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Historic Eclipse will test US solar-power grid like … clouds do

Eclipse Map: NASA

Feel the panic. Or not.

Historic Eclipse Will Test America’s Grid as Solar Waxes, Wanes

Grid operators, utilities and electricity generators are bracing for more than 12,000 megawatts of solar power to start falling offline as the moon blocks out the sun across a 70-mile-wide (113-kilometer) corridor stretching from Oregon to South Carolina.

This is the first major test of the power grid since America started bringing large amounts of intermittent solar and wind resources onto the system. It comes just as the grid is undergoing an unprecedented transformation whereby flexible resources such as battery storage will complement growing supplies of solar and wind.

Reader Andrew writes: “The path of totality is trivially narrow although the partial eclipse is quite wide. But they mustn’t have clouds in the US.”

Indeed.

Looks like it is being marketed as some kind of dummy run to “prove” intermittent energy will not hurt the grid when it “takes over”?

The celestial event provides an opportunity to test plants, software and markets refined in recent years in anticipation of the day when renewable energy becomes the dominant source of power.

Or perhaps it’s just the faithful reassuring themselves that the eclipse won’t end up being another disastrous blackout other people can blame on renewables. Look at how much trouble they have to go to:

California, home to more solar power than any other state, will tap into its network of hydropower generators and gas plants that can ramp up quickly to fill a 6,000-megawatt gap in solar energy. The state also embarked upon a public relations campaign to convince residents to conserve energy to minimize greenhouse-gas emissions while solar plants are down.

These stories of fear of a grid breakdown or “whiplash” have been going on for months:

May 2nd:   The US is using so much solar power that it will have to prepare for the August eclipse.

See also:  Solar Eclipse 2017: Californians Urged To Conserve Energy including 10 tips to conserve energy at home.

Back then the dire predictions for the frightening drop in production were graphed like this:

Electricity supply, california, eclipse.

 

Which is not quite like the volatility we see with wind power nearly every day:

Wind power, volatility.

And graphed as MW:
MW generation, wind energy, Austrtalian national network, NEM.
 

 

The Australian National grid deals with about 3,500MW of wind power coming and going all the time and without 3 months to plan for it. Surely California can cope with 6,000?

I predict happy stories tomorrow of how the-solar-grid survived the test.

The Europeans, of course, have been there and done that already. “How Solar-Heavy Europe Avoided a Blackout during Total Eclipse”

PS: WUWT will carry the eclipse LIVE starting at 9AM EDT, available here: http://wp.me/p7y4l-KLi

h/t Pat and Andrew and Analytic

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107 comments to Historic Eclipse will test US solar-power grid like … clouds do

  • #
    Dave in the States

    I just got finished watching it. There’s still about 10% of the sun blocked right now. We had a totality of 95% here, which was plenty good enough. I wasn’t going to fight crowds and traffic for that extra 5%.

    What didn’t expect, but it makes sense, was the significant drop of temperature. It was about 74 degrees F when it started and it dropped to 59 degrees F at the darkest point. It is now about 61 degrees. We have absolutely no cloud cover at all today. What little breeze completely stopped. It was completely still during the eclipse. There is a little breeze starting up again now.

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    • #
      Will Janoschka

      “It was about 74 degrees F when it started and it dropped to 59 degrees F at the darkest point. It is now about 61 degrees.”
      Thanks Dave. It should not get back up to 74°F.
      Do you know of anyone doing such measurement on a whole 10km column of atmosphere? The whole time series along the track. Long ago measurements seem to indicate, where clouds do not form, the whole column drops in temperature than again increases again with little or no change in temperature lapse. This of course would completely destroy the claim that the surface must transfer power flux to the atmosphere, through conduction or convection. Such power transfer to the atmospheric mass via EMR would be highly unlikely as there is a (5-6) minute delay on the temperature profile with respect to the visible insolation measurement profile at eclipse; at least from any repeatable near surface measurement.
      All the best!-will-

      140

      • #
        Dave in the States

        It did not get back to 74 degrees. After about 30 minutes it climbed back up to 66 degrees and then to 70 degrees during the afternoon, but that was it. A few hours later and some thunder bumpers started to roll in, and dropped the temp back down again.

        I first noted the moon started to block a small portion of the sun at 11:04 AM my time. The 95% totality occurred at 11:35, but the moon was still blocking a small portion of the sun as late as 12:58 PM. It was nearly a 2 hour duration of some blockage from start to finish.

        The conditions before and during the eclipse here were: the temperature 74 degrees F dropping to 59 degrees, a slight breeze changing to a dead calm, no cloud cover, and the relative humidity being 35%.

        100

        • #
          toorightmate

          Dave,
          The change in temperature was “solely” due to someone fiddling with the controls of a CO2 generator.

          100

          • #
            Roger

            Some ‘climate scientist’ can use the evidence that temperatures drop dramatically when solar and wind power generation fall to nothing to conclude and ‘prove’ that they are heating the atmosphere …….. its about the same nonsense as so much of climate “science” that gets published and is insisted to be “settled science”.

            10

        • #
          Will Janoschka

          “The conditions before and during the eclipse here were: the temperature 74 degrees F dropping to 59 degrees, a slight breeze changing to a dead calm, no cloud cover, and the relative humidity being 35%.”
          Dave! Thank you again for your careful measurements at your location and time interval. There are no possible ‘corrections’ to your measurement. Please let the rest of us ponder that columnar atmospheric delay function.
          Your actual ‘measurement’ must remain ‘pristine’ as that is all we can ever have.
          All the best! -will-

          80

    • #
      Jetset_au

      Tell.me.again how CO2 is a better insulator than H2O ;~). We were on.a ferry from Seattle to Vancouver goi.g thru a fogbank with horns blowing till just before it started. We justdulled a bit

      30

    • #
      Mark M

      John Hewson:

      “None of us would know that climate was an issue if the scientists hadn’t told us.

      
You can’t look out the window and see it’s a problem.”

      http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-22/john-hewson-pleads-for-politicians-to-go-back-to-evidence/8463782

      radio: http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2016/s4657161.htm
      . . .

      But, you can look out the window and see how the sun controls our climate during an eclipse.

      (For o/s vistors, John Hewson is a politician who lost the unlose-able election. Not a scientist.)

      111

      • #
        toorightmate

        Also for O/S visitors, John Hewson had a very challenging time – with arithmetic (and he is a qualified economist!!!)

        50

        • #
          Allen Ford

          Hey, fair go, toorightmate! Poor old Johan was caught out on a ticklish tax question on a birthday cake.

          Qualified Economist he may once have been, but patissier he ain’t!

          20

        • #
          Dennis

          To be fair to Hewson, and I am not a fan, the question that caused him to stumble was a Goods & Services Tax (proposed as part of his election campaign tax reform plan) question as to it applying or not to a cake.

          It was a clever question put to him to deliberately confuse the issue by a journalist out to entrap him.

          By the way, GST was one part of the major economic reforms covered by the Campbell Report on major economic reform commissioned by Treasurer John Howard (Fraser government) and adopted by Treasurer Keating (Hawke government), and the NZ Lange government also adopted it.

          But when NZ introduced GST Labor Oz rejected it following union pressure to not proceed.

          Hewson was proposing tax reform including GST that even Treasurer (and at that election PM) Keating had wanted to impose.

          That’s politics, the politicians back flip without blinking an eye.

          50

  • #
    KinkyKeith

    An interesting outline Dave, thanks.

    What was so interesting was the sudden drop in atmospheric temperature which suggests that CO2 didn’t do much of a job in its capacity as a “heat trapping gas”.

    So much for the “science” of man made global warming.

    KK

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    • #
      Roger

      Very good point – perhaps one that needs airing widely. Thanks

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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      The “trapping of heat” by CO2 is a physiological manifestation, and not a physical one.

      Anybody who has been unfortunate enough to spend any time in a submarine, gets to understand that. You may feel hot, but the thermometer isn’t fooled.

      141

    • #
      PeterPetrum

      How interesting, KK. Would love to see an explanation from, say, Prof Flim Flannery on that one.

      60

      • #
        Sceptical Sam

        Well, it didn’t rain on Dave in the States during the event, did it.

        Surely that proves the mammalogist’s prediction that Perth, Western Australia, will be the first city in the C21st to be abandoned because of the lack of rain.

        The science is settled.

