US Green Impossibilities

Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach

A couple months ago I wrote a post called “Bright Green Impossibilities“. In it, I showed the impossibility of converting all global energy to zero-CO2-emission fuels by 2050. But what about a simpler task? A number of US states have committed to converting, not total energy but just electricity, to zero-emission fuels by 2040. How tough can that be?

Let me start by looking at the history of US electrical generation. Figure 1 shows US electrical generation from 1985 to 2019 by fuel source.

Figure 1. US electrical generation by fuel source.

From that, it doesn’t look too hard. After all, you can see that renewables (orange) are increasing.

But when we look at it by percentage of generation by fossil versus zero-emission fuel sources, we find a curious thing:

Figure 2. US Generation by type of fuel, zero-emission and fossil fuels. Zero-emission generation is by wind, solar, geothermal, hydroelectric, and nuclear.

Doesn’t look so easy now. In fact, if we continue at the rate of change since 2010, it will take 75 years to get to zero-emissions …

But wait, as they say on TV, there’s more. As of 2019, the US was using 4,400 terawatt-hours of electricity per year.

There is also a big push to go to electric vehicles … and that will require more electricity. The current US generating capacity is about 1,000 gigawatts (GW), of which about 675 gigawatts (GW) is fossil-fueled. By 2040, the US Energy Information Agency (EIA) estimates we’ll need about 1500 GW of generating capacity. This means we’ll need another 500 GW of new generating capacity to get to 1,500 GW, plus 675 GW more to replace existing fossil capacity. That’s 1,175 GW of new generating capacity needed by 2040.

As Texas has just proven beyond doubt, no matter if we supply part of this with wind or solar, we’ll need 100% backup. Nuclear is not ideal for this, but the new generation of reactors are said to be able to respond quickly enough to balance out the load when wind and solar fail. So either way we’ll need about 1,175 GW of new nuclear power by 2040 … and there are about 975 weeks until 2040.

Now, typically it takes about ten years to find a site, get the permits and licenses, overcome the objections, construct, test, connect to the grid, and commission a new nuclear power plant. Figure 3 shows an overview of that whole process.

Figure 3. Typical nuclear plant timeline, from initial study to final startup. SOURCE.

But we don’t have ten years per nuclear plant. With only 975 weeks until 2040, and the need for 1,175 GW of new CO2-free generating capacity by 2040, we’ll need to create a feasibility study, find and survey a site, obtain the licenses, design, purchase, construct, excavate, install, test, and commission a 1.2-gigawatt nuclear power plant every single week for 975 weeks in a row until 2040.

Anyone who believes that that lovely green fantasy can actually be completed out here in the real world, well, I want some of whatever green stuff they’re smoking.

And bear in mind, that’s just electricity. It doesn’t include the huge amount of fossil fuel used directly by industry, and for transportation, and for space heating …

TL;DR version? 100% CO2-free electricity by 2040? Can’t. Be. Done. Fuggeddaboutit. Not. Possible.

My very best to all,

w.

The Customary: If you are commenting please quote the exact words you are discussing, so we can all be clear on exactly what you are referring to.

An Expected Objection: I suspect some folks will say, “We need another 500 gigawatts of generating capacity even if we don’t go CO2-free … how is that going to be possible?”

It will be possible, albeit difficult, because it is infinitely easier to add another gas-fired generator to an existing generating station than it is to add a new nuclear plant. First, the permitting process is far simpler. Second, the site requirements have obviously already been met because there’s a power plant there already. Third, the infrastructure in the way of power lines, switching stations and the like is already in place, and only needs expansion rather than creation de novo.

This is not to say it will be easy, particularly with the foolishness of the proposed bans on fossil-fueled cars and fossil-heated homes and offices. Those unrealistic goals will make even fossil-fueled expansion of electric generation a huge challenge.

But it will be doable.

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Chaswarnertoo
April 16, 2021 10:16 am

But, but, but fweelz trumps facts….

April 16, 2021 10:26 am

As I usually say, the Green thinker have to learn first, what a pocket calculator is, what it is good for and how to use it.
But I doubt, that after these three instances they find down to reality.

Last edited 24 days ago by Krishna Gans
Admin
Reply to  Krishna Gans
April 16, 2021 2:47 pm

Remember, math is white supremacy.

farmerbraun
Reply to  Eric Worrall
April 16, 2021 6:21 pm

And there was me thinking that al-jebr was an Arabic word.
Wasn’t al-Khowarazmi an Arabic mathematician?

H.R.
Reply to  farmerbraun
April 16, 2021 8:50 pm

Wasn’t al-Khowarazmi an Arabic mathematician?

NBA player, I think, though I might have that wrong.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Krishna Gans
April 17, 2021 8:27 am

“As I usually say, the Green thinker have to learn first, what a pocket calculator is”

They have a calculator on their phone. They ought to learn to use it.

If they open up the calculator app on their iPhone and turn the screen to portrait mode, they will have themselves a scientific calculator.

Learn how to use it, and then realize that the claims of the Greens/alarmists are science fiction.

Barnes Moore
April 16, 2021 10:32 am

Thanks again for another superb analysis. One quick question – do you have the breakdown of non-zero Co2 contributions by type – e.g., wind, solar, hydro, geothermal, etc? A sad reality is that no matter how simple and clear you make it, few of the brainwashed masses will be convinced.

Barnes Moore
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 17, 2021 4:43 am

Thanks Willis.

observa
Reply to  Barnes Moore
April 16, 2021 6:31 pm

The quick answer is to look at the steady graph with hydro and note typically how our ancestors grabbed the low hanging fruit with dams. Good luck getting any more marginal fresh water dams up now. Doubly so wanting to flood any dryland existing high valleys with seawater for pumped hydro storage for the unreliables. It’s all fantasy with electrochemical storage.

Hasbeen
Reply to  Barnes Moore
April 16, 2021 10:11 pm

One aditional factor is that none of the existing windmills & very few of the solar panels in existence will still be working by then.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Hasbeen
April 17, 2021 8:43 am

Yes, you have to figure in the time and costs of replacing all the worn-out windmills and solar panels, too.

And then you have to replace all that windmill/solar panel infrastructure again about every 20 to 30 years into the future, and on and on.

Building Solar Power Satellites in space would make more sense, and probably cost a lot less.

Joe Crawford
Reply to  Tom Abbott
April 17, 2021 9:29 am

Yes, and beam it, tightly focused, down to California.

OweninGA
Reply to  Joe Crawford
April 17, 2021 6:03 pm

Can you imagine the damage that would be caused by a micrometeor hitting the transmitter and moving the beam a tenth of a degree. The nice transmission to the California desert suddenly fries downtown LA.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  OweninGA
April 18, 2021 4:12 am

I’ll have to dig out my old Space Studies Institute Solar Power Satellite Studies (maybe SPS will become a viable alternative, considering the absurd alternatives being proposed by alarmists), but if I recall correctly, the claim was the microwave beam was estimated to be safe enough for birds to fly through it. It’s not like a focused laser beam.

Last edited 23 days ago by Tom Abbott
EthicallyCivil
Reply to  OweninGA
April 19, 2021 3:02 pm

1) The rectennas cover many, many acres per MW, low energy density. (one idea was to suspend them over cropland or grazing range, they’re like a chain link fence.

2) Fail-safe interlocks. You have a low power guide beam, that if it goes off target, the transmitter shuts down.

3) “Phased array emitters” great beam steering mean that physical orientation is not strong coupled to beam orientation (the large virtual aperture also limits beam divergence)

4) SPSS will have a mass in the *tons* and lengths in the 100’s of meters a micro meteorite *might* induce a ripple (the structure won’t be all that rigid) but enough momentum to reorient some that size would likely simply *break* it.

Neal in Texas
April 16, 2021 10:38 am

Now, just add the land area required for the 1.2 GW of renewable power sourced by wind/solar and illustrate the raw area required. With a 1 GW nuclear plant being the equivalent of about 1000 2MW wind turbines (assumes 50% nameplate capacity) or ~10 million 295W solar panels, that is a lot of land. Figure 1.5 acres per 2MW turbine (How Much Land Is Needed for Wind Turbines? (sciencing.com)) 975 weeks * 1200 turbines / week * 1.5 acres/turbine = 1,755,000 acres (7100 km^2). Now, assume that even a 50% capacity factor is way to high and you can increase the area by a factor of 2-5? That is a lot of land being impacted for a variable power generation source that must still be 100% backed up by something else.

Last edited 24 days ago by Neal in Texas
Roger Taguchi
Reply to  Neal in Texas
April 16, 2021 11:38 am

Off shore wind turbines don’t need any “land.”

radar
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 11:51 am

They still require a great deal of space on the water that then can’t be used for other things like shipping lanes, anchorages, etc. In addition, sea based turbines require more maintenance and have shorter lifespans due to corrosion. Not a panacea

gbaikie
Reply to  radar
April 16, 2021 1:46 pm

Make freshwater lakes in the Ocean.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  radar
April 17, 2021 8:47 am

Those off-shore windmill farms might interfere with Kerry’s windsurfing. I think he has complained about this in the past.

Being such a hypocrit, he probably wouldn’t care if off-shore windmills interfered with the windsurfing that others do. As long as it’s not him.

chemman
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 12:02 pm

They still occupy the same amount of space on Land or Water.

ralfellis
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 12:10 pm

I doubt the continental shelf is large enough.

The analysis of the UK land area – surrounded by seas – was that there was nowhere near enough continental shelf to power the UK with renewables, and power the backup systems we would also need.

See my post on ‘Without Hot Air’ above.

Ralph

DonK31
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 12:38 pm

Try and build 1 of those off Martha’s Vineyard.

PCman999
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 17, 2021 12:26 am

…nears approval…. Don’t count your chickens… In in the green utopia of Germany, communities have turned against wind farms and are not letting existing ones be repowered when the turbines wear out. Might be better if they are promoted as artificial reefs – then the turbines will really help the environment.

Lrp
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 1:06 pm

Many problems; hard and expensive to build, expensive to maintain, expensive to replace (unless you don’t plan to replace them at all).
What’s your plan Roger? Can you draft one up, with numbers, locations, $?

