Category Archives: Batteries

Batteries May Not Solve Renewable Energy Non-Dispatchable Problem


The greens believe that solar and wind farms will be the way to eliminate the use of fossil fuels.  The reality of today’s solar and wind farms is that these sources are unable to be worked into the grid because of their unreliability. It is necessary to install natural gas powered turbines or diesel power generation along with the solar and wind farms. The fossil fuel units are required to generate electricity to balance the power grid when the sun is not shining and the wind is not blowing.

The greens’ solution is a battery system that stores enough energy to eliminate the need for fossil fueled energy backup systems.  Much research effort is underway to develop a battery to accomplish this objective. To date nothing stands out as a likely candidate for the job. 

But even if a battery that can do the job and does not cost too much emerges, there is another problem.   That problem regarding solar farms is discussed in an American Thinker posting by Viv Forbes titled “Batteries: Another green scam”.  The following is from that posting: 

The idea of producing reliable grid power from intermittent green energy backed up by batteries looks possible in green doodle-diagrams, but it would be absurdly inefficient and expensive.

Solar works a six-hour day

Consider a solar panel rated to collect, say, 100 units of energy per day at full capacity, in full mid-day sunlight, with a clean panel, properly aligned to face the sun.

No solar energy arrives overnight, and only minimal amounts arrive during the three hours after dawn or before dusk.  That means that solar energy can be collected for only about six hours per day, providing it is not cloudy, raining, or snowing.  No amount of research or regulation will change this.  The solar energy union works only a six-hour day and takes quite a few sickies.  So instead of feeding 100 units of energy per day into the grid, at best, the panel supplies just 25 units.

Can the addition of batteries give us 24/7 power from solar?

To deliver 100 units of energy in 24 hours will require an extra 75 units of energy to be collected, stored, and delivered by the batteries every sunny day.  This will require another three solar units devoted solely to recharging batteries in just six sunny hours.

Cloudy and wet days are what really expose the problems of solar plus batteries.  (This is why isolated green power systems must have a diesel generator in the shed.)

To insure against, say, seven days of cloudy weather would require a solar-battery system capable of collecting and storing 700 units of energy while still delivering 100 units to consumers every day.  However, if several consecutive weeks of sunny weather then occur, this bloated system is capable of delivering seven times more power than needed, causing power prices to plunge, driving reliable generators out of business, and wasting the life of solar panels producing unwanted electricity.

Solar energy obviously does best in sunny equatorial deserts, but that is not where most people live.  And the huge Desertec Solar Power Dream for the northern Sahara has failed.

cbdakota

Friends Of Science Engineering Critique Of WWS’s Plan For Global Decarbonization


The previous posting, examined the study “A roadmap for rapid decarbonization” published in the Science magazine,  and discussed the major obstacles the warmers face in their attempt to persuade the politicians and the voters to undertake decarbonization.  And do it rapidly.   You may not think thirty years is rapid, but convincing 8 billion people to wipe out the present infrastructure and substitute a new one using as yet unproven methods in 30 years, is moving at a breathtaking speed.

The above noted study, is not the only one that has looked at a way to satisfy the Paris Agreement of holding the global temperature to max.2 ºC rise, with a goal of 1.5ºC rise.  A study by 100% Clean and Renewable Wind, Water and Sunlight (WWS) led by Jacobson, Delucci , et at. is, on the surface (number of pages of detailed discussion), more elaborate than the previous posting.  This  WWS roadmap calls for an 80% reduction of fossil fuels by 2030!  Only 13 years away.

The WWS study is an all-sector roadmap that is said to show how 139 nations could jointly hold the temperature rise to no more than 2ºC.

Friends of Science critique the WWS study with a response titled “WHY RENEWABLE ENERGY CANNOT REPLACE FOSSIL FUELS BY 2050” .  Michael Kelly, Professor of Electrical Engineering at Cambridge says: “Humanity is owed a serious investigation of how we have gone so far with the decarbonization project without a serious challenge in terms of engineering reality”.

