the solar sector. It is a wind giant. But precisely for that reason, solar installations are increasing and the state has jumped to sixth in the country for solar production…

Common Fantasies

Almost all of Texas’ “renewables” come from wind power and April is the windiest month of the year.

Figure 4. Texas State Energy Profile, US EIA.

Texas “has jumped to sixth in the country for solar production”… which is clustered with biomass, hydroelectric and other just above the Dean Wormer line…

Figure 5. 2019 Demand and Energy Report (ERCOT)

Solar production in Texas is effectively…

Juan Cole’s amazingly stupid article never mentioned natural gas until the last paragraph…

So, to summarize: Republican decision-makers increasingly see solar as just a good business investment that produces electricity more cost-effectively than coal. One important consideration is that the fuel is free, so that municipalities that want 25-year bids favor renewables over fossil fuels. Who knows how expensive natural gas will be in 2044? But sun and wind will still be free. 

Common Fantasies

Who knows how expensive natural gas will be in 2044?

Common Fantasies
Figure 6. AEO2019 natural gas price projections.

Between $3.21 and $7.03 per mmBtu, most likely around $4.38/mmBtu. And the cost of natural gas-fired electricity in current dollars won’t be much higher than it is now according to the Energy Information Administration.

Figure 7. Natural gas advanced combined cycle LCOE (US EIA)

But sun and wind will still be free. 

Common Fantasies

Not even in your wildest Enviromarxist fantasies…

Figure 8. Solar PV LCOE (US EIA)
Figure 9. Wind, onshore LCOE (US EIA)
Figure 10. Wind, offshore LCOE (US EIA)

$110.40 per MWh???

Figure 11. You really can’t.

According to the US EIA’s Annual Energy Outlook, in 2050 we’ll be getting 48% of 31% of our electricity from solar PV. For the math-impaired, that’s 15%… While, we’ll be still getting 17% of our electricity from coal-fired power plants.

Figure 12. US EIA AEO2019.

Of course, electricity generation is only one part of the energy puzzle. Primary energy includes transportation, electricity generation, industrial, commercial and residential consumption.

Figure 13. US EIA AEO2019.

The green curve is “other renewables,” primarily wind (both onshore and offshore) and solar, the gray curve is “coal,” the blue curve is “natural gas.” Note that in 2050, “other renewables” will have barely overtaken “coal,” while “petroleum and other liquids” and “natural gas” will each be 3-4 times the Quad Btu as “other renewables.”

Are EIA projections always right? No. They’re “projections”. EIA totally missed the Shale Revolution. If frac’ing was a unicorn, then Juan Cole’s fantasy would be a projection.

Juan Cole earns a Distinguished Billy Madison Cross for his efforts.

Advertisements

77 thoughts on “Common Fantasy: “Red States Are Dumping Coal for Solar”

    • “Dumping” is hardly the word. They have replaced some of the coal capacity with natural gas combined cycle.

      The U.S. electricity industry has retired almost 18 gigawatts (GW) of coal-fired generating capacity since the beginning of 2018, with an additional 4 GW planned to retire by the end of this year and 3 GW in 2020. These recent retirements represent 10% of the U.S. coal-fired generating capacity that was operating at the end of 2017.

      https://www.eia.gov/outlooks/steo/report/electricity.php

      2018 -18 GW
      2019 -4 GW
      2020 -3 GW
      2018-2010 -25 GW

      25 is 10% of… 250.

      That only leaves 225 GW of coal-fired generating capacity.

      • Here in Ontario, Canada, we dumped coal a few years ago, and the Liberal government of the day went large into “renewables”. Where are we now, you ask?:

        Hourly Output by Fuel Type at 7:00 a.m. EST
        Nuclear 11,520 MW
        Hydro 3,282 MW
        Gas 1,262 MW
        Wind 334 MW
        Solar 40 MW
        Biofuel 48 MW

        Yeah, thank Gaia for nukes…

        • And on top of that, Ontario’s nuclear power stations use natural uranium!

