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In the Wake of the News

Head-On Collision - ORIGINAL CONTENT

The US energy industry is subject to intense regulation and oversight at both the federal and state levels. Federal regulation is provided by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). National oversight of the electric energy industry is provided by the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), which is itself overseen by FERC. State regulation is provided by individual state utility commissions, which share information through the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC). State oversight is provided by individual state consumer advocates or consumer counsels, which share information through the National Association of State Utility Consumer Advocates (NASUCA).

While each of these agencies and organizations has its own unique mission, their missions share several common elements.

FERC: FERC's Mission: Assist consumers in obtaining reliable, safe, secure, and economically efficient energy services at a reasonable cost through appropriate regulatory and market means, and collaborative efforts.

NERC:  Our mission is to assure the effective and efficient reduction of risks to the reliability and security of the grid.

NARUC: Our mission is to serve the public interest by improving the quality and effectiveness of public utility regulation. Under state laws, NARUC's members have an obligation to ensure the establishment and maintenance of utility services as may be required by law and to ensure that such services are provided at rates and conditions that are fair, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory for all consumers.

NASUCA: NASUCA’s members are designated by the laws of their respective jurisdictions to represent the interests of utility consumers before state and federal regulators and in the courts.

FERC and NERC have both warned that the energy transition being pushed by the current Administration, as it is currently being pursued, threatens the reliability, safety, security and economic efficiency of the electric utility grid. Their primary expressed concerns are the rapid decommissioning of dispatchable coal and natural gas powerplants and the slower pace of commissioning of renewable generation capacity, which is resulting in a decrease in the capacity reserve margin on peak as well as the ability of dispatchable generation to respond to renewable intermittency.

However, they will soon be required to focus on the growing share of grid generating capacity which is intermittent and non-dispatchable. The grid requires the ability to dispatch resources as required to meet contemporaneous demand. As the intermittent renewable share of generating capacity increases, it will be essential to add dispatchable storage capacity to the grid to maintain reliability. However, grid scale storage is currently extremely expensive and duration limited. Storage systems capable of discharging large quantities of electricity over prolonged periods are not currently available.

State utility commissions are just beginning to respond (react) to the economic impacts of the energy transition. Utilities have begun filing rate increase requests tied to the costs of the transition. Commissions in several East Coast states have encountered requests for increases in contract prices for electricity from offshore wind projects. Several offshore wind projects have been cancelled and others have been rebid at prices as much as 50% higher than the original contract prices. The contract prices being sought for offshore wind are significantly above the current wholesale price of electricity; and, in many cases, above the current retail prices of electricity.

The energy transition faces a conflict with the “fair and reasonable” rates focus of NARUC and its members. However, this conflict appears likely to result in a head-on collision as state regulators are faced with the need to correct the current storage deficit associated with the existing renewable generating capacity on the grid and the massive costs of implementing sufficient storage on the grid to assure continued reliability as the share of intermittent renewable generation on the grid increases.

The state commissions will also be faced with the necessity of shifting from 40-year straight line depreciation of most utility assets to depreciation over the shorter expected lives of wind turbines, solar collectors and electricity storage infrastructure.

The state utility commissions will also soon be faced with rate increase requests tied to the expansion of the grid required to accommodate the Administration’s “all-electric everything” goal, as well as requests for the securitization of undepreciated investments in coal and natural gas powerplants required to cease operation to comply with Net Zero mandates.

"If there is light at the end of this tunnel, it might well be the headlight of an oncoming train." - Slavoj Zizek

 

Tags: Regulation, Green Energy Transition, Electric Power Dispatchable

False Energy Transition: The View from Australia (Nick Cater, Menzies Research Centre) - Highlighted Article

 

From: Master Resource

By: Robert Bradley Jr.

