Californian Blackout Fury: “It’s Not Just the Heat, It’s Also the Anti-Nuclear Power Stupidity”

Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant
Scheduled for Shutdown. Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant. By marya from San Luis Obispo, USAFlickr, CC BY 2.0, Link

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

The utter failure of renewables to deliver during the Californian heatwave appears to be creating a surge of interest in reliable energy.

California Blackouts: It’s Not Just the Heat, It’s Also the Anti-Nuclear Power Stupidity

Activists oppose a huge source of reliable, climate-friendly electricity that could have prevented the rolling blackouts in the Golden State.

RONALD BAILEY | 8.19.2020 12:31 PM

Rolling electric power blackouts afflicted as many as 2 million California residents last week as a heat wave gripped the Golden State. (It’s apparently eased up for now.) At the center of the problem is that power demand peaks as overheated people turn up their air conditioning in the late afternoon just as solar power supplies cut off as the sun goes down. In addition, output from California’s wind farms was erratic. Currently, about 33 percent of California’s electricity comes from renewable sources as mandated by state law. Until this summer, California utilities and grid operators were able to purchase extra electricity from other states, but the current heat wave stretches from Texas to Oregon so there was little to none available to make up for California’s power shortage.

Completely ignored in the reporting is that California has been shutting down a huge source of safe, reliable, always-on, non-carbon dioxide–emitting, climate-friendly electricity—that is, nuclear power. In 2013, state regulators forced the closing of the San Onofre nuclear power plant that supplied electricity to 1.4 million households. By 2025, California regulators plan to close down the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant that can supply electricity to 3 million households.

The problem of climate change, along with the blackouts resulting from the inherent vagaries of wind and solar power, are an indication that California should not only keep its nuclear power plants running but also build many more of them.

Read more: https://reason.com/2020/08/19/california-blackouts-its-not-just-the-heat-its-also-the-anti-nuclear-power-stupidity/

Renewables have failed to deliver this time, and will do so again.

Californian anger at the blackouts will eventually spill over into action, the scrapping of renewables in favour of reliable energy sources. The only question is, how many blackouts it will take before Californian voters get the message?

210 thoughts on “Californian Blackout Fury: “It’s Not Just the Heat, It’s Also the Anti-Nuclear Power Stupidity”

  1. NV Energy in Nevada is also asking customers to fry. Why? Since we’ve become a solid Democrat state (thanks to California emigres fleeing chaotic California), the utility has been shifting to unreliables…er…renewables. Guess what? Not enough power for the AC. Who could have guessed that Nevada would be so hot in the summer?

    • We have known since ~forever that green energy schemes FAIL due to intermittency and diffusivity – we published that conclusion ‘way back in 2002. In the same paper we also clearly debunked the false climate crisis.

      The greater question is why so many politicians and citizens have been so stupid as to believe the global warming/green energy scam – and how could any rational person be this stupid for this long?

      I published in 2012 that there must be a hidden agenda, and now green activists are admitting that the climate scare was never really about the climate – it was always a false front for extreme-left political objectives – to end capitalism and impose a centrally-planned Marxist economy.

      So the real challenge is how to rationally govern countries where so many people are extremely stupid and gullible – imbeciles who will believe any falsehood if it is repeated often enough?

      Recently posted:

      Told you so, 18 years ago. We published in 2002 (see below) that there was no real human-made global warming crisis, and that green energy was not green and produced little useful (dispatchable) energy. Since then, our statements have proven correct, the very-scary predictions of the climate activists have failed to happen, and green energy has proven to be an expensive, unreliable debacle. Competent scientists and engineers have known these facts forever, yet greens have squandered trillions of dollars worldwide on green energy schemes that fail due to intermittency and diffusivity – and have severely harmed many millions of lives. For a technically competent person, this was not a difficult call – even children know that the sun does not shine and the wind does not blow all the time, and that we cannot devote a huge portion of our land area to solar and wind farms, especially when we already have much better power generation solutions. How did we get into this green energy mess? Green activists have finally admitted that it was never about the climate – the global warming narrative was always a scam, a false front for their socialist political objectives. The average citizen was easily fooled by this scam and they are now paying the price for being so gullible.

      We published in 2002:

      http://www.friendsofscience.org/assets/documents/KyotoAPEGA2002REV1.pdf

      1. “CLIMATE SCIENCE DOES NOT SUPPORT THE THEORY OF CATASTROPHIC HUMAN-MADE GLOBAL WARMING – THE ALLEGED WARMING CRISIS DOES NOT EXIST.”

      2. “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.”

      • Hello, Mr. MacRae. Ignorant and in fact just plain stupid people not only vote, they make up more than 50 percent of the voters. All political consultants advise their clients on the basis of that simple fact.

        A prime example of how this works was the lead-up to the American invasion of Iraq in 2003. I doubt if anyone in Congress or the American political media sincerely believed that Saddam Hussein was going to give weapons to terrorists, who would then attack the United States. That was stupid, but it worked as a persuader of stupid people, so the supporters of the attack (which were all the major media outlets) just pretended that it was reasonable.

        The trouble with the climate change/renewable energy story is that it works as a persuader for people with IQ scores of 120. People who majored in English Lit or History in college can be told that wind and solar will actually work, and they will believe it. ( I admit to a major prejudicial scorn towards anyone who has acquired a degree in English Lit. What kind of fool actually believes that studying novels and plays and poems by nineteenth century Englishmen might actually yield valuable practical knowledge? )

        • I was always befuddled by that. Osama Bin Laden listed the entities he hated in this order: Israel, the United States, and Bathist Dictator Saddam Hussein. To think Iraq had anything whatsoever to do with 911 was silly. The argument that it was an evil and repressive regime and therefore needed to be overthrown was likewise ridiculous. There were – and are – many other regimes that fit that description. Why not them too? And, remember, at that time Iraq was already under UN sanctions and rigidly enforced no-fly zones already existed over much of the country.

          Now, to move on to willful ignorance, a brief review of history shows that Afghanistan is where Western armies go to die. There was ample justification to go sort things out in Afghanistan – no question. But with a knowledge of history in mind, you don’t go picking another fight at the same time.

          • Hello, TomB. The best explanation for the real reasons that the United States attacked Iraq can be found in George Packer’s The Assassin’s Gate: America in Iraq. Essentially, the whole thing was the first step in a grand plan to use American military might to democratize the Arabic countries of the Middle East.

            The second Iraq War is a subject about which I obsess, not only because of the folly of the war but because of the media complicity in making it possible. It was deliberately implied that Saddam Hussein had had a hand in the 9/11 attacks. I think that, because most of the terrorists were from Saudi Arabia, the real reason for the attack was that the terrorists were angry about American influence in Saudi politics. Unfortunately Dick Cheney and his lackeys (which included the nominal president, George W. Bush) were able to insinuate blame for the attacks on Saddam, and went conspicuously unchallenged in this deceit by the news media.

            Getting back to the point here, the smart people in charge have no qualms about misleading the average voters. There can’t be a seller of wind turbines anywhere who doesn’t understand that wind power can never be feasible for large scale wind generation. People who can engineer and build wind turbines are perfectly aware that they can never replace coal and gas fired generation.

          • Ian Coleman – thanks so much for your reply. Useful and insightful information. I remember being opposed to an Iraq war at the time – for the reasons I’ve given. But laying the blame entirely upon the media may be misplaced. What convinced me to give it grudging support was when Tony Blair (so Clinton-esque and ever so much more erudite than George Bush could have been) addressed the US Congress. When he said that (paraphrasing from memory here) “We know Saddam has weapons of mass destruction. We know that he means to use them. How can we know these things and do nothing to stop it?” That’s what sold me. Did our media lie to us? Yes. But our “leaders” lied to them first.

            I – and the media – assumed that these people with the appropriate security clearances knew something that we did not. We were wrong.

          • TomB – there was ample reason to believe Saddam had WMDs. There were many reports of him using them against the Kurds in his own country and the Iranians in the war. I don’t thing all the victims of of those attacks died of psychosomatic effects.

