Lets follow the example of Germany with unreliable energy

Imploding wind industry!

Following the solar industry.

And according to the Hans Boeckler Foundation site here: “No other industry grew so rapidly in the last decades as the production of solar cells has – and none has collapsed as fast.” It all took just 15 years.

The Hans Böckler Foundation describes how small start-ups transformed into tech market stars and then became insolvent one after the other beginning in 2011. Names like Solar Millennium, Q-Cells, Centrotherm, Conergy all collapsed as quickly as they sprang up.

Next the car industry?

Does anyone in the Coalition speak or read German? Or just read English-language accounts of their failing efforts to reduce emissions? That just the latest news, the writing has been on the wall for years. h/t the ever-reliable old Bruce.

The comments following that piece are as important as the content, especially this analysis of the amount of time that various percentages of plated capacity are delivered. “If we look at these graph , from data supplied by seb, we see that at the 90% guarantee level, we have about 4-5% of nameplate. !! Even a 50% guarantee is only around 15% of nameplate.”

Someone explain to the regulators and the politicians and the punters what that means! Don’t waste your time trying to explain it to the ALP or the Greens.

This entry was posted in Global warming and climate change policy, Rafe. Bookmark the permalink.

33 Responses to Lets follow the example of Germany with unreliable energy

  1. Bruce of Newcastle

    Germany has also been using Austria, Poland and other countries as big batteries. When there’s too much wind energy they have to push it onto someone else. And when they’re short of energy they buy from other countries like France.

    We can’t do any of that unless someone wants to build interconnectors to PNG, NZ, East Timor and Indonesia.

  2. John Barr

    Yep, Grab some gullible Investors money then go insolvent. That’s the way the Scam works.

  3. Roger

    The German government isn’t as stupid as ours.

    They’ve stated that coal will be a part of their energy mix for the foreseeable future because a modern economy with heavy industry sector cannot do without the base load it provides (having shifted out of nuclear – oh, the ironing!).

    For this reason Germany is still planning and building new coal fire power plants.

  4. Roger

    And when they’re short of energy they buy from other countries like France.

    Yes, nuclear generated power, and at much greater expense than they could generate it themselves before they started phasing out nuclear in 2011 a knee jerk reaction to Fukushima.

  5. RobK

    , from data supplied by seb, we see that at the 90% guarantee level, we have about 4-5% of nameplate. !! Even a 50% guarantee is only around 15% of nameplate.”
    I have been trying to demonstrate this point for a while now. From personal experience running various businesses off-grid (due to location), no matter how much stored energy capacity you have, there are invariably times of glut, causing reduced capacity factor. Then there are times of insufficient supply which also reduces capacity factor of RE. The nett result is decreasing CF with increasing RE penetration. Given that the grid needs increased modifications, and extra storage attempts to improve reliabilty and in the end you still need some other backup, the cost involved in the scheme is crazy….even the CO2 savings are mythical. The damage to society is very real and will take a while to turn around.

  6. Squirrel

    For some years we have been told that battery technology is advancing in leaps and bounds and that costs are falling rapidly etc. etc. – and yet anything remotely approaching what would be needed for us to rely solely, or even predominantly, on renewables is obviously still a mirage.

    Hardly surprising, then, that the same people who have been relentlessly campaigning for a carbon tax or some other mechanism to “level the playing field” (as they would have it) between fossil fuels and renewables never want to talk about the storage costs and logistics associated with renewables. Instead, they would pretend that “smart meters”, and surge pricing (for those, like them, who can afford it) will solve all the problems.

  7. When corruption runs this deep, there is no need for explanation. The RET, the NEG and everything else is driven and sustained by pure corruption. There can be no other reason for supposedly intelligent people to travel this path.

  8. Tel

    Germans have always struggled to find good leaders. They try so hard to be good Germans and then it all falls in a heap once again.

    Maybe they lack the cynicism gene or something. Is that even possible?

  9. RobK

    Squirrel,
    Demand management is an integral part of RE…becauseRE is expensive. It would make no sense otherwise. It is a compomise the customer must accept.
    To the best of my knowledge the cost of ownership of industrial scale batteries is presently around $180/MWh(Or 18c/kWh), not factoring in cost of the energy to charge them. The holy grail in batteries is $100/MWh (wholesale, US $ inthe US) but ive not heard this has yet been achieved commercially.

  10. RobK

    I should add that if grid scale batteries got down to $100/MWh, then they would work a treat with baseload power (as pumped hydro can in specific sites)…never mind RE.

