Before you throw your heart into ‘green’ energy, take some time off to watch these 2 documentaries and hear what people are saying.
After watching all this, you don’t have to be any kind of a genius to figure out that wind and solar generation are never going to replace fossil fuels in powering the world economy. The main reason is that the wind and sun only work part time, indeed well less than half of the time at best. With wind, you never know when it might work, and over a year a given facility might on average produce about 30-35% of rated capacity, with long and random periods of nothing. With the sun, you know from the get-go that you will get nothing fully half the time (i.e., night); and cloudy days wipe out half and more of the remaining half, again at random times. Averaged over the year, you’ll be lucky to get 20% of rated capacity from a solar facility.
With the world economy finally bouncing back (hopefully) from the year-and-a-half of pandemic, this is the moment for wind and solar to step up and show what they can do. All the advanced economies (Europe, UK, U.S., Canada, Australia) have been pushing wind and solar for a couple of decades, with tens of billions of dollars of various subsidies and tax breaks. There are now wind turbines and solar panels all over the place. Simultaneously the same countries have shuttered coal plants, reduced nuclear, banned fracking in many places (Europe, the UK, and much of the U.S.), and discouraged fossil fuels of every sort in a hundred different ways. Now there is a surge in demand for manufactured goods of every sort. That will take some energy. Let’s see what the wind and the sun can do:
The answer is that when they are needed they are useless.
Which brings me to two front page articles in the Wall Street Journal the past two days. Yesterday it was “Coal Shortages Weigh on global Economies.” Excerpt:
Coal supply shortages are pushing prices for the fuel to record highs and laying bare the challenges to weaning the global economy off one of its most important—and polluting—energy sources. The crunch has many causes—from the post-pandemic boom to supply-chain strains and ambitious targets for reducing carbon emissions. And it is expected to last at least through the winter, raising fears in many countries of fuel shortfalls in the months ahead.
Like I always say: north, east, south, west: gas best!
(no sulphur and 50% less carbon emission compared to coal and wood).