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Extraordinary powers triggered: Blackout threat from rooftop solar panels in Western Australia

Solar Panels, Rooftops, Perth.

Panels are going in everywhere in Perth.

In Western Australia the uptake of solar panels has rocketed as electricity prices leaped — there’s a slow motion solar train-wreck underway. Solar PV panels are now on more than one in four houses and growing at a phenomenal rate.

The South West Grid is small, with around one million customers and a daily peak of around 2 – 3,000 MW. But the solar generation now totals as much as 1,000MW, and is growing at blistering 180MW a year. Already, there are times solar can be the largest “single” source on this grid, and the AEMO has no control over it, which is why emergency notices are being issued more and more. The AEMO suggests the answer is more batteries, but we are still subsiding the installation of these unnecessary panels making the problem worse, and electricity prices are forecast to rise another 7% this year. As readers TomOMason and TonyfromOz say, so much for cheap solar — watch out: “Batteries Not Included”. The hidden costs get you every time, and the cost of the impact on the rest of the grid is only becoming known as we do this live experiment.

Solar panels are becoming an emergency in WA, equivalent to a bushfire

The growth of panels is so disruptive the AEMO sometimes has to invoke the “hisk risk state” and force the baseload coal and gas generators off the grid for fear of an overload. This is supposed to be something triggered only in exceptional circumstances. The rapid change to the grid generation will create a regular state of emergency in WA in a few years unless something changes.

Rooftop solar poses blackout threat to WA’s main power grid

Daniel Mercer in The West Australian

Extraordinary powers designed for emergencies such major power plant failures or bushfires are being triggered to protect WA’s main grid from soaring output generated by rooftop solar panels.

In comments to a Parliamentary inquiry, the body that runs the south-west electricity system has warned the market can no longer cope with the solar power being pumped out during certain conditions.

Experts have warned a looming crunch may lead to increased risks of blackouts and higher power costs for consumers.

There is now almost 1000MW of solar powered generation across the south west interconnected system — the biggest single source on the grid — with about 200,000 installations on households.

Solar spells “disastrous” trends for conventional power stations

From a January news report: Solar may overwhelm the WA Grid

Daniel Mercer in The West Australian, Jan 8th, 2018

It is believed solar power could displace 100 per cent of traditional generation such as coal- and gas-fired plants for short intervals within as few as five years based on current trends.

While this would happen initially only during specific weather conditions, such as mild, sunny days when demand for electricity was low but production from solar panels was high, the trend could be disastrous for conventional power stations.

This is one of the hidden costs of solar power.

The uptake of solar panels here has accelerated due to painful electricity prices and an ongoing subsidy. Here in the sunny state they work well but not well enough to make them worth installing without the subsidy. If they aren’t economic in most of WA, they won’t be economic anywhere other than remote off-grid locations.

In the even smaller North-West grid of Western Australia, the powers-that-be have limited the uptake of solar subsidies in Broome to 10% of the towns power for fear of grid fluctuations. (Thanks to RickWill for reminding me).

The SWIS grid is not connected to the whole NEM in Australia. The market rules are different, so is the structure. It’s largely government controlled. Therefore I’m very interested in hearing from anyone with insight into our system. Please, if you can help, get in touch through comments below or email joanne at this site domain.

h/t to Vic, Pat

Other posts on Solar Power

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Extraordinary powers triggered: Blackout threat from rooftop solar panels in Western Australia, 9.6 out of 10 based on 66 ratings

197 comments to Extraordinary powers triggered: Blackout threat from rooftop solar panels in Western Australia

  • #
    Greg Cavanagh

    I would be getting out of SA asap.

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    • #
      sophocles

      This is WA Jo’s talking about not SA, but it applies across all states.

      NZ is going down the roof-top power route with power companies paying for solar contributions. That will last for a few years before becoming uneconomic. My electric power cost has doubled over the last 12 months. I’m now considering Solar with the generated power going to my hot water cylinder rather than running the whole house from it. It’s simpler than routing the water through a roof-top heater panel and I won’t have to worry about frosts splitting the tank. I’ve always been able to isolate that from the mains.

      I can see households with PV roofs here having to install a remotely operated relay to their rooftop panels so they can be ‘switched off’ or disconnected under the control of the retailer, similar to the ripple switching control of electric hot water cylinders.

      It’s also going to be interesting to see what effect the weather the coming cooling is going to bring will have. Auckland can have two or more weeks of continuous overcast at this time of the year (May). We did in the 1960s and middle 1970s.

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      • #
        Greg Cavanagh

        Ah, what difference morning and a coffee make. I opened up Jonova and read the leading post, only to realise that this was WA. Not what I would have expected from WA.

        So what state in Australia isn’t going down this route? I haven’t heard anything from NT. Anybody got the goss on this one?

        30

        • #
          PeterS

          The whole nation is going own the renewables path and anti-coal fired power station plan because they are in effect forced to do so. In case no one hasn’t noticed it, the LNP has been in government for several years now and the problem is theirs but they don’t want to fix it. Our only hope, and it’s a small one, is for the ACP and ON together to hold the balance of power. It’s up to the voters and no one else to make it happen.

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          • #
            ROM

            I will butt in at the top just to comment that NO WHERE and at NO time has the Australian public ever been given a chance or a choice by the politicals to vote on whether they want Renewable Energy with all its immense costs and unreliability and personal traumas for those at the bottom of the social and income scale , the intermittent supply, the ugly bird shredders increasingly dominating the skyline in many parts of rural Australia , the tens aof hecrtares of glass panels that along with the toxic chemicals used in their creation will after a couple of decades or less be abandoned by the promoters leaving the very dangerous shattered glass eyesores to be cleaned up by the citizens of the area, all of which is completely integral to the so called “renewable energy” scam.

            NO WHERE has there been a fully open and frank discussion and openly public debate ALLOWED by the political apparatchiks, most particularly the MSM with the ABC being by far the worst offender with its rabidly green agenda, the academic bubble dwellers and green watermelon elitist cabal of useless public money spongers and a whole raft of somewhat unhinged promoters of the dangers of the so called and assumed but never proven humanity’s effects on the global climate, the supposedly deadly but still unmeasured and unproven after two decades of immense expenditures of public monies, the so called in the past , “global warming” which the modellers and associated academic know it alls with social science degrees so confidently predicted based on their models but which never happened but which was then morphed into the indescribable and completely amorphous “Climate change” all used to literally skim what now probably runs close to a couple of trillion dollars of mankind’s wealth into the pockets of a small cabal of morally and ethically free psychopathic scammers of the worst kind.

            An entire major industry, the so called Renewable Energy industry that has been created at the behest and with the support of the politicians and media based entirely on public monies extorted by the politicals from the citizenery without ever bringing it to the public for their edification and for their acceptence or otherwise. Or allowing a public debate to take place on the benefits and drawbacks of the so called renewable energy , drawbacks and much worse which are really beginning to appear and which will spell the end of renewable energy by 2030.
            Renewable energy for which the rationale has never been proven or hard provable evidence produced in any way to justify in any way the creation of this mega billion dollar industry which is at best described as an utterly useless devourer of resources and the destroyer of the environment and the social order andd the economical advancement of a nation and its industry and a product of closed, extremely narrow and inflexible cult following minds .

            An industry founded on nothing more than assumptions, guesses, altered and f**&*$&* data and models that even the modellers themselves are now saying cannot and never have correctly predicted the global climatic changes or even the onset of the climate altering El Nino and La Nina phenomena of the Pacific that have taken place over the last two decades.

            Viewed from this angle there is literally not a single valid reason or proven justification yet in existence that can justify the very existence of the Renewable Energy industry.
            Which maybe is why the public have never ever been allowed to have any say on if and why the renewable energy industry should be allowed to exist let alone grasping in its extreme greed, vast sums of public finance showered onto it by lascivious brown paper bag toting politicians and the media using the public’s money to finance their cultish trending fancies and ideologies.

            50

    • #
      Roy Hogue

      I would be getting out of SA asap.

      But Greg, where would you run to? Where would you go that this nonsense would not follow you?

      The sages of Sacramento are willing to make a whole state jump off this cliff by requiring all new housing constructed after a certain date to have solar panels on the roof.

      They want to outlaw the sale of cars with internal combustion engines — which so far has failed to pass but this infection has the world in it’s grip and they will eventually try it. Of course there are 200 miles or more of desolate desert between civilization along the Southern California coast and the Colorado River and more of the same in Arizona before you get to civilization again and it has yet to be shown that an electric vehicle can make it that far. Maybe at a snails pace you could do it but the trip will take days — days in blistering sun with air conditioning either being absent or something you don’t dare use. Welcome to the days of the stagecoach.

      I suppose you could put charging stations every 50 miles or so but then you need to answer the question, how long does it take to recharge the battery? Answer, hours. And with the present volume of traffic (and I actually drove this route only a few years ago) you will need either hundreds of chargers per location or armed guards to prevent violence (remember, we once had someone shot over a few gallons of gas, when the oil barons decided to stick it to us).

      And then, yes boys and girls, you still need those generators running to charge up those EVs because the catch is that they will be on the charger overnight. Oops, no sun to get any power from.

      Where can you run to escape this?

      Solar panels, windmills, electric cars…it’s all pure lunacy. But it’s taking over the thinking of those who rule over us, people we elected to do a much better job of managing the people’s business, their welfare and their very lives in some cases than they’re doing.

      You can lead a fool to the truth but you cannot make him believe it. It’s the old horse to water metaphor writ large, dangerously large.

      As long as the voters think only of their own benefit nothing will improve. It will get worse. We are the fools who refuse to even talk about the truth. We are the fools who put the government in place everywhere in the western world. We are the people who do not understand more about electricity that it takes to turn the lights on and off. As Pogo Possum said,

      We have met the enemy and he is us.

      And there is nowhere to run to, only places to run from.

      If I sound pessimistic and cynical it’s because what I just said is the picture unfolding in front of me every damn day.

      290

      • #
        Roy Hogue

        The human race has apparently elevated itself way above its level of competence. The Peter Principle is alive and well. Take your pick of reading material.

        120

        • #
          Roy Hogue

          And sitting here at the keyboard thinking about the problems I see, I’m not even close to being sure I could cope with the job of managing life in the 21st Century. At best I can hope to make good decisions for myself and my wife. But what does the future look like? I don’t know and all I can do is guess based on what I see right now.

          50

      • #
        Greg Cavanagh

        Roy; the last several years I’ve been scouring the globe looking for the best place to emigrate to. At this point in time, the East side of Russia is looking the best. It’s the opposite side of the country to Moscow, and there are lots of nudist colonies there. I feel this is perhaps the last place in the world where the government leaves you alone to do your own thing.

        40

        • #
          Roy Hogue

          I feel this is perhaps the last place in the world where the government leaves you alone to do your own thing.

          Not to mention the nudists of course. ;-)

          But isn’t the winter a little on the frigid side there? On the other hand, maybe the government types like it warmer in the winter and that’s why they’re not around to bother anyone.

          40

        • #
          PeterF

          and when the government turns off the district heating system or forgets to plough the roads in winter or maintain the government owned health and telephone systems or stops subsidising food an freight what will you do.

          00

      • #
        PeterS

        Roy the solution is extremely simple. All voters have to do is vote for the ACP and ON above all others. If enough do it they can hold the balance of power and perhaps turn things around. It’s the only way and in fact it’s our democratic duty to do so if we dare to use it.

        50

        • #
          Roy Hogue

          Peter,

          You’re right. They could. And yet they don’t. And I have no idea how to change that. But I know why they don’t. Thy’re spending their time paying attention to everything but what their government is doing to them. And by the time it’s painful they still only gripe and complain about it more than they get together and decide to do something about it.

          20

      • #
        Mickey Reno

        Maybe instead of running from a place, running for office should be the slogan. I’m simply amazed that, given all the pressure for it, Australia does not have a new Zero Renewable Energy Target Conservative party.

        Yeah, that’s the ticket (pun intended). Run for office for the new ZRET Conservatives.

        10

    • #
      Geoff

      Without 500 MW generators there is just not enough inertia in the WA system to avoid systemic frequency drift as smaller power sources snap in and out of the grid. Batteries at a household level will not fix this problem.

      If users want solar power they should pay for it. This means they pay more than users who do not want it, not less. The added cost reflects the grid battery requirement.

      120

      • #
        PeterF

        It would be good if you could give us a technically valid explanation for your assertion.As SA and Ireland have discovered and even coal and gas plants in Germany and the UK have found, batteries can stabilise frequency an order of magnitude faster than gas turbines. The inertia in the power system comes from generators, load and the transmission system, changing the configuration of the generators does not significantly alter the inertia. Properly configured wind farms have 2-5 times the inertia of gas turbines.
        The argument that the system needs the same inertia as it did many years ago is about as valid saying steam and diesel engines need big flywheels because that is what they had in the 1960′s

        10

      • #
        Richard of NZ

        Perhaps the requirement should be that anyone going the rooftop solar route has to disconnect from the grid. This should leave the normal people with a stable supply system.

        10

  • #
    robert rosicka

    I expect a lot of this sort of thing in the future , the law of unintended consequences.

    162

    • #
      PeterS

      Actually the consequences were known a long time ago. A friend who used to work with the electricity authority explained to me how much chaos solar panels can create on the grid. Much of the chaos can be avoided but not without a lot of upgrading and cost, both to the end user and the power companies.

      272

    • #
      WXcycles

      Oh no, this was very intended, the renewers have been talking about using the uptake surge in solar and batteries to “kick hydrocarbons off the grid”, etc., for a few years. It’s their core eco-vision and strategy.

      262

    • #
      James Murphy

      Do you think the consequences were unintended?

      62

    • #
      Hanrahan

      the law of unintended consequences.

      Is there a law of easily predicted consequences?

      WA has a tiger by the tail, they cannot discriminate against householders wanting to install solar because of ever higher prices yet every new installation puts more load on the shoulders of the poor, renters and unit dwellers.

      Their only escape is to cut FITs to a nominal amount and increase the daily connection fee, rebatable over a certain quarterly amount. [That will go down well NOT].

      73

      • #
        ColA

        Hanrahan, they could always do what Europe did and pay you NOT to put your solar to the grid!! That makes perfect sense to Leftards.
        There is no benefit to demanding house PV include batteries either, 2 cloudy days and the grid would collapse from over demand!

        51

      • #
        yarpos

        Maybe limit the size of installations so they can reasonably support the consumer on an ideal day and not just be oversized FIT harvesting machines.

