Renewable energy

Renewable energy is completely impractical and will never be able to supply the energy demands of the United States, or any other industrialized country.



Renewable energy:

Batteries are fossil fuel, too!
The Hidden Risks of Batteries.  The meteoric rise of lithium-ion batteries in the transport and IT sectors has been spurred by demand for technologies that reduce carbon emissions and decrease energy use.  While this sounds like a win for everyone, there's a darker side that could alter the perceptions of ethically minded consumers and create significant risks for brands.  If you look at the production of cobalt and lithium used in these batteries, a stark picture emerges of an industry exposed to issues such as child labor, modern slavery, and the undermining of land and water rights.  Demand for these raw materials is set to grow significantly.

International Energy Agency report shows that green energy transition is a fantasy because of dependence on key rare minerals.  A prestigious intergovernmental organization created by the world's advanced economies is pointing out the bottleneck in the plans to substitute so-called green energy for hydrocarbon-based energy:  the availability of key minerals necessary for battery storage, wind farms, solar panels, and other gizmos necessary for the switchover.  Simply put:  the world can't provide the quantity of those minerals that would be necessary, and the environmental and social impact of trying to mine them in sufficient quantities would be devastating.  The cure, in other words, is worse than the disease.

Combined hourly generation
Weather Dependent Renewable power performance in Europe DE UK FR: 2020.  In 2020, Weather Dependent Renewables (Wind and Solar Power) made up 58% of all power generation installations in the three Nations, DE UK FR.  Together they contributed about 24% of the power generated at a productivity / capacity percentage of 19.7%.  These three major Nations:  Germany, the United Kingdom and France, (DE UK FR), account for more than half of the Weather Dependent Renewable, energy generation installations across Europe.  These Nations cover an area of about 1.1 million square kilometres about a quarter of the land area of the EU(27).  It extends from 43°N to 58°N and 6°W to 13°E.  The three Nations are predominantly in Northern Europe.


Rural America is fighting back against wind energy projects.  Renewable energy is politically popular.  Polling data show that about 70 percent of Americans want more wind energy and 80 percent want more solar.  Regulators at the local, state, and federal levels have responded to this popularity by passing a myriad of goals, mandates, and subsidies to encourage the development and consumption of wind and solar energy.  The Sierra Club claims that "over 170 cities, more than ten counties, and eight states across the U.S. have goals to power their communities with 100% clean, renewable energy."  In addition to their political popularity, a spate of academic studies released over the past few years have claimed that the U.S. can run most or, all, of its economy solely on renewables.  No oil, coal, natural gas, or nuclear required.  Although renewables are popular among voters and professors at elite universities, they also have several problems, including their intermittency, need for high-voltage transmission lines, and resource intensity.

It Got Serious In A Hurry.  Biden's first executive order, shutting down the Keystone pipeline, set the tone.  In the beautiful illusion that constitutes woke energy policy, renewable but intermittent solar and wind will soon replace fossil fuels, so why do we need fossil fuels and their pipelines (the cheapest and most environmentally friendly way to transport oil and gas).  Everything will be electric — like those cool Teslas! — because electricity just comes from a plug.  Never mind the fossil fuels, minerals and metals that must be extracted or mined (nothing environmentally destructive there) to manufacture and transport solar panels, windmills blades, and batteries.  Never mind the costly environmental challenges of disposing of them.  Never mind the fossil fuels that are burned to provide the electricity for those plugs.  Never mind the back-up power that must be supplied by fossil fuels for those times when the sun doesn't shine and the wind doesn't blow.

After the Texas Blackouts, Follow the $66 Billion of Wind and Solar Money.  In the aftermath of the Texas blackouts, one thing became clear:  Big Wind and Big Solar have nearly every media outlet in the country on speed dial.  Indeed, in the days after the blackouts, numerous media outlets carried stories proclaiming that the near-disastrous failure of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) grid should not be blamed on wind or solar energy.  To cite just one example, The New York Times columnist Paul Krugman declared that pointing the finger at renewables after the storm and blackouts that left nearly 200 people dead was "another indicator of the moral and intellectual collapse of American conservatism."  But the effort to absolve renewables ignores the oldest maxim in politics:  follow the money.  Doing so shows that wind and solar aren't as blameless as you've been told.  Indeed, about $66 billion was spent building wind and solar infrastructure in Texas in the years before the blackouts, yet all that spending was worth next to nothing when the grid was teetering on the edge of collapse during the early morning hours of February 15.

The Ugly Truth About Renewable Power.  When Texas literally froze this February, some blamed the blackouts that left millions of Texans in the dark on the wind turbines.  Others blamed them on the gas-fired power plants.  The truth isn't so politically simple.  In truth, both wind turbines and gas plants froze because of the abnormal weather.  And when Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway said it had plans for additional generation capacity in Texas, it wasn't talking about wind turbines.  It was talking about more gas-fired power plants — ten more gigawatts of them.  While the Texas Freeze hogged headlines in the United States, across the Atlantic, the only European country producing any electricity from solar farms was teeny tiny Slovenia.  And that's not because Europe doesn't have any solar capacity — on the contrary, it has a substantial amount.  But Europe had a brutal winter with lots of snow and clouds.

EU Admits It Can't Go Net-Zero Without Natural Gas.  Last week saw some much-needed good news for natural gas.  The European Union signaled that it would include natural gas in its energy plans for the future, emissions and all.  The not-so-good news is that speaking of emissions, the EU might oblige suppliers to minimize these as much as is possible.

Why Wind and Solar Energy Are Doomed to Failure.  Wind and solar energy are both essentially obsolete technologies.  There is a reason why only the very rich or the very adventurous sail across oceans:  the wind is unreliable, and at best produces relatively little energy.  Nevertheless, liberals have concocted fantasies whereby all of our electricity, or perhaps our entire economy, will be powered by those fickle sources.  There are a number of reasons why this will never happen, but a paper published last week by Center of the American Experiment argues that land use constraints are the most basic reason why wind and solar are inexorably destined to fail.

CA electric power chief says serious problems lie ahead.  The head of the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) recently gave a revealing interview, in an obscure outlet he probably figured would not travel.  It is "Yale Insights" published by the Yale School of Management.  Elliot Mainzer, President and CEO of CAISO is a Yalie, so he gave something back.  Actually he gave a lot out, if you read the poli-speak correctly.  Serious problems lie ahead.

Yes, Overreliance On Wind And Solar Helped Feed Texas's Power Outages.  When the lights went out in Texas earlier this year, corporate media and the left swiftly developed a narrative and stuck to it:  Texas failed because it didn't regulate enough and it wasn't part of the national grid.  This storyline also claimed a lack of electricity from wind and solar had nothing to do with the disaster that claimed almost 60 lives.  Instead, the blackouts were the failure of normally reliable thermal power — natural gas, coal, and nuclear — due to a reluctance to spend billions of dollars to winterize facilities throughout a state more known for persistently hot summers than for transient polar vortices.

Texas: The Lessons and the Not Lessons from the Energy Debacle.  The tragedy in Texas is viewed by many as another glimpse of our uncertain future, and that brings up the question of whether it is possible to be prepared for scenarios we can't even imagine in the new, climate-changing world. [...] The storm wreaked havoc on almost all major power-producing technologies.  A nuclear generator supplying electricity to 1 million homes tripped off-line due to the cold weather impacting a pump system.  Natural gas supplies for heating homes froze up.  And wind turbines froze in place.  The more climate changes, the harder it will be to predict, and outages like the one in Texas are all but guaranteed.

Green investing 'is definitely not going to work'.  From his desk in midtown Manhattan Tariq Fancy once oversaw the beginning of arguably the biggest, most ambitious, effort ever to turn Wall Street "green".  Now, as environmentally friendly investing grows at an exponential rate, Fancy has come to a stark conclusion:  "This is definitely not going to work."  As the former chief investment officer for sustainable investing at BlackRock, the world's largest asset manager, Fancy was charged with embedding environmental, social and governance (ESG) corporate policies across the investment giant's portfolio.

