‘Green’ energy needs a 2nd look
German problems with the new "green" energy illustrates some of the basic faults and hidden costs with this evolving scam (Economist, June 15, 2013).
“The trouble is that most wind and solar power is generated a long way from the parts of the country where the nuclear power plants are to be shut-off. Germany needs more than 4000 km of new transmission lines."
“A second problem is that… renewable energy is intermittent. The wind does not blow, sun does not shine. Bulk electricity storage is still in its infancy (the ball park cost for energy storage would triple or quadruple the cost of green energy)… so Germany still needs back-up capacity of conventional generation power. If the state includes massive subsides to construct natural gas power plants, 40 percent efficient, available to be turned on/off on/off on/off at the whim of the wind, only then can natural gas generation fill this roll, a NON competitive position. Aging coal power plants with low variable costs can complete."
The result is a web of grotesque distortions. On sunny days, Germany pushes its excess power on to the European grid at a loss. On cloudy days, Germany relies ever more on brown coal.
Last year, its CO2 emissions rose. The cost of this mess is passed on to electricity users. Household fuel bills have gone up by 25 percent over the past three years, to 40 percent -50 percent above the EU average.
Local greens create, in the minds of your readers, a production that is convenient, seductive and easy to recite.
This then is the content of environmental discourse. Solar cells have come to define what it means to be an environmentalist.
Every simplistic news article, green letter to the editor, protest, congressional hearing and bumper sticker creates another occasion for the visibility of solar, wind and other green productions to increase.
Do they ever cite any of the limitations of solar or wind? Rather, greens chant objectives without reflecting upon the numerous consequences of such.
This is an articulated promise the greens adopt and repeat, however, it is an empty promise.
As the planet continues to cool now, those who argued that the science is "settled" look increasingly desperate. Consider all this, regarding any green promise.