            A popular tactic is to redefine terms without announcing that redefinition. in this case, redefinition results in WMD referring to nuclear weapons only. Despite having tons of oil, Iraq was pursuing nuclear research. Maybe they were highly concerned about CAGW in the ’60s and ’70s when they began their nuclear program, and purchased a research reactor from France. Very few people in the world believed they did not have weapons in mind, and the reactor was reportedly designed by the French to be useless for producing weapons-grade material. Nevertheless, the knowledge and experience gained from developing the facility was of concern to the Iranians and the Israelis, both of whom bombed it at different times.

            There was concern from the Americans at the outbreak of Desert Storm that observed convoys were moving materials from a suspected Iraqi nuclear development facility to Syria. The Syrian site that material was moved to was later bombed by the Israelis with American intel to support their effort. But again, maybe the Syrians were merely looking to develop clean energy to prevent CAGW.

            After Desert Storm, the US facilitated the removal of yellow cake from Iraq to Canada. Again – maybe the Iraqis had obtained it to develop clean nuclear energy.
            Now all you have to do is find someone who believes that.

          • TomB – (this assumes my earlier post made it). Despite such evidence, I am NOT advocating Desert Storm and the futile attempt at democratizing the Muslim world was justified. I believed at the time. It was a colossal waste of effort and lives. Destroying WMD facilities would be more effective and could be done with no boots on the ground.

            And I apologize for conflating Desert Shield with Desert Storm.

        • The willingly disinformed 130+ IQ’ers are most of my acquaintances, and 95% “know” about the certain dangers of AGW. CAGW and endemic racism is all they talk about (many of them being very very well educated and very wealthy people of Asian and Indian descent which proves the racism thing I guess).

          As Paul Simon (more than) once said “everyone hears what they want to hear and disregards the rest”. Our intelligentsia is convinced that a slave’s life in a Globalist Socialist Utopia (that they think they’ll get to help run) will be preferable to the freedom, prosperity, and security we enjoy now. I guess we’ll all find out…unless Trump can pull off a big victory and take back the House…and the Leftists abide by the election results (which as on 2016 they won’t).

          These elites either don’t read history or don’t believe the leaders of the new utopia won’t immediately “extinguish” the intelligentsia *this time*.

      • Your clarity of the issue is spot on. My premise is that it is now time for the “elites” to throttle down everyone else’s consumption since this what is ruining their earth. Events are not simply as they appear, as they are focused Information Operations (IO) to elicit the emotional reaction they want. Simply increasing the prices of essentials for US citizens reduces disposable income that is used for travel, better accommodations, transportation and eventually food. This is just good policy to them. And if this doesn’t get the consumable decreases they want, they will default to war as a last venture.

    • Hey, it’s not the change of politics. It is the increase in population.

      Try this:

      All new residents of NV enjoy NV tax status immediately, and
      NV residency of 5 years is required to apply for a license to operate air conditioning.

      The local Democrats will love the licensing part. Everything must be taxed, after all!

  2. I used to work at San Onofre. What really shut it down was lawyers for Greenpeace forcing a complete relicensing process to restart the plant. It would have taken a couple of years while keeping everyone on the payroll. Southern California Edison decided it was too risky and opted to close the plant. I suspect that the state of CA told SCE that it would be worth their while to close the plant. There were definitely illegal contacts between the Public Utility Commission and Edison executives.

    • Kevin, that is how the Greenies work, they force a scenario where the corporate analysis of critical paths/fatal flaws suggests that no combination of change/adaptation will ever pass regulatory review. The failure to pass regulatory review is because the intent is to stop the activity, not to make the activity cleaner or safer. You see this all the time in the regulatory attacks against natural resource businesses. Take your money elsewhere.

      • My son is an engineer working in environmental mitigation. It’s his work to help companies survive the green assault. His frustration is that no solution is acceptable to the greens and often the ones they say are acceptable are actually the worst for the environment. Like demanding that all “pollutants” be dug up and transferred to some other location. No amount of logic can make them understand that digging up pollutants disturbs them and spreads them, not to mention the risks of transporting to some place that just becomes another polluted area to be “mitigated”. He’s convinced they aren’t interested in improving the environment at all.

        • Your son’s thinking is ahead of the curve. Engineers tend to be problem solvers and while we have a world filled with incredibly bright and resourceful thinkers, non-alignment with the green agenda must be ridiculed and isolated (Alinsky). I always marvel at how someone who believes in protecting the natural world processes misses the fact that inefficient animal typically do not survive. They somehow believe that they are above natural law and that they will never have to face it’s reality.

    • Kevin it actually started in the 70s by Nuclear Scientists namely:
      Jack Lemon
      Jane Fonda
      Michael Douglas
      Meryl Streep
      Martin Sheen
      Kurt Russell

    • Well: There were the parts from China that failed causing leaks of primary water. The cost to replace the China sub-par material precluded the idea, leading to an accelerated fate — immediately stop now and forever in Jan of 2012.

      • Actually, it was a replacement Steam Generator (the heat exchanger that separates the hot water from the reactor from the non-radioactive secondary system to produce steam for the turbines) that was manufactured in Japan, not China. The problem was that the SG produced more steam than predicted by the computer models the Japanese designers used. While more steam is good for electricity production, the conditions inside the SG lead to more heat exchanger tube vibration causing wear and eventually leakage.

        While Japan has a reputation for high technology, this reputation is not warranted for their nuclear power industry. Besides this event, there has been a criticality accident and of course the Fukushima event could have been better mitigated had the operators been more proactive in venting the containment.

    • how much of this crap

      A lot. I have no first hand knowledge, but it is rumored that San Francisco is a city where dogs have to step around the human poo.

    • “Makes you have to stop and wonder…how much of this crap are they going to put up with”

      I would say a lot. Those who wake up to the nonsense flee California leaving a growing percentage of useful idiots behind.

  3. Any sensible State, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, would build several Nuclear Power stations on the border, and supply energy starved California at a small discount to inflated RE prices. Hell, just the spot market is likely soak up all they could generate. Absolute money spinner.

    Except, California is showing all the signs of becoming a failed state, and is not likely to have the money to buy anything at any price.

    The US version of Greece??

    • California has a GPD of over 3 trillion and if it were a country it would be the 5th biggest in the
      world. Greece has a GDP of about 200 billion. The two just don’t compare.

      • You are perfectly right, that the two does not compare.
        However, it is the trend that some of us are worried about.

        • Carl,
          Since 2009 since the end of the last recession the GDP of California has been growing at
          more than 4% and has been higher than 6%. Greece’s GDP has been growing at about 1%
          at most. The entire US’s GDP has been growing at about 3% so California is doing better than
          the rest of the US and significantly better than Greece. Which trends are you worried about?

          • We are a bit off topic here, but I will try anyway.

            I am worried about the trend that the happy middle class diminishes, while at the same time the poor class is growing.
            The GDP (per capita of cause) is important, as you mention, but the distribution of opportunity and wealth is equally or possibly more important.

            When I in 1983 lived in Oakland for awhile, I visited many areas of San Francisco several times. Apart from the odd hippy and wannabee artist, people seemed generally happy, content and with good income.

            When I worked shortly in Santa Clara in 1998 and 2000, I likewise visited SF and saw the same places turning towards a condition with more people in economic stress and way more poor people.

            When I these days see videos and pictures from SF, I am horrified to see so many people living so badly in one of the world’s richer stats.

            This is the trend I am talking about. A good GDP is great, something to strive for, but but more importantly: Shall the good GDP only satisfy the wealthy or should we all share a bit of the cake and ensure we have as few poor as possible?

          • The trend that everybody is worried about is:

            The Commissariat and State Central Committee ordering
            -what you can say
            -or not say
            -what you can do
            -or not do
            -what you must believe
            -or not believe
            -what you can charge
            -what you can’t charge
            -what you can buy
            -what you can’t buy
            -what you can drive
            -or not drive
            -how you must behave
            -where you can live
            -where you can’t live
            -who you must associate with
            -who you can’t associate with
            -what you can teach
            -what you can’t teach

          • 2 points:
            1) as financial advisors are always telling, past is not proof of future.
            2) During those same periods, the US as a whole was growing a lot faster.