It takes big energy to back up wind and solar.  Power system design can be extremely complex but there is one simple number that is painfully obvious.  At least it is painful to the advocates of wind and solar power, which may be why we never hear about it.  It is a big, bad number.  To my knowledge this big number has no name, but it should.  Let's call it the "minimum backup requirement" for wind and solar, or MBR.  The minimum backup requirement is how much generating capacity a system must have to reliably produce power when wind and solar don't.  For most places the magnitude of MBR is very simple.  It is all of the juice needed on the hottest or coldest low wind night.  It is night so there is no solar.  Sustained wind is less than eight miles per hour, so there is no wind power.  It is very hot or cold so the need for power is very high.  In many places MBR will be close to the maximum power the system ever needs, because heat waves and cold spells are often low wind events.  In heat waves it may be a bit hotter during the day but not that much.  In cold spells it is often coldest at night.

Texas Senate passes bill to counter federal subsidies for wind and solar power.  While President Joe Biden moves to expand the use of renewable energy nationwide, the Texas Legislature is doing the opposite, adding fees on solar and wind electricity production in the state in hopes of boosting fossil fuels.

Renewable-Energy Backers Want 10-Year Tax Credits in Biden Plan.  The clean energy industry is rushing to hitch a ride on President Joe Biden's emerging infrastructure plan, lobbying for a decade-long extension of coveted tax credits as the White House drafts a recovery proposal that could top $3 trillion.  Lobbyists for the industry want to attach the long-term extension of credits used by the wind, solar and other industries, to the plan — a windfall that would be worth billions of dollars if successful.  "The flood gates are open," said Paul Bledsoe, a former Senate Finance Committee staffer now with the Progressive Policy Institute.  "Everyone is trying to get the maximum amount."

The Politicization of Energy Policy Needs to Stop.  Renewables being the solution for rising emissions under current technological constraints are imagined benefits, which simply don't exist.  Energy and climate policies should be based on economic realities and the basics of energy for over 350 million people in the U.S. and a world needing to provide energy and electricity for a growing population.  Energy has to meet five pillars:  abundant, affordable, reliable, scalable, and flexible; otherwise it is a fad like green hydrogen with a current price tag of $11 trillion to implement and needing all current global electrical generation for viability.  The reasons the sun and the wind are a disastrous choice for energy policy is simply this — while they are abundant — they aren't reliable since the sun and wind are intermittent.  Neither are they scalable, affordable, or flexible.  Renewables aren't viable without billions spent yearly on government subsidies and mandates.

California power projections underscore difficulty of Biden climate targets.  California will have to deploy renewable power at record-breaking speed over the next few decades to meet its target for carbon-free electricity by 2045, a transformation that state agencies say in a new report this week is technically achievable but immensely challenging.  The scale of deployment California alone will need to achieve underscores the hurdles facing President Biden and his team as he calls for eliminating carbon from the power sector by 2035, 10 years earlier than California's target.  The effort would require the biggest transformation of the electricity sector since it was built.

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Prepping for a Two Week Power Outage.  If you're new to preparedness, you may be reading some of the excellent and informative websites out there and feeling quite quite overwhelmed.  While many sites recommend a one year supply of food, manual tools, and a bug out lodge in the forest, it's vital to realize that is a long-term goal, not a starting point.  A great starting point for someone who is just getting started on a preparedness journey is prepping specifically for a two-week power outage.  If you can comfortably survive for two weeks without electricity, you will be in a far better position than most of the people in North America.

Germany Considers Electricity Rationing to Stabilize its Shaky Green Grid.  Before the days of climate alarmism and hysteria, the job of deciding how to best produce electricity was left to power generation engineers and experts — people who actually understood it.  The result:  Germany had one of the most stable and reliable power grids worldwide.  Then in the 1990s, environmental activists, politicians, climate alarmists and pseudo-experts decided they could do a better job at generating power in Germany and eventually passed the outlandish EEG green energy feed-in act and rules.  They insisted that wildly fluctuating, intermittent power supplies could be managed easily, and done so at a low cost.  Fast forward to today:  The result of all the government meddling is becoming glaringly clear:  the country now finds itself on the verge of blackouts due to grid instability, has the highest electricity prices in the world, relies more on imports and is not even close to meeting its emissions targets.  Germany's rickety and moody power grid now threatens the entire European power grid stability, as we recently witnessed.

A Reality Check on Green Energy
  [#1]   All "renewable" energy is actually "replaceable" energy, analyst Nate Hagens points out.  Every 15-25 years (or less) much or all of the alt-energy systems and structures have to be replaced, and little of the necessary mining, manufacturing and transport can be performed with the "renewable" electricity these sources generate.  Virtually all the heavy lifting of these processes require hydrocarbons and especially oil.
  [#2]   Wind and solar "renewable" energy is intermittent and therefore requires changes in behavior (no clothes dryers or electric ovens used after dark, etc.) or battery storage on a scale that isn't practical in terms of the materials required.
  [#3]   Batteries are also "replaceable" and don't last very long.  The percentage of lithium-ion batteries being recycled globally is near-zero, so all batteries end up as costly, toxic landfill.
  [#4]   Battery technologies are limited by the physics of energy storage and materials.  Moving whiz-bang exotic technologies from the lab to global scales of production is non-trivial.
  [#5]   The material and energy resources required to build alt-energy sources that replace hydrocarbon energy and replace all the alt-energy which has broken down or reached the end of its life exceeds the affordable reserves of materials and energy available on the planet.
  [#6]   Externalized costs of alt-energy are not being included in the cost.  Nobody's adding the immense cost of the environmental damage caused by lithium mines to the price of the lithium batteries.
  [#7]   None of the so-called "green" "replaceable" energy has actually replaced hydrocarbons; all the alt-energy has done is increase total energy consumption.

Climate and COVID: The Erosion of Common Intelligence and Common Sense.  The notorious Texas freeze, to take a recent instance, should have provided abundant evidence that wind and solar are not only weather-dependent and inadequate suppliers of electric power but potentially disastrous; yet many continue to believe that the answer to such emergencies is even more green technology.  Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, for example, who introduced the Green New Deal in Congress, claims that the infrastructure failures in Texas "are quite literally what happens when you don't pursue a Green New Deal."  The degree of stupefaction here is legendary.  Renewables are not only ill-suited for, but wholly contra-indicated to serving as primary energy sources for industrial societies.

Renewables and Reliability.  Without reliable electricity, modern life doesn't exist.  This is why the move to an all-electric society is such a bad idea.  Most leaders in the West do not understand this reality.  It's why over 3 billion still live in squalid poverty while the West successfully fights COVID-19 with products derived from crude oil.  Grids cannot function without energy sources that are abundant, reliable, scalable, affordable, and flexible.  Currently, only coal, natural gas, oil, petroleum, and nuclear energy meet this criteria.  Even natural gas has limitations compared to coal, because natural gas-fired power plants "depend on just-in-time fuel deliveries," which aren't reliable in extreme weather.  Whether in German winters, California summers, or Texas polar vortex storms, electrical grids are fragile and need proper management or blackouts will happen.  Trillions are needed to upgrade and build new grids in the U.S. and globally if renewables continuing being deployed for electrical generation.

The Myths Of Green Energy.  Finance is often cloaked in arcane terminology and math, but the one dynamic that governs the future is actually very simple.  Here it is:  [Video clip]

How Politics is Making Power Failures the Norm.  As designed, historically the U.S. power grid has proven remarkably resilient.  Sadly, as political considerations have increasingly trumped basic physics and engineering, electrical power failures have become more common in the past couple of decades in the United States.  The decline in the reliability of the electric power system has coincided with the increasing incorporation of intermittent wind and solar power into electric power networks.  The increase in wind and solar power was not driven by market forces.  Instead, it is the result of politicians forcing and incentivizing ever greater amounts onto the power grid.  In a single generation, politicians have undermined the integrity of the U.S. electrical grid. [...] A power system that depends on the weather cooperating is a bad idea.  Yet, over the past two decades wind and solar power have accounted for an ever-increasing portion of electric power capacity in in the United States.  And it's all due to politics.

