California is scrambling to avoid blackouts –  not using the refrigerator could help

Posted: January 8, 2021 by oldbrew in Batteries, climate, ideology, Temperature
Tags: , , , ,

Solar power complex in California [USA. Gov – BLM – Bureau of Land Management]


Welcome to the inglorious green revolution, where the lives of ageing gas power plants have to be extended and various other mini ‘solutions’, some relying on equipment owned by individual citizens, have to be adopted in a frantic effort to keep the lights on. Of course none of this was necessary before renewables were deemed to be the future of electricity supply, in the vain hope of altering the climate. What’s next if these measures are not enough?
– – –
Sometime next summer, there’s a decent chance a heat wave will bake the American West, and California’s power grid will again be stretched to its limits, says TechXplore.

As the sun sets, solar panels will start generating less electricity even as temperatures remain high.

Power plants that burn natural gas will fire up as quickly as possible, in a race to keep air conditioners blowing and avert the need for rolling blackouts.

But the fossil fuel won’t be alone in riding to the rescue.

As power supplies tighten, lithium-ion batteries—some connected to sprawling solar farms in the desert and others tucked away in household garages—will dispense electricity produced during the afternoon sunlight.

A small but growing number of household batteries will be part of coordinated networks, discharging in unison as dictated by the needs of the grid.

Meanwhile, millions of people will cut back on electricity use in their homes, in some cases because state officials asked nicely and in others because they’re getting paid to conserve.

Many will have agreed in advance to have their air conditioners automatically turned down a few degrees, or their refrigerators briefly powered down.

As California works to build a future without fossil fuels, electricity generation isn’t just getting cleaner—it’s getting smaller and nimbler.

Big power plants and far-flung transmission lines are increasingly being joined by programmable thermostats, solar-charged batteries and even electric cars as key tools for balancing supply and demand.

These technologies currently play a small role. But supporters say they can help California avoid a repeat of the rolling blackouts that afflicted a few hundred thousand homes and businesses when a regional heat wave struck last August—the type of extreme weather that’s becoming disturbingly common as the world heats up because of the burning of fossil fuels [Talkshop comment – evidence-free assertions].

Nobody knows what kind of weather next summer will bring, and several thousand megawatts of new power capacity already are scheduled to come online in the coming months, mostly large batteries.

But state officials are scrambling to find additional energy resources that can be added to the grid—and six months isn’t enough time to build the type of centralized infrastructure historically favored by utilities and regulators.

Full article here.

Comments
  1. oldbrew says:

    six months isn’t enough time to build the type of centralized infrastructure historically favored by utilities and regulators

    Amazing – who knew? Attempts to reduce demand haven’t worked either.

    Some people will never feel comfortable handing over control of their air conditioner to a third party, even if there’s money in it.

    Some people eh — what are they like?

  2. Chaswarnertoo says:

    ‘Green planning’ …….

  3. oldbrew says:

    As the sun sets, solar panels will start generating less electricity even as temperatures remain high. Power plants that burn natural gas will fire up as quickly as possible, in a race…

    If only they knew in advance when daylight would end 🙄

  4. Gamecock says:

    ‘Power plants that burn natural gas will fire up as quickly as possible, in a race to keep air conditioners blowing and avert the need for rolling blackouts.’

    What kind of business model has you keeping a $30,000,000 gas turbine on standby to back up another producer who is given priority?

    You call in an An-124 and ship it somewhere you can make money with it.

  5. Gamecock says:

    Meanwhile, millions of people will cut back on electricity use in their homes because their power will be off.

    Fixed it.

  6. oldbrew says:

    Check your electric car lease to see if it allows regular draining of its charge by the local power grid, inevitably degrading battery performance and lifespan.

  7. tom0mason says:

    Hopefully Los Angeles will be affected, and my dumb as a box of rocks sister will find out what being an ardent Democrat means. She’s so dumb that she utterly disagrees with capitalism while assisting her husband make and sell up-market diamond jewelry! She also believes that, in an argument, to offer scientific data from peer reviewed papers is just to voice a personal opinion.
    Ho humm, such is family …

  8. Phoenix44 says:

    Once again huge costs to the consumer ignored in calculating the costs of renewables and Net Zero.

    A world of lies and half-truths, used to persuade and coerce us into doing what a tiny fraction of people want.

  9. Gamecock says:

    “Power plants that burn natural gas will fire up as quickly as possible”

    Having laid off all their employees, should take about a year to hire and train replacements.

  10. stpaulchuck says:

    not to worry!! When President #brainfartbiden is sworn in thousands of ships bearing solar panels and windmills will rush to the Left Coast with trillions of gigawatts of green power to save the day. The night on the other hand will be screwed.

  11. oldbrew says:

    The winning formula must be big batteries all round, and early nights.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s