        20

  • #
    Graeme No.3

    The Greens will celebrate as solar is the sole source of electricity for some hours a day. (reality is loss of frequency control and blackouts).
    The conventional sources e.g. coal and CCGT will shut down as stop-start operation won’t be economic. (the Greens will celebrate).
    Since batteries reliable and cheap enough are at least 7 years off, the electricity required when solar isn’t working will have to be supplied by OCGTs which are more expensive to run and emit more CO2 than CCGTs. The cost of electicity will go up (the Greens will celebrate).
    The greens will claim that more wind turbines are necessary to supply ‘cheap’ electricity when solar isn’t working. Electricity Bills will increase.
    There will be increased blackouts

    262

    • #
      manalive

      Since batteries reliable and cheap enough are at least 7 years off …

      From what I’ve read lithium battery storage technological development has almost plateaued.
      An entirely new technology will need to be developed to get any significant increase in storage density.

      257

      • #
        sophocles

        …and batteries which are more fireproof. There needs to be some improvements in battery flammability.

        (Hmm, that reads well! Nicely ambiguous ) :-)

        Too many Li-ion batteries burn spontaneously. I can see insurance companies quietly upping their household insurance premiums if the household has anything powered by Li-ion batteries, or just quietly upping all premiums on the assumption that every household has one or more cell phones, lap-top computers, games machines and tablets.

        203

        • #
          rollo

          Sophocles says

          and batteries which are more fireproof. There needs to be some improvements in battery flammability.

          As energy density increases lithium batteries have become more prone to catching fire.

          ” A 1,350mAh cell in the 18650 package could tolerate a nail penetration test, the high-density 3,400mAh can ignite when performing the same test………. Underwriters Laboratories (UL) test no longer mandates nail penetration for safety acceptance of lithium-based batteries.” more info at batteryuniversity.com

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        • #
          RayG

          The lab that was part of the chemistry class that I took as an undergraduate back in the Dark Ages had sinks that were virtually indestructible. On the first day of lab, the teaching assistant went over the safety rules. As part of this he lit a piece of lithium ribbon on fire in one of the sinks. His purpose was to show us how difficult extinguishing chemical fires can be. I often think of that demonstration when I see a Tesla driving by.

          80

          • #
            sophocles

            RayG commented:

            I often think of that demonstration when I see a Tesla driving by.

            … and rightly so. Tesla batteries internal structure apparently makes for free oxygen in/around the cathodes. That’s a fire trap right there. (And well demonstrated.)

            I remember a similar demo in Chem 1 at uni, too. I’ve always had a `side interest’ in pyrotechnics and explosives which I indulged over my teen years. It was a lot of fun.
            Can’t be bothered, these days. Must have grown out of it. :-)

            Rollo mentioned:

            a nail penetration test, the high-density 3,400mAh can ignite when performing the same test………. Underwriters Laboratories (UL) test no longer mandates nail penetration for safety acceptance of lithium-based batteries.”

            Li-ion batteries are starting (just) to move away from cobalt cathode structures to manganese so we might not see quite so many rolling `incinerators’ in future. What little I’ve been able to find out suggests a big reduction or even elimination of free oxygen with the manganese cathode structures. One can hope …

            In the mean time, I wouldn’t touch a Tesla. Musk has a built-in GRQ scheme for parts. Another posting on the same site suggests fragile front suspension, three months waiting time for parts, &c. &c. High use of aluminium means expensive to repair bodies. Impact damage goes a lot further into the structural members than with steel. However, Tesla repairs seem to need signing up to a monopoly scheme for car repair shops.

            (GRQ = Get Richer Quicker)

            I’ll be keeping a close eye on super capacitor developments too. (see WXCycles below.) If these work out and supersede batteries, then the electric vehicle may become much more attractive. The weight of the batteries (and their flammability) don’t thrill me at all. They still haven’t found flight MH370…

            21

          • #

            I bought a very serious Maelstrom S18 torch on a good ebay deal. It runs on lithium only and, on full, it can light the whole fenced compound outside my house, which is the reason I wanted it.

            On low setting it’s a handy torch but if left on high for more than a couple of minutes the thing gets dangerously hot. Like all things green lately, lithium tech is a useful technology which is old, fraught with scalability problems and limited in scope. The money and cred we are frittering on antique alternatives will be lost to actual alternatives. The way to obstruct the future is to come up with quaint, clunky ideas on what the future will be like and impose them on an unwilling present.

            What is presented as new green tech is mutton dressed as lamb, lipstick on a pig…and generally bad butchery.

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            • #
              sophocles

              Mosomoso said:

              The money and cred we are frittering on antique alternatives will be lost to actual alternatives.

              Absolutely correct. It’s epitomised in the shrill kneejerk reaction to any mention of “nuclear power” and anything nuclear. The “no,no,no,no…” reaction is understandable for the high-pressure water reactors—old technology from the 1950s—and inapplicable to modern LFTR technology.

              41

        • #
      • #
        WXcycles

        Energy density is a fairly minor issue compared to cost, and maybe weight.

        But that new storage tech went on sale in Australia about two months ago (apparently it reached market in Australia first).

        The world’s first retail high-capacity CARBON GRAPHINE based super-capacitor.

        The operating characteristics and application potential is extraordinary—looks like they’ll make lithium tech go the way of NiCad.

        They have competitive energy density (not better than Li though, competitive weight and purchase cost compared to available bayteries. But allows ULTRA-FAST CHARGING, like ~60% capacity in 4 minutes and can’t be overcharged with no toxic or flamable gas and you can use 100% of available charge, with zero full discharge damage, very little heat, plus zero capacity degradation as ages for unlimited recharge cycles. Design cell life of 45 years with NO THERMAL RUNAWAY HAZARD.

        Thus no more sudden toxic chemical fires—as I understand it the graphine doesn’t burn.

        Current cost is about $4,700 AUD for the basic 3.55 KW-hr “pseudo-battery”. So-called as it’s a true electrostatic super capacitor which acts much like a battery, except minus current serious issues with lithium batteries.

        Plus you can connect an unlimited number of them, in parallel, and up to 18 of them in-series for 63.9 KW-hr.

        Arvio put two into a self-contained rack box with inverter, etc., for $23,000 AUD, for a 7.1 KW-hr system, which compares well with the latest 10 KW-hr $30,000 AUD Redflow Zinc Bromide ‘Z-cell’ batteries (thats $30K for just the Redflow battery–the inverters etc. are extra!).

        So the new graphine system compares very well with the current best available high-end commercial and residential renewable battery tech.

        And this is just the initial version to market. If they can reduce wholesale and retail margins with economies of scale, graphine super capacitors will quickly supplant and displace lithium battery demand.

        Going to be interesting.

        http://kilowattlabs.com/energy-storage-advantage.html

        https://solarbatteriesonline.com.au/product/sirius-energy-storage-capacitor-module-3-55kwh-48v/

        https://www.solarquotes.com.au/blog/arvio-supercapacitor-battery-review/

        http://arvio.com.au/tech_pack

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        • #
          Chad

          Sorry WXc, but you have fallen for a deceptive sales ploy..
          Those Killowatt Labs “Supercapacitor”. systems, are nothing od the sort !
          They are falsely advertised, and are infact Lithium based “LTO”. ( Lithium Titanare Oxide) based devices, as has been proven by their own online test demonstrations as well as basic physics.
          Nother Killowatt or Arvia will release components for independent testing to prove otherwise.
          There is no known “Supercapicitor” or similar capacitive device with the energy density as claimed by Kilowatt labs. Graphine based or not.
          So, what you have is an expensive ($/kWh) alternative lithium system.
          But its not really the fact that it is lithium that is dangerous,.. it is the ENERGY contained that is the risk….a simple fault , a short, failed component, etc that can release the 5-10kWh in a short time period (= 100s of kW instantly) will release huge amounts of heat etc.
          Its like saying a metal can full of petrol under your bed , is safer than a plastic can full with the same petrol.
          No, sorry, Killowatt labs device is possibly an option, but it is not Lithium free, not good value $/kWh, and since the manufacturers /vendors are making false claims for it, ..i would be very wary of its real integrity.
          More background here..
          http://forums.aeva.asn.au/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=5486&sid=255af1bcf322ca85418152dfd5d9521a

          32

          • #
            Chad

            Corrections..
            LTO = Lithium Titanate Oxide
            Which is a recent type of Lithium Battery…NOT a capacitor.

            32

          • #
            WXcycles

            Chad,

            I’ve seen people making that claim in the past week or so, that these are just batteries, but they have produced zero direct physical proof to show that’s so.

            There’s a detailed review link above where it was tested, and other than some minor quibbles about spec range limits, it worked as advertised.

            So if it were actually a fake I’m quite sure one ,(or several) of their competitors would have bought it already, pulled it apart, and directly exposed it as fake, before it could impact competition’s sales or investment and finances, etc.

            That hasn’t occurred—why?

            So until someone on the internet, claiming these to not be real, actually buys one and pulls it apart and proves it to just be a battery, then I see no reason to take the claims of fakeness seriously.

            Plus a newly marketed major tech breakthrough, like this, would have to undertake compliance with lab tests and safety standards testing, to be used in Australia. And if not done the safety regulators would get axed.

            So the claims of fakery seem much more suspicious to me, than this product—SO FAR.

            It is quite an accusation to be making while having presented no material evidence of it, no?

            Ask yourself, do you think a company like Arvio would know the difference between an Li battery and a super-capacitor?

            And would an OEM think they could get away with announcing they have the world’s first graphine super-cap, and expect no one to quickly notice it’s fake?

            I seriously doubt that one.

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            • #
              Chad

              WXc…
              Did you read the posted link i gave you, and watch the test videos ?
              If you know anything about supercapacitors, you will know that these units cannot be anything of the sort.
              Arvia have claimed there are 400 units of 3000F 18650 size inside their unit.
              Show me where there is any 3000F supercapacitor available in that size ?
              Show me where there is any 3000F supercapacitor available for under $20
              They are claiming to have something that is unavailable to NASA let alone the commercial world.

              PS .. Note that the devices inside their magic box are EXACTLY like the commercial 18650 LTO batteries that you and i can buy from Alexpress for $1.50 each , and have performance characteristics EXACTLY like the Killowatts lab unit.
              You may want to ask Arvio about the compliance certification they have for these units.
              Lets be clear, the unit does what it says,…3.55kWh storage at 48v, but it is NOT a Supercapacitor, , it does not have endless recharge cycles, it is not 99% efficient, and it is not cheaper than other equivalent systems…
              it is just a Lithium battery of different chemistry.

              24

              • #
                Chad

                Actually , i suspect you did not read that review you posted the link to..
                Or you would have read this comment..

                …The cells do not act like I’d expect supercapacitors to when fast charged, they do appear to act like some lithium batteries when charged or discharged over an hour….

                He also suggests the RTE is more like 66% than the 99% claimed. !

                04

              • #
                WXcycles

                http://forums.aeva.asn.au/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=5486&sid=255af1bcf322ca85418152dfd5d9521a

                Chad, alternatively, your link’s first comment points out that the claimed super-capacitor has integrated control electronics to SIMULATE battery-like charge and discharge responses (i.e. to make it widely compatible with existing chargers and inverters).

                So why would we not expect battery-like behaviour when it’s specifically designed to ‘look’ like a regular battery, to current industry-standard electronics systems?

                i.e. make it act just like a regular battery, not like a super-cap, so that it doesn’t need a dedicated super-cap charger, and super-cap inverter, which would hugely impede its market uptake.

                Bottom line is, no one has yet SUBSTANCIATED any of their speculation that it’s not a graphine based super-cap.

                Indeed the review link (I posted) points out that recent graphine R&D experiments show graphine super cap tech is currently acheiving just over double the energy density being claimed by this first purported super-cap. So nothing out of bounds of credibility there.

                Further, I’ll draw your attention to the curious recent quietude on the topic on the various critical industry forums. The comment quiet began on the 18th of May, last Friday. Everyone suddenly stopped claiming these were just batteries—all comments just stopped. Looks to me as though they’ve been served a ‘Cease & Desist’ order on the topic.

                Time will tell, but as your link also says, two Telcos have tested and are deploying them so I suspect they’re in a better position to know what they are. There’s also no change on the OEM or resellers websites, except that the list price has risen by about $950, since early march, or ~20% per unit higher.

                Seems they’re in rising demand from integrated storage system makers.

                So I’m aware of critic’s claims, but I%m discounting them until materially proven, which I suspect they won’t bother to do (but their claims of fakery will continue, regardless, no doubt).

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              • #
                WXcycles

                You accidently left out this important part of that quote, Chad:

                Because the supercapacitor performs so poorly when charged over 15 minutes, I didn’t understand why Arvio gives its DC to DC round trip efficiency as 96%. So I sent Paul Wilson of Arvio an email asking about the RTE, or Round Trip Efficiency, and he replied:

                “The 96% RTE on the unit itself is an actual test that we have done when running the turnkey unit at about a 1 hour charge and 1 hour discharge rate. This is more load than most applications would require. Very little heat is generated in this cycling test and the average over 24 hours was about 96%. We expect that we can get this to about 97% soon with some recent upgrades just introduced.”

                Yes, I read the review. The unit control electronics are designed to simulate battery behaviour, for compatibiity with existing sources, charging and discharging systems.

                Presumably it should be able to also bypass this pseudo battery simulation ‘mode’, and act more like a super-cap, as dedicated super-cap optimised chargers and inverters become available.

                But that’s my reading between the lines.

                Now Chad, ask yourself, why does a BATTERY UNIT itself need a software upgrade, to improve recharge efficiency, unless it’s petformance is being software-defined to simulate being a pseudo battery, to make better (more efficient) use of the existing charger’s capacity to recharge it more efficiently?

                100

              • #
                Chad

                WX,…you will find the critique and dis-proof of the supercap claim is stil underway today on the EV forum link……headed by some very competant and experienced power engineers.
                Incase you missed it, they even pointed out the cheap sticky ” supercap” label that had been put over the Ebay lithium cell they were trying to sell.
                But i have no dog in this fight, other than to warn others of the false , deceptive claims being made by Killowatt labs and Arvio, and i wonder why you are so dedicated to defending them when it is very obviously not what they claim.
                If it were a supercap cevice, i would immediatelly buy as many units as possible, just to rip them apart to resell the supercapacitors as their value would be in excess of $20,000 in each unit.
                Nobody offers a 3000F supercapacitor for under $50.00 and the smallest are the size of a coke can, …not these tiny finger sized units.
                Those reports of high capacity devices were lab test sample results , not. Viable commercial devices.
                If they really were Supercaps, Killowatt labs could just sell the individual units and make 10 times more margin than they could hope for with the storage unit which is massively overpriced per kWh compared to competitors storage systems
                It wont worry me if others want to buy these “Sirius” storage units, bit do not complain that you were never warned !