          • The rate at which the wealthy are leaving CA is accelerating.
            The rate at which companies are leaving CA is accelerating.

          • Well, if you subtract the growth of a half dozen Californians from CA’s growth, then CA GDP “growth” is negative since 2009. So, there’s that.

          • GDP is pretty much meaningless. GDP doesn’t tell you about government revenue. CA is not getting enough revenue to cover its basic responsibilities let alone its social justice payouts. At some point CA is going to either collapse or its going to jettison its Marxist government. My guess is that bankruptcy is the most likely happening over the next decade.

      • If California is so wonderful, why are the fabled Streets of San Francisco covered in human feces and needles?

        Have you ever wondered why so many people are fleeing the State if it’s doing so well?

      • The point is: California is NOT a country.

        I can’t imagine it become a country (unless you mean Mexico like “country”).

      • CA also has a lot more residents.
        However, at one time Greece had a solid economy, then the socialists took over.

    • The Intermountain Power Plant project in Utah was started in the 80’s and fed southern California. I visited while it was under construction. Two 750 MW coal-fired units with two more planned. Half the power to go to SCE. Low sulfur coal from mines uphill in Huntington, UT. I don’t think the other two units were ever built.

  4. People have to suffer real loss to drive them away from the notion ‘no pain, no gain’. Those to whom the blackouts were just an inconvenience will not take the obvious lesson. Only if they suffered serious loss will people consider that there might be a fundamental problem in the generation of electricity. For Greenies like my brother, a bit of inconvenience now and again makes them feel like heroes for surviving, and even more convinced of the moral right of their position. Grid failures have to be more than an hour or two a few time a year before the economically comfortable will see them as more than evidence of their devotion to the cause.

    • Given the number of fossil fuel and nuclear power plants scheduled to be closed over the next 5 to 10 years, the level of pain will be increasing.

    • Fran, or anyone: How are those people/families who MUST have electrical power (for health-based equipment) coping in CA?

  5. The only question is, how many blackouts it will take before Californian voters get the message?

    Elon will provide the answer – California just needs a bigger battery. But that is a fake solution.

    South Australia found the short term answer was diesels. South Australia also use neighbouring States as two enormous batteries of infinite capacity. But as California has found out those “batteries” may not be available when neighbouring States have limited capacity.

    Before people get the message, they will be educated on Load Management. The is a process of adjusting their expectations on reliability to more closely align with the vagaries of the weather dependent generation.

  6. Do a web search on californians fed up. There are lots of reasons why Californians are unhappy, to say the least.

    Do a web search on california exodus.

    In 2019, more than half a million Californians moved to Texas, alone. link

    We have experience of what happens when the middle class leaves cities. Formerly, most of the middle class was white, so it’s called white flight. I would say that label is outdated. It’s middle class flight.

    Urban decay is the sociological process whereby a city, or part of a city, falls into disrepair and decrepitude. Its characteristics are depopulation, economic restructuring, abandoned buildings, high local unemployment (and thus poverty), fragmented families, political disenfranchisement, crime, and a desolate, inhospitable city landscape. White flight contributed to the draining of cities’ tax bases when middle-class people left. Abandoned properties attracted criminals and street gangs, contributing to crime. link

    Will California become the first state to be hollowed out? It looks inevitable.

    Some folks think middle class Californians are leaving and being replaced with illegal immigrants. I have no idea if that’s correct. I do have a hint for the Democrat politicians and their supporters though. Illegal immigrants (if they’re really a problem) don’t pay much in the way of taxes.

      • no they don’t. There is zero evidence that illegal migrants vote in any significant numbers in the US.
        Trump even set up a commission to look into illegal voting and it found none and failed to produce a single report. The US is lucky and should be proud that elections are honest and while they could be better run voter fraud is not an issue.

        • “voter fraud is not an issue”. Not if/when the Dems pass mass mail voting. Fraud will then be a big problem. Absentee voting is much different than vote by mail where every registered voter is sent a ballot. Many people are registered in more than one city or county or state. Many people move frequently. Lot’s of dead still on the roles. Easy to harvest those ballots and vote on the deceased/moved persons behalf. Just what the Dems want.

          • Recently a judge somewhere up in the NorthEast ordered a new election because so many problems were found with the mail-in ballots being discovered after the vote was counted.

          • President Carter once reminisced about one of his accomplishments when he was governor of Georgia. It required that a name be removed from the voter roles when the person had been dead for 3 years.

          • Why should the dead of Philadelphia be deprived of the right to vote? They are solidly Democrat, for some reason.

        • How would anyone know if illegals are voting. You liberals fight tooth and nail to prevent any form of voter identification.

          • Simple, Mark, they just do a random survey.

            1) Have you ever committed the Class IV felony of illegal voting?
            ¿Ha cometido alguna vez un delito grave de clase IV de voto ilegal?
            ( ) Sí ( ) No

            2) Si respondiste que sí, ¿estás loco? ¡Regresa y cambia tu respuesta!

            In the last four elections the responses were all in the range of 0-0.1%, so there! Just as Izaak says.

        • So you believe the main stream propaganda.
          There is lots of evidence, like they admit to voting.
          In this Elsevier journal article….

          https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0261379414000973
          Elsevier
          Electoral Studies
          Volume 36, December 2014, Pages 149-157

          There are many more reliable accounts, I have many links like this
          https://www.wcia.com/illinois-capitol-news/state-board-of-elections-admits-non-u-s-citizens-may-have-voted-illegally-in-2018/

          You are wrong, there is lots of evidence, the democrat media tries to suppress the facts.

          Electoral Studies
          Do non-citizens vote in U.S. elections?
          Author links Jesse T.Richmana
          Gulshan A.Chatthabc1David C.Earnestb

          • The paper from Electoral studies was refuted by “ The perils of cherry picking low frequency events in large sample surveys” in the same journal. It claims that
            the expected number of non-citizens voted in the elections was 0.

        • I call BS on “zero evidence”. Also I’d like a definition of “significant” please.
          “Trump Commission” – is that the one where the Dem run states refused to turn over any data?
          Are you proud that the clown Al Franken STOLE a US Senate seat? You know, the one he had to resign from in disgrace after he was caught fondling a sleeping woman?

        • Pretty sure that commission shut down because a lot of states refused to provide the information requested.

        • Illegal aliens don’t have to fill out a ballot to change the outcomes of national elections. The Democrats for decades have forced illegal aliens to be counted in the census – without being marked as be illegal aliens.

          This means those large blue states with large numbers of illegal aliens get more representatives in Congress than they should. This impacts the Electoral College by giving these states more votes in the Electoral College than they should have. It is a direct attack on the citizens of smaller red states that don’t have a lot of illegal aliens.

          Representatives are supposed to represent the citizens of the US, not citizens of other countries. Same for the Electoral College.

          It’s why states like CA and IL went ballistic when the Trump admin tried to amend the census form to identify citizen counts from non-citizen counts. CA and IL would immediately lose some of their representatives and electors.

          • +1
            The People’s Republic of California has stolen at least 3 Electoral College votes from other states.

        • Izaak,
          Please stop lying! If you want to live with your head in the sand or where ever else you keep it go ahead, but don’t try to spread falsehoods about voter fraud!
          Every one in Commifornia who applies for a drivers license automatically gets voter registration forms. Judicial Watch has numerous lawsuits going against counties in Commifornia because they were found to have more than 100% of their eligible voters on the rolls. If I remember correctly Los Angeles County had 110-115% of their eligible voters in a county that has a population of 10,000,000! That would be at least 500,000 to 750,000 extra people on the rolls and I bet they all aren’t dead or moved out of state!
          The commission you cited was stymied by all of the DemoKKKrat run states refusing to cooperate with their attempt to look into voter fraud. Tell me, why do you think that DemoKKKrats are so strongly against a national voter ID? Do you think they encourage massive illegal immigration just to improve the economy, or is it also to help support the drug cartels and human traffickers?
          The modern DemoKKKrat Party is the most corrupt and venal group of criminals this country has ever labored under but I’m sure they would never stoop to voter fraud!