That’s what guides this critique.  The critique illustrates the enormous number of new renewable facilities needed, the time necessary to put  these facilities in to operation and the amount of space they require.  It is awesome.

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Dr. Judith Curry Believes the RoadMap to Zero CO2 Emissions Is Infeasible.


 

 

I have promised some critical views from skeptics regarding the Paris Agreement Roadmap to zero CO2 emissions by 2050.  If you need to get up to speed regarding  the Paris Agreement Roadmap,  please review my last two postings. 

Let’s begin with Judith Curry’s thoughts on this topic from her posting of 25 March titled A roadmap for meeting Paris emissions reductions goals”.

JC reflections

Apart from the issues raised in this paper, there are several other elephants in this room:  there is growing evidence of much smaller climate sensitivity to CO2; and even if these drastic emissions reductions occurred, we would see little impact on the climate in the 21st century (even if you believe the climate models).

I think that what this paper has done is important:  laying out what it would actually take to make such drastic emissions reductions.  Even if we solve the electric power problem, there is still the problem of transportation, not to mention land use.  Even if all this was technically possible, the cost would almost certainly be infeasible.

As Oliver Geden states, its time to ask policy makers whether they are going to attempt do this or not.  It seems rather futile to make token emissions reductions at substantial cost.

Deciding that all this is impractical or infeasible seems like a rational response to me.  The feasible responses are going with nuclear power or undertaking a massive R&D effort to develop new emission free energy technologies.  Independent of all this, we can reduce vulnerability from extreme weather events (whether or not they are exacerbated by AGW) and the slow creep of sea level rise.

 

Dr. Curry’s remarks are very succinct.  To be a success, the roadmap requires many inventions that to date have been sought after but not delivered.  And she points out, as noted in this blog on a number of occasions, the climate sensitivity used by the warmers gives temperature increases that are unsupportable.  This roadmap is necessary in large part because it is predicated on those exaggerated temperatures the climate models produce.  That is Dr. Curry’s “elephants in the room.”

And she thinks it is way too costly.  I believe she is spot on.

Dr. Currys posting can be accessed this link https://judithcurry.com/2017/03/25/a-roadmap-for-meeting-paris-emissions-reductions-goals/

Some additional comments to follow in the next posting.

cbdakota

Some EV Sales Improvement, But Still Way Below Obama Forecast


ev-for-postingHave you been keeping up with the car buying public’s interest in electric vehicles (EV)? The many models of EVs that are on the market are quite astonishing.  Nearly all the manufacturers have a model or two.  The sales are still well below the Obama Administrations projections.  But 2016 brought some joy to the makers of plug-in EVs.

Probably most of you that are reading this know about the different versions on the market, but for those that have not been following EVs closely, let me give you some guidance.

The Toyota Prius has been the sales leader. Later on, the Chevy Volt and the Nissan Leaf came on the scene but they have not equaled the Prius sales volume.  Those three vehicles represent the three major categories of EVs.

The Hybrid (HEV) is a vehicle that has both batteries and an internal combustion (IC) or diesel, fossil fuel powered motor to propel the vehicle. The batteries are not charged by an external plug-in arrangement but are charged by the onboard motor. The Prius is a HEV

The PHEV has both a IC or diesel motor and batteries, but in this category the batteries are charged by plugging into an external power supply.     The Chevy Volt is a PHEV.

The BEV vehicle has only batteries for motive power and those batteries are charged from an external power supply.  The Nissan Leaf is a representative of this category as are the Tesla and the GM Bolt.

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Tom Steyer Will Give Money To Any Politicians Promising To Push For A 50% Clean-Energy Economy by 2030.


Tom Steyer, the billionaire climate-change activist, wants to push the U.S, into a windmillfireimage4250/50 split of “clean energy with fossil fuel energy by 2030 and 100% by 2050. To accomplish his objective he promises to give money to any politician that promises to act on Steyer’s behalf.