                07

              • #
                WXcycles

                ” … and i wonder why you are so dedicated to defending them when it is very obviously not what they claim. …”

                oh geez, that’s what you wanted to say? Don’t make me laugh.

                All the claims mean nothing if no one provides material observational evidence from the units that are for sale. If USA based Kilowatt Labs and Australian based Arvio are doing what you claim, it should be a piece of cake to provide material evidence of it. And you didn’t answer my question about why not even their competitors have exposed them yet, if it’s so clearly faked?

                I suspect those claiming these things just won’t bother stumping-up evidence.

                I’m perfectly ok with the outcome either way. I just require clear evidence. I’m sorry that you feel converting people to a belief is enough, it isn’t. Get back WHEN you have it, otherwise I’m not going with hearsay.

                70

              • #
                WXcycles

                “WX,…you will find the critique and dis-proof of the supercap claim is stil underway today on the EV forum link……headed by some very competant and experienced power engineers. …”
                —–

                Ah yes, one more nonsense comment was added, and it was baloney.

                Direct link:
                http://forums.aeva.asn.au/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=5486&sid=271684b63722b9dd2fc237a1c0034daf&start=250#p67720

                His water tower analogy is gratuitous rubbish, water towers and dams don’t have uniform standardised shapes, he assumes a cylinder shape (so why didn’t he just say that?), but frankly, all water towers I’ve seen don’t have a flat base—besides it being quite irrelevant (as I’ll show).

                But besides all that un-necessary waffle by ‘Weber’ (Site Admin), all he had to say was that the electrons added (ENERGY added), under constant charge conditions should show a LINEAR RISE with time. And guess what? The YELLOW LINE on the published test graph depicts a LINEAR ENERGY RISE (lineae addition of electrons), with time.

                Which is exactly what a super capacitor test should show.

                Is this Weber guy ‘punking’ everyone, or what?

                Look, it’s real simple, the battery is the reservior, and the electrons are what is filling it.

                Yet that ‘expert’ critic weber, tries to contrive that it’s really being filled with VOLTS, rather than ELECTRONS! Thus he tries to claim the voltage rise should be what’d linear!

                LMAO! … Rubbish.

                You fell for ‘expert’ nonsense like that, Chad? Come on mate!

                It’s electrons that flow and fill the battery, The shape of a battery is totally irrelevant to how fast the number of electrons rise within the battery.

                And in a water tower case, you don’t care at all about shape, or the water evel, you only care about rate of VOLUME of water rise, which is not controlled by the reservior’s shape, but by the flow capacity permitted by the pipe and pump that’s adding the water.

                So his whole analogy is complete garbage, and what’s amazing is his (and others) blindness to the linear yellow line.

                A lithium battery does not add electrons linearly, above about 60% of a full recharge, it becomes stepped, as the lithium tech can not accept constant additions of electrons to a full charge. So the yellow line would not be linear for a lithium battery.

                In other words, a lithium battery will NOT exhibit linear energy rise, all the way to a full charge.

                But the review tested super-capacitor DID add the electrons linearly the whole time, while recharge conditions remained constant.

                If the YELLOW LINE was not linear, then you would be suspecting something was amiss.

                But nothing was amiss, it filled linearly with electron energy like a super cap should.

                So this ‘expert’s’ argument is clearly rubbish, from all directions, as the graph is displaying the opposite of what he’s claimed and concluded!

                Chad, you really need to review your BS-filter settings, as you’re tripping-up on belief in the infallibility of experts, instead of skeptically thinking through the claims and recognising they’re talking complete rubbish, and pretending it’s ‘evidence’, or even logical.

                All Weber’s silly rot about towers and dams should have alerted you to a snow-job, plus his nonsense conclusion, which in fact is just an insinuation, was contrived, and he wouldn’t even summarise his ‘reasoning’ into a test able conclusion. Sometimes it’s the enlightenment ‘guru’ who’s doing the befuddling. Industry people ‘talk their book’, so that’s why you insist on material evidence of claims.

                Time for them to put-up material evidence or shut-up, as they just look silly speculating and writing such illogical misleading rubbish.

                30

              • #
                Chad

                Sorry WXc , but you obviously do not understand the diference between a capacitive device and a battery storage device , and do not recognise the evidence when presented.
                But thats ok , you appear to have an interest in supporting these guys for some reason, dispite their dishonest claims.
                I note you have not been able to find a 3000F supercap of that size or at anywhere near aviable price ?
                Note..KWlabs do not manufacture components, they simply source suppliers and assemble the package,….so the OEM manufacturer/supplier must be out there somewhere ?
                Good luck finding them .

                03

              • #
                WXcycles

                ” … obviously do not understand the diference between a capacitive device and a battery storage device …”

                Oh hang on, I thought both dams and water towers stored H2O and delivered it by gravity feed? Except the clouds recharge the dam, directly, but the tower is recharged indirectly, and mechanically. But Weber said the analogy was sufficient for the intended purpose?

                BZZT! It isn’t, it stinks.

                But now you want to assume I don’t grasp the physical difference between electrostatic gap storage, and molecular electron-shell storage?

                Whatever.

                ” … and do not recognise the evidence when presented. … ”

                aahaha! … present some evidence! By all means, be my guest! I keep saying to come back when you actually have some. Think it won’t happen though.

                In the meantime, it appears you think lithium batteries fill with electrons, at a linear rate!

                BZZT!

                ” … But thats ok , you appear to have an interest in supporting these guys for some reason, dispite their dishonest claims. …”

                Ah yes, despite your total absence of evidence, you still insist on making stuff up, and believing in it, rather than just face that you have no evidence to support your criticisms of the super-cap, or alleged wrong-doing of its’ suppliers or sellers. So you double-down with paranoid waffle about me now, for merely insisting on evidence as opposed to taking you anon word for it. Yet I pointed out, with graphed data fact, that your preferred ‘expert’ is talking nonsense. And your paranoia about me for merely rejecting a lack of material proof, now allegedly constitutes a ‘support’ of unsubstantiated allegations of wrong doing by sellers—again, with zero evidence.

                At least you’re consistent.

                Rather, you just don’t like being put on the spot to backup your (so far) baseless assertions.

                ” … I note you have not been able to find a 3000F supercap of that size or at anywhere near aviable price ? …”

                The onus is not on me (to prove your negatives … lol), it’s on YOU, to positively prove YOUR claims. So quit obfuscating and changing the subject to get out of it.

                ” … Note..KWlabs do not manufacture components, they simply source suppliers and assemble the package …”

                BZZT!

                If you did your homework you’d already know the assembler, which is in Dubai, is called “WRT Technologies”.

                https://wrltec.com/

                The same people who established and own WRT Technologies, also own Kilowatt Labs (and several other international technology companies.

                The inventor of the super-cap cell used in this Kilowatt Labs ” Sirius” super-cap, is a Pakistani named, Waseem Ashraf Qureshi. But if you bothered to read the “About Us” page on the Kilowatt Labs website, you’d already know all this, and would not need to speculate.

                ” … so the OEM manufacturer/supplier must be out there somewhere ? Good luck finding them …”

                The OEM graphine super-cap factory is in China, and is owned by same people who own WRT, and Kilowatt Labs. It is not some nameless random supplier. The WRT OEM sends the caps to Dubai to make the Sirius Super-capacitors, for Kilowatt Labs, who then supply them to Arvio, and to other similar industry trade-suppliers, to create integrated storage solutions, to compete with Li storsge solutions.

                It isn’t some mega global conspiracy, just prosaic business, as far as I can tell.

                And Arvio just happened to get its integrated super-capacitor scaleable storage solution unit to market in Australia, first.

                The WRT graphine cap factory in China do not apparently have excess productiion (as yet) for supplying single graphine caps. This is hardly surprising given they are brand new production technology, and in high demand as the first examples are only just now getting to market.

                No doubt 100% of initial production is currently contracted to solely go to WRT assembly in Dubai, as that is why they built and also own the OEM factory, themselves.

                Do you really feel the international market should be flooded with such caps, already if they exist? Really?

                Those are just your misunderstandings and preconceptions, getting in the way, as you try to avoid providing evidence of you claims. The onus is on you to prove your case.

                Please do!

                Plus, do you realise the ~$50 or so for a ~3,000f cap has little to do with production cost, but with sourcing, importing, warehousing, stocking, retailing and taxation?

                While you were busy being a wouser and listening to critics, I did some homework on the people behind it. It wasn’t hard either, it isn’t even hidden, most of the information is in the review article, and a few other easy to locate open sources.

                I’ve got to get back to supporting the evil-doers.

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              • #
                WXcycles

                A couple of searches later and I’ve found the super-capacitor OEM factory in China is opeated by a company owned by the core R&D Group of “Amber&Waseem”, called, “MicrotronTec”, which are all a part of, “WRL Technologies”.

                http://amberandwaseem.com/
                http://microtrontec.com/

                The company which then assembles the MicrtronTec super-caps into the Kilowatt Labs Capacitor units, in Dubai, is MICC GreenTec.

                http://www.greentec.energy/

                The SUPER-capacitors are not 3,000F (i.e. ultra-capacitor F range), they are actually 140,000F, a hybrid graphine-based cell with a lithium elctrode, and is electronicly balanced via, as suspected, software-based definition and control (to make the super-caps simulate behaving like a lead or Li battery).

                These are a completely new technology, so expecting to compare them to previous ultracaps, and their performance, without knowing this, is the source of critic’s confusion, because clearly nothing like these has been seen operating before at a commercial and domestic supply level.

                This Group of companies are well established globally, and have been manufacturing and distributing a wide range of advanced power technologies, for many years as they grew. So it appears very unlikely that these Kilowatt Labs super-capacitor units are fakes, just Li tech, as has been merely claimed without evidence by people who have not so much as seen one, let alone disassembled it. I predict they will never back up their claims with direct physical material evidence.

                So I%m calling BS on the expert critics, this time, as this is a genuine breakthrough electron storage technology, and it is available now for purchase from Arvio.

                MicrotronTec Technology page text:
                http://microtrontec.com/technologies.php
                —–

                Storage technology needs a new approach

                Current battery approaches focus on trying to reduce the inherent limitations of electrochemistry; however, when it comes to power requirements, chemical approaches will always be slow as the rate of a chemical reaction is hard to increase without serious complications related to safety, performance, and product life.

                Drawbacks of Current Technologies

                Unsurprisingly, most of the commercial R&D in energy storage of the last century has focused on engineering around the inherent limitations of the chemistries to mitigate the drawbacks. While these efforts have brought tremendous advances, the efficient use of batteries in many applications requires centering the entire commercial operation on the limits imposed by the battery bottleneck, which brings additional costs and complications.
                What makes Microtron’s Composite Charge Cache technology unique?

                Microtron’s technology solves the critical energy storage dilemma while providing additional technological benefits to users. …

                Graphene-Based Ultracaps

                Unlike conventional ultracaps using Activated Carbon, Microtron’s storage cells use graphene. The higher surface area of graphene allows Microtron to deploy ultracap cells with capacitance values of up to 140,000 farads vs the 3,000 farads in most ultra-capacitors on the market today.

                Advanced Ultracap-Battery Hybrid

                Microtron’s proprietary energy storage cells embed both capacitive and chemical storage layers. This provides the power handling capabilities of capacitive storage while minimizing leakage and self-discharge.

                Advanced management and control

                The combination of very high capacitance cells and cell-level integration of lithium-ion requires the use of a software-managed system of electronics for managing the discharge current and for the balancing and stability of the graphene cells. Microtron has refined a cell balancing solution that allows the system to attain both high energy density as well as flexible power output.

                Comparison of Technical Properties vs Alternatives

                Superior Performance Across Key Metrics

                Microtron’s solutions outclass both lead-acid and lithium-ion storage technologies on charge time, cycle count life, discharge depth, round-trip efficiency, and power density. This superior performance offers an improvement in energy density over lead-acid that is comparable to the energy density performance of lithium-ion chemistry, without the same drawbacks as lithium-ion. The total cost of ownership is highly competitive with lithium-ion and lead acid chemistry.

                © Microtron Technologies 2018
                —-

                The page also contains two tables to illustrate the respective differences.

                Here is the latest (continually updated) battery market cokparison data table and pricing. The Arvio Super-Capacitor (Independence Day) unit is on it, for a direct spec and price comparison.

                https://www.solarquotes.com.au/battery-storage/comparison-table/

                Which links to this recent review:
                https://www.solarquotes.com.au/blog/arvio-supercapacitor-battery-review/

                And to reseller Arvio:
                http://arvio.com.au/tech_pack

                I’m personally satisfied the critics speculating that these are fake have got it very wrong, this is a real technology and a real product, and it will have a strong impact on the battery market over the next few years.

                (MicrotronTec claim to already have an operating supercapacitor smartphone scale pseudo-battery, with wireless recharge in 15 seconds, for “10 to 20 hrs” of use, and proposes seamless public recharge stations in shops, that auto deduct the recharge cost from a phone’s credit).

                We’ll see many competitor products emerging from here, and they’ll just push aside lithium battery technology, the same way that NiCads disappeared fast, a decade ago.

                This same group of companies are also working on EV car versions of super-capacitor tech with potentially the same rapid wireless recharge capability.

                Each one of these storage advances will change several major global industries.

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        • #
          Another Ian

          But how will the grid like such high draw rates if there are masses of them?

          10

          • #
            Hanrahan

            But how will the grid like such high draw rates if there are masses of them?

            I doubt the local grid could charge just one Tesla in seconds. I can envisage clouds of expensive smoke.

            This EV experiment will end in a train wreck.

            20

            • #
              Ted O'Brien.

              Charge a Tesla in seconds?

              Are the Teslas designed to allow quick swapping of batteries? That will be necessary for vehicles which travel long distances. It will also be necessary when cars need to be used and charged at the same time, as where the primary source is PV. Even cars “plugged in overnight” will depend on storage out of the vehicle.

              Then again, might supercapcitor technology mentioned elsewhere here emulate the silicon chip and become so efficient that chemical batteries become irrelevant?