        40

  • #

    Australians probably know better than Americans that U.S. Democrats want to ban all sorts of electrical generation and keep hemp illegal. But the party that won the November 2016 election has no energy ban or subsidy in its platform: 1. We oppose any carbon tax.
    2. We support the development of all forms of energy that are marketable in a free economy without subsidies, including coal, oil, natural gas, nuclear power, and hydropower.
    3. We support expedited siting processes and the thoughtful expansion of the grid so that consumers and businesses continue to have access to affordable and reliable electricity.
    This is the ONLY real difference in the platforms of the two parties. The Libertarian Party, whose 4 million votes far outnumber the popular vote difference between the large looter parties, also has nothing against unsubsidized and unregulated generation of electric power or hemp. The reason the Dems won in 2008 was that the Republicans, as in 1929, 1932, and 1987, had completely wrecked the economy with prohibitionist asset-forfeiture looting.

    10

  • #
    Eddie

    Is it just coincidence that claims for whiplash have become one of the commonest motoring insurance scams in recent years, such that insurers are now explicitly excluding the condition, real or imagined ?

    51

  • #
    David Maddison

    O/T

    A 2.7 million year old ice core has been recovered in Antarctica.

    I am concerned as to whether or not a warmist interpretation has been applied to the results because of the statement:

    Air bubbles from 2.7 million years ago offer evidence of climactic conditions during the time before the ice ages began, perhaps offering clues as to why they occurred. Already, the team has found that atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were at approximately 300 ppm, which is considerably lower than today’s 400 ppm.

    https://m.phys.org/news/2017-08-million-year-old-ice-core-antarctica.html#google_vignette

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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      To draw any parallels between the Earth, 2.7 million years, and the Earth today, the researchers will need to investigate all of the possible alternative climatic changes over that 2.7 million years, to be able to draw any meaningful conclusions, between then and now.

      I wish them luck with that.

      92

      • #
        Graeme No.3

        Rereke Whakaaro:
        Investigate alternatives? Why would they? They just announce that their conclusions are the only meaningful ones. They’ve got away with that approach for years.

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      • #
        Mark

        Easy. What climate changes between then and now would you like? I can deliver. I have a grant.

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      • #
        Another Ian

        RW

        Luck not needed. Imagination will be sufficient.

        52

    • #
      toorightmate

      Those bones which have just been discovered on the moon ……..
      The cow didn’t make it!

      82

    • #
      Kevin Lohse

      So what they are saying is that 300ppm CO2 is low enough to initiate an ice age? Burn More Coal!

      00

  • #
    David Maddison

    Did the salt freeze at Ivanpah or do they just keep the natural gas burners running?

    123

  • #
    Mark M

    Electric car owners have been warned that if they attempt to boil a kettle while charging their car it will blow the fuse.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/08/21/dont-boil-kettle-charging-electric-car-will-blow-fuse-national/

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    • #
      OriginalSteve

      Wow…you can boil a kettle from your electric car? Who’d have thought…..

      This is a question I asked someone recently who was all keen for everyone to drive electric shopping trolleys….namely if the grid is already unstable and each house doubles its normal load by adding an electric car, how does the grid cope? In effect your are doubling the load on the grid as not every car will be charged over night ( like out while shopping for example ).

      Likewise, if we assume a house runs on electricity for most of its heating and its a cold night, then add in the load of an electric car charging and you have major problems for the grid. Perhaps ban ownership of electric cars until the house its garaged at has solar and batteries?

      The more I think about this whole electric car thing, the dumber and dumber it seems….double grid load and make it less stable at teh same time.

      hey – surely the powers that be arent trying to crash the grid?

      101

  • #
    Ian Hill

    Back in 1976 when a total eclipse crossed Australia near Adelaide and Melbourne on a Saturday afternoon the biggest concern was whether cricket matches and weddings should be cancelled. Imagine all the fuss these days!

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    • #
      Graeme No.3

      Yes, it was interesting. We were having a BBQ at Osicka’s Winery (back of Goulburn) as sunlight faded. An assortment of animals suddenly appeared thinking it was night coming. 2 snakes, some wallabies and a large lizard (fortunately for him as the log he was in was next in line for the fire).

      101

      • #
        Ian Hill

        I went to Mount Gambier and watched the eclipse from the tower and I recall seeing someone water-skiing on Valley Lake, the only person ever to do so in the dark because access to the lake was always closed at sunset. Yes Graeme, the thing that struck me was the animal and bird behaviour, particularly when the sun became uncovered and it was just like dawn happening all over again.

        Fortunately where I was the clouds parted just in time to see the totally eclipsed sun, much to the relief of the large contingent of scientists and tourists there.

        70

  • #
    toorightmate

    Australia is covered by an enormous dark cloud today.
    It is called Malcom Turnbull.

    130

    • #
      el gordo

      He is still more popular than Bill.

      If this gender referendum vote goes well, without mayhem in the streets, then we could move onto voting for a republic before Xmas.

      The PM would have to give up his day job to contest the election for president nest year, a political gamble, nevertheless he would be on short odds going into the first round.

      25

  • #

    Well, that’s over. So we now know that lack of sunshine will affect the output of solar panels, an old-fashioned technology which, like feeble, rickety wind power, has gobbled ten-fold the resources and interest due to anything truly new and experimental.

    And Big Green rolls on, the troops will stay, the debt will grow…but an Australian politician linked to the likes of the Trilateral Commission or the Clinton Foundation or Soros will have his/her loyalty confirmed by holding just the one passport…unless people who know better say otherwise. (Some tinkering with Australia’s constitution will be needed for this latter result, but that’ll be a chance to rejig the old thing while we’re under the hood. Anybody mind? You can watch Masterchef while our experts do it for you.)

    Are the news media – all of the mainstream and nearly all of the alt – just one giant distraction?

    100

  • #
    pat

    Gillis is always good for a laugh:

    18 Aug: NYT: Justin Gillis: Should You Trust Climate Science? Maybe the Eclipse Is a Clue
    Thanks to the work of scientists, people will know exactly what time to expect the eclipse. In less entertaining but more important ways, we respond to scientific predictions all the time, even though we have no independent capacity to verify the calculations. We tend to trust scientists.

    For years now, atmospheric scientists have been handing us a set of predictions about the likely consequences of our emissions of industrial gases. These forecasts are critically important, because this group of experts sees grave risks to our civilization. And yet, when it comes to reacting to the warnings of climate science, we have done little.

    If the science were brand new, that might make sense, but climate scientists have been making predictions since the end of the 19th century. This is the acid test of any scientific theory: Does it make predictions that ultimately come true?…

    So what predictions has climate science made, and have they come true?…READ ON
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/18/climate/should-you-trust-climate-science-maybe-the-eclipse-is-a-clue.html?mcubz=1

    30

    • #
      PeterPetrum

      Gillis is clearly not a scientist.

      “The earliest, made by a Swede named Svante Arrhenius in 1897, was simply that the Earth would heat up in response to emissions. That has been proved: The global average temperature has risen more than 1 degree Celsius, or almost 2 degrees Fahrenheit, a substantial change for a whole planet.”

      He has not heard that “correlation is not causation”. It is this kind of cr*p that convinces the majority of the population, also not scientists, that “we are all rooned” and going to fry.

      52

      • #
        tom0mason

        ““The earliest, made by a Swede named Svante Arrhenius in 1897,…”
        Maybe Gillis should read Jennifer Marohasy latest on the natural climate variation…

        According to mainstream climate science, most of the recent global warming is our fault – caused by human emissions of carbon dioxide. The rational for this is a speculative theory about the absorption and emission of infrared radiation by carbon dioxide that dates back to 1896. It’s not disputed that carbon dioxide absorbs infrared radiation, what is uncertain is the sensitivity of the climate to increasing atmospheric concentrations.

        This sensitivity may have been grossly overestimated by Svante Arrhenius more than 120 years ago, with these overestimations persisting in the computer-simulation models that underpin modern climate science [2]. We just don’t know; in part because the key experiments have never been undertaken [2].

        What I do have are whizz-bang gaming computers that can run artificial neural networks (ANN), which are a form of machine learning: think big data and artificial intelligence.

        My colleague, Dr John Abbot, has been using this technology for over a decade to forecast the likely direction of particular stock on the share market – for tomorrow.

        Since 2011, I’ve been working with him to use this same technology for rainfall forecasting – for the next month and season [4,5,6]. And we now have a bunch of papers in international climate science journals on the application of this technique showing its more skilful than the Australian Bureau of Meteorology’s General Circulation Models for forecasting monthly rainfall.

        http://jennifermarohasy.com/2017/08/recent-warming-natural/

        31

  • #
    DaveR

    Jo, the Australian wind energy output graph for 19 days in August 2015 is interesting. The LHS scale shows 0-100, and the top RH box says “MW %”. The trace gives the impression that a number of individual windfarms are running at 100% capacity over a few consequtive days and even flat-line, although the national average output is lower.

