Archive for the ‘Big Green’ Category

Credit: cleantechnica.com


This article argues it will never be possible. The killer phrase is ‘energy intensive’.
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Not being a dope, you likely realized a long time ago that it was going to take a lot of energy to manufacture the components of the future green energy utopia, says Francis Menton (via Climate Change Dispatch).

Wind turbines, solar panels, electric cars, and so forth — there is lots of steel, other metals, and silica involved that all need to be melted at high temperatures to get formed into the devices.

How are they going to achieve that at a reasonable cost using just the wind and sun as energy sources?

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Moray East windfarm [image credit: offshorewind.biz]


It turns out that ‘when a windfarm is constrained off or constrained down, it doesn’t actually have to switch off or switch down. It is free to divert power via a private wire to anyone who will pay for it.’ Someone with a big battery, for example.
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I recently noted that Moray East, a very large and very new windfarm situated off the Scottish coast, is spending a remarkable amount of time switched off – something like a quarter of the time, in fact, says Andrew Montford @ NZW.

As is widely known, windfarms can receive so-called constraint payments when the transmission grid doesn’t have the capacity to deliver power from windfarms (typically in the north, and often far offshore) to markets (in the south), so Moray East receiving such payments was not a surprise; only the scale of the payments was.

A constraint payment is worth around £60 per megawatt hour, which is around the fixed price at which Moray East contracted to sell power to the grid.

However, as noted elsewhere, Moray East has failed to take up that contract, and it is therefore able to sell its output into the open market at £200, £300 or even £400 per megawatt hour.

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Seabed mining


The ‘energy transition’ is supposed to replace thousands of coal-fired power stations and over a hundred million barrels of oil per year, amongst other fuels like gas and wood, in the name of an invented ‘climate crisis’. Not going to happen on the scale required, even if this new supply of minerals were to become available – with the aid of fossil fuel powered machinery. All that mining will, or would be, waste product one day.
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A growing number of countries are demanding more time to decide on rules that would allow companies to mine the deep seabed for minerals needed to manufacture batteries for the energy transition, says Climate Change News.

Last year, the small island state of Nauru, triggered a never-before-used procedure giving the International Seabed Authority (ISA), the UN body which regulates mining activities in international waters, until July 2023 to fast-track deep sea mining exploitation rules.

Countries have discussed mining the bottom of the oceans for years but no commercial extraction has started in international waters. The ultimatum would allow the nascent industry to apply for mining permits as soon as next year.

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Governments insist that citizens should obsess about the harmless and beneficial trace gas carbon dioxide. What happens to the waste products when the vast new acreages of solar panels expire?

PA Pundits - International

From the team at CFACT ~

By Steve Miller:

The pathway to a green future involves taking millions of acres of pristine wilderness and turning them into fields of windmills and hot expanses of glistening panels.

The Biden Administration’s goal of supplying 40% of the nation’s energy from the sun by 2035 means covering millions of acres of forest and desert habitat with vast solar panel installations fenced off like prisons. It would require 8,800 square miles of land, or 5.6 million acres, to generate that power (leaving out small installations on buildings and the like) — about the size of Rhode Island and Massachusetts combined.

But the push to convert that land from pastoral to energy-productive is galvanizing a new environmental movement, one led by citizen groups and small non-profits rather than the monied green interests arrayed against them — ones ironically accustomed to casting the fossil fuel…

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HSBC has suspended Stuart Kirk, global head of responsible investing at the HSBC’s asset management division following his presentation the Financial Times Moral Money event last Thursday, Stuart Kirk said “throughout my 25-year career in the finance industry, there’s always some nut job telling me about the end of the world”. One of the slides points out: “Unsubstantiated, shrill, partisan, self-serving, apocalyptic warnings are ALWAYS wrong,”

These statements are true, but telling the truth in an age of universal deceipt is a dangerous thing to do.

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Who is this supposedly green all-renewable energy virtue signalling mega-project actually for, some are asking. The BBC attempts to look behind the curtain, while the Saudis confirm they want to keep selling oil until there either isn’t any more to sell or there are no buyers.
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Glow-in-the dark beaches. Billions of trees planted in a country dominated by the desert. Levitating trains. A fake moon. A car-free, carbon-free city built in a straight line over 100 miles long in the desert.

These are some of the plans for Neom – a futuristic eco-city that is part of Saudi Arabia’s pivot to go green. But is it all too good to be true?

Neom claims to be a “blueprint for tomorrow in which humanity progresses without compromise to the health of the planet”.

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Image credit: MIT


Industrialising the countryside is now deemed a plus for the environment by climate obsessives, including the government. Solar power is ineffective in UK winters, when electricity demand is often at its highest during the long hours of darkness anyway.
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Drawing on new data from the solar industry the campaign group Net Zero Watch has revealed that an astonishing 37,000 MW of land based solar PV capacity is in pre-planning.

If built, this would take 150,000 acres of farmland – or 75,000 football pitches – out of production at a time when Britain has less farmland in use than at any time since 1945, and is losing such land to industrial and other uses at the rate of about 99,000 acres a year, increasing import dependency.