              This whole program will depend absolutely on the cost of the storage, whatever the technology used.

              00

          • #
            sophocles

            The Grid will respond how all over-stressed electrical (and electronic) units do: it will let the smoke out!

            Then it will be: Grid? What Grid?

            20

          • #
            WXcycles

            If there were no further subsidies or govt engendered vandalisms, the market would equillibrate towards the most sound choices and mix of technologies, all on its own.

            But Govt, at all levels, believes its modern role is to demolish and degrade the energy supply of Australians. Which is the opposite of the situation, when I was a kid, when we took pride in cheap electricity everywhere. Prior to about 1998 you never heard anyone complain about the size of a power bill, it was a total non-issue. Untill the networj was ‘pseudo-privatised’, and simultaneously massively politicised.

            What’s the 2018 equivalent of a brown paper bag full of cash, anyway? A poli’s superfund? Insider trading? A Corporate Board seat? All of the above?

            Whatever form it takes, destroying the economics of electricity, for the purposes of foreigners, seems to attract polis, of all stripes, quicker than flies to an envicerated road-kill.

            Oh yeah they’re doin’ great out of this mess, so the energy ‘market’ will remain more or less non-functional. Pseudo-privatised just means the user-pays, not only a fair-price for the essential service provision, but for amplifying private extortion too.

            Public electron services = everyone can afford it.

            Private electron services = fox in the hen house.

            There’s no question that pseudo-privatisation of essential services is expressed as spiral corruption, with no end in sight, because the fox is paying the farmer to look the other way.

            Fox? … what’s a fox? … no, that’s just a red sheep dog … we use those to protect the chickens … nah, those are just the spare feathers … chickens malt …

            40

      • #
        Hanrahan

        From what I’ve read lithium battery storage technological development has almost plateaued.

        But of course. Batteries are primarily a commodity, not a technology and quickly hit the point of diminishing returns.

        Bought a new battery for your car lately, was it cheap? They have been in production for over 100 years and made by the millions but bang for the buck are still not cheap. The ubiquitous AA cell is made by the billion but a good one still costs close to $1.

        Mass production will not not deliver the cheap batteries promised and I suspect that higher energy densities will result in higher fire risk.

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        • #
          Hanrahan

          WOW, that received a lot of red thumbs. Would those who feel that way care to explain where I was wrong?

          90

          • #
            Graeme No.3

            Hanrahan:
            The concept of energy density is beyond believers in AGW, as is knowledge of basic chemistry. They think that Governments can pass laws that over-ride reality.
            They cannot explain anything.
            I wonder why they bother reading this blog except they must get a thrill from a red thumb.

            90

          • #
            sophocles

            Hanrahan, You must have raised problems electric car believers don’t want to acknowledge!

            Frankly, the whole idea of driving around sitting on my own personal (flight) MH370 potential disaster is not at all attractive to me. At least, I would be on Terra Firma (the more Firma the less terror) but a fire which cannot be extinguished until it’s burnt itself out just does not enchant me.

            I’m happy to watch developments for now and for a few years yet!

            You’re right about mass production not being a cure: at the start of 2016, Cobalt (used in the cathode structures) was US$2000.00 per tonne. At the start of 2018, Cobalt was over US$80,000 per tonne. Cheaper batteries? Yeah, Right.

            Manganese has just been found to be a suitable replacement for Cobalt and as it’s a lot cheaper (for now), the promise of cheaper batteries may still be there. But watch the price of manganese over the next few years …

            (Some people have a little trouble with reality, so I guess I’ll be sharing a few red thumbs with you <grin> )

            80

        • #
          Ted O'Brien.

          How much of the price we pay goes to manufacturing?

          00

  • #
    OriginalSteve

    Had the govt actually wanted to ensure a stable grid, it would have put in place quotas of max. number of solar installs per grid sector to preserve stability.

    Best that we publicise this problem. If it means people cant run solar into the grid and have to run off battery to preserve grid stability, then so be it.

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    • #
      robert rosicka

      Had the government done its job in the first place they would have asked people like Tony what would happen if we put too many solar panels on too many roofs .

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      • #

        Had the government done it’s job it would have done a proper scientific review to see if using solar panels would change the weather in the first place!

        Since they don’t, there should be no subsidies at all.
        Let the free market decide if a single solar panel is worth installing.

        334

        • #
          robert rosicka

          Good point Jo but some of us didn’t put them up to save the planet ,just in the hope of reducing our bills into the future although as I now realise it had some unintended consequences.
          Dearer electricity so the poor suffer.
          And grid instability so everyone suffers .
          Virtue signalling by the watermelons – look how many people have embraced the clean green revolution in renewable power ( this one shames me the most).

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          • #

            Robert, I completely understand. It’s the same for so many Australians.

            But electricity prices wouldn’t be so unbearable in the first place if we hadn’t forcibly added so many unreliables. Roof top solar is not cheaper than even current inflated electricity prices without a subsidy. There is no way we would be putting solar on the roof if we still had a cheap coal dominated grid with the prices we used to pay.

            214

            • #
              robert rosicka

              Yes Jo you’re right ,it was the prices moving north at a rapid pace that influenced my decision, that and not being able to work again .
              If prices were cheap I certainly wouldn’t have forked out $12k for solar .

              123

              • #
                Hanrahan

                I held off while my neighbour put a 5KW system on his house and another 5KW one on his garage, both installations subsidised and both at 44c FIT. [He then wanted me to cut down a 100 yr [?] old gum tree overshadowing his garage] Google maps shows he subdivided his property to pull this off.

                Like you I just had to cut my bills and go with the flow.

                81

              • #
                WXcycles

                Robert I suspect the prices were held high by the subsidies creating stimulated demand, so even as scale increased the demand rose with it. The high demand creates scarcity, and scarcity means it’s a sellers market, as they can ask what the market will bearvto pay.

                So you then remove the subsidies, but now the grid price is so high, that this creates far more demand to go solar, which holds the seller’s price higher, even as market scale continues to rise. Nope, the price will drop only when demand falls or production exceeds demand. So not for years yet. Same applies to new battery arrays, they too are going to remain in high demand for many years to cone. So the cost is not coming down without a serious recession and economic shake out.

                In other words, the subsidies distorted everything toward the worst of outcomes.

                Played to perfection, by a fake pseudo-’private’ energy ‘market’.

                190

          • #
            shannon

            termelons – “look how many people have embraced the clean green revolution in renewable power”

            Well bigger fools them…..for not doing their “homework” before committing to this unfolding disaster……
            I have had solar hot water for 25+ years…hot water isnt always “on tap” !
            Learning “what to do and when”… took a period of time to master.
            Overcast…rainy and normal Winters ..STILL require base load electricity for sufficient and continual hot water…

            82

            • #
              Greg Cavanagh

              This is a good point. Every now and then, like this summer for example, from January to the end of February we had rain almost every day for two months.

              Probably not a WA problem, but this is a Queensland problem.

              31

        • #
          Geoffrey Williams

          Jo I agree with what you say; the only proper and sensible answer is that ‘renewable’ solar should never be subsidised. If allowed to continue then it (subsidised solar) will destroy the grid. Those who want their own solar powered electricity should go off grid; no one else wants their excess solar electricity at inflated prices. Surely the grid was built as a one-way power delivery system for the benefit of all. The free market should be allowed to prevail, no government interference. And in all this the AEMO are quite useless, indeed they are run by the very people who are intent on destrying the system.

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          • #
            PeterS

            Then vote for ACP. That’s what they promise and more, such as withdrawing from the Paris Climate Accord. They won’t form government but they can influence things if they hold the balance of power. Here are their policies on energy:
            Key Points:
            Australians deserve the most reliable and affordable energy in the world.
            With electricity generation, we are technology-agnostic but subsidy-averse.
            We support nuclear power and a nuclear fuel cycle industry.
            We support all forms of electricity generation and will provide them with legislative certainty and legal protection.
            We do not support any renewable energy targets.
            We will remove all taxpayer and cross subsidies to electricity generation.
            We will require all electricity supplied to the grid to be useable – that is, predictable and consistent in output (kWhrs) and synchronous (at the required 50 Hz range).
            We will allow market forces to provide the most efficient power generation available.
            We will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.

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            • #
              WXcycles

              ” … We will require all electricity supplied to the grid to be useable – that is, predictable and consistent in output (kWhrs) and synchronous (at the required 50 Hz range). …”
              —–

              Which means all renewables must put electrons into storage, before they can go to grid, or they cannot supply to the grid at all.

              Good move! Then the onus is on the owner generator to make it economic, and not on the consumers any longer.

              Then we’ll see how ‘economic’ it really is (isn’t) to send ‘renewable’ electrons to grid, and if renewable tech will be renewed, when kaput.

              And that’s how you get a commodity, plus a buyer’s market, with much cheaper $ per watt-hr.

              152

        • #
          toorightmate

          Jo,
          “Government”, “proper” and “science” do not belong in the same sentence.

          82

  • #
    Latus Dextro

    The uptake of solar panels here has accelerated due to painful electricity prices and an ongoing subsidy.

    LOL … kinda.
    Sadly, I once had an academically and medically qualified friend who really should know better. He lives in WA and I have had the pleasure of visiting on several occasions. We flew together, taking it in turns to fly, from Broome to Albany. We shared great times. Bombarded as we have been by UN inspired CAGW globalist propaganda through the MSM for years, I have regaled him with the usual counter-arguments with which we are all familiar here, together with their sources but his interest was always vanishingly low. I could never understand why nor why he should suspend his usual critical scientific rigour. I still don’t understand fully, although I surmised that it wasn’t as important to him as it was to me. In the end, it cost us a long friendship.

    As a confirmed UK Guardian reader with his Leftist beliefs and lifelong journey through academia that included UWA, there was never much wider traction in an intellectual reality beyond the usual Leftist vernacular or vision. If the Guardian said it, it must be right. I begged him to apply the scientific rigour he applied to pharmacotherapeutics. I failed. I don’t understand why and I suspect, neither does he. Persuading him to examine his hard-wired armchair, frappe swilling Leftist beliefs in the light of facts and counterpoint was futile.

    As reality now encroaches in WA, I can hope he only sees it for what it is, though I doubt it.

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    • #
      el gordo

      The propaganda has been intense, everyone I know has been brainwashed into believing this madness. Something to do with extraordinary mass delusion, historians will be astounded by our naivety.

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      • #
        OriginalSteve

        Latus, I look at it this way….in the former Yugoslavia, people of different religions live side by side harmoniously for 20 years before politics ruined it all and former friends and neighbours then started killing each other. It has always been thus, and sad to say, I think in many cases your former friend may be the one look at you one day from the safe end of a firearm if and when it gets really nasty….or put another way, if ISIS and other terrorist organizations can recruit doctors and engineers – people who should know better – then once the “hand of madness” strikes someone ( personally, I think it has a religious angle / demonic influence and people have to be willing to basically sell their souls to the devil to participate ) then the laws of normality cease to operate. In like ways, once the Nazi Brown Shirts got going, the Krystal Nacht wasn’t far behind it as impressionable ( and nasty ) people hopped on board the thug train.

        It is what it is…

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        PeterS

        Yes but the delusion has borders – Australia’s. Other countries don’t appear to have a problem building nuclear and/or coal fired power stations even if they believe in the CAGW crap. So we are doubly stupid for supporting the two major parties that keep fuelling the delusion.

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          PeterF

          The borders must be very strange. France, Germany Spain, the UK, The USA, Holland are all closing coal power plants (ok Germany has one plant still under construction) as well as nuclear. Between all the EU countries the UK Canada and Mexico they will close about 30 nuclear plants between 2010 and 2025 and open 6. The US alone has already closed 260 coal plants since 2010 and ordered none,with a further 26 GW scheduled for early closure. India has just reduced its nuclear target from 60 GW to 23 GW. nowhere near replaced by 12 GW of new plants in the Emirates Turkey and Egypt. China hasn’t ordered a new nuclear plant for 2 years.
          Even China and India get a smaller share of their power from coal than we do and between them are building out wind and solar at more than 3 times the rate of coal

          00

      • #
        Greg Cavanagh

        I work in an engineering office with about 16 other draftsmen. Everyone knows I ridicule CAGW because I show them articles from here and WUWT and laugh my head off. I know a couple are in the same boat as me, they don’t believe for a second that GW is true, nor sea rise because of it.

        Some poke fun at me, but I do think it’s all in jest. I think they accept GW but havn’t bothered to research it. The fact that they make light of it tells me they don’t think it’s as serious as the media proclaim.

        The rest don’t mention it one way or another, so inconclusive.

        I have never yet met someone who I believe takes it serious. I do have a good friend who believes all the environmental catastrophism that Green Peace put out, but he seems uncommitted to this catastrophic global warming thing.

        Sea level rise has other causes, and for SE Qld at least, seems to be between 0.0mm and 1.3mm per year (best as I can figure from my research). I downloaded all the data for the Brisbane port and it has some big step jumps in it. But the sea level today is exactly the same as it was in the 70′s, before it dropped dramatically and has been rising slowly up ever since. So has it risen? The average says it has, yet the levels between the dates 70′s and today are identical, so I say it hasn’t.

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        • #
          el gordo

          ‘….but he seems uncommitted to this catastrophic global warming thing.’

          If he thinks we should replace coal fired power stations with solar and wind, then he has been brainwashed.

          Also, if he accepts the idea that coral bleaching didn’t happen before the 1970s, then he remains ignorant like Tim Flannery and needs help. Good luck.

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          • #
            Greg Cavanagh

            He does believe the coral reef is dying. He also believes whatever a scientist is reported to have said. I’ve challenged him several times to research the subjects and decide for yourself if the thing is likely true or not. He refuses; a waste of time or somesuch. Of course, he’s also in no hurry to go see the reef before it dies, so apparently he thinks it’s not happening all that fast.

            He’s gone full vegan and has one child. So he does live the dream.

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            • #
              el gordo

              Funny thing about professional types, they tend to accept the pronouncements of other disciplines without question.

              Ignorance is bliss and they practice virtue signalling as a way to blend into groupthink, the best kept secret is the one we keep from ourselves.

              Still, even though they seem lost to us, there is still an opportunity to snap the people out of their malaise. Humour in large measure from standup comedians and satirists should have an effect, but it may take a little while because of the religiosity surrounding this cult.