    MY question is, what is the left hand MW scale? Is it installed capacity? Plotting all the eastern states at once will be mixing up different weather systems, but the plot is quite revealing.

    42

    • #

      Dave — Good question. The plot is net capacity as a percentage, so 100% = 3500MW. If you go to the link above the graph you can choose % or MW. I looked for a MW graph and didn’t happen to have one handy which is why I added the line about 3,500MW.

      And yes, it is national output (nearly) as it includes windfarms everywhere except WA and the NT. There are huge distances involved as the grid stretches from the tropics down to far south Tasmania, yet often a weather pattern will dominate to the point where the entire national wind output is a mere 10% of capacity.

      82

      • #

        I’ve added the MW graph from July to the post. :- )

        72

        • #
          Geoff

          If the base load sources were removed completely would the grid work at all?

          52

          • #
          • #

            If the base load sources were removed completely would the grid work at all?

            No.

            That huge Base Load is even around 70 to 75% during the Evening Peak, and up beyond 80% at 4AM, even when it is running at lower levels than it does during that evening peak, when coal fired power is typically generating between 3500 and 4000MW more than at 4AM.

            Remove that Base Load and NOTHING will run. The whole Country would just stop. Every single other power generating source would drop off line, as well, as the demand would be way more than what could be generated, so as that Base Load failed, then every power plant would also fail, and could not be brought back on line until those plants could be incrementally brought back on line.

            The coal fired plants would come back first, and then others to make up the dedicated load, and lastly those wind plants would then come back on line.

            Even if Wind power was capable of generating its maximum power, around 4000MW, that is hopelessly lower than what is being demanded, so they could NOT come on line until the grid was actually stabilised.

            You wouldn’t even need to lose ALL those coal fired plants, perhaps one in NSW, (Bayswater or Eraring) Loy Yang in Victoria, and perhaps Milmerran Kogan Creek and Tarong North in Queensland, so, let’s say four plants, and the whole of Australia would go black. If those four dropped off line, then the rest would be hopelessly less than Demand, so one after the other, every other plant would drop off line, for safety reasons, and all of that dropping off line might take a little time to happen, say one and a half to two seconds perhaps.

            Perhaps Tasmania would be the only State not to lose power, because of all the Hydro they have.

            It’s not even pretty to speculate on something like that happening.

            Tony.

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            • #
              ROM

              Following the end of WW2 the allied forces did the usual war room and very detailed analysis of both their own strengths and vulnerabilities and performances as well as those of the defeated powers such as Germany.

              One of the real surprises for the allied analysts was the almost paranoid fear the Germans had that the allies would come to the realisation that Germany’s electrical power generating system was extremely vulnerable and could fail catastrophically if it was successfully attacked for any sustained period.
              The Germans in fact were always on border line supplies of power for the war effort for almost the entire war.

              Had the allies realised this weakness in the German war economy they would have directed a lot more effort into knocking out power stations and sub stations instead of trying to knock out ball bearing and other manufacturing centres which after heavy bombing raids were usually back up to 80% or more of their former production within a couple of weeks.
              The buildings might have been demolished but a lot of the critical heavy machinery was relatively undamaged except if it got a direct hit from a bomb.

              60

  • #
    pat

    one to watch:

    21 Aug: StarPress: UPDATE: Power restoration for BSU area delayed past 6 p.m.
    by Robin Gibson
    MUNCIE, Ind. — Coincidentally around the same time as Monday’s eclipse, a power outage left about 2,900 customers in the dark in the general area of Ball State University and northwest Muncie.

    Estimated time for power restoration was initially listed on the I&M website as 4:30 p.m., then 6 p.m. Shortly after 6 p.m., the site simply listed “evaluating condition.” An I&M spokesman told The Star Press crews on the scene had determined it was a “transmission-level outage” and expected to have power restored soon, but couldn’t give a particular time.

    The outage hit around 1:25 p.m. Monday, the first day of classes for Ball State. By 3 p.m., an Indiana Michigan Power spokesman said a crew was on the scene but had not yet determined the cause.
    http://www.thestarpress.com/story/news/local/2017/08/21/lights-out-2-500-muncie-and-not-just-eclipse/587183001/

    link for following in right column of above:

    PIC: 21 Aug: StarPress: Hundreds gather at Ball State to watch the eclipse
    Ball State students and faculty gather on the University Green just next to Shafer Tower on Ball State’s campus for an eclipse watch party. ***Due to a power outage over 1,000 people crowded Ball State’s main avenue to see the event.

    ***seems to suggest Ball State didn’t have an outage.

    6 Aug: US News & World Report: AP: Ball State Smokestacks Coming Down After Geothermal Upgrade
    Workers have begun demolishing twin smokestacks at Ball State University that are the last vestiges of the campus’ one-time reliance on coal power
    The smokestacks were rendered obsolete by the university’s $83 million installation of a closed-loop geothermal energy system…
    The school shut down its four aging coal-fired boilers in 2014, but the Muncie campus continues to use natural gas-fired boilers to produce steam for heating and hot water…
    https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/indiana/articles/2017-08-06/ball-state-smokestacks-coming-down-after-geothermal-upgrade

    2 Aug: PV Magazine: Indiana’s solar market is still alive, for now
    Retail net metering will expire in three tiers, with the first one ending December 31.
    From outside the Midwest, one might not think of Indiana as much of a solar market. Yet the Hoosier State has over 254 MW installed, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association, almost as much as the combined capacity of the surrounding states of Illinois, Kentucky, Ohio and Michigan…

    21 Aug: EagleCountryOnline, Indiana: New Net-Metering Law Sparks Rush To Install Solar In Indiana
    By Veronica Carter
    Senate Bill 309 reduces the payback through net metering over time. Environmental groups and Hoosier Interfaith Power and Light (IPL), a faith-based organization that works to educate people about the need to conserve energy and go green, vigorously opposed it…
    “Because there are so many people who think it’s just a political issue and that it shouldn’t be talked about, because it’s been politicized by people who are climate deniers and don’t want us to do anything,” (Trisha Tull, IPL program facilitator) explains.
    Utility companies back the legislation, saying other customers currently are subsidizing solar users to be on the grid…
    “Because climate change is already affecting the poorest people in the world who have the least to do with creating the problems, it’s already affecting nature itself and it will be affecting future generations,” she states..

    12

  • #
    pat

    21 Aug: YouTube: 1min09secs: The Effect of a Solar Eclipse on Solar Production
    posted by Michael Hoybook
    I realize I haven’t done a video for awhile. We have been very busy settling into our new home and, at the same time, tweaking our off grid systems – including installing another 24 solar panels adding almost 7 KW to our total capacity. We brought this system online this last week. When I realized we were going to experience a partial solar eclipse today, I screen recorded our “Optics RE” system window in order to record the effect of this eclipse on our production. It’s a short video and speaks for itself. We had very few clouds until late afternoon so the output is only affected by the eclipse.
    ***Very drastic effect.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IoABE6TWqkU

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  • #
    ROM

    Sigh!
    To think of how simple life once used to be.
    We had a few big coal fired generators that just ran and ran night and day regardless of much else.

    The only thing that was going to upset and interrupt the supply of power was a strike like the 1949 coal miners strike or the 1960′s and 70′s regular strike threats from the unions.
    We got very annoyed about those strikers so they stopped threatening to strike and just got on with supplying power to all.
    And the power kept right on flowing.

    Now in this increasingly complicated world we have eclipses that might take out all the solar power we are told has become a vital element of our power production system.
    Even though that vital element of power production only works for 6 or 8 hours a day putting miniscule amounts of power into the grid.

    If we have too much wind or not enough wind that might take out the power when the big wind turbines don’t turn because of not enough wind or too much wind

    We have hackers, always anonymous and sometimes threatening who might take out all power by bringing down the grids control systems.

    We have back up batteries to back up the solar and wind power but which cannot restart a grid system if it goes black when the wind and solar fail to deliver power as they promised to do.

    We have demonstrations on how devastating the loss of power for an entire state can be through the good offices of the South Australian Premier Jay Weatherdill.

    Once upon a time the big generators just got on with the job of supplying cheap always there power in the amounts we wanted when we wanted it and they did it without bothering anybody or being bothered by do-gooders who knew a good thing when they saw it in those days of the past.

    Now we have politicians, academics, entrepreneurs for anything that will make them a buck regardless of the consequences , enquiries, lobbyists, greens, academics, do-gooders of every stripe and ignorance and etc, all telling the power generators how when where and why they should be generating power and how much they are allowed to generate and how much they are allowed to charge for the power they generate.

