The levelised cost of floating offshore wind

From The GWPF

Date: 29/07/21 Andrew Montford, Global Warming Policy Forum

We present what may be the first estimate of the levelised cost of floating offshore wind.

Last year, I wrote a blog post setting out the financial situation of Hywind, the UK’s first commercial floating offshore windfarm, and indeed the first in the world. It was an ugly tale, with a hugely lossmaking operation kept in the black only by a vast transfer of subsidies. However, Hywind has recently published its second set of financial results since it became fully operational, and so we can now start to get a handle on its operational performance and underlying costs, and publish what I believe is the first estimate of the levelised cost of floating offshore wind.

Situated off Peterhead, in what appears to be something of a sweet spot for wind, it is unsurprising that Hywind’s performance is rather better than your typical offshore windfarm. Renewables advocates are keen to point out that its capacity factor (the electricity generated as a percentage of the theoretical maximum) has reached 57%. However, in 2020/2021, that fell back to just 51%, which is only a few points ahead of recent fixed offshore windfarms.

Meanwhile its costs are extraordinarily high. We already knew that its capital cost, at £8.9m/MW. was around three times the that of fixed offshore wind. But its opex costs are also much higher than might be expected. As a rule of thumb, fixed offshore wind opex starts at around £100,000/MW per year, and then rises from there as the turbines age. However, Hywind seems to have started out from a much higher base – its opex costs have averaged over £200,000/MW per year since it became operational.

With only marginally better operational performance than fixed offshore, and costs that are several times higher, there is no hope that Hywind’s overall levelised cost will be anything other than disastrously expensive. I estimate the LCOE figure as £224/MWh, a value that is unchanged since last year, suggesting that the value is reasonably robust. This is approximately double that of fixed offshore wind, and perhaps five to six times what we would expect for electricity from gas turbines. (As always when comparing wind and gas, we should note that the comparison is misleading, since wind should carry a considerable extra cost burden because of its intermittency, which is expensive to correct).

Read the full article here.

Also a follow up article: Clues to the levelised cost of tidal stream

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Derg
July 31, 2021 6:37 am

We are littering our landscape with this stupid.

Carry on stormtroopers.

Greg
Reply to  Derg
July 31, 2021 7:15 am

landscape. Did you read the “offshore” part of the description? The word “float” maybe a clue and the blue stuff in the photo looks kinda wet. Maybe that’s all “extra” rainfall in UK this year.

Derg
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 7:54 am

You got me Greg…along with the stupid windmills on land these stupid floating windmills or the ones anchored to the seabed are a blight.

Carry on stormtrooper indeed.

AGW is Not Science
Reply to  Derg
July 31, 2021 8:11 am

We are littering our landscapes and seascapes with this stupid.

There, that’ll take care of the peanut gallery…

MarkW
Reply to  AGW is Not Science
July 31, 2021 8:49 am

Some people just aren’t happy unless they’re complaining about something.

layor nala
Reply to  MarkW
August 2, 2021 11:44 pm

Especially if they are the climate alarmists!

Hans
Reply to  Derg
August 3, 2021 4:54 am

Not so, Herr Derg! This is a very inventive concept, as this bird shredder can moved to a windy environment when needed. The only thing missing are the oars for a crew of Enviro Freaks.

commieBob
July 31, 2021 6:39 am

At what point do ‘they’ admit that their experiments aren’t working.

Some of the sjw greenies I know think all technology is like computers. For instance the smart phone in your pocket is a zillion times more powerful and a zillion times smaller and consumes a zillion times less energy that the most powerful computers of the 1950s. Why shouldn’t wind power be the same? Right?

Bill Gates is supposed to have said the following:

If General Motors had kept up with the technology like the computer industry has, we would all be driving $25.00 cars that got 1,000 miles to the gallon.

The retort to that is at least amusing.

In fact, most technology is more likely to follow Eroom’s Law than to follow Moore’s Law.

Steve Case
Reply to  commieBob
July 31, 2021 7:02 am

From the retort:

10.You’d have to press the “Start” button to turn the engine off.

We just bought a new car, and that’s exactly what you have to do now.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Steve Case
July 31, 2021 7:22 am

Beat me to it, Chrysler has had them for over 10 years.

Leo Smith
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
July 31, 2021 10:03 am

My 12 year old jag also

pigs_in_space
Reply to  Leo Smith
July 31, 2021 11:01 pm

Luckily my 30yr old Jaguar doesn’t have any of that crap, and is 200kg lighter than the latest ones.

It also doesn’t need to “limp home” when some gadget break or go for scrap if something like the aircon/climate control black box dies. (BMW)

Chaswarnertoo
Reply to  Leo Smith
August 1, 2021 3:25 am

Alfa, too.

Spetzer86
Reply to  Steve Case
July 31, 2021 4:40 pm

New Subaru exactly that.

Robert of Texas
Reply to  Steve Case
July 31, 2021 5:20 pm

Yes, but you should have to press and hold the “Start” button for at least 10 seconds. That or interact with a menu asking you if you just want to restart your car.

Nicholas McGinley
Reply to  Steve Case
August 1, 2021 12:00 pm

Yeah, this is all rather am using, but Gates is an idiot if he actually meant any of that seriously.

