A Free-Market Energy Blog


Posts from December 0

Energy Strategy: Begin with Density

By Jerry Graf -- August 21, 2013

“In this century the bulk of humanity will live in large densely populated cities. If the citizens of of these cities are to attain a high quality of life they will require large centralised energy generation. This is not a matter of ideological preference, but of engineering reality.”

– Robert Wilson, The Future of Energy: Why Power Density Matters, Energy Collective, August 8, 2013.

“There is no doubt that we in the United States need to alter our energy strategy. The question is how we will change it. A rational energy strategy must be determined by scientific evaluation of fact and logical analysis of performance and economics–not by emotion, political considerations, and ‘feel good’ methodologies.”

– Jerry Graf (below)

Other than the damage to the economy from the waste itself, the real problem with mandating and subsidizing non-viable energy technology projects is that this distracts us and diverts resources from other efforts to improve our energy production strategy.…

Windpower Case Study in Ontario (Part 2: Adverse impacts on nuclear plants and general health)

By William Palmer -- March 1, 2012

[Editor’s note: Part 1 of this case study addressed the false claim that wind has any appreciable impact on reducing coal-fired generation. This part focuses on the little known considerations relating to the effect on nuclear plants that must be cycled to balance wind, which counters claims that wind power improves general health.]

“Excessive baseload generation largely due to a contractual requirement to buy all available wind output might make it look like wind is supplying an increasing fraction of the energy supply (in TWh), while the nuclear supply appears to be decreasing. But in reality, the reduction in Bruce B unit output to permit this fallacy cannot be justified economically, nor is it a wise and conservative operation of a nuclear station.”

The following eight charts extracted from the Sygration website, which allows plotting of the Ontario IESO electrical generating unit performance, demonstrate that not only are wind turbines ineffective to replace coal, in actual fact, they do considerable harm to the stability of the electrical supply, and increase the risk of upset and accident at a nuclear generating station.…

Windpower Case Study in Ontario (Part 1: Coal-fired generation not displaced)

By William Palmer -- February 29, 2012

[Editor Note: This case study of Ontario, Canada (one of the least emissions-producing electricity systems in the world) by a veteran energy engineer uses available data to shed light on unfounded claims about industrial wind turbines. Some aspects of the Ontario situation are unique, but many considerations are applicable to all countries/states/provinces. Part II concludes this case study tomorrow.]

“Even while wind was at peak operation, the coal generators served as backup (at low load) to be able to respond rapidly to the anticipated, and actual, drop in wind output that occurred just hours later.”

It has been claimed that industrial wind turbines allow Ontario to shut down coal-fired electrical generating stations. But the facts reveal this to be a myth.

The following graph shows how Ontario has generated its electricity from 1988 to 2011.…

Industrial Wind Power: An Old, Tried Failure (the intermittency curse then and now)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- December 29, 2009

New Zealand Windpower: Great Winds, Bad Electricity

By Bryan Leland -- June 6, 2009