  11. John Constantine

    Bhutan doesn’t need electricity to be happy.

    “GNH is distinguishable from Gross Domestic Product by valuing collective happiness as the goal of governance, by emphasizing harmony with nature and traditional values as expressed in the 9 domains of happiness and 4 pillars of GNH.[12] The four pillars of GNH’s are 1) sustainable and equitable socio-economic development; 2) environmental conservation; 3) preservation and promotion of culture; and 4) good governance.[13] The nine domains of GNH are psychological well-being, health, time use, education, cultural diversity and resilience, good governance, community vitality, ecological diversity and resilience, and living standards.[14][15] Each domain is composed of subjective (survey-based) and objective indicators. The domains weigh equally but the indicators within each domain differ by weight.[16] ”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gross_National_Happiness

    There is a photo going around the internet of a bare chested beta male ballerina activist, with the slogans in texta on his chest:

    Human rights

    Animal rights

    Athiesm

    veganism

    Feminism

    Are The Future.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gross_National_Happiness

    Nothing except deindustrialisation, decolonialisation and rewilding will satisfy their left.

    If they can break it, they can own it.

    Comrades.

  12. egg_

    Next the car industry?

    Our Dodgy Brothers Gummint has already flagged EVs as the way of da Futurama!

  13. RobK

    John C,
    I went to a soil health field day today. It was going along nicely in a scientific manner, then the whole show went off on a philosophical bent after lunch about what paths you are on and mother nature talking to you…..i had to leave. The hard science bits were good.

  14. Alp and coalition have almost the same energy policy. We are done for really!

  15. Dr Faustus

    “If we look at these graph , from data supplied by seb, we see that at the 90% guarantee level, we have about 4-5% of nameplate. !! Even a 50% guarantee is only around 15% of nameplate.”

    Backtracking the article, this appears to be a characteristic curve of system-wide reliability.

    The graph nicely illustrates the problem with the claim that more RE investment will tend to fix the problems of price and dispatch. Marginal supply from renewables is no more reliable at any point on the curve than the system as a whole. Therefore (absent the constant availability of large scale open-cycle gas, or very large scale and immediately recoverable storage) the nameplate capacity of the whole system must be vastly expanded to deliver the required effective guarantee level.

    For example, if the service standard is that power should be available 95% of the time – and you want to rely on 100% renewables for that supply duty – you would have to build out about 30x the nameplate capacity required to cover full demand.

    The graph also helps those suffering from technology agnosticism. A baseload coal-fired unit would have an output characteristic of something like 90% of nameplate, 95% of the time.

    Luckily, experts tell us that this can easily be managed by a clever set of rules within the NEG.

  16. stackja

    MT wanted an ETS now he wants a NEG.

  17. P

    Is looking m0re and more to me like MT has his sights set on Secy Gen of the UN (as once did a predecessor of his) .

    And here was dumb old me thinking The First President of Aus (when we become a republic) was his goal.

  18. RobK

    Dr Faustus,
    For example, if the service standard is that power should be available 95% of the time – and you want to rely on 100% renewables for that supply duty – you would have to build out about 30x the nameplate capacity required to cover full demand.

    I agree. The situation is not improved a lot with storage because extra capacity of RE is required to recharge storage whilst suppling demand load. So which ever way you cut it, at high RE penetration, even with quick but inefficient OCGT you still need in the order of tenfold the nameplate RE capacity compared to the baseload capacity that would do the job as a sure thing. It cant be cheaper.

  19. Rafe Champion

    Looking at the delivery of Wind and Other hour by hour and day by day on the AEMO Data Dashboard it occurs that the important figure is not the best performance or even the average performance, in the absence of storage (or hydrocarbon backup) it is the lowest performance that is critical. As of five minutes ago around 9.30 Wind and Other were delivering 4% of demand. This was one of the better days for a lot of the time, delivering 10 to 14% until the evening. Other people have been monitoring more carefully and there have been sustained periods with next to nothing even during daylight hours.

    And that is just the beginning, as RobK pointed out to remind me of something else that occurred from Dashboard watching, it is not just meeting the demand that is required, to compensate for bad days there has to be a serious surplus to bank on the best days. Actually that is academic because the surplus can’t be stored and the mere idea of generating a surplus is out of the question. That would require plated capacity at least twice the level of demand at peak performance.

  20. 132andBush

    I went to a soil health field day today. It was going along nicely in a scientific manner, then the whole show went off on a philosophical bent after lunch about what paths you are on and mother nature talking to you…..i had to leave. The hard science bits were good.

    Where was the field day, Rob?