Why The Texas Blackout Has The Greens So Scared:  Deflecting blame to a more exciting apocalypse.  Last month, President Biden signed a series of executive orders undermining fossil fuels, on the grounds the "climate crisis" forced his hand.  "We can't wait any longer.  We see with our own eyes.  We know it in our bones.  It is time to act."  Within days, most of the country was seeing "with our own eyes" and feeling "in our bones" a cold wave so severe that five million people lost electricity and, in a special irony, nearly half of the ballyhooed wind turbines in Texas, which had risen to supply 23% of her energy, were left frozen (and inoperable).  This constituted a double whammy to the huge global warming establishment.  First was the cold, when the "science" had confidently predicted a steadily warming Texas.  Second was the failure of renewables, vastly exacerbating the problems for the energy grid. [...] For the global warming establishment, the disastrous performance of renewables was more upsetting than the cold spell itself.

Renewables Sector Reels As 150,000 German 'Green' Jobs Evaporate.  The great 'green' jobs 'bonanza' is being revealed for the hoax that it truly is.  And nowhere is that reality harsher, than in Mutti Merkel's Germany.  Plastered in solar panels (albeit blanketed in snow and ice at the moment) and overrun with 30,000 of these things, Deutschland has been held up as a renewable energy 'superpower' by the wind and solar cult, across the globe.  A bitter, breathless winter has left them scrambling for the only reliable power source in town:  coal-fired power from their own remaining plants and from Poland, and nuclear power from France.  One of the promises of its 'transition' to an all wind and sun powered future — aka the 'Energiewende' — was an endless sea of 'groovy' sustainable employment in the manufacture of solar panels and wind turbines.

Understanding the Texas Energy Crisis.  Outsiders may not be aware that Texas has a uniquely independent power grid that is relatively disconnected from regional energy consumers and providers.  Outsiders may also be surprised to discover the dramatic growth of wind power in a state that has among the largest fossil fuel reserves in the world.  The growth of wind power to be second as a source only to natural gas is the debate raging in Texas politics now.  Did wind reliance help set up the energy crisis in an energy rich state?  At a moderate level of study, it is apparent that both wind and natural gas was blocked from full utilization by extended severely sub-freezing weather. [...] Has the decade-long move to invest in wind power that placed so many turbines and transmission lines in West Texas proven to be a wise investment for ERCOT and energy providers?  The answer is probably 'no.' [...] More profound — was the switch from coal to natural gas completely wise?

Two-month weather forecast
Fantastical Energy.  [Scroll down]  As the catastrophic results in Texas this week show us, weather modeling is as iffy as using your online astrologer to plan your investments.  (It was supposed to be sunny and mild.  [See illustration, left.])  Such forecasts are too unreliable to count on ever, but particularly when the weather is harsh and your need for reliable energy is greatest.  In the real world, we have the choice of spending more money to harden conventional energy production and transmission or living with unreliable energy. [...] The details of the Texas outage are explained at Powerline blog.  On the reliability grading scale, natural gas scored highest even though some natural gas pipelines froze.  Monday through Thursday natural gas provided over 65 percent of all electricity generation.  What didn't work?  "Green" energy:  solar, wind and hydro.  Solar was irrelevant to energy production in the storm, wind was virtually irrelevant as well.  Indeed, it came out worst on the reliability scale, there was little wind in this cold blast and, worse, when it gets really cold "they draw power off the grid to heat their motors... they become consumers, not producers of energy."


Some Interesting Aspects of the Once-in-a-Century Texas Deep Freeze and the Problems of the Electricity Grid.  Fossil fuel and nuclear power generation plants all boil water to create steam and the pressurized steam spins turbines that generate electricity.  They all have piping mechanisms to move water — and natural gas in plants that burn natural gas to boil water.  The historic low temperatures caused the water to freeze in the pipelines — no water => no steam => turbines quit spinning.  There is always water vapor present in natural gas flowing through a pipeline.  When that temperature inside the pipe drops below freezing, the water vapor will begin to form ice on the inside of the pipeline, and this ice will continue to build up until the pipeline becomes choked or blocked completely, cutting off the flow of gas to boil the water that spins the steam turbines.  But the same issue arises with regard to preventative measures dealing with the pipelines as with the wind turbines — what is the cost-benefit analysis of incurring the expense to prevent failure in the system from the occurrence of an event that had never occurred before?

An Insider Explains Why Texans Lost Their Power.  [Scroll down]  If this sounds outlandish, here's the head of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas:  ["]The fundamental decision made in the middle of the night on Monday to have outages imposed was a wise decision by the operators we have here, Magness said.  If we had waited and not done those outages ... we could have drifted to blackout.  That's not just outages, but we could lose all electricity on system, and it could take months or longer to repair that.["]  With a total ERCOT system failure, as many as 12 million customers and possibly 20 million Texans could be in the cold, in the dark, in their cars with nowhere to go — for months.  Wind power did this to Texas.  Be very afraid of the Green New Deal.

Wind Energy Fails: Grading the Reliability of Energy Sources During the Texas Power Outages.  Here were the major factors contributing to the energy crisis:
  •   Because Texas doesn't "winterize" its electricity infrastructure, around 45 gigawatts (GW) of generating capacity became inoperable the morning of February 15, 2021, due to extreme weather.  Included in this capacity was:
      ○   30 GW of fuel-based energy sources (mainly natural gas) that became unable to produce electricity due to frozen natural gas pipelines and safety mechanisms that shut down nuclear and coal facilities to protect against extreme cold temperature.  This is nearly 30 percent of all nuclear, coal, and natural gas capacity on the Texas grid.
      ○   15 GW of wind energy that could not generate electricity due to wind turbines freezing.  This is roughly 50 percent of all wind and solar capacity on the Texas grid.
  •   Because neighboring states and Mexico were also experiencing energy emergencies of their own, in addition to the independent and isolated nature of the electrical grid in Texas, electricity imports were largely out of the question to mitigate the significant loss of generating capacity.  Renewable energy advocates were quick to come to the defense of wind and solar energy sources, while others were quick to blame them for the energy emergency that unfolded in the Lone Star State.  With so many competing narratives floating around, it's helpful to see the data.

Texas's Power Grid Disaster Is Only The Beginning.  Conservatives have been eager to blame Texas's problems on increased use of wind power.  It certainly played a role.  Turbines froze in the cold and the focus on expanding renewable energy sources over conventional gas and oil left the state less able to expand energy production in response to a surge.  But solar energy is far from the only culprit.  Another factor was simply that Texas infrastructure could not handle an outlier weather event.

Texas power outage is a warning about 'green energy' reliance and globalist control.  The current winter storm in Texas, which has left millions without power, heat, and food, has led to questions about the reliability of so called "green energy" and serves as an example of the danger posed by the green agenda in pursuit of the Great Reset.  The storm brought temperatures dipping well below zero degrees Fahrenheit and has left millions of people without power.  Over 20 people have died in various states affected by the storm.  The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), which manages around 90% of Texas's electrical capacity, initially asked residents to "reduce their electricity use," as the system was suffering from "higher-than-normal generation outages due to frozen wind turbines and limited natural gas supplies available to generating units."

As Germans freeze, leading newspaper calls green energy strategy 'a dangerous miscalculation'.  Little attention is paid to the question of just how much "climate change" is a result of human activity, i.e., CO2 emissions into the atmosphere resulting from the burning of fossil fuels.  Does anyone have a handle on this? [...] The degree of warming in the tropical troposphere resulting from an increase of CO2 is the central premise behind the climate change hoopla.  The fact that such warming is not occurring to the degree predicted by the climate models is not an 'isolated fact,' it is a very strong indication that there is a real disconnect between theory and reality.  The linchpin is weak or missing.  Whatever observed changes are taking place, they are probably not primarily the result of CO2 "pollution."  What's also missing is any great awareness of this by the general population.  Try asking friends or acquaintances what their understanding is of the connection between human activity and "climate change."  A blank stare is often the result.  As far as our climate crisis leadership elites are concerned, I have little idea how many are merely ignorant, or lying, or both.  Whatever the case may be, it's misdirection on steroids.  90% politics, 10% science.

The irony of Texas's massive power outrages during winter weather.  A ferocious winter storm struck the southern plain states with exceptional ferocity over the weekend.  By Monday [2/15/2021], millions of Texans found themselves without power.  Contrary to what one might expect, the energy problem wasn't primarily because of downed power lines.  Instead, in a state that has a quarter of America's proven natural gas reserves, the power went away because Texas has turned to wind generation — and the generators froze. [...] Germany is currently having a similar problem because its winter storms have not only frozen their turbines, but they've also blocked sunlight from reaching the solar panels that generate necessary energy since Germany made the decision to "go green".