          Green Party, put that in your green pipe and smoke it…

          There is nothing more natural than harnessing natural forces like fission of heavy elements to the service and benefit of humankind. It can be done intermittently using a remote source like the Sun, or under the control of experts in a CANDU reactor.

          Now that Americans are allowed to source their pharmaceuticals from Canada, they may recognise how much of their electricity comes from here as well. AOC, did they tell you about that? How much of NYC’s electricity is imported from the James Bay Hydro Scheme? Keep banning new gas connections, We have lots more energy to sell. Can’t guarantee the price, however.

          • The Sun’s energy is not via “fission of heavy elements”, but by fusion of light ones (hydrogen). Big difference.

          • Donb, the “big difference” is that the nuclear reactors are on Earth and that the “natural” rotation of the Earth (you know, Day an Night) or a cloudy day don’t shut them down.

        • I don’t think there are any coal fired power stations left operational in Ontario. The last one to go I think was either Nanticoke or Lambton. Lakeveiw was dismantled around 2009 and the site remains empty. Dismantling work at Nanticoke is currently underway, and a solar farm of all things is planned to be built on the site of the old coal plant. Dismantling work is only starting at Lambton.

          Meanwhile the four coal fired power stations at Point Aconi, Lingan, Trenton, and Point Tupper in Nova Scotia remain in operation.

      • Griff may have a point…
        Ther are “Dumping Coal”
        Dunping it right into hoppers to burn in power generation plants and Steel Manufacturing

    • Replacing it with natural gas in many cases. Not the useless wind and solar. So it’s still FOSSIL FUELS all the way. It’s also purely for economics. Has zip to do with CO2 and climate change garbage.

      • What’s usually ignored in these articles about wind generation in Texas is that every wind farm built has backup nat gas generators that kick in and keep the power flowing to the grid whenever the wind dies down. Which is a lot of time.

          • … fails to include “delivery charge” in graphed data …

            Can you plot for us the all-in cost, which includes the delivery charge?

          • That is the “all-in cost.”

            We’re paying about 9c/kWh to Reliant for electricity about 3c/kWh to Oncor for delivery.

          • David–I fail to see how using two plants to generate electricity is a bargain. If you had low auto insurance rates but twice as many accidents as every other state, would that be great?

          • It’s not a bargain… But it’s not a disaster like California.

            The purple-ish bars at the top, labelled “gas”, are “peakers”. Our peak season for “peakers” is May through October, which is the least windy part of the year and includes the hottest months.

            Would our prices be lower with no wind and more natural gas combined cycle? Maybe. Would our prices be lower with no wind and not having retired a lot of coal capacity? Absolutely. But we can’t re-rack history for a do-over. As it is, Texas has managed the introduction of renewables (wind) as well or better than any other State… And a helluva a lot better than California or the New England States.

          • Wouldn’t the “Delivery Charge” be the same regardless of who was dumping the electrons into the wires?

          • Everybody in the Oncor distribution area pays Oncor for delivery.

            Oncor gets about 3c/kWh. The electricity providers offer all sorts of complicated plans for the energy charge, which can vary quite a bit with usage.

    • griff – August 1, 2019 at 2:32 am

      But all states are dumping coal, aren’t they?

      Shur nuff, griff, …… you are absolutely right.

      Pretty much every person or company that produces, buys, sells or uses coal is guilty of “dumping it”.

      Loading, ….. transporting …. and then dumping ….. is how coal is moved from “source” to ”user”.

    • And some day in the future when nat gas gets more expensive then coal, the trend will reverse.
      So what?

  1. Take away the backup power generation, and wind and solar will fail.

    To think that all of this very experience “”Free”” power is all because the so called Climate Scientists are unable to understand the prosperities of a single gas.

    Finally is CO2 subject to the logarithmic law, that the so called heating effect becomes less mad less as the small amount in the vast atmosphere increases.