  7. What is the value $$$ of a shut down Diablo Power plant. Not much I think. Why can’t we the people purchase this power plant and form a power company who sells electricity into the grid network. We must have someone out there who can realize this potential for our community and for our state.
    Why are we going into rolling blackouts? Maybe out towards Bakersfield we should put up another Clean Coal power plant so that this community can be guaranteed 24/7/365 reliable energy.
    California wants it’s solar and wind. Lets give it it’s own grid network feeding our expanding EV network. When the sun goes down and the wind stops blowing and the batteries are drained, it’s time to park for the day.
    We have to become Energy Wise!

    • Anyone wanting to purchase Diablo Canyon with the idea of continuing its operation would face a daunting challenge for a number of reasons.

      First, the current intention is to shut down the facility when it reaches the end of its originally licensed life in 2024/2025 (U1/U2). Prior to coming up with this “deal” a few years ago to shut down the facility, Pacific Gas & Electric intended to apply for renewal of the operating license and was working on numerous pieces of a “life extension” project. I worked there for quite a few years, and some of my work interfaced with a few of these projects. They were numerous, complex, and expensive. The company put all these efforts into reverse and backed out of them when the deal to shut down the plant was finalized, so they would have to be started up again. It would be a challenge to get them finished in time to continue operation past the deadline, and much of the work would have to be repeated (since it was undone). It is unlikely that the state regulators would allow the costs for that repeat work to be recovered.

      Second, as has been noted, the state government is essentially hostile to nuclear power, and opponents have had numerous levers at their disposal to force a plant shutdown. One of these is the state mandate to eliminate “once-through-cooling.” This would require the facility to install cooling towers instead of rejecting condenser discharge directly to the ocean, a vast expense that might even exceed the plant’s original construction cost. It would certainly drive a stake through the heart of its economic viability. The facility’s “intake” permit to discharge directly to the ocean actually expired recently, and it was only the promise to shut down at the end of the originally licensed period that got the state to agree to waive the requirement for a permit renewal. The seismic geology of the area was another issue that was able to be used by opponents to drive up costs and delay approval of various operating permits.

      In general, nuclear’s opponents have pretty much given up trying to convince the public that it is dangerous, and nowadays rely chiefly on creating issues to drive up costs, so they can then complain that nuclear is non-competitive on an economic basis.

  8. Math and physics take time to take their toll, but their laws cannot be avoided long term. And while many praise nuclear, the only type of power plants that can be built in the US without government subsidies will be natural gas. The US has very, very cheap natural gas so that seems like the only rational choices. You know when they talk about battery storage to back up wind and solar they remain in denial of the laws of math and physics. I am afraid anyone talking about nuclear is in denial about both economics and the current regulatory climate.

    • I think the economic of nuclear is all about the regulatory framework
      These aren’t two separate things
      Nuclear could be cheaper

      • Pat,
        coal would be cheap as well if you were willing to put up with killer smogs like they use to have
        in London.

        • Izaak,

          the London (and elsewhere in the U.K.) smog was mainly household fires until smokeless fuel was mandated.
          Coal can be burnt cleanly with modern furnaces, much as modern diesel engines emit a tiny fraction of noxious gasses that they used to.

          • Iain,
            Coal can be burnt cleanly but only with expensive modern furnances. It would still be considerably cheaper if power stations could emit more pollution into the air. The same is true with diesel engines, you can make them clean but it costs more than letting cars and power plants pollute. Companies will only stop polluting if you legislate for clean air.

          • For its lifetime, energy produced etc Coal fired power is FAR less polluting that wind or solar.

            The production of wind turbines and solar cells is horrendously polluting, consuming vastly more materials than simple coal fired power stations for the same energy output…

            … not to point out all the child labour, corruption and human degradation involved.

            Leftists, marxist, socialists, anarchists, facists, they all LUV wind and solar.

          • Julian,
            Biodiesel beats CNG for large vehicles like transport trucks, trains, buses already today, but needless to say can’t beat the cost of oil pumped out of naturally occurring reservoirs….Battery driven highway transport trucks require battery tech that we don’t have to get adequate range, but we have tens of thousands of factory forklifts that are electric, and of course, golf carts, all niche short range vehicles.

        • The problem with pollution from coal plants was solved back in the 70’s. I’m not surprised that you are ignorant of this too.
          The killer smog in London was caused by home heating, not power generation. I’m not surprised that you are ignorant of that.

    • Michael, yes totally agree. Our natural gas is so cheap, and battery storage so expensive, that continuing to pour money down the renewable (unreliable) rathole is economic suicide. Germany, understandably, wants to minimize their political exposure by relying too heavily on imported natural gas from Russia. But they are currently demonstrating for all to see the folly of depending on wind and solar for more than 50% of their electricity. Small scale nuclear modular reactors are currently ready for deployment in 2030. These SMR can be phased in over the next 30 years, and if necessary longer, if molten salt reactors aren’t perfected by 2060. The extensive global warming/CO2 studies, these past several decades, prove that if CO2 is actually a potential problem we have ample time to end our dependence on conventional hydrocarbon.

      • Please reference these “extensive global warming/CO2 studies” that “prove that CO2 is actually a …… problem”. Not a “potential” problem which is speculation, but an actual proven problem.

        Thanks,

        Drake

        • Drake, I’m trying to say that of the hundreds of climate papers I have read these past 15 years, none of them provide any evidence that global warming/climate change is an imminent danger.

          CO2 in the atmosphere has increased by 50% in the past few decades. There has been some warming, but the early models showing dramatic temperature increases have now been proven wrong. Concurrent with this lack of “environmental consequence”, Alarmists have needed to keep resetting the “tipping point”.

          Based on the environmental data collected the past 30 years, and the now available proof that early models were “alarmist”, we can safely double CO2 from hydrocarbon combustion over the next few decades. We can safely meet all our electrical generation needs for decades with clean burning natural gas.

          Likewise, wind, solar, and battery storage, for this intermittent unreliable off-spec “power” is a proven economic disaster. The technology is mature with only small incremental improvements left to be developed. Germany and California have clearly demonstrated that wind, solar, and battery storage is a fool’s errand.

  9. I’m hoping California stays the course. We need a more dramatic example of what happens when you rely on unreliable power sources.

    • I’m not sure how long it will take for some hard lessons to sink in. Ideologically possessed people can be really stubborn when it comes to recognizing the glaringly obvious.

      There’s so much delusion, it’s so dangerous for humanity that people allow themselves to have such delusions, that they are willing to not think carefully about the numbers, and the reality of the laws of physics and the reality of engineering….humanity does need to pay attention to arithmetic and the laws of physics. link

      The above linked article points out that, in Europe, renewable energy has stagnated or is declining. It seems that renewables can be a certain percent of the total grid without adverse consequences (except electricity becomes a lot more expensive). Trying to put a greater percent of renewables on the grid makes it collapse on a regular basis. The more renewables, the less reliable the grid becomes.

      It would be one thing if an unreliable electricity supply were merely a slight inconvenience. It’s a totally other thing if an unreliable electricity supply also collapses the economy.

      The other thing is that renewable energy doesn’t actually reduce CO2 emissions if you take everything into account.

      For whatever reason, the Europeans seem to have been forced into the realization that renewable energy doesn’t work.

      At some point, even the most stubborn California Democrats will have to realize that their renewable dream is just that.

  10. I’ve lived through many blackouts, all but one of them caused by faulty coal powered electricty stations (the other was faulty software). It really is very simple, if you don’t capacity plan, regardless of technology, failure will follow.

    As for nuclear riding to the rescue- say we started right now, $20billion, and a decade later (if you are VERY lucky) you might have some very expensive power, you will have to throw in endless subsidies to get there.

    Or you could provide the same amount of power with solar and wind firmed by batteries and hydro for about one quarter the price, delivered in a few years. This is why, where gas is expensive (Australia, for example) power companies, not governments, are spending their $ on wind and solar.

