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Discussion Starter #2,181
Green Electricity Delusions

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.
Bold mine.

Wait! Wha...???

But I've been assured by the best Prog sociologist out there that parity had been achieved!

Shocka...

More:

Natural-gas plants have a fuel cost of about $15 per megawatt hour. Wind or solar with battery backup costs about $130 per megawatt hour. For grid stability reasons new wind and solar plants are being equipped with battery storage, greatly increasing the cost. Without the battery backup wind or solar electricity costs around $75 per megawatt hour. To be clear, the electricity supplied by wind or solar at $75 to $130 per megawatt hour (not counting subsidies) could be generated in existing fossil fuel plants for $15 per megawatt hour.
Bold mine.

Further:

Why the various states and the federal government continue to pursue, mandate, and subsidize green electricity is a mystery best explained by psychiatrists and students of propaganda.
Bold mine.

No argument.
 

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Discussion Starter #2,182
Finally! Alternative energy I can get behind.

Alberta studies nuclear power again — this time, it's small modular reactors

On Friday, Premier Jason Kenney signalled the province will sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to join three other provinces to support the development of small modular reactors.

Known as SMRs, these reactors would cost less to build than larger-scale plants. They could eventually be used to power remote communities, as well as provide steam for oilsands developments, instead of burning natural gas, according to the province.

“They are small and can be mass-produced, which means that we can dramatically bring down the cost with mass production,” said John Gorman, CEO of the Canadian Nuclear Association.
Caution: Link to the Grope & Flail.

Alberta to join other provinces in exploring small nuclear technology

The Alberta government says it plans to join three other provinces in exploring small-scale nuclear technology.

New Brunswick, Saskatchewan and Ontario signed a memorandum of understanding in December regarding development of small modular reactors.

Alberta says in a news release that it will also enter into the agreement to help diversify its energy sector.
Alberta to explore small-scale nuclear tech

Our government is exploring all opportunities that could help diversify our economy and create jobs for Albertans,” says Jason Kenney in a release. “We are building on our track record of responsible and innovative energy production by exploring the potential for small modular reactors, which have the potential to generate reliable and affordable energy, while also strengthening our traditional resource sectors and reducing emissions. We are excited to collaborate with our provincial partners to stay ahead of the game in the development of this promising technology.”
Bold mine.

Wait for the hue & cry from the left. They want us to diversify our economy, yet nuclear ist verboten...
 

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Finally! Alternative energy I can get behind.

Alberta studies nuclear power again — this time, it's small modular reactors

Caution: Link to the Grope & Flail.

Alberta to join other provinces in exploring small nuclear technology

Alberta to explore small-scale nuclear tech

Bold mine.

Wait for the hue & cry from the left. They want us to diversify our economy, yet nuclear ist verboten...
I can recall more than 50 years ago doc Rowland telling a Physics 101 class that the problem of nuclear waste would be easily resolved. Has not happened yet.

However if we are talking Thorium reactors using something other than Flouride salts as a cooling medium, I could really get behind this.
 

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Discussion Starter #2,184
California’s Blackouts Display The Results Of Kamala Harris’s Favored Energy Policy

It’s hot out West and California’s electricity grid is under tremendous strain. The state’s first intentional rolling blackouts since its 2001 energy crisis hit on Friday. Tuesday’s forecast electricity demand is likely to exceed the record reached in 2006. Also, if it weren’t for substantial imports of electricity from coal- and gas-fired power plants in other Western states, it would be far worse.

California’s energy travails come at an embarrassing time for the Democratic national presidential ticket of former Vice President Joe Biden and California Sen. Kamala Harris.
 

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Discussion Starter #2,185
MSNBC's Chris Hayes on Trump Base: White Guys Without College Degrees, Enough Cash to Buy a Boat

Not unlike disgraced ex-FBI official Peter Strzok, who said he could "smell the Trump support" at a Southern Virginia Walmart, MSNBC's Chris Hayes let his left-wing Ivy League arrogance show by describing the Trump political base as "white men without a four-year degree" and just enough extra income "to buy a boat."
Let's jump right to the punchline:

Hayes apparently is not familiar with the history of the Democrat Party, slavery, the Confederacy, the KKK, Jim Crow and segregation.
Yeah, bold mine...
 

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Discussion Starter #2,186
Further on Gang Green

California’s Electric Grid Is Near Collapse

Michael Shellenberger, best-selling author of “Apocalypse Never,” Tweeted: “California’s bet on renewables, & its shunning of natural gas & nuclear, is directly responsible for the state’s blackouts and high electricity prices,” and warned about the Biden-Harris plan.

California’s bet on renewables, & its shunning of natural gas & nuclear, is directly responsible for the state’s blackouts and high electricity prices.