As for the off button being the On button, every switch in my house is an on and off switch.
Stuff from a hundred years ago had the same knob that turned it on, used to turn it off.
Even besides for how a switch works, why have two buttons when one will do?
On my car, turning the key the same way that starts it, will grind the gears off the starter motor if you turn it again!
So the on switch is the “never be able to turn it on again” switch!

Last edited 1 month ago by Nicholas McGinley
Reply to  commieBob
July 31, 2021 7:08 am

“At what point do ‘they’ admit that their experiments aren’t working?”

Never. The main rule of socialists is to never, ever admit they were wrong. They always blame shift when their efforts fail and claim not enough resources committed is why it failed.

Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
July 31, 2021 8:14 am

Maybe once the subsidies stop

Greg
Reply to  commieBob
July 31, 2021 7:34 am

#3 Occasionally your car would die on the freeway for no reason. You would have to pull over to the side of the road, close all of the windows, shut off the car, restart it, and reopen the windows before you could continue. For some reason, you would simply accept this.

I think this was the original GM reply. The rest is an embellishment.

The reply was much funnier and ( because ) realistic than Gates’ comment.

The killer is : “For some reason, you would simply accept this.” There is probably a pandemic analogue in there somewhere.

Last edited 1 month ago by Greg
griff
Reply to  commieBob
July 31, 2021 7:56 am

But, you see they ARE working.

These renewables projects in one form or another have now been being rolled out for well over a decade…

Derg
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 8:03 am

Griff to the rescue with stupid in ♠️ S

Loren C. Wilson
Reply to  Derg
July 31, 2021 10:31 am

My friend who taught me how to play bridge said that minor suits are for minor players.

Redge
Reply to  Derg
July 31, 2021 12:48 pm

oops

Screenshot 2021-07-31 204752.png
Last edited 1 month ago by Redge
Chris Morris
Reply to  Redge
July 31, 2021 3:22 pm

As usual Griff can’t read. They only exist because of massive subsidies. Get rid of those and they disappear. But being in the real world is a foreign country to him.

Abolition Man
Reply to  Chris Morris
July 31, 2021 4:01 pm

Foreign country!? Reality is an alternate UNIVERSE for the griffter!!

commieBob
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 8:16 am

These renewables projects in one form or another have now been being rolled out for well over a decade…

Yep. It’s just mind boggling.

“working” … Where’s Ambrose Bierce when we need him.

AGW is Not Science
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 8:18 am

It’s called “mandate and subsidy farming.”

Otherwise known as the government[s] putting their foot on the scale to make it appears as if “renewables” are worth anything. At the end of the day, another wealth transfer scheme where the unproductive are rewarded while the productive get punished through much higher than necessary costs and reduced reliability.

Richard Brimage
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 8:26 am

Hey Griff. My vehicle is a Ford F-350 with a 6.7 liter Diesel engine. Easily tows my 11,000 lb home. Let me know when there is an electric truck to replace it.

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  Richard Brimage
July 31, 2021 9:11 am

Tesla just postponed the Cybertruck for another year. How long before people realize he can’t make what he promised?

Leo Smith
Reply to  Richard Brimage
July 31, 2021 10:06 am

Plenty of electric trains will do that.
And indeed electric cars. Just not very far
LOL!

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Leo Smith
July 31, 2021 10:39 am

“Electric” trains are either directly connected through a trolley line or a third rail. The other alternative is diesel-electric, with whacking great diesel engines.

Lrp
Reply to  Leo Smith
July 31, 2021 3:20 pm

Diesel electric; just look up iron ore trains Pilbara

Rich Davis
Reply to  Richard Brimage
July 31, 2021 12:19 pm

Silly man. You shouldn’t be driving your home around. Such dangerous freedom. You should live in a two-room cave in a public housing high rise.

MarkW
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 8:52 am

So your definition of working is “has been built”?

IAMPCBOB
Reply to  MarkW
July 31, 2021 9:40 am

Also, ‘;working’ as in ‘sometimes’ or ‘somewhat’!

MarkW
Reply to  IAMPCBOB
July 31, 2021 2:20 pm

griff has a long history of taking every press release about plans to something, as proof that it has already been done.

CD in Wisconsin
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 9:02 am

“But, you see they ARE working.”

I take it that you didn’t bother reading the following section, did you Griffy–poo?

“[T]here is no hope that Hywind’s overall levelised cost will be anything other than disastrously expensive. I estimate the LCOE figure as £224/MWh, a value that is unchanged since last year, suggesting that the value is reasonably robust. This is approximately double that of fixed offshore wind, and perhaps five to six times what we would expect for electricity from gas turbines. (As always when comparing wind and gas, we should note that the comparison is misleading, since wind should carry a considerable extra cost burden because of its intermittency, which is expensive to correct)”.

To argue that something “works” when it is far more expensive than an alternative is patently ludicrous. Rational thinking about costs is not part of what you do, is it Griff?

IAMPCBOB
Reply to  CD in Wisconsin
July 31, 2021 9:42 am

Uh, you that part right, when you said, ‘rational thinking’!

IAMPCBOB
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 9:38 am

Working, Griff??? Maybe so, but at what COST?? Also, ‘working’ at a theoretical output, which is seldom, if ever, seen in reality.