    We have lobby groups demanding that others pay for their solar panels and wind turbines so that they can reap the profits from the four trillion dollars worth of world wide subsidies over 30 years given to the renewable energy destroyers of that old completely reliable grid sand its cheapreliable power.

    And we have massive solar flares to worry about
    We have electromagnetic bombs to worry about if somebody big, ugly and nasty gets agitated and tries to bring the grid down.

    Sigh!
    The Good old days of ever reliable always cheap electrical power for everyone regardless is now gone.

    Instead a raging bout of utter insanity driven by further green and kook level insanities on climate change has stricken down the good common sense that for nearly a century gave us power that was cheap and completely reliable and on which the industry and commerce and business of Australia and the western world was constructed.

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    • #
      Annie

      I find it hard to believe they don’t know what they are doing to us. If it is wilful then it has to be defined as tre@s0n, does it not?

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      • #
        OriginalSteve

        You are correct.

        This is why I suspect they have spent a lot of time and money physically hardening Parl House in Canberra recently as they know what is coming……and its nothing to do with terrorism.

        It will be the likelyhood that the public may lynch the pollies ( and FYI – I do not condone such action )

        History says time and time and time again that if you tick the public off badly enough, things will not go well for those who have done such a deed.

        It also makes me wonder why they have so many brutal “anti-terror” laws, which may yet be aimed at the ticked off public ( possibly the actual intended targets ), with little need against actual terrorists. in other words, it may be that the pollies will go to ground in their bunker and allow the cops to legally shoot at protesters?

        Hope it never eventuates, but we live in weird times…..

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    • #
      el gordo

      ‘We have hackers, always anonymous and sometimes threatening who might take out all power by bringing down the grids control systems.’

      There would need to be a motive.

      This from last August, before the power outage to the Portland smelter in December.

      http://www.smh.com.au/business/energy/portland-smelters-future-in-doubt-with-axing-of-power-contract-20160811-gqqte0.html

      12

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        Not every grid control system is internet linked, in fact as far as i know, a lot of them arent, specifically for that reason.

        The use of Stuxnet to take down control systems overseas required someone locally on site to insert the virus into a physical computer for it to work.

        00

    • #
      Raven

      Sigh!
      The Good old days of ever reliable always cheap electrical power for everyone regardless is now gone.

      Diabolical, isn’t it – the den!al of dispatchability.

      The numpties think all electrons are equal, therefor solar/wind can be given priority access to the grid and the coal plants have to fill in the gaps . . . and pay for the privilege.
      Never mind that the “gaps” represent the vast majority of the whole.

      It’s a bit like renting out a room and the hippie tenants only wanting to pay for the time they spend there, and certainly not when they’re asleep.

      30

      • #
        ROM

        I really had to have quite a big laugh at my TWO red thumbers for my post at #15

        Somehow they seem to typify the almost pathological arrogance and straight out stupidity allied with a total ignorance of our society’s electrical supply system and how it works.

        They don’t ever seem to realise or are incapable of realising that they, those ignorant hubris laden green freaks and renewable energy innocents that are fuel and fodder for the renewable energy scammers who groom those slogan shouting green renewable energy supporting ignorants to follow the renewable energy scammer’s aims and goals of enriching themselves to the maximum at the citizens expense.

        I can only assume that the Red Thumbers want to see a lot of power failures in the near future and reckon we had it too good back when we had that oh so reliable and cheap power supplied to everybody regardless,

        That they enjoy fumbling around in the dark with no lights, no heating or cooling, no cooking facilities, no fuel for their vehicles even if they do make it to a servo, no traffic lights, no medical facilities or anmbulances or operating theatres , no food in the super markets, no refridgeration for food storage , no food in the markets as there will be no fuel to get sany food there. plus no fuel for harvesting food for market sales, no sewerage systems , no piped pressure fed water as the pumps won’t have any power, no lifts for those high rises and apartments, no heating for the coffee starter if you could find any coffee and etc and etc.

        That they don’t agree that electricity should be cheap and always be available and as much power as we might need as an industrialised nation and society.

        That they think anybody and everybody and every scammer and get rich quick merchant and renewable energy pusher and scammer should be allowed to interfere in the nation’s electrical power supply system and should have the right to tell the power generator operators how, when and how much power they are allowed to generate , if they are allowed to generate and how much they are allowed to charge for that power.

        That they are totally and complete and utterly ignorant in the extreme about how a national electrical supply system operates, not that that will stop them trying to tell the power system operators what they must and must not do and how they must or must not do it.
        That they believe a couple of old car batteries will drive Australia’s power supplies for a week or so if the wind doesn’t blow to turn those wind turbines or the skies are covered in cloud for a couple of weeks so the solar panels don’t produce any power.
        That you don’t need power stations, particularly coal fired power statiions at all the electrical power comes out of a three pin plug in the wall and the wall switch has all the power you need at the back of it.

        Those red thumbers attitudes are allied with a collossal ignorance allied again with pathalogical arrogance and a totally illogical hubris that they know it all, an attitude of the greens and climate change cultists that has led to the power situation we are now seeing.

        Such as South Australia being blacked out due to its renewable energy system failing even a moderate test of its stability when under some stress.

        And a good chance as Tony has described above of the entire Eastern grid and power supply system suffering a catastrophic failure with all the consquence that entails, consequence those Red Thumbers are just so damn dumb and stupid and so arrogant as to their own political correctness that they are like a couple of rabbits on a highway fixed in place by the oncoming trucks headlights.

        And those headlights are the potential major crash of the entire eastern Australian grid if a couple of the big coal fired power stations go off line for any number of possible and potential causes in the next couple of years.

        Keep Red thumbing, red thumbers because you really are proving that you and all your running dogs in the ignorant and arrogant and utterly illogical greens and sections of the media, plus the climate change cultists really don’t have a single clue at all as to what keeps the lights on and the wheels turning in our electrical energy reliant civilisation.

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        • #
          Annie

          I wonder whether any of our red thumbers live in tower blocks fitted with electrically operated lifts, central air conditioning and non-opening windows (for safety, don’t you know?) will be happy to work out how they will cope in a total blackout?

          20

          • #
            Annie

            And don’t suggest camping gas stoves and lights when you’ll have no ventilation! There is a difference between CO and CO2…did you red thumbers know that?

            10

  • #
    pat

    VIDEO: 2mins15secs: 22 Aug: TheWest: WA set to record second highest electricity prices in Australia
    by Shane Wright
    The average family will be slugged an extra $438 a year to meet the expenses
    The State Government is set to oversee the second highest electricity charges in the country after warnings its sharp increase in power access fees were hurting struggling families…

    While the Federal Government has focused its attention on power prices across the Eastern States, prices in WA have also been pushed up since the end of the carbon tax, lifting by almost 10 per cent. And they are forecast to continue climbing.

    According to the Australian Energy Market Commission, which has tracked prices across the country, WA will have the second highest price per kilowatt hour in the country by 2018-19. At more than 30 cents per kilowatt hour, only SA will have a higher price rate.
    The SA price is expected to fall over the next 18 months…

    AEMC has warned that even with higher prices, the Perth retail price was still short of the actual cost of supplying power across the city.
    “The retail price paid by consumers does not necessarily reflect underlying costs of supplying electricity, nor follow cost trends, because prices are set by the WA Government,” it said. Earlier this year, the State Government increased the electricity access charge by $169…

    Another issue is the Tariff Equalisation Contribution under which South West consumers subsidy(sic) Horizon Power customers. It costs South West power users $76 a year.
    “Given the horrific state of the finances the subsidy is not sustainable,” Mr Wyatt said.
    Western Australian Council of Social Service chief executive Louise Giolitto said there were already signs the $169 increase in the South West electricity access charge was hurting struggling families…

    Anglicare WA chief executive Ian Carter said in Perth’s northern suburbs, 30 per cent of people looking for assistance had struggled to pay a utility bill in the past six months.
    https://thewest.com.au/news/wa/families-feel-pain-of-power-price-surge-ng-b88570716z

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    • #
      OriginalSteve

      Maybe dopey australians will go eventually all Bolshie on those who have allowed such hikes in cost?

      I hope not, although human nature will only put up with so much before something gives….

      31

  • #
    pat

    21 Aug: GreensboroNews&Record: Eclipse delivers solar power outage, naturally
    by Doug Clark
    Duke Energy “lost about 1,700 megawatts of capacity during the height of the eclipse,” Randy Wheeless from its corporate communications office said in an email this afternoon.
    “Given the weather conditions, we should have expected 1,808 MW of solar output during the afternoon. But at the height of the eclipse, we were getting only about 109 MW.”

