Archive for the ‘Energy’ Category


Irrational fear of a minor trace gas in the atmosphere, largely based on the output of failing climate models, continues to disrupt national energy policies. EU leaders add to the chaos and confusion.

The European Commission turned down Dutch plans to support hydrogen production with subsidies, reports the NL Times.

The government of the Netherlands wants to use hydrogen instead of other fossil fuels to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but because the Dutch plans got shot down, this will not be continued, Climate Minister Eric Wiebes told the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Parliament, on Monday, according to FD.

The government saw possibilities to replace oil, natural gas and coal by hydrogen, especially within heavy industry.

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The plan is to use abandoned coal mining shafts globally as power storage plants, and/or drill their own shafts if necessary. Costs are estimated to be lower than other existing energy storage options (see report for details).
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Gravity has been the center of wonderment for physicists, mathematicians and thinkers of all kinds for centuries, says TechXplore.

In the early 1600s, astronomer Galileo dropped balls from the Tower of Pisa and declared that gravitational acceleration is the same for all objects.

Decades later, Isaac Newton expanded on those thoughts and devised his theory of gravity, that all particles attract all other particles with a force directly proportional to the square of the distance between their centers.

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Time for climate obsessives to look the other way — again.

PA Pundits - International

By Duggan Flanakin ~

The problem of solar panel waste is now becoming evident. As environmental journalist Emily Folk admits in Renewable Energy Magazine, “when talking about renewable energy, the topic of waste does not often appear.” She attributes this to the supposed “pressures of climate change” and alleged “urgency to find alternative energy sources,” saying people may thus be hesitant to discuss “possible negative impacts of renewable energy.”

Ms. Folk admits that sustainability requires proper e-waste management. Yet she laments, “Solar presents a particular problem. There is growing evidence that broken panels release toxic pollutants … [and] increasing concern regarding what happens with these materials when they are no longer viable, especially since they are difficult to recycle.”

This is the likely reason that (except in Washington state), there are no U.S. mandates for solar recycling. A recent article in Grist reports that most used solar panels are…

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If the U.S or anywhere else thinks it needs to spend a fortune on energy innovation to meet ‘critical needs’, which may or may not deliver anything useful, what does that say about existing technologies like wind and solar power? This report suggests they’re at least 50% short of reaching the pie-in-the-sky targets of climate alarmist dreamers with existing (zero emission) technology, so they must now try to invent their way out of trouble with what they call ‘advanced energy’. Good luck with that, if they still intend to shun nuclear power. Will the climate notice anyway, whatever they end up doing?
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Research released today recommends that the U.S. federal government triple its annual investment in energy innovation over the next five years to speed clean energy transitions around the world and build advanced energy industries at home, says TechXplore.

The Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia SIPA released Energizing America: A Roadmap to Launch a National Energy Innovation Mission, a detailed guide for federal policymakers to raise energy innovation as a core national priority.

Co-authored with scholars from the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), Energizing America is the first in a series of volumes to kickstart a U.S. federal clean energy innovation policy agenda.

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Proposed new nuclear plant, Anglesey [image credit: walesonline]


Unless this scheme is revived, the UK government is putting even more pressure on its ridiculous and damaging ‘net zero’ energy policy. The likely gap between future electricity supply and demand seems wider than ever.

H/T Hatter Eggburn
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Plans for a £15-£20bn nuclear power plant in Wales have been scrapped, reports BBC News.

Work on the Wylfa Newydd project on Anglesey was suspended in January last year because of rising costs after Hitachi failed to reach a funding agreement with the UK government.

Isle of Anglesey council said the company had now confirmed in writing it is withdrawing from the project.

Council leader Llinos Medi said: “This is very disappointing, particularly at such a difficult time economically.”

Hitachi shelved the scheme, the biggest energy project ever proposed in Wales, over funding issues.

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Nikola Two truck model


Some critics say Nikola has been cheating by using gravity as a propulsion method when promoting its truck concepts — or they use words to that effect. Of course exaggerated claims are not unheard of in the world of supposedly ‘green’ engineering. The company has tried to defend itself, as the share price yo-yos with each new claim or attempted rebuttal. This is where the climate-crazed world is taking us, or trying to.
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With its electric and hydrogen-fueled trucks, the firm Nikola aims to revolutionize the future of the transportation sector, says Phys.org.

But with one investor claiming the group is running on empty, it has been having a rollercoaster ride on the stock exchange for the past week.

Founded in 2015 by Trevor Milton, the company is mainly working on the development of trucks and pick-ups powered by electric batteries or hydrogen fuel cells, as well as building out hydrogen recharging stations.

Although it has not yet built anything, it has forged strategic partnerships with several renowned industrial groups including the German engineering giant Bosch, the Italians CNH Industrial and, most recently, US car-maker General Motors.

