Janet Yellen, 78th United States Secretary of the Treasury, official portrait

Treasury Secretary on European Wind Drought: “Energy Storage … Can Be Deployed”

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

h/t Dr. Willie Soon; If Energy Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has calculated how much must be spent on energy storage to stabilise a 100% renewable grid, she does not seem keen to share.

Why Treasury Secretary Yellen testified that climate change ‘must be addressed’

Grace O’Donnell·Assistant Editor
Mon, October 4, 2021, 11:54 PM

Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen recently reiterated her stance that climate change poses a threat to the U.S. economy. 

“Climate change is an existential threat, and it is a very high priority of President Biden’s and of mine to address it,” Yellen told the Senate Banking Committee last week. 

Yellen also responded to a question about the Biden administration’s plans to shift U.S. energy to be reliant on renewable sources by 2035.

I don’t believe that the president’s program is going to lead to increases in the cost of energy,” Yellen said, referring to the fuel shortage and high gas prices in the UK and Europe more broadly. 

She added that “in the case of the UK, there’s a question of what to do if the sun isn’t out and the wind doesn’t blow, and I believe there is storage technologies that can be deployed and, you know, other means to address that, and of course that has to be part of a plan to switch to renewables and address climate change.”

Read more: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/treasury-secretary-yellen-climate-change-135431579.html

A while ago I performed a rough calculation, total cost of wind turbines to produce enough annual power, to replace the current US generator fleet is around $20 trillion.

But the cost of battery storage to redistribute the peaks and troughs into a smooth supply throughout the year, by my calculation, was around $50 trillion. My rough calculation didn’t take seasonal variations in supply and demand into account – that $50 trillion only buys you five days backup, and assumes the batteries have a full charge at the start of the 5 day “energy drought”.

Maybe my rough calculation is wrong. But hand waving proposed expenditure of anything like that magnitude just isn’t good enough.

US Treasury Secretary Yellen must be totally candid about her department’s green energy generation and storage cost calculations, her calculation parameters, her expenditure timeframe, and explain to the American people how the USA will be more financially stable after the USA borrows or raises 10s of trillions of dollars, and somehow passes those costs onto US businesses and consumers.

President Obama, whatever his faults, was honest and forthcoming about what his plan would do to the cost of energy. The Biden administration should at least match President Obama’s candour on what his green energy revolution will do to the energy bills of the American people.

Correction (EW): h/t TonyL, dk_ – First paragraph mistakenly called Yellen the energy secretary.

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Carlo, Monte
October 4, 2021 6:03 pm

This Yellen person is either a parrot, or an idiot. Perhaps both.

Sweet Old Bob
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 4, 2021 6:12 pm

She is just yellen … no facts , just yellen .

Reply to  Sweet Old Bob
October 5, 2021 2:51 am

No,shes just a reliable tool.
Just like Hilary or von der leyen in Europe.
No matter how unqualified she is compared to the rest
the billionaires will always pull her out of their butts to give her a top position,
because they know that people are far more willing to take shit from a woman and pretended weakness (to push the agenda)than from a man.

That ‘s why we have a massive rise in women in top positions in the past years be it the tyrant in NZ,VDL in Europe,the chick in britain,Hitlery, Kamala,Barack or Trudeau or the Squad of underqualified parasites lead by AOC with the shameless incest Ilhan on top who is complaining 24/7 about racism in the USA where the richest black people live (a country that has freed more slaves than any other country,especially in Muslim regions as result of negotiations,economic pressure and war threats)
while she belongs to the religion that enslaves black people right now by the millions.

Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 4, 2021 6:48 pm

Si Señor.

Frank from NoVA
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 4, 2021 8:28 pm

Over her lengthy career in “government service” Janet Yellen has transitioned from Keynesian Klown under Clinton to MMT (Modern Monetary Theory) Madwoman under Biden. Such people actually believe that fiat money created ex-nihlo is a substitute for the formation of real capital, and can be used to make all their progressive dreams come true. In reality, their “investments” (e.g., renewable energy) not only don’t satisfy any real human needs, but actually result in the destruction of real capital (e.g., fossil fuel and nuclear energy power generating plants). While the timing of the subsequent economic bust is uncertain, its occurrence is inevitable.

Carbon Bigfoot
Reply to  Frank from NoVA
October 5, 2021 12:52 am

She and the FED are dead. Replaced by the Quantum Financial System of Nasara/Getsara. This month.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Carbon Bigfoot
October 5, 2021 8:33 am

Please, one cult at a time. The Church of Climastrology is our focus here.

Allan MacRae
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 4, 2021 10:34 pm

“This Yellen person is either a parrot, or an idiot.”
I use the terms “scoundrels” and “imbeciles”.
The two terms are not mutually exclusive.

Michael in Dublin
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 5, 2021 4:57 am

Yellen thinks we are all plebs and eejits because this allows her to get away with all her gobbledygook and hogwash. The kindest thing we can say is that she is disingenuous.

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 5, 2021 5:33 am

She belongs in the same assisted living facility as her boss Xhiao Bai-den. They can watch TV and eat Jello together and reminisce about the days when they thought they were intelligent.

Coach Springer
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 5, 2021 7:51 am

Nobody anywhere thinks she is stupid or even deceived enough to believe what she is saying. Which means she has chosen to pass a lie for whatever her reason(s) might be. But yes, she’s used to it and a perfect fit for Biden.

Paul Penrose
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 5, 2021 10:30 am

Willfully ignorant.

Devils Tower
October 4, 2021 6:13 pm

Yellen is a …ing joke

This is the Treasury Secretary we have

Already, natural gas and propane prices heading for stratosphere



It is going to get ugly in US and Britain

Devils Tower
Reply to  Devils Tower
October 4, 2021 6:46 pm

And this is just wholesale

Devils Tower
Reply to  Devils Tower
October 4, 2021 9:37 pm

Brings back memory, in 2014 when propane spiked to this level, the consumers price peaked over $5 in a state with the lowest propane price. That was in feb/Mar.

If this keeps up….