Bill Toland
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 9:55 am

Griff, claiming that offshore wind turbines are “working” is ridiculous. This is the equivalent of replacing a horse and buggy with a mule and buggy. Half of the time, the mule refuses to move. The only way to make the mule move is to feed it with carrots which cost 6 times as much as the hay you feed the horse with. Sometimes, when you most need the mule to move, the mule ignores you; if you try to force the mule to move, it kicks you in the head.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Bill Toland
July 31, 2021 12:22 pm

Seems griff tried to make his mule move a few too many times.

Leo Smith
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 10:05 am

Indeed, and in that time they have succeeded in lifting electricity prices from 6p a unit to 20p a unit, and they still dont generate worth a damn

Loren C. Wilson
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 10:28 am

Sure, because they are spending other people’s money, forcibly taken from them through taxation. No private company does this without subsidies, because they can do math, and they want to stay in business.

Rich Davis
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 12:14 pm

Yep, that’s right griffo. Only six times the cost. Add to that the slight inconvenience that you might get electricity at random times as much as half the day, what’s not to like? Oh I forgot the best bit! It comes with a world socialist government!

But this is needed because lately it’s sometimes bearable weather in England and the Thames hasn’t frozen over in ages.

In which time period would you prefer to live your life?
[__] Benign low CO2 1675-1750
[__] “Dangerous” CO2 1950-2025

Redge
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 12:49 pm

Yes, of course they’re working Griff

Screen shot taken at 20:48 GMT on 31/07/2021

Screenshot 2021-07-31 204752.png
Citizen Smith
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 6:43 pm

Some produce power but none are economically feasible.

pigs_in_space
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 11:04 pm

working to increase my electricity bill year on year yes.

I still don’t get it, why I am charged for “green subsidy” on the things about 1km from my flat, when for weeks at a time, they don’t even turn! (and we live in a windy part of the world close to the sea!)

PCman99
Reply to  griff
August 1, 2021 2:35 am

“Working” or on welfare?

MarkW
Reply to  commieBob
July 31, 2021 8:50 am

The problem is that their experiments are working They were never intended to deliver cheap and reliable energy.

Last edited 1 month ago by MarkW
Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  commieBob
July 31, 2021 9:10 am

Moore’s Law was not a law. It was an observation of what had happened at the beginning of the curve. The “law” does not hold any more (or is that any Moore).

commieBob
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
July 31, 2021 10:48 am

It’s true that transistors aren’t shrinking as fast and, sooner or later, we’re likely to hit a hard limit. On the other hand, some folks think Moore’s Law isn’t quite dead. link

Anyway, most of the people with blind faith that technology will rescue renewable energy, have probably never heard of Moore’s Law.

Leo Smith
Reply to  commieBob
July 31, 2021 10:02 am

No one cares whether it works or not. Its there to harvest subsidies from witless consumers. It works very well to that specification.

AndyHce
Reply to  commieBob
July 31, 2021 1:20 pm

Someone is making money. That the point. No failure.

Rhs
July 31, 2021 6:42 am

Too bad folks at electric4health.org won’t read or understand the cost of making everything electricity based.
They’re running a fear mongering campaign to convince folks around Denver that using Natural Gas in homes leads to a premature death because burning it makes the indoor air quality bad. Fricken nutters…

Derg
Reply to  Rhs
July 31, 2021 7:15 am

You tell them to go to electric heat and keep the natural gas for yourself. Stupid is stupid like the Simon.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Derg
July 31, 2021 7:24 am

CNN-Simon only posts what he is told to post, makes him look even more stupid

Chaswarnertoo
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
August 1, 2021 3:22 am

Simple, not stupid. Paid to be a drone.

Greg
Reply to  Rhs
July 31, 2021 7:57 am

Whether you burn gas or fuel oil, you are consuming air and sending it out of a flue. That necessarily draws in fresh air from somewhere outside.

That has to be better than a hermetically sealed room with “green” electric heating.

Last edited 1 month ago by Greg
Peta of Newark
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 8:38 am

When I was a kid, that was Government advice.

That having an open coal-fire in your house was, maybe not quite the very epitome, but was certainly A Good and Desirous Thing in the maintenance respiratory health.
Especially for kids

Thus, if you converetd to another home-heating source, gas classically, the advice was “Do Not Block or Close” your otherwise redundant chimney.

Last edited 1 month ago by Peta of Newark
MarkW
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 8:55 am

When I lived in Iowa, our gas furnace drew in outside air.

MarkW
Reply to  Rhs
July 31, 2021 8:54 am

Every gas furnace I have ever owned or operated vents to the outside.

Rhs
Reply to  MarkW
July 31, 2021 3:17 pm

Furnace yesterday, oven no.

Greg
July 31, 2021 7:13 am

Start be defining “opex” and LCOE ( levelised cost …O … E ? ) and how that is calculated.
Even if you spend you life emerged in this jargon, don’t expect we all do.

I actually gained nothing from this article except the fact you are against it. Give me a chance to agree with you.