              30

    • #
      shannon

      Coming from a scientific, medical based career ..I total agree with you.
      Many people in the medical fields are “gullible, artificial greenies” !!
      I could never understand, how seemly “intelligent” people could be so short sighted in opinion.
      Then again …I recall some doctors incapable of changing a light bulb !!
      Says it all really…

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        Chad

        Not intending any offence to anyone but..
        Education to any level in any subject ..Maths, Humanities, Science, engineering, Politics, Medical, Space, Electronics, Oceanography, etc etc etc,…does not automatically embody the recipient with a wider grasp of common sense or reality.
        There is a fine line between being a Genius and an Idiot…..often that line is not well defined.
        We know many of our top qualitied “Scientists” , Academics, and politicians have shown their complete lack of reasoning on this subject, so we cannot be surprised that the population in general might have a low understanding of the issues and consequences.
        We should not automatically expect leadership on these issues to come from the “Educated” sector of our community……We may well have to educate them !

        20

        • #
          yarpos

          These days a tertiary education seems to be a sign of at least enough persistence to see something through. It seems to have little value as an indicator of intelligence or the ability to contribute meaningfully in the workplace.

          10

  • #
    RickWill

    It appears WA is in a race to the cliff with SA.

    The situation has existed in the northwest of WA for some time. Residents there are not permitted to add new solar as it is capped for stability reasons:
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-06-03/broome-residents-tire-of-waiting-for-solar/8584060
    So stability has taken priority over the RET.

    The NEG will place higher priority on network stability than market share of wind and solar so it is heading in the right direction.

    The problem could be easily resolved by properly pricing intermittents at their marginal contribution to the grid. That would be a large negative number as we have seen a relatively small market share of intermittents causing dramatic price rises; a market share of 39% in SA tripled the wholesale price. However it also means that the output from all grid scale intermittents should be similarly priced. That would anger the banks – could be less influential now than when Tony Abbott angered them.

    If the cost of intermittency was sheeted to the source it would cause introduction of batteries where power is expensive and disconnection of solar where power is not so expensive. The break even power price is around 50c/kWh.

    I expect it is not reasonable for governments or grid operators to pay for storage as has occurred in SA. If that becomes an accepted arrangement then those without solar will be contributing even more to those with solar.

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    • #

      Thanks. Update added. In the even smaller North-West grid of Western Australia, the powers-that-be have limited the uptake of solar subsidies in Broome to 10% of the towns power for fear of grid fluctuations. (Thanks to RickWill for reminding me).

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        Robber

        What is the feed in tariff for rooftop solar in WA and what is the wholesale price?

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        • #

          Now it’s 7c/KWh. But back in 2010-11 was as high as 20 – 40c “locked for ten years”.

          The people adding panels now are doing it to cope with their inflated bills. But some people are still reaping great money from their old panels.

          Barnett (was lib premier) tried to reduce the tariffs but was cack handed about it, didn’t set the scene by explaining how unfairly high they were, what an imposition it was on other people and the predictable protests killed his plan quickly.

          Other tariffs in the country:
          State *Current Rate Comments
          QLD 7c-16c/kWh Varies by retailer more info
          VIC 10c- 16c/kWh Varies by retailer more info
          SA 7c -16.3c/kWh Varies by retailer more info
          TAS 8.9c/kWh Varies by retailer more info
          ACT 9c-11c/kWh Reviewed regularly
          NSW 11.6c/kWh Varies by retailer more info
          WA 7.135c/kWh or 10-50c/kWh Varies by retailer and area in which you live more info
          NT 26.88c/kWh Reviewed regularly
          https://www.solarmarket.com.au/learn/tariffs/

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          • #

            WA Wholesale rates are surprisingly low — probably the lowest in the nation. See the AEMO dash click the WA button above the left hand graph. Was $20-40/MWh a lot of the last 24 hours!

            This market is different to the NEM. I’m looking for help in understanding it.

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            • #
              Chad

              Jo, didnt the Fed Gov announce last week they were going to reduce the FIT to 7.5c/kWh by next year ?
              Because electricity prices are reducing fast due to the surplus of new generation …particularly solar…coming on line ! …. So proclaimed ScoMo !
              They predicted a 40% reduction in “wholesale” electricity costs next year. !!

              10

              • #
                PeterF

                They are already down 30% back up a little in may because guess what the largest and cheapest gas generator in SA has been down since late April. what was that about reliable base-Load

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        Greg Cavanagh

        I believe the broom grid is a private grid not connected to the nation. So it was up to the grid owners what they would accept. They identified 10% was safe, and from your article about it ages ago; those who missed out are upset that they can’t have it.

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    pat

    detailed, so read all, if of interest to you:

    20 May: PortlandPressHerald, Maine: Cold snap tested reliability of region’s power grid and arguments against fossil fuels
    Faced with the specter of rolling blackouts last winter, competing energy interests argue about what lessons to learn.
    By Tux Turkel
    As Maine and New England shivered through last winter’s historic cold spell, the region’s electric system faced an unprecedented prospect: rolling blackouts.
    Several troubling circumstances were converging. Natural gas was scarce and pricey. A power line failure sidelined one of New England’s largest power plants. Solar panels were covered with snow and wind turbines were buffeted by storms.

    The combination forced grid operators to ramp up 1960s-era technology to keep the lights on. For the first time, they strategically juggled the generating periods of aging ***oil-fired plants, which burned 2 million barrels of oil in the two weeks between Dec. 26 and Jan. 9. With sea ice and storms delaying deliveries, these plants only had 19 percent of their average inventories left when the weather finally eased…

    “We were definitely on the brink,” said Matt Kakley, an ISO-NE spokesman. “Had the cold snap continued longer or had there been further outages in the region, it was definitely possible that (rolling blackouts) could have happened.”…

    But even the specter that operators might need to selectively switch off power to save the grid is proof to large electricity users in Maine that it’s past time to increase natural gas pipeline capacity in the region…
    But a regional environmental group says last winter’s events actually support the opposite conclusion…
    The best way to maintain a reliable grid, it says, is with continued investments in efficiency and renewable energy…

    One area of agreement is that it was frigid and snowy during the period. Boston recorded its most extreme cold wave in a century. Bangor saw record low temperatures from Dec. 23-Jan. 5. On Jan. 4 and 5, a powerful winter storm blanketed the Northeast with one of the most-intense blizzards in years. All this strained the power grid, and the specifics were recounted by ISO-NE in an April summary…

    ***These oil plants produce less than 1 percent of New England’s power, on an annual basis. But over the two-week period, they generated 27 percent. They burned 2 million barrels (84 million gallons), more than twice of what they went through in all of 2016. Even a few of the region’s remaining coal plants fired up…

    In other instances, the region’s growing fleet of wind and solar energy generators might have been able to help. But data gathered by ISO-NE found that snow and clouds during the period limited solar output to a small fraction of its potential. Generation from wind farms, too, was variable in the fast-changing weather conditions. At times, wind farms also were unable to feed power to the grid because of transmission-line congestion…

    The cold snap underscored a contrast between the growth of solar and wind, and its role on the grid…
    But while they’re making important contributions to clean energy and fuel diversity, solar and wind can’t be counted on now for winter reliability, Kakley at ISO-NE said.
    “They do play a role,” he said. “But they obviously are weather-dependent and we’re not necessarily able to call on them when we need them.”…

    Land-based wind will need new and controversial transmission lines to connect to the grid. Offshore wind planned for the region won’t be built soon enough to backstop retiring plants. Imported LNG is more expensive than domestic, pipeline gas.
    “To work best,” Buxton (Portland attorney who has lobbied for pipeline developers and represents the Industrial Energy Consumer Group) said, “renewables need a gas backbone, at least for the foreseeable future.”…
    https://www.pressherald.com/2018/05/20/cold-snap-tested-reliability-of-regions-power-grid-and-arguments-against-fossil-fuels/

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      RickWill

      Wow – snow covered solar panels do not produce power even if the sun is shinning; who could have predicted this?

      Without storage, wind and solar make a negative contribution to any grid. They can be valuable in a region reliant on hydro where the perched storage is limited or at risk during periods of drought. Essentially all weather dependent source but all working at different time scales can produce overall value. if there is no storage, the best than can be hoped for is some fuel saving but even that is doubtful where output varies rapidly over short periods if buffered by fossil fuel rather than storage.

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    pat

    comment in moderation re: 20 May: PortlandPressHerald, Maine: Cold snap tested reliability of region’s power grid and arguments against fossil fuels

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    oldbrew

    Can’t they use some of this surplus power to charge up Musk’s mega-battery?

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  • #

    Never mind the result, feel the intention.

    And what is paying for this grand green comedy? How does a country like Australia afford a War on Coal, even in the age of toilet-paper money and bottom-of-the-cistern debt?

    Why, this is how they afford it…https://www.australianmining.com.au/news/australian-coal-exports-set-new-record-in-2017/

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    • #
      OriginalSteve

      Yes…and when other peoples money runs out, there will be tarred and feathered politicans as a frequent sight I should think….

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    David Maddison

    If someone wants solar panels it should be a law that they are not allowed to be connected to the grid. If someone wants solar power let them install a battery system and pay for the whole thing themselves!

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      sophocles

      If someone wants solar panels it should be a law that they are not allowed to be connected to the grid.

      Not so. It should be a requirement to install a remote relay so they can be disconnected from the grid by the power company at any time. Ripple control relays are a common item for regulating the power draw for hot-water cylinders in NZ. Same thing for PV panels: too many supplying, so disconnect them with remote control.

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      • #
        PeterS

        That’s already in place but done automatically. The Australian Standard for Solar Inverters AS4777.1 mandates that an inverter must disconnect from the grid if:

        the average AC voltage over any 10 minute period goes over 255V
        the voltage at any time goes over 260V

        31

        • #
          Hanrahan

          The Australian Standard for Solar Inverters AS4777.1 mandates that an inverter must disconnect from the grid if:

          the average AC voltage over any 10 minute period goes over 255V
          the voltage at any time goes over 260V

          Can that be adjusted by a tech savvy owner? A mate working for Ergon says an electrician in his neighbourhood has cranked his a little higher so his never stops exporting.

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          • #
            PeterS

            Yes they can but if caught out there are hefty fines.

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          • #
            PeterF

            255V was common on the WA grid long before solar panels. In fact SECWA deliberately ran at high voltages so they could minimise investment in poles and wires. Even now in Queensland with effectively zero wind voltage occasionally goes over 250 V even in the middle of the night

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  • #
    David Maddison

    Morons.

    “The Turnbull government will deliver the largest single environmental protection package in Australian history by committing half a billion dollars to protect the Great Barrier Reef from climate change and pollution.”

    https://amp.smh.com.au/politics/federal/federal-budget-half-a-billion-dollars-for-the-great-barrier-reef-20180428-p4zc6p.html

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      PeterS

      And the vast majority of voters still support them or the alternative. Go figure. Time for a real change, if voters weren’t so stupid.

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    • #
      Robber

      The government should put Prof Peter Ridd in charge of that $500 million fund to protect the reef, and then watch JCU come crawling back.

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    Graeme#4

    At around 27c/unit, Perth’s electricity cost is reasonable compared to other states, particularly SA. The coal/gas mix seems ok and there is a fixed percentage of gas available for domestic use. So Perth doesn’t seem to suffer the price changes or possible blackouts of other states.

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    Cog Williams

    I live in the South West. My neighbour was told that they would be the last house permitted to have solar panels installed in the street because the transformer at the end of the road was already at maximum voltage with no further adjustment available. That tale has made it easy for me to explain why I don’t have panels without having to really explain!

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    • #
      Annie

      Whoever are the tw1ts giving you 3 red thumbs? I despair at the stupidity.

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        Greg Cavanagh

        They’re pretty random aren’t they. I can’t figure out any pattern to the red thumbs (RT’s for short).

        22

        • #
          sophocles

          Insanity is pretty random. It seems sheer stupidity may be, too.

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        • #
          Hanrahan

          A recent post of mine got 7 RTs. Is that a record, or a badge of honour? #JoNova must be running hot among the watermelons on twitter.

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            robert rosicka

            Think of it as a badge ,using the word coal usually is worth a few .

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            sophocles

            I’ve seen over 30 for one of our pet trolls recently. I think you’ve got a way to go yet Hanrahan :-)

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  • #
    cedarhill

    Ah, Australia….suicide by Green.

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    pat

    20 May: UK Telegraph: Jillian Ambrose: Shell urged to resist calls to fall into line with Paris climate accord
    Britain’s largest shareholder advisory groups have called on investors in Royal Dutch Shell to reject growing demands for the oil giant to take full responsibility for its impact on the environment.
    Shell faces a binding shareholder vote tomorrow to decide whether to adopt rigorous accountability standards to bring its operations into line with the Paris climate agreement. Glass Lewis and ISS have urged shareholders to reject the “unduly burdensome” and “problematic” proposal…

    The stand-off between the Shell board and green groups threatens to turn into a legal battle. Friends of the Earth has threatened to file a lawsuit in the Netherlands if Shell fails to commit to fall into line with the Paris accord at its AGM in The Hague this week…

    Climate change concerns are also set to dominate BP’s AGM today after campaigners accused the company of trying to dodge shareholder activism by holding its meeting the day before Shell’s, and in Manchester.
    It will be the first time in the group’s history that its AGM takes place outside London. Activists believe the move intentionally makes it harder to attend both the BP and Shell events
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2018/05/20/urged-resist-calls-fall-line-paris-climate-accord/

    behind paywall:

    21 May: UK Times: EDF seeks bidders for 49% stake in wind farm assets
    by Philip Aldrick
    The French energy group is reported to have hired Barclays to sound out potential bidders for just under half of EDF Energy Renewables, its UK operation that owns 23 onshore wind farms and one offshore.
    It hopes to have offers, which could reach £600 million, by the end of the month, the Financial Times reported…
    The group has a history of using completed projects to finance new ones…
    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/edf-seeks-bidders-for-49-stake-in-wind-farm-assets-78szv7fwn

    21 May: CarbonPulse: President Xi holds firm on China’s pollution fight, backs away from climate leadership role
    Chinese President Xi Jinping this weekend reiterated plans to step up his country’s fight against pollution, but softened language on the role China wants to play in international climate politics.

    20

  • #
    michael

    The hisk risk state is that higher than the high risk state?

    12

  • #
  • #
    Gordon

    So, are you saying that free energy is not free? Who would have thought that?

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    Another Ian

    What are the climate mending chances of “ephemeral energy (batteries not included) in the face of this?