Reply to  Devils Tower
October 4, 2021 7:02 pm

Wiser heads are beginning to plan as energy grids everywhere have a lean and hungry look about them-
Rolls-Royce set for huge nuclear power payday in Eastern Europe (msn.com)
Now is the winter of their discontent.

willem post
Reply to  Devils Tower
October 4, 2021 7:57 pm

The whole Biden administration is a joke.

All sorts of weird, incompetent people have been crawling out of the woodwork, and they get nominated for important posts in government.

The immigration/open borders idiot is just one of them.

The other idiot is an avowed communist/socialist, from the most socialist state in the US, with his $6.0 TRILLION remake-boondoggle, later reduce to a MERE $3.5 TRILLION.
Totally off the charts.

All this was made possible by the Dem/Progs junta installing themselves after THEIR COUP D’ETAT.

Read this article to learn JUST A LITTLE BIT ABOUT how it was done.


Carlo, Monte
Reply to  willem post
October 4, 2021 8:33 pm

Now the US AG is telling the FBI to investigate people who protest against critical race “theory” at school board meetings as domestic terrorists under the patriot act.


Tom Abbott
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 5, 2021 2:38 pm

Now aren’t we glad Attorney General Merrick Garland was prevented from becoming a U.S. Supreme Court Justice by the Republicans.

Now we see that Merrick Garland is really a political creature not fit to sit on the Supreme Court. Merrick apparently thinks it is ok to use the power of the governemnt to go after his political opponents. That seems to be a common trait of the radical Democrats.

Devils Tower
Reply to  willem post
October 4, 2021 8:36 pm

It goes back farther. Obama was selected by the intellience community and pushed thru without scrutiny from the press. How many mocking birds are still around. As long as Obama did what they wanted he was protected. The survalance state was set up. They were surprised by Trump the first time, but not the second. The DOJ, FBI, court system and on due their bidding. As Schumer stated, do not cross the Intel folks. Reid, Pelosi, Ryan, McConnell, Schumer all had a front row seat. Start reading the Conservative Tree House for details. It is all about kickbacks. A large percentage of everything that goes thru the beltway, is skimed away.

How to fix things, start by shutting down the NSA data base and eliminate all tax exempt foundations to start. Sue the f… out of the telecoms and internet for spying on citizens in the name of the government . Can go on but not now

DD More
Reply to  willem post
October 5, 2021 9:47 am

 $50 trillion only buys you five days backup, and assumes the batteries have a full charge at the start of the 5 day “energy drought”.

Also assumes power wheeling from supply areas to shortage areas does not have Line Losses.

Old Yeller sure is a Believer, just when we need a prover.
So if the Biteme Financial can say $3.5T is No Cost, will this plan just be 15x No Cost?

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Devils Tower
October 4, 2021 8:38 pm

Got a 100 lb propane bottle at Tractor Supply last month and filled it for $70. Moved it and installed it to the regulator to my RV parked at theTexas ranch in anticipation of a hard cold winter. Plus a dozen 20# ers filled and waiting in case they are needed. Gonna go cut and collect mesquite wood in a few weeks to make wood piles for 2 fire rings to sit around and drink beer … and wondering how the city folk are doing.

Texas WUWTer’s are welcome to come join me in November for some night drinking beer sitting around fire rings with a nice view of blinking red lights from useless wind turbines 25 miles away in Comanche County.

Devils Tower
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
October 4, 2021 8:50 pm

Invest in a carbide tipped chain for your saw for cutting mesquite. Get a real full chisel chain and not the moronic anti kick safty chains our gov regulators have set us up with.

I used to tell folks around here to make sure they had salvage rights to the wind turbines. I was wrong, their is no salvage value…

Here I have ground geo, backup propane, backup electric, a fireview wood stove, and several low voltage (no power fireplaces). Still may not be enough. Plenty of fire wood after Derecho last year.

Will not touch an air source heat pump…

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Devils Tower
October 5, 2021 2:33 am

We had an air source heat pump in central Virginia and used it for one year. Then we got a fireview soapstone wood stove and never went back.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
October 5, 2021 2:31 am

I will be joining you in spirit! I’m supposed to be in Houston in January for a meeting but am still on the fence about that. They may not allow me to enter the US without the jab….

Dave Fair
Reply to  Pamela Matlack-Klein
October 5, 2021 9:18 am

Ask Fauci how long the ChiCom virus will be circulating among humanity.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Pamela Matlack-Klein
October 5, 2021 2:42 pm

Just fly to Mexico and walk across the U.S. border. No jab needed, no passport needed, no identification needed. We are easy to get along with here in Uncle Sucker country.

David Brewer
Reply to  Tom Abbott
October 8, 2021 7:02 am


John VC
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
October 5, 2021 9:36 am

Sounds like you are not too far from me–west of Brownwood a bit.
An interesting aside—My place is located on an old gas lease, one of the wells is on my property (unfortunately I do not have mineral rights). Several years ago, the lease holders disconnected the compressor that was pushing the collected gas into a west Texas main, and then filed bankruptcy–the price of gas had dropped that much, and it is an old field–probably 50’s vintage wells. Since then the lease ownership has changed several times, but there has been no one out checking the wells or surface collecting lines at all. That is until yesterday when a young fellow showed up..said his grandad had the lease and sent him out to see what was what. Amazing what the price for natural gas can do when it goes up.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
October 5, 2021 12:53 pm

See you there, I’ll bring Guinness extra stout. Also a load Missouri white oak.

October 4, 2021 6:18 pm

Such total nonsense and blithe ignorance makes me worried about the management of economic policy.

Reply to  Bernie1815
October 5, 2021 4:43 am

Ummm… WHAT management????? Spenthrifts are in charge now. I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Bernie1815
October 5, 2021 2:45 pm

You *should* be worried. This woman thinks there are viable battery backup options! She is clueless, yet she is in a very powerful position. There’s a lot of this going around nowadays.

Robert Hanson
Reply to  Bernie1815
October 16, 2021 2:34 pm

Makes you worried? Seriously? You should be way past worried by now.

October 4, 2021 6:19 pm

Rare earths? The Green blight? Rape… rape-rape Gaia? Gentrify Bambi’s home? Prisoners of the sociopolitical racket? All to curb a minority effect, at best, and a net neutral effect, at worst. A phobic reaction to ordinary perturbations and previously unrecorded point events now on record.