Date: April 24, 2024


False Energy Transition: The View from Australia (Nick Cater, Menzies Research Centre)
 

“Previous energy transitions adopted energy sources of greater density and efficiency than those they replaced. Those advantages became a natural incentive for their adoption. In the current ‘transition’, the process is reversed unless we are prepared to countenance the mass use of nuclear technology.” – Nick Cater, below

The political “energy transition” has predictably violated comparative energy physics and thus consumer preferences–and best industry practices. A re-look at the failing, impossible “energy transition” was penned by Nick Cater, senior fellow at Menzies Research Centre in Australia. [1] His analysis deserves wide attention, as does his other work at the energy-centric Reality Bites.

 


As the First Fleet vessels, propelled by wind and muscle, made their way to Australia, the last energy transition was making headway in Europe and the United States. The first commercial steamboat completed a successful trial on the Delaware River in New Jersey on August 20, 1787, heralding the arrival of a more powerful and efficient source of energy.


The ability to turn energy-dense fossil fuel into usable energy would be the key to accelerating economic growth in Australia, which began with European settlement. By the time the colony of New South Wales marked a century of settlement in 1878, steam-powered ocean-going vessels were starting to be constructed from steel. Frederick Wolseley was demonstrating a prototype set of steam-driven mechanical shears. This Australian invention secured Australia’s dominance in the supply of wool to steam-powered woollen mills on the other side of the world. (continue reading)

 

False Energy Transition: The View from Australia (Nick Cater, Menzies Research Centre)

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

All-Electric Everything - ORIGINAL CONTENT

The Administration’s All-Electric Everything goal would require the addition of approximately 4,800 GW of storage supported rating plate capacity renewable generation with a capacity factor of approximately 30%, depending on the ultimate proportion of wind and solar generating capacity. The EIA Annual Energy Review projects that solar would provide approximately twice the electricity provided by wind generation. For purposes of this analysis, we will assume 3,200 GW of additional solar generation and 1,600 GW of new wind generation.

The installed cost of premium solar photovoltaic collectors is approximately $1.06 per Watt. Therefore, the estimated installed cost of 3,200 GW of premium solar collectors would be $3.4 trillion. ($1.06/W * 1,000,000,000 W/GW * 3,200 GW).

The installed cost of utility-scale wind turbines is approximately $1,500,000 per MW. Therefore, the estimated installed cost of 1,600 GW of wind generation would be $2.4trillion. ($1,500,000/MW * 1,000 MW/GW * 1,600 GW)

Therefore, the estimated total installed cost of the additional 4,800 GW of renewable generating capacity would be approximately $5.8 trillion, or approximately $220 billion per year through 2050. These costs do not include the cost of the land required for installation, the cost of tripling the capacity of the existing utility grid, or the cost of connecting the generation systems to the grid.

This additional intermittent renewable generation would require storage support to ensure grid reliability. The additional generation would produce approximately 12,600 TWH per year (4,800 GW * 0.30 CF * 8760 hrs/yr). The storage required for support of this intermittent renewable generating capacity would be approximately 3,200 TWH. (12,600 TWH * 0.25)

The installed cost of the storage capacity, restricted to a maximum charge of 80% to extend battery life, would be approximately $414 trillion, [(3,200 TWH * 1,000,000 MWH/TWH) * 25 * $8,128,870) /15.7 MWH] or approximately $16 trillion per year through 2050.

There are expected to be lower cost storage options, some with longer storage duration, in the future. NREL estimates current 4-hour battery costs at $500 per kWh, which is projected to drop to approximately $250 per kWh by 2050. The Tesla Megapack stores 19,600 kWh at an installed cost of approximately $415 per kWh. Form Energy claims that their iron-air battery could be sold for 10% of the price of a lithium battery such as the Tesla Megapack, though their battery is not yet available commercially. However, even if this or other lower cost, longer duration batteries became commercial immediately, they would reduce the projected incremental cost of storage for the all-electric transition from $414 trillion to $41 trillion.

The installed cost of the storage required to support intermittent renewable generation is currently approximately 70 times the cost of the generation, though different storage technology could potentially reduce the cost of storage to 7 times the cost of the generation. Regardless, storage is clearly the most expensive aspect of a renewable plus storage generation system. This cost has been ignored or trivialized for far too long.

