4pm update. The wind supply has slid down to next to nothing since breakfast time. Wind is providing 2% of demand and RE in total 6GW of 25GW demand. Over 6GW of coal capacity in reserve.
I appreciate that wind watching is not a major concern these days but somebody has to do it because we have three years to rescue or replace Liddell power station to keep the lights on. Consider the contribution of unreliable energy at dinnertime last light. At sunset, half an hour after the marker in the chart below, there was zero solar in the system and the wind was contributing 500MW that was 2% of the demand across SE Australia, the National Energy Market.
All day the windmills were delivering less than 10% of plated/installed capacity as you can see from the chart further down the page. The figures only momentarily dropped below 5% so it could have been worse, it has been down to 2% in recent times and veteran wind watchers recall periods of zero wind.
All the states, Zalli Steggall and the ALP are determined to get rid of coal-fired power at the earliest opportunity in the quest for zero emissions. The pictures demonstrate that those plans cannot work but what are the signs that they are being reconsidered? Where are Audrey Zibelman and the brains trust at the AEMO standing on this? And the Board?
Just as well Tasmania has hydro. The 1.5GW battery of the nation! Not to mention Hydrogen!
The Economist welcomes the emission-control implications of the crisis.
An optimist might see these changes as a silver lining to what is an extremely dark cloud. But that would depend on their being sustained when things return to normal. As François Gemenne of the University of Liège, in Belgium, puts it, “the climate needs a sustained drop in greenhouse-gas emissions, not a year off”.