Tom Halla
October 4, 2021 6:20 pm

Yellen probably assumes something like Moore’s Law applies to batteries. Which illustrates both her ignorance and arrogance.

Reply to  Tom Halla
October 4, 2021 6:59 pm

Thomas Edison used Nickel Iron batteries which compare to Nicad or Nickel medal hydrate. Our best battery today is Lithium and is maybe a 4 times improvement over the 100+ year old battery. I have watched battery development over the last 45 years or so and I think it likely we aren’t going to see much change for a long time to come. The basic way the battery chemistry functions is the limiting factor and todays battery function could have been predicted with knowledge known for many years. It’s wishful thinking that batteries are going to save us. Yes they work for small jobs but even auto applications are pushing the limits of what batteries can do.

The problem is our leaders have no idea what science is. They think anything they can dream up is possible. That isn’t the case and likely never will be. We need to live in the limits of what can be and not what we would like it to be.

Tom Halla
Reply to  Dena
October 4, 2021 7:23 pm

A fair number of greens online act as if Heinlein’s fictional Snipstones are on the horizon. Of course, Heinlein knew science well enough that possession of the trade secret for making them in “Friday” led to the company dominating the whole economy.

alastair gray
Reply to  Tom Halla
October 4, 2021 9:36 pm

Remember Heinlein and his description of ” The Crazy Years” Well here we are . Maybe, stretching the sixties SF link, we need Hari Selden Psyco-history and a Second Foundation to see us through. Come to think of it isnt Elon Musk a bit of a Shipstone type , and a fan of SF of that era?

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Tom Halla
October 5, 2021 8:44 am

I believe you meant “shipstones”.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Dena
October 4, 2021 8:34 pm

The US Dept of Energy is sinking tons of money into The Search For The Magic Battery.

Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 5, 2021 3:56 am

Funnily enough there already is one. It’s called hydrocarbons.

Reply to  Dena
October 4, 2021 9:13 pm

I’m no scientist and unfortunately I can’t remember the names, but I remember reading an article where a real scientist stated there are a couple of different laws of physics preventing any quantum leap in battery technology for the foreseeable future.

alastair gray
Reply to  wadesworld
October 4, 2021 9:45 pm

Someone made the point on a post here that Moore’s law works because we are shuffling electrons around. Batteries are shuffling ions around which are much more massive
Mass of electron 9 * 10 ^-31
Mass of Lithium ion = 1.2 *10^-26
A factor of about 100,000

Reply to  alastair gray
October 4, 2021 9:57 pm

Opposite factors in play as well. Silicon chip circuits got smaller and thus more powerful from increased density . Batteries have to get bigger to be more powerful

Dave Fair
Reply to  wadesworld
October 5, 2021 9:38 am

Look, people, today’s technology is what it is. Tomorrow’s technology will be better, but we don’t know what it will be and can’t count on it for planning purposes today.

The Yellens of the world assume that you can make firm plans to change your entire energy system on assumptions about future technology and Man’s ability to live without FFs. There are no novel technologies on the horizon, however, that will allow Man to make revolutionary (as opposed to evolutionary) changes to his energy systems.

Most “great ideas” die out under capitalistic systems, only the truly viable make it. Under socialistic systems, “great ideas” linger and cause real harm to real people. Capitalism allows for creative destruction of old, out-of-date ideas. Socialism retains old, out-of-date ideas because of a combination of ideology and bureaucratic inertia.

David Guy-Johnson
Reply to  Dena
October 5, 2021 12:02 am

And there are enough activist scientists around to persuade them that going green is easy peasy and cheap

Dave Fair
Reply to  David Guy-Johnson
October 5, 2021 9:40 am

“Investments” in green have zero or even negative costs, doan’cha know? Xiden tells us so.

Coach Springer
Reply to  Tom Halla
October 5, 2021 7:18 am

Moore’s Law concerns presumed development in the future. Economic problems are in the present tense. So, she’s obviously and blatantly wrong twice. Making it sound like intentional deception.

On the outer Barcoo
October 4, 2021 6:26 pm

Sometimes it’s better to keep your mouth shut and have everybody think that you’re a fool, rather than opening it and removing all doubt.

Dave Fair
Reply to  On the outer Barcoo
October 5, 2021 9:41 am

No, I like being able to identify the fools in government and elsewhere. The great thing is politicians can never keep their damned mouths shut.

Reply to  On the outer Barcoo
October 6, 2021 6:53 pm

She’s giving a demonstration that energy storage is unnecessary, because this administration has an infinite supply of hot air.

Robert of Texas
October 4, 2021 6:27 pm

I still don’t know how you build enough wind turbines. Assuming 30% nameplate average output, and the fact that the best areas are already being filled with turbines how do you just keep building wind turbines and getting the same production out of them? Too many close together and they start slowing the wind down for the turbines behind them. There is an energy limit to what can be extracted from the wind per square mile.

Once everything becomes “green” one would suppose that subsidies no long er apply, so the true cost of the energy should then becomes apparent – too late to do anything about it but apparent. Electricity will be twice or more as expensive as it is from natural gas. If electricity makes up 10% of your living costs, it suddenly becomes 20% (or more) in the space of a few years. Many of the costs will be hidden as taxes and fees so people will stay confused about the true costs.

If you are going to level out the peaks and the troughs of production, then you must build a massive battery infrastructure. It seems like about 10% of it will either be burning or already burned and in the process of being replaced, or just old and needing to be replaced. Peaks and troughs happen over seasons, so you need enough batteries to store some percent of 3 to 4 months of production. Where are all these batteries going to be sitting? What happens when a massive fire breaks out in a super battery-farm?

None of this is at all reasonable. How can people in senior government positions be so stupid?

Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 4, 2021 6:50 pm

Kind of sounds like government debt.