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 1:25 pm

Taguchi
To be practical, power sources need to be close to the consumers. Without any ocean on the US northern and south-west borders, your idea won’t work there! Once again, you have demonstrated that you don’t have a good grasp of the nature of the problem and what solutions might be feasible. Also, many of those on the coasts will object to having wind mills within viewing range and ruining their scenery when looking out from their coastal homes.

Roger Taguchi
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
April 16, 2021 5:15 pm

The southern beach of Long Island is very near New York City.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 17, 2021 3:03 pm

So, your are saying that there is one place in the entire country where your suggestion might work?

Actually, you are probably onto something, although you don’t realize it. There is probably no “one size fits all” solution. We will have to be flexible and objective, and not driven buy ideological blinders, to find the best solutions for the future.

Tombstone Gabby
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 5:38 pm

Visited the site, read the article. Noted “Recommended” at the end of the article – to something in the New York Times. Told me all I needed to know.

beng135
Reply to  Tombstone Gabby
April 20, 2021 7:52 am

to something in the New York Times.

Exactly. Fake-news specialists.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 17, 2021 8:50 am

No, Roger, the utilities are not “giving it away” as the headline claims. That is what in the trade is called a “lie”.”

I love it! Tell it like it is, Willis! 🙂

PCman999
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 17, 2021 12:32 am

There’s too much generated when no one needs it but they still have to pay the wind farm owners for every KW at inflated prices. Please don’t be gullible about ‘cheap wind power’ – one has to look at the full effect it has on the system because of all the disruption it causes. Research which states have the cheapest rates to consumers and which have the most expensive, and then look at their main sources of power.

menace
Reply to  PCman999
April 17, 2021 9:33 am

And of course when the wind/sun don’t blow/shine enough the spot rates go through the roof and that cost gets shifted into your electric bills… and to avoid that problem, which will become more of a problem as more and more other states buy into the BS, you must then over-build NG driven generation and keep it standby to “come to the rescue” when needed but that cost also gets shifted into your electric bills

and this of course makes the idea of “zero emissions” a pipe dream (at least until / unless small nukes become reality and prevalent)

Climate believer
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 2:29 pm

Off shore wind turbines don’t need any “land.”

That is a frivolous point in the debate.

All wind and solar energy generation still needs to ensure that it has adequate conventional generation back-up to meet peak demand.

These are intermittent, unreliable sources of energy that will not be up to the task of running an all electric world of the future, that’s the reality whether you like it or not.

Climate believer
Reply to  Climate believer
April 16, 2021 11:38 pm

Example: Saturday morning 7:00am UK

Gross demand 27.5 GW and rising.

17.5 GW

FOSSIL FUELS – 62.3 %

3.9 GW

RENEWABLES – 13.8 %

Of the total installed windfarm capacity in the UK of 25 GW, this morning it is only capable of producing 1.5 GW.

Why?….. BECAUSE THERE ISN’T ANY WIND!!

Wind uk.png
fred250
Reply to  Climate believer
April 17, 2021 6:08 am

BECAUSE THERE ISN’T ANY WIND!! “

gees, don’t let griff hear you say that.. poor muppet will go into some sort of delusional trance again.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Climate believer
April 17, 2021 9:05 am

Yes, I was watching the service for Prince Philip on television just now, and every flag I saw was hanging limp for lack of wind.

Windmills don’t work very good when the winds stop blowing. Planning to supply society’s electricity needs with windmills is a fool’s errand. Hear that, Griff?

Our Western leadership needs to snap out of this delusion. Society cannot be powered with windmills. There are too many obstacles standing in the way.

Continuing down this road will reveal all those obstacles. Some are becoming apparent now, like the unreliability of windmills, and the large additional costs they add for consumers when the windmills are part of the power generation mix.

Western Society is heading for a trainwreck if the leaders insist on using windmills and industrial solar. And then they want to electrify all transportation and add that additonal requirement to the electrical grid. It’s just one ridiculous idea after another from the alarmists.

And all these ridiculous ideas are based on distortions of reality which hark back to distortions of the temperature record, carried out by political activists posing as climate scientists.

We are living in a Big Lie, created by the radical left and corrupt climate scientists. Some of us can see it. Some of us cannot. Unfortunately, most of our leaders cannot. We need to wake them up somehow before they do something rash and destroy our societies.

Climate believer
Reply to  Tom Abbott
April 17, 2021 12:23 pm

+100% agree.

Loren C. Wilson
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 6:32 pm

But they do require more money than reliable power, a suitable coastline, consistent wind, and people who will allow it. The project off of Martha’s Vineyard was delayed for years by the rich, green citizens of that island. Oh, and having lived through the collapse in Texas, you have to promise me consistent power regardless of the weather.

PCman999
Reply to  Loren C. Wilson
April 17, 2021 12:43 am

Quite right! I can’t believe that end users were given massive bills because of that fiasco – and it’s doubly maddening knowing that it’s the fault of the so-called experts who designed and run the grid. Some blame too to the pipeline companies giving in to green-bullying by re-powering the pipelines with line power (which is supposedly green because it is partly wind and solar) instead of the natural gas that’s in the pipeline itself.

ATheoK
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 6:40 pm

Those offshore turbines are anchored to the ground and have massive cables further anchoring them in multiple directions.
They’re just as much a waste of space bird killers as if they were built on land.

To date, end of life windmills fail to provide substantive benefit to match their costs and definitely fail to address the burden when they’re decommissioned and dumped into landfills.

Graemethecat
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 11:36 pm

Tell us about the vast quantities of concrete needed for the bases of offshore turbines, and the energy required to make it.

Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
Reply to  Neal in Texas
April 16, 2021 12:05 pm

You misread the article you linked to. The 1.5 acres/turbine is for the immediate area around the turbine for the pad, access roads, etc. The recommended design inter-turbine spacing is at least 7 rotor diameters, although total efficiency can be increased with a larger spacing. The average area used by current wind farms is about 0.5 sq. km. / 2MW turbine. This is roughly 10 MW / sq. mile.

Keeping the current spacing, it would require 500 * 0.5 = 250 sq. km to site 1 GW of nameplate wind turbine capacity, or 500 sq. km to site 1 GW of actual wind turbine output, assuming a 50% capacity factor (which you won’t get anywhere except West Texas). This is 193 sq. miles for 1 GW of output.

Contrast this with Plant Vogtle in Georgia. Total site size is 3,100 acres (12.5 sq. kilometers, or 4.8 sq. miles). There are two 1.2 GW reactors operating currently, with two more marginally smaller units under construction and scheduled to come one line in 2021 and 2022. With all reactors operational total plant output will be 4,664 MW, or 373 MW / sq. km. A wind farm by contrast produces just 2 MW / sq. km, assuming a 50% capacity factor, 1.2 MW / sq. km. assuming a more realistic 30% capacity factor.

Roger Taguchi
Reply to  Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
April 16, 2021 12:41 pm

How much land does Plant Vogtle in Georgia require for mining, processing and enrichment of it’s uranium fuel?

Lrp
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 1:11 pm

And by comparison, how much land is required for mining materials required to build wind turbines, solar panels, electric motors, batteries, grid expansions? I suppose you have all the answers.

Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 1:25 pm

Very little.

In total, the United States supply of nuclear energy in 2015 required approximately 1,156,195 acres of land, or 12.71 acres per megawatt. The vast majority of that land was used to transmit electricity. Activities involved in actual production of nuclear energy, including mining and physical plant operations, accounted for only 18.84 percent of nuclear energy’s total land requirements.

Strata

Chart 1: Land Use by Electricity Source in Acres/MW Produced
Electricity Source Acres per Megawatt Produced
Coal 12.21
Natural Gas 12.41
Nuclear 12.71
Solar 43.5
Wind 70.64
Hydro 315.22
Roger Taguchi
Reply to  David Middleton
April 16, 2021 5:20 pm

LOL, the land used to transmit power doesn’t care what the source about the source.

Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 6:33 pm

The land doesn’t “care” about anything. 12.71 acres/MW and 70.64 acres/MW are the numbers. You might want to Google the word “number”.

Then once you are comfortable with numbers, Google “algebra.” Wind had a capacity factor ranging from 25-40%, nuclear has an average capacity factor of ~93%. Assuming your brain functions, it should be fairly easy for you to calculate MWh/acre.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 1:30 pm

Taguchi
How much land does a wind farm need for mining, processing, smelting, and fabrication of the materials to build the turbines and transmission towers? Once again, you are demonstrating that you are viewing the ‘solution’ with blinders!

Roger Taguchi
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
April 16, 2021 5:21 pm

Same land used to procure all of the materials to make automobiles…..which already is in production.

Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 6:34 pm

You really shouldn’t have eaten so many lead paint chips when you were a child.

fred250
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 17, 2021 12:33 am

WRONG as always rogtag.

(are you deliberately trying to imitate griff in ignorance and stupidity?)

Massive areas need to be mined and are polluted for production and refining of the huge neodymium magnets used in wind turbines.

Also, HUGE amounts of limestone are needed to make the MASSIVE concrete foundations.

The building of wind turbines requires far more mining and is FAR MORE POLLUTING than any ICE automobile.

Last edited 24 days ago by fred250
Clyde Spencer
Reply to  fred250
April 17, 2021 3:17 pm

Maybe it IS griff in disguise.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 17, 2021 3:15 pm

You are demonstrating that you don’t understand the different materials, like REEs and more copper. You brought up the issue of a unique component, uranium, to provide power. Since you don’t seem to be able to read between the lines, I’ll be more specific. Alternatives to fossil fuels, ALL require unique components that aren’t in extant automobiles. That is, vastly increased quantities of copper, REEs, cobalt, and new sources of lithium such as through mining in Maine and South Dakota. Also, every wind turbine will require massive concrete pads, which increases the production of CO2 in the calcining process.

You can’t just wave your hands around and declare one approach is superior. It requires a detailed analysis of the competing approaches from mining to ultimate disposal.

beng135
Reply to  Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
April 20, 2021 9:14 am

The coal plant I worked at was rated 340 MW (2 units) and area, including coal-storage pile & transmission yard, was about 30 acres. It was beside a river and a main railroad line. Admittedly it had a once-thru cooling system, so didn’t need cooling towers.