 

Tags: Green Energy Transition, Electric Power Dispatchable, Energy Storage / Batteries

DECARBONIZING THE U.S. ECONOMY BY 2050 - Highlighted Article

From: U.S. Department of Energy

Date: April, 2024


DECARBONIZING THE U.S. ECONOMY BY 2050
A National Blueprint for the Buildings Sector


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Residential and commercial buildings are among the largest sources of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the United States, responsible for more than one-third of total U.S. GHG emissions. There are nearly 130 million existing buildings in the United States, with 40 million new homes and 60 billion square feet of commercial floorspace expected to be constructed between now and 2050. Today, most buildings consume large amounts of energy and cause significant climate pollution to meet our basic needs. Buildings account for 74% of U.S. electricity use and building heating and cooling drives peak electricity demand. Moreover, buildings are where electric vehicles (EVs), solar, storage, heat pumps, water heaters, and other distributed energy resources integrate with the electricity system. Consequently, the buildings sector will play a key role in achieving economywide net-zero emissions by 2050.

People spend 90% of their time in buildings and expend substantial sums of money on building energy costs—upwards of $370 billion annually. One in five American households is behind on energy bill payments, with people in economically marginalized communities more likely to face energy insecurity due to high energy costs. Such communities also bear the brunt of healthharming pollution emitted from burning fossil fuels and safety risks from substandard building conditions. Transitioning buildings to clean energy sources and reducing overall energy consumption will therefore address not just climate risks but also the physical and financial well-being of all Americans. (continue reading)

 

DECARBONIZING THE U.S. ECONOMY BY 2050
A National Blueprint for the Buildings Sector

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Economic Reality - ORIGINAL CONTENT

The energy transition envisioned by the current US Administration is an enormous financial endeavor. It would increase the current US electricity sector investment in generation, transmission and distribution facilities from approximately $150 billion per year to approximately $250 billion per year through 2050, roughly tripling industry capitalization to approximately $6 trillion.

The transition would also require the electricity sector to invest between $8 – 80 trillion per year over the period in electricity storage facilities, depending on the ultimate cost of electricity storage infrastructure.

It is difficult to imagine that an electric utility industry with a capitalization of approximately $2 trillion, currently investing approximately $150 billion annually, could increase annual investment by 50X through 2050, no less by 500 times.

It is inconceivable that this level of increased investment in the electric grid could result in the promised reduction in customer electricity cost, especially considering the anticipated securitization of existing, functional and not fully depreciated coal and natural gas generation assets and the far more rapid depreciation of the new generating and storage assets.

Note also that, over the 26-year period to 2050, much of the renewable generation equipment and storage facilities installed early in the transition would begin to require replacement, further increasing investments.

The replacement of fossil end use equipment would largely be the responsibility of the equipment owners and much of the equipment would be replaced with electric equipment at the end of its useful life, so the incremental societal cost of the equipment replacement is not possible to calculate.

The above information is in the public domain and is known by US DOE, FERC and the electric utilities.

The often-repeated promise of cheaper renewable electricity is a fraudulent fantasy.

It is difficult to imagine how a nation with an approximate $28 trillion GDP and a $30 trillion national debt could increase investment in its energy sector alone by $8 - 80 trillion per year through 2050. It is also difficult to imagine how such a nation could justify continued long-term subsidies and incentives funded with increasingly expensive borrowing.

It is also difficult to imagine how US industry would be able to remain competitive in the global economy in competition with industry in China, India, Indonesia and other nations continuing to rely on fossil fuels for their energy needs. Industries are already reducing or terminating production in the UK and Germany, which are further along in their energy transitions than the US.