Jon R
Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 4, 2021 8:20 pm


Reply to  Jon R
October 4, 2021 10:41 pm

Invented by ancient Greeks. It’s been on ongoing process over the centuries. In last century women were the final ones to get franchise, hardly anything to do with burning factories…that sort of unrest was delt with by 8 hour day, healthcare and pensions etc which started in Bismarck Germany well before the franchise

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 4, 2021 8:29 pm

You owe your soul to the company store.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
October 5, 2021 9:46 am

Good old Tennessee Ernie Ford!

alastair gray
Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 4, 2021 9:58 pm

The black death is seen by many as the catalyst that ushered in a new age of renaissance and huge societal change. Maybe we are on a similar cusp of human affairs ? Ask Hari Selden. Another narrative from the past is the Tower of Babel which certainly fits with all the Yellen and Babble from our leaders

Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 5, 2021 5:07 am

Wasn’t the whole point to “Foundation” the collapse of society? Heinlein tried to address the same thing in “Revolt in 2100” — you were kicked out of Coventry if you didn’t “fit in”. Huxley did the same thing in “Brave New World”, and let the ‘barbarian’ in to disrupt the complacent.

Are we on a “tipping point” yet? Just askin’, because I need to stock the pantry…. and get more of those pre-20th century cookbooks (no modern electric appliances!!), just in case.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 5, 2021 12:41 pm

Eric, that’s my worry about almost every adaptation lately. I’ve heard someone is trying to do The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. Can you imagine how badly Hollywood would butcher THAT?

DD More
Reply to  alastair gray
October 5, 2021 10:04 am

Alastair – “black death, the catalyst that ushered in a new age of renaissance and huge societal change.”

See James Burke’s Connections series, #4 – “Faith in Numbers”, and how the Black Death influenced cultural development.
Great population loss, but capital (homes & land) still the same. Because so fewer people, had to automate.

alastair gray
Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 4, 2021 9:49 pm

or we pretend to work and they pretend to pay us

Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 5, 2021 4:55 am

Mother Earth News used to post articles about using wind and solar energy to keep your home lit and running. That was on an individual basis, and the writers of those articles never once suggested – even remotely – any kind of industrial amplification into networks and large-scale plantations.

On an individual basis, it worked most of the time. Where on earth the wind/solar scammers got the notion that they could just magnify that to what it has turned into is beyond me, but no one anywhere did the due diligence required for the current expansion into giant “farms” that kill off wildlife and leave trash behind.

I figure this is a fad, like all the rest of the greenbeaner idiocy, purely impractical at its best and lethal at its worst, and it will eventually end. But so will this warm period in which we are “flourishing”, so….

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Sara
October 5, 2021 3:02 pm

I saw an article in the Washington Post yesterday reporting that Biden has reimposed penalties for oil and gas companies that accidentally k!ll protected birds.

I read the whole article and right down at the end they mentioned that windmills sometimes k!ll birds, too, but they didn’t condemn this destruction and they didn’t say Biden was going to penalize windmill companies for k!lling birds. Just the oil and gas companies.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Robert of Texas
October 4, 2021 8:27 pm

The alarmists, if they even bother to do calculations, typically do a linear extrapolation for the number of wind-turbines needed, without realizing that (like hydroelectric installations) most of the best locations are already taken. Thus, the linear extrapolation becomes a lower-bound (Very much lower!) on the required installations. Also, little thought is given to the tradeoffs in land-use once most of the sites are allocated.

alastair gray
Reply to  Robert of Texas
October 4, 2021 9:48 pm

long ago I heart one of our Members of Parliament talking about Northe Sea oil, a subject of which I know a lot. It was complete delusional nonsenese but he sounded plausible. I have always since then assumed that when a politician talks in and informed and sensible way on subjects on which I am not an expert, he may also then be talking drivel.

Shoki Kaneda
October 4, 2021 6:27 pm

Yellen is a potent source of high temperature CO2. She should go. You know, for the good of the planet.

Thomas Gasloli
October 4, 2021 6:33 pm

If she, as treasury secretary, can’t figure out the Dems spending plans are insane, then you can’t expect her to have a clue about anything else.

Another elderly fool who should have been transferred to the old folks home instead of yet another position where she can screw things up.

Reply to  Thomas Gasloli
October 4, 2021 10:43 pm

Do different to Trump’s unpaid for tax cuts. The Dems will largely reverse those tax cuts over 10 years

Dave Fair
Reply to  Duker
October 5, 2021 9:52 am

Like all other tax cuts, President Trump’s tax cuts increased revenue to the Feds. The fact that the Swamp merrily spent it all, and more, doesn’t mean it didn’t work as intended in improving the U.S. economy.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Dave Fair
October 5, 2021 3:05 pm

That’s the thing about tax cuts, they bring in more revenue to the government and they improve the economy, which is the reason they bring in more revenue after the taxes are cut.

Tax cuts stimulate the economy every time they are tried.

Tax increases reduce economic activity every time they are tried.

October 4, 2021 6:37 pm

She forgot Build Back Better in her reply…how foolish

Ron Long
October 4, 2021 6:39 pm

Good comments about the cost of battery storage, Eric. I am always surprised when seemingly intelligent persons (yes, Yellen) make truly stupid statements. It suggests a character flaw, wherein you accept something just because everyone else says so (her surroundings are full Monty on CAGW, so that’s all she hears). There’s a never-ending of Reality Checks unfolding now, we’ll see if there is a general awakening. Don’t wait for it.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 4, 2021 7:24 pm

She is a government shill. She would tell us the sky is green if she needs to.

Smart Rock
Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 4, 2021 8:25 pm

… even people who don’t personally have a shallow understanding of the engineering issues.

It’s not rocket science. Common sense, an open mind and a secondary school education will get you to an understanding of the biggest problem with intermittent generation, namely the need for dispatchable backup on permanent standby.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 5, 2021 6:28 am

The problem occurs when non-technical people in high positions become marginally aware of new advances in technology and think “Yes, that’s the obvious answer to this problem!”. Yellen is an obvious example of the Peter Principle.

For instance she could have become aware of Ultracapacitors which are actually being used in wind turbines to replace the lead acid batteries used for pitch control.