Last edited 20 days ago by beng135
Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Neal in Texas
April 16, 2021 1:18 pm

Neal
The problem is more complicated than just total area required. Not all land is suitable for installation of turbines and solar. As an example, placing solar panels within the Rocky Mountains will reduce the number of hours the panels will receive illumination because of the shadow cast by the mountains as the sun gets low in the western sky. Also, the rugged terrain and adverse weather will increase the cost of installation and maintenance. Not all places are windy enough. Not all places are close enough to the population centers that actually need power to warrant long transmission lines, with inherent resistive losses, to be practicable. So, you have to eliminate from consideration all the areas, which for various reasons are unsuitable, and you will probably end up competing with demands for agriculture and urban infrastructure.

It is not unlike the unreasonable demands of uneducated ‘greenies’ that we do away with mines or place them where the land isn’t useful for anything else. They don’t understand that the location of a mine is dictated, first and foremost, by where the particular ore can be found, and secondarily by accessibility and proximity to water and power.

pflashgordon
Reply to  Neal in Texas
April 16, 2021 3:02 pm

You can’t pack wind turbines in close arrays. Optimum spacing on average is easily at least 25 acres per megawatt of installed capacity (50 acres for 2 MW units). So the area is closer to 240,000 km^2, assuming your other inputs are close to correct. I have seen estimates much higher than that. 240,000 km^2 is >1/3 the area of Texas. Of course, once you have built out the prime wind locations, subprime sites would require much more land to produce the same amount of electricity.

April 16, 2021 10:38 am

America needs to become Energy Wise. We need to use all of our sources of energy so that we will be able to provide all that electricity for when we need it.
America has an abundance of coal. Clean Coal Is Possible. Coal can be combusted and emit into the atmosphere less CO2 than what the natural gas power plants are emitting.
Lets use our natural gas for building space heating and by industry to produce and process all those items er consume daily.
Our oil is to be used for transportation and by those industries that require oil in their base products.
Lets use our solar and wind created electricity to power our growing EV market.
If this is done we will power everything for a long -long time.

Reply to  Sid Abma
April 16, 2021 10:42 am

Lets use our solar and wind created electricity to power our growing EV market.

Yeaaah, less circulation in the streets 😀

sailor76
Reply to  Krishna Gans
April 16, 2021 12:02 pm

Lets use our solar and wind created electricity to power our growing EV market.

We’ll keep the EV cars parked when the wind does not blow and the sun don’t shine, it’s that simple

Bill Treuren
Reply to  sailor76
April 16, 2021 12:23 pm

less traffic in winter perfect

Reply to  Bill Treuren
April 16, 2021 2:20 pm

I was in my French as I wrote “circulation” meaning “traffic” 😀

fred250
Reply to  Krishna Gans
April 16, 2021 3:51 pm

Krishna, Just for interest,

What is your native language?

… and how many languages can you communicate in?

Reply to  fred250
April 17, 2021 3:15 am

My native language is German, the target of the school I was after 4 years grade school / basic school was to teach French as second native language, with success, later Latin, still later English.
Some basics in Spanish after school. I’m used to communicate in 3 languages, in French I miss some practice now, but I know, some hours French radio or TV, I’m in again 😀

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Krishna Gans
April 17, 2021 9:12 am

You do a good job with your English. 🙂

Reply to  Tom Abbott
April 17, 2021 9:41 am

WUWT teaches well, thx 😀

fred250
Reply to  Krishna Gans
April 17, 2021 1:31 pm

Yep, doing well with the English… well done 🙂

Last edited 23 days ago by fred250
Editor
Reply to  sailor76
April 16, 2021 4:00 pm

No need to park the EV when the wind isn’t blowing. Just put a wind turbine on the roof and go for a drive.

Graemethecat
Reply to  Mike Jonas
April 16, 2021 11:42 pm

True story: I once met a Green activist who suggested this idea perfectly seriously.

beng135
Reply to  Mike Jonas
April 20, 2021 9:30 am

And also shine a light on the solar panel at nite….

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  sailor76
April 16, 2021 6:27 pm

No can do. We have to charge the cars at night. We are going to have to solve sun set problem.

Curious George
Reply to  Sid Abma
April 16, 2021 11:21 am

“Coal can be combusted and emit into the atmosphere less CO2 than what the natural gas power plants are emitting.” Once we develop that technology. So far, CCS has not been a resounding success. Damn that Second Law of Thermodynamics!

Maybe Nancy Pelosi could simply outlaw it?

IAMPCBOB
Reply to  Curious George
April 16, 2021 12:14 pm

Why not? She seems to be doing her best (worst?) to outlaw ever other law!

Meab
Reply to  Sid Abma
April 16, 2021 11:32 am

Solar would only work to power EVs only if there is a charging station at a high fraction of the parking spots where cars park during the day (when solar is producing power). The streets would have to be lined with chargers -businesses, factories, shopping malls, parks, and hospitals too.. Many cars don’t spend the day at home. You could charge some EVs at home at night with wind IF the wind is blowing, but what do you do if it isn’t? You still need backup power.

Robert of Texas
Reply to  Sid Abma
April 16, 2021 12:00 pm

“Clean Coal Is Possible. Coal can be combusted and emit into the atmosphere less CO2 than what the natural gas power plants are emitting.”

Not efficiently it can’t. The CO2 generated has to go somewhere. If you add on processes to capture CO2 on Coal, you can do the same for Gas. The real issue is why reduce CO2 at all. Coal produces a lot more real pollution then gas does, and this is why coal is less desirable for many.

“Lets use our solar and wind created electricity to power our growing EV market.”

Um, how do we separate the electrons that come from nuclear, gas, or coal from those that come from wind and solar? They all go over the same wire. Most EV charging is down at night when the sun is not shining. Wind comes and goes, but going to work still matters. I suppose your answer is going to be large scale battery farms which is an entirely new can of worms.

We simply do not need wind or solar energy for most uses – just niche. To power something not easily connected to the grid, or as an emergency source of part-time power for California homes that are under constant threats of fire and earthquake. Those sort of uses, not main grid uses.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Robert of Texas
April 16, 2021 1:33 pm

Robert
And carbon capture requires the expenditure of energy. Therefore, the net power is reduced, reducing the efficiency of converting fossil fuels to electricity.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Sid Abma
April 16, 2021 4:53 pm

Ahhh, here comes Sid, still trying to sell carbon capture to the masses. He never understands that this venue is waaaay to smart for that. He might as well try to extol the virtues of Hell to the Vatican.

Bruce Cobb
April 16, 2021 10:52 am

The Greenie Weenies are pros when it comes to the impossible. Why, they sometimes have believed six impossible things before breakfast.

Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 10:52 am

“A number of US states have committed to converting, not total energy but just electricity, to zero-emission fuels by 2040.”

Massachusetts aims to have the state at net zero by 2050 and that means all energy. see https://www.spglobal.com/platts/en/market-insights/latest-news/electric-power/032621-massachusetts-governor-signs-climate-change-legislation-calling-for-net-zero-emissions

“The legislation signed by Baker updates the greenhouse gas emissions limits related to the 2008 Global Warming Solutions Act, commits Massachusetts to achieve net-zero emissions in 2050, and authorizes the Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs to establish an emissions limit of no less than 50% for 2030 and no less than 75% for 2040. It also authorizes EEA to establish emissions limits every five years and sublimits for at least six sectors of the Massachusetts economy – electric power; transportation; commercial and industrial heating and cooling; residential heating and cooling; industrial processes; and natural gas distribution and service.”

chemman
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 12:06 pm

5 year plans. Where have I seen that before?

IAMPCBOB
Reply to  chemman
April 16, 2021 12:18 pm

Yes, and it ALWAYS worked so well, right?

Tim Gorman
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 12:16 pm

Massachusetts is headed down the primrose path which leads to perdition.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Tim Gorman
April 16, 2021 1:34 pm

Tim
One of my favorite aphorisms is, “The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.”

John Dueker
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 12:20 pm

Do any of these states understand the carbon footprint of building the devices and constructing them and disposing of worn out components. I doubt it. Considering the carbon life cycle of these “green” devices will show they are never net zero.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  John Dueker
April 16, 2021 12:55 pm

In Mass., hundreds of thousands of acres of mostly forest will have to be converted to solar “farms”. They are NOT counting the loss of ecosystem services nor the loss of productive forest land which was once an economic resource with thousands of jobs.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
April 17, 2021 6:27 am

And in Scotland it is estimated that almost 14million trees have been cut down to make way for windfarms.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Dave Andrews
April 17, 2021 9:14 am

That’s a travesty!

Gerald Machnee
Reply to  John Dueker
April 16, 2021 2:24 pm

Essentially they do not need to understand as the carbon does not affect the temperature so nobody will notice it and they think they are achieving their objective at whatever cost.

AndyHce
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 12:22 pm

Well, CA is well on its way. Already about 30% of its electricity comes from outside the state so any CO2 generated in producing it doesn’t count. That plus its internal wind and solar probably make it already 35% (a wild guess on my part) of the way there.

Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 10:56 am

Off topic, sorry- but:
“Greta Thunberg to testify in Congress on Earth Day”
https://www.politico.com/news/2021/04/16/greta-thunberg-congress-testimony-482410

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 11:09 am

Chuck up !

DHR
Reply to  Krishna Gans
April 16, 2021 2:36 pm

Up chuck?

Timo, not that one
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 12:42 pm

Earth day? You mean Lenin’s birthday.

fred250
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
April 16, 2021 3:52 pm

turn off all the lights and the PA-system. they consume electricity

Laws of Nature
April 16, 2021 11:10 am

That reminds me of that one county in Germany, which published how they managed to increase their electricity production to 50% zero-emission over the last 30years and with just a bit more effort they can got to 100% and lead the way..
lol they had built a hydro-dam in that period (but cant just build a 2nd one).

another ian
Reply to  Laws of Nature
April 16, 2021 2:26 pm

“Germany shuts too much coal, lasted 8 days without them, now admits they can’t close them”

https://joannenova.com.au/2021/04/germany-shuts-too-much-coal-lasted-8-days-without-them-now-admits-they-cant-close-them/

Ron Long
April 16, 2021 11:24 am

Willis, shirley you don’t mean to not start a journey of a thousand miles without taking the first step? Why not start designing, permitting, and constructing nuclear power plants right now, and then whatever other energy sources can be added to the mix as things advance is additive and gap-filling? Did you ever set sail without knowing where you were going? Don’t goof on me because all of the WATTS readers already know the answer.

Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 11:28 am

1) As of 2019, the US was using 4,400 terawatt-hours of electricity per year.
.
2) he current US generating capacity is about 1,000 gigawatts (GW),
..
3) There are 8760 hours per year
..
Your calculation do not reflect the fact that we are currently running our existing capacity at 50% utilization.
..
If we ran at 75% utilization, you only need to add 675 gigawatts of capacity.
..
Also note that you can build nuclear plants larger than 1.2 Gwatt

Last edited 24 days ago by Roger Taguchi
Erik Magnuson
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 1:21 pm

Getting electric power system load factor from 50% to 75% is a lot easier said than done. “Smart” charging for EV’s might help, especially if EV2G becomes common.

US NRC regulations put a limit of 3800MWth on individual power reactors (dates back to the AEC days), which comes out to 1300MWe. At one time the US had the ability to build 30 nuclear units per year, but I suspect capability is now lower than that. One lost opportunity was decision to not build out the Palo Verde plant in AZ to 6 units.

bill
Reply to  Erik Magnuson
April 16, 2021 5:04 pm

palo verde had a desert water problem

Roger Taguchi
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2021 5:26 pm

You don’t run a nuke at 50%, you don’t run a hydro dam at 50%, you don’t run a CCGT at 50% and you don’t run a coal burner at 50%. The problem with your analysis is that you are proposing using nukes which don’t run at 50%. Your analysis is crap.

Roger Taguchi
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 5:28 pm

You don’t add 50% utilized generation capacity with base load 95% nukes.

fred250
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 7:14 pm

That is NOT what Willis said

Deliberate misinterpretation.. of are you just plain DUMB

Which was it, Rogtag?

beng135
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 20, 2021 9:48 am

Roger, you’re dealing w/a topic here that you obviously have no real knowledge of. Just another troll……

Last edited 20 days ago by beng135
fred250
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 7:13 pm

Poor Rog-dumb, obviously didn’t read Willis’s comment

of is totally lacking comprehensions skills…. on purpose. !

Your comment was CRAP.. with big capital letters, RogTag

Just like all your other comments.

Lrp
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2021 9:54 pm

Roger doesn’t understand facts, so he’s getting rude instead

fred250
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2021 9:56 pm

The facts are that you can also run a coal or gas, or nuclear plant at close to 100% of nameplate WHEN NEEDED and often for protracted periods.

It is exceedingly rare for wind or solar to run anywhere close to its nameplate rating, and certainly only for very brief periods of time, and certainly not AS REQUIRED.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 1:39 pm

Ask a Texan what happens when you design too close to the margin and something goes wrong. Plants have to be able to suspend operations for maintenance and upgrades, for repairs after storms, and unplanned equipment failures. One again, you demonstrate your naivete.

Roger Taguchi
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
April 16, 2021 5:29 pm

75% is a long way away form “close to the margin.”

fred250
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 7:17 pm

When wind and solar regularly operate at VERY LOW capacity factors, and occupy a large fraction of the grid..

…. 75% is “close to margin” …. because large percentages can go missing at any time.

Last edited 24 days ago by fred250
Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 17, 2021 3:19 pm

Then what is the optimum safety factor, and on what do you base the assertion?

Mr.
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 1:48 pm

If the “1,000 GW generating capacity” includes wind & solar at nameplate capacities, that’s a bullsh1t number right there.
Divide those by at least 3 to arrive at a real-world useful number.

fred250
Reply to  Mr.
April 16, 2021 4:02 pm

And as most people are interested in “GUARANTEED SUPPLY”…

You need to ask the question something like…..

What percentage of nameplate can the supply source GUARANTEE TO SUPPLY, say, 95% of the time?” (assume 5% for maintenance time)

For wind, that might be some 3-4% of nameplate

For solar it is ZERO

In Australia, before it was close, Hazelwood’s 3 operating coal fired turbines had been sitting on over 95% of nameplate for several months straight. !

Nuclear can also supply near nameplate for long periods of time if required.

There really is no comparison on a GUARANTEE TO SUPPLY basis..

wind and solar are utterly USELESS.

Roger Taguchi
Reply to  fred250
April 16, 2021 5:31 pm

The EXISTING mix is running at 50%….including all the gas, coal, nuke, and hydro.

fred250
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 6:44 pm

“Guarantee to supply” of wind is about 3-4%….. GET OVER IT !

You HAVE TO RELY ON NEARLY 100% of real supply to be available as back-up.

fred250
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 7:01 pm

Come on RogTag…. you are the shill with wind and hot air.

What is the “95% of time, Guarantee to supply, as percentage of nameplate” for wind in Texas.

(let’s call it the RELIABILITY FACTOR)

Do you want “reliable” electricity?

Here’s some data from Germany for 2015 and 2016 clearly showing it was less than 5% of nameplate.

comment image

Last edited 24 days ago by fred250
Roger Taguchi
Reply to  fred250
April 16, 2021 5:38 pm

Fred, Texas has shown all of us that coal, gas, nukes, and hydro are utterly USELESS when you run a system on the cheap.

fred250
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 6:44 pm

Yes rogtag (the unreliable energy shill), we KNOW that Texas WASTED too much money on wind and solar, and didn’t look after the RELIABILITY of the dispatchable supply system

You build in UNRELIABLES……..

You get an UNRELIABLE system.

….period

Wake the **** UP to REALITY, mindless twerp.

fred250
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 6:47 pm

And THANK GOODNESS they still had a whole heap of GAS to cover most of the needs,, being able to ramp up to 450% of is pre-emergency supply as wind supply COLLAPSED.

What would have happened if they didn’t have SO MUCH AVAILABLE GAS supply !! (even though not enough)

JamesD
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 17, 2021 9:20 am

No, Texas shows us what happens to reliable gas and nuclear when wind turbine failure causes you to load shed compressor stations and nuclear cooling pumps.

Loren C. Wilson
Reply to  Roger Taguchi
April 16, 2021 6:44 pm

Power usage varies by day and by the weather. You have to have enough power to cover the peak load, hence the operating factor of about 50% for parts of the year. Don’t forget, solar and wind never run at 50% of nameplate because the wind doesn’t blow at the right speed very often, and the sun doesn’t shine at night. they drag down our average utilization rate.

dk_
April 16, 2021 11:36 am

Good one. But I’d like to request that we stop talking about zero emissions sources of energy as if it was true. As you wrote “It doesn’t include the huge amount of fossil fuel used directly by industry, and for transportation, and for space heating …” which sort of hints at the idea that no power generator can be built without combustion of fossil fuels. To get to “zero emission” power generation, we would have to multiply emissions output by several times, razing the villiage in order to save it.

Timo, not that one
Reply to  dk_
April 16, 2021 12:46 pm

And all wind turbines, solar panels, and electric cars will have to be made from wood and stone, hand cut with stone tools, because all other options will require fossil fuels to make.

n.n
April 16, 2021 11:50 am

Intermittent/renewable energy, shared/shifted responsibility, and a Green Blight because the environment does not matter.

Robert of Texas
April 16, 2021 11:51 am

“As Texas has just proven beyond doubt, no matter if we supply part of this with wind or solar, we’ll need 100% backup. Nuclear is not ideal for this,”

You use nuclear power to provide constant base load and gas to provide for the peaks. You use wind for blowing soap bubbles, and solar for getting skin tans. This isn’t rocket science! 😀

Point taken, you can’t build nuclear fast enough under the current political and environmental culture or using current technology – that is why it is essential to invest in new nuclear technology now.

If safe to operate small nuclear power plants can be standardized, they can form a more distributed network of power infrastructure that is more stable, harder to sabotage, and easier to build out and maintain. Even large nuclear power plants are far better then wind.

John Dueker
Reply to  Robert of Texas
April 16, 2021 12:16 pm

Small nuclear plants will be uneconomic particularly if you try to swing their generation. The security and infrastructure for each plant are still needed. Installing A lot of small reactors on the same site may help a little but not much.

I’m no build more 4-5 GW plants but the risk averse American public won’t allow it. They still think Three Mile Island killed millions when the real answer is 0.

PCman999
Reply to  John Dueker
April 17, 2021 2:21 am

He was referring to the new trend in small module reactors, that will make up a plant of how many GW you require. The modules will be say 100-300W and be made in a plant and trucked to their location. This goes a long way to improving quality and reducing cost. Costs for all megaprojects, not just nuclear even old-fashioned hydro, have ballooned over the decades for various reasons and it is hoped that standardization and mass production in a factory setting will drop the costs.

Meab
April 16, 2021 11:54 am

“Nuclear is not ideal for this, but the new generation of reactors are said to be able to respond quickly enough to balance out the load when wind and solar fail.”

Nuclear is highly uneconomic if operated in this mode. Nuclear fuel is a very small percentage of the cost of running a nuclear plant so it doesn’t save much on fuel by only running it when wind and solar fail but the other costs remain with less revenue coming in because less electricity is being sold. Most of the cost of nuclear is the capital cost related to high construction costs and the long period of construction so if you run it intermittently with less revenue you just increase the amount of time needed to pay off the loan thus INCREASING the total cost.. If you bulid nuclear you’re going to run it flat out for 3 years until you need to refuel but then what do you need wind and solar for?

Most people don’t know that the miniature modular reactors being developed will cost significantly more than a full-scale nuke per kw-hr.

Mr.
Reply to  Meab
April 16, 2021 1:54 pm

what do you need wind and solar for?

This is the fundamental question that needs to be addressed.

If these technologies will always require reliable sources of back-up for at least the 30% of time they are being relied upon to produce & supply electricity, why not just cut to the chase and let the reliable power sources supply the whole 100% of electricity required at any given time?

Last edited 24 days ago by Mr.
Climate believer
Reply to  Mr.
April 16, 2021 9:43 pm

Yes Mr you’re right, it’s that bleeding obvious. If we concentrated all our effort and money into nuclear we could pretty much wrap this problem up by 2050.

PCman999
Reply to  Meab
April 17, 2021 2:31 am

They are being developed specifically because they hope it will cost less – they will be built in a factory setting, based on a standard plan, trucked and setup at the desired location in much less time than past designs. They will have many reactors feeding the steam generators and the whole plant will be in the GWs – though nothing stopping a utility from starting small and adding as needed. The modular design also helps decrease the loss from having a unit down for maintenance or refueling.

ralfellis
April 16, 2021 12:07 pm

Prof David McKay, the former UK government science advisor, said exactly the same about Britain. McKay was a confirmed Greeney, but even he concluded that the UK could never go fully renewable. All his options involved a generous dollop of nuclear power.