    MJE VK5ELL

    • Michael – August 1, 2019 at 2:46 am

      Finally is CO2 subject to the logarithmic law, that the so called heating effect becomes less mad less as the small amount in the vast atmosphere increases.

      Shur it tis, …… shur it tis.

      It gets less n’ less until things start freezing up.

      Just like NaCl is subject to the logarithmic law, …… which causes its “taste” to decrease with each additional applied “shake”.

  2. “The fuel is free” LOL!! … all fuel is free, we only pay for the means to harvest it.

    Coal is free – you just have to pay to mine it
    Oil is free – you just have to pay to drill it
    Wind is free – you have have to pay the politicians to give you subsidies and then bribe the local politicians to give you planning consent and pay the Chinese to built the bird-mincers for you …

    • And water from your tap is free – it just falls from the sky.
      Oh, and then there is the collection, storage, filtration, and distribution.
      But it is FREE I tell you – FREE……!!

      Ralph

      • And I’m one of those that treat the water supplied to your tap. I don’t work for FREE!!! 😎
        (Hmm…do I have a “green” job or a “blue” job?)

    • “bird-mincers-2 us correct, Mike et al. Sooner or later this slicing and dicing of our feathered friends is going to need correcting, and, as per mining company studies, only physical barriers work.

    • Excellent comment, Mike.

      I tell people I will give them free fuel for life for a car I sell them. The car costs 3 times what other cars cost, the insurance is twice normal, the government will subsidize part of the cost until it doesn’t, and the car will only run for random lengths of time on random days of the month (yes, that means it will stop 200 miles from your destination when the time runs out for that day). But the fuel is FREE. There don’t seem to be any takers.

      • ” There don’t seem to be any takers.” Maybe an ad during that US Democratic debate last night, your phone would be ringing off the hook. Where did they find enough trained seals for that audience.

    • Mike H

      I was going to point out the same thing: coal is free. It is just lying there, sometimes a little under the surface. It is odd that J Cole says wind is free and intimates that other natural resources are not. That is very strange, actually, and is a misunderstanding of what a “natural resource” is.

      Uranium is a natural resource too. It is free for your taking, unless someone sells it to a company controlled by a foreign power intent on your destruction. In that case you might have to pay a lot to get access to your own natural (free) resources.

      I like the claim about “dumping coal”. It sounds like “dumping steel” or some other high value export. At present Hydro Quebec is “dumping” electricity on the US well below the cost of generating it near the point of use. I hear it is something like $0.01 per KWH bulk price, long term contract. Anyone have a firm figure? Natural gas and wind can’t touch that kind of price.

  3. The thing you can’t lose sight of is the cost of money. Either you borrow money and have to pay interest, or you have money and have to choose the best way to use it.

    If I’m thinking of investing my money in a windmill, I have to compare the income from that with what I could get just by letting my money sit in the bank. opportunity cost

    Even if the wind and sun are free, windmills and solar panels are still capital intensive. Not only that but, the infrastructure they require is expensive. Even if solar PV panels were free, the required infrastructure, including real estate, is far from free. I don’t know how much an acre of Arizona desert costs, but I’m darn sure a solar PV farm in New York State isn’t viable because the land is expensive (even ignoring the fact that NY isn’t as sunny as AZ).

    I live in the vicinity of Toronto. Suppose I buy cheap solar PV panels, put them on my roof, do all the work myself because I can, and already have an inverter. So, basically everything but the panels for free. Electricity would just about have to double in price for the exercise to be worthwhile. I can do much better with a few efficiency upgrades to reduce my energy usage. That’s significant because I’ve already picked all the low hanging fruit.

    • You hit the nail on the head. To make solar work, you only need to raise prices on power. Don’t give them any great ideas. Amazing that the public in places like Europe are happy when they save a few cents off of their 25-30 cents/kWh. They don’t realize they should be paying 10-12 cents/kwh when you don’t waste money on unreliable power sources.