This is not his first dip into the pool of buying politicians. He spent $73 million trying to get Democrat candidates elected in last year’s mid-term election.   His investment was almost a total loss. He was the biggest funder that year. The following data comes from a table used in the Sunlight Foundation’s posting “The Political One Percent of the One Percent: Megadonors fuel rising cost of elections in 2014”. Copying a saying that Glen Beck used to use, WARNING, warmers should wrap their heads with duct tape before they look at the list.

Rank Name Election Expenditures
1 Steyer, Tom $73,884.467
2 Bloomberg, Michael $28,474,729
3 Singer, Paul $11.193,474
4 Mercer, Robert $9,501,999
5 Eychaner, Fred $8,679,400
6 Simons, James $7,439,300
7 Ricketts, John Joe $6,168,273
8 Adelson, Sheldon $5,815,118
9 Koch, Charles $5,176,400

 

Charles Koch (I probably need to say THE EVIL CHARLES KOCH or they will not recognize the name) came in 9th, way below Steyer who dominated everyone with $73million. He was not even followed closely by No. 2, Michael Bloomberg, also a contributor to Democrats.

The concept of clean energy reaching half share or complete dominance is delusional in that time frame.

In the realm of vastly wealthy men, Bill Gates tops them all. From a June 25, 2015, posting by the Washington Times “Multibillionaire Bill Gates rejects calls to divest from fossil fuels” here is what Gates has to say about this:

“I don’t see a direct path between divesting and solving climate change,” Mr. Gates said, as reported in the Financial Times. “I think it’s wonderful that students care and now the Pope cares. But that energy of caring, I think you need to direct it towards something that solves the problem.”

But Mr. Gates told the Financial Times that the focus should be on increasing research and development in renewables, saying that the current technology could only reduce carbon dioxide emissions at a “beyond astronomical” cost.

“There’s no battery technology that’s even close to allowing us to take all of our energy from renewables and be able to use battery storage in order to deal not only with the 24-hour cycle but also with long periods of time where it’s cloudy and you don’t have sun or you don’t have wind,” Mr. Gates said.

“Power is about reliability. We need to get something that works reliably,” he said.

Gates is a man who has made his fortune dealing with electronics and science.

Steyer’s backgound is as a coal hedge funds manager. Is he is trying to atone for his “sin” of making billions from coal?

cbdakota

 

 

 

Electric Vehicles And Hybrid Sales At Lowest Level Since 2011


These are troubling times for the electric vehicle (EV) and the hybrid (EHV) sales. The first 3 months of 2015 experienced lower sales than in the year 2011 which was the first full year of sales for the Chevy Volt (EVH) and the Nissan Leaf (EV).   Even though the buyer of a new EV or new EVH is still geting a $7500 tax credit, manufacturers are having to cut China Electric Car Bluesprices because the dealer’s inventories are building up. The low price of gasoline and the questions about electric vehicles durability are major reasons for this situation.  But there is another reason that is playing a big part in this problem.   A posting on Detroitnews.com titled “Electric vehicles lose buzz” talks about the issue of leasing:

“Edmunds.com reports that leases comprised nearly seven of every 10 plug-in cars that drove off dealer lots from January through March.

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We Are Not Ready For EVs


evpluginUnknownWired has a posting titled “A Two-Day Battle to Charge My Car Convinced Me We’re Not Ready for EVs” by Alex Davies. Davies relates that he borrowed a Nisan Leaf for a test run. He planed to make a trip from San Francisco to Mountain Valley, California for a meeting. The distance from his apartment to the meeting is 35 miles. The mileage available meter on the Leaf indicates its range at the current charge was 50 miles. The trip to the meeting was uneventful. The problems begin when he knows that the battery charge is not sufficient to get him back to his apartment. What follows was several hours getting the Leaf charged.

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