  21. RobK

    123,
    Dandaragan shire WA.

  22. Herodotus

    Corruption is the word. Once you have enough corrupt scientists feeding lines to corrupt or credulous media you have the gormless pollies by the short & curlies. That’s how we end up here.

    The left is now so emboldened by their successes on numerous fronts that they are leveraging gender fluidity (aka insanity) for all it’s worth as a fissure in the formerly cohesive western society. They will now broaden the front to demonisation of the entire white population of the world.

  23. Mark M

    In Europe alone, wind turbine blades will result in over 6.6 million pounds of waste volume by 2038.

    The wind turbine blades presently have no assessed material value.
    Additionally, their extremely large weight and size (routinely about 67 yards or longer) plus the low value of the recycled material are major drawbacks to recycling.
    The blades are made from thermoset plastics, which strengthen while being heated but cannot be successfully remolded or reheated after the initial heating which forms them.
    Instead, they will burn when heated after their initial molding.
    This makes recycling more difficult.

    Solar panels alone will be responsible for approximately 172 billion pounds of waste volume around the world by 2050.
    Each solar panel contains between $3 and $13 worth of metals, too little to make recycling profitable.
    Silicon recovered by recycling the panels is of poor quality, and the presence of heavy metals poses another recycling concern.

    https://www.tnonline.com/adopting-wind-and-solar-energy-not-so-‘green’

  24. Up The Workers!

    Wind industry.

    It’s all micturition and flatulence!

    And if solar power was truly viable, Bob Brown would wear a solar panel stuffed down the back of his jocks for when he wakes up of a morning.

  25. Bruce of Newcastle

    Another confirmation that subsidies are the only thing propping up the wind sector:

    Wind industry admits massive project will fail without subsidies (8 Aug)

    American Electric Power (AEP) announced it is cancelling plans for a massive wind farm project in the Oklahoma panhandle because it cannot get the project approved before generous federal subsidies may run out. AEP’s decision is particularly noteworthy because the U.S. Energy Information Administration documents that the Oklahoma panhandle is one of the most favorable locations in the country to develop wind power. If wind power does not make economic sense in the Oklahoma panhandle, it is hard to argue it makes economic sense anywhere else.

    I suspect very few sites in states like Qld would have wind strengths as good as this one. Yet the Labor government in Qld wants to build massive amounts of renewables in the next 12 years. We are being run by scientific and financial illiterates.

  26. We are being run by scientific and financial illiterates.

    If it looks like corruption, sounds like corruption and smells like corruption, it’s very likely corruption.

  27. John Constantine

    Ruinables electricity are our gateway from racist colonialist settler industrialised exploitation of the planet.

    We are bound upon the Great Push towards a Fair and Equal and Decolonialised and Veganised and Feminised and Athiesed and Socialised deindustrial services society, where clustering together in megacities of happy purring puppy piles, singing songs instead of slaving for money and all our needs provided and rationed by our elites through the State controlled robot sewerage rebirthing plants.

    Windmills and solar panels are not intended to power future industrial capitalist societies, simply to transform us past industry and capitalism into a Glorious workfree future of serving our betters as bespoke service providers and consumption machines.

    We won’t need electricity when we have happiness and obedience medication included in all our rations.

    Comrades.

  28. I’d say that this now proves that the renewables industry no longer requires subsidies: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-08-09/agl-profit-almosts-trebles-on-higher-electricity–prices/10092796

    Energy generator and retailer AGL has reported a near trebling of full year profit, a result supported by higher power prices and favourable hedging contracts.

  29. Herodotus

    a result supported by higher power prices and favourable hedging contracts.

    And how many of those dodgy $85/Mwh “certificates” figured in that profit?

  30. Boambee John

    Herodotus
    #2784737, posted on August 9, 2018 at 11:18 am
    a result supported by higher power prices and favourable hedging contracts.

    And how many of those dodgy $85/Mwh “certificates” figured in that profit?

    Something was posted a couple of weeks ago about a wind power company with total revenue of $200 million, of which $120 million was subsidies.

    Basically a subsidy farm with a sideline in power generation.

  31. P
    #2784338, posted on August 8, 2018 at 6:54 pm
    Is looking m0re and more to me like MT has his sights set on Secy Gen of the UN (as once did a predecessor of his) .

    Hmmm. That would explain Turnbull’s unexplained (at the time) reluctance to support Rudd. If Rudd had got that job, the idea of a second Australian to follow close behind would be out of the question.

    Not that I would ever support Rudd, but it illustrates what a vain, devious creature Turnbull is.

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