    He sent this quote from Sammy Roberts, director of system operations:
    ***“We were able to balance the Duke Energy system to compensate for the loss of solar power over the eclipse period. Our system reacted as planned, and we were able to reliably and efficiently meet the energy demands of our customers in the Carolinas.”

    Earlier, Duke had said it would ramp up production from its gas plants to fill the solar gap, which occurred over about two hours this afternoon…

    North Carolina is the nation’s No. 2 state in solar power capacity, and it lay in the zone of 90 percent-plus totality during the eclipse (100 percent in the far western region). So its power grid was more affected than any other state’s.
    http://www.greensboro.com/blogs/clark_off_the_record/eclipse-delivers-solar-power-outage-naturally/article_f83c734a-86bb-11e7-816b-67bf26eda36f.html

    ***why not spell it out, Sammy.

    11

  • #
    pat

    17 Aug: NoTricksZone: Russian Scientists Find ‘Appreciable Contribution’ From Natural Variability, Solar Forcing To Recent Warming
    By Kenneth Richard
    http://notrickszone.com/2017/08/17/russian-scientists-find-appreciable-contribution-from-natural-variability-solar-forcing-to-recent-warming/#sthash.DRFLHvZ8.dpbs

    21 Aug: ClimateDepot: Marc Morano: Harvard Physicist: “Climate Science In Serious Trouble”…”Really Dirty People Doing Bad Stuff”
    In a presentation (see below) Harvard astrophysicist Willie Soon came out blasting with both barrels at the corruption in climate science. He started by saying that any respectable scientist would say that the American National Academy of Science (NAS) is “ 100 percent corrupt ” and the climate scientists who put up the content at the NAS are “really dangerous”, likening their solution for global warming to amputating a patient’s arms and legs in order to cure his headache…LINK
    http://www.climatedepot.com/2017/08/21/harvard-physicist-climate-science-in-serious-troublereally-dirty-people-doing-bad-stuff/

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  • #

    Okay then, look at Joanne’s map for the eclipse, and note that the full eclipse path passes well to the North of California.

    Here is the link to the current ISO for California, showing the load curve for power generation. As they are in Summer over there, this is a typical Load Curve for the Summer Months, and while this is in real time, the graph below that one is for (whole of day) yesterday, and shows the generation across the whole day from Midnight back to Midnight.

    That top graph there (in real time) shows the dip in overall generation starting with the beginning of the eclipse, and you can see a definite drop in power generation, and here, you are looking at the solid bluey green line.

    It shows a drop of around 1600MW and while that may not seem much, that’s around 6% of power generation.

    If you scroll down a little to the third graph, that shows the output for just the solar power component, the yellow line and it’s a little difficult to see. That shows the drop, almost all of the drop on the main Load Curve, and it took two hours to get back to where it was originally.

    The graph below that shows the typical Insolation curve for Solar Power, and while it begins to deliver some power at around 7AM, it only delivers close to its full power for a couple of hours either side of midday.

    Tony.

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    • #
      toorightmate

      With the recent threats from NK, consideration is being given to changing the name of California to Guam.

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  • #
    clipe

    Funnily enough, that great engine of renewable energy, Niagara Falls, is dead-centre for the next Total Eclipse

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  • #
    pat

    something of a break-through at Financial Times? article is behind paywall:

    CarbonBrief: The hidden costs of renewable power – Financial Times, by Jonathan Ford
    Renewables benefit from “hidden extra transfers of wealth from the consumer”, writes Financial Times city editor Jonathan Ford in the Inside Business column. This involves an “underlying build-up of costs in the system as a whole”, he says, pointing to the costs of balancing wind and solar output. As Ford notes, a recent UK Energy Research Centre report – covered in detail by Carbon Brief – puts these costs at £10 per megawatt hour. He then cites much higher estimates from Gordon Hughes, a “former professor of economics” and, as Ford does not mention, a contributor to the climate sceptic lobby group the Global Warming Policy Foundation.

    Ford coins new phrase? ***herbivorous pension funds***:

    found elsewhere:

    The hidden costs of renewable power, by Jonathan Ford, Financial Times
    One of the less well-kept secrets in the renewables industry is the reason why funds that invest in these energy technologies can get away with offering such slender returns to their investors.

    Take Greencoat or The Renewable Infrastructure Fund, which between them own more than £2bn of renewable assets in the UK. These entities aim to offer returns of some 6 to 8 per cent to their backers. Compare that to conventional thermal-powered generators such as US-based Calpine, a listed group that achieved long-term average annual returns of 15 per cent.
    The answer is to be found in the government-backed contracts that assure renewable generators a market for any power they can produce at a guaranteed price.

    By taking away the market risk that any megawatt hours (MWh) produced by a wind turbine or solar panel cannot find a buyer, or might be unloaded at uncertain prices, the state enables owners to raise capital on enviably fine terms. Far from selling to flinty-eyed power investors, they can flog their wares to ***herbivorous pension funds, which view their shares as something close to high-yielding gilt-edged securities.

    And why not, you might say? Having set targets for decarbonisation, why not use government guarantees as a “costless” way to help meet them? As a renewables boss of my acquaintance put it to me when I asked him this question: “Isn’t it in everyone’s interest that these assets get built as cheaply as we can?”…

    But what if these state-backed transactions involved hidden extra transfers of wealth from the consumer to renewable generation technologies, and, worse, led to an underlying build-up of costs in the system as a whole?

    It is not in dispute that wind and solar impose additional expenses on the network. These range from the need to constrain excess production when the wind is blowing harder than expected (£82m paid to wind farms in 2016), or the sun suddenly appears (and vice versa when the opposite is the case), to having excess generation in the wrong part of the country, far from the sources of demand. They may require the system operator to pay certain wind farms not to produce, or gas-powered stations either to shut down or power up for a time, to balance the system. Either way, they place costs on the consumer which are socialised, meaning there is no incentive for the renewables participants to suppress the additional expenses their activities entail…

    A recent report by the UK Energy Research Centre, which tends to take a favourable view of renewables, suggested that it would amount to £10/MWh even if solar and wind production doubled from today. That’s not trivial when you consider that in 2016, the average wholesale market value of wind output was £38.50/MWh.

    But research by Gordon Hughes, a former professor of economics at Edinburgh university who is more sceptical, paints a much gloomier picture. He estimates the actual costs now amount to £22/MWh on average, which implies that the power for which the wholesale energy market paid £38.50/MWh was actually worth only £16.50 to it. Worse, he thinks the balancing costs will magnify as renewables become a bigger chunk of the system, rising perhaps to £80/MWh for “substantial periods of each year within 10 years”. In effect, that is a very substantial hidden subsidy for those technologies, on top of the overt ones they already receive…

    But a sensible mechanism would in any event put more of the balancing costs directly on those who cause them. Rather than giving renewables operators a free option to sell whatever they produce, it would oblige them to bid to deliver specific quantities of power at certain times of day, with penalties either way if they over- or under-delivered. That, after all, is what thermal generators do.

    Such reform might reveal something closer to the true cost of delivering renewable megawatt hours, while giving wind and solar farms incentives not to generate additional system expenses. It would also force renewables operators to justify more fully the low capital costs they enjoy.

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  • #
    pat

    behind paywall (have included a few lines found elsewhere:

    21 Aug: UK Times: Emily Gosden: Desert sun in Qatar too hot for solar panels to work
    Famed for its sunshine and high temperatures, Qatar might seem the ideal place to install solar panels, but as it looks to branch out into renewable energy, it has found that it is too hot for the panels to work properly.

    Summer temperatures that can reach 50C, combined with the build-up of dust, can reduce the efficiency of a photovoltaic panel by more than half…
    The Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute (QEERI) has about 40 researchers working on the issue in Doha, where it is testing panels from 27 international manufacturers…

    Marwan Khraisheh, acting executive director, said that the efficiency of some panels could decline by as much as 30 per cent because of the heat, as temperatures in the panels reached 75C.
    “Certain materials do not function as they are supposed to when the temperature increases, so the transport of electrons from one layer to another becomes less efficient,” he said.

    Most panels contained silicon layers but the team found that compounds with less pure silicon could be more resilient…
    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/business/desert-sun-in-qatar-too-hot-for-solar-panels-to-work-h23kmktbp

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    • #
      Robert Rosicka

      once the panel temp goes over 25 degrees you start losing efficiency big time , panels are tested in labs under strict conditions that only exist on the top of mountains in certain locations and rated as such .
      In the real world it doesn’t need to get real warm for a panel to exceed 25 degrees , always thought it was a scam how they do the ratings .