      • Don’t give them any great ideas.

        They’re not dumb. That’s the idea behind carbon taxes.

        There’s a difference between stupid and insane. The left, with its love of abstraction, is removed from reality in a manner that mimics schizophrenia.

  4. David

    “Juan Cole of Common Dreams (s (a?) socialist rage) is always good for a laugh.”

  5. “David

    “Are EIA projections always right? No. They’re “projections”. EIA totally missed the Shale Revolution. If frac’ing was a unicorn, then Juan Cole’s fantasy woukd (would?) be a projection.”

    You should be able to see this in about 6 hours…(10:00 et) LOL

  6. Solar and wind are free?
    a) Not when governments decide to tax them to replace declining revenues from fossil fuels.
    b) Not when governments introduce a recycling fee to cover the cost of disposing of end of life solar panels and wind turbines.

    • Our harlot of a town is now disposing of turbine blades because “we have millions of cubic feet of space available at the landfill”. Why then they are building a baler to compact the trash no one seems to know. Except the usual crony capitalism or something like that. Of course the landfill makes a few bucks (reportedly $675,000) using up landfill space that citizens of the county own. Which means someone (no information on where the blades are coming from) pays that $675,000 per year. I have no idea where the turbine blades are coming from and no one is saying. So, yeah, you have to find a patsy to take the blades and then pay for burying them somewhere with huge amounts of landfill space.

      The landfill is cutting the blades into smaller pieces for storing until burying. Looking at the pieces, one wonders why the blades are not taken to LA, painted and spruced up a bit, and used for housing the homeless. At least then one thing good would come out of the mess.

  7. David,
    Your article, with facts and figures to debunk outrageous lies by Socialist coddling Democrats, is excellent.
    However, the government statistics lump variable, intermittent wind and solar together with steady, dispatchable other sources of electricity, as if they are equivalent. The government is making a very serious misrepresentation.

    Wind and solar are cripples. They cannot be on the grid without the support of the other generators and batteries.
    The more wind and solar, the more such support and the more batteries.
    That support and batteries and grid extensions to connect all that wind and solar does not come for free. It is about 3 to 3.5 c/kWh
    The more wind and solar the higher that cost becomes.
    Wind and solar cmpetitive? Sure, when the moon turns to cheese.

    • It’s impossible to “lump” things without some misrepresentation. Many of the EIA tables will break it out into hydroelectric and non-hydroelectric renewables.

      It makes more sense to classify sources as dispatchable and non-dispatchable

      For LCOE calculations, EIA classifies hydroelectric as non-dispatchable because its diapatchability is often seasonal… and it still gets lumped in with wind and solar.

      Wind and solar can be sort of competitive in some areas under certain conditions. Wind doesn’t suck in Texas. Solar doesn’t totally suck in Arizona. But gas kicks @$$ everywhere except Hawaii.

      • David,

        Texas wind benefitted from $7 billion of transmission from Panhandle to population centers in the east

        Add that cost to wind instead of household electric bills, wind would not look so good, plus the cost of having other generators inefficiently perform at part load, ramping up and down, and making more start stops, all while producing less!!

        Wind sucks in Texas as well, if all direct and indirect costs are included.

        Anyway Texas and Arizona are about 10% of the US.

        If wind and solar sort of marginally suck in those states, then they suck major elsewhere, especially in New England and the US northwest.
        http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/cost-shifting-is-the-name-of-the-game-regarding-wind-and-solar

        • You have to keep in mind that when Texas made that decision, natural gas was over $8/mmBtu and our electricity rates were higher than the national average. We don’t have a serious problem with inefficient peaker generation because, even though the winds are seasonal, they don’t crater like solar does in the late afternoon.