Solar energy should not be permitted to add to this serious problem.

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Digging for cobalt [image credit: mining.com]


Poverty and grim working conditions — that EV drivers would never tolerate in their own workplaces — don’t sit well under the banner of ‘green’ technology. If it’s like this now, what about the supposedly glorious electric vehicle future if it means ever higher demand for cobalt?
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While driving an electric car has fewer environmental impacts than gasoline-powered cars, the production of the parts necessary for these green technologies can have dire effects on human well-being, says Phys.org.

After studying the impacts of mining cobalt—a common ingredient in lithium-ion batteries—on communities in Africa’s Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), an interdisciplinary team of researchers led by Northwestern University is calling for more data into how emerging technologies affect human health and livelihoods.

Such data can inform policymakers, industry leaders and consumers to make more socially and ethically responsible decisions when developing, funding and using green technologies.

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Seabed mining

Trying to replace high-energy coal, gas, and oil with lower energy alternatives to pacify climate obsessives has various drawbacks. One of these is an endless need for huge amounts of minerals, metals etc. that have to be mined from somewhere, which can of course be messy to say the least.
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In a large building overlooking the sea in Kingston, Jamaica, national members of a little known international organisation are meeting for contentious talks that could open up the planet’s deep seabed to mining as soon as July 2023, says Climate Home News.

The ocean floor is rich in mineral deposits, which could provide raw materials to manufacture batteries for electric cars, solar panels and wind turbines.

Prospective mining companies see a lucrative opportunity to turbocharge the energy transition.

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Green blob [credit: storybird.com]

Messing up the local environment for whatever reason is always best done somewhere else. As government-mandated pursuit of renewable [sic] technologies ramps up, ever more industrial dirt-digging aka mining to meet demand is obviously inevitable. 
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Spain’s untapped rare earths are stoking tensions between mining companies and environmentalists and farmers who fear the devastating impact from extracting the minerals considered as essential for a high-tech and low-carbon economy, says Phys.org.

The group of 17 minerals are—despite their name—widely distributed across the globe, but exist in such thin concentrations that extracting even small quantities requires the processing of enormous quantities of ore.

Still, they are key ingredients in a range of high-tech and cutting-edge products, from wind turbines and electric vehicles to smart phones, medical devices and missile-guidance systems.

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Windy Standard wind farm, Scotland [credit: RWE.com]

Ideas, opinions, feedback etc. are invited here. It could be said they’ve already had decades to think about this, but any negativity will no doubt be ignored. Existing uses include children’s play areas and bike sheds, but there’s only so many of those that would find a place.
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One wind farm company is looking for imaginative ways to repurpose turbines at the end of their lives, says BBC News.

When Windy Standard was built in Dumfries and Galloway in the mid-1990s, it was Scotland’s second largest wind farm.

Now it is coming to the end of its functional life and the old turbines are set to be replaced by more powerful machines.

But what happens to the original turbines? Owner Fred Olsen Renewables wants to find creative and sustainable ways to ensure they do not end up in landfill.

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North Wales coast wind turbines

Windy enough today?

Weather conditions can vary year on year, but ‘some of the poorest wind conditions in the North Sea for more than two decades’ probably wasn’t on anyone’s list of scenarios. As a result the not-so wondrous wind turbines are under-performing, and with less electricity to sell comes less profit so shareholders won’t be impressed either. What will next year bring? Place bets now!
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SSE’s renewable energy output over spring and summer was almost a third lower than planned, as low winds and dry weather combined with high gas prices to push up energy prices, reports the Financial Times (via Swiftheadline).

The FTSE 100 energy supplier said on Wednesday its wind and hydro output between April 1 and September 22 was 32 per cent beneath its target — equivalent to an 11 per cent hit to its full-year production forecast.

The summer was “one of the least windy across most of the UK and Ireland and one of the driest in SSE’s hydro catchment areas in the last 70 years”, the company said in a statement.

SSE’s update is the latest sign of how unfavourable weather conditions are hitting the renewables sector.

It comes as a global gas shortage, a rebound in energy demand after coronavirus lockdown restrictions and some of the poorest wind conditions in the North Sea for more than two decades have propelled UK and continental European energy prices this month to their highest ever levels.

Full report here.

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Yes — if it ever gets implemented as planned, and people are willing to accept the inevitably unpleasant consequences.

PA Pundits - International

By Adam Houser and Craig Rucker ~

“Don’t mess with Texas!”

Unfortunately, “messing with Texas” is exactly what so-called “renewable” energy recently did with Lone Star residents.

In mid-February, extreme cold temperatures rocked the state, as well as much of the nation.

Yet, unlike the rest of America, Texas was also hit with widespread power outages leaving millions shivering in the cold. It is believed that dozens have died in the tragedy.

Texas gets approximately 24 percent of its energy from wind and solar, which is significantly more than the rest of the nation. The national average is only 3 percent from wind and solar. As the record cold hit Texas from February 8 to February 16, renewable power generation dropped from 24 percent to an abysmal 8.3 percent as turbines froze and solar panels were covered with snow.