Rhs
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 7:21 am

This article was reposted from another site, whine and complain to them you’d rather not do a Google search for common business terms you don’t understand.
OPEX – Operational Expenses
LCOE – Levelized Cost Of Energy, https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Levelized_cost_of_energy

Greg
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 7:25 am

As soon as I see terms like “levelised” I read that as “agendarised”. I need to know exactly what that means before even start to read the number along side the claim.

Derg
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 8:02 am

Greg it’s like Trump Russia colluuuusion, the news just has you accept as “fact” that these floating monstrosities produce cheap electricity while doing zero harm to environment.

Trust them 😉

Rud Istvan
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 8:03 am

Greg, you can read the details over at Climate ETC in post ‘True Cost of Wind’. Or you can Google LCOE and it will take you to EIA, where the definition is given and their (erroneous) calculations explained. In short, it the annual annuitized cost at a given interest rate.
WUWT does not have to spoon feed everything to everybody all the time.

Leo Smith
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 10:32 am

Indeed you do

Because even if for example taking yer bog standard wind turbine, and calculating capital plus interest on capital divided by number of years of operation, and then adding in operational and maintenence cost, annualised, you still have only scratched the surface of the costs.

Now you need to look at average availability – how often is it broken generating nothing, off line because the wind is too strong, ot there simply isn’t local grid capacity to push it from where the wind is blowing to where the electricity is needed. And you need to throw that in a pot with capacity factor, which is really how much electricity it is actually generating, when it is on line, and working.

That nets you how much electricity it usefully supplies annually.

But the story is still not over, because you have to also factor in the capex and opex of the extra grid that is needed to carry its power from where the wind is blowing today, to where its needed today, knowing that tomorrow when the wind drops you will have a very expensive piece of grid sitting idle..

And we havent yet considered the cost of the batteries we need to add to the grid, or the spinning mass, to stablise the frequency against sudden generation fluctuations, or load variations…

….nor yet have we considered the capex and O & M and fuel costs (or emissions) of the gas power stations needed on standby to fill in the gaps when the wind almost entirely disappears.

Nor have wqe coisidered the effects on emissions and on costs when peole who – say – need a power station that only runs a few weeks in winter, wont build an expensive efficient gas combined cycle, but will throw in a cheap fuel guzzler OCGT, or worst a diesel engine. Bang goes your emiussions reductions

What we Britsh consumers do know is that in 2000 when I built my house electricity was around 5-7p a unit. Today I pay 20p, so with intermittent renewables being something like 20% of the average, they probably represent 50% of the cost , assuming 100% inflation over 20 years.

That means that the levelised cost of all wind calculated holistically comes out like this:

£1 nets me 5 units of electricity, one of these is wind, the other four are conventional.

So the cost of a conventional unit is around 12.5p and the cost of a wind unit is around 50p!

This is not what the wind companies get for a unit – not at all – in fact they make most money trading carbon credits. It is the final costt to the consuner of a wind unit.

Wind actually costs the consumer £500/MWh, Double what they estimate.

Hinkley point nuclear build is constrained to receive at most £90/MWh. OK that is wholesalem, but Hinkley requires no battery backup, no gas backup and no grid extensions.

Without wind or solar on the grid our electricity bills would be nearly half what they are now.

Last edited 1 month ago by Leo Smith
Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 7:26 am

LCOE == Levelized Cost of Electricity, used largely only for renewable systems.

opex == operating expenses

AGW is Not Science
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
July 31, 2021 8:46 am

LCOE = A fictitious value of the cost of “renewable” system electric generation that completely ignores the majority of the actual costs of such systems, in order to create the false appearance that they are “competitive” with real energy production sources like fossil fuels and nuclear.

Leo Smith
Reply to  AGW is Not Science
July 31, 2021 10:40 am

LOL, but basically true 🙂

Rory Forbes
Reply to  AGW is Not Science
July 31, 2021 10:49 am

Rather like tap dancing … only with “virtual” numbers.

Derg
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 7:56 am

At least someone is attempting to understand the cost of these stupid subsidies.

Drake
Reply to  Greg
July 31, 2021 9:15 am

Greg,

You are not the only one here who has asked for clarification of acronyms of abbreviations although these are easily searched on the iterweb!, it took 2 seconds to enter each and get the definition.

Spend some time on this site reading multiple articles since you appear to have no ability to gain knowledge from your own initiative.

Then, once you have some basic knowledge to work from, begin to comment or ask questions.

Thanks for playing.

Citizen Smith
July 31, 2021 7:16 am

Big Government is the only financier that can afford to be this stupid.

Thomas Gasloli
Reply to  Citizen Smith
July 31, 2021 8:17 am

The only business that will ask for a subsidy is one whose business model won’t work. A successful business won’t want the government around screwing things up.

All “renewables” need subsidies so they are all failed business models.

Any business that needs a subsidy should never get one.

Mr.
Reply to  Thomas Gasloli
July 31, 2021 9:18 am

Exactly.
If the business case is robust enough to pitch for government funding, it should be robust enough to issue as a prospectus on any stock market.

Or maybe the underlying assumption for wind & solar carpetbaggers is that bureaucrats / politicians are such easy marks they’ll fall for any nonsense that syphons taxpayers’ $$$$$s.