          If they knew that a few years later, natural gas would be barely above $2/mmBtu… That money might not have been spent on the transmission lines. Ultimately that cost does hit our electric bills and/or taxes. Texas wind power operators also raked in about $13 billion worth of transferable tax credits. If the folks in Austin could have predicted the future, our electricity bills might even be lower. However, reality is what it is, we can’t re-rack history for a do-over.

  8. I gazed at the right hand half of Figure 12, projecting the glorious future increase in solar, thinking–there is increasing talk of a coming extended solar minimum, of ‘cosmic rays’, and the potential for increased cloudiness which could make folly of projections like that, ones that nobody is qualified to make.

    Reality has a way of encroaching on glorious projections into the future, just as surely with the viability of solar-generated electricity is it did with Hubbert’s Peak Oil. For example, Medicine Hat is one of the sunniest places in Canada.

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/solar-thermal-power-plant-mothballed-medicine-hat-1.5137428

    OTOH, some projections are always end up being true; note in the Medicine Hat example of another grand idea of politicians, just who took the bath when it failed.

  9. Still raging against the dying of the light, I see.

    You can rant and rave all you like, but the cost of PV has plummeted in the last decade, it is much cheaper than coal. PV works great during daytime, requires no storage, and daytime just happens to be the peak demand portion of the 24 hour day. Wind too tends to peak in the daylight hours, though it also continues all night long. Storage is no big deal – either use battery banks, or use renewables to store energy in hydrogen, which is a fantastic vehicle fuel.

    Renewables will never replace all other power sources .. and does not need to. The silly dreamers who think it can are certainly worth mocking. But you mock yourselves when you rant and rave against reality.

    In my state of Florida, our largest electric utility, Florida Power and Light, is also the world’s largest producer of renewable energy, the majority of that being PV. And our electric rates are among the lowest in the nation, 9 point something cents per KW-hr. FPL is a very well managed utility, and they deliver the goods at an attractive price point. They also use nuclear and a lot of combined cycle natural gas, and are now virtually devoid of coal-fueled power.

    Coal is going down, there is no doubt about it. Coal will not completely disappear, but the source that used to account for well over half of all US electrical power generation is now headed down to less than 20%. You cannot deny that, no matter how much you rant and rave and mock as “stupid” all those people who are living in the real world and do not attempt to deny reality.

    Stick to the science of climate change – that is where this site and its writers and editors are on firm ground. But every time you guys go off on one of your silly anti-renewables rants, you simply discredit yourselves as raving deniers of reality.

    • Duane:
      Still raging against the dying of the light, I see.

      You can rant and rave all you like, but the cost of PV has plummeted in the last decade, it is much cheaper than coal. PV works great during daytime, requires no storage, and daytime just happens to be the peak demand portion of the 24 hour day. Wind too tends to peak in the daylight hours, though it also continues all night long. Storage is no big deal – either use battery banks, or use renewables to store energy in hydrogen, which is a fantastic vehicle fuel.

      Vox:

      Demand for electricity varies throughout the day, but it does so in fairly predictable ways. It rises in the morning to a little hump before noon, levels out over midday, and then rises to a higher hump in the evening, when everyone gets home from work and turns on their TVs and stoves.

      Demand is highest from late afternoon through early evening, when people are generally getting home from work.

      ercot demand

      California is even more skewed towards the early evening…
      cal demand
      Scientific American

      Demand peaks when solar output is falling off…

      US EIA

      This causes the “Duck Curve”…

      Wikipedia

      Which worsens, with each MW of solar added to the grid…

      NREL

      One of the solutions suggested was to make more accurate estimates of distributed solar power to avoid deploying too much utility scale solar power.

      Duane:
      Renewables will never replace all other power sources .. and does not need to. The silly dreamers who think it can are certainly worth mocking. But you mock yourselves when you rant and rave against reality.

      The post was nothing but reality, apart from the Common Dreams quotes… Try reading it.