The Biden-Harris plan is even more aggressive. “There is no [US] state right now [as] ambitious”https://t.co/skblJYHcyU

— Mike Shellenberger (@ShellenbergerMD) August 18, 2020​

Watts provided a chart showing California’s growing power outages between 2008 and 2017:
Hell, nothing a coupla trillion p!$$sed away on battery banks can't fix!

From the comments:

...
Besides, blackouts result in a lot of folks and businesses running generators as backup power and they pollute more than a large NG plant.

And-It’s been well known for a while that the increasing demand from charging EVs would put significant stress the CA Grid.
 

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Discussion Starter #2,188
Progs'll hate it...

A nuclear battery that never needs charging?

A California company, NDB (which stands for nuclear diamond battery), is developing a nuclear battery using waste products from nuclear power plants that will never need charging and will be able to replace almost any ordinary battery, from those used in computers and smart phones to AA and AAA batteries.

...

The company says it has already built a proof-of-concept, and will begin building commercial prototypes as soon as it can reopen (they were shuttered by the Wuhan flu panic).
 

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Discussion Starter #2,189
Caution, Progs: Empirical data & math enclosed. Your head will explode. You've been warned.

Not news to anyone paying attention:

There’s no such thing as clean energy

All good environmentalists detest renewables and are appalled at the money wasted on the industrial renewables corporations.

All the rest are unwitting marketing agents who provide free advertising for banks and multinational conglomerate profits. In the process they hurt the poor and scorch the Earth.

In short: The world spent $3.6 trillion dollars over eight years, mostly trying to change the weather. Only a pitiful 5% of this was spent trying to adapt to the inevitable bad weather which is coming one way or another. Both solar and wind power are perversely useless at reducing CO2, which is their only reason for existing in large otherwise efficient grids. Wind farms raise the temperature of the local area around them which causes more CO2 to be released from the soil. Solar and wind farms waste 100 times the wilderness land area compared to fossil fuels, and need ten times as many minerals mined from the earth. Biomass razes forests, but protects underground coal deposits.

The role of large wind and solar power in national grids is to produce redundant surges of electricity at random or low-need times. They are surplus infrastructure designed in a religious quest to generate nicer weather. They always make electricity more expensive because the minor fuel savings are vastly overrun by the extra costs of misusing and abusing perfectly good infrastructure, which has to be there to provide baseload and backup, and yet is forced to run on and off, sitting around consuming capital, investments, labor and maintenance. It is simply impossible to imagine a situation where unreliable generators have some productive purpose on major grids other than to generate profits for shareholders or their mostly Chinese manufacturers.

Despite the extortionate, futile mountain-of-money paid to wind and solar parasites, they produced a pitiful 3% of all the energy needed on Earth, while fossil fuels produced 85%.

Everyone who loves renewables should be asking themselves how much they hate the poor.
Links' bold, my italics.
 

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Some promising new battery technologies...

Why Vanadium Flow Batteries May Be The Future Of Utility-Scale Energy Storage

Vanadium is an element that can commonly exist in four different oxidation states. That just means that it can exist as an ion with different charges. For example, a vanadium ion that is missing three electrons would have a charge of V3+. If you add an electron to it, it converts to a V2+ ion. This transfer of electrons back and forth is what makes VFBs charge and discharge, as the vanadium ions in the battery swing from V2+ to V5+.

This differs from lithium-ion batteries in that every time lithium charges and discharges it is plating and deplating lithium metal on the cathode. Although this reaction is almost completely reversible, it will lead to degradation after a few thousand cycles and performance will decrease.

A VFB consists of two tanks of electrolyte dissolved in water and separated by a proton exchange membrane. Both electrolytes are vanadium-based. As the batteries are charged and discharged, vanadium ions are simply moved between oxidation states. According to Matt, this can be done tens of thousands of times over a time period measured in decades, with no degradation in the ability of the vanadium solutions to hold charge.

They estimate that every 10-20 years, the membrane that the ionic species crosses over will require a replacement. Again, this is unlike a lithium-ion battery where the entire battery would need to be replaced. They compared this to maintenance on a car. Matt indicated they have products in the field that have done more than 30 years of charging and discharging cycling.

Li-ion batteries do have an advantage in energy density, which is why VFBs are being targeted for stationary applications. However, compared to Li-ion batteries for grid scale storage, there is no fire risk with VFBs. Li-ion batteries need to be spaced farther apart or have sufficient fire suppression. Thus, VFBs can be packed tighter than lithium, so the footprint for grid-scale operation is comparable.