Carlo, Monte
July 31, 2021 7:20 am

Subtitled:

“How to Throw Money into the Ocean”

Abolition Man
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
July 31, 2021 4:14 pm

So a boat is no longer the only spot in the water you pour buckets of money into? We’re going to need a more precise definition!

Greg
July 31, 2021 7:53 am

I recently saw a video about an anchored tide turbine generator which had been developed, also in Scotland, at the astounding cost of £300 million for a single example of a full scale prototype.

I has just been floated but is not yet in production. The obviously PR spun video said it could produce enough for “2200 homes” but did not say anything in meaningful scientific units. I guess that means somewhere in the 2-3MW range. Again we don’t know if that is peak or 24/29.5 mean.

After blowing 300mil of public money, no estimation of price / kWh is given, nor the estimated cost of any future commercial units.

Last edited 1 month ago by Greg
griff
July 31, 2021 7:55 am

This news just in:

“New floating wind technology in the UK has taken an important step forward with the announcement that 300MW of new projects, identified through The Crown Estate’s Test and Demonstration leasing opportunity, have been given the green light to progress to the next stage of assessment.

The three projects, each located in the Celtic Sea, have satisfied the initial application criteria set out by The Crown Estate, demonstrating technical competence, delivery capability and technological innovation.”

And if you are going on to tidal stream, a new tidal device just got grid connected in Orkney…

Bill
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 8:31 am

For information on another expensive way of producing electricity see:

Clues to the levelised cost of tidal stream (thegwpf.com)

MarkW
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 8:59 am

Oh great, now they can lose money even faster.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  MarkW
July 31, 2021 3:08 pm

They are doubling down on stupid.

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 9:20 am

Is the Crown Estate affiliated with the Windsor clan? They don’t seem to be very tech savvy.

Last edited 1 month ago by Trying to Play Nice
Right-Handed Shark
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
July 31, 2021 11:08 am

I think this means that as all the land around the UK coast between low and high tide belongs to “the crown”, the queen has just had a huge windfall by leasing it for power generation. Pun very definitely intended. The “delivery capability” was the assessment of how much money it would put in the queen’s coffers, I assume.

Last edited 1 month ago by Right-Handed Shark
Archer
Reply to  Right-Handed Shark
July 31, 2021 12:05 pm

Income from the crown estates go to the treasury.

Drake
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 9:21 am

It mat the criteria of “The Crown Estate” but is it economically self sustainable?

Of course not, it will always need FF or Nuclear to provide BACK UP DISPATCHABLE power.

And Tide power, what is the output curve of that? It would only be of any benefit when the maximum tidal flow is during the maximum demand timeframe.

Leo Smith
Reply to  Drake
July 31, 2021 10:44 am

There is nothing that a fleet of nuclear power stations can to that cannot be done worse and at far greater cost than by adding intermittent ‘renewable’ energy to it.

The idiocy is that once you accept nuclear at all, the case for ‘renewable’ energy collapses completely. Nuclear + renewables has no economic or technical advantages whatsoever over just nuclear.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Leo Smith
July 31, 2021 3:11 pm

“once you accept nuclear at all, the case for ‘renewable’ energy collapses completely”

I agree. Perhaps that is one reason the alarmists, for the most part, won’t consider nuclear.

Rich Davis
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 12:35 pm

Don’t you mean that you just got new marching orders for you agitprop?

Obviously this is working! Government wouldn’t move forward on something if it didn’t make sense, right?

What’s going on griff, nowhere on the planet where you can find some extreme weather that fits your meme? How distressing for you.

In which time period would you prefer to live your life?

[__] Benign low CO2 1675-1750
[__] “Dangerous” CO2 1950-2025

Redge
Reply to  griff
July 31, 2021 12:52 pm

Here it is again, Griff mate

Screenshot 2021-07-31 204752.png
Paul Johnson
July 31, 2021 8:07 am

The Block Island project in Rhode Island (fixed offshore wind) concluded a power sales agreement for $244/mWh (£175/mWh). We can only expect floating wind to be more expensive.

July 31, 2021 8:12 am

Andrew, you claim that the capacity factor fell down from 57% to 51%.However the 57% was reported as late as in March 2021. The spring and summer have less wind.

Besides, it is unfair to compare the cost of the first ever power plant of its kind with a standard power plant.

The operator writes:
“The turbines on Hywind Scotland are covered in sensors, to extract as much data from the wind farm as possible.
“We’re monitoring everything from ballast, mooring, structural strains and the more regular wind turbine sensor data, looking at how best to optimise this innovative technology as we prepare to develop at scale. We’re sharing parts of this data across industry to help the advancement of the technology globally and more widely than just our own operations.”

This extra monotoring is just one of the factors that add cost to this installation. Another cost driver is explained by the fact that no one have experience in the operation of a full scale floating windmill plant.

This is the first one in the world. The operator need to train employees and learn how to operate it most effectively.
/Jan

MarkW
Reply to  Jan kjetil Andersen
July 31, 2021 9:01 am

The only thing unique about these is the stand they are mounted on.
Just how expensive do you believe sensors are?

Reply to  MarkW
July 31, 2021 9:52 pm

Thanks for the comment Mark.

Small differences often have huge impacts, and there are a few differces here.

The water is much deeper of course. Any inspections and work is far more complicated in deep water. They cannot just send a diver down.