      11

  • #
    pat

    why bother with “unreliables”?

    (background: 35 Greenpeace activists were arrested last Thursday, and their boat seized; MSM was pretty much silent.)

    21 Aug: TheBarentsObserver: Greenpeace activists released after oil-protest
    Six activists, including the captain of “Arctic Sunrise”, have been fined for violating the safety zone around the Norwegian oil-rig in the Barents Sea.
    By Thomas Nilsen
    Each of the six activists got from 25,000 to 30,000 Norwegian kroner (€2,700 to 3,200) in fine by the police in Tromsø…
    It was last Thursday the activists protested the Norwegian oil company Statoil’s drilling in the Barents Sea…

    ***Statoil underscores that the world needs more energy than renewables can provide.
    “Even in the two-degree scenario, more oil is needed. That’s why we’re exploring for more fields,” the company argues…
    Statoil hopes to find big oil…
    https://thebarentsobserver.com/en/ecology/2017/08/greenpeace-activists-released-after-oil-protest

    21 Aug: Reuters: Diesel still needed to meet climate goals, Merkel says
    Reporting by Thomas Escritt; Editing by David Goodman
    BERLIN (Reuters) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned on Sunday against a swift abandonment of diesel cars after a series of emissions scandals, saying the fuel is still needed if climate change targets are to be met.

    Speaking at a pre-election town hall event on RTL television on Sunday, Merkel called on German carmakers, all of which have been caught using workarounds to cheat nitrogen emissions tests, to work to re-establish public trust in diesel.
    “We need diesel if we are to achieve our climate protection goals,” she said…
    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-germany-emissions-idUSKCN1B00QH?utm_campaign=trueAnthem:+Trending+Content&utm_content=5999ea4504d301630e4b49c4&utm_medium=trueAnthem&utm_source=twitter

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  • #
    pat

    21 Aug: UK Times: Earth moves for geothermal clean energy town Staufen as cracks appear
    by David Charter, Berlin
    More than 270 buildings have developed cracks after an attempt by a small town in the Black Forest to tap into geothermal energy far below ground.

    Drilling released groundwater under a central square in Staufen in Breisgau, in the southwestern corner of Germany. The town at first sank a few millimetres and then began to rise. A long crack opened up in the new town hall, the building which the authorities had wanted to be heated by the underground energy when drilling began in 2007.

    Michael Benitz, mayor of the town of 8,100 inhabitants, said that pumps would have to be used for “years or decades” to limit damage being caused by the leaking groundwater.
    “We have been in crisis mode for ten years,” …
    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/world/cracks-appear-in-staufen-s-geothermal-heating-plan-mdw9dx0lr

    18 Aug: The Local Germany:DPA/TheLocal: This historic German town is falling apart in ‘slow-motion catastrophe’
    A German town’s decision to invest in geothermal energy backfired badly after underground drilling went wrong and hundreds of buildings began to fall apart.

    Staufen, a town of 8,100 inhabitants on the edge of the Black Forest, envisioned a blissful new green energy future when work on the project began in 2007. But when the drills hit groundwater, the pretty Baden Württenburg hamlet instead found itself in a battle for survival.
    More than 270 buildings have suffered fractures since the drills penetrated a layer of earth and struck groundwater in a yard right behind the town hall.
    “We’ve been in crisis mode for ten years,” Mayor Michael Benitz told news agency DPA. “It’s a slow-motion catastrophe.”

    A red banner that hangs from the damaged town hall proclaims: “Staufen must not fall apart”.
    But in some cases it almost already has.
    “In combination with groundwater this layer of earth turns into cement, expanding the layers and forcing the earth upwards,” the mayor explained.
    ”In some places, Staufen has risen 62 centimetres and moved more than 45 centimetres sideways. This is causing some buildings to pull apart and crack.”

    Two houses have already had to be torn down and the town fears that more may need to be demolished to avoid collapse.
    “Fractures have become our daily companions” said Csaba-Peter Gaspar, an executive consultant whose own apartment in the town’s historic core has suffered major damage.
    A mediation body established to deal with the crisis, and the financial fallout for inhabitants, has so far received more than 400 claims…

    ***And the town is not alone in suffering this kind of damage. Geologists from the regional authorities in nearby Freiburg said similar scenes had unfolded in the towns of Böblingen and Rudersberg after geothermal drilling went wrong.
    It’s Staufen however that has really become a byword for failed geothermal drilling…

    In Staufen meanwhile pumps are in operation around the clock to dredge groundwater and minimize damage. This has reduced the buildup of cement, with the ground now rising at an average level of just 1.8 millimetres per month, compared to several centimetres in the initial phases.

    But nobody can say for sure how long the pumps will need to be deployed.
    “I’m working on the assumption that we’ll be grappling with this problem for several more years, probably even decades,” said the mayor.
    https://www.thelocal.de/20170818/this-historic-german-town-is-falling-apart-in-slow-motion-catastrophe

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    • #
      David-of-Cooyal-in-Oz

      Thanks Pat,
      I wonder if any of our main news sources feature this?
      I don’t think I’ll start counting…
      Cheers,
      Dave B

      12

  • #
    pat

    Norway relentlessly committed to “green”!
    greenbacks from fossil fuels, more likely:

    19 Aug: UK Telegraph: Jillian Ambrose: Norway embarks on mission improbable
    Norway’s plans are audacious. Its government believes that within the next five years it will be able to develop a system to rid the whole of Europe of its unwanted carbon emissions.
    Under the scheme, CO2 from factories all across Europe could soon be piped on to ships and brought to Norway. Cutting-edge carbon storage sites will then inject the gas deep into salt caverns under the seabed.
    The individual elements of this chain are technically proven but carbon capture and storage (CCS) has so far failed to gain traction across Europe. Investors have balked at the eye-wateringly high costs and daunting risks…

    Norway itself uses hydropower to meet 90pc of its electricity needs.
    ***Its relentless commitment to “green” innovation means it has a carbon footprint so small it would only need to use 1pc of its subsea storage – so it is calling on Europe to use the salt caverns too, and has found a receptive audience…

    Norway is the UK’s largest foreign source of gas. It also relies heavily on its oil and gas exports to fuel its wealthy economy and support almost 200,000 jobs. Last year oil and gas exports accounted for NOK350bn, or £34bn, of which gas was worth almost £12bn. Its prized natural resource is expected to gush at record rates this year after the Norwegian government raised a production cap at its giant Troll gas field…
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/08/19/norway-embarks-mission-improbable/

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  • #
    John of Cloverdale, WA, Australia

    When the Sun stops:
    “…. and the Sun has perished out of heaven,
    and an evil mist hovers over all.”
    Homer, The Odyssey, with an English Translation by A.T. Murray (1919).
    Said to refer to the total solar eclipse of 16 April 1178 BC.

    21

  • #
    Robert Rosicka

    OT but just heard on the ABC radio so it must be true , fish are getting smaller because of CAGW , all fish with gills will get up to 30% smaller with every one degree of a warming ocean .
    First thing I thought of was Barramundi which only like the warmer water and shutdown during the cooler months .

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    • #
      Dennis

      I heard an extreme Green a few years ago on talkback radio complaining about the hundreds of fish limit.

      Her rant was countered by a member of the sports fishing association who pointed out that there is catch limit per species, that fish species do not inhibit the same locations, and that to catch the combined bag limit would be impossible, even using executive jet transportation and waiting ready to go fishing water transport.

      30

  • #
    pat

    as seen on ABC Just In page:

    ‘Making money from the sun’: SA solar installations jump
    By Chris McLoughlin and Nick Harmsen

    changed to, but still shilling for the solar industry!

    22 Aug: ABC: Solar installation in South Australia boosted by government feed-in tarriff
    By Chris McLoughlin and Nick Harmsen
    Updated about 7 hours ago
    South Australia’s solar energy installations have hit a level not seen since 2012, when generous feed-in tariffs were still offered by the State Government.

    SunWiz, an organisation that tracks solar industry activity, has reported an 84 per cent leap in South Australian businesses investing in solar generation.

    Managing director Warwick Johnston said installation was at record levels across Australia.
    “Every area is going gangbusters at the moment,” he said…

    Mr Johnston said solar installation work was popular in Adelaide’s CBD, the Adelaide Hills and parts of the Riverland.

    He said commercial-scale systems were the fastest-selling segment, with shopping centres and supermarkets investing in solar to help cover their steadily rising power costs.

