Gas fires up the hornets of RE

The Coalition decision to go for gas (and a few other things) has poked a stick into the hornets nest of power generators and the RE industry. It is a move guaranteed to make nobody happy because there is no solution that is generally acceptable and it is hard to imagine a bipartisan policy in the current political situation.

In a world where facts are taken seriously I can imagine a bipartisan agreement on the “four icebergs” problem.  (1) In view of the AEMO data nobody plausibly deny that we  experience frequent and prolonged wind droughts. (2) It is also difficult to deny that the system should be capable of delivering 100% of demand 100% of the time.  Similarly, we need air all the time to survive, and hyperventilating last week does not prevent choking or drowning this week. (3) The island effect. This has hardly surfaced in the public discussion so far because we still have just enough conventional power to get along almost 100% of the time. That will not be the case when Liddell closes unless there is a miracle to conjure up 2GW of additional reliable power out of the blue. (4) The claims that transmission lines, batteries and pumped hydro will solve the storage problem can be refuted but not in the same knock-down manner that applies to arguments 1-3.

This video from Mark Mills and Prager is a miracle of compression to explain the key points with vivid images in 5 minutes.

500 years of production from the Tesla plant to produce enough batteries to store the power that the US consumes in a single day.


On the topic of the island effect, check out Germany’s dependence on her neighbours.  One of the briefing notes in preparation for the politicians will document the amount of power imported by the leaders in RE – Denmark, New York, California etc.

German Electricity Imports Hit New Record, Rise 43.3 Percent in First Half Of 2020!

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15 Responses to Gas fires up the hornets of RE

  1. Wallace

    The solution being worked on at the moment is to balance demand and supply.
    That is, decrease demand by destroying industry and manufacturing.
    This is working very well, thank you.

  2. unless there is a miracle to conjure up 2GW of additional reliable power out of the blue.

    2GW comprised of thousands of 8kVA backup diesel generators, all firing up at dawn and at beer o’clock across the nation. Ah, the serenity.

    Waiting for a journalist to ask Mr Albanese and Mr Morrison when the domestic backup generator ban will be imposed and watch PHON’s vote skyrocket, promising excise free diesel for home generators.

  3. Rafe Champion

    Wallace on the demand reduction side, the National Energy Emissions Audit released by The Australia Institute in July reported that the “emission intensity” of the NEM has reduced by more than 25% from the historical maximum in 2008. 8% of the reduction is due to reduced consumption. They casually mentioned the loss of some electricity intensive activities including two aluminium smelters. Who needs well paid jobs and productive export industries? Other countries can have the jobs and produce aluminium with coal that generates more emissions than ours.

  4. Blah, blah, blah, blah! Another right-wing propaganda video. Says every Leftist/Green who can’t bear to hear the truth, or is simply that far gone that nothing with disperse the fairy dust of their imagination.

  5. Vagabond

    The solution being worked on at the moment is to balance demand and supply.
    That is, decrease demand by destroying industry and manufacturing.
    This is working very well, thank you.

    When I wrote to my MP (a LINO wet in a safe-ish seat) about this I got back a reply saying that she was well aware of the issues and had recommended her colleagues look into a company who had products to assist with “managing” the problem. That’s code for for wishy washy measures such as power factor correction and inevitable load shedding, aka blackouts. When I wrote back explaining the physics and engineering realities in simple language and predicting fury in the electorate as an inevitable result of such “management” there was no reply. The infection of our betters’ minds is much more dangerous and widespread than COVID

  6. Professor Fred Lenin

    Rafe and Wallace , its simple , destroy electricity consuming industries , buy the goods we need from China with money borrowed from China ,then solve the unemployment caused with high paid green jobs ,using money borrowed from China . Buy our food fromChinese owned local farms with money borrowed from China .
    Its quite simple really ,worked out by our highly educated career politicians .

  7. Astatine Jones

    A slickly produced presentation indeed, with some excellent arguments. One could be totally convinced that RE is a waste of time/effort/money…until you go looking for alternative viewpoints and independent verification of some of MM’s’ statements.
    And it goes without saying that there is no mention about the long-term economic and environmental costs of dealing with the effects of pumping increasing amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere (but of course I have forgotten that AGW is a totally fabricated scientific delusion by the NWO Red-Green LGBTQI Whale Conspiracy)!

  8. Rafe Champion

    Given the emission transition (you heard about it here first) the output of CO2 will tend to level off for various reasons. In any case it is unequivocally good for plants and another degree or two of warming will do more good than harm as well, if we are lucky enough to avoid a cold spell.

  9. Rex Anger

    And it goes without saying that there is no mention about the long-term economic and environmental costs of dealing with the effects of pumping increasing amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere

    What costs, Metalloid Malthus?

    The earth has warmed and cooled to its own cheerful designs for a mighty long time, utterly independent of those nasty, breeding, pathologically industrious hew-munz. And it will continue to do so until God says “Enough!” or the sun gets hungry and noms the Solar System (depending on which faith you have chosen).