 

The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.
H. L. Mencken

 

Tags: Electric Utilities, Fossil Fuel Elimination / Reduction, Green Energy Transition

How to Destroy The Myth of Cheap Wind and Solar - Highlighted Article

 

From: Energy Bad Boys - Substack

By: Isaac Orr and Mitch Rolling

Date: March 30, 2024


How to Destroy The Myth of Cheap Wind and Solar


If Wind and Solar Are So Cheap, Why Do They Make Electricity So Expensive?


Have you ever wanted to destroy the arguments claiming that wind and solar are the cheapest forms of energy, but you weren’t sure how to do it? Fear not, dear reader; the Energy Bad Boys have you covered!


The Myth of Cheap Wind and Solar

Wind and solar advocates often cite a metric called the Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) to claim that these energy sources are cheaper than coal, natural gas, and nuclear power plants.

However, these claims, which are already tenuous due to rising wind and solar costs, ignore virtually all of the hidden real-world costs associated with building and operating wind turbines and solar panels while also keeping the grid reliable, including:

  • Additional transmission expenses to connect wind and solar to the grid;
  • Additional costs associated with Green Plating the grid;
  • Additional property taxes because there is more property to tax;
  • “Load balancing costs,” which include the cost of backup generators and batteries;
  • Overbuilding and curtailment costs incurred when wind and solar are overbuilt to meet demand during periods of low wind and solar generation and are turned off during periods of higher output to avoid overloading the grid;
  • These comparisons also ignore the cost differential between low-cost, existing power plants and new power plants.

Add all of these factors together, and you have a recipe for soaring electricity prices due to the addition of new wind, solar, and battery storage on the electric grid.

To remedy this situation, we developed a model to calculate the levelized cost of intermittency (LCOI), which is the additional costs borne by the entire electric system as ever-growing levels of intermittent wind and solar generation are incorporated onto the electric grid. (continue reading)

 

How to Destroy The Myth of Cheap Wind and Solar

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

All-Electric Storage - ORIGINAL CONTENT

The US Administration has established a goal of transitioning all energy end uses in the economy to electric end uses by 2050. This would be a massive undertaking, requiring the application of currently non-existent technology, particularly in industrial and transportation end uses.

The US currently consumes approximately 4,200 TWH of electricity each year with a generation fleet of approximately 1,200 GW. The transition to all-electric everything would require an increase in electric generation to approximately 13,000 TWH from a storage supported predominantly intermittent generation fleet of approximately 6,000 GW with a capacity factor of approximately 30%, depending on the mix of wind and solar in the generation fleet.

A recent paper, summarized by its primary author, concludes that a predominantly intermittent renewable powered electric grid would require storage equal to approximately 25% of annual generation to assure reliability. Thus, the US all-electric everything grid would require electricity storage capacity of approximately 3,300 TWH. However, research suggests that battery life could be extended by operating the batteries between 20% and 80% of rated capacity. The batteries would be expected to experience charge below 20% only rarely, so this condition could be safely ignored. However, to avoid charging the batteries to above 80% of their rated capacity while assuring adequate capacity, total electric storage capacity would be increased by 25%, to approximately 4200 TWH.

The primary battery storage system currently being installed for grid level storage is the Tesla Megapack, which stores 19.6 MWH deliverable at a rate of 4.9 MW over a 4-hour period. Restricting the Megapack to a maximum 80% charge would reduce its storage capacity to approximately 15.7 MWH. Under these conditions, satisfying the storage requirements of the all-electric everything grid would require approximately 270 million Megapacks at an approximate installed cost of $2.2 quadrillion.

There are expected to be lower cost storage options, some with longer storage duration, in the future. NREL estimates current 4-hour battery costs at $500 per kWh, which is projected to drop to approximately $250 per kWh by 2050. The Tesla Megapack stores 19,600 kWh at an installed cost of approximately $415 per kWh. Form Energy claims that their iron-air battery could be sold for 10% of the price of a lithium battery such as the Tesla Megapack, though their battery is not yet available commercially. However, even if this or other lower cost, longer duration batteries became commercial immediately, they would only reduce the projected cost of storage for the all-electric transition from $2.2 quadrillion to $220 trillion.