See his free pdf booklet. It is very good, but he should have used the same energy-unit all the way through it.
Renewable Energy Without Hot Air.
https://withouthotair.com/

And McKay never did solve the problem of the 5,000 gwh of backup supplies that the UK would need to go fully renewable. He suggested flooding Scottish glens with pumped water systems, but I don’t think the Scots will be too impressed with that scheme.

Without Hot Air is a few years old now, but the analysis is still valid.

Ralph

Reply to  ralfellis
April 16, 2021 3:26 pm

Read it when first came out. The butter pat energy analysis was brilliant.

griff
Reply to  ralfellis
April 17, 2021 2:06 am

McKay was basing his calculation on the technology of 25 years and more ago.

And indeed there is a plan to flood a scottish glen for pumped storage still at the planning stage -though meanwhile there are several small pumped storage projects building, e.g at Loch Ness, but more importantly there are grid scale batteries for peak demand and frequency response and tens of GW of HVDC connections to european countries McKay never dreamed of.

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 6:06 am

ROFLMAO….

grid scale batteries, that last 5 minutes and PRODUCE NO ELECTRICITY

Are you on one of your DELUSIONAL fantasy hallucinogenic-based trips again griff

…and connections to European countries that have NUCLEAR and COAL as RELIABLE supply.. so funny !

Wind is a massive LOSER over the last week in the UK

THANK GOODNESS FOR GAS, NUCLEAR and woodchips from the USA, hey griff!!

That’s all that is holding the UK grid together.

comment image

comment image

Dave Andrews
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 6:43 am

MacKay’s book was published in 2009 not 25 years ago.

Graemethecat
Reply to  Dave Andrews
April 17, 2021 11:17 am

Griff doesn’t do numbers.

ralfellis
Reply to  griff
April 18, 2021 8:45 am

Griff lies in the name of his agenda every day,
And still thinks he is the virtuous one.

Ralph

beng135
Reply to  ralfellis
April 20, 2021 9:58 am

Cult members never think they’re in a cult.

dh-mtl
April 16, 2021 12:12 pm

Willis,

On December 20, 2020, Charles Rotter had an interesting post on WUWT (Biden’s Energy Plans Are Expensive—and Dangerous).
From this post it can be inferred that converting fossil fuel electricity generation to green energy would involve a capital cost about $15 Million / MW of fossil fuel electricity that is replaced. For your 1175 GW, this would represent almost $ 18 trillion.

In addition, one could expect that on-going maintenance and replacement costs for ‘Green Energy’ of approximately 10% of the capital cost (i.e. almost $ 2 trillion/yr, $ 5000 per capita per year). This is equivalent to almost 2/3 of U.S. combined GDP for manufacturing, mining and construction.

So in addition to the time constraint, there are simply not the financial nor physical resources available to carry out the task of converting to ‘Green Energy’.

Bill Treuren
Reply to  dh-mtl
April 16, 2021 12:30 pm

The real point is that the word renewable or sustainable is a fraud.

Could you build with “renewable energy” sufficient to replace the units that need replacing and repair.
The Chinese build solar panels with coal power priced at @8c/Kwh. what would the panels cost if they used solar power?

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  dh-mtl
April 17, 2021 9:26 am

Because the availability is ~25% at best, if you are replacing the fossil fuels then you need 4x, so 72 trillion

Then you need batteries for when it craps out completely, tens of trillions more

Then to be able to recharge the battery while running the grid after a no wind event, make that 6x generation instead of 4

So call it nice round 100 trillion just for the generation

Nelson
April 16, 2021 12:15 pm

It is amazing that people believe CO2 is a problem. In my world, the earth is CO2 starved. 400 ppm isn’t enough. We should be subsidizing power generation that releases CO2.

There is exactly zero data that points to increasing CO2 concentrations from fossil fuel use will ever be a problem. It would be nice if concentration levels could rise to 800 ppm, but there isn’t enough fossil fuels to get us there.

The new generation of SMR’s like Nuscale’s, which is fully developed and licensed, will be on line in a decade. My guess is that they will quickly catch on as base load power. Nat gas can pick up intermediate and peaker needs.

My best guess is that a huge backlash is coming for “green” energy. When people find out they have been lied to about CO2 it will get ugly. The huge costs and no benefits from wind and solar make for political poison.

My guess is that in 2-3 years the UAH temperature will show no warming for the 21st century. What then?

Gerald Machnee
Reply to  Nelson
April 16, 2021 2:36 pm

When you repeat a lie often enough people will believe anything. just watch CNN. Look at the expose by veritas. Their next big lie is climate until Trump runs again.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Gerald Machnee
April 16, 2021 4:39 pm

1) Global Warming
2) Climate Change
3) Climate EMERGENCY

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
April 17, 2021 9:32 am

“Climate Emergency!”

The new meme for the Climate Alarmists.

One big problem for the Climate Alarmists using “Emergency” is they can’t find an emergency that is being caused by temperatures rising because temperatures are *not* rising, evidenced by looking at any regional surface temperature chart from around the world.

The Alarmists are “crying Wolf!” when there is no wolf.

Last edited 23 days ago by Tom Abbott
griff
Reply to  Gerald Machnee
April 17, 2021 2:04 am

And yet repeating the lie that CO2 from human activity is NOT warming the planet doesn’t make the news headlines.

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 5:59 am

Its NOT a lie.

Let’s see you produce the scientific evidence to prove warming by human released atmospheric CO2.

Why are you so COWARDLY and DISHONEST, griff-leftard?

Do you really want to be an ABJECT FAILURE and LOSER all your pitiful life ?

Tom Abbott
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 9:43 am

What skeptics repeat is that Alarmists don’t have any evidence that CO2 is causing the Earth’s climate to change. That’s not a lie.

You could turn it into a lie, or at least an untruth, by providing some evidence that CO2 is doing what Alarmists claim it does, but you won’t do that because you can’t do that because you don’t have any evidence of such.

Prove me wrong.

For all those “undecided readers” out there, Griff will not provide any evidence, as you will see. He probably won’t even address this comment.

That should tell you all you need to know about who has the evidence and who does not.

Anytime any alarmist is challenged to provide evidence of Human-caused Climate Change, they go silent. They all go silent for the same reason: They have no reply because they have no evidence.

Bogus Hockey Sticks don’t count as evidence here. And that’s all they have. A made-up computer-generated global temperature lie, not supported by actual temperature readings on the ground.

Don’t expect many replies to this comment from alarmists. They have nothing to offer.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Tom Abbott
April 19, 2021 3:30 am

See what I mean?

The alarmists have nothing. It’s all smoke and mirrors.

beng135
Reply to  griff
April 20, 2021 10:08 am

OH NO! The planet is wa-wa-wa-WARMING! OMG! What will we do? Who ever shall we call? We’re doomed. DOOOOOOMMMMEEDDD!!!

Last edited 20 days ago by beng135
beng135
Reply to  Nelson
April 20, 2021 10:02 am

It is amazing that people believe CO2 is a problem. In my world, the earth is CO2 starved. 400 ppm isn’t enough. We should be subsidizing power generation that releases CO2.

Biologists are beginning to see that the next major extinction event (other than say an asteroid collision), perhaps of almost all life, will be CO2 starvation.

Last edited 20 days ago by beng135
AndyHce
April 16, 2021 12:16 pm

“As Texas has just proven beyond doubt, no matter if we supply part of this with wind or solar, we’ll need 100% backup. “

Unless I’m misunderstanding something, the Texas normal for unreliables had been established as around 25 to 27 % of total generation during February. That dropped to about 3% for a week or more. Gas generation increased considerably more that the loss of wind and solar but it was still far from enough. That says 100% backup is only adequate for simple situations. Worse times, which obviously come, require far more than 100% backup.

griff
Reply to  AndyHce
April 17, 2021 2:03 am

Texas was a failure of fossil fuel plant and failure to spend money on winter proofing all generation equipment. It would have still failed with 100% fossil fuel, wouldn’t it?

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 9:21 am

Imagine how robust the real generation system would have been if the $80billion spent on renewables had been spent on the part that needs to be there?

As you and others made clear, in your own words, renewables are not responsible because no one expects them to be there

JamesD
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 9:26 am

No. The problem was load shedding compressor stations and the cooling water pumps at a nuke plant. The load shedding occurred when the wind turbines failed.

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 1:42 pm

LIAR-griff yaps again

Wind failed, and because the clowns in charge had mandated that grid energy be used for Gas pumps, rather than the reliability of gas driven pumps, the GAS, which had carried the WHOLE LOAD, increasing by 450% in a short period of time to compensate for a near TOTAL LOSS OF WIND, that also eventually failed to deliver

If they still had their old COAL fired base load, and had maintained it rather than WASTE copious amounts of money on UESLESS,UNRELIABLE wind energy, this would NOT have happened.

April 16, 2021 12:22 pm

California has actually set a zero emissions electricity goal for 2040. Good luck getting them to build nuclear or hydro. Instead, they have volunteered as a renewables crash test dummy.

Fun watching from afar here in South Florida where we just tore down two large old resid fired steam generating plants, and on the same sites switched to bigger capacity (more than needed, for the reason below), but much less costly, CCGT. Even enlarged the states pipeline capacity to support them. Was also able to shut down some inefficient old gas peakers because CCGT loses only 1% efficiency running at 80% and can be flexed to 100% in just about a minute. Result is significantly lower electricity bills for the entire east coast of South Florida. Each new plant only cost about $1.2 billion, not about $10 for equivalent nuclear capacity. Each conversion (demolition plus new plant) took about 2 years, not 10. Produces about half the emissions of the old resid steam because about twice as thermally efficient.

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Rud Istvan
April 16, 2021 2:18 pm

If Cal can further push off their electrical generation needs to other surrounding states and just import more electricity, they might could actually get there. Just as we’ve off-shored much of our manufacturing related emissions to China, along with the jobs and economic wealth. It’s all a fake smoke and mirrors game at this point.

The hilarious irony is that your Florida is The Sunshine State, but because of clouds and hurricanes, no one is foolish enough there to go big on solar or wind turbines.