Reply to  Ron Long
October 4, 2021 9:20 pm

She is an example of what George Orwell termed “doublethink”: The ability to know and not know. He wrote that only members of the party elite could live with the fundamental contradiction of deliberately ignoring what they actually know. It is the ultimate form of hypocrisy.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Bernie1815
October 5, 2021 1:03 am

Lewis Carroll thought of that a century and a half ago …

“Alice laughed. ‘There’s no use trying,’ she said. ‘One can’t believe impossible things.’
I daresay you haven’t had much practice,’ said the Queen. ‘When I was your age, I always did it for half-an-hour a day. Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast. There goes the shawl again!”
Charles Dodgson had all sorts of insight we’ve forgotten.

October 4, 2021 6:40 pm

During the same hearing, Yellen was asked about the Federal debt. Her reply was that with the Govt. effectively paying 0.0% interest on the debt, there was no constraint on current or future borrowing. So her solution is that the Govt. can borrow as much free money as it would take.
Easy, no problem.
She is the Treasury Secretary.
And this is why the US is in such big trouble.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  TonyL
October 4, 2021 8:31 pm

… the Govt. can borrow as much free money as it would take.

Well, it has always worked in the past!!!

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  TonyL
October 4, 2021 8:38 pm

This is standard leftist monetary thinking, been around for years.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
October 5, 2021 1:07 am

That’s why socialist countries have always been so economically successful. They have found the secret to “free money”. Why haven’t free market economies learned these methods?

Reply to  TonyL
October 4, 2021 10:17 pm

If we can borrow as much money as we want, why collect income taxes? Why do the Democrats want to increase the IRS? We should do away with the IRS, let everyone keep all the money they earn, let the government print whatever money they need for their purposes, raise the minimum wage to $100 per hour, and we can all be rich!

Reply to  Bills
October 5, 2021 1:03 am

Simpler and cheaper just to adopt the leaf as currency.

Reply to  Bills
October 5, 2021 12:44 pm

We should do away with the IRS, let everyone keep all the money they earn,

IRS isn’t about revenue, it’s about control.

Dave Fair
Reply to  TonyL
October 5, 2021 9:57 am

And interest rates will always be low. I guess she thinks Xiden and the Dem’s inflation will effectively cancel the debt. But our “leaders” seem to never think about the costs of future government borrowing. I lived during “Stagflation.”

October 4, 2021 6:42 pm

… If Energy Secretary Janet Yellen..

Sadly, Eric, Yellen is the Treasury Secretary, not Energy (correct in the title, and later in the text of this piece), and supposed to be an economist and an educator. Your point is correct, in any case, since she is supposed to be able to do the math, and obviously has not.

October 4, 2021 6:47 pm

If Energy Secretary Janet Yellen has calculated how much must be spent on energy storage to stabilise a 100% renewable grid, she does not seem keen to share.

Mark Mills did the sums on lithium batteries just for the US grid and reckoned it would need 1000 years production of Tesla’s battery megafactory and that wasn’t replacing them as they died. Some more fantasmagoricals here-
If You Want ‘Renewable Energy,’ Get Ready to Dig | Manhattan Institute (manhattan-institute.org)

No problems for our climate changing Janet as she has her hands on unlimited cash. No problems with that you reckon dearie?
Stocks Extend Drop on Risks From Inflation, China: Markets Wrap (yahoo.com)

Chris Hanley
Reply to  observa
October 4, 2021 8:07 pm

Quoting from the Manhattan Institute study summary:
‘The annual output of Tesla’s Gigafactory, the world’s largest battery factory, could store three minutes’ worth of annual U.S. electricity demand. It would require 1,000 years of production to make enough batteries for two days’ worth of U.S. electricity demand. Meanwhile, 50–100 pounds of materials are mined, moved, and processed for every pound of battery produced’.

Dave Fair
Reply to  observa
October 5, 2021 10:08 am

observa, you make the classical mistake by assuming that government economists care about the economy in general. They care only about the government’s ability to generate and print money sufficient for the transitory purposes of the current political compromise. Under the current U.S. political paradigm, that means perpetually spending more than you take in to appease the existing “intersectional” plurality. With the resultant governmental interventions in the economy and engendered inflation, average people’s lives will be worse off. Since the people won’t be aware of the cause, however, the Deep State carries on.

October 4, 2021 7:29 pm

Where did they find this lunatic?

Reply to  Art
October 4, 2021 7:57 pm

Yellen is a policy trainwreck recycled from the Obama administration.

Mike Dubrasich
Reply to  TonyL
October 4, 2021 8:23 pm

One of many recycled trainwrecks. Rewarding abject failure seems to be a theme with the Crazy Joe administration. If you screwed everything up before, then do the same again today.

The junta is orchestrating the destruction of America. Why? What made these people so evil and stupid?

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Mike Dubrasich
October 5, 2021 1:11 am

You’re forgetting that the only purpose of the Democrat party, apart from a very few confused holdouts, is the perpetuation of the Democrat party … nothing more and nothing less

Reply to  Rory Forbes
October 5, 2021 12:05 pm

All political parties form to get something from a government, because only government can use force to get what it wants. There is no other reason for political parties to exist.

Chris Hanley
Reply to  Art
October 4, 2021 8:18 pm

How about the proposed Biden-nominated banking tzar, graduate of Moscow State University on a Lenin Scholarship who would like in effect to nationalise US banks.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Chris Hanley
October 5, 2021 10:16 am

“Omarova is noted for her support for a “National Investment Authority” (NIA),[9] a proposal she has likened to New Deal-era programs. The proposal was first developed in 2015 in conjunction with Robert C. Hockett, a fellow Professor of Law at Cornell Law School.[10] Omarova has stated that an NIA would be responsible for “devising, financing, and executing a long-term national strategy of economic development and reconstruction.”[11]
In a recent paper “The People’s Ledger: How to Democratize Money and Finance the Economy,” she has proposed an “overtly radical reform” plan for the Federal Reserve to “effectively end banking as we know it”, to offer consumer bank accounts and become “the ultimate public platform for generating, modulating, and allocating financial resources in a modern economy, calling this plan “ultimately a more pragmatic and sensible response to the challenge of democratizing finance.” She has advocates expanding the Federal Reserve’s mandate to include the price levels of “systemically important financial assets” as well as worker wages.”

