Category Archives: Coal

Do Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and the UK know what they have gotten into?


 

The Manhattan Contrarian posted “Looks Like Global Action On “Climate Change” Is Dead by Frances Menton.  There is not much in the posting that I have not already covered.  However, there are two things that do standout that I want to pass on. Menton’s posting is relative to the members of the G 20, that have just reaffirmed their support for the Paris Agreement in the Summary statement at the end of the G 20* meeting.  The US did not join in the reaffirmation.

Menton notes that Russia’s intended reduction is based upon their CO2 emissions in 1990 before they collapse in 1991 of the Soviet Union.

“Then they closed down all that inefficient Soviet industry.  According to a graph at Climate Action Tracker here, by 2000 their emissions were down by almost 40% from the 1990 level, and they have only crept up a little from there since.”

That was their ploy back in the days of the Kyoto Pact, too.

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Paris Agreement Doomed By Projected Coal Based Power Plants


The Global Warming Policy Forum (GWPF) posted “Forget Paris—1600 New Coal Power Plants Built Around The World.”  The GWPF provides the chart below that focuses on Europe, Asia and Africa using data from Coal Exit.com:


 

 

 

 

As you can see, China already has 2,363 coal based plants and expects to have 1,171more.  It comes as no surprise that China and India are major users of coal based power currently and they will be the major builders in the future.  No other country is even close.  It is illustrative to see that European nations are forecast to be increasing coal based capacity, not reducing it as their none too subtle “holier than thou” attitude would suggest.

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Why Did ExxonMobil Lobby To Stay In The Paris Agreement?


ExxonMobil lobbied President Trump to stay in the Paris Agreement. Can you figure out why that company would wish to do so?

Here are some pickings from the most recent ExxonMobil global energy forecast:

·         Total energy demand by 2040 will be 25% higher than in 2015.

·         Global energy supply in 2040 will be 55% from oil and natural gas. Wind, solar and biofuels will supply only 4% in 2040.

·         Coal use will decline but will still be the third largest supplier of global energy.

·         Global electrical energy demand for transportation will only be 2% of the total global energy demand in 2040.

·         Wind and solar electricity supplies will approach 15% of total electrical energy supply by 2040

·         Although utilization improves over time, intermittency limits worldwide wind and solar capacity utilization to 30% and 20% respectively.

·         By 2040 US and Europe combined CO2 emissions will be about 8 billion tonnes.  The total global emissions in 2040 will be about 36 billion tonnes,

·         Electric cars are a very high-cost option, at about $700/tonne of CO2 avoided.

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Media Ignorance Concerning The Paris Agreement


The ignorance shown by the media regarding the Paris Agreement leads me to wonder is it incompetence of just out-right lies.  The primary argument often is, quoting the editorial in the local newspaper, “By breaking ranks with nearly 200 nations, the United States joins only Syria (which is riven by civil war) and Nicaragua ….”  More on this paragraph below, but first about the 200 nations.  According to the Paris Agreement’s Green Climate Fund, the majority of the almost 200 nations are to be given money from this fund.  As of May 2017, 41 nations have contributed or have pledged money to this fund. Reviewing the data, we find that of the 41 nations, 22 of them are in for $10 million or less, 6 are in for $100 million or less, 7 are in for $500 million or less, 1 is in for $750million or less and 5 are in for more than $1billion with the US the major player at $3 billion. Beginning 2020,  the Green Climate Fund will require that the donor nations provide a total of  $100 billion per year! So what has been given so far is chump change.

Well, what do the other 160 nations have to lose by not joining?  Free money is what they will lose if they don’t sign up.  In fact, only about 13 countries are contributing any serious money. The nearly “200 nations” is a bogus issue.

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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

The Sad State Of The German Energy Program–By Fritz Vahrenholt


The following is from a posting by PowerEngineeringInternational titled “Vahrenholt rails against the ‘climate priests”.

PowerEngineeringInternation is pretty much into catastrophic man-made global warming (CAGW); but to their credit, they did capture most of the thought of Professor Fritz Vahrenholt on the sad state of the German energy program and the transition to renewables.  At the end of their posting, they list quotes by warmer scientists that provide their thoughts about what Prof. Vahrenholt said presumably to maintain PowerEngineeringIntenational in the good stead with the powers that be in CAGW.  It is instructive that they avoid actually challenging Vahrenholt’s points.  They revert to the “everybody knows the globe is warming” standby.

At a mid-January meeting in parliament buildings in London, Professor Fritz Vahrenholt provided a very detailed monologue on the motivations behind Germany’s energy transition, and why he feels it’s misguided and potentially disastrous.

Had the lecture been delivered by somebody from the coal power sector, they might have been written off as a ‘climate denier’, but given Vahrenholt’s background and pedigree as a backer of renewable energy, he is not so easily dismissed and his position must cause some unease for those so adamant that climate change is manmade.

It should give pause for thought too to the public at large. Governments and media around the world, not just in Germany, are convinced that man is responsible for the recently observed temperature rises and Polar ice cap reduction.

But Vahrenholt believes that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the main body from which the rest of the world takes its cue on such matters, is not approaching the problem with the correct scientific rigour.

The merits of the science aside, he takes most issue with the behaviour of his own country’s government for ‘trying to save the world.’

Germany has the second highest electricity prices in Europe, and in phasing out nuclear while stimulating over-production of renewables, it has reduced power prices to a pitiful extent, and ironically came to rely on coal. The last two factors mean the prospect of a lack of investment in the country’s future energy infrastructure, while targets for reducing CO2 look likely to be missed.