Last edited 24 days ago by joelobryan
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
April 16, 2021 3:40 pm

Yup. We got sunshine. And all the weather stuff that it creates. We got clobbered by Wilma. Took two years to recover. We got sideswiped by Irma—center roughly 120 miles away—and it still took a year to recover. But the beach I am on and the reefs just offshore are worth than annual winter decent of Snowbirds.

beng135
Reply to  Rud Istvan
April 20, 2021 10:20 am

Problem is Florida is ripe for invasion by the marxists-greenies.

Pariah Dog
April 16, 2021 12:35 pm

Not to worry Smithers, we’ll just have the peasants ride bicycles to generate electricity.

simp_mr_burns-3_hires2-2000.jpg
griff
Reply to  Pariah Dog
April 17, 2021 2:01 am

I worry about the under utilisation of the nation’s hamster and gerbil resource…

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 1:44 pm

And the lack of griff-type unicorn farts over the last week in the UK.

Bet that griff has this picture over his bed.

comment image

beng135
Reply to  Pariah Dog
April 20, 2021 10:22 am

Exxxxxxcelent.

dodgy geezer
April 16, 2021 12:42 pm

This is an interest in article, and, I am sure, accurate. But it missed out one HUGE weapon in the Green armoury.

Demand Management. Otherwise known as power cuts. All the technology is being put in place to enable central control of the amount of power provided to people. You may say that we NEED 1500 GW – but if we only have 750 GW by 2050, then that is what we will have to make do with.

This is the Green plan. They see cutting energy as a major step in de-industrialising and becoming more ‘natural’….

griff
Reply to  dodgy geezer
April 17, 2021 2:01 am

Demand response is indeed a growing industry… but what you miss is the reduction is by consent and paid for… there are many electricity using systems which require power at some point in a given hour, but not for all of it and coordinating and managing where that happens reduces demand. Air con and freezers are the systems most involved. Look it up!

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 1:46 pm

It has to be a growing industry…

….. to help cope with the TOTAL UNRELIABILITY of wind energy.

So glad you want to live in a “developed” country where the government has control over your fridge and air-conditioning.

The Griff-Tard way of life.

tommyboy
April 16, 2021 12:52 pm

We have been able to delay the eventual electrical energy shortfalls so far with big efficiency gains. For example a 1970’s era 100 watt lightbulb has been replaced by a 15 watt LED bulb. Now if a next generation LED has a 67% energy use reduction we are only going to save ten watts. I think we are looking at some serious energy shortages even with the continued use of fossil fuels.

Meab
Reply to  tommyboy
April 16, 2021 1:24 pm

Uh, no, not really.. Lighting is only 2% of total electricity consumption in the US. There has been significant efficiency improvements in some kinds of lighting but overall it has made little difference to the total electricity demand. Efficiency improvements aren’t why electricity use has fallen short of many projections – transferring much of the production base to China and other foreign countries is. That’s why China’s electricity demand is skyrocketing and why China is building huge numbers of coal plants.

tommyboy
Reply to  Meab
April 16, 2021 3:13 pm

I used the LED lightbulb as an example of efficiencies gained in the last several decades in all areas of electrical use and generation. Air conditioners, electric motors, appliances and so on. We will be hard pressed to match these gains going forward.

John Tillman
Reply to  Meab
April 16, 2021 4:09 pm

Think of all the aluminum smelted in the 1940s to ’80s. Most of the Columbia River dams’ generation went itno making aluminum.

beng135
Reply to  Meab
April 20, 2021 10:26 am

Lighting is only 2% of total electricity consumption in the US.

You beat me to it, that’s what I was going to point out.

John Tillman
April 16, 2021 1:07 pm

Going Green with Uyghur slave labor:

https://apple.news/Al11qYxB3T9y8s1xwE9w2Vg

Albert H Brand
April 16, 2021 1:11 pm

In woke New York State they are now demolishing Indian Point nuclear power plant. Most of my neighbors in my area already have natural gas operating backup power supplies and I am leaning in that direction also. We are not too far from blackouts with governor Cuomo at the helm. Maybe diesel may be better as it wouldn’t need weekly exercise. Every Saturday morning the two houses across the street exercise their systems.

April 16, 2021 1:23 pm

re: “A couple months ago I wrote a post called “Bright Green Impossibilities”. In it, I showed the impossibility of converting all global energy to zero-CO2-emission fuels by 2050.”

Could be doable, with a lot of legacy systems still in place, but you’re going to have to overcome some ‘strong biases’ you’ve had ingrained into you since, well, junior high school where they began to teach the basics in QM (Quantum Mechanics) …

People like Robert Park of APS didn’t help the situation either, with his slander and innuendo of one Dr. Randell Mills.

BTW, a validation study of a 275 kW (275,000 Watts) SunCell ™ boiler was released this week. Previous performance before some internal changes were made to the new unit in the previous tests topped out at 150 kW.

Last edited 24 days ago by _Jim
Reply to  _Jim
April 16, 2021 1:49 pm

I dissected both Mills and the Italian Rossi and his ECat in a chapter of my ebook The Arts of Truth. Both are completely fraudulent scams. In Mills case, his newest, the one you cite, is his THIRD go around. His first for almost 20 years was Blacklight Power. Please stop citing him, as you are obviously either misinformed or unable to understand while Mills theory is impossible. In either case you only embarass yourself? His math is wrong, as APS pointed out long ago. And his one claimed experimental demonstration from 1998 is a fraud. The machine he says he used in his one ‘demonstration’ paper CANNOT do what he says it did. That proof is also in my book.

OTOH, LENR based on Widom Larsen theory and the weak force is real. The problem is the energy gain is experimentally only 2. Nogo.

DHR
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2021 2:57 pm

“Say what? “Could be doable”? On what planet?”

Perhaps Mars and Venus. I understand that electricity requirements on those planets are quite small.

gbaikie
Reply to  DHR
April 16, 2021 3:22 pm

Do a moon first, then Mars followed with Venus.
Venus needs a market. Venus is good place go to from Mars, and to leave from to Mars.
And then sky cities on Venus. The terminator line is a must see.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2021 4:18 pm

Willis
If it weren’t for the likes of _Jim, the name P. T. Barnum wouldn’t be a staple of our vocabulary.

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2021 4:29 pm

I bothered to go look up Mill’s third fraud reincarnation as ‘Suncells’. Still based on his QM-GUT theory of hydrinos. Still incredibly wrong, still a scam. Got to give him Madoff like fraudulent staying power, tho.

beng135
Reply to  Rud Istvan
April 20, 2021 10:36 am

Powering by hydrinos is nonsense. Now, quantinos….

/s

Last edited 20 days ago by beng135
RayG
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 16, 2021 10:23 pm

Willis, your use of the Hawaiian “Okole” reminded me of a Bruce Farr designed Transpac winner “Sweet Okole.” The typical Farr transom design “look” explains the name. Rumor has it that “Sweet Okole” is also used to describe a certain portion of the female anatomy.

R_G
Reply to  RayG
April 18, 2021 9:36 pm

Okole is on the other side, so female anatomy is not warranted.

starzmom
April 16, 2021 2:01 pm

I agree with the conclusion–it is not going to happen–but I think the assumption that 10 years is enough time to site, design, study, permit, build, test, and get a final operating license for a nuclear power plant is way too optimistic. Thirty five years ago when I did annual planning forecasts for a major utility, we figured 20 years for a nuclear plant–and that assumed minimal opposition from the public. I think if you could even get far enough along to site something successfully, you would still be 25 years out, at least.

We have been trying to build the Keystone pipeline for 10 years now, and it still isn’t done. A new nuclear plant is much more complicated and controversial. And the plan as outlined by Willis requires lots of nuclear plants.

Last edited 24 days ago by starzmom
Gord
Reply to  starzmom
April 16, 2021 2:45 pm

They killed a few people in Texas and the solution is to have more wind and solar. Well, they will kill more the next time it happens with the same solution.
Look, they killed hundreds of thousands in the USA alone just to try and prove Trump wrong. If Trump would have said HCQ and Ivermectin are no good, they would have been approved in a split second. Backward Canada will not touch them and people are dying, so they want to lock down more.

Reply to  starzmom
April 16, 2021 4:42 pm

Have said this here before. Gen 3 nuc taking >10 years is DOA. Voglte 3+4 proves that. The logical answer given fracking gas abundance is CCGT for the next ~40 years. That gives us ~4 decades to explore the many Gen 4 concepts, select a couple, and then build prototypes to chose the best. Then do nuc G4. Not now.

fred250
Reply to  Rud Istvan
April 16, 2021 7:06 pm

Hopefully, within 40 years people will have woken up to the FACT that increased atmospheric CO2 is not just NOT A PROBLEM, …

….. but is actually HIGHLY DESIRABLE

Last edited 24 days ago by fred250
Joel O'Bryan
April 16, 2021 2:10 pm

This is NOT an inability for the Green Left to do the simple maths about forms of energy to generate electricity our modern society needs. While it is obvious that many Liberals can’t do advanced maths (like understand the how phase, voltage and frequency are interrelated on AC electrical grids) and have no critical analytical sk1lls for complex subjects (understanding why GCMs are crap science), but many can do simple math. And as Willis shows, even simple math shows the impossibility of their claims of zero-emission attainability in our electrical generation infrastructure.

If it’s obvious that renewables can NOT power our society, then what is this Renewable Energy scam is about? Power — Not electrical power but political power.
It is about seizing pure, raw political power and placing into the hands of the Marxists intent on taking over America’s (and the Western democracies in general) political and judicial systems that are still somewhat protected by constitutional structures ensuring a democratic republic. They have already succeeded in subduing dissent to a large extent within universities, large media companies, and the science academies. Anyone in those institutions who does do not openly support this Marxist take-over knows they have to remain silent else they also be purged as they’ve seen happen to colleagues who out speak in dissent.

A raw power that enables them to suppress opposition, Venezuela-style, Chinese Communist Party-style, Russia’s dictator Putin-style suppression of any and all opposition to their rule. One party rule in all cases, a top-down authoritarian power structure.

The wind and solar renewable energy scam, as we all know here at WUWT, comes out of the Climate Change scam as a Trojan Horse. The Climate Change junk claims are all based on layers of lies, of junk pseudoscience computer models, of garbage paleo-temperature reconstructions, and of adulterated modern-era surface station and SST observational data sets. Lies built upon lies, until the layers become so deep it’s an onion trying to peel them back just to find the next layer of lies.