    Typical prices, no subsidies, for a kwh delivered from these sources range from about $us 3c, to $us 6c, and they are only going to get cheaper, while nuclear becomes more expensive as more safety systems are added.

    • Doesn’t seem to be working in California Tony. How many more billions have to be spent to realise your low cost solution?

    • Tony, Australia natural gas can’t be that expensive…battery storage costs for 6 hours of peak storage at an absolute minimum costs 3 times as much as the solar plant, so your 3 cent solar is now 12 cents. If you want a full day of storage: 9 x 4 = 36 cents for storage plus 3 cents to generate the power. Want to keep going, say for a week of cloudy weather? Get a Texas wildcatter down there with a drilling rig for a couple years and you’ll have a gas surplus problem….just like we do in the USA.

    • But Tony the full costs of reliable backup power need to be factored in for when the wind ain’t blowin’ and the sun ain’t shinin’
      That is, coal or gas powered generators or diesel.
      Just like they have in South Australia and now Victoria.
      $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

      • A few points, yes Oz has plenty of gas, but all taken by OS contracts, thus domestic gas is quite expensive. This is why as coal plants shutdown, they are not being replaced by renewables + Batteries plus pumped hydro.

        As for the expense of batteries- This sort of power, dispatchable in milliseconds, is always very expensive, batteries are the cheapest option for this- these are required for gas/coal grids as well. Wind and solar are good complements for each other, as wind tends to be beter at night. But you do need backup if you want 100% renewable, which is where pumped hydro comes in. This is expensive, (almost as expensive as nuclear) but it is seldom required because (see above). I beleive it can add up to 10c per kwh to the price of renewable generated power, depending on location-but, very little of it is required.

        The large electricity companies in Oz are not interested in more coal, or even gas, as they do not compete on price with the above options.

        • Tony –> “batteries are the cheapest option for this- these are required for gas/coal grids as well. ”

          Tell me where batteries have been used to back up coal and gas power plants.

          There is a reason capacity planning is important. There is generally sufficient excess reserve in the plants making up a grid that even a failure in a given plant can be absorbed.

          With RE there is no reserve capacity. If the wind doesn’t blow, no wind power at all. If the sun doesn’t shine, no reserve solar power at all. Batteries for RE seems to be the only answer yet the longer the time and the more power is stored the costs are exponential.

        • “… batteries are cheapest … wind and solar are good … pumped hydro comes in … expensive as nuclear … price of renewable … bla bla bla”.

          Just stop all subsidies, stop all mandates, make it clear that all proposals for reliable power will get fast-track approval and that the system will be run for maximum stability and minimum cost. You don’t need to think at all about what kind of power is best or cheapest or most reliable or anything. The market will do all the thinking for you.

        • If batteries are required for coal and gas grids, how is it that those grids have managed to survive for 100 years without batteries? Or is that once again you are just making it up?

        • Tony, that’s quite wrong for gas in Western Australia, which supplies around 40% of the state’s energy requirements at one of the lowest domestic energy costs in Australia. The other Australian states could also have cheap gas energy if they were prepared to frak their own gas, as per the USA.

    • Make wind/solar guarantee 24/365 power with huge penalties for failure. At present they leech off real generation, transferring the cost of reliability.

      The full-scale reactors designed by EPR are proving to be practically unbuildable, but there are signs that HMG has noticed and is making SMR noises.

      JF

    • – Add batteries
      – Add extra RE to charge batteries
      – Wind/Solar stays low so no charged batteries
      — Blackouts

    • Not sure where you got your numbers Tony ?.

      In Australia, it took 15 years to deploy 33GW of RE capacity into the grid, at a cost of over $30billion dollars, in a grid that has a peak demand of around 33GW each evening. After sunset each day, the total RE available to the grid is only around 2GW on average and about 8GW during the day (on a good day), but this is variable and it can fall to almost zero after sunset. Basically, you have a second grid of RE that can only exist by retaining the original grid of fossil fuels and conventional hydro. If you spent the $30 billion on HELE coal plants you could have added 12GW of 24/7 generation, which is far more than the realised RE generation in the grid today and it would have saved more emissions by displacing coal. Better still you would be able to retire the inefficient old coal plants.

      The point here is that even without battery storage, the cost of the RE that is realised is still much more expensive than HELE coal as I have shown. What you are suggesting is that by adding batteries that are 4x more expensive than generation, and introduce a 20% charge-discharge loss that requires even more RE generation, will make the whole solution cheaper.

      Sorry, but you need to stop using the Guardian as a knowledge source.

    • I don’t know what mythical place you live in, but I’ve never heard of a power outage caused by a faulty coal powered plant.

      If the complaint is that there wasn’t enough capacity to provide demand, then your problem is made infinitely worse by wind and solar.

      Nuclear is expensive because the regulations were designed to make it so.

      If solar and wind are so cheap, why do prices always rise when they are installed?

      Nuclear power is already one of the safest forms of power, new safety systems aren’t for safety, they are designed solely to make sure nuclear power remains unaffordable.

      • We’ve lost major transmission lines coming out of coal plants twice in 35 years. One storm related one human related (high power rifle). Neither caused the loss of the plant and neither precipitated a black or brown out.

    • ” solar and wind firmed by batteries”

      Batteries simply aren’t there yet. If they were they would be in use in CA today and they wouldn’t be having rolling blackouts. Batteries are only good for a short period of time. They are *not* power generators. The longer the period you try to cover for power loss the cost of the batteries go up exponentially. It’s why telephone companies don’t design battery power for more than a few hours in their major switching centers. They back up with diesel generators of some kind. It’s the same with hospitals and other businesses that can’t afford to be out of business very long.

    • Except that there is no “firmed by batteries”. There are no good places for pumped storage, and the good places for hydro are also taken (talking about California here). Even if you found an excellent place for a hydro plant in California, the environmental lawyers would drag it out at least a decade before the first ceremonial shovel full of dirt could by turned.

  11. The ONLY rational reason to shut down the reactor is because of the risk from a tsunami. Otherwise, shutting it down and losing baseload power is totally insane. Note, there is no CO2 release from a nuclear plant.
    The ultra greenies are a special breed of lunatic. Like the man, the boy and the donkey fable, listening to the rantings of these lunatics will cost you very dearly. Californians obviously need to go back to kindergarden to hear such fables again and learn the lessons. Come to think of it, those greenies never progressed out of diapers.

  12. Nuclear does not solve or address the climate change non-problem until and unless the transportation sector gets electrocuted.

    And the extractive mess and cost to do that is awesome!!

    • Oh Musk will give you a tractor for free, but it only goes 150 miles before it needs to be charged for at least 24 hours and you as the shipping company have to buy the charging stations at $1M each.

  13. “Californian anger at the blackouts will eventually spill over into action,”

    It won’t. They’ve had rolling blackouts/brownouts off and on for, what, 20 years or so? What’s changed? It got worse.

    • Sad, but true. The libs I know would rather roast sitting in the dark than actually vote for something else.

    • The last time this happened, California Governor Gray Davis was recalled from office. The resulting special election fielded 284 candidates including some actor named Arnold Schwarzenegger, who soon became known as The Governator.

      • That was probably the best acting of his career; he actually fooled a lot of people into thinking he was a Republican!

    • The climate changed – more drought, heatwaves and fires.

      what didn’t change is that incompetents are still running the power company.

      • “griff August 21, 2020 at 12:23 am

        The climate changed – more drought, heatwaves and fires.”

        Where?

      • Show us evidence that droughts, heatwaves and fires on the West Coast are more frequent than in the past.

      • In griff’s world, the climate on it’s own would never change.
        Any difference from last year is proof that CO2 did it.

      • griff,
        It’s simply called “summer” out here. If anything, it has become both wetter and cooler year round in CA the last three or four years. No “declared drought” since Gruesome took office; everyone’s watering their yards like normal again. Fires happen where fuels are plentiful. If plants grow like wildfire in the spring, they burn like wildfire in the summer and fall.