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This scheme trumpeted: “Since July 2018 all of the electricity we supply to our customers is 100% green*. Whichever tariff you take from us all of the electricity we provide is certified as being sourced from UK based wind and solar generators.”
But now comes the real cost – a loss of many millions of pounds incurred by local ratepayers as it all goes pear-shaped. If anyone is surprised, they shouldn’t be.

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The council leader admits selling the customer base will not make back the millions it invested, reports BBC News.

Robin Hood Energy (RHE) is shutting with the loss of 230 jobs despite millions poured into it by Nottingham City Council.

British Gas will take on its customer base of thousands of homes in England.

The council said the sale will not make up all its losses, which leaked documents suggest are £38.1 million.
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As the report below points out: ‘until we see some output figures the claims are still hazy, and until we see some proof, they are of course just claims’.
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California company NDB says its nano-diamond batteries will absolutely upend the energy equation, acting like tiny nuclear generators, reports New Atlas.

They will blow any energy density comparison out of the water, lasting anywhere from a decade to 28,000 years without ever needing a charge.

They will offer higher power density than lithium-ion. They will be nigh-on indestructible and totally safe in an electric car crash.

And in some applications, like electric cars, they stand to be considerably cheaper than current lithium-ion packs despite their huge advantages.

The heart of each cell is a small piece of recycled nuclear waste.

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Cobalt mining in DR Congo [image credit: BBC]


Destroying the planet in a futile attempt to ‘save’ it from supposedly human-caused climate change? Mining is only the start of the problems. After disfiguring the environment all over the place, we arrive at the major issue of costly end-of-life disposal of industrial quantities of batteries, wind turbines and solar panels. Who pays?
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Researchers have warned that mining threats to biodiversity caused by renewable energy production could surpass those averted by climate change mitigation, reports Phys.org.

A University of Queensland study found protected areas, key biodiversity areas and the world’s remaining wilderness would be under growing pressure from mining the minerals required for a clean energy transition.

UQ’s Dr. Laura Sonter said renewable energy production was material-intensive—much more so than fossil fuels—and mining these materials would increase as fossil fuels were phased out.

“Our study shows that mining the materials needed for renewable energy such as lithium, cobalt, copper, nickel and aluminum will create further pressure on the biodiversity located in mineral-rich landscapes,” Dr. Sonter said.

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Customers aren’t going to be impressed if electricity generation becomes as intermittent as the wind, or is limited by the time of day and the weather like solar power. Most want reliable and affordable power, ahead of any theoretical climate obsessions based on misleading computer models.
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New research suggests utilities are dragging their feet when it comes to embracing wind and solar, says BBC News.

Only one in 10 energy suppliers globally has prioritised renewables over fossil fuels, the study finds.

Even those that are spending on greener energy are continuing to invest in carbon heavy coal and natural gas.

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It may not even have been the biggest one in recent centuries, and the Quebec Blackout of 1989 wasn’t far behind in intensity.

Spaceweather.com

Sept. 1, 2020: On Sept. 1st, 1859, the most ferocious solar storm in recorded history engulfed our planet. Named “the Carrington event” after British scientist Richard Carrington, who witnessed the flare that started it, the storm rocked Earth’s magnetic field, sparked auroras over Cuba, the Bahamas and Hawaii, set fire to telegraph stations in North America, and wrote itself into history books as the Biggest. Solar. Storm. Ever.

But sometimes what you read in history books is wrong. Modern researchers looking into the Carrington Event are coming to new and different conclusions.

“The Carrington Event was not unique,” says Hisashi Hayakawa of Japan’s Nagoya University, whose recent study of solar storms has uncovered at least two other events of comparable intensity (in 1872 and 1921). “While the Carrington Event has long been considered a once‐in‐a‐century catastrophe, historical observations warn us that this may be something that occurs much more frequently.”

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The study talks about the need for more ‘grid flexibility’, but as one union leader put it: “The political aspiration is for a low carbon future but politicians have no credible way of delivering it”. Despite the ‘cheaper’ claim, it turns out that ‘the costs of managing the grid skyrocketed to a record high’, which looks ominous given existing energy policies.
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Lockdown measures taken to combat Covid-19 in March led to a much greener and cheaper electricity system in Britain in the weeks that followed, but at the same time the increased reliance on renewables made managing the grid far more challenging, offering a glimpse of the UK’s future power requirements as the economy transitions towards net zero emissions.

That is the conclusion of independent research released today by Imperial College London and energy firm Drax, which saw experts assess the tumultuous impact of the coronavirus crisis on Britain’s electricity system from April to June 2020, a period characterised by near historically low levels of demand for power, says BusinessGreen.

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Reuse, Recycle, Or Just Reduce Solar Panel Waste?

Posted: August 30, 2020 by oldbrew in Critique, Energy
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A preview of ‘the coming panel-demic’.

PA Pundits - International

By Duggan Flanakin ~

Is solar power truly Green?

