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Peeling Away the Onion of Denmark Wind (Part IV – CO2 Emissions)

By Kent Hawkins -- October 29, 2010

[Editor’s note: Parts I-III provided insight into the complexities involved in any analysis of the Danish electricity system, showing (1) how unique the Denmark situation is, (2) that the details of electricity exports and imports must be understood for each of Denmark’s trading partners, (3) the likelihood that most of Denmark’s wind production is exported, and (4) an indication that the upper limit for manageable wind penetration is in the mid-single digits as a percent of domestic demand. Part IV now looks at the impact on CO2 emissions.]

Figure 1 is a simple look at CO2 emissions and wind electricity production, which explains the claims made by wind proponents based on a superficial examination of the information. Figure 1 shows what the Danish Energy Agency (DEA) reports based on an “adjustment” of actual CO2 emissions.…

Peeling Away the Onion of Denmark Wind (Part I)

By Kent Hawkins -- October 26, 2010

[Editor’s note: This series is an extensive technical analysis of wind electricity in Denmark. The intent is to develop: (1) plausible conclusions without resorting to extensive mathematics (except that provided by others) , and (2) a framework within which to evaluate other claims of emissions relating to wind backup from fossil plants.]

According to wind proponents, Denmark is a model of wind energy use for electricity generation to be emulated. It is claimed or suggested that:

  • Denmark gets about 20% of its electricity from wind. [Note: This number is generation, not usage, which is a crucial distinction with negative implications for the wind lobby’s argument.]
  • Reduction in CO2 emissions is due in large part to increased wind electricity production.

These conclusions are superficial at best and invalid at worse.…