A Free-Market Energy Blog


Posts from December 0

Wind Integration vs. Air Emission Reductions: A Primer for Policymakers

By Mary Hutzler -- June 24, 2010

Many claim that wind generation is beneficial because it reduces pollution emissions and does not emit carbon dioxide.  This isn’t necessarily the case. The following article explains a phenomena called cycling where the introduction of wind power into a generation system that uses carbon technologies to back-up the wind  actually reduces the energy efficiency of the carbon technologies. Recent studies  with actual data have estimated the impact of cycling on air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions.

Energy modelers evaluating the impact of legislation such as Senator Bingaman’s American Clean Energy Leadership Act and the American Power Act proposed by Senators Kerry and Lieberman should take note for their models most likely are underestimating the cost of compliance by incorrectly modeling the integration of wind power into the electricity grid.

Wind is not a new technology.…

Texas Wind Power: Reality vs. Hype (despite burdensome state mandate, only a 1.2% share projected for 2014)

By Robert Bryce -- August 24, 2009

“The first great requisite of motive power is, that it shall be wholly at our command, to be exerted when, and where, and in what degree we desire. The wind, for instance, as a direct motive power, is wholly inapplicable to a system of machine labour, for during a calm season the whole business of the country would be thrown out of gear.”

– William Stanley Jevons,  The Coal Question (1865), p. 122.

Texas has repeatedly been lauded as a leader in wind power development. Some of that attention is deserved. In 2008, the state installed nearly 2,700 megawatts of new wind capacity. If Texas were an independent country, it would rank 6th in the world in terms of total wind power production capacity. But such growth is not the result of the free-market energy choices.…