Much of Germany’s current problems arise from what he believes was an emotional reaction to the Fukushima disaster by Chancellor Angela Merkel – an order to accelerate the phasing out of a power source that had provided 30 per cent of the country’s electricity.

Vahrenholt says there is an endgame for the Energiewende, ‘though this reckless policy has worked until now’, referring to the German proverb ‘the donkey goes on to the ice until it breaks.’

“There will come a point when the rural population, or wildlife protection agencies, or a weakening economy or failures in the grid itself will force a return to conventional generation.”

He said one of the reasons the German population still backed the policy is because they are still relatively economically prosperous, with a weak euro and the work done by Merkel’s predecessor, Gerhard Schroeder, continuing to sustain the economy.

“The second reason it works is that energy intensive industries are exempted from the levy. They are profiting because of the overcapacity from renewables leading to sinking prices.”

Vahrenholt mocked the government’s current strategy of trebling wind farm capacity as the wind cannot be predicted and their output fluctuates enormously.

“Nil multiplied by x is still nil,” he said, while the price keeps mounting, and the carbon price remains too low to encourage carbon capture and storage at lignite plants which remain essential to fill the intermittency gaps, as gas-fired power plants are mothballed or closed completely.

He reserved his gravest criticism for the damage being wrought on the German countryside where the use of biofuels is having a bad impact. Pesticide use and monoculture has led to major declines in bird of prey numbers.

He calculated that to maintain the policy there would have to be a wind turbine ‘every 2.7km whether the landscape is lakes, wood or towns.’

A particularly acute sign of the failure of the policy is the current rate of progress and expense in bringing renewables from wind plants in the north to the south, where nuclear shutdowns are most keenly felt.

“6100 km cables are planned to be built but four years later only 80 km have been laid. Government has underestimated the resistance to the imposition of overhead power lines on this scale– so all plans have been torn up and they areof course also be added on to household bills.”

We are talking about DC cables which have never been built at this scale underground. In the best case scenario these cables will be laid five years after the nuclear shutdown.” now going underground at huge extra cost, which will

Re-dispatching of power is another feature of the new reality for the German electricity system. The grid operator would previously be called upon to interfere between power plants and customers once a day on average. This procedure now occurs 20 times a day, amounting to 6000 interventions a year in order to have guarantee system stability.

Because the merit order that facilitated market prices for power no longer works, thanks to the success of renewable energy, no new conventional power plants are being built. 69 power plants with a total capacity of 8000 MW are in the red as a result, as power plants are no longer profitable in the current scenario.

Due to a lack of supply in southern Germany the government was forced to intervene, creating a law whereby plants were only permitted to close by the grid agency with a minimum lead time of one year. These requests are being denied anyway, according to Vahrenholt, who very much paints a picture of a government making it all up on an ad-hoc basis.

“A term used in banking was system relevancy = the same term is now in use for power plants who are not allowed to close in Germany even on negative figures.”

“The owner of the plant receives only the operational cost,” Vahrenholt said, with obvious implications for investment in new plants.

Noting the latest figures showing a 2.5 per cent rise in CO2 in Germany last year, he also expressed doubt about the claims for storage (prohibitively expensive) and electro mobility (limited solution) as potential answers, making for a very dark narrative indeed.

To add more to an already gloomy picture, the professor said the Energiewende was creating an ‘ecological disaster’ through its assertiveness in building wind farms and biogas plants.

“Turning grassland into monoculture maize means deserts of maize replacing other food sources and ruining ecologies, a disaster for biodiversity. Birds of prey are also victims of the green religion. Take the lesser spotted eagle – there are only 100 braces left in Germany. The red kite lose 1000 each year due to wind turbines. The common buzzard is losing 11000 per year. The environment minister says the red kite could be gone by 2025.”

“The same problem exists for bats. Wind turbines are going into forests and other sensitive areas – because we want to save the world and destroy our nature.”

“In the transportation of equipment to the forest, paths are created and bats take that freeway and fly directly into turbines. They go through but their lungs are bursting and evolution has not prepared them so 240 000 bats are killed each year in Germany even though by law it is forbidden to kill a bat.”

He said the chance of a ‘policy correction’ would only happen under certain circumstances:
The average global temperature doesn’t rise as much as predicted
Loss of German competitiveness becomes acutely felt
or
the spoiling of the German landscape becomes a major political issue.

The glimmer of hope in Vahrenholt’s thinking is that future generations would have technology such as thorium reactors or nuclear fission that could save the day, but ‘it will take a long time to redress this misguided energy policy.

cbdakota

 

Drain The EPA Swamp-Part 6—Make EPA Perform Required Economic Assessments.


I am reblogging the PowerLIne posting “Federal Judge Denounces EPA As A Rogue Agency”. This is an important report  relating the failure of the EPA to conduct required economic evaluations of the potential loss or shifts of  which may result from the administration or enforcement  of provisions of the Clean Air Act.  EPA has not done this. US District Judge John Bailey says the law requires this and the EPA Administrator says it will take two years to come up with a system to do what the law requires.  The Judge tells the Administrator  “This response is wholly insufficient, unacceptable and unnecessary”. 

More evidence of the EPA acting on it own and not complying with the law.

cbdakota

From the PowerLIne website–“Federal Judge Denounces EPA as Rogue Agency”.  Click here to read the posting.

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