        Said ‘incompetents” are hamstrung by Green litigation if they plan to build anything BUT RE in CA, and required by STATE LAW to build RE no matter the flaws with it’s usable power generation. You can’t legislate yourself out of a crisis… but you can make it worse!

        • I’m not aware of the political/geographic nature of the wildfires.

          Does PSG&E lack of tower maintenance cause fires on federal land (national forests)? If so, then can the feds either order PSE&G to update the towers, some of which are getting to 100 years old, or can the feds seize the towers themselves?

          I would expect that a federal takeover would change the whole dynamics of the situation with CA controlling what maintenance that PSE&G chooses to do.

      • The last time the Bay Area had blackouts was in 2001, 19 years ago. San Fran recorded a high temp of 103 F during that heatwave.
        SF’s temp during this heatwave hit 95 F. Much more of this global warming plus CA’s energy policies will result in blackouts when they have heatwaves of 85 F.

  14. You know, I don’t want to wish ill on people but here in canada we need a fast, unavoidable example

    Our current idiot PM is wounded by corruption but he is planning to come back in September with a massive unaffordable GND so we need to show an incontrovertible example of how deluded it is.

    Sorry california but you seem to be it

    Better that collapse happens to you in a heat wave than us at -35 as we know cold kills far more people

  15. My friends in California just shrugged their shoulders and installed backup generators. Problem solved. Oh, and they still believe in ,”renewable” wind and solar.
    They don’t even consider how this extra layer of fossil fuel fired machinery further negates the thermodynamic efficiency of “renewables”.

  16. I think it’s easier to just move out of California then to try to oppose all the nut cases running the government. As long as you have people with nothing to lose voting for the people running the government, you will continue to get mind-boggling failure. This disease will spread to state after state, it’s just a matter of time. Think you are safe in Texas? Read up on Austin, Houston, and Dallas. Think you are safe in Montana? Not once the House, Senate, and Presidency is all run by a nut-case socialist party.

    Illegals have nothing to lose and at least some of them vote. Homeless can vote, especially if activists round them up and pay them in cigarettes or booze. Poor people who do not make an effort to better their lives have more to gain through welfare then work. Only people who actually want to better themselves (not the same as just enrich themselves) will listen to reason. Young people are mostly just a lost cause – some of them will eventually figure out they have been played once they reach their 40’s or 50’s – others will never figure it out.

    Then of course, there are those that just act like sheep and let everyone else do their thinking (again most of the younger people). Unfortunately, this seems to be most of the voters everywhere. This is why media is so effective at spreading propaganda – there is a low bar to hurdle to get people worked up and emotional instead of them thinking a problem through.

    So, I expect things to continue to get worse over time…they may fix the blackouts eventually but at a hugely exaggerated cost and loss of wealth – and then they declare victory and move on to screw up the next thing until no more wealth remains.

    • Robert,
      what is wrong with letting homeless people vote? Mature democracies got rid of property qualifications for voting centuries ago.

        • really? And which taxes? Do sales taxes count? Last time I was in the US I paid sales tax in several states does that entitle me to vote several times? What about people living off social
          security — do they get to vote? Or people not working but living with their partners, are you going to prevent millions of housewives from voting?

      • I understood that the WRONG he was talking about, was in the exploitation by way of a bribe of vulnerable people easily manipulated by political activists to vote a certain way, not their freedom to vote.

        Your question was somewhat disingenuous Izaak.

        • In 2016 only about 59% of eligible voters actually voted. Homeless people did not make up a large percentage of that total since at most they amount to about 0.2 percent of the population. Just how many elections were there in the US where the results were closer than 0.2%? If I was going to influence an election I would target the 40% of eligible voters who didn’t vote rather than the 0.2% of the population who are homeless.

          Where is the evidence that homeless people are being targeted for voter manipulation? And just how would that scheme work? You would have to persaude them to register, get the state to accept “park bench on 4th street” as a valid address, provide them with ID, then months later find them and get them to the polling booth. All without being caught and being charged with electoral fraud. That is a lot of work and a lot of risk in order to get at most a tiny and insignifcant number of votes.

          • I have no idea, it’s your word against Roberts, I care not.

            My reply was simply a criticism of your question to him, but I presume you do agree with the premise that manipulation of vulnerable, easily influenced people by nefarious political activists of any side of the aisle, is morally reprehensible.

          • The total number of votes equaled 59% of eligible voters.
            How many eligible voters actually voted is a completely different question.

          • Izaak: Jeez! Are you kidding me? Go to alot of places in alot of towns on voting day and follow around the man with the twenties…

          • The Green party in Montana is a bit peeved.
            Seems the Democrats started calling and visiting those who signed the petition allowing the Greens on the ballot this year. The Democrat representatives were very aggressive in trying to get these people to rescind their signatures.

            As of now, the Green Party is no longer on the ballot in Montana this year.

            https://www.foxnews.com/politics/dems-green-party-montana-senate-ballot

            So much for liberals respecting democracy.

            On the other hand, Democrats have been desperately courting progressives.

  17. How ’bout an interest in reliable water, too? You have 840 miles of coastline. You should never be out of water!!! Build desalination plants, like Israel has done.

  18. Tony, Australia natural gas can’t be that expensive…battery storage costs for 6 hours of peak storage at an absolute minimum costs 3 times as much as the solar plant, so your 3 cent solar is now 12 cents. If you want a full day of storage: 9 x 4 = 36 cents for storage plus 3 cents to generate the power. Want to keep going, say for a week of cloudy weather? Get a Texas wildcatter down there with a drilling rig for a couple years and you’ll have a gas surplus problem….just like we do in the USA.

  19. Interestingly over at The Altantic there is an article detailing how the the Trump administration
    is stopping work looking at how a better integrated electricity grid (the SEAMS project) could solve
    California’s problems. Better interconnects would allow power to flow across the entire USA and reduce
    electricity costs for everyone. Have a look at:
    https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2020/08/how-trump-appointees-short-circuited-grid-modernization/615433/

    • Europe already has such a grid – and is continually developing it with new HVDC connectors

      (e.g Germany to Norway’s hydro power; multiple lines from UK to continental Europe; Scotland to England; etc, etc)

    • OMG! The idiocy in the SEAMS report is obvious to anyone with a modicum of real common sense.

      HVDC links from the east coast to the west coast doesn’t help the reliability of wind and solar. Wind and solar die in the east about 3 hours before the west goes down. Therefore the links simply won’t help wind and solar in the east supply the west!

      These links will *NOT* help with CA’s energy problems.

      If we keep enough coal and NG in operation on the east coast *they* could possibly help CA with energy but these generators are being killed off in the east just as fast as in the west! Soon they won’t be there to help either.

      So exactly what are these HVDC links supposed to send to CA when it needs power the most?

      These links *would* help power the east coast when the east coast is see peak power demand. But where is the power supposed to come from? West coast wind and solar that can’t meet their own requirements?

  20. PC stupidity started in Kalifornia and spread around the world. Perhaps we will see a revolt against PC/green groupthink start here and spread. Hang on I’m 64. Probably not enough years left…

  21. Looking at the details of Diablo Canyon, there don’t seem to be any reasons to suppose it is at increased risk from tsunami or earthquake… Though if the worse case happened you’d be looking at moving over half a million people out for perhaps decades.

    However at 35 years it is approaching the end of its design life and while reactors now often have this extended, there are high costs involved (look at the French nuclear programme). It surely wouldn’t have more than 15 years left, with increasing costs.

    I suspect were this in the UK, it would be given another decade of life.

    • There is no “high cost” in extending reactor lifetime. The high cost is gratuitous. It’s depraved destruction of assets.

      Also, the justification for even more nuclear safety is nowhere to be found!

  22. Yeas ago, 50 yeas ago, the notion was that electricity should be available but not seen.
    A bit like the opposite of “children (Greta Thunberg) should be seen, not heard.”

    In many countries the went along with the notion. The put the cables in ground (where feasible), made the power plants smaller, more discreet and effective, they made the installation in houses almost invisible and had a frequency so stable you could use synchronous motors to drive your clocks.