Toward a Renewable Chaos:  Carbon Imperialism and Disadvantaged Smaller Nations.  [W]ind and solar make up an insignificant percentage of the world's energy consumption.  The renewable contribution to global energy consumption in 2017 was less than 2%.  Solar and wind contributed just 7% of the world's electricity in 2018.  There is a reason for that.  Besides being expensive, they are highly intermittent and so are unreliable.  Further, wind and solar power cannot be used without backup by fossil fuel-powered energy sources.  Even in Germany, increased reliance on wind and solar has resulted in energy chaos.  Berlin is facing energy shortages as both wind and solar have failed during the ongoing winter, and coal plants are running at full capacity to meet the demand.  "With this supply of wind and photovoltaic energy, it's between 0 and 2 or 3 percent — that is de facto zero.  You can see it in many diagrams that we have days, weeks, in the year where we have neither wind nor PV.  Especially this time (winter) for example — there is no wind and PV, and there are often times when the wind is very miniscule.  These are things, I must say, that have been physically established and known for centuries, and we've simply totally neglected this during the green energies discussion," said Dr. Harald Schwarz, professor of power distribution at the University of Cottbus.

The Dark Side of Clean Energy.  When Donald Trump offered to buy Greenland from Denmark in 2019 it was dismissed as illegal and absurd.  However, the president's expression of interest was far from absurd, says Guillaume Pitron.  Under its soil Greenland boasts one of the largest concentrations of the rare metals that the world will need to power electric cars, computers, mobile phones, robots, solar power plants, artificial intelligence and many high-tech "green" innovations that have not been dreamt up yet.  If Trump were after those minerals, buying Greenland would have been a smart move.  The global production and sales of rare metals are dominated by China.  It mines so much of them on home soil and controls so much of their extraction in Africa and elsewhere that it oversees up to 95 percent of the global production of certain minerals.  This puts Beijing in charge of "the oil of the 21st century", writes Pitron, which is a problem for western nations because it means China can restrict supply and drive prices up or down at will, as Opec does with oil.  We have "entrusted a precious monopoly of mineral sovereignty to potential rivals", he notes.

New York Cannot Buy Its Way Out of Coming Blackouts.  New York City will soon be home to the world's biggest industrial-scale battery system.  It's designed to back up the city's growing reliance on intermittent "renewable" electricity.  At 400 megawatt-hours (MWh), this cluster of batteries will be more than triple the 129 MWh world leader in Australia.  Mark Chambers, NYC's Director of Sustainability (I am not making this title up), is ecstatic.  "Expanding battery storage is a critical part of how we advance momentum to confront the climate emergency," he brags, "while meeting the energy needs of all New Yorkers.  Today's announcement demonstrates how we can deliver this need at significant scale."  In the same nonsensical way, Tim Cawley, president of Con Edison, New York state's power utility, gushes thus:"Utility-scale battery storage will play a vital role in New York's clean energy future, especially in New York City, where it will help to maximize the benefit of the wind power being developed off shore."

This green fantasy will bankrupt us.  It's 2050.  You wake in your cosy, insulated house, turn on the windfarm-powered lights, cook up a breakfast coffee on the hydrogen stove before jumping into your electric car.  You whizz silently along roads with air as fresh as a mountain stream past happy e-bikers and carbon-neutral schools to your heat-pump powered office.  So, viewed from Britain in 2020, can you spot the odd one out?  Here's a clue:  the e-bikers get no subsidy.  Everything else on this list loses money, and needs state support on a massive scale to get even halfway to the nirvana glimpsed by the prime minister this week.  Today's subsidy, of course, is tomorrow's tax rise.

he Green Grift, or Gangrene Energy?  The renewable energy fanatics like to point out that the cost of solar power has been falling dramatically over the past decade, the result of technological and manufacturing improvements.  This is true, but raises the question: why does the solar industry continue to demand subsidies then? [...] It turns out that prior subsidy contracts yielded nearly 20 percent profit margins for solar power producers, which the French government thinks is "excessive" since the return on investment for conventional energy investments is closer to 5 percent.  One thing this makes clear is that solar power "investment" requires big subsidies to attract capital.  Without the guaranteed subsidies, green energy turns into gangrene energy in a hurry.

Study: Renewable Energy does Nothing to Reduce CO2 Emissions.  A group of high profile scientists, including Dr. Willie Soon, have published a meticulously referenced study which discuses the pros and cons of various CO2 reduction strategies.

Study Confirms Donald Trump Is Right — 'Clean' Energy Is the Worst.  Renewable energy is cripplingly expensive, hopelessly unreliable, massacres wildlife, destroys landscapes, destabilises the grid, harms indigenous peoples, and causes climate change.  But apart from that it's great, says a meticulous review published in the scientific journal Energies by a team of Irish and U.S.-based researchers.  Actually, the part about renewable energy being 'great' is a joke but the rest is true.  The scholarly review — Energy and Climate Policy — An Evaluation of Climate Change Expenditure 2011-2018 — is probably the most thorough meta-analysis published on the so-called 'clean energy' sector.

The Green Road to Blackouts.  California leads the way to electricity blackouts, closely followed by South Australia.  They both created this problem by taxing, banning, delaying or demolishing reliable coal, nuclear, gas or hydro generators while subsidising and promoting unreliable electricity from the sickly green twins — solar and wind.  All supposed to solve a global warming crisis that exists only in academic computer models.  Energy policy should be driven by proven reliability, efficiency and cost, not by green politics.  Wind and solar will always be prone to blackouts for three reasons. [...]

The Plague of Renewable Portfolio Standards.  Wind and solar are feasible only because the operators of the grid agree to do everything possible to accept whatever amount of wind or solar is coming their way at any time.  They assume this posture toward wind and solar because that is required by various regulations and contracts.  All the other sources of power are ordered to decrease or increase output as needed to balance the amount of wind or solar power flowing at any moment.  If wind and solar are minor players, the burden of accommodating their erratic nature is small.  If they become big players, the burden starts to be a serious problem.  In some places, like California, it's starting to get serious.

Green energy push blamed in California's rolling blackouts.  California's electricity grid picked an inconvenient moment to stumble, at least for Democrats seeking to drum up support this week for Joseph R. Biden's $2 trillion green-energy plan at the Democratic National Convention.  The Golden State's ambitious renewable portfolio standard is coming under fire as the state's energy grid buckles under the strain of an oppressive heatwave, prompting rolling blackouts that have left millions without power as the state moves to replace nuclear and natural gas as energy sources with solar and wind.  California seeks to generate 60% of electricity via renewables by 2030, but Mr. Biden's Green New Deal is even more aggressive, calling for a 100% carbon-free grid by 2035 "to meet the existential threat of climate change while creating millions of jobs with a choice to join a union."

The excess costs of Weather Dependent Renewable power generation in the USA.  These estimates show that using Weather Dependent Renewables in the USA costs [about] 6 times as much as using Natural Gas for electricity generation and about 1.2 [to] 2 times as much as Nuclear power.  The benefit of these expenditures for Weather Dependent Renewables is the replacement of about 9% of USA power gross output capacity by "nominally" CO2 neutral technologies.  Electrical power generation results in about 1/4 of the total CO2 emissions output from USA.

Why Subsidised Wind & Solar Are Sending South Africa's Power Prices Into Orbit.  Rocketing power prices and grid instability are two inescapable consequences of subsidised wind and solar.  While sunshine and breezes might be free, attempting to run your power system using nature's gifts, brings with it a raft of other costs which RE zealots tend to gloss over.  The electricity generation and distribution system — which wind and solar power are meant to completely replace — is one that was designed to work all on its lonesome; no mythical mega-batteries; no load shedding when the wind drops or the sun sets; no prayers to the wind gods; no fuss; and no failures that can't be fixed in an engineering jiffy.  The same can't be said of the unreliables, which always and everywhere depend upon the system as it was — one built on ever-reliable coal, gas, nuclear and hydro (where it's available).  But STT is referring to a system that works, always has and always will.  On the other hand, those seeking to profit from the wind and solar scam claim keep talking about a new 'system'; when, in reality, all they've got to offer is chaos.  And chaos costs.

