WetEV
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Fri Jan 08, 2016 9:29 am

RegGuheert wrote:The bottom line: El Hierro island was touted as going 100% renewable by many pundits, but they have managed to only achieve a renewable fraction just over 30%. It appears that the island ran entirely off renewable energy for about 2 hours in 2015.


Note that several different operational modes are apparent in the data. Hydro has been used as load following at times, and diesel has been used as load following at times. Practice often finds flaws that theory didn't expect. This is a large scale experiment, data collection under different conditions is probably the most important goal at the start, and not maximizing the renewable fraction from day one. I wouldn't draw any firm conclusions without a year of data in the final operational mode.

100% wasn't a realistic goal for this project, and I don't think that was promised by the people designing and building the project. For example:

http://www.hydroworld.com/articles/print/volume-20/issue-5/articles/pumped-storage/creating-a-hybrid-hydro-wind-system-on.html wrote:Realistically, however, about 65% of island's total annual energy demand will be covered by the hybrid hydro-wind plant.


It is very hard to get to 100% with a source that varies as much as wind power does.

Judging the success or failure of the project on something that was not a realistic goal isn't helpful.


RegGuheert wrote:It's easy for commenters to walk in and state their opinion that it is cheap and easy to convert the world to 100% renewable energy. In reality, it is both difficult AND expensive, both in terms of cost and the damage done to the environment.


Every choice has a cost, and risks. Failure to acknowledge the risks and costs of fossil fuel may well be fatal to civilization.
WetEV
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RegGuheert
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Fri Jan 08, 2016 10:16 am

WetEV wrote:This is a large scale experiment, data collection under different conditions is probably the most important goal at the start, and not maximizing the renewable fraction from day one.
Data collection for the report I linked started almost one year after "day one". Note that the renewable fraction was maximum at the beginning of the data presented. For the past four months, renewables have produced very little electricity on El Hierro island.
WetEV wrote:I wouldn't draw any firm conclusions without a year of data in the final operational mode.
It's a six-month cut approximately from summer solstice to winter solstice. The picture likely won't change much after a year has passed.
WetEV wrote:100% wasn't a realistic goal for this project, and I don't think that was promised by the people designing and building the project. For example:

http://www.hydroworld.com/articles/print/volume-20/issue-5/articles/pumped-storage/creating-a-hybrid-hydro-wind-system-on.html wrote:Realistically, however, about 65% of island's total annual energy demand will be covered by the hybrid hydro-wind plant.
30% is hardly close to 65%. It seems that the people designing and building the project oversold the capability of this system badly. There is a LOT of that going on these days with renewable energy and it only hurts the cause of trying to increase the fraction of these systems going forward.
WetEV wrote:It is very hard to get to 100% with a source that varies as much as wind power does.
Agreed. And that is particularly true in a case such as this where the wind is VERY seasonal. The thesis you put forth in this thread is very well-founded.
WetEV wrote:Judging the success or failure of the project on something that was not a realistic goal isn't helpful.
But putting a stop to repeated nonsense IS helpful because it helps to eliminate the misapplication of these technologies. (And I'm not saying the El Hierro project was a bad idea. What I am saying is that it was sold under false pretenses. If I lived on an island, I'd by all for reducing or eliminating diesel purchases, ESPECIALLY if someone else was paying for it!)
WetEV wrote:Failure to acknowledge the risks and costs of fossil fuel may well be fatal to civilization.
Nonsense. CO2 has NO ability to heat the oceans and can only reduce the temperature drop of the top 1millimeter surface of the oceans by a mere 0.001K. In other words, it doesn't have any meaningful effect on the heat stored in oceans, which represents 2100X as much energy storage as the atmosphere. As far as lapse rate in the atmosphere goes, the CO2 emissions layer is in the tropopause where an increase or decrease in the height has NO effect on temperature. And, no, CO2 does not control water vapor. In fact, water vapor moves in the opposite direction to that which many alarmists suggest. As such, CO2 is really a "don't care" when it comes to the climate of our planet. But note that adding CO2 to our atmosphere has real, measurable benefits to the biosphere which are extremely well documented in the scientific literature.

The temperature of the earth is controlled by the amount of global cloud cover we have. Some day, scientists may be able to predict the amount of cloud cover, but until that point, we have no way to accurately model future temperature trends.

There are "real" reasons to cut down or eliminate the burning of fossil fuels, but preventing the extinction of man is not among them.
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WetEV
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Fri Jan 08, 2016 3:16 pm

RegGuheert wrote:
WetEV wrote:This is a large scale experiment, data collection under different conditions is probably the most important goal at the start, and not maximizing the renewable fraction from day one.
It's a six-month cut approximately from summer solstice to winter solstice. The picture likely won't change much after a year has passed.


http://www.windfinder.com/windstatistics/hierro

Looks to me like September, October, November and December are the low months for wind. This would suggest that a full year would be better than a roughly 6 month period from late June to end of December.

RegGuheert wrote:30% is hardly close to 65%. It seems that the people designing and building the project oversold the capability of this system badly. There is a LOT of that going on these days with renewable energy and it only hurts the cause of trying to increase the fraction of these systems going forward.


Well, there surely are people that oversold this project, a rather long list to be sure, but I've seen no evidence that the people designing and building this project are on that list, at least so far. Not enough data, for one.

