Monthly Archives: February 2015

Wind turbines hit limits to growth before 50% wind power penetration

Material requirements of 50% wind power in the USA hit limits to growth Also see: Davidsson, S., et al. 2014. Growth curves and sustained commissioning modelling of renewable energy Investigating resource constraints for wind energy. Energy Policy. Fizaine, F., et … Continue reading

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Wind’s dirty secret: it goes on vacation in the summer and year-round in the South East

  Figure 1. Summer wind across the USA is barely to not economically viable Class 3 (light blue), or not at all economically viable Class 2 (orange) and class 1 (blank) (NREL), with very limited darker blue (class 4) and … Continue reading

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Wind power capacity value — effective load carrying capability (ELCC)

NREL. 2008. Determining the Capacity Value of Wind: An Updated Survey of Methods and Implementation. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Electric systems must have sufficient reserves so that resources are adequate to meet customer demand. Because electricity demand cannot be known … Continue reading

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Is there enough renewable energy to replace fossil fuel electricity generation?

NREL. July 2012. U.S. Renewable Energy Technical Potentials: A GIS-Based Analysis. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. This document is a thought experiment that uses GIS mapping to estimate how much renewable power could possibly be generated in each state regardless of … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Concentrated Solar Power, Photovoltaic Solar, Renewable Integration, Wind | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

Drawbacks of a distributed generation electric grid

Gardiner, B. October 8, 2013. Bypassing the Power Grid. New York Times. Small, decentralized generators are mostly inefficient, costing far more per unit of output than conventional power or even utility-scale renewable energy, like big solar farms.  Making haphazard changes … Continue reading

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Peter Dykstra: Last Tango for Nuclear?

Dykstra, Peter.  Feb 4, 2015. Last Tango for Nuclear? energycollective. There is some promise for nuclear: Projects in Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee may yield the first new nuclear plants in decades.  But these new nukes are falling behind schedule … Continue reading

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Robert Hirsch on the Saudis and repercussions of low oil prices

Commentary: Déjà Vu With a Twist? By Robert L. Hirsch, Feb 2, 2015, ASPO USA Peak Oil Review. The recent world oil supply/price decline situation looks very much like what happened in 1985-86, when the Saudis dramatically increased oil production, … Continue reading

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Big Gap between What Scientists Say and Americans Think about Climate Change

Big Gap between What Scientists Say and Americans Think about Climate Change January 30, 2015. By Gayathri Vaidyanathan and ClimateWire On controversial topics such as climate change, a significant number of Americans do not use science to inform their views. Instead, … Continue reading

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Hydrogen production would use WAAAAAAAAAY too much water

[This is one of many reasons I call hydrogen “not worth the ink”] Webber, M.E. 2007. The Water Intensity of the Transitional Hydrogen Economy. Environmental Research Letters 2.  Conclusions Hydrogen production using thermoelectric powered electrolysis is significantly more water intensive … Continue reading

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Michael Webber on Energy + Water + Food interdependency

Webber, Michael E. February 2015. Our future rides on our ability to integrate Energy + Water + Food. Scientific American. Michael E. Webber is deputy director of the Energy Institute at the University of Texas at Austin. His Yale University … Continue reading

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