Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Renewable Energy Increases Greenhouse Gases

It may be years late, but the New York Times finally features an article admitting "How Renewable Energy Is Blowing Climate Change Efforts Off Course", something that has been clear for quite some time for anyone acquainted with the technological and economic aspects of renewables and other sources of energy, regardless of your views about the science around climate change.  For more on the basic math of global greenhouse emissions read this THC post, including the embedded link.

What's happened is that government subsidies for solar and wind power have created a perfect trifecta; (1) significantly increasing electricity costs for consumers; (2) pushing the main source of zero-carbon baseline electricity supply, nuclear power, into uneconomic operation and (3) causing instability in the electrical grid because of the power surges from its variable power generation.

The article quotes an analysis from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, estimating that in the United States:
nuclear reactors that produce 56 percent of the country’s nuclear power would be unprofitable over the next three years. If they were all to go under and be replaced with gas-fired generators, an additional 200 million tons of carbon dioxide would be spewed into the atmosphere every year.
The article goes on to note that "In Germany, where renewables have mostly replaced nuclear power, carbon emissions are rising, even as Germans pay the most expensive electricity rates in Europe."

You can also learn about the "duck curve" which explains the long term problem places like California are creating for themselves with high renewable mandates.  You can read a detailed description here.

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