Category Archives: Solar

Why solar power can’t save us from the coming energy crisis

Preface. Embedded within the posts below are many reasons why solar electricity can’t replace fossil fuels.  All solar and wind do is add to the giant fire of burning fossil fuels with just a tiny bit more power, about 4% … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, CSP with thermal energy storage, Solar, Solar EROI | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Pedro Prieto: many solar panels won’t last 25-30 years, EROI may be negative

Preface. Pedro Prieto and Charles Hall wrote the definitive book on the EROI of solar power, “Spain’s Photovoltaic Revolution. The Energy Return on Investment” and has built many commercial facilities himself and witnessed the failure of solar panels long before … Continue reading

Posted in Pedro Prieto, Photovoltaic Solar | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

Challenges to the Integration of Renewable Resources at High System Penetration

Preface.  This overview of challenges for wind and solar written in 2010 is still true today. We are far from being able to reach even a 50% renewable grid (excluding hydropower from the total) given the lack of storage, the … Continue reading

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Wind, solar, and natural gas are driving nuclear power out of business

Preface. I’m no fan of nuclear power because we may already be at peak uranium, there’s nowhere to store nuclear waste, and a spent nuclear pool fire could harm millions of people. But renewable wind and solar and natural gas … Continue reading

Posted in Nuclear Power, Solar, Wind | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Why Concentrated Solar Power is not a good choice for a 100% Renewable Energy System

Preface.  The authors conclude that: In light of the obtained results — a low capacity factor and Energy Returned on Invested, an intensive use of materials—some scarce, and the significant seasonal intermittence) — the potential contribution of current CSP technologies … Continue reading

Posted in Concentrated Solar Power | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

Solar PV requires too much land to replace fossils

Preface. This is a brief summary of the Capellan-Perez paper that calculates the land needed to use solar to replace electricity as well as the land needed if solar were to replace all of societies use of energy (i.e. transportation, … Continue reading

Posted in Solar | Tagged , , , , , | 9 Comments

Renewable EROI must include storage, low capacity factor, wide boundaries

[ Trainer argues that when you consider how the capacity factor of wind and solar are to fossil plants, seasonality of wind and solar the number of facilities is quite large to deal with the intermittency problem.  Therefore the storage … Continue reading

Posted in Solar, Solar EROI, Wind, Wind EROI | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Richard Heinberg: Paul Krugman’s Errors and Omissions

Preface. This article by Richard Heinberg at Postcarbon refutes a column by Paul Krugmen called “Errors and Emissions Could Fighting Global Warming Be Cheap and Free?” here.  Most of my friends and family think I’m nuts because articles like this … Continue reading

Posted in EROEI Energy Returned on Energy Invested, Richard Heinberg, Solar, Wind | Tagged , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Want to go off-grid? You might need hundreds of Tesla batteries

Preface. Although you may not be as far north as Victoria, British Columbia (48.4 latitude), you’d ideally want to be at 30 degrees or less latitude from the equator to even consider the expense of off-grid solar power.  And even … Continue reading

Posted in Batteries, Photovoltaic Solar | Tagged , , | 11 Comments

Why is nearly all solar power built where subsidies are the highest?

If solar net energy return is as high as some solar advocates claim, why does solar need any subsidies? And not just U.S. subsidies, it’s subsidies on top of subsidies when you add in that we’re buying Chinese government subsidized … Continue reading

Posted in Concentrated Solar Power, Energy Policy, Photovoltaic Solar, Solar EROI | Tagged , , , , , , | 9 Comments