This question is important, because in today’s world, that which is Green is favored even if it is more expensive and less reliable. We have been taught that solar is Green. But does it pass the Three R’s Test that for 50 years has been the Green standard?

Legend has it that the mantra “reduce, reuse, recycle” entered the collective consciousness somewhere before or after the first national EARTH DAY in 1970. Shortly afterward, President Nixon created the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Congress passed the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.

Logic indicates that a Green product should therefore reusable (with reasonable effectiveness) or recyclable (at reasonable cost). If it is neither, then should we not ask whether we just need to reduce its supply (especially since solar energy is intermittent and still requires backup power)?

The EPA website, for…

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Image credit: BBC Scotland


Nothing to do with the ‘climate emergency’ being a man-made myth, surely? Once again the so-called green economy fails miserably to deliver on its promises, including one of jobs galore.
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Amid the GERS hullabaloo yesterday, there was some other interesting things going on that deserve a bit more attention, says Source News.

First, the STUC, Scotland’s leading trade union body, have written to Alok Sharma MP and Paul Wheelhouse MSP, UK and Scottish Energy Ministers respectively, calling for an urgent bilateral summit to discuss the “renewable construction and green manufacturing jobs crisis”.

Given how little this is getting talked about, you might be surprised to hear that it is a crisis, but it really is.

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Admitting the problem is a start, but not installing the turbines in the first place is obviously the most effective solution. Reducing deaths and injuries would hardly be a triumph.
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Painting one blade of a wind turbine black could cut wind farms’ fatal bird strikes by up to 70%, reports BBC News.

Painting one blade of a wind turbine black could cut bird strikes at wind farms by up to 70%, a study suggests.

Birds colliding with the structures has long been considered to be one of the main negative impacts of onshore wind farms, the authors observed.

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We’ve added the ‘no chance’ to the original headline, but this OilPrice.com article (extract below) confirms it right away. ‘Net zero’ climate obsessives, instead of trying to blame humans for changing the weather, need to stop running away from reality and face some inconvenient facts.
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“The reason renewables can’t power modern civilization is because they were never meant to. One interesting question is why anybody ever thought they could.”

Michael Shellenberger, Time magazine “Hero of the Environment,” wrote this commentary in an article in Forbes.

According to Shellenberger, president at Environmental Progress and an expert reviewer for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), renewables are simply incapable of sustaining our current way of life.

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A self-induced shortage of reliable electricity generation is the real issue in California but its leaders can’t accept that, for mistaken ideological reasons supposedly related to the climate of the Earth. Instead they create their own problems due to unworkable energy policies, then discover they can’t solve them. Other leaders with similar ideas should take note and learn, but probably won’t, preferring to parrot ‘net zero’.

H/T The GWPF
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Problem is there aren’t enough of these massive batteries to go around right now, says Bloomberg Green.

As the threat of blackouts continues to plague California, officials are pointing to battery storage as a key to preventing future power shortfalls.

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What do these sanctimonious blowhards imagine all the journeys to the conference — without which it wouldn’t take place at all — will be powered by? The hypocrisy is epic.
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The UK government will not accept sponsorship from fossil fuel companies for next year’s UN climate summit in Glasgow, Climate Home News understands.

Like in previous years, the UK hosts of the two-week event are seeking corporate sponsors to shoulder some of the cost, initially estimated at £250 million ($330m).

Unlike in previous years, which have seen large polluters use such deals to bolster their green credentials, sponsors of Cop26 are expected to have a credible plan to cut their emissions to net zero by 2050, the official website states.

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UK first or UK farce? Another consequence of the irrational fear of trace gases in the atmosphere.
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Renewable biogas made from cow manure has been injected into the National Grid in a UK first which will create enough energy to power ten homes for a year, reports yahoo! news.

The Murrow Anaerobic Digestion Plant in Cambridgeshire mixed the manure with straw and left it in an oxygen-free environment to produce methane, which has been sold to the grid so people can use it to cook meals and heat their homes.

Biogas is being increasingly looked at by energy companies as it offers far better carbon emissions savings than natural methane gas.

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Green dreamland


Only five ‘grand’ challenges? Better be quick — we keep hearing there’s supposed to be a climate emergency on. Yes, throw out existing successful energy solutions when there’s nothing of equivalence to replace them with. Then wonder what to do next, while muttering about climate change. Great plan! Or maybe not.
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Solar and wind power are an important part of solving the problem of climate change, but these renewable technologies on their own probably will never provide the energy for many industrial processes, like making steel, reports TechXplore.

Approximately 90 percent of the world’s energy use involves generation or manipulation of heat, including the cooling of buildings and food.

Maintaining modern economies and improving life in developing economies while mitigating climate change will require five major advances in how we convert, store and transmit thermal energy, according to a new paper in Nature Energy from Stanford University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

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