      Duane:
      In my state of Florida, our largest electric utility, Florida Power and Light, is also the world’s largest producer of renewable energy, the majority of that being PV. And our electric rates are among the lowest in the nation, 9 point something cents per KW-hr. FPL is a very well managed utility, and they deliver the goods at an attractive price point. They also use nuclear and a lot of combined cycle natural gas, and are now virtually devoid of coal-fueled power.

      FPL is very well managed. However, the average residential rate in Florida is $11.7¢/kWh… a little below the the national average (13¢/kWh) and about the same as Texas (12¢/kWh), maybe we have too much wind afterall…

      US EIA

      The vast majority of Florida’s electricity comes from natural gas-fired generation and coal-fired generation currently tops nonhydroelectric renewables by a wide margin.  Solar power is a subset of nonhydroelectric renewables.

      US EIA

      Duane:
      Coal is going down, there is no doubt about it. Coal will not completely disappear, but the source that used to account for well over half of all US electrical power generation is now headed down to less than 20%. You cannot deny that, no matter how much you rant and rave and mock as “stupid” all those people who are living in the real world and do not attempt to deny reality.

      Deny it? I wrote that in the post… Try reading it.

      Duane:
      Stick to the science of climate change – that is where this site and its writers and editors are on firm ground. But every time you guys go off on one of your silly anti-renewables rants, you simply discredit yourselves as raving deniers of reality.

      wpid-data-laughs-o.gif Duane, Data is laughing at you.

       

      • David and Duane: A bit late, but had to dig up the data. I am serviced by both FPL and JEA in NE Florida (Duval and Putnam counties). My last FPL bill was at 14.5 cents per kWh, while JEA was 12 cents per kWh, both for “residential” service and both include all charges.

        David: Thanks for the “Duck Curve” presentation. I had struggled to understand the curves, but finally I “saw the problem”. But, I now remain confused as how anyone can effectively supply to that load variation…

        • My Dad’s family is from Putnam County, Pomona Park, Crescent City, Palatka. I spent a lot of time in Pomona Park as a kid back in the Pleistocene.

          The only effective way to address the Duck Curve is battery storage, which doubles (or more) the cost per kWh… or more gas peaker power plants, which are also expensive per kWh.

          • Lordy mercy, do I ever know the Pomona Park “Middletons”. Great people; particularly Bob Middleton, who helped me out a number of times over the years…
            And, thanks for the response. For some reason (?) I had forgotten the battery “solution”…

          • Senior or Junior?

            Robert Clester Middleton Sr. was Uncle Gator to me… My Dad’s younger brother. Long time mayor of Pomona Park, WWII USMC veteran, wounded on Iwo Jima.

            Robert Clester Middleton Jr. is cousin Bobby… Also a USMC combat veteran, Viet Nam.

        • David: “Uncle Gator” lives directly across the southern pool of Lake Broward from my cabin; “Cousin Bobby” and “Cousin Rick” live at the north end of the lake. Uncle Gator helped me recover from a downed tree that threatened my J3Cub on floats, but Bob helped me in a number of ways while I owned the cabin property on Lake Broward in Pomona Park…

          • My favorite aunt, uncle and cousins… And I have (or had) a lot of aunts, uncles and cousins in and around Pomona Park. Unfortunately, over the past 35 years or so, since I moved to Texas from Connecticut, I would only get to see them at weddings and funerals, mostly funerals. Gator and Loretta passed away some time ago. The last time I saw all four brothers, Bobby, Billy, Ricky and Ronnie was my brother-in-laws funeral 10 years ago. I have a lot of great childhood memories of Pomona Park, Lake Broward and granddaddy’s old ramshackle farm house.

            I keep in touch with Rick, Lee (John/Worth’s son), Leslie (Danny’s daughter) and some of the Newton’s on Facebook, about the only use I have for it.