    “Oh Noes!!! 100 TRILLION TONS of Molten Carbon Under Pressure!!!”

    https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2018/05/21/oh-noes-100-trillion-tons-of-molten-carbon-under-pressure/

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  • #
    manalive

    The Australian March 12, 2018:

    Energy consumers will be forced to pay more than $1 billion for rooftop solar installation subsidies this year, increasing power costs by up to $100 per household, according to an industry analysis …

    The Australian May 22, 2018:

    Mr Frydenberg said a compulsory acquisition of Liddell would be against Liberal values …

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      Greg Cavanagh

      Who pays the $1 billion, oh the householders through their taxes. Doh!

      11

    • #
      robert rosicka

      Liddell was bought for $0 so it’s no big cost to compulsory Aquire it , they can then put out a tender for someone to buy it which is win win .

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  • #
    Phillip Bratby

    It’s positive feedback. Subsidise solar panels, so the price of electricity goes up, so more people install solar to get the subsidies, so the electricity price rises further. It is exponential until the crash occurs.

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    • #
      David Maddison

      It won’t end well.

      21

      • #
        PeterS

        Crashes never end will but at least the do reset people’s priorities in life. Every cloud has a silver lining so to speak. Now where is that ad I saw for the new Chinese smart-phones I was interested in buying?……Haha.

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  • #
    Peter Fitzroy

    Let me get this straight – power and transmission companies, which have pushed up prices to the consumer, and divested the profits to their shareholders, now claim that nasty old solar is a problem! As the article says – high costs are driving consumers to install solar, thereby creating the problem.

    21

    • #
      PeterS

      Power companies are only doing what they are supposed to be doing – making profits for the shareholders, which includes many who have super. To stop this madness though is very simple. Simply remove all incentives for renewables, stop all support for renewable energy targets and withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord. That’s all it takes, and if the people want that to happen then they have only one option to try and make it happen – vote for ACP. Otherwise, forget it because neither an LNP majority government nor a majority ALP government will do any of that and in fact will only make matters worse. It’s all up to the voters and no one else.

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        PeterS

        If fact it’s too simple and easy. All it takes is to place the right numbers in those little squares one finds on the ballot papers. It doesn’t even require that much brain power.

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  • #
    TdeF

    You have to love the Johannes Leak cartoon in the Australia. ABC journalists learning how to report. An Australian says the three major problems he sees are “Power prices, Crime and Immigration” which are interpreted by the Lecturerer as “There you have it. Climate Change, Police brutality and Racism”.

    If Pauline Hanson really wants to make a vast difference, demand the repeal of the RET, Renewable Energy(Electricity) Act 2000. It is the only reason AGL want to blow up Liddell. It is the entire reason people put in solar panels, using other people’s money. The idea that they get paid cash for unwanted lunchtime power is ridiculous. Worse, there is no saving for them if power prices double and triple, the direct consequence of coping with useless solar panels and a huge ripoff for everyone else.

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      PeterS

      Well there you go. Two parties one can vote for to achieve what we need. Vote ACP and ON above all the rest. Simples.

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      TdeF

      In fact people should NOT put power back into the grid.
      Reduce their own use by all means, but they could always buy batteries with their own money.

      It is crippling to have to accept unwanted power, let alone pay them for it. Rather the ‘subsidy’ should be repaid with a special levy on our power they do use. Into a fund to pay for those who cannot afford the consequential high power bills and the money we are having to pay for people who cannot afford power.

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        PeterS

        The main point about putting power back into the grid is so the owners can recoup the cost of the solar system. If it wasn’t for that no one would bother to install them, except for remote areas who are off grid. I suppose then it’s a good plan to do as you suggested. What’s the likelihood of either the LNP or the ALP doing it? Zero I’m afraid. Just vote for ACP and ON to try and upset the apple cart and if possible turn things around. Otherwise, we are all might as well start sacrifices to the gods for all the good that will do.

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        • #
          TdeF

          How do we ‘recoup’ our cost? What they spend is half of the cost. The rest comes from all the rest of Australia.

          32

          • #
            PeterS

            Well we might be able to “recoup” our cost and seek revenge to boot by helping ACP and ON to hold the balance of power at the next election.

            21

        • #
          yarpos

          I dont recoup my cost by selling back power, I recoup my costs (I just think of it as keeping a lid on my power cost) by using my own power rather than 29c a kWh from the grid. Given current FITs thats a bigger return than whats being offered at least in VIC.

          We sized our system with this in mind , just to focus on covering our own use as far as possible. We didnt register for FITs and appear to the retailer as a standard customer. Also in the back of our minds was the whole thing of FITs just driving up the cost for everyone anyway. Simpler just to opt out.

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        manalive

        Indeed, there ought to be a penalty charged for disrupting and destabilising an otherwise perfectly adequate working system.

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        • #
          TdeF

          There is. We are paying it. Perversely, so are the people with solar panels. The worse they make it for everyone else, the more their bills go up and the more they think it is a good idea. Robbing the poor to pay for the rich.

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      John of Cloverdale, WA, Australia

      Great cartoon. Can’t we reproduce it here?

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    Dennis

    Of course the other problem rarely discussed is the loss of jobs and tax revenue from companies that used large amounts of electricity, aluminium smelters, cement producers and others.

    Those businesses were encouraged to establish their factories in Australia because of reliable and low cost electricity supply.

    Economic vandalism.

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    Chad

    Well done that caller !……one of our own here ?
    Someone phoned in to the 2GB Steve Price/ Andrew Bolt chat show last night and gave them the inside facts on Liddel costs, RE impact on the grid, details of why electricity costs are increasing (RE needing back up coal and gas etc) etc etc etc..
    Even Bolt and Pricey were shocked by the facts (Liddel producing power at $27/kWh 10 yrs ago !).
    That call was also repeated on the Ray Hadley show today, ..it seems to have made an impact in some of the media at least..
    Lets hope it spreads the word more.

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      PeterF

      $27/kWh is very expensive power about 300 times the cost of rooftop solar. You probably mean $27/MWh. That is the variable cost from a relatively new coal mine supplying at co-incidentally $27/tonne. The market price for medium grade coal is now $85-90/tonne. The maintenance costs on Liddell are running between $20 and $50 m per year so Liddell is losing money at anything below $45-50/MWh, adding transmission, distribution and retail costs to that comes out at 25-30 c per kWh so displacing as much of that as you can with home or business generated solar makes sense
      In the meantime the Yarranlea solar farm is starting construction without a PPA because the owners know they can supply power cheaper than gas and that no-one can finance a new coal plant because no generator can show that they will repay the money, because according

      01

  • #
    pat

    what drives me crazy is how this story has not penetrated the MSM outside WA. almost every time there is something negative about “renewables”, it is kept from the general public in this way.

    unbelievably, WA Liberal Senator Dean Smith is all over the national MSM re the following, YET NEVER is this story mentioned, when it should be the main reason why it is so important to run a candidate in the by-election.
    in fact, it should be the MAIN ISSUE on which a campaign would be run:

    20 May: news.com.au: PerthNow: Crisis over Liberal decision not to run Perth by-election candidate deepens.
    THE crisis engulfing the Liberal Party over its decision not to field a candidate in the Perth by-election has descended into chaos.
    by Joe Spagnolo
    THE crisis engulfing the Liberal Party over its Perth by-election no-show fiasco has deepened, with one senior Liberal now threatening to take the matter to the Corruption and Crime Commission and another moving to overturn the decision at State council.
    Former O’Connor MHR Wilson Tuckey was fuming yesterday after a meeting in Mt Lawley scheduled by the Perth Division to discuss the controversial decision not to contest the seat of Perth was rescheduled at the 11th hour.

    Mr Tuckey said the switch had made it impossible for some party members to attend, denying them the chance to front WA Liberal Senator and powerbroker Mathias Cormann — as well as State president Norman Moore, State director Sam Calabrese and selection committee chairman Jeremy Buxton — about not running a candidate in Perth.
    Among those who could not attend the rescheduled meeting at 8am in West Perth was WA Liberal Senator Dean Smith, a vocal critic of the decision not to run in Perth. He was in Sydney and had made plans to fly back yesterday to attend at 11.15am.

    A defiant Senator Smith yesterday vowed to fight for the decision to be overturned at next Saturday’s State council…
    http://www.news.com.au/national/western-australia/crisis-over-liberal-decision-not-to-run-perth-byelection-candidate-deepens/news-story/d19bee5642ed62065ef9b0a9154ff9f9

    AUDIO: 11mins26secs: 22 May: 2GB: Mike McLaren: “It’s the wrong decision”: Senator Dean Smith calls for WA Liberals to contest by-elections
    https://www.2gb.com/podcast/its-the-wrong-decision-senator-dean-smith-calls-for-wa-liberals-to-contest-by-elections/

    setting aside the by-elections, why isn’t this solar/grid story in all national MSM, on national TV etc? ABC, where are you?

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    • #
      el gordo

      Labor is confident of holding the seat and the Liberals reckon they will be trounced, so don’t run a candidate in this by-election but field a Liberal candidate at next year’s Federal election.

      Makes good sense and gives the ACP a chance to fill the void.

      21

  • #
    toorightmate

    Wind and solar energy – technology required has not been achieved – too bad – construct and operate them with subsidies.

    Battery storage -technology required has not been achieved – too bad – use them with subsidies.

    Next things will be transformers/substations – technology required has not been achieved – too bad – we’ll fix it with subsidies.

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    • #
      TdeF

      There are no government ‘subsidies’. The money does not come from any government or taxpayer. It is stolen directly from your electricity bill, by order of the government who receive nothing. It is not shown on your bill. This ripoff for nothing (it is not to buy power) is marked up, often doubled by your electricity retailer. There is no tax exemption, as it is not a tax. Everyone pays. It is theft and most people are not aware it is happening while they are told about ‘subsidies’. This is a weasel word.

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      • #
        Robber

        I don’t know what else to call it but a subsidy. It is a subsidy from some consumers to others mandated by government regulation.
        I just noticed that the Victorian Essential Services Commission is to set two feed-in tariffs (FiTs) to apply from 1 July 2018, of which retailers must offer at least one.
        “The final single-rate FiT of 9.9 cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh) represents a 1.4c reduction from the2017–18 FiT. This outcome may appear counterintuitive, given that average wholesale prices between the two forecast periods have increased by around 18 per cent. It is caused by changes in the prices during the daylight hours when solar photovoltaic (PV) units are exporting electricity, relative to prices during the evening peak. Prices during daylight hours are the prices relevant to setting the single-rate FiT”.
        “The time varying tariff rates are distributed as expected, with peak rates (29.0 cents) higher than shoulder rates (10.3 cents), which themselves are higher than the off-peak rates (7.0 cents). Peak rates are significantly higher than the shoulder and off-peak rates because wholesale prices during the evening peak in 2018–19 are forecast to be notably higher than during other periods of the day.”
        Offpeak rates (7.0 cents) apply 10pm-7am every day.
        Shoulder rates (10.3 cents) apply 7am-3pm and 9-10pm weekdays, and 7am-10pm weekends.
        Peak rates (29.0 cents) apply 3-9pm weekdays.

        Some electricity retailers in Victoria offer time of day pricing. Some typical rates are as follows:
        Single rate: Daily charge 92 cents (excl GST); Usage charge 18 cents/kWhr (excl GST)
        Time of use: Daily charge 92 cents (excl GST); Peak usage (7am-11pm weekdays) 21.5 cents (excl GST), Offpeak 11.5 cents/kWhr (excl GST)

        It will be interesting to see how retailers adjust their tariffs to accommodate the new FiTs. And equally, how will those with rooftop solar adjust?

        11

        • #
          Robber

          And reading further into the ESC report: “In February 2017, the Government issued an Order in Council specifying a method for determining the social cost of carbon. Applying that method yields a value of 2.5 cents per kilowatt hour of electricity exported by a small renewable generator, which we add to both the single-rate and timevarying tariffs”.

          11

        • #
          TdeF

          Robber, you of all people should call it what it is. Theft. Someone taking your money for nothing under pain of punishment and for nothing, to reward some people for the very fact of generating non fossil fuel power. They own your money, the windmills, the solar panels and then you have to buy from them. What do you get for this? Nothing for which you do not have to pay again, at a premium. Robber, it’s theft.

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  • #
    RickWill

    The one hope in these reports is that AEMO are looking closely so the learnings can be reflected in their Integrated System Plan.

    11

  • #
    Robber

    AEMO no longer makes public its medium term outlook. “AEMO completed the MTPASA redevelopment project on 10 May 2018. The MTPASA graphs are available through the Participants Markets Portal area at https://portal.prod.nemnet.net.au“. “As you are all aware, the energy industry transformation is gaining momentum at both ends of the energy supply chain – from large-scale generation and transmission, to the distribution and consumer level. As called for in the Finkel Review, and supported by AEMO, there is a pressing need for a nationally integrated strategic plan, which considers how these transformations affect the need for infrastructure development and how the essential technical requirements of the power grid will continue to be efficiently met across the National Electricity Market (NEM). Under its role as NEM National Transmission Planner, AEMO is preparing an inaugural Integrated System Plan (ISP) for the NEM, due for release by mid-2018″.
    Why don’t they allow public scrutiny of their medium term outlook?

    21

  • #
    pat

    16 May: AFR Special Report: Storage a critical factor for new renewables projects
    by Mark Abernethy
    The Gannawarra Solar Farm in Victoria’s north-west will have a new addition before the beginning of the coming summer: a 25-megawatt (50mw/hr) battery that connects into EnergyAustralia’s system and then the National Electricity Market…
    “By co-locating large-scale storage with a solar farm, we keep the charging of the battery behind the meter and don’t incur user costs on the network,” says Edify Energy CEO, John Cole. “It allows us to charge the battery at very low cost. As we go forward, most Australian renewables projects will be built with storage.”…
    Another large-scale battery project is planned in Victoria, and large batteries are being installed in the Western Australia grid at remote sites…

    Controlling volatility
    The FCAS system – regulated by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) – uses generation and storage to control volatility in the network, usually changes in voltage and frequency.
    “Battery power can go from zero to full load in milliseconds,” says Cole. “That speed makes batteries much more responsive to the FCAS task, certainly a lot faster than pumped hydro or spinning reserve.”…

    He says the introduction of wind and solar farms into the grid have created some volatility with frequency and system-strength and the energy storage systems being built will help to manage these issues as much as create back-up power reserves – especially in states where the renewables penetration is either over 40 per cent (SA) or is headed towards 40 per cent (Victoria)…READ ON
    http://www.afr.com/news/special-reports/storage-a-critical-factor-for-new-renewables-projects-20180515-h1045u

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    • #
      yarpos

      Much is made of the fast battery response, why is this such a big deal? a slower response has been good enough for the last 50-60 years. What is the actual benefit? Bit like having a car in Australia that can do say 270kmh, and never taking it to track day. Yeah its fast , but in normal operation it doesnt make any functional difference.