She learned nothing from her time in the Soviet Union. Most educated ex-Soviets run away from socialism, not embracing it as Omarova obviously does.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Chris Hanley
October 5, 2021 10:18 am

And “The proposed NIA would be made up of two components: a “National Infrastructure Bank (NIB), as well as and a National Management Corporation (which she nicknames “Nicki Mac”), which would serve to invest in green technologies.[14] A 2020 article published in The New York Times reported that the proposed NIA would function in a manner similar to the Federal Reserve, and compared the NIA framework to the Reconstruction Finance Corporation created in 1932.”

Those Five Year Plans worked so well. And Freddie Mac had nothing to do with the worldwide 2008 financial collapse.

October 4, 2021 7:30 pm

I keep saying this ….. another typical “shoot, ready, aim” proponent. Despite all the known renewable energy limitations and failures it remains to be a darling of the politicians and supported by the MSM. We, the people, need to protect ourselves from this faulty reasoning by voting for our choices in politicians and news sources.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  markl
October 4, 2021 8:36 pm

The trouble is, the know-nothing wordsmiths that constitute the MSM are telling everyone to vote against us.

willem post
October 4, 2021 7:45 pm

Yellen should mind her own business.
She knows NOTHING about energy systems.

Germany and the UK energy systems analysts have known for decades, that if you have a significant percentage of wind on your grid, you better have enough OTHER power producing plants to COUNTERACT any lack of wind.

Here is an article that is not BACK OF THE ENVELOPE

The article assumes “wind plus solar” is 50% of what power producers annually load onto the New England grid.

The article analyses 3 counter-acting strategies, including batteries.

A wind/solar lull is assumed equal to 15% of what would NORMALLY be produced, during the lull, annual average basis.



Production Shortfall due to Wind/Solar Lulls
The graphs show periods when the sum of wind/solar production is only about 15% of what would be the average production for that time of year.
The wind/solar lull periods occur, at random, throughout the year, and may last up to 5 to 7 days.
A second, usually shorter lull, may follow a few days later.
The annual average load on the NE grid from:
All sources would be about 115 billion kWh, or 0.315 billion kWh/d, or 1.890 billion kWh for 6-days
Wind/solar, at a future date, would be 50% x 1.890 = 0.945 billion kWh for 6 days
Wind/solar, during a 6-day lull, would be 15% x 0.945 = 0.142 billion kWh for 6 days
Wind/solar shortfall would be 0.945 – 0.142 = 0.803 billion kWh for 6 days

Battery Systems to Counteract the Shortfall
Per Battery University, for long life, say 15 years, Li-ion batteries should not be discharged to less than 15%, and not be charged in excess of 80%; i.e., a working range of 65%. That range also happens to have the highest efficiency. See URLs
The battery could be 80% full at the start of the wind/solar lull (highly unlikely), to draw 65% of rated capacity, to provide the shortfall.
Because the battery performs other functions, in addition to counteracting wind/solar lulls, a battery “fullness” of 75% would be more likely, i.e., 75 – 15 = 60% of rated capacity would be available to counteract the shortfall
The battery rated capacity would be at least 0.803, shortfall x 1/0.60, available withdrawal x 1.01, transformer loss = 1.352 billion kWh, delivered as high voltage AC to the NE grid.
A Second Wind/Solar Lull
The battery systems would be near empty after the 6-day lull.
If a second lull would occur a few days later, existing sources would not have been able to fill the battery in those few days, i.e., a second battery, of similar capacity, would be needed.
Battery-system aging, under year-round utility service, would be at least 1.5%/y, compounded
Their capacity reduction would be at least 10%, at the 7-y mid-life, and at least 19%, at the 14-y near-end-life.
Turnkey Capital Cost of Battery Systems
The turnkey capital cost of the battery systems would be about 1.352 x $500/kWh = $676 billion, for site-specific, custom-designed, utility-grade battery systems.
Most of the systems would need to be replaced every 15 years.
Such systems are not comparable to mass-produced battery packs for electric vehicles that are used about 750 hour/y

CCGT Plants, an Alternative to Battery Systems 

As an alternative, a spare capacity of 7520 MW of combined-cycle, gas-turbine plants (staffed, fueled, ready to produce), operating at an average output of 75%, could feed the NE grid 7520 MW x 0.75 x (24 x 6) hours x 1/1.01, transformer loss x 1000 kWh/MWh = 0.804 billion kWh for 6 days, slightly more than the above shortfall. 

Some of the shortfall could be provided by: 1) ramping up the outputs of other sources, and 2) curtailments, i.e., demand shifting/shedding, and 3) rolling blackouts, i.e., more severe demand shifting/shedding.

Bonus: The CCGT plants could easily provide any shortfall, due to a second solar/wind lull, occurring shortly after the first lull. All they need is low-cost, very-clean-burning, near-zero-particulate, low-CO2 natural gas, of which the US has a plentiful supply.

Turnkey capital cost of the CCGT plants would be about 7520 MW x $1000000/MW = $7.52 billion
They would last at least 40 years.

Pat from kerbob
October 4, 2021 7:52 pm

I see the problem with her initial statement

Corrected here

“ Climate change POLICY is an existential threat to the US economy “.

Gregory Woods
Reply to  Pat from kerbob
October 5, 2021 4:02 am

and I see it as Treason…

Joel O'Bryan
October 4, 2021 8:08 pm

The problem with cost estimates taken to the extreme is that ‘price per widget’ rises as demand increases. Using a fixed, current-day cost for say a battery if you demand only one or a few is okay in cost projections. But if you present trillions of dollars to demand a billion batteries then scarcity will drive the prices increasingly higher during the acquisition, making it asymptotically more difficult to purchase as the units are delivered.

John the Econ
October 4, 2021 8:39 pm

Where are these unicorns of which they speak, and how much will they cost?

alastair gray
October 4, 2021 9:23 pm

dementia is infectious. You can catch it from your boss

Dave Fair
Reply to  alastair gray
October 5, 2021 10:30 am

And that is why I quit the Federal Government while at a fairly high level; the only performance criteria was to make your boss look good.