Another difference is that the structures are held in place with anchors and relatively slack wires. That means that they move a little with changing wind and streams. It is easy to see that this can cause a series of complications.
/Jan

Drake
Reply to  Jan kjetil Andersen
July 31, 2021 9:33 am

Jan,

The onshore and fixed offshore versions of bird choppers are not economically viable and are useless without backup electrical generation from some sort of DISPATCHABLE source.

So how is this floating system, more expensive to install than the onshore and fixed offshore bird choppers even without all the testing crap, ever going to be economically viable?

The answer is, it will not. So all your “it is unfair to compare the cost of the first ever power plant of its kind” crap is just that, crap!

LCOE, even as defined to benefit “renewable” electricity production by disregarding the REQUIRED backup source, shows that “renewables” are a waste of MONEY! Please address THAT issue.

Thank you.

Beta Blocker
Reply to  Jan kjetil Andersen
July 31, 2021 9:48 am

———————————————————
Jan kjetil Andersen: “Besides, it is unfair to compare the cost of the first ever power plant of its kind with a standard power plant. ”
———————————————————

Knowledgeable cost analysts can examine every detail of the ‘actuals incurred’ cost records for this first ever floating wind turbine power plant and can use that analysis to predict with reasonably good accuracy where future cost savings are likely to be found.

Will such a detailed cost analysis be performed, and will that cost analysis then be made available to the public for critical examination?

Lrp
Reply to  Jan kjetil Andersen
July 31, 2021 3:27 pm

It must be like driving a car without steering wheel; and you hope they’ll learn how to do that eventually

Peta of Newark
July 31, 2021 8:56 am

Is it still true that the windmills, despite the lavish and expensive maintenance, are down to 50% of nameplate after about 15 years operation?

I pondered that and its similar to how hurricanes cannot get larger, stronger or faster.

Its because their blades are made of plastic, although ‘most any material would fail in the same way.

The Main Action of a windmill is at the outside edge of its blades’ rotation. That’s where the relative wind-speed is greatest and the classic (3rd power of wind-speed) law would apply.
Most energy will be being harvested from the outer, say, half of the blades’ length.

But because of the speed they’re moving relative to the wind, that is where most ot the wear & tear will occur.
The tips of the blades will be eroded by by any/all detritus grit dirt sand dust insects etc etc much more quickly than the slower moving centre.
Being made of plastic (resin) really is The Worst Thing they could be made of – it is soooo soft.

So the blade tips will lose their aerodynamics and thus start to become a drag on the machine – instead of being its most productive part. Similar to how when a hurricane wants to accelerate, drag kicks in at the 3rd power wind-speed and stops it going any faster.

Thus, as windmills age, they effectively get smaller in size and that is why they all seem to have that 15 year > 50% decline in power output.

Being flippant, instead of helicopters spraying de-icer onto the blades, they should be spraying a coating of was polish onto them as an attempt to protect from damage and maintain their aerodynamics.
The same stuff you put on your car. Now & again ;-D
coz everybody knows, Shiny Cars go faster than all other sorts, especially if they’re red

OMG; That’s it!
Windmill blades should be red, not that ‘blend into the sky’ blue-grey colour they usually are.

sigh. So many Nobel Prizes am running outta space for em all.
Keep an eye on eBay soon. OK?

Last edited 1 month ago by Peta of Newark
Gary Pearse
Reply to  Peta of Newark
July 31, 2021 10:05 am

Peta: or they could edge the blades with tungsten carbide. As an engineer, I assumed they did edge them in some way. You can edge them with an engineering plastic filled with ground carbide, as well.

Another possibility would be replaceable “edges” during a maintenance schedule. Sheesh. If that was sufficient to restore capacity, it would be a lot cheaper than dismantling, scrapping, remanufacturing and installing a replacement. You’d get closer to gas fired life per unit. Maybe they need to spend a little more at the outset.

I’ve been told that modern engineering software has removed the need for engineering thinking. This means one ‘virtual engineer’ designs everything and the project engineer could be a technician.

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Gary Pearse
July 31, 2021 2:31 pm

Another possibility would be replaceable “edges” during a maintenance schedule. Sheesh.

It’s a shame that there aren’t thousands of objects continually cutting through the air at hundreds of miles an hour that we could learn from.

Oh, wait…

Mike Lowe
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
July 31, 2021 9:13 pm

The birds might object!

Leo Smith
Reply to  Peta of Newark
July 31, 2021 11:11 am

You forget that as they age they all start to be peremanently broken bearing wise.
Consider an offshore wind turbine compared to a steam water or gas turbine in a turbine hall

  • The wind turbine is exposed to salt spray – the others are not
  • The wind turbine bearings carry a massive axial load de to the weight of the blades and the shortness of the internal shaft.
  • Due to the slow speed the wind turbines require a gerabox or exceptionally powerful magnets to generate the same as a 1500 rpm standard generator. Conventional turbines do not. Powerful magnets, mixing bearings and salt water mean massive galvanic corrosion. Or ceramic bearings that destroy efficiency.
  • Unlike a finely balanced turbine spinning at synchronous speed at a constant temperature in an environmentally stable machine hall, a wind tubine is rotating an enormous mass through what may be – even on steady wind days – massive turbulence as the blade tips go in and out of the boundary layer close to the sea, and the wake turbulence of any upwind units. In addition massive gyroscopic forces happen if the turbine head needs to be rotated to face the oncoming wind, or the turbine is in fact nodding with the waves on a ‘floater’ or as the tower itself flexes. And the temperature can range from -15°C to +50°C in the nacelle.
  • Servicing these monstrosities requires at the very least a crewed service vessel equipped with a crane high enought to loft spare parts up to the nacelle, or a helicopter. And calm weather! Contrast a typical turbine hall where everything is easy to get at onsite and overhead gantry cranes can shift any spare parts needed.