Why "Green" Energy Is Impossible.  High on the Left's agenda is mandating 100% "green" generation of electricity — if not 100% of energy, period.  I believe Joe Biden, among others, has now come out for 100% "green" energy, meaning wind and solar.  But for now, let's stick with energy generation.  Would it be feasible to get 100% of our electricity from wind and solar?  Basic problems with these energy sources include inefficiency and intermittency.  Wind turbines produce energy around 40% of the time, and solar panels do much worse than that in many parts of the country.  So how does a utility ensure that the lights will go on, even at night when the wind isn't blowing?  The liberals' favorite answer is "batteries."  Produce electricity when the wind is blowing and the sun is shining, and store the energy in batteries for use when electricity is not being generated.  Batteries exist, of course; we use them all the time.  But where is the battery that can store the entire output of a power plant or a wind farm?  That battery does not exist.  Further, battery storage is ruinously expensive.

Climate science is not settled anymore than pandemic science is.  Climate activists are so sure they're right but are still afraid of scrutiny, and of being judged on trust cost impacts, according to Sky News host Peta Credlin.  "For years people like me have been saying that climate science is not settled as activists like to say, anymore than pandemic science is settled".  "All of us want to do the right thing by the environment, but there's just no way we should be damaging our economy in an endless quest to reduce emissions," Ms Credlin said.

£3 Billion-a-Year Cost to Prevent Green Energy Blackouts.  An in-depth study for the Global Warming Policy Foundation has revealed the skyrocketing costs of balancing the national grid, largely due to the intermittency of green power generation sources, most notably wind and solar.  Since 2002, when these power sources began to be introduced at scale, the cost of balancing the grid has risen from £367 million to £1.5 billion per year by 2019.  And now with the lockdown shrinking demand, balancing costs are optimistically projected to be £2 billion, potentially rising to £3 billion if the lockdown persists.

Renewable power fails in Germany.  Germany is even farther down the alternative energy road to oblivion than the U.S., and the Germans are running up against multiple insurmountable roadblocks.  Exorbitant tax subsidies haven't helped, except to drain taxpayers' pocketbooks and enrich industries that otherwise wouldn't be profitable enough to exist.  With hubris typical of tax-and-spend fanatics, Germans decided last year to shut down their entirely reliable, less-costly-to-operate 84 coal-ower plants in addition to closing all their nuclear-power plants.  Now the Germans are discovering what should have been obvious before they shot themselves in the foot: the alternatives of wind and solar power tremendously costly and will remain completely unreliable to provide energy 24/7 365 days a year at any price.

Green Electricity Delusions.  With global warming the alleged science is so complicated that nobody, including the global warming scientists, can really understand what is going on.  Green electricity, mostly solar and wind, is different.  It's relatively clear cut.  No supercomputers spewing out terabytes of confusing data are needed.  Green electricity is quite useless.  The latest trend in green electricity is wind or solar with battery backup.  This green electricity costs about nine times more than the fossil fuel electricity it displaces.  The true cost is hidden from the public by hidden subsidies and fake accounting.

Wind and solar add zero value to the grid.  Why is wind power and solar power, not making significant gains in providing a substantial amount of renewable electricity?  The US has utilized, in its energy mix, about eight percent of wind and two percent solar for more than a decade.  The reason it is not growing requires an understanding of the fundamental elements, of an electrical grid.  The grid is the electrical industry's term for all of the hardware and software needed to convert fuel into electricity.  The electricity is distributed by wires, transformers, sub-stations, etc. to all of us.  The system must ensure our safety from malfunctions, security to customers, and safety for the community.

Is today's wind and solar technology the solution to our energy problems?  Today, close to 8 billion people live on Earth, and 80% of the world's hunger for power is fed with hydrocarbons or 'fossil fuels'.  Wind and solar made up an estimated 2% of primary energy in 2018, with the 'non-fossil' remainder largely coming from nuclear, hydro and biomass.  Only 100 years ago the global population was 2 billion.  Of today's 8 billion people, there are at least 3 billion with no or only erratic access to power.  In addition, another 3 billion people are expected to be added during the next 50 years.  That adds up to 6 billion new power customers.  Not only will the population increase, but as humans continue to crave new gadgets, planes, cars and space travel, the average power consumption per capita will increase dramatically, and with it, the e-waste generated.

Abandoning the concept of renewable energy.  Renewable energy is a widely used term that describes certain types of energy production.  In politics, business and academia, renewable energy is often framed as the key solution to the global climate challenge.  We, however, argue that the concept of renewable energy is problematic and should be abandoned in favor of more unambiguous conceptualization.Building on the theoretical literature on framing and based on document analysis, case examples and statistical data, we discuss how renewable energy is framed and has come to be a central energy policy concept and analyze how its use has affected the way energy policy is debated and conducted.  We demonstrate the key problems the concept of renewable energy has in terms of sustainability, incoherence, policy impacts, bait-and-switch tactics and generally misleading nature.

Why eco-leftists are suddenly turning on Michael Moore.  [Scroll down]  Director Moore's latest documentary starts with electric cars, the vehicle of choice for the environmentally conscious.  As GM proudly unveils its battery-powered Volt, his narrator innocently asks the executive in charge where the electricity to recharge it comes from.  Power plants, comes the answer.  Coal-burning power plants.  Memo from Moore to those who think they are driving green:  You may indulge your illusions if you prefer.  But all you've really done is transfer your emissions from the tailpipe of your car to the smokestack of the local power plant.  Maybe you think solar power is the answer?  Moore treats you to a visit to a showy solar array that covers an entire football field.  The power-company executive present admits that it can only power ten homes, and then only when the sun shines.

COVID-19 and Reliable Energy.  Those holding degrees from elite universities now seem useless compared to farmworkers, truck drivers, and warehouse stock clerks.  These same university-educated folk believe renewable energy (sun and wind) can deliver "critical medical equipment, ultrasound systems, ventilators, CT systems, X-ray machines, personal protection equipment, masks, (and) gloves."  Each of these medical commodities are examples of the over 6,000 products that start from a barrel of crude oil.  The plastic in plastic gloves is overwhelmingly made from crude oil.  Under current technology, and a world turned upside down by this virus, the United States, European Union (EU), and remaining United Nations signatories are not replacing or banishing fossil fuels and the medical products derived from them with renewables.  Zero-carbon societies will ravage lives, leading to death, and wholeheartedly believing in global warming/climate change without thorough questioning of this ideology renders the global, green-aligned environmental movement impotent and feckless in the face of global pandemics.

Why Dems are so bent on passing wind amid corona crisis.  Renewables live or die by subsidies, in fact.  That was proved yet again this week, when Democrats tried (unsuccessfully) to stuff a panoply of Green New Deal measures into the corona-crisis relief bill — including extensions of the tax credits that have been driving the growth of solar and wind energy.  That Congressional Democrats would push so hard for solar and wind subsidies at such a critical time for the US economy is particularly galling for two reasons.  First, the wind industry already stands to collect some $33.75 billion in subsidies between now and 2029.  Second, wind-energy development in some of the most-heavily Democratic states in the country — Hawaii, California, New York and Vermont — has been effectively stopped due to local opposition.  To be sure, the Washington favor factory never sleeps.  But the American Wind Energy Association and its lobbyists deserve an Olympic gold medal for their utter lack of shame.

The Collapse of Intellectual Standards in Science.  The renewable energy industry has powerful sources of support for its program to make money by fooling the public.  There are many effective lies, repeated over and over.  Long term contracts for wind or solar electricity at $25 or $30 per megawatt hour are touted as proving that renewable electricity is replacing "more expensive" fossil fuel electricity.  A close examination of the cost of renewable electricity, either wind or solar, shows that the real cost of this electricity is not $25 per megawatt hour, but around $80 per megawatt hour.  The difference is the federal and state subsidies.  A good chunk of those federal subsidies are set to go away by 2022.  Then there is the matter of replacing fossil fuel electricity.  Wind or solar electricity displaces some fossil fuel electricity, but they never replace the plants used to generate fossil fuel electricity.  The fossil fuel plants are throttled back when the wind or solar is generating electricity.  But sometimes wind and solar are asleep.  At those times the fossil fuel plants have to power the grid without any help from the wind or solar plants.  Nothing is replaced by building wind or solar plants.  A dual system is created with dependable fossil fuel plants supplemented by erratically operating wind or solar plants.