October 4, 2021 9:30 pm

Such kind of dangerous clown is bringing the new normal all around the World :

the new normal.png
It doesn't add up...
October 4, 2021 10:33 pm

Anyone who thinks storage is the solution has never looked at the problem. Your storage must be capable of redelivering at close to peak demand, and must be able to absorb a substantial surplus of similar magnitude, which means either colocation with generation or a very large increase in grid transmission capacity to handle demand and routeing surplus generation to store. Thenn you’ll need storage of the order of a month’s consumption.

October 4, 2021 11:10 pm

Guess who is in the pay of CCP

Stephen Skinner
October 4, 2021 11:43 pm

She looks like the kind of person that can fix a plug. Do I have to put the ‘Sarc’ word at the end?

Reply to  Stephen Skinner
October 5, 2021 6:04 am

We are unfortunately seeing that vacuous stare from many in positions of power. They are able to mumble gibberish, and while quite proud of themselves, their puppet masters pull the levers.

Rory Forbes
October 5, 2021 12:39 am

One thing is for certain, she seems adept at talking out of her ass. I’m guessing she knows even less about economics than she does about “climate”. Anyone who believes that any of them have the vaguest interest in the climate or the US economy is sadly delusional. It has been clear for more than a generation that, but for a few holdouts, the Democrat party is interested in nothing but staying in power in perpetuity. The rest is just window dressing for the media.

October 5, 2021 12:42 am

Yes, the same absurd denial of physics, economics and engineering on the subject of energy is found in establishment circles in the UK. Even in people with science degrees or background in economics.

Its really, really weird. If this were WWII they would be proposing doing D-Day with sailing ships on the grounds that the real problem was to avoid the noise of engines, and that sailing ships would do the job cheaper.

Its the continuing approach of, do things that are either impossible, unaffordable or incredibly environmentally destructive (or often all three) to address an imaginary problem. Which most of the time, even if you do it, it will make no difference to the supposed problem.

As with, lets convert Britain to hydrogen which we derive from natural gas. First convert the whole transmission network, including the internal pipework. Then replace all the boilers and stoves. Then make your hydrogen by processing natural gas (which produces more emissions). And when you have got through with all this, you have made negligible reductions in UK CO2 emissions. In fact you may even have increased them.

And the UK emissions you are trying to reduce are anyway a negligible proportion of global emissions.

It is completely insane.

Peter K
October 5, 2021 12:53 am

Perhaps the Treasury Secretary is having trouble with the return on investment bit.

Eric Vieira
October 5, 2021 1:15 am

There are unfortunately too many people in leading positions who “believe” instead of having solid knowledge about the facts. This situation is unfortunately the hallmark of a decadent civilization.

Peta of Newark
October 5, 2021 1:55 am

How to cost storage is just = brain-ache
Barely a few days ago, Alibaba felt duty-bound to send me something and I ventured into the Big Batteries they sell.

Starting with a chunky 3.2Volt 500Ah LiFeO4 cell, I got a cost of

  • … 15pence (UK) for the battery
  • … for 1 Watt.hour storage
  • … and cell-life of 2,000 cycles

General rule-of-thumb says we double that 15 pence to transport and install the beast, thus = £300 per kWh for the installed & working battery

But its 2,000 cycle life bring is all full circle and it thus ‘battery cost‘ amounts to 15pence for every kWh that cycles through the thing.

This is before you’ve begged/borrowed/stolen/bought/made any electricity.

Maybe now take into account charging/discharging and conversion losses, let’s say= 20 pence per kWh

Which to a very first approximation doubles the current UK retail price of UK electricity. Everything can only track inflation there-after…

Which planet are these people on, who are they talking to, who is selling this garbage?
What happened to honesty, decency and trust?

October 5, 2021 3:20 am

Did you factor in that the energy storage ability of batteries goes down with time, so the average storage is less than the amount you think and that they need regularly replacing at huge annual cost.

In the UK we have used pump storage to store nuclear energy overnight and release it the next day. But, as the top civil servant in the department told me about two decades ago: “we’re used all the good sites”. (three). And as I calculated, we needed well over 100 of the same sites.

October 5, 2021 3:47 am

The only thing Yellen knows about energy is it comes in a little plastic bottle and has 4hour in front of it.

Nate Redshill
October 5, 2021 5:08 am

Re: redistribution/storage of energy: the using of pumped-storage water reservoirs a la the Northfield Mountain Project on the Connecticut River in Massachusetts. Northfield had nighttime power production used to pump water from the river which was then fed back through penstocks and generators during the daytime. True, the variation of water levels may have caused the slow collapse of the railroad bridge at East Northfield (one mid-river concrete pier collapsed 1998; a shoreline pier started collapsing 25 years or so earlier) and the power may have come from the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant. Discuss whether this approach is worth it.

October 5, 2021 5:12 am

The stage is now set for the Jimmy Carter presidency part 2.

Reply to  ResourceGuy
October 6, 2021 1:10 am

Biden is actually making Jimmy Carter look competent and astute.

October 5, 2021 5:23 am

All indicators point to a major carbon tax push to pay for unrelated entitlement spending in the U.S. Janet Yellen is one of the main indicators while looking the other way on the $6 T spending spree in DC. That was the original plan with Waxman-Markey-Obama Carbon Tax Bill and with enough daily propaganda since then they are setting the table for another run at that. Janet knows the plan.

Doug Huffman
October 5, 2021 5:25 am

I wonder if the adjective A. N. I. L. E. will get past the censorious censor-bot.

Yellen even looks like an anile hag.

October 5, 2021 5:53 am

I don’t believe that the president’s program is going to lead to increases in the cost of energy,” Yellen said

Here is a fine example of a safe, no-consequence prediction in the tradition of “who could have known” Jimmy Carter policy from Edward Markey.