What this means is that they break down far far more often than land based steam, water or gas turbines, and have a massively higher service cost when they do, in terms of time out of service, actual accountable costs and indeed carbon emissions associated with servcice boats and helicopters.

Blade damage from ice, insects, birds and salt spray is just another problem, but by far and away te biggest source of failure long before the blades are U/S is bearing and gearbox destruction .
And if you treble the size of the bearings then up go the bearing losses and the capital costs.

If I wanted to design a low carbon emission grid, as a fully qualified and educated graduate electrical engineer, the last place I would start is with an offshore wind turbine. Let alone one that moves about.

And if there were no subsidies for ‘reneable’ energy, simply a carbon tax on fossil fuel, Britain would be 100% nuclear by now

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Leo Smith
July 31, 2021 2:36 pm

Yeahbut, they do have a couple of distinct advantages: people can’t see them when they are not working, and people can’t see the carnage they cause to wildlife.

It’s important to note that when you see a group of wind turbines moving slowly, do slowly that you have to look for 10 seconds or so to see it, and typically 1 or 2 are not moving, they are actually being turned using electricity in order to prevent deformation of the bearings. More wasted money.

Leo Smith
July 31, 2021 9:58 am

Renewables advocates are keen to point out that its capacity factor (the electricity generated as a percentage of the theoretical maximum) has reached 57%. However, in 2020/2021, that fell back to just 51%, which is only a few points ahead of recent fixed offshore windfarms.

That is simply a lie.Probably generated from ‘models’

Bob Cherba
July 31, 2021 10:00 am

Not on the subject of terribly expensive floating wind farms, but has anyone calculated the effect of all these wind devices removing energy from the atmosphere? I’ve read that you can’t locate these wind farms too close behind one another because the first farms in the wind leave less energy for those next in line. ‘Just seems as though thousands or millions of these things will have some effect on the weather.

Last edited 1 month ago by Bob Cherba
Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Bob Cherba
July 31, 2021 2:38 pm

What would be hilarious is if we discovered that they actually contributed to ‘blocking highs’ and stationary storms that cause heatwaves and floods!

Leo Smith
July 31, 2021 10:01 am

We already knew that its capital cost, at £8.9m/MW. was around three times the that of fixed offshore wind. But its opex costs are also much higher than might be expected. As a rule of thumb, fixed offshore wind opex starts at around £100,000/MW per year, and then rises from there as the turbines age. However, Hywind seems to have started out from a much higher base – its opex costs have averaged over £200,000/MW per year since it became operational.

So far more expensive than even Hinkley Point new nuclear when the shorter lifetime is considered
And that is before the cost of backing it up is added on, and it doesnt include decomissioning back to green field, like nuclear, either

ElmerUlmer
Reply to  Leo Smith
July 31, 2021 12:21 pm

What the heck is the future of osmotic membrane electricity? Here is a short summary from the EPFL newsletter: https://sti.epfl.ch/a-membrane-that-generates-electricity-from-seawater-and-fresh-water/

1MW per square meter! Of course they don’t say anything about efficiency, life, cost, hydraulic infrastructure and pump capacity and etc, but the technology seems less crackpot than tidal current generators or floating wind turbines.

Ted
July 31, 2021 4:09 pm

To run some basic totals (using 1.39 US dollars to pound)
The plant cost $370 million to build, with a capacity of 30 MW, and a net of 15MW due to capacity factor.

A diesel power plant with the same net capacity (12 each 2MW diesels plus switchgear) would cost $28 million to install.

Fuel (at the current high of $2.25/gal) would be $21 million/year to equal the same output.
Even if you assume a diesel plant having the same high operating cost as the offshore wind, it would take over 16 years before the diesel costs as much as this wind for the same amount of energy produced. With more typical costs, it will take the full 20 year lifespan to break even. And diesel plants are more expensive than any other fossil fuel.

Derek Colman
July 31, 2021 4:44 pm

Are you aware of “Contracts for difference compensation payments”. There is a government web page describing this and it sounds like a benign arrangement for a flow of money to and from wind farms to compensate for losses and pay back from profits. In reality there is no payback and money only flows one way. Here are the figures for Hornsea One, opened in June 2019, showing receipts for the 2020 financial year. Sale of renewable energy is obviously the amount paid by the Grid at the strike price (£48 per MW/h?).
Sale of renewable energy – £91.2 million.
Contracts for difference compensation payments – £281.3 million
Total – £372.5 million
If the strike price was say £48 per MW/h, that would make the total cost about £200 per MW/h
I understand that solar farms also come under this arrangement. I did not receive info on the source, so maybe you could check the public declaration of the Hornsea accounts, and do an FOI on the government department.
Government web page – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/contracts-for-difference/contract-for-difference

July 31, 2021 4:53 pm

There is nothing that the Climate Alarmists love more than a great disaster and floating offshore Wind Turbines also really fit their requirements for money wastage.