In the US at least, it’s now about having enough power the Left can:

  • Impose California-style ballot harvesting mandate across all 50 states, thereby ensuring one party rule by ensuring favorable electoral outcomes.
  • A packed Supreme to rubber stamp whatever comes out of the legislative and executive branch they control, and to legislate from the bench when the pesky Constitution gets in the way.
  • Diminished ability (through attacks on legitimacy) of state and local law enforcement to control situations, and thereby leading to a Federal take-over of local law enforcement normally a power reserved to the States.

So the renewable energy scam is indeed about power, just not electrical. Absolute political power at the national level the Left sees now within their grasp as the Climate Scam, the take-over of media, the control of academic and science institutions, the thin but crucial control of the WH and Congress all appear to them to be converging to that totalitarian goal of one party rule.

We must stop them.

Last edited 24 days ago by joelobryan
Abolition Man
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
April 16, 2021 3:15 pm

Amen, Brother Joel!
The cracks are growing in the Progressive edifice, and more people are realizing the Emperor is really buck naked! Now is not the time for anyone to despair or surrender; the religious nuts on the other side are not offering quarter and intend to slaughter prisoners and the wounded!
You may not have asked to be involved in a fight to the death; but we’re in one now, so act accordingly!
Thanks, Willis, for spelling it out so clearly that even idiot alarmists can understand; not that they’ll take the time and energy to engage their brain! It seems like many have worn or busted synchros; difficult to get the gears to mesh unless speed and RPM are just right!

Graemethecat
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
April 16, 2021 11:52 pm

A thousand up-ticks!

DHR
April 16, 2021 2:21 pm

“…commission a 1.2-gigawatt nuclear power plant every single week…” I think you mean megawatt.

And note that current nuclear power stations are not good for load following because they are designed for constant power output. There are many many nuclear power plants driving ships of many nations that can and do change power as fast as the throttleman can spin the throttle, because they are designed that way. It’s all in the engineering.

DHR
Reply to  DHR
April 16, 2021 2:23 pm

Oops, 1.2 gigawatt is correct. Sorry.

April 16, 2021 2:23 pm

Here is an article(with a little Texas humor) which I sent to Forbes and Bloomberg in 2020 in response to an article they wrote in 2020 about the Texas grid. 
I have updated it to fit Biden’s time frame. I have sent to some Congressmen and the Dallas Morning News. As you can see it is impossible to meet the “transition from fossil fuel” schedule that Biden has presented.

Howdy from Texas 
Just had to write you from Texas on the matter of transitioning from fossil fuels for electricity by 2035.
There are a lot of climate hustlers including Biden who think this is a great idea. In Texas we have rustlers, same as hustlers.
I wrote this and hoped it would tickle your journalistic bone or give you a Chris Matthews thrill up your leg.
You might be inspired to follow this. Bet you won’t see this paper napkin math in the news. Let’s see how we get to fossil fuel free for electricity by 2035.
Assume we plan in 2021 of what, where, and how to build the fossil free energy sources. Then we start building from Jan 2, 2022 to Dec 31,2034. 
This includes Sundays too. Hell, in Texas we don’t sell beer until after noon on Sunday. That gives us 4745 days. I didn’t include leap days. I don’t want some gal proposing to me.
The US used 4.1×10^12 kWh for electricity in 2019. This is a big number even for us Texans! 63% is from fossil fuels.
This leaves 2.6×10^12 kWh for fossil fuels (Data is from government sources). Now let us assume we don’t have population or energy growth for all those years. Energy needs stay the same for 13 years.
If we want those big old whirly bird killing machines, let start with a big one. The biggest I could find was a 10 mega-watt one. If the wind blew only 25%(good number from wind farm data) of the time it would generate about 2×10^7 kWh in a year. You would need about 120 thousand of them to meet total demand.
You would need to build 25 per day and every day until 2035. That assumes no maintenance, no breakdowns, etc.
If you build any in Texas (hope you don’t) you can’t have hurricanes from the south, tornadoes from the west, or hail storms from the north. Have you seen or been in a tornado? I have, really tears the sh!t out of things.
How about solar panels? Using the typical power density at high noon (of course not counting night time, also best time to go boot scooting in Texas) you would need to cover an area of Rhode Island and Delaware combined.
Oh yeah tell the birds to stay away or don’t have any snow storms or any clouds.
Nuke power is not a topic the climate alarmists want to talk about. But if you did, try the largest nuke plant in the US is about 3 GW plant.
You would need to build one of those about every 49 days. Hope one of those don’t Chernobyl on us and leave a huge fire hole. Probably some Texan would make a BBQ pit out it. 
Well you can see where this is headed, paper napkin math with a TI calculator says we can’t get there.
As AOC people said this isn’t about climate change, it’s about going socialist. (Go to Venezuela for a year and stay the hell of Texas).So, the next time someone says they are going fossil free, ask what and how they are to build it.
Then ask the big ONE, ask them to do it without fossil energy sources.
The usual answer is we will just cut back. Tell them to go first and do without AC and their latte and their jet travel (how about going covered wagon) 
Instead of talking about paper napkin ideas we should debate the facts. How about a head to head 2-hour debate on national TV with experts from both sides?
Oh wait! The Heartland Institute held such a debate and the climate hustlers didn’t even show up. In Texas, it’s time to “get the rope”. As we say in Texas the climate hustlers would have their hat handed to them.
A third grader could do this math with a TI calculator but just some thoughts from an electrical engineer with 50+ years’ experience.
 Happy trails and reaching for a Lone Star cold one and some ribs from the pit.

Graemethecat
Reply to  dave
April 17, 2021 11:26 am

Who should I believe: a veteran electrical engineer or AOC? Hmm…difficult

David Coles-Dobay
April 16, 2021 2:50 pm

Not being a pessimist but SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC CELLS are grown on thermally purified silicon. Currently the largest production of silicon is China using very dirty bituminous coal as energy source. During the life of the solar cell the indium coating degrades at a rate proportional to the solar exposure. Vast majority of commercially available PV cells do not offset the initial pollution caused by their creation during their serviceable life times. Manufacturers will use the extreme maximum as their expected life but the service life is usually less than 70% of that. So if you compare the use of liquidized bed coal reactors to solar PV use the total carbon conversion to CO2 for the amount of energy produced is in favor of coal. The added benefit of adding nitrogen to a liquidized bed reactor produces a bio-available nitrogen source called potash that increases crop yield and food supply globally. When low temperature thermal scavenging devices are employed like thermo acoustic generators to the coal effluent the net energy is near 70% of available energy present in the fuel source. Typical bituminous coal fired silicon forges are limited by carnot number to about 11% of available energy. By locating large industry nearby coal resource and electrical generation further efficiencies can be gained reducing overall cost of energy and increasing human potential. The False economy of Green is actually just the intent of the originators of the Green Party Ala communist party.

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  David Coles-Dobay
April 16, 2021 8:35 pm

Thanks David.
Nice description of the fraud of silicon solar PV panels being called Green.

Jim Traynor
April 16, 2021 3:50 pm

The EIA forecast either excludes economic growth or EV usage. If the economy grows 2.5% real it will be 60% larger in 2040. That’s at a minimum and increase in electric power requirements. Anything less than 2.5% real and say goodbye to your government job.

Additionally, as fossil fuel is phased out so too are all of the other products we get from hydrocarbons…lubricants, solvents, adhesives, light-weight plastics to make all of those EVs, detergents…its a long list. Not certain how you refine fewer hydrocarbons to gain all of the by-products in a growing economy, and without creating large amounts of refinery waste. Have the chemEs figured this out? I don’t know the answer.

JSMill
April 16, 2021 3:56 pm

2040…? Could do it with SMR’s, I reckon. 1 GW molten salt fast reactor is a pretty simple machine. “Only thing” stopping it – well, y’all already know …

April 16, 2021 6:51 pm

This thorough analysis of the situation by Willis Eschenbach shows clearly that not only is the idea of electricity (let alone all industry) going ‘green’, totally impossible but falls into the ‘not-even-worth-talking-about‘ category.

Jim Gorman
April 16, 2021 7:17 pm

One other design, manufacture, and installation project is the distribution network. Replacing existing FF power plants won’t require much assuming the RE generators are sited where simple connections can be made to current power plant connections (not likely). But adding distribution network hardware such as cable, transformers, switching equipment, local drops, and residential circuit breaker boxes to support the transformation to all EV’s won’t be an easy task. Check out how many amps a high capacity charger takes, then double it for a two car family. We’re already behind the eightball in the design and procurement of all this. We’re behind the eightball in the training of qualified electrical workers.

No way this can be done by 2030 let alone 2050!

Pat from kerbob
April 16, 2021 8:57 pm

Building 1200gw of renewables means spreading far and wide which means massive increase of transmission interconnects

And of course, the insane don’t like nuclear so really we are talking about 3500gw

At minimum

May as well wish for Thanos to come take care of the problem, it’s actually more likely

griff
Reply to  Pat from kerbob
April 17, 2021 1:52 am

Except of course when you generate solar right on your own roof or in your own factory?

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 5:56 am

With the help of massive subsides, hey griff-leftard.

Get everyone else to pay for it..

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 8:10 am

Massively destabilizing the grid with thousands or millions of infeed sources.
Don’t forget the important part Griff

Oh, and the factory can only run at full production from 10-2pm and only on a sunny day.

Corky the cat
April 16, 2021 11:29 pm

Corky wonders, why on earth use carbon-free nuclear to balance wind? If you’ve got nuclear, why have wind at all???

Iain Reid
April 16, 2021 11:48 pm

One thing that seems to me is that the general opinion is that renewables are an option to replace fossil fuel generation when the truth is they are not.
They are technically inferior because they cannot support grid frequency (They are asynchronous), Frequency is the single most important parameter of a grid and the more renewable generation the harder it is for the synchronous generators to keep the frequency within limits. The other technical factor which brings stability to a grid is the inertia of rotating mass, i.e. the flywheel effect which large generators have, again wind and solar do not have this valuable characteristic.

It makes me laugh seeing You Tube videos advocating flywheels to store energy when real generators already have this inbuilt feature.

