Category Archives: solar cells

Wind Energy Simply Won’t Work–Google Engineers Say

The following 6 postings discuss renewable wind energy (and some solar). The postings are ones that I think will interest the reader.  The publishing dates range from 2017 back to 2011.


Renewable energy ‘simply WON’T WORK’: Top Google engineers



James Delingpole Hammers the Great Wind Power Fraud: ‘Green Energy is a Charter For Crooks And Liars’            1/19/17



Benny Peiser: Europe Pulls The Plug On Its Green Future


Green Power Gridlock: Why Renewable Energy Is No Alternative    10dec13


The myth of renewable energy           22nov2011


Study: Wind & Solar up to 5X More Costly than Existing Coal and Nuclear    7/26/15



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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The Paris Agreement Road Map To Zero GHG Emissions–Next Post The Skeptics Response.

I do not think that the developed nations of the world are ready to endorse the actions they have signed onto when they authorized the Paris Agreement (PA).  They liked the applause they were receiving from the media and the environmentalists. But they have not responded in-kind to their commitments for reducing CO2 emissions or contributions to the fund that helps the underdeveloped nations. See here and here. Vox posting on 4 October 2016 said “No country on Earth is taking the 2ºC climate target seriously”.  The posted this quote: “Right now, with the policies governments have in place, we are heading to a warming of 3.6C said Prof Kornelis Blok of Ecofys.”The developed nations realize that it is time for them to “put up or shut up”. The “put up” part is bedeviled by the fact that most of them are finding that their renewable energy installations, eg solar and wind, are raising the cost of energy to a point where many can no longer afford it.  Further, they are learning that the renewables make their power systems unstable and thus vulnerable to loss of power to supply the customers and industries.

Maybe, just maybe they are becoming aware of the actions they need to undertake to keep the Global temperature rise at no more than the target of  1.5C.  The 24 March 2017 Science magazine published a study titled: “A roadmap for rapid decarbonization”.

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Planning CO2 Reductions Has Been Haphazard At Best–And Is It Really Needed?

My first venture into the study of global warming was as a researcher for a State Senator at a time when his State was considering a set of new laws to combat man made global warming. The laws were to be based upon a just published study that had been led by a Professor at the University.  The study was how the State should control emissions, improve energy efficiency and develop schemes to reduce energy consumption.  In many respects, energy efficiency, for example, had good programs. But its ideas for regulating and controlling energy in the name of global warming, was a reach too far in my thinking. 

In my reports to the Senator, I always requested that he try to make the study authors provide an end point and how they were going to get there. I know he tried to do this, but with no success. They would only say that it was necessary to prevent or stop man-made global warming.  It was obvious to me this would be an enormous task that might not be possible to accomplish.

I believed that the legislators should know what was needed to be done, how long it would take, and what would be the costs of these actions.  In my years in the business world, that information was a requirement if I expected to get the money needed to achieve some results at the end point. 

The Study was adopted and the over the years, coal plants have been shut down, subsidies paid to renewable energy producers, and the State eventually joined a cap and trade organization.

The public has been made to pay for some crony capitalism in the form of fuel cell production. More crony capitalism was in play when the State offered incentives in the form of loans to have in-state manufacturing of a hybrid plugin automobile named the Fisker Karma.  The project fell through because of battery fires and an incident of flooding followed by fires of Karmas when tropical storm Sandy hit a New Jersey Port.  The State got some of their money back. The big loser were the Feds who had loaned Fisker $529 million.  I believe that the Feds  only got back $25 million when it auctioned off Fisker to a Chinese company.

The State has installed a small number of wind turbines and solar cells.  Fortunately, their plan to set up the first East Coast Off Shore Wind Farm was aborted.

All of this has had no perceptible impact on the global climate nor will it ever.  It has made the State’s residential electric rates to the 14th highest in the contiguous US.  No long-term plan; no real vision of where the State was being led.

This story is a microcosm of what has happened globally.  The Paris Accord, that  Obama signed and provided $500 million in his last days in office, is clearly unworkable. As the dimensions of the required cuts in CO2 are at last becoming clear, the task is so enormous that it is almost beyond comprehension.  It will not be implemented as the task is so far from anything the human population will accept either financially or from the suffering it will cause.  And is it really necessary to cut CO2?   The next blog will look at what has been proposed as the action plan to prevent a  global temperature rise  of 2°C.


Renewable Energy Uses 100X Manpower Compared to Fossil Fuels

solar-panelsThe International Renewable Energy Agency of the US Bureau of Statistics provided employment data for three categories–Solar; Oil and Gas Extraction; and Coal Mining.  Bloomberg drew a chart of employment over the period of 2012 to 2015.  That chart is shown below:

Energy Jobs

Stanislav Jakuba looked at the employment in each of these three endeavours to compare electricity production versus manpower in his posting “Renewable Energy: High Jobs, Little Power (inefficiency personified”.  He offered this analysis:

Ever wondered why has our standard of living not been improving?