    This notion of esthetics is falling apart when it comes to generation and distribution.

    But the deterioration has bin fairly slow, so the frog doesn’t mind being boiled.

  23. No.
    California will not have nuclear.
    They will not have coal or gas electricity.
    They will not even have biomass burning.
    They will get “electricity” from wind and solar only, 100 % clean renewables.
    Maybe the odd bit of hydro.
    Let this be enshrined in law for a thousand years.
    They’ve made their bed, let them lie in it.
    And the rest of us can laugh without end.

    • Correct. CA and places like Germany with a high commitment to Green Tech need to become pariahs and object lessons. Ratchet up the pain index and maybe the bird brains will learn something.

    • Correct. CA and places like Germany with a high commitment to Green Tech need to become pariahs and object lessons. Ratchet up the pain index and maybe the bird brains will learn something.

    • The Irish plan the same fate for their equally stupidly suicidal believing selves. UK gov talks renewables and plans gas and nuclear, it seems. Well, they have to power our grid from a source that can deliver the necessary amount of energy on demand, not like those other countries that can magic up the energy using some energy Gandalf who defies the laws of physics.

  24. May I leave the last word to the late Irish writer Flann O’Brien who said the best way to solve the Irish power shortage was for every Irishman to go to bed for one month each year.
    Except for the bakers and brewers.

  25. Conventional nuclear is better than renwables on all counts, including costs (when costs are realistically calculated), but Gen 4 molten salt nuclear reactors are infinitely superior to conventional light water reactors : inherently safe, irregradless of tsunamis or earthquakes or anything else – release of significant amounts of radiation are physically quite impossible (molten salt fuel freezes at below 650 degrees and reactivity ceases.).
    This is the future power technology : cheaper than every power source except the cheapest possible natural gas power. Molten salt reactors can “load follow” meaning no need for peak power generators, which are typically fossil fueled. Molten sala reactors can be built very rapidly in factories at less than half the cost of a conventional nuclear power plant. Prototype reactors should apppear in a few years and shortly afterwards be commercialized. There are no mysteries about molten salt reactors – they have been around for deacdes, but until recently they were impractical due to the restricted core space, which required weapons grade levels of radiactive fuel, a no-no. But no longer – molten salt reactors can use spent nuclear fuel (“nuclear wastes”) . And they can also be fueld by Thorium, although uranium is proliferaation resistant and should therefore be used. Molten salt reactors can come online before any conventional reactors begun today would be able to produce power. There is no reason to not wait for molten salt reactors.

    • Col
      I’ve got you down for Q2’2026 start-up of a commercially-viable MSR. The clock is ticking.

      Let me know when that gets pushed out. Or is that what your cryptic statement means?

      There is no reason to not wait for molten salt reactors.

      Does that translate to “There is a reason to wait for MSR”? How long?

    • Col, agree. Molten salt is great but regulatory approval before 2040 is impossible. Natural gas now, phase in small scale modular from 2030 to 2050 when molten salt may start coming online.

  26. The solution is to cut off the electricity to politicians and their homes. They must suffer so that they understand what their constituents are going through.

    Leftism destroys empathy while convincing someone suffering from it that they are, in fact, MORE empathetic than the average person. They lie must be exposed and the only way to do it is through practical demonstration.

  27. I allude that CA policy is like a “doomsday prepper” vs “minimalist tiny house builder”:

    A doomsday prepper for those that have not heard of these people is someone that has such an intense fear of the collapse of society that they stockpile food, build intricate yet easily breached defenses around their supplies, and create what they believe to be innovative ways to escape to their hidey hole to wait out their chosen Apocalypse. Usually resulting in living in a bunker prison trapped by their own fear and surrounded with their own waste. These people spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on their elaborate plans that have a far simpler and less costly solution. I.e. they let fear drive them into bankruptcy and utter financial collapse and if this is what they were prepping for–well it becomes a self sustaining prophecy.

    A minimalist tiny house builder is the exact opposite of a doomsday prepper, instead of living in a steel or concrete prison cell, they take all considerations for energy, mobility, comfort, waste..etc into play to build a small but livable space that can produce it’s own energy (due to it’s size) and deal with it’s own waste. Mobility is achieved through either building on a trailer or not achieved by building a permanent structure designed for self sustainability using technology, education of the past (i.e. canning food), and innovative waste management solutions–look up an Earth Home;after you get over the idea of living in a dirt hut, the waste water treatment is really freaking cool–to produce a sell able house for a minimalist. Now a tiny house isn’t for everyone, but it IS livable, minimalist lifestyle is not for everyone, but again, it IS livable and achievable on every level to your personal preference. But more importantly, it is attainable, sustainable (for as long as you can live in a tiny environment that is), and realistic.

    How does CA resemble these two seemingly opposing ideas? CA is more like the doomsday prepper. They stockpile with good intentions but not thinking things through properly for sustainability (not the dirty word version, but the correct definition without the implications) and instead only thinking about the fear that puts them into prepping and disaster mode. When was the last time CA was hit with a tsunami? How far inland did it go? Ok, so build out a few miles from that and on higher ground. Instead of stopping with, “OMG THERE MIGHT BE A (insert natural disaster of choice)” ask the question, “WHAT IS THE LIKELYHOOD?” and plan accordingly. Pretty soon CA will be like that prepper–stuck in their hidey hole of fear and surrounded by their own waste–although some would argue that has already occurred.

  28. The Brown New Deal.
    Give all the politicians in Sacramento a “Wag Bag” and then burn the human waste at the Mesquite Power Plant.
    A true renewable source of energy – California politicians are full of it!

  29. how many blackouts it will take before Californian voters get the message?

    Based on the record of California voters, a LOT more.

  30. I agree that it is blindingly stupid to shut the nuclear plants.
    But this post totally misunderstands the California mindset. The well-to-do will proudly get a battery system for their rooftop solar, and then they won’t give a rip whether or not the not-well-to-do have power. I’m literally seeing ads for this already.
    California is neo-feudal.

    • And none of them have ever tried to anticipate what will happen when they see three or more days of overcast.

    • Mark,

      My brother in law checked into a tesla home battery this week as lots of retailers are offering them up as an option for PSPS’s and black outs. The sales guys said that the battery needed to be stored in a controlled environment- between 65 and 85F. John doesn’t have HVAC for his garage and he didn’t think his building codes would allow the battery to be indoors hence he is going to stick with his small generator.

      Joel Kotkin has a post up at city journal on feudalism- https://www.city-journal.org/kamala-harris-california?

      • Interesting. Elon implied that the Tesla battery packs could just be mounted in the garage. Should have realized that was not quite true since the cars go to great efforts to manage battery temps.

  31. Izaak: Jeez! Are you kidding me? Go to alot of places in alot of towns on voting day and follow around the man with the twenties…

  32. California’s Dysfunctional Electricity Policies may lead to more Blackouts – Shuttering of in-state power plants, “leaks” the generation and emissions to other states. As a result of California’s intermittent electricity from wind and solar being unable to provide continuous uninterruptable electricity in-state, California imports more electricity than any other state as a result of “leakage” to other states from them to generate emissions for the generated electricity needs of California. At the same time, the states “green” religion remains adamantly against in-state coal, natural gas, nuclear, and hydro power plants. Can you see the conundrum the state is in?

    https://www.foxandhoundsdaily.com/2020/08/californias-dysfunctional-electricity-policies-may-lead-to-more-blackouts/

  33. Shut down the nukes! Maximize the pain index! CA must be come an object lesson for the rest of the country, especially with GND fanatics waiting in the wings.

    Bird brains can only learn through adverse stimulation. Negative reinforcement.

  34. On Stupidity:

    Nothing will change until the grid really collapses and energy prices are 3 or 4 times the sensible states. Because of the Dunning Kruger effect. We are all doomed by human stupidity.