Renewable Power Theatre of the Absurd.  Along with many other states, California, Arizona and Nevada all have "renewable portfolio laws."  California requires that 60% of its electric power be from renewable sources by 2030.  Nevada requires 50% by 2030.  Arizona requires 15% by 2025.  Renewable power is defined by law in each state, but usually it amounts to wind or solar.  One might think that having a quota for renewable power means that the power has to be generated by wind or solar and consumed within the state.  There is a loophole.  The "renewable attribute" can be legally separated from the actual power.  So, the power can be consumed in one place, but a different place gets credit as if it had actually consumed the renewable power.  For example, a wind farm in Colorado can generate a megawatt hour of electricity.  The power is actually sold and consumed in Colorado, but California gets credit for a megawatt hour of renewable power.  The Colorado wind farm in the normal course of events can sell the abstract credit, known as an RPC or Renewable Power Certificate to California.  California needs credits to meet it renewable power quota, so it is willing to pay, for what is a piece of paper.

Renewable Energy Fairy Tales.  [Scroll down]  The technical bottom line is that when the wind or solar starts being a bigger part of the grid, say 15% for solar and somewhat higher for wind, you run into difficulties.  Solar and wind surge.  For example, midday solar may be 5 times as large as the average solar energy.  For wind the surge may be 3 times larger than the average wind energy.  If the surge production exceeds some threshold it has to be curtailed for grid stability reasons.  The bottom line is that to achieve 50% renewable electricity, electricity storage has to be added to the system to smooth out the surges.  The only remotely practically technologies for storage are pumped storage, a closed loop hydroelectric system, or batteries.  These are very expensive, and you end up with renewable electricity costing $200 per megawatt hour compared to running existing natural gas plants for $20 per megawatt hour.  It's ridiculous and pointless.  Wind and solar, by the way, are extremely expensive methods of reducing CO2 emissions compared to the alternatives.

The Editor says...
The whole purpose of renewable energy is the avoidance of carbon dioxide emissions.  But carbon dioxide is not a pollutant.  It is plant food.

Germany's overdose of renewable energy.  Germany now generates over 35% of its yearly electricity consumption from wind and solar sources.  Over 30 000 wind turbines have been built, with a total installed capacity of nearly 60 GW.  Germany now has approximately 1.7 million solar power (photovoltaic) installations, with an installed capacity of 46 GW.  This looks very impressive.  Unfortunately, most of the time the actual amount of electricity produced is only a fraction of the installed capacity.  Worse, on "bad days" it can fall to nearly zero.  In 2016 for example there were 52 nights with essentially no wind blowing in the country.  No Sun, no wind.  Even taking "better days" into account, the average electricity output of wind and solar energy installations in Germany amounts to only about 17% of the installed capacity.

Intermittent & Unreliable Wind & Solar The Greatest Subsidy Scam In History.  The so-called wind and solar 'industries' were built on lies, myths and propaganda and run on subsidies.  As wind power 'investor' Warren Buffett put it:  "We get a tax credit if we build a lot of wind farms.  That's the only reason to build them.  They don't make sense without the tax credit."  Buffett might have continued, that it's the only reason anyone invests in them.  As to the lies, myths and propaganda, the spate of bushfires that have swept Queensland, NSW, Victoria and South Australian this summer have energized doomsday climate cultists who — without a shred of scientific evidence — pronounce, with godlike certitude, that those fires were all caused by Australia's failure to rein in its carbon dioxide gas emissions.  Ergo, those fires could have been wholly prevented had we only carpeted every inch of the Australian countryside with windmills and every rooftop with solar panels.  It's a sad indictment of Australia's journalistic tradition that the mainstream press not only repeats this nonsense ad nauseam, but magnifies it by berating any politician with the temerity to stick to the facts.

Progressive Eco-Group Admits It:  Renewable Energy is a Hoax that Benefits its Greenie Elmer Gantries like Al Gore.  Independent physicist John Droz, Jr. alerted me to the website of Deep Green Resistance (DGR), an international environmental organization that calls for the total destruction of what it refers to as the "global industrial economy," a.k.a. capitalism.  Given the group's hard-left credentials, its call for dismantling capitalism throughout the world is not surprising.  What is surprising is that in an unusual show of progressive candor, Deep Green Resistance openly acknowledges what skeptical scientists have been saying for more than two decades: that renewable energy is a government-backed hoax that enriches big corporations — and green energy investors like Al Gore — at the expense of taxpayers and the environment.

10 questions to ask your climate alarmist friends.  [#9] How big would a battery have to be to power New York City for one hour?  Wind and solar produce power intermittently — the wind doesn't always blow and the sun doesn't always shine.  Many renewable advocates point out that in order to have stable power supplied around the clock, we would simply need to store excess energy in batteries so that the power could be used later when demand is higher.  This is correct in theory, but battery technology currently lags far behind what is needed.  For example, in order to power New York City for just one hour, the entire world's battery storage capacity would be completely drained.

Green Energy Studies:  Consulting, or Advertising?  Wind and solar aren't remotely competitive with traditional fossil fuels and cannot replace them.  They would scarcely exist if it weren't for massive federal subsidies, and state laws establishing quotas for renewable energy.  Neither are good at reducing carbon dioxide emissions (CO2).  I wrote a book about wind and solar called Dumb Energy and found them to be mainly political creations.  They are a complete waste of money kept alive by political action.  Most of the things you have heard from the wind and solar propaganda machine is wrong.  But they have their champions. [...] Deloitte publishes academic-style papers touting the virtues of renewable energy.  Lazard published a widely quoted study purporting to show the unsubsidized cost of wind and solar energy.  These studies pretend to be objective but are actually promotional material for their renewable energy clients.

Claim: The Green Energy Lithium Rush is Destabilising South America.  Renewables are not exactly covering themselves in glory on the geopolitical stage.  Cobalt, a vital component of high capacity batteries, is extracted by teams of children working in dangerous mines operated by brutal Congolese warlords.  Chinese peasants suffering toxic pollution released by their hideous rare earth mine (rare Earths are used to produce high strength magnets, vital for efficient wind turbines).  Now we can add corruption and political instability in South America to the cost of renewables.

Renewables May Make Us Feel Good, But Realistically They Just Don't Work.  Despite the hype over the ever-increasing connected capacity at wind and solar farms worldwide, none, yes, let me repeat that, none have replaced any of the hydro, natural gas, coal, or nuclear generating plants that are providing continuous and uninterruptable electricity to people and businesses around the world.  Solar may work occasionally at homes and businesses as a source for supplemental intermittent electricity to lower daily demand from the grid, but they're still connected to a reliable source for continuously and uninterruptable power.  We all know, if the sun is not shinning, their only source of electricity are the power generating plants feeding the grid even with the burgeoning mass storage technology popping up in the most auspicious places.  It's not that we're not trying to tap into the emission free electricity provided by Mother Nature, but wind and sunshine are too intermittent.  They are not the panacea.  They come with their own ills.

12 Reasons Why Chaotically Intermittent & Heavily Subsidised Wind & Solar Power Make No Sense.  It takes a special brand of delusion to believe that the world can run on sunshine and breezes.  For wind and sun worshippers, disastrous examples like South Australia — where mass blackouts and load shedding have become the new normal — require not just practiced delusion but a form of self-flagellating stoicism, as well.  Oh, almost forgot to mention, that RE superpower suffers the world's highest power prices.  And it reached that infamous status after it blew up its last coal-fired power plant.  The wind industry has had more than 30 years to get its act together.  It was built on subsidies and wouldn't last a minute without them.  But, still, there are plenty happy to roll out the excuses and plead for more of the same.

Renewable Energy Hits the Wall.  If the official definitions of renewable energy were logical, renewable energy would be defined as energy that does not emit CO2 and that is not using a resource in danger of running out anytime soon.  But the definitions written into the laws of many states are not logical.  Hydroelectric energy is mostly banned because the environmental movement hates dams.  Nuclear is banned because a hysterical fear of nuclear energy was created by environmental groups.  Both nuclear and hydro don't emit CO2.  Hydro doesn't need fuel.  Nuclear fuel is cheap and plentiful.