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  • #
    pat

    Guardian smear expert Readfearn takes on Ridd.

    ***note Ridd’s firing has nothing to do with challenging Great Barrier Reef science, but

    ***JCU’s initial actions against Ridd related to comments he made to the Australian and to SkyNews. He said “we can no longer trust” research from Aims and the university’s own Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Science!

    21 May: Guardian: University fires controversial marine scientist for alleged conduct breaches
    Peter Ridd fired after ignoring previous warnings from James Cook University
    by Graham Readfearn
    ***Suggestions that Ridd had been fired for challenging Great Barrier Reef science were “simply wrong”, (deputy vice chancellor, Prof Iain) Gordon’s statement said…

    Ridd has reopened a crowdfunding campaign to pay for his legal bills, estimated at $260,000, after initially raising $95,000 in just a few days (NO LINK, & NO UPDATE ON AMOUNT, READFEARN?)…

    Conservative media outlets and climate science deniers jumped to Ridd’s defence over the weekend, attempting to frame the issue as an attack on academic freedom and freedom of speech.
    British climate science denier James Delingpole wrote on Breitbart that Ridd was “fired for telling the truth” and encouraged readers to help fund his court case.

    John Roskam of the Institute for Public Affairs, which is supporting Ridd and, according to a letter from Ridd’s lawyer, paid $8,566 towards his early legal costs, said: “The search for truth has been replaced by unquestioning allegiance to group-think.”
    News Corp Australia commentator Andrew Bolt called for JCU vice-chancellor Sandra Harding to be sacked.

    ***JCU’s initial actions against Ridd related to comments he made to the Australian and to SkyNews. He said “we can no longer trust” research from Aims and the university’s own Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Science.
    In March, researchers at the government-funded Aims responded again to Ridd’s criticisms of their work, laying out in detail why they felt Ridd’s critiques were invalid…

    A JCU profile page, which is no longer live, said Ridd “raises almost all of his research funds from the profits of consultancy work which is usually associated with monitoring of marine dredging operation”.
    That consultancy was carried out through the Marine Geophysics Laboratory, which Ridd led, and which has carried out work on several coal terminal expansion projects…
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/may/21/university-fires-controversial-marine-scientist-for-alleged-conduct-breaches

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    pat

    wonder why Readfearn doesn’t mention Joanne Nova’s website?

    21 May: Desmog: Climate Science Deniers From Around Globe Rally Around Sacked Scientist Peter Ridd
    By Graham Readfearn
    Climate science denial groups from the UK, U.S., and Australia have leapt to support a controversial marine scientist who was fired from his job at an Australian university…

    Climate Denial Echo Chamber
    Over the weekend, the echo chamber of conservative websites and think tanks that push climate science denial swung into action, urging readers to visit Ridd’s crowdfunding page.
    Rather than focus on the alleged breaches of the code of conduct, Ridd and his supporters are attempting to reframe the case around academic freedom, free speech, and scientific integrity.

    In the UK, the Global Warming Policy Forum — the campaigning arm of the Global Warming Policy Foundation — reposted an article from The Australian and linked to Ridd’s website.
    Breitbart’s UK-based climate science denier James Delingpole wrote that Ridd had been fired for “telling the truth.”
    In the U.S, the climate science denying Heartland Institute in its typically understated tone, said Ridd’s firing was “an international scandal & part of the fight for global free speech.”
    U.S.-based climate science denier Anthony Watts, on his WattsUpWithThat website, claimed Ridd was fired “for having an opinion on climate they didn’t like.”…

    In Australia, Melbourne’s Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) — a long pusher of climate science denial — has already paid more than $6,000 towards Ridd’s legal fees while helping coordinate his funding campaign. IPA executive director John Roskam and several IPA staffers have been active on social media pushing Ridd’s case.
    News Corp Australia commentator Andrew Bolt called for JCU Vice-Chancellor Sandra Harding to also be sacked.
    On the conservative-leaning Sky News, Ridd was interviewed on the show Outsiders by host Rowan Dean, who also rejects the science of human-caused climate change…

    Ridd, whose JCU laboratory used to consult for major coal terminal projects, claims to have checked his fellow scientists’ claims about the impacts of dredging, nutrient run-off, and climate change on the health of the Great Barrier reef, and has found it wanting.
    Except that scientists at the Australian Institute of Marine Science have rubbished Ridd’s so-called critiques.
    https://www.desmogblog.com/2018/05/21/climate-science-deniers-around-globe-rally-around-sacked-scientist-peter-ridd

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  • #
    Ross

    I saw Tony Abbott on Andrew Bolt’s show last night.

    Great to see a politician speak so plainly and pragmatically. Solve the Liddel power station by the Govt. compulsorily buying it off AGL and on sell to the guys who want to buy it. Face facts; coal is needed, it is the cheapest energy source and Aussie’s need reliable cheap electricity. End of story (according to TA)

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    • #
      Dennis

      It is important to know that the NSW State Labor Government (Premier now Senator Keneally) sold government owned private company assets including Bayswater Power Station in the Hunter Valley and gifted AGL nearby Liddell Power Station to them free of charge.

      And that the sale of government/taxpayer owned electricity assets valued at $12 billion to $15 billion realised just $5.9 billion.

      It was then revealed that the NSW Labor Government had required the electricity businesses, formed to replace the NSW Electricity Commission by the Greiner Coalition Government as part of their clean up of public assets with union related problems (Railway Workshops at Chullora in Sydney an example with daily absenteeism averaging 6 out of every 10 employees taking sick leave) by creating government owned private companies to manage the assets in a business like manner, to borrow money to pay extra in dividends to the government. As soon as Labor formed government they replaced management with their own people.

      When the $5.9 billion realised from the sale was received and those debts repaid all that was left was $800 million.

      The RET profiteering is huge.

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      • #
        robert rosicka

        I’ve seen reports over and over about it was the Libs that sold it Dennis but could have sworn it was Keneally .

        01

  • #
    ROM

    I haven’t looked through all of the posts above but it seems that apart from the simple solution of going back to coal fired generators, a simple and basic mental bridge that is a bridge far to far for the mental abilities of 90 odd percent of our politicals, there is a technical solution available to cover the excessive solar installations for the isolated grid systems in WA.

    Thats if the politicals can get their minds around the fact that they are completely responsible for this entire fiasco turning disaster in the first place due to their naivete and utter inability to even think of let alone take into account the potential and unknown consequences of nearly all their actions and policy implementations , something that politicals seem for some unknown reason to be totally incapable of ever troubling their tiny mentalities over in just about everything they stick their unwanted noses into.

    Of course the politicals could solve most of the serious troubles being created in the national grids everywhere by the so called renewable energy, just by removing the mandatory obligation placed on all grid operators to give first and priority access to renewable energy regardless of the renewable energy costs.

    The second and major change to recreate grid stability would be to remove ALL subsidies to renewable energy, something that is now beginning to occur in Europe .

    Germany, the poster child for renewable energy is removing most of its renewable energy subsidies in 2020 plus taking 2000 old turbines off line [ out of 27000 turbines ] in 2020 which won’t be replaced apparently. This change is already leading to a very large drop in proposed new turbines and solar set ups and the cancellation of a number of proposed turbine and solar installations in Germany.
    ………………………..

    The simple solution for the WA grids are for the grid operators to require the mandatory installation of a Smart meter, paid for by the solar system owner, both for future solar installations and post solar installation if they want to be connected or remain connected to the grid.

    The alternative being a very high and puntative grid access charge each on solar panel owners and users regular account to cover the extra cost of constantly adjusting the output of the commercial generators to maintain grid stability.

    Victoria already has Smart meters installed in all domestic situations across the State.

    We mightn’t like it but it enables the power retailers in each area to remotely switch the power off and on at each meter / residence whenever they want to such as which there is ownership change of the house or building is changed or in any other situation requiring isolation of that Smart meter equipped premises.
    It also enables the power retailer to read the Smart meters useage numbers from the central operations of the retailer without ever requiring a physical meter reading.
    Or in the case of a fire or some other localised disaster, to very rapidly shut off a group of domestic dwellings and / or reconnect such dwellings in seconds again when safe to do so.

    WA grid system operators could demand and enforce the installation of a smart meter [ as did Victoria a couple of years ago based on the theory that being able to read your power useage at any one time,people would dramatically reduce their power useage. Didn't work as the britishare also finding out with the installation of Smart meters that they have really made a mess of ] each solar system installation , the alternative being a very high and puntative grid access tariff for non smart meter equipped, solar panel system owners.

    The Smart meters would then enable the grid operators to switch off sections of the grid’s domestic solar system equipped units or individual domestic dwelling with solar units on a rolling area basis whenever solar panel output was close to creating an uncontrollable grid stability situation.

    This would return the full control of the grid back to the operators and send the message that if you want the reliability of the grid to continue and you want the useage of the grid at your conveince but you want to just use the grid when it suits you and rely on solar for the rest of the time then there is a price you, the solar system owners will have to pay to keep the convience of the grid for their use when the Sun don’t shine.

    ……………,.,…,.,.,.,.,,..,,.,,,,,

    Reading the huge number of press releases and etc that originate almost exclusively from the Renewable energy scammers, one can get the impression that the future of renewable energy is almost a given as a replacement for coal and fossil fueled generators ;

    So here are a few quite recent and up to date alternative views on Renewable energy, in no particular order, almost all from Europe / Germany which has had by far the longest and most voluminous experience with renewable energy .
    .

    Germany’s green energy shift is more fizzle than sizzle
    .

    Germany shows how shifting to renewable energy can backfire
    .

    Overcapacity and the challenges of going 100% renewable
    .

    Germany’s Shift to Green Power Stalls, Despite Huge Investments
    .

    German Energiewende Turned Into a Dead End

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    • #
      RickWill

      This post has a major contradiction. You constantly use the term renewable energy when referring to wind and solar generation but make the point that they are not economically viable. The latter means they are non-renewable.

      Better choices for descriptors are wind and solar generation, weather dependent generation, intermittents and, my favourite, run-whenever-you-like. BUT they are NOT RENEWABLE. The fact that Germany is not replacing aged units verifies that fact.

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      • #
        yarpos

        I thought the general sense of renewable was about the source of the “fuel” rather than the plant, in that we have a finite amount of fossil fuel but (we hope) the sun will shine and the wind will blow at times for the forseeable future.

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        • #
          Hanrahan

          we have a finite amount of fossil fuel

          Actually we have an infinite amount if we are not allowed to mine it.

          01

    • #
      WXcycles

      Or just ban users of intermittents from putting electrons into the grid.

      “User pays” is a double-edged sword.

      00

  • #
    pat

    18 May: Phys.org: Can we get 100 percent of our energy from renewable sources?
    ***Lappeenranta University of Technology
    Is there enough space for all the wind turbines and solar panels to provide all our energy needs? What happens when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow? Won’t renewables destabilise the grid and cause blackouts?

    In a review paper last year in the high-ranking journal Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, researcher Benjamin Heard and colleagues presented their case against 100 percent renewable electrical systems. They doubted the feasibility of many of the recent scenarios for high shares of renewable energy, questioning everything from whether renewables-based systems can survive extreme weather events with low sun and low wind, to the ability to keep the grid stable with so much variable generation.

    Now, scientists have hit back with their response to the points raised by Heard and colleagues. The researchers from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and collaborators have analysed hundreds of studies to answer each of the apparent issues. They demonstrate that there are no roadblocks to a 100 percent renewable future…

    “Furthermore, these solutions are absolutely affordable, especially given the sinking costs of wind and solar power,” says Professor Christian Breyer of Lappeenranta University of Technology, who co-authored the response…READ ON (LINKS)
    https://phys.org/news/2018-05-percent-energy-renewable-sources.amp

    ***Lappeenranta University of Technology last year – don’t know what if anything has changed:

    March 2017: EuanMearns: Roger Andrews: The Lappeenranta renewable energy model – is it realistic?
    As reported in a recent Blowout Week the Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT) in Finland has published a “realistic” energy model which claims to show how the entire world can move to 100% renewable electricity by 2030 at the modest cost of between 55 and 70 euros per megawatt-hour. According to glowing press reports (LINK) the model debunks myths about what renewables can and cannot achieve – for example that a fully renewable energy system cannot possibly run stable for all hours of the year due to the intermittent character of solar and wind energy and that an electricity system cannot work without backup baseload generation capacity. In this post we investigate these weighty claims…READ ON
    http://euanmearns.com/the-lappeenranta-renewable-energy-model-is-it-realistic/

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  • #
    pat

    21 May: BaltimoreSun: At UM commencement, Al Gore urges graduates ‘to reclaim the integrity of American democracy’
    By Scott Dance
    Gore, nowadays best known for his advocacy to fight global warming that earned him a Nobel Prize in 2007, urged the graduates to vote in large numbers in the coming years, suggesting that America’s “experiment” with the Trump administration should, like some scientific ventures, “be terminated early for ethical reasons.”
    “Your generation has a mission ahead of it,” Gore said. “I hope that you will find the will to succeed. In America, the will to succeed is, in fact, a renewable resource.”…

    “What if, in this year and the years immediately following, something truly extraordinary happened?” Gore said. He said he hoped to see “an American youth movement” that will vote in “unprecedented numbers and reclaim the integrity of American democracy.”