Robert of Texas
July 31, 2021 5:20 pm

One big storm should take out a bunch of these floating monstrosities (assuming they keep building them despite the evidence they are expensive failures). I can’t wait to see two of these platforms ramming because one cuts lose in a storm. (Actually, I can wait…I hope they stop building these monstrosities)

At least decommissioning them will be easy, just torpedo the platform and let it sink.

Michael S. Kelly
Reply to  Robert of Texas
August 1, 2021 3:59 am

I briefly worked in this field, and ran across a group of investors anxious to build floating wind turbines off the coast of Florida. When I asked how they would deal with hurricanes, the solution someone had sold them was to fold up the blades and retract the whole tower into a canister which formed the main part of the floatation system, then close off the top with a massive hatch. The entire unit would then submerge slightly to ride out the storm (leaving people without power).

So, a huge “Transformer” wind turbine in a submarine… Have you seen how many of those there are?!?

Bruce Cobb
August 1, 2021 6:49 am

Here in NH, the powers that be in their ultimate wisdom, are seriously considering installing floaters off the coast. Naturally, it would be an enormous boondoggle, and who would bear the brunt? Why, ratepayers, taxpayers, as well as business would. It would be folly of the highest order, but even Gov. Sununu, a (supposed) Republican seems to be onboard with the idea. So many have been fooled into the idea that Retardables are a panacea, both for the economy, and for “the planet”. Idiots.

willem post
August 1, 2021 8:43 am

HIGH COSTS OF WIND, SOLAR, AND BATTERY SYSTEMS IN NEW ENGLAND
https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/high-costs-of-wind-solar-and-battery-systems

EXCERPT

Future Build-outs of Offshore Wind Turbine Systems in New England

– MA, RI, and CT are planning to have 8460, 880, and 4160 MW, respectively, a total of 13,500 MW of offshore wind by 2035, much greater than the above 1600 MW.
– If the same simulation were made for 13,500 MW of wind turbines, the up/down spikes would be about 10,000 MW
– The existing CCGT plants would be inadequate to counteract them, i.e., output curtailments would be required.
– The 2035 date has a ring of urgency to it, but likely would be unattainable in the real world. See page 13 of NE-pool URL
 
It would take at least 20 years to build out 13,500 MW wind turbines off the coast of New England, plus large-scale solar systems to reduce the NE grid CO2/kWh by about 30%
 
With that much wind and solar, the NE grid would become very unstable. The NE grid would need:
 
1) Curtailments of wind output, kWh, on windy days
2) Curtailments of solar output bulges on sunny days
2) Major connections to the Canadian grid
3) Grid-scale batteries, with a capacity of 3 to 4 TWh; turnkey capital cost about $1.5 to $2 TRILLION, at $500/kWh, delivered as AC

https://www.iso-ne.com/static-assets/documents/2020/02/2020_reo.pdf
https://nepool.com/uploads/NPC_20200305_Composite4.pdf
https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/reality-check-regarding-utility-scale-battery-systems-during-a

NOTE: Nearby countries import German overflow electricity, when it is windy and sunny, at low grid prices (because of a German surplus), and export to Germany, when it is not windy and not sunny, at high grid prices (because of a German shortage). 
The Netherlands is one of the major beneficiaries.
German households get to “enjoy” the highest electric rates in Europe, about 2.5 times as high as the US
Denmark, another wind country, is second!
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2021/04/08/germanys-windexitold-wind-turbines-dismantled-without-replacementlooming-massive-power-outage/

Maine Floating Offshore Wind Turbine Systems are Dead in the Water
 
The ocean waters near Maine are deep. Almost all offshore wind turbines would need to be floating units, anchored at the seafloor with at least 3 long cables.
The 700-ft tall wind turbines would need to be located at least 25 miles from any inhabited islands, to reduce the visuals, especially with strobe lights, 24/7/365
The wind turbines would be far from major electricity demand centers, such as Montreal and Boston.
Transmission systems would be required to connect the wind turbines to demand centers
All that would make the cost of electricity produced by these wind turbines more expensive than those south of MVI.
http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/deep-water-floating-offshore-wind-turbines-in-maine

NOTE: This article estimates the levelized cost of electricity of the HYWIND floating wind turbines, at Peterhead, Scotland, at UK pounds 224/MWh, or $311/kWh, or 31.1 c/kWh. 
The turnkey capital cost was UK pounds 8.9 million/MW, or $12.37 million/MW 
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2021/07/31/the-levelised-cost-of-floating-offshore-wind/
 
Maine is Desperate to Stay in the Wind Turbine Business

Maine wind/solar bureaucrats likely are in active discussions with stakeholders to add 751 MW of onshore wind turbines.
Maine wind/solar bureaucrats are not in active discussions with stakeholders to add offshore wind turbines, as shown by the interconnection proposals on page 13 of URL
https://nepool.com/uploads/NPC_20200305_Composite4.pdf

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