Regarding the cost, Invinity reports that they sell their batteries at a price in the same ballpark as Li-ion per MWh for the industrial market. The benefit of Invinity’s VFB comes in the levelized cost over time because of the decades of service a single device can deliver. VFBs can charge and discharge multiple full cycles daily for 20 years. Even though you may get thousands of cycles with a Li-ion battery, for a utility or commercial storage application where daily cycling is needed that may not be enough to give Li-ion the advantage.

Invinity’s core technology – the “cell stack” at the core of the VFB - is developed and manufactured in Vancouver, Canada.

(...)

I asked about the supply of vanadium. I learned that vanadium is the 13th most abundant metallic element in the earth’s crust. It is more abundant than copper. Further, the supply of vanadium in the battery can be recycled practically endlessly as the vanadium ions are moved between oxidation states, and not destroyed or degraded. In addition to the vanadium electrolyte being infinitely reusable, the balance of Invinity’s VFB is made almost entirely of common materials, like steel and household plastics, that can be easily recycled.

There are large vanadium reserves in the U.S. At present, 90% of the supply goes into steel manufacture. So, steel-producing regions like China are currently the largest producers of vanadium.

(Forbes)​
 

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Some promising new battery technologies...

Why Vanadium Flow Batteries May Be The Future Of Utility-Scale Energy Storage
Vanadium is an element that can commonly exist in four different oxidation states. That just means that it can exist as an ion with different charges. For example, a vanadium ion that is missing three electrons would have a charge of V3+. If you add an electron to it, it converts to a V2+ ion. This transfer of electrons back and forth is what makes VFBs charge and discharge, as the vanadium ions in the battery swing from V2+ to V5+.

This differs from lithium-ion batteries in that every time lithium charges and discharges it is plating and deplating lithium metal on the cathode. Although this reaction is almost completely reversible, it will lead to degradation after a few thousand cycles and performance will decrease.

A VFB consists of two tanks of electrolyte dissolved in water and separated by a proton exchange membrane. Both electrolytes are vanadium-based. As the batteries are charged and discharged, vanadium ions are simply moved between oxidation states. According to Matt, this can be done tens of thousands of times over a time period measured in decades, with no degradation in the ability of the vanadium solutions to hold charge.

They estimate that every 10-20 years, the membrane that the ionic species crosses over will require a replacement. Again, this is unlike a lithium-ion battery where the entire battery would need to be replaced. They compared this to maintenance on a car. Matt indicated they have products in the field that have done more than 30 years of charging and discharging cycling.

Li-ion batteries do have an advantage in energy density, which is why VFBs are being targeted for stationary applications. However, compared to Li-ion batteries for grid scale storage, there is no fire risk with VFBs. Li-ion batteries need to be spaced farther apart or have sufficient fire suppression. Thus, VFBs can be packed tighter than lithium, so the footprint for grid-scale operation is comparable.

Regarding the cost, Invinity reports that they sell their batteries at a price in the same ballpark as Li-ion per MWh for the industrial market. The benefit of Invinity’s VFB comes in the levelized cost over time because of the decades of service a single device can deliver. VFBs can charge and discharge multiple full cycles daily for 20 years. Even though you may get thousands of cycles with a Li-ion battery, for a utility or commercial storage application where daily cycling is needed that may not be enough to give Li-ion the advantage.

Invinity’s core technology – the “cell stack” at the core of the VFB - is developed and manufactured in Vancouver, Canada.

(...)

I asked about the supply of vanadium. I learned that vanadium is the 13th most abundant metallic element in the earth’s crust. It is more abundant than copper. Further, the supply of vanadium in the battery can be recycled practically endlessly as the vanadium ions are moved between oxidation states, and not destroyed or degraded. In addition to the vanadium electrolyte being infinitely reusable, the balance of Invinity’s VFB is made almost entirely of common materials, like steel and household plastics, that can be easily recycled.

There are large vanadium reserves in the U.S. At present, 90% of the supply goes into steel manufacture. So, steel-producing regions like China are currently the largest producers of vanadium.

(Forbes)​
Ah so the choice is relatively clean oil and gas or massive Vanadium strip mines. Beyond that this further increases the cost of wind and solar as you have now added a storage element.


Still for taking a home off the grid, were the battery cost 1/4 of Li, it would be very attractive as it would remove the fire hazard and hopefully allow the batteries to be stored indoors.
 

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Discussion Starter #2,192
Hello, Bigot.

Which is all well & fine until you factor in that renewables cost nine times the fossil fuels they displace.

Based on that observation, I don't care what newfangled battery technology they come up with. Unlike expensive renewables, fossil & nuclear fuels don't require expensive battery storage to keep the planet running.

Some promising new battery technologies...
 

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Hello, Bigot.

Which is all well & fine until you factor in that renewables cost nine times the fossil fuels they displace.