The all-electric transition is the most challenging aspect of the Administration’s Net Zero goal, since it requires a rough tripling of US electricity generation and also requires twice as much storage as the transition from fossil to renewable generation in the electricity sector. This transition has already begun, with the major promotion and incentivization of electric vehicles and public charging stations for those vehicles. Fortunately, it is to occur over a period twice as long as the electricity sector transition.

 

Tags: Electricity Consumption, Electric Power Reliability, Energy Storage / Batteries

Which Power Source is Best - Highlighted Article

 

From: Watts Up With That

By: Roger Caiazza

Date: March 28, 2024


Which Power Source is Best


Bud’s Offshore Energy blog highlighted a new national energy report card that is of interest to readers here.  According to the Mackinac Center press release the report ranks energy sources by ranking eight key energy resource types “based on their ability to meet growing demand for affordable, reliable, and clean energy generation”.  The report concludes that “natural gas and nuclear power lead the rest of the class in generating clean and affordable energy”.

Jason Hayes and Timothy G. Nash co-authored this report from Northwood University’s McNair Center for the Advancement of Free Enterprise and Entrepreneurship and the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.  The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is a nonprofit research and educational institute that advances the principles of free markets and limited government.

Methodology

The report summarizes the scoring methodology:

Bottom Line Up Front: Each ranking area graded the energy resource on a scale of 1 to 10. If an energy source performed poorly, it received a 1, if it performed well, it received a 10.

The scores in each section were totaled and broken down from 1 to 50. The energy source was given a final letter grade of A to F based on its score out of 50. The grading system results in a comparative ranking that describes the energy resource as excellent (90-100 /A-range), very good (80-89/B-range), average (70-79/C-range), poor (60-69/D-range), and Failure (59 or below/F).  This methodology is roughly based on the American Society of Civil Engineers’ methodology described in the annual “A Comprehensive Assessment of American’s Infrastructure: 2021 Report Card for America’s Infrastructure” document.

The score card evaluated each energy source for five ranking areas:

  1. Capacity and Reliability: We estimated the capability of this energy source to produce sufficient energy to meet demand. We also considered how plans to maintain existing (or build new) infrastructure and capacity will meet growing energy demand.
  2. Environmental/Human Impact: We asked what are the environmental impacts, the human rights, or other labor issues associated with using this energy source.
  3. Cost: We asked how the energy source competes with other energy sources in terms of pricing.
  4. Technology and Innovation: We asked what technologies are used and what new technologies are being developed for this energy source.
  5. Market feasibility: We considered whether the energy source relies on free-market forces to supply energy to the public. To what extent do subsidies and/or government mandates drive its adoption and use?


The report includes recommendations for policies that could be implemented to improve this sector’s performance. (continue reading)

 

Which Power Source is Best

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

No Gas Storage - ORIGINAL CONTENT

In a summary of a recent peer-reviewed paper, the principal author stated that an electric grid predominantly powered by intermittent renewables such as wind and solar would require storage approximately equal to 25% of annual generation to be reliable. Other studies have reported similar results.

US natural gas powerplants produced approximately 1,800,000 GWH of electricity in 2023. The Administration has announced a goal of eliminating natural gas electric generation by 2035. Achieving this goal would require installation of approximately 685 GW of wind and solar rating plate generation, depending on the percentages of wind and solar generation.

Based on the Fekete paper, the US would also require a total of approximately 450,000 GWH of additional electricity storage capacity as the result of the elimination of natural gas generation. The primary battery storage system currently being installed for grid level storage is the Tesla Megapack, which stores 19.3 MWH deliverable at a rate of 4.9 MW over a 4-hour period. Utilizing Tesla Megapacks to support the intermittent wind and solar generation installed to replace US natural gas powerplants would require approximately 23,300,000 units at a current installed cost of $8,128,870 per unit, for a total installed cost of approximately $190 trillion.