    Most Californians are too stupid to understand and promote difficult reality, they prefer easy belief in whatever nice sounding PC nonsense is promoted by delusional zealots and exploited by the snake oil salesmen. Something they can all agree on w/o understanding, so are easily manipulated by lying politicians and the renewable lobby who bought them so they could have their overpriced inefficiency imposed on the believers for massive easy profits enforced by law for the rent takes.

    A simple legalised protection racket, a snake oil cure for a non-problem of almost certainly natural climate change, which has gone up and down all the time for milliopns of years in the short and long term, exactly as we observe it now, something any fool can check in the ice cores.

    It’s so obviously a racket because, if you wanted more sustainable cheap zero CO2 energy 24/7, you would build nuclear, the only energy source intense enough and generation plant sustainable enough to replace fossil use at the scale required in simple energy fact.

    If you wanted to end famine AND pesticide use, you would fast track disease resistant GM crops rather than try to ban effective pesticides while forcing a return to unproductive feudal farming methods susceptoble to crop failure from disease and pestilence as “healthy”. For whom?

    It’s that simple to understand and fix , but it won’t be. Because such rationality is beyond the stupid.

    Because of Dunning Kruger (if correct, which the success of the scientifically obvious climate change fraud against the available science facts, and the very easy to calculate physics and engineering facts of what can replace fossil use and what cannot, confirm it is.)

    This effect states that the majority of people are stupid and gullible, and don’t know it, even think they are clever because they aren’t clever enough to know they are stupid. Especially a problem in Californians, Australians and Germans, and all ISIL et al fundamentalists. All easily deceived then led.

    As a kicker, the clever people overestimate the stupid people and think they understand the truth when told it, but in fact they cannot.

    So the stupid people never learn from the clever honest people and simply choose between the practised certainty of professional liars for personal gain, a breed that are, in particular, schooled in te best private schools to know very little except debating and winning arguments. versus the uncertain reality of those who do understand and explain the complexities of reality rather than tell people what the truth is, simply.

    No contest there with the hard of thought. By the time reality kicks in the money has been taken, the energy supply crippled, and the guilty retired on the Billions in subsidies, from pointlessly generating resource intensive, expensive energy inefficiently, some of the time, enforced by law, also for acting as priests talking up the deceit, and finally the $Billions that will be made in carbon trading by insiders and banks, that reduces CO2 not one bit. etc. You can’t make it up. That’s their job.

    CONCLUSION: We are all doomed by the common mass human stupidity exploited by the few cynical exploitative snake oil salesmen, from Hitler through Baghdadi to Gore, who know how to create and disseminate false beliefs for easy power and profit at the expense of the stupid hence easily deceived and manipulated masses, and how to recruit equally stupid zealot armies fearful of the imaginary Armageddon, supported by well paid “expert” priests like MIcahel Mann paid to find a problem and promote the required beliefs, and finally a layer of wannabe psychopath Gestapo/SS/Inquisition style enforcers to run their inquisitions against any inconvenient truth tellers, because they are right and everyone else is wrong. Especially attack those telling the actual science few people can check, because most are too stupid to understand it. etc.

    JohnCleese explains the serious academic conundrum.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wvVPdyYeaQU

    On being doomed:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxqvwkmTNy8

    Comments on a postcard please.

  35. “Californian anger at the blackouts will eventually spill over into action, the scrapping of renewables in favour of reliable energy sources. The only question is, how many blackouts it will take before Californian voters get the message?”

    They will NEVER wake up, they are educated to follow their leftist master, that is why even now their response to recent black outs are few and ineffectual.

  36. Leftists have been so brainwashed by their puppet masters, it’s difficult for them accept nuclear power.

    The irony is that if the $7 trillion wasted on the bogus Wuhan flu economic shutdown had instead been spent to develop/build Thorium MSRs, 100% of US’s electrical needs could have been from nuclear power, producing unlimited amounts of electricity @ $0.03/kWh 24/7/365, as opposed to intermittent, unreliable, and absurdly expensive wind/solar @ $0.30/kWh…

    Leftists are completely insane.

  37. Californians only have themselves to blame. They voted the policy makers in , did they not?

  38. This is the direction and desired outcome of the Global Warmists and One Worlders who want to take us all back to the stone age … or current 3rd world standard …

  39. Ok, alittle late, but maybe someone willbread this.

    I think al, those predicting CA’s doom are not seeing the entire picture.

    How important is CA to the Democrats? If they regain power of the federal government, would they let the state fail? Of course not. The financial bailout is the easy part, but solving electrical shortages is not much more difficult. Using national security and defense as an excuse, a Democrat government would MANDATE that neighboring states contribute to CA’s energy needs, even if it means blackouts in these states. They would rather risk losing AZ and Idaho than CA. If push came to shove, well, Nevada’s not that blue. Rest assured that Nancy’s ice cream is not going to melt.

    If the Dems win, any state close to CA is at risk.

  40. I worked for 27 years for the largest industrial gas turbine manufacturer in the world. Their head office is in San Diego for how long was an office pool that is getting more recent activity since Newson took office. The company has a number of large divisions in and around Dallas TX. and there is a 4 section parcel of land adjacent to the one operating rebuild plant.

    The Green nut jobs in California have been on this road to failure for a long time. Back in the 1990’s California demanded that Gas Turbine manufactures reduce the NOX and NO2 coming from the exhaust stacks. On a hot day you could see these pollutants in the exhaust as a yellow haze. 200 PPM combined NOX and NO2 was the normal amount for a Gas Turbine running full load with no modifications.

    Engineering came up with a water injection scheme to reduce these numbers. De-ionized Water was injected into the fuel injectors at a pressure higher than the fuel pressure. This water flashes to steam and reduces the NOX and NO2 to 45 PPM from 200.

    After a while of running these water systems problems arose with combustor and injector fowling from unclean water. Cracking and failures of hot end components reduced the over all turbine life increasing the costs. Depending on the horsepower of the unit the de-ionized water plant would have to supply as much water as if the unit was running on diesel fuel. 10 gallons a minute was the required amount for a 10,000 Horsepower turbine. The costs of running and maintaining the water filtration and treatment system was an added cost of 15% of the operating costs from no treatment.

    The California greens were unhappy with 45 PPM by the year 2000. They pushed for 25 PPM. Our company alone spent 1.2 billion dollars developing a dry (NO water used) low NOX technology over the next 10 years. The Dry technology kept changing for the better and most of it was in the design of the fuel injectors and later heavily modified and more precise control systems. The conversion costs to our customers were usually handled during an overhaul cycle but for a 10,000 HP turbine the conversion to dry was close to an added $500,000 from the wet cycle. The original overhaul price for a standard turbine was close to $750,000 without the conversion. By the year 2008 the development of this system could get the emissions down to 12 PPM NOX and NO2.

    So comes the year 2012 in California the greens had a conference and they decided that the NEW emissions level would be 5 PPM. To go from 12 PPM to 5 PPM it was necessary to add an absorb-er system to the exhaust stack. Passing the exhaust through a chemical like anhydrous Ammonia to remove that last 7 PPM. The only problem with that is now you have this toxic waste product that you have to dispose of and the California government makes that disposal process as painful as it can even though they were the ones who demanded it.

    As a result installing NEW Gas Turbine generators inside the state of California comes at a cost that is almost of 150 % of one that is not installed in the state. My company since 2012 has installed over 185 generator units in states bordering California to avoid the higher costs of installation and operation and the stricter emission standards. The customers who did this were sending a majority of this clean produced power to California while the emissions were charged to the state of origin. Unfortunately the infrastructure needed to move this power the extra distances to market has seen a number of problems from the Californian’s focus on green energy. Rather than basic maintenance of the power distribution system and power lines these idiots have been wasting their money on non reliable unicorn windmills and solar panels. So now brown outs and black outs are going to be the NEW NORMAL for a while to come in California.

    As I said before it has been a long time coming and it is going to get a lot worse till the people left in California finally vote out these green idiots. If not they should get use to no lights at night and No air conditioning as well.

  41. “The only question is, how many blackouts it will take before Californian voters get the message?”

    It didn’t happen in South Australia, so I doubt it will happen in California.

Comments are closed.