Based on that observation, I don't care what newfangled battery technology they come up with. Unlike expensive renewables, fossil & nuclear fuels don't require expensive battery storage to keep the planet running.
Solving that "storage problem" that has not existed for 150 years.
 

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Discussion Starter #2,194
Solving that "storage problem" that has not existed for 150 years.
In fairness, Mom's family (as well as most rural Alberta residents of the time) relied on wind chargers & a lead acid battery system to provide basic electricity in the 20's, 30's & 40's, before rural electrification came along. We still have a set of 32 volt DC Christmas tree lights from the period tucked away somewhere.

Interestingly, many of the same issues with those early systems remain extant today, ie., no wind, no electricity, no matter how much battery backup...
 

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Have you given any consideration to the possibility that you've all become cranky old men, stuck in the past, unable to embrace any change for the better? That your prejudices are blinding you to progress?

Renewable Energy Prices Hit Record Lows: How Can Utilities Benefit From Unstoppable Solar And Wind?

New U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) data predict solar and wind energy will dominate America’s new generation in 2020, making up 76% of new generation and adding 42 gigawatts (GW) of zero emission capacity, while coal and natural gas will dominate 2020 retirements with 85% of plant closures.

EIA reports U.S. electricity generation from renewable energy exceeded coal for the first time in April 2019, and forecasts coal generation will decline 13% in 2020. EIA also projects natural gas generation will only grow 1.3% in 2020 – the slowest rate since 2017 – while non-hydropower renewable energy generation will grow 15% in 2020 – the fastest rate in four years.

(...)

Lazard’s most recent Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) analysis shows U.S. renewable energy prices continued falling fast in 2019, with wind and solar hitting new lows, after renewables fell below the cost of coal in 2018. LCOE measures the total cost of building and operating a facility over its lifetime, and shows renewables beating fossil fuels by ever-larger margins – even without subsidies – with that trend forecast to continue for decades to come.

Over the last decade, wind energy prices have fallen 70% and solar photovoltaics have fallen 89% on average, according to Lazard's 2019 report. Utility-scale renewable energy prices are now significantly below those for coal and gas generation, and they're less than half the cost of nuclear. The latest numbers again confirm that building new clean energy generation is cheaper than running existing coal plants.

(Forbes)​
 

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Discussion Starter #2,196
Hello, Bigot.

Have you given any consideration to the fact that you are complete & utter Prog, changing merely for the sake of change, jumping on the bandwagon of the next fashionable trend without examining actual facts? That your ideology blinds you to empirical evidence?

Have you given any consideration to the possibility that you've all become cranky old men, stuck in the past, unable to embrace any change for the better? That your prejudices are blinding you to progress?
 

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Have you given any consideration to the possibility that you've all become cranky old men, stuck in the past, unable to embrace any change for the better? That your prejudices are blinding you to progress?


Two simple questions. California embraces this "progress". Why do they pay crazy prices for energy if the cost of renewables is so competitive? Why are they always running out of power if renewables are so reliable?
 

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Two simple questions. California embraces this "progress". Why do they pay crazy prices for energy if the cost of renewables is so competitive? Why are they always running out of power if renewables are so reliable?

There you go again. Asking someone to present an official politically correct narrative in such a way that it actually makes sense. Probability of that happening is of course almost zero.

Of course if it did make any sense whatsoever, it would not be politically correct and CM and Freddie would have no choice but to declare it to be a conspiracy theory.:D
 

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Fusion Reactor Sets Record By Running for 20 Seconds

Most of the methods we currently use to produce power come with substantial drawbacks such as pollution or limited availability. Reliable fusion power could theoretically change all that. By harnessing the power of the sun, we could safely produce more power than ever before. The problem, however, is that fusion power generation doesn’t work yet.

A team from South Korea just made a major advancement — the Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research (KSTAR) device recently ran for 20 seconds. That might not sound impressive, but it doubles the previous record.



The sun and other stars produce energy through nuclear fusion — the process of sticking together two hydrogen atoms (and later heavier atoms) yields enormous energy, and the byproducts are entirely safe, unlike the leftovers from nuclear fission and combustion. However, fusion only takes place at extremely high temperatures and pressures. It’s not a self-sustaining chain reaction like fission.

KSTAR is one of the most advanced Tokamak-style reactors in the world. These devices use powerful magnetic fields to shape super-heated plasma into a torus (ring) shape. Currently, our ability to sustain artificial fusion reactions in this way is extremely limited. The best experimental reactors like KSTAR can only keep super-heated plasma active for a few seconds. The number of seconds is finally increasing, though.

 

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In other news, Texas is considering seeking relief from astronomical green electricity bills and widespread outages by embracing plentiful "alternative" fossil fuels available within state borders.
 
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