Research suggests that battery life can be extended by operating the batteries between 20% and 80% of full charge. Grid scale batteries would be expected to operate below 20% of full charge very rarely, so the lower limit can essentially be ignored. However, limiting the batteries to a maximum charge of 80%, while maintaining necessary electricity storage would require increasing the installed battery capacity by 25%, at an installed cost of approximately $48 trillion, increasing the total battery system installed cost to approximately $238 trillion. (Note: These costs do not include the land required for installation or the cost of grid connection.)

The US currently has an electricity storage deficit of approximately 140,000 GWH. Fossil fueled generation currently provides support for the existing wind and solar generation in the absence of this storage and there is growing concern regarding grid capacity margins during peak demand periods. Therefore, as coal and natural gas powerplants are decommissioned, it would be essential that the current storage deficit be eliminated as well as installing the additional storage required to support the intermittent generating capacity which would provide the generation previously provided by the coal and natural gas powerplants. This would require the installation of approximately 47 million Tesla Megapacks (or equivalent). Currently, production capacity does not exist to meet this demand over the next 11 years.

Also, as coal and natural gas power plants are decommissioned, there will be a growing need for long-duration storage to support the grid through seasonal variation in both wind and solar generation. The only current long-duration systems are pumped hydro facilities. However, it is unlikely that significant additional pumped hydro capacity will be installed in the US because of geographic limitations and public resistance.

 

Tags: Natural Gas, Electric Power Generation, Energy Storage / Batteries, Fossil Fuel Elimination / Reduction

The extraordinary climate events of 2022-24 - Highlighted Article


From: Climate Etc.

By: Javier Vinós

Date: March 24, 2024


The extraordinary climate events of 2022-24

 

The unlikely volcano, the warmest year, and the collapse of the polar vortex.


The climate events of 2022-24 have been were truly extraordinary. From an unlikely undersea volcanic eruption to the warmest year on record to the collapse of the polar vortex after three sudden stratospheric warming events. This rare convergence presents a unique learning opportunity for climatologists and climate aficionados alike, offering insights into a climate event that may not be repeated for hundreds or even thousands of years.

January 2022, the unlikely volcano
Never before have we witnessed an undersea volcanic eruption with a plume capable of reaching the stratosphere and depositing a large amount of vaporized water. This extraordinary event occurred in January 2022 when the Hunga Tonga volcano erupted. The conditions for such an event are rare: the volcano must be deep enough to propel enough water with the plume, but not too deep to prevent it from reaching the stratosphere. Most undersea volcanoes do not produce plumes at all, which makes Hunga Tonga’s eruption all the more remarkable.

The Hunga Tonga volcano occupied a unique “sweet spot” at a depth of 150 meters the day before the eruption. In addition, the eruption itself must be exceptionally powerful for water vapor to rise into the stratosphere. The January 2022 eruption of Hunga Tonga was the most powerful in 30 years, since the 1991 eruption of Mt. Pinatubo. (continue reading)

 

The extraordinary climate events of 2022-24

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

No Coal Storage - ORIGINAL CONTENT

In a summary of a recent peer-reviewed paper, the principal author stated that an electric grid predominantly powered by intermittent renewables such as wind and solar would require storage approximately equal to 25% of annual generation to be reliable. Other studies have reported similar results.

US coal powerplants produced approximately 700,000 GWH of electricity in 2023. The Administration has announced a goal of eliminating coal generation by 2030. Achieving this goal would require installation of approximately 270 GW of wind and solar rating plate capacity generation, depending on the percentages of wind and solar generation.

Based on the Fekete paper, the US would also require a total of approximately 175,000 GWH of additional electricity storage as the result of the elimination of coal power plants. The primary battery storage system currently being installed for grid level storage is the Tesla Megapack, which stores 19.3 MWH deliverable at a rate of 4.9 MW over a 4-hour period. Utilizing Tesla Megapacks to support the intermittent wind and solar generation installed to replace US coal powerplants would require 9,067.357 units at a current installed cost of $8,128,870 per unit, for a total installed cost of $74 trillion.

