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Re: Green walls of silence....comment by EP

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  • Pedro Prieto
    Eric: When you comment ...Wind farms,,, what is the actual output from them, against expected output, ie what is their cost and energy effectiveness? ... We
    Message 1 of 3 , Jul 1, 2009
      Eric:

      When you comment

      ...Wind farms,,, what is the actual output from them, against
      expected output, ie what is their cost and energy effectiveness?

      :::::::::::::::::::::

      We have already some information on energy output. In Spain is very precise. Wind farms supplied in 2008 exactly 31,355 GWh, which represented an 11% of the total national electricity consumption. And is growing, both because there are more installations in the way and also, in percentage, because the electricity consumption in 2009 is at present some 8% lower than in the equivalent period of 2008 and this is detracted basically from gas coal and fuel.

      What we do not know exactly (this is my research line for years) is the energy inputs to put all the wind parks in position and to operate them.

      Promoters swear that they recover the financial investment in few years, but because there is a premium tariff. And they always swear that the energy payback is just 2 to 5 years, something that I do not buy, because there are many hidden secondary and tertiary energy costs in this business.

      My feeling, with the lack of real data and the abundant biased data of the industry, is that they are close, at present to be COMERCIALLY competitive with the present tariffs and without subsidies, specially if the every time more scarce (in some countries) wind fields are optimal (over 3,000 hours/year nominal), but talking on monetary terms is something I dislike very much, because is deceitful.

      The wind power industry (without any doubt, a heavy and pollutant cement, concrete, steel, coper and glass fiber industry) claims that should the electric tariffs or other sources of energy, like oil, go up to certain levels, they will become fully competitive. And this is far from being true. Chicken and egg or circular arguments, because if oil goes up, transport, insurances, maintenance, row materials of this industry will also go up. And if electricity goes up in a given percentage, as we have seen in 2008, all other industrial sectors, specially those heavily based in electricity consumption (tiles for construction, steel, aluminum and other very dependent industries with low operating margins) may collapse or flee to another countries and then, the high entropy/high consumption society starts fading anyway.

      With all, in my opinion, the EROEI, being an important issue, is not the only bottleneck of the wind power systems.

      The main problem is that wind and solar are fully subsidized energy sources from fossil fuel societies. It is obvious that they will crumble in months if, for instance, oil just stops flowing to a given country, months or years beyond their oil strategic reserves are exhausted.

      These energies are heavily underpinned and tutelaged by a fossil fueled society. And are only possible, because a fossil fueled society is working round the clock in aspects always ignored by those calculating the EROEI's from the biased industry with money-to-energy deceptive and simplistic equivalences.

      How much is the energy embedded in sending by courier from the other side of the world a PCB with solid state power semiconductors to repair the electronics of a nacelle, in a broken wind generator? Would it be possible a wind field in Nicaragua, if these systems will not operate? How much of the airline world fleet at the disposal of the wind energy industry should be charged to the energy embedded in the wind park, if to maintain it needs lots of trips (people and cargo), flying regularly? Would they work if cranes or long trucks are not fed with oil derivates?

      The 12,000 MToes society is VITAL for these systems to work. If the fossil fuel society collapses, these systems will undoubtedly collapse immediately. If base load plants (usually coal and nuclear in some countries) stop working, for whatever the reason (and there are many in the horizon), these intermitent systems will not be able, regardless of their penetration (being the highest Denmark with a 20%), to take over the electric network.

      So, the EROEI is secondary to the aspect that these systems are only operative if fully UNDERPINNED and TUTELAGED by a society whose power systems are intending to replace in time and volume. Chicken and egg.

      Even knowing that fossil fuel systems are depleting and going down soon in the right side of the Hubbert curve, we can not continue lying ourselves, making ourselves tricks palying solitaire, by declaring that wind and solar PV systems, babies already 50 years old and still breastfed by mom oil (with subsidies, premium tariffs, tax exemption or holidays, etc.) still need another 50 years lactancy, to become adults and self sufficient. And at the same time lying ourselves insulting mom oil and accusing her that she was preventing the babies from becoming adults, for her own interest.

      Mom oil never said that about granma coal. And granma coal never accused gran-grandmas wood and biomass of doing something similar.

      Those vicious babies will never become adults, in the sense as mom oil was, in her heights/peak of activity, displacing 4,000 MToes/year for herself and helping grandma coal, cousing nuclear, ant hydro, and uncle biomass to complete a displacement of 12,000 MToes/year. These wind and solar babies will die if mom oil moves away her already drying breasts.

      Let us face it and think on how to organize the powerdown in the best possible way, without depositing false hopes in these vicious babies to give us any comfort in the coming years.

      Pedro from Madrid
    • Eric Pfeiffer
      Power down. Yes, it is inevitable. Thanks for the detailed reply. I wonder whether the new electric cars push is little more than small companies grabbing
      Message 2 of 3 , Jul 1, 2009
        Power down. Yes, it is inevitable. Thanks for the detailed reply.
        I wonder whether the "new electric cars" push is little more than
        small companies grabbing cash from the US govt while cash
        is flowing rather than viable product innovation. The cellulosic
        ethanol plant story was a huge wakeup to me when plant
        construction was announced, grants received, and then the
        plants were never built.  Now I insist on prying open the green
        proclimations to find actual substance. Do we have something
        viable or just another bubble to pop? Are we devising for the future
        or just creating hype for today?