Germany's renewable energy program, Energiewende, is a big, expensive failure.  The goal of Energiewende was to make Germany independent of fossil fuels.  But it hasn't worked out.  The 29,000 wind turbines and 1.6 million PV systems provide only 3.1% of Germany's energy needs and have cost well over 100 billion Euros so far and likely another 450 billion Euros over the next two decades.  And much more than that when you add in the extra cost of maintaining fossil generation systems to back up the lack of wind and sunshine from seconds to weeks.  Because of their extremely low energy density and need for a great deal of space, forests are being cut down, pits dug, and filled with hundreds of tons of reinforced concrete for wind turbines to stand on, 5 acres per turbine.

Cost-Effective 'Renewable' Energy Is A Fictional Construct.  The left just loves to tout "renewable energy" as the clean, green panacea, something that will save the Earth. [...] Just as electric cars require belching coal plants to produce the gas to fire up the electrical power charging stations, so the wind farms require massive amounts of resources just to get those necessary rare earth minerals, along with Mexican-style quantities of concrete and other unpicturesque things Joni Mitchell once sang against.

Climate Trillions Frittered in the Wind.  This year, the world will spend $162 billion (US) subsidising renewable energy, propping up inefficient industries and supporting middle-class homeowners to erect solar panels, according to the International Energy Agency.  In addition, the Paris Agreement on climate change will cost theworld from $1 to $2 trillion (US) a year by 2030.  Astonishingly, neither of these hugely expensive policies will have any measurable impact on temperatures by the end of the century.

Why wind and solar will never work.  This paper by Mark Mills of the the Manhattan Institute and Northwestern University's McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, titled "The 'New Energy Economy': An Exercise in Magical Thinking," does an excellent job of explaining why wind and solar energy will never replace fossil fuels or nuclear energy as a primary energy source.  The problem is fundamental:  the laws of physics.  And, no, better batteries are not a solution.

41 Inconvenient Energy Realities.  A week doesn't pass without a mayor, governor, policymaker or pundit joining the rush to demand, or predict, an energy future that is entirely based on wind/solar and batteries, freed from the "burden" of the hydrocarbons that have fueled societies for centuries.  Regardless of one's opinion about whether, or why, an energy "transformation" is called for, the physics and economics of energy combined with scale realities make it clear that there is no possibility of anything resembling a radically "new energy economy" in the foreseeable future.

Batteries Not Included; The True Levelized Cost of Renewables.  A fascinating article by Roger Andrews at Energy Matters gets into a matter of the highest importance when it comes to renewables.  It addresses something that might seem arcane; the Levelized Cost of Energy or LCOE.  The truth, though, is that traditional measures of the costs associated with renewables not only don't account for many of the subsidies involved, but also fail to consider the intermittency of renewable energy.  Given the fact renewable energy generated at the wrong time is a cost, not a feature, the intermittency issue always has to be addressed with batteries which are not considered in costs.  But, if they are considered, we quickly see the true costs of renewables, which are enormous.

Disentangling the Renewable Energy Scam.  The solar energy industry is telling its pals in Congress that it is willing to lose most of its subsidies.  The current subsidy for solar is 30% of the construction cost.  To that subsidy, an additional 10% subsidy is available due to special fast depreciation for solar energy plants.  The 30% subsidy is scheduled to ramp down to 10% by 2022 and thereafter remain at 10%.  This is not a consequence of declining costs of solar that makes the industry no longer in need of such a large subsidy.  Solar electricity is a mature industry, and cost declines are moderate.  The real reason the solar people are happy with a lower subsidy is that the 30% investment tax credit (ITC) is not their most important subsidy.  The real subsidy is more complicated and better hidden.

Disentangling the Renewable Energy Scam.  Renewable energy has been defined in an illogical way so as to favor solar and wind.  The ostensible motive for increasing renewable energy is to lower carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and thus avoid a supposed global warming catastrophe.  But hydro and nuclear are prohibited from being used to meet the renewable energy quota, even though they don't emit CO2.

The Energy Solution That Should Make Everyone Happy.  Renewable energy is a crackpot invention of the environmental Left.  Supposedly, renewable energy uses sources of energy that will not run out, anytime soon, like the sun.  Renewable energy must not emit CO2, because that might cause global warming.  But the renewable energy proselytizers can't stick to their story.  Hydroelectricity is obviously renewable, but it is excluded because the environmental Left hates dams.  Geothermal energy, using the heat in hot rocks underground to generate electricity, is considered renewable, even though the hot rocks frequently cool because the heat is used up.  The "fuel" runs out.  Wind and solar are loved by the environmental Left, even though they are expensive and brimming with serious problems.  Nuclear is hated and not considered renewable, even though it emits no CO2, the fuel is potentially inexhaustible, and there are no noxious substances coming out of smokestacks.

Think California's green, insider, pay-to-play politics is bad?  It's about to get worse.  Let's looks at energy:  what is "green" energy?  A source that doesn't use fossil fuels, right?  No, because nuclear power plants are not "green." "Green New Deal" champions like Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., oppose nuclear power.  What about hydropower?  Surely that's "green."  The Los Angeles Times reports that in California, hydropower near Yosemite National Park, which has "been churning out carbon-free electricity for nearly a century," is somehow not counted as green.  Hydropower is responsible for between 5 and 15 percent of California's energy, none of it's "green" because of dishonest lawmakers and the green lobby that pulls their marionette strings.  They are pushing lawmakers to restrict what it means to be "green," so only wind and solar, the industry's favored companies, can benefit.

Solar Power to Hit the Wall in Nevada.  Solar power and wind power are the dominant methods of generating electricity that are acceptable to the extreme left.  The left calls its acceptable methods of generating electricity "renewable energy."  The definition of renewable energy, enshrined in renewable portfolio laws in many states, tells us what the left likes and doesn't like.  It is very arbitrary.  The general idea of renewable energy is that it doesn't use fuel that could run out and it doesn't emit CO2.  But the left breaks its own rules as is convenient.  For example, nuclear power doesn't emit CO2 and running out of fuel is strictly theoretical.  Nuclear is also reliable with steady delivery of electricity.  The prospects for new technology in the nuclear universe are very bright.  Yet, nuclear is arbitrarily banned in renewable portfolio laws.  Incredibly, most renewable portfolio laws effectively ban hydroelectric power too, because the environmental left does not like dams.

We Shouldn't Be Surprised Renewables Make Energy Expensive Since That's Always Been The Greens' Goal.  In 2018, I reported that renewables had contributed to electricity prices rising 50% in Germany and five times more in California than in the rest of the US despite generating just 17% of the state's electricity.  And in April, a research institute at the University of Chicago led by a former Obama administration economist found solar and wind were making electricity significantly more expensive across the United States.  The cost to consumers of renewables has been staggeringly high.  Two weeks ago, Der Spiegel reported that Germany spent $36 billion per year on renewables over the last five years, and yet only increased the share of electricity from solar and wind by 10 percentage points.  It's been a similar story in the US.  "All in all," wrote the University of Chicago economists, "consumers in the 29 states had paid $125.2 billion more for electricity than they would have in the absence of the policy."

Energy and Geopolitics Are under Attack.  Global warming.  Climate change.  Renewable energy.  Carbon-free societies.  All of these terms have gained status as the balm to eliminate fossil fuels, which is supposedly causing anthropogenic global warming. [...] Nothing energizes environmentalists and citizens like renewable energy.  But in every single place renewables have been implemented, they are a disaster.  In Germany, Denmark, Spain, Britain, South Australia, Vermont, Minnesota, New Mexico (in the beginning stages of maligning fossil fuels), Arkansas, California, and Texas, solar and wind farms have been valiantly attempted, and they have failed every single time.

Green energy schemes have been costly failures.  Fully ~85% of global primary energy is from fossil fuels — oil, coal and natural gas.  The remaining ~15% is almost all nuclear and hydro.  Green energy has increased from above 1% to less than 2%, despite many trillions of dollars in wasted subsidies.  The 85% fossil fuels component is essentially unchanged in past decades, and is unlikely to significantly change in future decades.  The fatal flaw of grid-connected green energy is that it is not green and produces little useful (dispatchable) energy, primarily due to intermittency — the wind does not blow all the time, and the Sun shines only part of the day.  Intermittent grid-connected green energy requires almost 100% backup ("spinning reserve") from conventional energy sources.  Renewable wind and solar electrical generation schemes typically do not even significantly reduce CO2 emissions — all they do is increase energy costs.  Claims that grid-scale energy storage will solve the intermittency problem have proven false to date.  The only proven grid-scale "super-battery" is pumped storage, and suitable sites are rare — Alberta is bigger than many countries, and has no sites suitable for grid-scale pumped storage systems.