            Funny story about the Newton’s. After WWII, my Dad, John (Worth) and Robert (Gator) moved to Connecticut and they each bought four lots on street in a little town called New Fairfield. The town named the street Middleton Dr. I grew up on Middleton Dr. My Dad’s (Wade Downing Sr.) first wife passed away after Buzz was born. So, Dottie and Buzz had a different mother than me and my younger brother. My dad’s first wife was Eddie Newton’s sister. So, Dottie and Buzz were double first cousins with the Newton kids.

            Gator and Loretta moved back to Florida, before Ricky was born, but Billy was born in Connecticut, I think Bobby was born before they left Florida… Billy would never admit to being born in Connecticut… because it made him a Yankee. I freely admit it… But I got the hell out as soon as I could… LOL!

    • Duane,
      FPL has upgraded both it’s nuclear plants and is in the process of licensing and operating 2 more. That will produce enough energy to supply almost 4 million homes. But since nuclear is not considered a renewable power source it doesn’t count. Nuclear programs like FPL’s are clearly the proper way to go to create long term, reliable and low cost energy. Wasting time, effort and resources chasing the wind and solar options should be the subject of critical examination.

    • Lol…..I don’t know where you get your information on the size, scale and cost of Florida’s power generation but this site contradicts your implying that PV and other “renewables” make up the largest share power generation…..your electric rates are low because Natural Gas, Coal and Nuclear power up the vast sources of power……..https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_power_stations_in_Florida….Wind and solar will continue to be niche sources of energy. The bottom line is what your electric bill residential or commercial says at the end of the billing cycle…… mine is 8.6 cent per KWH here in Kentucky.

      • He just makes it up out of thin air, because not one word of it is factual.
        He writes that crap without bothering to even glance at a single reference.
        Literally not one word of what he wrote is truthful or factual…and he says that crap while being gratuitously insulting.
        Simply stated…Duane is a f$%#ing asshole.

    • Duane, when PG&E in California decided to bow to intense political pressure and announce the closure of Diablo Canyon by 2025, the CEO claimed that reaching a target of 70% renewable electricity for California by 2030 was easily achieved, with little adverse impact on the cost of electricity.

      Would you make a similar claim for the state of Florida; i.e., that a target of 70% renewable electricity for Florida by 2030 is easily achieved, with little adverse impact on the cost of electricity?

      • the CEO claimed that reaching a target of 70% renewable electricity for California by 2030 was easily achieved, with little adverse impact on the cost of electricity.

        Of course, it will require more extensive rolling brown and black outs. It may be possible to reach 70%, but that doesn’t mean that electricity generation will keep up with demand, it just means that other sources aren’t as plentiful.

        • Florida has zero chance of meeting anything like 1% of our demand with in state produced wind or solar.
          Florida has officially zero megawatts of wind potential in the whole huge 53,000+ square mile state.

    • Duane, you are laughably wrong, as you often are, regarding many of your comments here.
      You just make crap up, and when you do, it is gallingly commonplace for you to mix in a liberal dose of insulting invective when you do so.
      You claim FPL is the worlds largest producer of renewable energy.
      That is so far from being true it is astounding anyone could think it.
      FPL is the largest producer of solar power in FLORIDA!
      Their installed capacity is 635 megawatts.
      There are dozens of single solar power plants that exceed this amount, and that was in 2017.
      Some of have as much as 3 times the nameplate rating as FPL.
      Florida has almost no wind capacity compared to the places that make a lot of it. Thank God.
      Their web site does not even have it listed as one of the ways they make power.
      FPL at 635 MW of name plate solar installed (according to their website), is not even a pimple on the gnat on the buffaloes ass of the large producers in the world. Siemens produces 240,958 Megawatts.
      GE about half that amount.
      There are dozens of companies in the US alone, and hundreds on the world, that make more renewable power than FPL.

      As for being the cheapest power in the nation: FPL is one of the cheapest suppliers in FLORIDA!
      My rate is lower than FPL, being that I am in a co-op.
      I think maybe you read something in 2003, when FPL made 40% of the wind power in the US, and think that means jack shit today.

