Turbine shutdowns in polar vortex stoke debate

EXCERPTS: That dip in wind output during last month’s deep freeze is now fueling debate about the nation’s embrace of renewable energy. The polar vortex arrived as calls grew on the left for a “Green New Deal” to transition to renewables and tackle the threat of climate change, all while various state-level proposals to increase renewable energy penetration circulated across the country.

It was also fresh ammunition for a fossil industry and other critics of renewable energy mandates that have long sowed doubts about the ability to maintain reliability on a grid growing increasingly dependent on intermittent energy sources............................wind farms went from a power producer to a 2-MW load on its system because they required heat to avoid being damaged....................Extreme cold takes a toll on various parts of a turbine, from electrical cabinets to the gearbox, the generator, lubricants and steel components, which can become brittle if the temperature goes low enough...............................“Historically, the really cold weather comes with a decline in wind speeds,” he said. “When you get that low, you don’t get that much wind, normally.”.....................The lights stayed on “only because of fossil fuel power plants that could be called upon and dispatched,” he said....................................

Wade Schauer, research director for Americas power and renewables research at Wood Mackenzie, noted that it gets “exponentially” harder economically to justify renewable penetration beyond 50 percent, including hydroelectricity, because of an increase in curtailments during periods of overproduction and because of a need for dispatchable power.

“You can keep building more, but you still need more backup generation to be there on days like these during the polar vortex,” he said...........................................

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Comment by Eskutassis on March 5, 2019 at 11:21am

Another of the green energy themes is something I have been pounding on for years, and that is the Ethanol standards for transportation fuels. It is a boon for the farmers because it props up their corn production, but makes our corn and feed prices very high. It also takes a huge amount of coal, gas or oil to boil the vats to make the alcohol. It does NOT make our vehicles run cleaner, in fact it harms their fuel systems especially in small engines. 

The "Green New Deal" is not a deal at all, rather a very, and I mean VERY, costly method to cripple our economy and make America subservient to every other nation in the world that does NOT do what we are doing.  Do we really think China, India, Russia (living economically now purely on natural gas) or any of the other developing countries are going to follow our lead? And when our $Dollar$ collapses, will any of the others not take advantage? I think not.

Comment by arthur qwenk on March 4, 2019 at 4:30pm

Just the  basic science of thermodynamics, conservation of energy rules .A barrel of (dense) oil has much more quick dispatchable  energy than air movement over an acre, or sun shining on a given area . Non-dense sources (sun and wind) cannot replace the dense ones, ever. They are intermittent, always.. Play all you want , dream all you want, rationalize all you want, intermittent non-dense generators can never replace dense ones and maintain modernity. 

But, "Stupid is as Stupid Does". Intermittent non-dense renewables cannot replace dense fuel sources,ever, no matter how much money you throw at the "Green Dream" ideology.

Nuke up, frack on....Dense fuels rule until a new breakthrough (fusion?) evolves in the future.

Comment by Marshall Rosenthal on March 4, 2019 at 1:47pm

It's more than frustrating to see this country endorsing the "renewable energy only" kick. You know, Mark Twain once said: IT IS EASY TO FOOL PEOPLE, BUT IT IS VERY DIFFICULT TO CONVINCE THEM THAT THEY HAVE BEEN FOOLED. I think he knew what he was talking about.

Comment by Penny Gray on March 4, 2019 at 12:51pm

Too cold, no TV.  Too much wind, no TV.  Not enough wind, no TV.  No battery storage, no TV.  This message brought to you courtesy of "GreenNewDeal Wind Turbines".  Support your local library.

Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."



Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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