    “The best time to be generating solar power is when you are consuming electricity, and so if you’re a business operating during daylight hours that’s when the sun’s shining and you’ll be making money from the sun,” Mr Johnston said.

    Nearly 9,000 solar generation units have been sold in SA in the past year, which is more than double the rate of two years earlier.

    Mr Johnston said cheaper equipment also made solar energy a more attractive business proposition…

    Australia’s only solar panel manufacturer, Tindo Solar, also said business was booming across the board.
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-08-22/solar-installation-reaches-new-levels-in-south-australia/8829002

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    • #
      Sceptical Sam

      If you observe carefully below this comment No 28 of Pat’s, which she posted at 5:07 pm, you’ll see that there are no red thumbs.

      Hypotheses:

      H0: Gramsci-greens and other snowflakes are put to bed at 5:00 o’clock with their toy teddies.

      H1: Gramsci-greens and other snowflakes are busy looking for their teddies at 5:00 o’clock so that they can hug it and feel safe when they eventually go to bed.

      20

  • #
    JoKaH

    As Bolt points out this eclipse also turns out to be quite r@acist!!

    20

  • #
    pat

    21 Aug: SanJoseMercuryNews: from WaPo: California goes dark without going dark
    by Dino Grandoni
    Electric grid operators at the California Independent System Operator (CAISO), which delivers 80 percent of the electricity in a state that has more solar energy capacity than every other state in the country combined, watched intently as solar generation began collapsing here at 9 a.m. Pacific Standard Time as the shadow of the moon swept from west to east across the United States…

    In California, hydroelectric and natural gas-fired power plants, along with power drawn from seven surrounding Western states as part of preexisting agreements, stepped in to make up for the loss of between 3,000 to 3,500 megawatts in solar power, according to initial estimates from the CAISO. For a cloudless August day, the grid operator estimated a loss of about 6,000 megawatts from both solar panels owned by homeowners and utility-scale solar facilities.

    Nature helped, even if it blotted out the sun in the first place. The weather was generally mild statewide, meaning fewer Californians likely turned on their air conditioners…

    In North Carolina, Duke Energy readied natural gas-fired generators to make up for lost solar power in a state second only to California in total solar capacity. Though only the western toe of the Tar Heel State saw a total eclipse, Duke, the state’s main electricity supplier, lost 1,700 of its 2,500 megawatts of solar capacity at its height…

    Grid managers in both California and North Carolina occasionally deal with solar dips of this magnitude. What made the eclipse more challenging than usual was the rate at which solar generation ramped down – and then ramped back up…
    Unlike lumbering nuclear and coal-fired plants, gas-fired generators can be turned on quickly during cloudy days to meet electricity demand when solar energy is compromised…

    In the coming weeks and months, grid operators hope to analyze data collected on Monday to see how electric grids that rely on wind and solar generation affects more common but less predictable sun-obscuring events, like thunderstorms…

    Solar operators are beginning to develop weather forecasts tailored for solar generation.
    “The normal weather forecast is basically used for temperature and rain,” said Charlie Gay, director of the Solar Energy Technologies Office for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. “We look at how much light is reflected from clouds in order to know how much light reaches the ground.”
    http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/08/21/california-goes-dark-without-going-dark/

    10

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    pat

    21 Aug: SanFranciscoChronicle: CA officials: Grid is fine despite loss of solar power
    By David R. Baker
    As expected, the sun’s temporary disappearing act plunged the state’s solar farms into semi-darkness, just when they’d normally be revving up. At the control center for California’s electricity grid, in Folsom, display screens showed solar generation plummeting as the eclipse neared its mid-morning peak.

    Yet the grid managers with the California Independent System Operator were ready, having spent more than a year planning for the event. No blackouts plagued the state, officials said. Hydroelectric dams, and power plants burning natural gas, helped make up the slack from darkened solar panels…

    “I’ve never considered myself a science geek, but I’m totally geeking out on this,” said Lynsey Paulo, spokewoman for Pacific Gas and Electric Co…

    Californians have bolted enough small solar arrays to their homes and businesses to generate a large amount of power, about 5,800 megawatts of electricity. Not only did the state lose much of the output from its big solar facilities, but solar homes also needed to draw more power from the grid, since their own panels were sitting in semi-darkness. In the eco-friendly Bay Area, for example, sunlight dimmed by up to 76 percent (though the fog provided plenty of obscurity anyhow).

    As a result, just as the eclipse started cutting the amount of electricity flowing onto the grid from big solar power plants, solar homes began sucking more power from the grid, about 1,365 megawatts more than usual, according to the system operator. Overall demand on the grid was expected to rise 4 percent to 8 percent as a result.

    It could have been worse. The actual path of totality, the 70-mile-wide zone where the moon completely blots out the sun, passed north of California, meaning every part of the state experienced at least partial sunlight…

    Some California officials had called for state residents to conserve electricity during the eclipse, hoping to avoid firing up fossil fuel power plants and pumping more greenhouse gases into the sky. They even asked people and businesses to pledge online to save energy during the event…
    Many Californians apparently didn’t notice. By Monday morning, only 846 people and businesses had made the power-saving pledge online.
    http://www.sfgate.com/business/article/CA-officials-Loss-of-solar-power-in-eclipse-11947350.php

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    pat

    22 Aug: Moneycontrol: Here’s how the solar eclipse affected solar power generation in California
    The drop in power generation was more than projected but the output was restored by 12 o’clock later in the day
    The power output dropped by 3,400 megawatts during the solar eclipse. The data provided by California Independent System Operator (CAISO), a non-profit organisation which manages 80 percent of the electricity supplies in the state shows that the slide in the output started slightly after 9 o’clock in the morning and kept dropping until past ten.
    GRAPH CAPTION: Renewable energy output on August 21, California. The yellow curve above corresponds to solar power output throughout the day. Credit: CAISO

    The drop was more than CAISO had projected. The output was completely restored by 12 o’clock and the panels started generating power as usual…
    http://www.moneycontrol.com/news/business/heres-how-the-solar-eclipse-affected-solar-power-generation-in-california-2366103.html

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    Dennis

    Australia now first in highest electricity pricing, second Denmark and third Germany.

    The OECD reports that Australia has only 4.6% renewable (so called) energy, last reported 2015.

    And standard of living now 12th in the OECD 38 member list.

    However, when Labor left government in 1996 Australia was 13th, and in 2006 a year before the Howard government lost office in November 2007, Australia was in 8th place for standard of living.

    We are sliding backwards voters.

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    Dennis

    Note: Howard Coalition government 1996 to 2007.

    Rudd-Gillard-Rudd Labor government 2007 to 2013.

    Abbott-Turnbull Coalition government 2013-2017 (Abbott 2013-2015).

    http://www.cleanenergyregulator.gov.au/RET/About-the-Renewable-Energy-Target/History-of-the-scheme

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    ROM

    Well down goes another one!

    Via the GWPF

    Alevo, the american lithium battery maker has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy.

    Alevo once touted its technology on its website, claiming to bring “the first inorganic lithium battery to the commercial marketplace, bringing unprecedented attributes to the energy storage market. Due to its inorganic nature, the battery is non-flammable and creates minimal internal resistance.” It also claimed the batteries had/were:

    High discharge power rates and high pulse current conducive to electric grid applications;
    Fully dischargeable – the only lithium battery that offers 100% Depth of Discharge (DOD);
    Highly durable – can tolerate extreme temperature swings; and
    No calendric aging and can be stored in a complete discharged state.

    Apparently, however, the market didn’t accept Alevo’s claims of technological superiority, which led to the bankruptcy filing last week.

    Four trillion dollars put into Renewable energy and into the Grid build to cater for the low concentrated power output of renewable energy since year 2000.

    And still they fall over despite this immense publicly funded largesse for which there is increasing evidence of an entire lack of any semblence of accountability as to where all this money has dissapeared to in the renewable energy industry.

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    richard verney

    Dr Roy Spencer on his blog has an article on the eclipse, and he measured the temperature change and sets out a plot of the profile.

    It is well worth a quick look.

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    pat

    22 Aug: EconomicTimesIndia: India’s dependence on coal to continue despite thrust on renewables
    By Vishwa Mohan, TNN
    NEW DELHI: Even as India has made a considerable push towards renewable sources of energy keeping in view its Paris Agreement goal, the country’s dependence on coal as primary source of energy will continue as its ‘social cost’ is quite less as compared to that of solar and wind.
    The government has brought in the ‘social cost’ element in its latest Economic Survey which noted the importance of renewables but suggested a cautious approach, saying investments in renewable energy be made at a “calibrated pace” looking into the total cost accrued to the society.