Coach Springer
October 5, 2021 7:27 am

The only current readily deployable storage system would be something like this 5 year-old bit of sarcasm that is now beyond parody:
Mercedes trolluje branżę elektrycznych samochodów w SNL. – YouTube

October 5, 2021 7:41 am

There is Obama saying quite clearly energy prices will skyrocket. Who benefits, well guess, it’s not you, son…
The insane money printing going on for the last years is about to unleash hyperinflation – the cargo backed up at US ports has hyperinflated-per-container.
Since this is essentially a financial disaster, the Secretary knows full well what she calculates – a green bubble to inflate out of certain collapse, for a while.
It’s another bailout.

Bruce Cobb
October 5, 2021 7:53 am

Old saying: “Let them eat cake!”
New saying: “Let them store energy!”

Tom in Florida
Reply to  Bruce Cobb
October 5, 2021 2:17 pm

Let them use candles

October 5, 2021 8:07 am

Another resident of the land of jabberwocky. I think she’s saying “Mimsy are the borogoves, and the momraths outgrabe.” Just like her boss.

October 5, 2021 8:58 am

Why can’t Leftists do simple math or exercise simple logic?

A simple napkin note calculation follows for going 100% nuclear power:

100 nuclear plants generate 20% of US’s power.

An 400 additional plants the size of the Palo Verde nuclear facility (the largest in US) could generate more than 100% of current needs, so let’s add 100 more to cover future EV demand for a total of 500 nuclear plants.

Palo Verde cost $12 billion ( in current dollars)
500 new nuclear plants x $12 billion= $6 trillion…

Going full wind/solar would cost roughly $70 trillion, plus the cost per kWh would be 3 times more expensive than nuclear power (an order of magnitude more expensive).

Moreover, if we built LFTRs (Thorium molten salt reactors) instead of LWRs (current nuclear technology) they’d be much safer, efficient and cheaper to build and run, and would require no water because they use Brayton generators.

What is wrong with these people?

Tom Abbott
Reply to  SAMURAI
October 5, 2021 3:17 pm

“What is wrong with these people?”

They are divorced from reality, and the ones who are not, are full of greed and are taking advantage of the situation for personal/political reasons.

Reply to  SAMURAI
October 6, 2021 1:15 am

What is wrong with these people? Answer: They are mental infants in adult bodies who cannot use logic and reason, but use wishful thinking and make-believe instead.

October 5, 2021 9:27 am

How much longer till COP26? They have already booked all the air time and ad placements.

October 5, 2021 11:29 am

Ask not what your government can do for you, but what you can do for the climate crusades.

Giordano Milton
October 5, 2021 12:07 pm

As an economic Keynesian she probably applied this Harry Potter multiplicative approach to energy storage, as well.

October 5, 2021 12:32 pm

These people have an ejaculation when they say what they say.
Debating them is as useful as bebating ejaculates.

Kevin R.
October 5, 2021 12:49 pm

The Left is bound and determined to do for energy what Stalin did for soviet agriculture.

Enough already
October 5, 2021 1:19 pm

What a Silly Bunt…

October 5, 2021 2:19 pm

If you think she’s bad, you should read about the new U.S. Comptroller of the Currency that works for Yellen and who’s appointment Yellen opposed. It’s another Bernie dictate.

James Beaver
October 5, 2021 3:16 pm

The solution is to build several hundred 2GW nuclear power plants, put up a lot of lanscaping to hide the reactors, and label the facility as a “Green Power Storage Facility”.

Presto! Problem solved. It’s a PR problem, not engineering.

October 5, 2021 6:00 pm

They should eat more beans.

October 5, 2021 6:05 pm

Maybe that person doesn’t carry a smartphone, smartwatch (or anything “wearable” “smart”) that needs to be recharged every day, and where the part that wears out the fastest (under normal and prudent use) is the battery…

Or she is a conspitard who believe that:

  • smart thingy makers intentionally put costly, defective, downgraded tech in each device when they could easily make ones that outperforms, on easy to measure dimensions (usable time between charges) all others on the market
  • better energy storage tech exists, it’s just kept hidden by the oil barons

And same issue for all pure electric or hybrid cars: does she believe they are voluntarily kept expensive and low range to make room for ICE cars?

She seems nuttier than Alex Jones.

Walter Sobchak
October 5, 2021 6:10 pm

“US Treasury Secretary Yellen must be totally candid about her department’s green energy generation and storage cost calculations”

I have a portrait of Benjamin Franklin that says they do not have any such calculations. They have never even tried to model the situation. They have just assumed that if they have wall sockets, electricity will come out of them.

October 6, 2021 11:17 am

Yes, it’s true. Janet Yellen is a moron.
To think this clown was in charge of the Federal Reserve Bank.

Andy Pattullo
October 6, 2021 12:17 pm

I don’t believe that the president’s program is going to lead to increases in the cost of energy,” 

It seems the Biden admin is being staffed with innumerate idiots and/or professional liars who think voters are foolish enough to believe spending trillions costs nothing.

George Daddis
October 7, 2021 6:04 pm

Folks must understand that consequences are of no importance.
It is good intentions that matter.

John Lennon forgot to include a CO2 free world in “Imagine”.

October 8, 2021 1:18 pm

My paper of a two years ago came out at £50B per annum CAPEX replacement cost for 1TWH of backup in the UK. Ine days consumption. Based on Lead Acid deep discharge batteries as cheapest, with a 4 year replacement life. That is matched, roughly by Li-Ion at twice the CAPEX per unit energy – if you assume 8 years life. It’s here is you need it.


The CAPEX cost of pumped storage is similar, but lasts longer so is, say, 60 years. Only £3B pa for 1Twh of backup, BUT we don’t have anywhere to put it.

AND ALSO it is equally unnecessary if we prefer to use much less money to build 24/7 zero CO2 nuclear to replace gas and coal.

And, “if you can get through the winter on nuclear ……. you don’t need renewables”. Sir David Mackay, FRS, UK DECC Chief Scientist.

The details are irrelevant, the cost if managing the weak and intermittent energy sources of wind and solar is as economy ruining as it is unnecessary and avoidable.

So YES, spot in. Delusional economic suicide, totally avoidable by using the best solutions, imposed by the wholly incompetent speakers of nonsense who govern us. Not the first idea how engy supply works, and how econmies fundamentally depends upon cheap plentiful energy and maximising energy use per capita. Less is less,

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