RegGuheert wrote:
WetEV wrote:Failure to acknowledge the risks and costs of fossil fuel may well be fatal to civilization.
Nonsense. CO2 ...


Notice that I didn't say anything about CO2 or climate change. Need an alternative suggestion? Off topic, of course, but I'm sure you could think of a few.
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WetEV
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Sat Jan 09, 2016 6:40 am

RegGuheert wrote:CO2 has NO ability to heat the oceans


I don't want to divert this thread, so following up on climate here:

viewtopic.php?f=52&t=19444#p416627
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Tue Jan 19, 2016 12:42 pm

WetEV wrote:100% wasn't a realistic goal for this project, and I don't think that was promised by the people designing and building the project. For example:

http://www.hydroworld.com/articles/print/volume-20/issue-5/articles/pumped-storage/creating-a-hybrid-hydro-wind-system-on.html wrote:Realistically, however, about 65% of island's total annual energy demand will be covered by the hybrid hydro-wind plant.


It is very hard to get to 100% with a source that varies as much as wind power does.

It won't make sense until you recall the scope of the entire transition. The goal is not to provide 100% of "energy" from wind and hydro - the goal for the wind/hydro system is to provide electricity. Much of the space- and water heating, formerly provided by electricity, is being moved to solar thermal collection. That accounts for about 40% of total energy needs. Please note how nicely 65% and 40% fit together.
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WetEV
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Tue Jan 19, 2016 1:02 pm

AndyH wrote:
WetEV wrote:100% wasn't a realistic goal for this project, and I don't think that was promised by the people designing and building the project. For example:
It is very hard to get to 100% with a source that varies as much as wind power does.

It won't make sense until you recall the scope of the entire transition. The goal is not to provide 100% of "energy" from wind and hydro - the goal for the wind/hydro system is to provide electricity.


Ok, then providing 100% of the electricity isn't a realistic goal. There is far too little storage and excess wind capacity to get to 100%

Getting to 65% of the electric load, on the other hand, is realistic.


AndyH wrote: Much of the space- and water heating, formerly provided by electricity, is being moved to solar thermal collection. That accounts for about 40% of total energy needs. Please note how nicely 65% and 40% fit together.


Please notice how wind minimum production doesn't line up with space heating needs.
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Tue Jan 19, 2016 1:07 pm

WetEV wrote:
AndyH wrote:
WetEV wrote:100% wasn't a realistic goal for this project, and I don't think that was promised by the people designing and building the project. For example:
It is very hard to get to 100% with a source that varies as much as wind power does.

It won't make sense until you recall the scope of the entire transition. The goal is not to provide 100% of "energy" from wind and hydro - the goal for the wind/hydro system is to provide electricity.


Ok, then providing 100% of the electricity isn't a realistic goal. There is far too little storage and excess wind capacity to get to 100%


:?

WetEV wrote:
AndyH wrote: Much of the space- and water heating, formerly provided by electricity, is being moved to solar thermal collection. That accounts for about 40% of total energy needs. Please note how nicely 65% and 40% fit together.


Please notice how wind minimum production doesn't line up with space heating needs.

Since space heating will no longer be provided by electricity, it doesn't matter one whit what the wind turbines are doing.
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Sun Feb 07, 2016 4:44 pm

El Hierro – 16 hours of 100% renewables generation
Posted on February 2, 2016 by Roger Andrews
Between 0540 and 2140 hours on January 31 2016 the Gorona del Viento (GdV) wind-hydro plant supplied the island of El Hierro with 100% of its electricity from renewables. This short post provides plots of the REE grid data for that day and adds a few provisional observations.

January 31 was undoubtedly a pre-planned test. Press announcements had already been prepared, and conditions were right (“The councillor of Gorona del Viento, Juan Pedro Sánchez, states that the predictions for today are good, and in case of a reduction in wind the water accumulated in the upper reservoir gives us the possibility of responding immediately with hydro to continue filling all of El Hierro’s demand”). It was a also a Sunday, when demand was at a minimum. The test of August 9, 2015, where GdV achieved 2 hours of 100% renewables generation, was on a Sunday too. . . .
http://euanmearns.com/el-hierro-16-hour ... eneration/

As is often the case with posts on the above site, the comments provide a lot of very detailed extra information.
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Thu Apr 21, 2016 6:22 am

Renewables clearly won't work, and they're waaaay too expensive besides. At least we have nuclear.



"...the most expensive power station that has ever been built by the human race that will produce the most expensive electricity that has ever been conceived..." 18,000,000,000 pounds...so far... for 3GW of generation... :shock:

Severely overpriced, so heavily subsidized that money is being pulled from renewables, many years overdue and billions over budget, and we get to pay for secure storage of waste for thousands of years? Yes, please - I'll take six! :roll:
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Re: Economics of Renewable Power, simplified.

Sun Apr 24, 2016 2:12 pm

And I thought TVA's "brand new" Watts Bar nuclear was expensive at $7B US for 2 GW.

It was downright cheap compared to Hinkley Point C ;) :D :)

Of course it took 40 years to design and build.
And when they decided to finish it a few years back it was supposed to take $2.5 B US for completion.
It took more than $4B US.

So similar cost overrun issues.

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