    The ‘social cost’ is calculated while factoring in private costs of electricity generation, opportunity cost of land, health costs as well as the costs of stranded assets of the conventional energy generation plants if it become idle due to shift to renewables.
    The survey calculated the ‘social cost’ of renewables at Rs 11 per KWh which, it claimed, is three times that of the coal in 2017 and the gap would reduce only when the country progresses towards the year 2030…

    The government’s chief economic advisor Arvind Subramanian, while delivering Darbari Seth Memorial lecture on last Thursday, too spoke about this scenario when he noted that the coal continues to be “a very cheap way of providing energy to hundreds of millions who are still energy-deprived”.

    He said though renewables were part of the energy answer, it came with “hidden cost” which must not be overlooked in the country’s headlong embrace of renewables.
    “Current bids on renewables are not especially revealing or informative about the true costs because of extensive subsidies (implicit and overt, awarded by centre and states) and strategic behaviour by producers.” …ETC
    http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/environment/developmental-issues/indias-dependence-on-coal-to-continue-despite-thrust-on-renewables/articleshow/60173347.cms

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    pat

    22 Aug: RenewEconomy: Giles Parkinson: Victoria to unveil wind and solar tenders in push for 40% renewables
    The Victoria government is expected to outline details of its major tenders for new wind and solar capacity on Wednesday morning, as well as reaffirming its 40 per cent renewable energy target for 2025 and putting more meat on its policy.
    An event to be headed by premier Daniel Andrews and energy minister Lily d’Ambrosio will likely outline the details of the first major auction to be held later this year, as the state goes about the task of adding more than 5,000MW of large-scale wind and solar capacity over the next eight years.
    Further details of the architecture of the long-awaited Victoria Renewable Energy Target legislation could also be released…

    The Victoria government has been busy preparing for the target, and is working with AEMO to ensure that planned wind and solar farms do not overload the current network in the west of the state, and are accompanied with either network upgrades or battery storage…
    (AEMO boss Audrey Zibelman will be attending and speaking at the event.)

    A couple of other tenders have already been announced, and the winners may also be revealed on Wednesday: these include tenders for two 20MW battery storage installations with up to 100MWh capacity in western Victoria, as well as the tender for 75MW of solar capacity to power the Melbourne tram network…

    Other developments are also taking place, such as the 530MW Stockyard Hill wind farm to be built at a record-low cost of less than $55/MWh, and three large solar farms. Many others are in the pipeline, including a proposed $2 billion offshore wind farm…

    South Australia premier Jay Weatherill on Tuesday warned that states would “go it alone” on a clean energy target, if the Turnbull government did not overcome its hard right rump and push through such a policy…
    Queensland also has a 50 per cent renewable energy target for 2030, and while it is yet to release its legislation, it is experiencing a massive boom in large-scale solar thanks to the LRET and interest from local and international companies.
    The Northern Territory is also looking at a 50 per cent renewable energy target for 2030, and its proposed pathway is expected to be released soon…
    http://reneweconomy.com.au/victoria-unveil-wind-solar-tenders-push-40-renewables-78135/

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    pat

    lengthy, plus links to report:

    21 Aug: Bloomberg: Switch to Renewables Won’t End the Geopolitics of Energy
    Countries that dominate the export of rare-earth minerals will be the petrostates of tomorrow.
    by Meghan L. O’Sullivan
    (Meghan L. O’Sullivan is a Bloomberg columnist and the Jeane Kirkpatrick Professor of the Practice of International Affairs at Harvard University’s Kennedy School. She served on the National Security Council from 2004 to 2007, and was deputy national security adviser for Iraq and Afghanistan.)

    In another sign that the age of fossil fuels is waning, the California State Senate has passed a bill to commit the state to use 100 percent renewable energy for power by 2045. Other states and cities — including Massachusetts, Chicago and Atlanta — intend to make similar switches. Proponents highlight a bevy of ways in which the Age of Renewables will improve our lives: lower carbon emissions, cheaper electricity rates, new abilities to bring power to impoverished nations … and independence from the economic and political entanglements of volatile global oil and gas markets…

    Why won’t an embrace of solar, wind and the like relieve us of all such geopolitical concerns? First, a shift to renewables in the power grid, as with the California plan, will only go so far until our transportation sector is radically changed by electric cars becoming more of the norm. As long as most of the energy used in transportation is petroleum-based, more renewables will have little impact on the geopolitics of oil (or its consumption)…

    The ways in which a future more dependent on renewables will bring both good and bad geopolitical karma is the subject of a new report (LINK) I issued with David Sandalow of Columbia University and Indra Overland of the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs…READ ON
    https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2017-08-21/switch-to-renewables-won-t-end-the-geopolitics-of-energy

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    john

    Wind turbine catches fire at nuclear power plant.

    http://www.asahi.com/sp/ajw/articles/AJ201708220035.html

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    RAH

    I’m sure some of you are familiar with Dr. Roy Spencer. Worth your time to read his blog about the eclipse.

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2017/08/total-eclipse-from-center-hill-lake-tn/

    This truck driver happened to be trucking north on I-55 in southern Illinois at the right time yesterday to catch totality. Pulled off on a ramp and watched for about 5 minutes as totality passed and then hit the road again to keep ahead of the masses that would be heading home. It was the 2nd total solar eclipse I have observed in my 62 years. If I’m still around on April 8, 2024 I will get another chance. The band of totality will be passing right over my house in Indiana.

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    The Deplorable Vlad the Impaler

    Casper, Wyoming: 2 minutes 24 seconds of totality

    It was the most awesome thing I’ve ever seen; we had a few very high cirrus clouds, and they were not an impediment to the view.

    Had to share this one, however:

    “How does the Moon cut his hair?”

    ‘E clips’

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    Rud Istvan

    We had about 88% of totality here in Fort Lauderdale. Used pinhole viewer. Fortunate the onshore wind kept clouds to our west. The temperature drop was noticable. And, the onshore wind died as maxim parial approached, proof of temp drop. The afternoon omshore winds are caused by the land heating creating convection (and our usual late afternoon Tstorms), so the cooler ocean air moves in over the land. Is why summer afternoon windsurfing and kiteboarding are so popular here.

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    Roy Hogue

    And it came and went and, lo, as though by divine providence, everyone lived through it without any incident I’ve found any report of.

    I was told by a friend that in Oregon along the path of the total eclipse there wasn’t a motel room to be had and some were charging as high as $900/night. Give me back global warming. ;-)

    So much fuss and bother over seeing something that lasts 3 hours — it’s only been going on for billions of years.

    And the power grid is still here. :-)

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    ROM

    A long time ago in my youthful years, a solar eclipse was something to marvel at and to get the old timers talking about the eclipses they had seen or their parents had seen.

    Something that the generations that had gone before had marvelled on and passed those thoughts onto the later generations.

    But it was another entirely natural phenomena that everybody took in their stride albeit with great interest and curiosity.

    Some of the keenest and most interested laypeople and the scientifically curious even drove a couple of hundred or so kilometres to be in the path of Totality.

    Now another eclipse in this age of mass urbanisation and the disappearance of natural phenomena as a central part of the urban dwellers understanding of Nature allied with the city centric, cloistered from natural phenomena thinking across the USA and the western world means that a common eclipse as seen so regularly and so often by untold generations past has taken on almost mythical qualities.

    And the prophets of doom, disaster, disastrous changes and end of times are in their element as they prey upon the unbounded ignorance of the almost complete whole of today’s urban citizens. Who limited and severely constrained in their thinking and in their understanding by their narrow city centric experience of Life have lost sense of the realities of Nature and her entirely natural phenomena, a loss of reality and understanding of Nature’s ever changing, ever unpredictable but always overwhelming power and influence, a loss of understanding that has now become the hallmark of the present generations.

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      RAH

      But this eclipse had people, millions upon millions of them, turn out to look to the heavens that many I’m sure hardly ever do. Traffic was very heavy in the zone of totality in western KY and southern IL where I was.

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    sophocles

    Jo wrote:

    Looks like it is being marketed as some kind of dummy run to “prove” intermittent energy will not hurt the grid when it “takes over”?

    and

    These stories of fear of a grid breakdown or “whiplash” have been going on for months:

    You’ve got to admit that some Americans take their ‘scare campaigns’ very seriously. This reminds me of the Y2K `problem’ which was never going to be a problem but was hyped into one. While not quite the same and without the decade of lead-in Y2K had, the `dangers’ of the eclipse have a familiar flavour. I wonder how many survivalists took to the forests for the duration …

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