      The fact is, Florida is not a very good place to make solar power…because it is very often cloudy on Summer days, when demand is highest, and land prices are very high, especially in the sunniest parts of the state.
      This may be surprising, but it is true.
      Most states west of the Mississippi are far drier, and hence have less cloudy days, and this more than compensates for Florida being further south, but also land is far cheaper and more plentiful.

      And it is a terrible place to make wind power. Land is too expensive. And it isn’t that windy, except in Winter behind cold fronts.
      Florida most of the year is the least windy state in the US.
      We have, rounded the closest MW, zero megawatts of wind potential in Florida.
      Less than Delaware. Which is the smaller than some counties here.
      We have, simply stated, zero places where the 30% capacity factor cut-off point can be reached, except for offshore.
      You should stop making crap up Duane, because people will call you out on your BS.
      I could include links that prove every word of your rant is false, but I am not going to let you skip doing some homework.

      But I will add one more stat from FPLs website, regarding the coal generation capacity you say they do not use, vs the solar you laughably claim they make more of than anyone in the world: FPL makes nearly 1000 times more power from coal than they do from solar, and solar is the only appreciable source of renewable capacity they have.
      In fact, FPL is co-owner of the single largest coal fired power plant in the whole country!
      Ha ha…you sure know how to be wrong, Duane!
      https://www.fpl.com/clean-energy/plant-projects.html

      Get a clue: When renewable producers crow about how much money they saved everyone by installing renewables, they are using accounting BS and subsidies to avoid being sued for fraud by saying so.

  10. Tell me load peaks in late afternoon here in Maine in January when the temperatures drops to minus 20 F between 11 PM and 5 AM. That’s why we heat mostly with oil.

  11. Problem is Obama forced many utilities to shutdown Coal power plants.

    Also, statistics can be misleading when you consider that some of these shut down coal plants were in states with Democratic Governors that imposed Renewable Energy Requirements that NOW have republican governors and/or voted for Trump because they lost their jobs.

    • Iffen that was a “trick” question you were asking ……

      The answer is, ….. the State of West Virginia.

  12. Remember Red state-Blue state and up-down arrows are now Pulitzer class reporting methods in journalism. They have joined “97 percent of dentists/doctors agree” survey result marketing as preferred tools of the trade.

  13. Hey, hydrogen is free fuel and you don’t even have to dig for it. Thorium is just about free too.

    Not that it makes me special or anything, but I lived in Scottsdale AZ for 4 years, and statistically speaking, it never rains and there are never any clouds. It is ideal, yet only a few houses in my neighborhood had solar panels and those were heavily subsidized and still would take many years to “pay for themselves.” Why does free stuff have to be subsidized?

  14. The problem, Dave, with incorrigible idjuts like this Juan Cole person, is that they think it is meaningful to say things like “the majority of all new power generation in 2018 was wind and solar”.
    It is impossible for them to realize this means nothing in terms of total usage, let alone that electricity is only a fraction of all energy used.
    They simply have no background in critical thinking, or logical deduction, etc.
    Their brain translates that sentence into “Most energy used is now wind and solar”.
    And so they just go around repeating it.
    Unless he is one of the people who knows exactly how meaningless the first sentence is in relation to the second.
    It is sometimes impossible to tell the liars from the stupids.

    • This is actually doubly stupid: “the majority of all new power generation in 2018 was wind and solar”.

      Natural gas combined cycle power plants tend to have 500 to >1,000 MW capacities. Wind and solar are usually less than 300 MW.

      Natural gas CC has an 85% capacity factor. Wind 30-40%. Solar 20-25%.

      This is what’s currently in the permitting/construction pipeline:

      Despite all of the headlines about offshore wind and batteries, there are hardly any of these even in the permitting process.

      • The onshore wind turbine figure of 27,531 is nameplate, is it not? The figure has not been reduced by a realistic capacity factor, say 0.3?

Comments are closed.