        --- On Wed, 7/1/09, Pedro Prieto <papp20032000@...> wrote:


        From: Pedro Prieto <papp20032000@...>
        Subject: [energyresources] Re: Green walls of silence....comment by EP
        To: energyresources@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Wednesday, July 1, 2009, 4:31 AM








        Eric:

        When you comment

        ...Wind farms,,, what is the actual output from them, against
        expected output, ie what is their cost and energy effectiveness?

        :::::::::::: :::::::::

        We have already some information on energy output. In Spain is very precise. Wind farms supplied in 2008 exactly 31,355 GWh, which represented an 11% of the total national electricity consumption. And is growing, both because there are more installations in the way and also, in percentage, because the electricity consumption in 2009 is at present some 8% lower than in the equivalent period of 2008 and this is detracted basically from gas coal and fuel.

        What we do not know exactly (this is my research line for years) is the energy inputs to put all the wind parks in position and to operate them.

        Promoters swear that they recover the financial investment in few years, but because there is a premium tariff. And they always swear that the energy payback is just 2 to 5 years, something that I do not buy, because there are many hidden secondary and tertiary energy costs in this business.

        My feeling, with the lack of real data and the abundant biased data of the industry, is that they are close, at present to be COMERCIALLY competitive with the present tariffs and without subsidies, specially if the every time more scarce (in some countries) wind fields are optimal (over 3,000 hours/year nominal), but talking on monetary terms is something I dislike very much, because is deceitful.

        The wind power industry (without any doubt, a heavy and pollutant cement, concrete, steel, coper and glass fiber industry) claims that should the electric tariffs or other sources of energy, like oil, go up to certain levels, they will become fully competitive. And this is far from being true. Chicken and egg or circular arguments, because if oil goes up, transport, insurances, maintenance, row materials of this industry will also go up. And if electricity goes up in a given percentage, as we have seen in 2008, all other industrial sectors, specially those heavily based in electricity consumption (tiles for construction, steel, aluminum and other very dependent industries with low operating margins) may collapse or flee to another countries and then, the high entropy/high consumption society starts fading anyway.

        With all, in my opinion, the EROEI, being an important issue, is not the only bottleneck of the wind power systems.

        The main problem is that wind and solar are fully subsidized energy sources from fossil fuel societies. It is obvious that they will crumble in months if, for instance, oil just stops flowing to a given country, months or years beyond their oil strategic reserves are exhausted.

        These energies are heavily underpinned and tutelaged by a fossil fueled society. And are only possible, because a fossil fueled society is working round the clock in aspects always ignored by those calculating the EROEI's from the biased industry with money-to-energy deceptive and simplistic equivalences.

        How much is the energy embedded in sending by courier from the other side of the world a PCB with solid state power semiconductors to repair the electronics of a nacelle, in a broken wind generator? Would it be possible a wind field in Nicaragua, if these systems will not operate? How much of the airline world fleet at the disposal of the wind energy industry should be charged to the energy embedded in the wind park, if to maintain it needs lots of trips (people and cargo), flying regularly? Would they work if cranes or long trucks are not fed with oil derivates?

        The 12,000 MToes society is VITAL for these systems to work. If the fossil fuel society collapses, these systems will undoubtedly collapse immediately. If base load plants (usually coal and nuclear in some countries) stop working, for whatever the reason (and there are many in the horizon), these intermitent systems will not be able, regardless of their penetration (being the highest Denmark with a 20%), to take over the electric network.

        So, the EROEI is secondary to the aspect that these systems are only operative if fully UNDERPINNED and TUTELAGED by a society whose power systems are intending to replace in time and volume. Chicken and egg.

        Even knowing that fossil fuel systems are depleting and going down soon in the right side of the Hubbert curve, we can not continue lying ourselves, making ourselves tricks palying solitaire, by declaring that wind and solar PV systems, babies already 50 years old and still breastfed by mom oil (with subsidies, premium tariffs, tax exemption or holidays, etc.) still need another 50 years lactancy, to become adults and self sufficient. And at the same time lying ourselves insulting mom oil and accusing her that she was preventing the babies from becoming adults, for her own interest.

        Mom oil never said that about granma coal. And granma coal never accused gran-grandmas wood and biomass of doing something similar.

        Those vicious babies will never become adults, in the sense as mom oil was, in her heights/peak of activity, displacing 4,000 MToes/year for herself and helping grandma coal, cousing nuclear, ant hydro, and uncle biomass to complete a displacement of 12,000 MToes/year. These wind and solar babies will die if mom oil moves away her already drying breasts.

        Let us face it and think on how to organize the powerdown in the best possible way, without depositing false hopes in these vicious babies to give us any comfort in the coming years.

        Pedro from Madrid



















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