The upward-aiming line in the above chart indicates one reason: growing employment in the renewable-energy sector. That employment contributes a miniscule amount to power production, and it does so at a dreadfully high operating cost.

Here are the numbers.

As illustrated, 200,000 people work in the solar industry (Photo-voltaic and Concentrated Solar Power combined), and they enabled the generation of 3.0 GW in 2015, which comes to 15 kW per employee. The down-sloping lines, combined, represent the 400,000 employees in the fossil fuel industry.

Assuming that about a half of those are needed just to supply fuel to generate the 310 GW electricity reported for that year, then the remaining 200,000 employees were responsible for 1550 kW per employee.

In other words, one employee in the fossil fuel industry produces 1550 kW, while it takes 100 employees in the solar business to produce roughly that amount.

Solar is thus the most expensive source of electricity. Plus, its output varies daily, sometime randomly (because of clouds and storms) and always intermittently (because of nights). Its inexhaustibility parallels the abundance of nuclear fuel, but the latter provides cheap and steady electricity, as well as heat, and is no less “clean” than solar.

The true cost of renewable energy is presently covered by subsidies drawn from our taxes, from Government borrowing abroad, and from various fees attached to our monthly utility bills.”

Jakuba has some addition thoughts on this topic in his  posting which can be read by clicking here.

I keep reading that solar and wind are now competitive with natural gas and coal.  Show me the cost number when they remove all the subsidies and when they  include operating cost and investment for the backup fossil fuel generated power–because these renewables not reliable supplies.

I am not sure that I completely  agree with the comparison technique, but they do have one heck of a lot of manpower for such a puny output of electrical power.

The politicians said these renewable projects would create jobs.  They sure were right about that.  Although, it looks like they carried it too far.




John Kasich (modern day Don Quixote) Tilting At Windmills


The Ohio legislature passed a bill which allowed communities to make Ohio renewable energy standards optional.

The present standard calls on Ohio utilities to secure 12.5 percent of their power from renewable sources and increase their efficiency by 22.5 percent by 2025.

However, Governor John Kasich vetoed the bill saying he liked the idea of many fuel sources.

Renewables are still not competitive with natural gas and coal based electrical power.

Wow, and some people actually wanted to replace Donald Trump with John Kasich.  I believe the person that wanted that the most was Kasich.

The source of this posting is E&E News.



Pew Research Report Data Not Supported By The Interviews. Human Caused CO2 Claimed To Be 48% But In Reality Is 31%

Pew Research Center has just released a survey of American’s opinions about global warming. They interviewed about 1500 people over a period from 10 May to 6 June this year. There are many findings but the one I want to take issue with is their claim that about half of the American’s interviewed say Earth is warming due to human activity. From the Pew Research Center survey the chart displayed says that 48% believe Earth is warming because of human activity, 31% because of natural patterns and 20% say there is no solid evidence that Earth is getting warmer.


The Pew document presents the results of the interviews. The above conclusion was made from the following interviews:



Above is the first interview results. Only 26% said global warming is caused by human activity. Wow that would not do. I guess they were saying “how can we fix this. We can’t publish this.” So they came up with a plan.

Some of the interviewed said they were not sure or had no answer. So they decided to re-interview these people to see which of the three statements would be their second choice. Now there were 1534 interviewees in the beginning. Thus the “not sures” and the “no answers” would be 0.15X1534=230 people. In the next chart it appears that they only re-interviewed only 156 of the 230. Below are the results of the re-interview.


The results of the re-interview is that 29% said their second choice would be human caused warming, 20% said the warming was natural and 41% there was no evidence that the world is getting warmer.

Now comes the magic. You can see it in the bottom part of the above chart where it says the “combined responses” gave a new set of percentages for each of the three possible answers. However the answer for one of the three changed. It now includes both human caused and natural caused warming even though there still is a natural caused warming category.

I have gone through the math. The “human caused” in the first interview was 26% or 398 people. The “natural” was 45% or 690 people. “No evidence” was 14% or 215 people. As noted above the number re interviewed was 156 although the percentage would have called for 230. Note also that the percentage listed in the chart is only 90% or 140 people. The bottom line for people actually giving an opinion looks to be 1443 rather than the 1534 they began with. But the discrepancies in total number make little difference to the outcome. The human caused would be 398 original people plus 45 of the re interviewed for a total of 443 representing the share of the total 31%. Natural 690 plus 31 for a total of 721 and 50%. No evidence came in with 215 plus 64 for 279 and 19%. So only 31% said warming was human caused.

Obviously the surveyors could not let the initial result stand—–only 26% thought warming in human caused. So they came up with a way to obscure the results.

I have plowed through the rest of the interview material. It is obvious that most of the people have little concept of the issues surrounding renewable fuels/renewable energy.


Their level of the science knowledge is probably pretty well summed up by the interview question shown above where they were asked to name the major gas that makes up our atmosphere. Seventy-three per cent did not know the answer. I would hazard a guess that most of our politician would do no better on that question.

If you want to look in detail at the full report and the interviews click here and then click on “Complete Report PDf