    Still a troll, Metalloid Malthus. And it’s not merely the disagreeing bit. Statements of contempt like (but of course I have forgotten that AGW is a totally fabricated scientific delusion by the NWO Red-Green LGBTQI Whale Conspiracy)! indicate ‘rational debate’ for you is only when you win, or the other side capitulates.

    If you want to generate proper outrage, the quality of your rhetoric must improve…

  10. Astatine Jones

    Rex Anger:
    Not a statement of contempt, merely a stream-of consciousness attempt at humour (obviously not a good one). However, giving ‘AGW’ any credence here is enough to generate outrage!

    Seriously, I respect anyone’s religious beliefs (well mostly, unless they’re truly offensive), but I can’t really debate on the science of AGW if I’m to be trumped by the ‘God’s will’ argument, can I?

    I’m certainly not one to go around saying ‘the science is settled’ on anything scientific. But I think the weight of evidence is pretty heavy to indicate that humans are warming the planet at an alarming rate through burning of fossil fuels, at the same time acknowledging the great utility that this process generates and the difficulties to be faced in constraining it.

  11. Rex Anger

    But I think the weight of evidence is pretty heavy to indicate that humans are warming the planet at an alarming rate through burning of fossil fuels, at the same time acknowledging the great utility that this process generates and the difficulties to be faced in constraining it.

    Evidence produced by whom? Michael Mann? The IPCC, whose reports have typically cited pro-Deep Green propaganda and attack pieces as peer-reviewed documents?

    What about the Medieval Warming Period? What about the little Ice Age?

    What about the fact we have not even begun to approach the MWP’s peak temperatures? Or that the Northwest Passage opens and closes at will if the summer is a little warmer than average?

    And how can tbe last 25 years, or even the last 10 of temperature stability be explained, while still acceding to the Hockey Stick theory that the Earth has started to cook since the Industrial Revolution? Surely we’d all be significantly hotter by now?

    Who is lying, Metalloid Malthus? Big Oil? Big Coal? Big Eco? Big Arctic and Antarctic Ice Core samples? Big Trees?

    Or is this simply another Trotsky-like corruption of individual and group research and geological archaeology to political ends?

    No matter how you cut it, even the most fanatically pro-environmental activists, philanthropists and Davos-types are proving remarkably reticent at putting their dreams of a low-carbon future into action. They have the money and the public blessing. They have the technology. But where is the will?

    Could it be that the Environment is actually just another useful cause for dominating the masses and parting them from their money and comforts? Like pacifism, disarmament, workers’ rights, womens’ rights, LGBT+ rights, social justice, etc.? That nothing is wrong at all? Or that it does not matter, so long as the right people remain in charge, and we proles are cowed into believing they will solve all our woes for us?

    This business has been circulated by the Vested Interests long before the time I was a mere blueprint, and it will be continuing, for the same reasons of petty dominance and control, long after you and I are both atoms, Metalloid Malthus…

  12. Lee

    But I think the weight of evidence is pretty heavy to indicate that humans are warming the planet at an alarming rate through burning of fossil fuels

    I don’t believe it or the doomsayers for one minute.
    But there are vast sums of money in it for those with vested interests pushing RE (including banks), and the “we’re all going to die, unless we do something about it” mantra.

  13. Squirrel

    One particularly nasty hornet’s nest was stirred up yesterday when Andrew Liveris addressed the Canberra Press Club and quoted the statistic about a millenium of Tesla battery production to store a couple of days worth of US power usage.

    Liveris’ point was, of course, that batteries are not even remotely near being a solution to the unreliability of wind and solar (i.e. the science is certainly NOT in on renewable technology) but the hostility towards him for speaking such heresy was absolutely palpable – I could almost feel it beaming through the TV set.

    Aside from being a powerfully graphic illustration of the zealotry of the climate change crusaders, it also struck me as a sign of the problem that is the Canberra Bubble and the media who call it home – the detachment from reality is dangerous to the national interest.

  14. Rafe Champion

    You have to wonder how many have done the simple arithmetic based on the capacity of the Hornsdale battery, initially 109MWh and now upgraded to 150MWh or thereabouts. Not rocket science!

    As for transmission lines/interconnectors, batteries and “the massive Snowy2.0 pumped hydro scheme”, none of them are generators, how hard is that to understand? Snowy2.0 is a processing plant to convert the intermittent power generated by some 8GW of wind turbines into (hopefully) 2GW of dispatchable (steady or controlled) output. At the cost of (say 12Bil and a bit more) plus some damage to national parks in the vicinity, you get the same power as Bayswater or Liddell.

    So you could say that Snowy2.0 in theory replaces Liddell except (1) we need 2GW more before Liddell closes and (2) after Liddell there is still 18GW of coal capacity to replace, but where are the sites for nine more Snowy schemes? This is borrowed from Mike O’Ceirin’s model of Snowy2.0 that suggests that it (almost) substitutes for a decent-sized coal station like Bayeswater. But it depends on 8GW of windmills so each Snowy scheme calls for another 8GW of wind capacity.

  15. H B Bear

    You can expect the Lieborals to fall over backwards to defend the Snowy 2.0 spend and the paper thin Wafflworth government legacy (and theirs).

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