Exposing the Real Costs of "Green" Energy.  Today Center of the American Experiment released a groundbreaking paper that addresses a relatively mild "green" proposal:  legislation that would raise the renewable energy standard in Minnesota from 25% to 50%.  Two of my staffers have been working on the paper for months, drawing on publicly available (but rarely consulted) sources to understand what would be necessary to achieve that 50% goal, what it would cost, how it would impact the state's economy, and what effect it would have on global temperatures.  The paper is titled "Doubling Down on Failure:  How a 50 Percent by 2030 Renewable Energy Standard Would Cost Minnesota $80.2 Billion."  With appendices, it runs to 75 pages.

Why "Green" Energy Will Never Replace Fossil Fuels.  Regular readers of this site are well aware of the inherent inferiority of intermittent energy sources like wind and solar.  Nevertheless, the states of California and Hawaii have pledged to get all of their electricity from renewable sources (wind and solar), as have numerous cities and counties.  Unfortunately, it can't be done, at any price.

A Trove of New Research Documents the Folly of Renewable Energy Promotion.  The advocacy for widespread growth in renewable energy (especially wind, solar, and biomass) usage has increasingly become the clarion call of the anthropogenic global warming (AGW) movement.  And yet more and more published research documents the adverse effects of relying on renewables.

The Ridiculous Myth Of Powering The Nation With Renewable Energy.  Technocrats should back up a few steps and look at the foolishness of their plans:  To power America with 100% renewable enerty they propose 500,000 wind turbines, 18 billion square feet of solar panels, 75 million residential rooftop systems, 50,000 wind and solar farms.  The projected cost is a minimum of $15.2 Trillion.  However, we are already fully powered with enough oil, natural gas and coal resources to last another 200 years.

Is 100 Percent Renewable Energy Possible?  It probably is possible to run on 100% renewable power, if you don't mind crippling the economy by devoting vast sums to that pointless goal.  It won't make much difference in CO2 emissions unless you can convince the Asians, who make most of the CO2 emissions, to also switch to 100% renewable energy.

The green empress has no clothes.  During December 2017, Germany's millions of solar panels received just 10 hours of sunshine, and when solar energy did filter through the clouds, most of the panels were covered in snow.  Even committed Green Disciples with a huge Tesla battery in their garage soon found that their battery was flat and that there was no solar energy to recharge it.  The lights, heaters, trains, TVs, and phones ran on German coal power, French nuclear power, Russian gas, and Scandinavian hydro, plus unpredictable surges of electricity from those few wind turbines that were not iced up, locked down in a gale, or becalmed.

Truly Green?  How Germany's 'Energy Transition' is destroying nature.  The German Green Party was founded in 1980.  The Greens promised to save nature.  They wanted to be the protectors of forests, birds and rivers.  But their policies have led to the most widespread destruction of nature in Germany since the Second World War.  No industry consumes as much land as the generation of 'natural electricity'.

Puerto Rico Might Ditch Oil to Build New Electric Grid Using Renewable Energies.  With the majority of Puerto Rico's 3.4 million citizens still without power following Hurricane Maria, the commonwealth's government is floating the idea of starting from scratch as it rebuilds — ditching oil dependency and moving toward renewable energies.

The Editor says...
Brilliant idea, because everybody knows windmills and solar panels are impervious to tropical weather.

Evaluation of a proposal for grid power with 100% wind, water, and solar.  A number of analyses, meta-analyses, and assessments, including those performed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and the International Energy Agency, have concluded that deployment of a diverse portfolio of clean energy technologies makes a transition to a low-carbon-emission energy system both more feasible and less costly than other pathways. [...] In particular, we point out that this work used invalid modeling tools, contained modeling errors, and made implausible and inadequately supported assumptions.  Policy makers should treat with caution any visions of a rapid, reliable, and low-cost transition to entire energy systems that relies almost exclusively on wind, solar, and hydroelectric power.

Renewable energy cost and reliability claims exposed and debunked.  A new paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) from NOAA's Earth System Laboratory, Boulder Colorado exposes and debunks the contrived claims of a recent renewable energy study which falsely alleged that low cost and reliable 100% renewable energy electric grids are possible.  The new paper concludes that the prior study is based upon significant modeling inadequacies, is "poorly executed" and contains "numerous shortcomings" and "errors" making it "unreliable as a guide about the likely cost, technical reliability, or feasibility of a 100% wind, solar and hydroelectric power system."

The Appalling Delusion of 100 Percent Renewables, Exposed.  he idea that the U.S. economy can be run solely with renewable energy — a claim that leftist politicians, environmentalists, and climate activists have endlessly promoted — has always been a fool's errand.  And on Monday, the National Academy of Sciences published a blockbuster paper by an all-star group of American scientists that says exactly that.  The paper, by Chris Clack, formerly with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the University of Colorado Boulder, and 20 other top scientists, appeared in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.  It decimates the work of Mark Jacobson, the Stanford engineering professor whose wildly exaggerated claims about the economic and technical viability of a 100 percent renewable-energy system has made him a celebrity (he appeared on David Letterman's show in 2013) and the hero of Sierra Clubbers, Bernie Sanders, and Hollywood movie stars, including Leonardo DiCaprio.

NY's Renewable Energy Plan Gets Dirty .  New York governor Andrew Cuomo's renewable-energy ambitions are running headlong into the hard realities of maintaining a reliable electric grid.  On July 8, the New York Independent System Operator, the agency charged with managing the state's grid, provided comments on the governor's plan to require utilities to get 50 percent of their electricity from renewables by 2030.  The NYISO maintains that to keep the lights on, the state will have to spend heavily on new transmission infrastructure to accommodate more renewables, preserve all of its nuclear capacity (including the controversial Indian Point Energy Center), and build even more onshore wind-energy capacity in upstate communities.  Five days after the NYISO filed its comments, Cuomo's energy czar, Richard Kauffman, fired off an angry — and rather bizarre — letter to Brad Jones, the NYISO president and CEO.  Calling the grid operator's comments "misleading, incomplete, and grossly inaccurate," Kauffman claimed that the NYISO showed "an alarming lack" of understanding of "how a modern grid can be developed and operated."

How Renewable Energy Is Blowing Climate Change Efforts Off Course .  Is the global effort to combat climate change, painstakingly agreed to in Paris seven months ago, already going off the rails?  Germany, Europe's champion for renewable energy, seems to be having second thoughts about its ambitious push to ramp up its use of renewable fuels for power generation.  Hoping to slow the burst of new renewable energy on its grid, the country eliminated an open-ended subsidy for solar and wind power and put a ceiling on additional renewable capacity.  Germany may also drop a timetable to end coal-fired generation, which still accounts for over 40 percent of its electricity, according to a report leaked from the country's environment ministry.  Instead, the government will pay billions to keep coal generators in reserve, to provide emergency power at times when the wind doesn't blow or the sun doesn't shine.

German Experience With Green Power A Lesson Obama Should Learn.  Since the early 1990s, Germany has gone to great lengths to replace fossil-fuel-generated electricity with renewables.  Renewable electricity accounted for nearly 30% of the country's electricity by the end of 2014.  Germany is thus roughly where Obama hopes to take America over the next 15 years — he's even called on Americans to "look at Berlin" for inspiration.  But what are Germany's results?  Dramatically higher energy costs for businesses and consumers, an increasingly unstable electricity grid and a recent increase in carbon emissions.

Feds Pull Plug on Wave Power Project.  The federal government has cancelled permits for a wave power project on the California coast.  Renewable power advocates had hailed the project as an alternative to conventional energy sources.

The collapse of the green-energy bubble.  The parallel-energy universe known as renewables, a place where dollars and economic theory know no bounds and make no sense, looks increasingly like a bubble set to collapse.

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Updated May 17, 2021.

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