If you replace fossil fuel generation entirely with renewables you would not have any power, the grid will trip. And you cannot restart it using wind and solar, it just is not possible within an acceptable time frame.

griff
Reply to  Iain Reid
April 17, 2021 1:57 am

Of course grid frequency is supported when you bring in renewable systems. The UK has invested massively to support its renewables roll out.

and here’s a useful background article
Solving the Renewable Energy Grid’s Inertia Problem | Greentech Media

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 1:51 pm

“he UK has invested massively”

Yep, more and more WASTED FUNDS because of the reliance on UNRELIABLE SUPPLIES.

Wind has been a TOTAL FAILURE for the last week or so.

comment image

.
THANK GOODNESS FOR GAS, hey griff !

comment image

.
Why do you HATE poor people so much that you want to see this electrical price imposition on them

You, of course, have your several lots of unemployable benefits to rely upon, right

Last edited 23 days ago by fred250
Lasse
April 16, 2021 11:50 pm

You will find an experimental site in Europe!
Germany is going of Coal and Nuclear and on Wind and Solar with some Natural Gas in a short time.
Gas will be needed.
Merkel does not trust Nuclear and US don’t allow them to build North stream II so we will study it carefully. Price of electricity will skyrocket from a high level.

John Edmondson
April 17, 2021 12:10 am

Thanks Willis,

Clear, concise and irrefutable. I’ll send this to our Prime-minister if you don’t mind? You never know he might even read it.

BR,

John

John Edmondson
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 17, 2021 6:56 am

Thanks Willis, done.

PCman999
April 17, 2021 12:19 am

Nuclear power is totally unsuitable as a backup to unreliable fake-green wind and solar. It’s nice that the newer reactor designs make them quicker to respond to variations in demand, but reactors sip their fuel very gently anyway, no advantage at running the reactor at 90% or 50% or even 10% power – most of the reactor’s cost are fixed, does no good or save any substantial amount running it slower, though the reactor might last longer, or could wear out sooner if the power is ramped up and down frequently. Nuclear plant design toting the idea of load following backup for wind are just BS’ing their way on to the renewable bandwagon.

griff
Reply to  PCman999
April 17, 2021 1:49 am

Exactly. Nuclear doesn’t even do well at coping with variations over a week or season… France continually dumps nuclear electricity at cheap rates into Germany on weekends and holidays… plus it can’t operate in summer when water heats up in rivers used for cooling systems.

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 5:40 am

That’s because Germany NEEDS it to make up for lack of wind energy..

Good think Germany still has COAL and GAS and interconnects from France, hey griff-liar.

And we can see by looking at UK data that Nuclear (grey) does ramp up and down.

See the grey at the bottom, ramping up for the daily peak

Not enough to account for the MASSIVE INCONSISTENCY OF WIND.

That is what GAS has HAD TO DO over the last 6 days, as wind in the UK has basically crapped itself.

griff caught in a LIE yet again.. dishonesty is his meme.

comment image

Vincent Causey
April 17, 2021 12:34 am

If the plan is to add nuclear – which is carbon neutral – as a back up to wind and solar, thereby breaking the nuclear taboo, then why would you need the wind and solar in the first place?

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  Vincent Causey
April 17, 2021 8:07 am

Nuclear is must have
Wind and solar are nice to have (to some).

It looks like we are all broke

griff
April 17, 2021 1:47 am

Well let’s take a look at the scale of renewable roll out in the UK… where coal power plants are firmly on the way out. The USA, if it wanted to, could surely achieve more than the UK…

Figures from March 14th show that, in the UK alone, the current overall pipeline for renewables and energy storage projects stands at 86GW of viable projects, according to Cornwall Insight.

The energy analyst said 40.6GW of the pipeline for England, Wales, and Scotland held a development status of ‘scoping’, with such sites having had a grid connection confirmed with National Grid’s register, but having not yet submitted a planning application.
Around 13GW of the pipeline is currently classified as ‘application submitted’, while sites deemed to be ‘awaiting construction’ stand at a total of 24.5GW, and those under construction total 7.8GW, according to Cornwall Insight.

“We are currently seeing increased activity in sites classified as scoping, with recent developments in the offshore leasing rounds being undertaken by the Crown Estate and Crown Estate Scotland,” explained Cornwall Insight analyst Lucy Dolton. “As such, Cornwall Insight’s Renewables Pipeline Tracker now accounts for these sites in its analysis, helping us assess the potential trends from the next Scotwind Leasing round and future Contracts for Difference (CfD) Allocation Rounds.”

42 percent of the UK’s electricity was generated by renewable sources in 2020

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 5:45 am

ROFLMAO

LIES and MISINFORMATION as griff-tard DESPERATELY tries to hide the massive inconsistency of wind..

Now SIX DAYS STRAIGHT with basically ZERO wind energy

comment image

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THANK GOODNESS the UK has PLENTY OF GAS, hey griff-tard,

……because that is what is holding the UK grid together. !!
.

comment image

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Oh look.. COAL was producing more than wind

… and the only RELIABLE so-called “renewable” is WOOD CHIPS FROM THE USA.

Last edited 24 days ago by fred250
griff
Reply to  fred250
April 17, 2021 8:42 am

It is a rare day in the UK coal produces anything at all: it produced just 2% of total UK electricity in 202o and 2019.

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 1:55 pm

Not at all rare that GAS has to carry a majority of the load, hey griff.

They still NEED that COAL, and the nuclear interconnects from France…

… because they KNOW that wind will be like you are..

….. a REGULAR and CONSISTENT FAILURE.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 7:38 am

Would that be 42% for one hour at midday on a bank holiday when the sun was shining and people were out?

griff
Reply to  Dave Andrews
April 17, 2021 8:43 am

As you well know that’s 425 of demand over one year. And increasing.

The figure for coal would be 2%

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 1:58 pm

GAS carries the UK grid..

Wind is an erratic, often MIA waste of time and money,

The cost is ENORMOUS to keep wind industrial estate financial…

Without those OBSCENE subsidies, there would be very little installed wind energy.

https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2021/04/16/obscene-windfarm-subsidies-revealed-gwpf/

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 8:06 am

Griff, it’s good they are building all this
It may allow them to get to 10% of electricity generated per year, all for the low low cost of uncountable trillions

Useless waste as it will all produce zero for great periods of time.

jacques serge Lemiere
April 17, 2021 2:50 am

people must understand something..
“we ” will use electric vehicles means … you and I will not use individual vehicles…

Oatley
April 17, 2021 3:51 am

Excellent as usual, Willis. If readers want to follow the proverbial canary into the coal mine, watch Germany. They now have too much renewable electricity having shut down base load coal plants and have little recourse but to buy natural gas from Putin to run their grid. If not…well there are always rolling blackouts! Get a big bag of popcorn, this will be fun to watch.

griff
Reply to  Oatley
April 17, 2021 8:40 am

The German grid is far more reliable than any US one. and they continue to increase their wind etc power even as they shut down coal plant. Gas is just temporary…

LdB
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 9:59 am

“The guaranteed output of wind + sun = 0.”

Look at the data for January 2021 🙂

Oatley
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 10:49 am

They are decommissioning wind at a faster rate than replacement

fred250
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 2:02 pm

DELUSIONAL griff yaps again.

German grid RELIES on France and other countries to hold it together.

GAS… they are building Nord 2.. what makes you think its temporary.

You live in a fantasy la-la-land totally unrelated to REAILITY.

Get your medication adjusted so it doesn’t cause you so many dumb fantasy imaginations.

Graemethecat
Reply to  griff
April 17, 2021 3:10 pm

Are there fairies at the bottom of your garden, Griff?

Brooks H Hurd
April 17, 2021 9:59 am

Excellent article, Willis.

Our blackouts last summer were not as bad as those during the Texas cold snap, but both were the result of an over reliance on unreliable power sources. California depends on being able to buy 30% of the power it consumes from neighboring states. As you pointed out, there is a governmental push to increase the use of electricity for EVs, domestic heating, cooking, drying clothes and heating water.

Is California building more reliable power plants to provide for this increased electricity usage? Although that would be logical, California is shutting down reliable sources. Diablo Canyon is scheduled to be shut down in 2025. This plant produces 9% of the electricity that California consumes. Thus in 4 years, California’s neighboring states will need to increase their electricity sales to California by over 30%. This number is likely low, since California is pushing for more electricity use.

I keep wondering what it will take to wake up the folks in Sacramento that they have the state on a path to disaster.

Editor
April 17, 2021 3:23 pm

w. ==> The oddest thing is that, according to your first graph, U.S. electrical generation hasn’t increased in the last ( > ) decade. Yet we all use more and more electronics, air conditioning, “bitcoin mining”, hydroponic indoor farming, etc etc.

So why ISN’T production and consumption rising?

And yes, the entire electrical grid, right down to a new higher-amperage power drop to each home, will have to be upgraded if we all have electric cars — and hope to fast charge our family’s two autos (and Dad’s pickup).

Editor
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
April 17, 2021 4:41 pm

w. ==> Like importing electricity from Quebec? Or our factories that used to use electricity are now idle as “everything is made in China”? [ even my granddaughter knows that… ]

There must be more real data than just our guesses.

marlene
April 18, 2021 9:30 am

Sure, “let my electricity go” to higher unsustainable, unmanageable rates so all you investors can make fortunes. Electricity is where the money is – OUR money in THEIR pockets. Of course, this means that the other avenues of green deals aren’t as important as they pretend they are… Electricity is the cash cow. 

Bob
April 18, 2021 3:28 pm

Willis, as usual a great read. I have read the majority of your articles over the last decade at WUWT. You are truly a gifted mathematician and stat whiz. My comment has nothing to do with the current article but since I don’t have your email address I beg tour indulgence for the following. Several times in the past you stated that you have no patience for those that believe in “fairies in the sky”. Stephen Meyer of the Discovery Institute in Seattle has just published a new book titled, “Return of the God Hypothesis” in which he delves into three topics in physics, cosmology, and biology that according to the concept of inference to the best explanation, reveals that intelligent design is a superior explanation to raw materialism that might be an explanation to your superior mind (metaphorically). Recommended by several Nobel Laureates in physics. It’s 400 pages of heavy duty science and my guess is that if you perused it, you might come away feeling differently.

Peter Morris
April 20, 2021 5:06 am

1.2 GW per plant, you say?

Paging Doc Brown…

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