In the weeks that followed, Leftist politicians and the media have…

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[image credit: latinoamericarenovable.com]


How things that need constant subsidies could generate wealth is known only to frequent visitors to Cloud Cuckoo Land. Has this former ‘green energy’ lobbyist never heard of Ponzi schemes? Suffice to say they tend to end badly for the ‘investors’, at least the ones who stay in too long.
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The Liberal Democrats want the government to use profits from green infrastructure projects to create a new fund for climate action and green jobs, reports BBC News.

Leader Sir Ed Davey put forward his “sovereign green wealth fund” proposal at his party’s spring conference.

He said the government raised £9bn last month from auctions to build wind farms on the coasts of England and Wales.

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Crazy world of climate finance [image credit: renewableenergyfocus.com]


So is it about a claimed ‘climate emergency’ or, more likely, ‘an acceptable return for investors’?
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Financing the global shift away from fossil fuels could earn investors trillions, according to discussions at the World Economic Forum.

But there’s not enough data to get the money where it’s needed, says DW.com.

The investment opportunity presented by the transition to a green global economy has been a key topic on the agenda at the 2021 World Economic Forum.

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Would anyone serious bet against it?

PA Pundits - International

By Larry Bell ~

Remember Solyndra?

In case you’ve forgotten, it was a California solar panel developer that defaulted on a $535 million Obama-Biden administration Department of Energy stimulus loan guarantee that, along with four other bankrupted companies, collectively left U.S. taxpayers on the hook for more than $2.2 billion.

According to documents obtained by The Washington Post, the White House had pressed the Office of Management and Budget to greenlight the loan in a hurry.

In response, OMB officials reportedly expressed concern that they were being rushed to approve the company’s project without adequate time to assess the risk to taxpayers.

Energy Department and OMB analysts had reportedly questioned the wisdom of the loan which analysts determined, based upon Solyndra’s own numbers, would rapidly run out of cash.

Another of those bankruptcies involved a 2019 DOE $528.7 million loan it gifted to Fisker Automotive, a start-up company promoted…

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Let’s keep pretending the climate will notice if a few hundred wind turbines are dotted around the seas. Better still, let’s make them even more expensive and unwieldy by adding some new technology that we can’t easily service as it’s miles offshore. It’s claimed that ‘brilliant minds’ will be working on this, but it doesn’t take a genius to see the flaws in the plan.
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Siemens Gamesa and Siemens Energy have today announced plans to invest €120m ($146m) in a five-year strategy to unlock the potential of harvesting green hydrogen from offshore windpower, reports Power Engineering International.

The companies are collaborating on a solution to integrate an electrolyzer into an offshore wind turbine as a single synchronized system to directly produce green hydrogen.

Over the next five years, Siemens Gamesa will invest €80m and Siemens Energy €40m in the initiative, with a view to unveiling a full-scale offshore demonstration by 2025/26.

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Watch this excellent seven minute video and read the twitter thread here by Ben Pile. The climate change committee is using soviet style ‘citizen’s assemblies’ to justify their highly questionable ideas about how we should live to government.

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New pipelines under construction between Russia and China.

A damning new report from GWPF outlines massive new energy projects being undertaken by the CCP which dwarf its figleaf ‘green energy’ enterprises, here’s a short excerpt, but everyone should download and read the full document.

China today relies on fossil fuels for 86% of its total primary energy consumption (58% from coal, 20% from petroleum and other liquids, and 8% from natural gas).28 Rather than curbing its appetite for fossil fuels, Beijing is voraciously seeking more. In the case of coal, China has aggressively relaxed regulations that restricted domestic coal production, seeking to rapidly raise production capacity. ‘In the first half of 2020 China approved 23 gigawatts-worth of new coal power projects, more than the previous two years combined,’ reported
AFP, citing Global Energy Monitor, a San Francisco-based environmental NGO. The CCP approved 141 million tons of new annual coal mining capacity in the first half of 2019. In all of 2018, it approved 25 million tons.

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The cracks in renewable energy policies can be papered over for a while, but when power shortages get acute they’re too big to miss. Meanwhile there’s the escalating cost of trying to deal with the built-in problems due to intermittency.

STOP THESE THINGS

You know RE scammers are on the ropes, when they start talking about non-existent grid-scale batteries, pumped hydro and, the latest lunacy, converting chaotically intermittent wind and solar into hydrogen gas.

In the beginning, when the quizzical pressed them about the inherent unreliability of wind and solar, it was brushed off with glib statements such as “the wind is always blowing somewhere” and faint suggestions that if the sun’s down, the wind will be blowing to make up for it.

As soon as the percentage of wind and solar capacity on the grid gets beyond double digits, their sporadic and haphazard delivery becomes evident for all and sundry. South Australians and Californians are now well-familiar with power rationing, when the sun sets and/or calm weather sets in.

As with every marketing pitch, papering over the cracks as they emerge, is all. And nowhere is that phenomena more acute than in…

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