Research suggests that battery life can be extended by operating the batteries between 20% and 80% of full charge. Grid scale batteries would be expected to operate below 20% of full charge very rarely, so the lower limit can essentially be ignored. However, limiting the batteries to a maximum charge of 80%, while maintaining necessary electricity storage would require increasing the installed battery capacity by 25%, at an installed cost of approximately $18 trillion, increasing the total battery system installed cost to approximately $92 trillion. (Note: These costs do not include the land required for installation or the cost of grid connection.)

The US currently has an electricity storage deficit of approximately 140,000 GWH. Fossil fueled generation currently provides support for the existing wind and solar generation in the absence of this storage and there is growing concern regarding grid capacity margins during peak demand periods. Therefore, as coal powerplants are decommissioned, it would be essential that the current storage deficit be eliminated as well as installing the additional storage required to support the intermittent generating capacity which would provide the generation previously provided by the coal powerplants. This would require the installation of approximately 18 million Tesla Megapacks (or equivalent). Currently, production capacity does not exist to meet this demand over the next 6 years.

Also, as coal power plants are decommissioned, there will be a growing need for long-duration storage to support the grid through seasonal variation in both wind and solar generation. The only current long-duration systems are pumped hydro facilities. However, it is unlikely that significant additional pumped hydro capacity will be installed in the US because of geographic limitations and public resistance.

 

Tags: Electric Power Generation, Coal, Energy Storage / Batteries, Fossil Fuel Elimination / Reduction

200 Ways the Biden Administration and Democrats Have Made it Harder to Produce Oil & Gas - Highlighted Article


From: IER

By: Thomas J. Pyle

Date: March 7, 2024


200 Ways the Biden Administration and Democrats Have Made it Harder to Produce Oil & Gas


President Biden and Democrats have a plan for American energy: make it harder to produce and more expensive to purchase. Since Mr. Biden took office, his administration and its allies have taken over 200 actions deliberately designed to make it harder to produce energy here in America. A list of those actions, which includes a few high-profile actions taken in states like New York and California, appears below. A PDF of the full list is available to download here.

___________________________

On January 20, 2021,

  • Besides canceling the Keystone XL pipeline,
  • President Biden restricted domestic production by issuing a moratorium on all oil and natural gas leasing activities in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
  • He also restored and expanded the use of the government-created social cost of carbon metric to artificially increase the regulatory costs of energy production of fossil fuels when performing analyses, as well as artificially increase the so-called “benefits” of decreasing production.
  • Biden continued to revoke Trump administration executive orders, including those related to the Waters of the United States rule and the Antiquities Act. The Trump-era actions decreased regulations on Federal land and expanded the ability to produce energy domestically

On January 27, 2021,

  • Biden issued an executive order announcing a moratorium on new oil and gas leases on public lands
  • or in offshore waters
  • and reconsideration of Federal oil and gas permitting and leasing practices.
  • He directed his Interior Department to conduct a review of permitting and leasing policies.
  • Also, by Executive Order, Biden directed agencies to eliminate federal fossil fuel “subsidies” wherever possible, disadvantaging oil and natural gas compared to other industries that receive similar Federal tax treatments or other energy sources which receive direct subsidies.
  • This Biden Executive Order attacked the energy industry by promoting “ending international financing of carbon-intensive fossil fuel-based energy while simultaneously advancing sustainable development and a green recovery.” In other words, the U.S. government would leverage its power to attack oil and gas producers while subsidizing favored industries.
  • Biden’s EO pushed for an increase in enforcement of “environmental justice” violations and support for such efforts, which typically are advanced by radical environmental organizations and slip-and-fall lawyers hoping to cash in on the backs of energy consumers. (continue reading)

 

200 Ways the Biden Administration and Democrats Have Made it Harder to Produce Oil & Gas

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Current Storage Deficit - ORIGINAL CONTENT

In a summary of a recent peer-reviewed paper, the principal author stated that an electric grid predominantly powered by intermittent renewables such as wind and solar would require storage approximately equal to 25% of annual generation to be reliable. Other studies have reported similar results (here, here and here).

US wind and solar generation in 2023 totaled approximately 575,000 GWH. Based on the Fekete paper, the US would require a total of approximately 140,000 GWH of electricity storage to render this intermittent generation dispatchable, capable of replacing fossil fueled dispatchable generation. The US currently has approximately 60 GWH of battery storage and approximately 25,000 GWH of pumped hydro storage. This leaves an estimated storage deficit of approximately 115,000 GWH.

The primary battery storage system currently being installed for grid level storage is the Tesla Megapack, which stores 19.3 MWH deliverable at a rate of 4.9 MW over a 4-hour period. Eliminating the current US electricity storage deficit with Tesla Megapacks would require installation of 5,887,347 units at an estimated installed cost of $8,128,870 per unit, for a total installed cost of $48 trillion.

Research suggests that battery life can be extended by operating the batteries between 20% and 80% of full charge. Grid scale batteries would be expected to operate below 20% of full charge very rarely, so the lower limit can essentially be ignored. However, limiting the batteries to a maximum charge of 80%, while maintaining necessary electricity storage would require increasing the installed battery capacity by 25%, at an installed cost of approximately $12 trillion, increasing the total battery system installed cost to approximately $60 trillion. (Note: These costs do not include the land required for installation or the cost of grid connection.)

Tesla reports a roundtrip efficiency of approximately 95% for its Megapacks, significantly higher than the approximate 80% efficiency reported by EIA. NREL estimates current 4-hour battery costs at $500 per kWh, which is projected to drop to approximately $250 per kWh by 2050. The Tesla Megapack stores 19,600 kWh at an installed cost of approximately $415 per kWh.

Wind and solar currently generate approximately 12% of US utility scale electricity. Hydro, biomass and geothermal generate approximately 8%. Nuclear generates approximately 20%. The remaining 60% is generated using fossil fuels. Replacing these fossil fuel generators with dispatchable wind and solar generation plus storage would require installation of wind and solar capable of generating approximately an additional 2,540,000 GWH of electricity and storage capable of storing approximately an additional 630,000 GWH of electricity, preferably with much longer duration storage capability.

With apologies to the late Senator Everett McKinley Dirksen (R, IL);
“A trillion here. A trillion there. Soon you’re talking about real money.”

 

Tags: Solar Energy, Wind Energy, Electric Power Dispatchable, Energy Storage / Batteries

Scientists Expose Major Problems With Climate Change Data - Highlighted Article

 

From: The Epoch Times

By: Alex Newman

Date: February 28, 2024


Scientists Expose Major Problems With Climate Change Data


‘Climate activism has become the new religion of the 21st century—heretics are not welcome and not allowed to ask questions,’ said astrophysicist Willie Soon.

 

Temperature records used by climate scientists and governments to build models that then forecast dangerous manmade global warming repercussions have serious problems and even corruption in the data, multiple scientists who have published recent studies on the issue told The Epoch Times.

The Biden administration leans on its latest National Climate Assessment report as evidence that global warming is accelerating because of human activities. The document states that human emissions of “greenhouse gases” such as carbon dioxide are dangerously warming the Earth.
The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) holds the same view, and its leaders are pushing major global policy changes in response.

But scientific experts from around the world in a variety of fields are pushing back. In peer-reviewed studies, they cite a wide range of flaws with the global temperature data used to reach the dire conclusions; they say it’s time to reexamine the whole narrative.

Problems with temperature data include a lack of geographically and historically representative data, contamination of the records by heat from urban areas, and corruption of the data introduced by a process known as “homogenization.”

The flaws are so significant that they make the temperature data—and the models based on it—essentially useless or worse, three independent scientists with the Center for Environmental Research and Earth Sciences (CERES) explained. (continue reading)

 

Scientists Expose Major Problems With Climate Change Data

 

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