    On global warming, a topic he helped raise in public consciousness through the documentary “An Inconvenient Truth,” he pointed to hurricanes that flooded Texas and Louisiana and destroyed much of Puerto Rico last year, criticizing the Trump administration for not doing more to help Puerto Ricans in particular. Students cheered as he called on society to act more quickly to combat climate change.
    “We fail to measure the full consequences of the choices we make,” he said. “We have to reclaim our own destiny by measuring what really matters to our future, starting with a decision to reduce the global warming pollution.”…
    http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/education/higher-ed/bs-md-maryland-graduation-gore-20180520-story.html

    Updated 21 May: Fox News Atlanta: AP: Al Gore University of Maryland commencement speaker for 2018 graduation
    Former Vice President Al Gore will deliver the commencement address on Sunday to graduates at the University of Maryland.
    Gore was honored with an honorary Doctorate Degree of Public Service by the University…
    In a news release university President Wallace Loh cited Gore’s ability to “look over the horizon” in selecting Gore as a speaker…

    just as silly:

    21 May: Fox News: Hillary Clinton to get Harvard medal for ‘transformative impact on society’
    by Joseph Weber
    Hillary Clinton will receive Harvard’s prestigious Radcliffe Medal for her “transformative impact on society,” according to the Ivy League university.
    She will receive the award Friday as part of the school’s graduation-week activities…
    Organizers at Harvard say Clinton was chosen for the award because she’s a “champion for human rights,” a “skilled legislator” and “an advocate of American leadership” on the world stage…

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  • #
    pat

    18 May: Bloomberg: Al Gore Sees Bipartisanship Returning in Fight on Climate Change
    By Emily Chasan and Dina Bass
    “Even people who don’t like to use the term ‘climate crisis,’ they say, ‘Well, this weather’s sure getting weird,’” Gore said Thursday at the Bloomberg Sustainable Business Summit in Seattle. “The scale of the climate crisis is far beyond what people can comprehend — areas around the world will become uninhabitable and will see a large influx of climate refugees.”…

    Gore reminded the audience that the U.S. is still technically part of the Paris Agreement on climate change, as it will take years to complete the withdrawal announced by President Donald Trump. The former vice president highlighted the efforts of the bipartisan “Noah’s ark” climate solutions caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives.
    “We are very close to a governing majority on climate in the House and the Senate,” said Gore, who shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with a United Nations panel on the environment for raising awareness of the threat from climate change…
    He also endorsed a ballot initiative in Washington state that would create a state-wide pollution tax to protect the environment. The measure will be up for a vote in November.

    Gore, who is chairman of Generation Investment Management, a sustainability-focused investment firm he co-founded in 2004 with former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. executive David Blood, said he sees great opportunity in business and politicians continuing to push for a greener economy.
    “Our view is that the world is in the early stages of a sustainability revolution that has the impact and scale of industrial revolution at the speed of the digital revolution,” Gore said. “We are going to succeed at the sustainability revolution and for those that doubt we have the political will to accomplish it — remember — political will is also a renewable resource.”…
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-18/al-gore-sees-bipartisanship-returning-in-fight-on-climate-change

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    • #
      toorightmate

      Al baby,
      “Political will” is very rare, very costly and very unreliable.
      Just like renewable energy.
      Good ol’ Al.
      What does the mob say?
      “—- Ol’ Al”.

      11

  • #
    pat

    19 May: BusinessInsider: AP: Scholar: Dumping fossil fuels by 2050 needed to save climate
    NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — A prominent American economist says getting rid of fossil fuels by mid-century and making the switch to large-scale renewable energy sources and nuclear power offers the best chance of meeting the climate change targets set out by the Paris accord.
    Columbia University Professor Jeffrey Sachs says the world’s ways of producing and using energy need to change “much faster, much more dramatically” than political leaders looking to tap hydrocarbon reserves understand.

    Sachs says the best approach is to set up interconnected power grids where emissions-free electricity from renewable energy sources in one region could be transmitted elsewhere.
    Sachs was speaking Saturday at a conference in Cyprus on the climate change challenges faced by Mediterranean countries and the Middle East, including drought and crop failures.
    http://uk.businessinsider.com/ap-scholar-dumping-fossil-fuels-by-2050-needed-to-save-climate-2018-5/?r=AU&IR=T

    21 May: Rolling Stone: Hit Fossil Fuels Where It Hurts – the Bottom Line
    The divestment movement is having a big impact, and holdouts may be missing their one great chance to really change the world
    By Bill McKibben
    The movement for fossil-fuel divestment was partly born in the pages of this magazine six years ago, when an essay of mine went unexpectedly viral…

    Students at hundreds of campuses around the world launched divestment campaigns that echoed the one against South African apartheid a generation ago. The first school to divest was tiny Unity College in Maine, which pulled its $13 million endowment in November 2012. By this winter, the University of California system, biggest in the hemisphere, had joined, along with a third of the universities in the U.K., and the World Council of Churches, and dozens of Christian denominations and Catholic diocese, as well as many of the biggest foundations on the planet. Even the Rockefeller heirs, who trace their fortune to the original oil baron, have sold their shares. By now endowments and portfolios worth more than $6 trillion have divested in part or in whole, and it’s become by far the biggest effort of its kind in history…

    There have been holdouts, of course – Harvard, run by a “board of overseers” drawn heavily from Wall Street, refused to participate officially…

    The oil industry is slowly being cornered, like the tobacco industry before it. Just as they once promised to go “Smoke Free,” towns across the country are now pledging to go “Fossil Free,” banning new fossil-fuel projects and committing to 100 percent renewable energy for all…

    So the moment has come when the steady stream of divestment announcements needs to turn into a flood…
    https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/mckibben-hit-fossil-fuels-where-it-hurts-the-bottom-line-w520337

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  • #
    pat

    21 May: Bloomberg: Cambridge’s $8.5-Billion Endowment to Respond to Divestment Push
    By Anna Hirtenstein
    Cambridge University’s 6.3 billion-pound ($8.5 billion) endowment fund may make a decision on whether it will divest from fossil fuels.
    The British university’s governing council is set to respond to a report from its Divestment Working Group, a body of academics, researchers and students at Cambridge asked to study the issue. The document was submitted to the university’s trustees in April at the last council meeting. It isn’t certain the board will act or make a decision this week, but it is meeting on Monday morning.

    Cambridge has come under intense pressure from students after a group of scientists and academics including David King, the U.K.’s former special representative for climate change, wrote an open letter to the university, pushing for the endowment fund to stop investing in oil and gas companies.
    “Divestment is both necessary and urgent to stigmatize the fossil fuel industry who are most responsible for a warming climate,” they wrote, calling on the fund’s investment team to “immediately freeze any new investments in fossil fuel companies, and to divest from direct ownership and any commingled funds that include fossil fuel public equities and corporate bonds within five years.”…

    Divestment from businesses extracting and trading fossil fuels has been a growing trend in recent years. Institutional investors with $68.4 trillion under management have signed up to the Principles for Responsible Investment, pledging to incorporate environmental, social and governance factors, known as ESG, into their investment decisions.

    The Rockefeller Family Fund sold its stake in Exxon Mobil Corp. in 2016 and said it plans to dump all other fossil-fuel investments. French insurer AXA SA said it would scrap its coal holdings valued at 500 million euros ($589 million). Norway’s $1 trillion sovereign wealth fund said last year that it would sell its oil and gas stocks.
    Several university funds have made similar moves…

    The campaign at Cambridge comes at a time when other investors are also pressuring oil and gas companies directly. Sixty large institutional investors including Aberdeen Standard Investments Ltd. and Amundi SA, Europe’s largest asset manager, are demanding that the companies “take responsibility for all of its emissions” and “clarify how they see their future in a low-carbon world” in a letter published in the Financial Times on May 18…
    Cambridge has received donations from the U.K.’s largest oil company to form the BP Institute for Multiphase Flow, which was established in 2000 and researches oil and gas extraction…
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-21/cambridge-s-8-5-billion-endowment-to-respond-to-divestment-push

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    pat

    brain-washed:

    MULTIPLE PICS: 21 May: VarsityOnline: Zero Carbon holds ‘D-Day rally’ as University Council makes divestment decision
    Around 200 students rallied outside of Old Schools this morning, as members of the University Council entered to discuss the future of Cambridge’s endowment
    Keira Dignan, a Zero Carbon member who spoke at the rally, said individual people are made to feel responsible for climate change, “because you didn’t turn your lights off or recycle your yoghurt pots properly,” when large corporations refuse to divest – and “100 corporations produce 71% of emissions.” She added that “you would not fight a house fire with a water gun.”…

    Earlier this week Zero Carbon activists spray painted the Old Schools building with slogans such as “Cambridge Divest From Fossil Fuels”, flowers and hearts, amid controversy over the Grade I-listed nature of the building and potential damage to the stone.
    Several members of Zero Carbon have been on hunger strike since Wednesday, with the three first-years vowing to continue until the University divests. Other climate activists have been taking part in a Zero Carbon occupation of Greenwich House, the University’s administrative centre.
    https://www.varsity.co.uk/news/15676

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      ROM

      Those “Rallies” by students always remind me of a WUWT poster’s comment.

      He always went along to those rallies when he was at Uni as he reckoned he always had a damn good chance of meeting some new babes there.

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    pat

    ***unions plural is ETU:

    22 May: RenewEconomy: ***Unions support Liddell’s clean energy transition
    By Giles Parkinson
    The main union representing workers at the doomed and decrepit Liddell power station has welcomed AGL Energy’s plan to transition the asset to a clean energy hub, even as conservative politicians insist on a forced sale of the asset to another buyer.
    “AGL has made the right call in deciding to repurpose the Liddell site for battery storage, pumped hydro storage and gas turbine energy production without abandoning its workers in the process, the Electrical Trades Union of Australia says.
    “AGL Energy is doing the right thing in choosing to transition to the technologies that will be powering Australia through the 21st Century.
    “It appears at this stage that AGL has struck the right balance in securing the future of jobs in the power industry as it goes through the revolution from fossil fuels to renewable energy.”…

    Replacement assets and jobs – from the likes of the 220MW Bungana solar farm, the 212MW Lincoln Gap wind farm, plus storage, and the 150MW solar tower with molten salt storage are under or about to start construction.
    ETU National Secretary Allen Hicks says coal will continue to play a role in Australia’s energy production and the steel industry for some time, “but the evidence is clear” that the jobs are moving into renewables.
    “Unions and the industry want secure jobs for decades to come, but Frydenberg thinks he can bully us into propping up energy technology that is fast becoming obsolete,” Hicks said.
    “AGL is right now showing leadership in how it is embracing industry change without neglecting the livelihoods of workers. Australia’s business leaders should take note.
    “AGL’s current support for a just transition for workers should be the norm, not the exception, in corporate Australia.”
    The focus on a just transition is a critically important one, even if it is mocked by conservative commentators.

    ITK analyst David Leitch also jumps into the Liddell issue on the Energy Insiders podcast, and describes it as nothing but theatre, for and by the absurd.
    You can hear his comments on the matter at the end of the Energy Insiders podcast posted here, which is worth a listen in any case because of the fascinating transition that is being contemplated in WA, where they made the big mistake in reinvesting in an old coal plant.

    As Labor’s Mark Butler pointed out, the reason Liddell was sold to AGL in the first place was because the Liberal NSW Government, supported by the Liberal Federal Government as part of their Asset Recycling program, privatised Liddell…READ ON

    PODCAST 33mins10secs
    https://reneweconomy.com.au/unions-support-liddells-clean-energy-transition-76946/

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    pat

    21 May: CNBC: Energy exports to play ‘massive’ role in any breakthrough in the US-China trade talks
    •Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said there is a “massive opportunity” for U.S. energy exports to China, after the trade partners reached a truce.
    •China has emerged as one of the biggest buyers of U.S. oil since the American government lifted an export ban on the raw material in 2015.
    •The Trump administration has also facilitated increased shipments of U.S. natural gas to China.
    by Tom DiChristopher
    U.S. and Chinese trade negotiators agreed this weekend to put on hold tariffs that they have threatened against one another, after China agreed to purchase more American goods. The concession could move the needle on one of President Donald Trump’s major goals: reducing the U.S. trade deficit with China…

    However, oil and natural gas production is one area of the U.S. economy that is indeed booming. Meanwhile, China, the engine of the global economy, is hungry for more fossil fuels as more drivers take to the nation’s roads and the government seeks to generate more electric power from cleaner-burning natural gas…

    “In energy, I think there’s a massive opportunity for the U.S. to become a major supplier of energy to China,” Mnuchin told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Monday. “They have incredible amounts of demand at these prices for our shale and our liquid natural gas.”
    “I think we can easily get about $40 or $50 billion of energy, and if we can produce and send more with infrastructure, they can even take more,” he said.
    That would be an ambitious target. U.S. oil and gas exports to China were worth $4.3 billion in 2017, according to Reuters…

    The United States is already doing brisk trade with China, which has emerged as one of the largest purchasers of U.S. oil since the Obama administration reached a compromise with Congress to lift a 40-year export ban on raw crude.

    “As the U.S. crude export trade evolves we’re seeing a growing trend of [very large crude carriers] being loaded, so that percentage of total exports is around 40-50 percent around any given month and the vast majority of those are heading to China,” said Matt Smith, director of commodity research at tanker tracking firm ClipperData…

    Oil output from shale fields is soon projected to rise above 7 million barrels a day and has boosted total U.S. production to about 10.7 million barrels a day, according to preliminary government figures. The U.S. Energy Information Administration projects the United States will average 11.9 million barrels a day next year, surpassing No. 1 producer Russia…

    According to Mnuchin, Chinese companies are preparing to enter a binding agreement to purchase LNG from a $43 billion gas project in Alaska. He said that deal could generate about $10 billion a year…
    https://www.cnbc.com/2018/05/21/how-energy-factors-into-the-breakthrough-in-us-china-trade-talks.html

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    pat

    more on EDF reportedly selling 49% of its UK wind farms (comment #16):

    21 May: ElectricityInfo.org: Renewables – wind
    from UK Times: Bidders are being sought for a potential 49 per cent stake in EDF Energy’s UK wind farm business to finance future projects…
    Last year it sold a stake in five onshore wind farms to ***Greencoat UK Wind, an investment fund. EDF’s UK renewables head said that s take sales would “allow us to invest in other UK renewable projects”.
    Wind energy is attractive for ***pension funds and other long-term investors as it provides a relatively stable source of income. A deal would be the largest UK renewables disposal by EDF yet. The energy group declined to comment.

    21 May: RenewablesNow: EDF eyes 49% sale of 550-MW wind portfolio in UK – report
    French energy group EDF is negotiating the partial sale of a 550-MW portfolio of onshore and offshore wind parks in the UK, the Financial Times reports…
    Among the entities seen as potential bidders are investment fund ***Greencoat UK Wind plc and a tie-up including Dalmore Capital, as well as several ***pension funds, the sources in the know have said…
    Last year, EDF sold a 80% stake in five onshore wind farms in the UK totalling 96.4 MW to Greencoat, while earlier this month it bought the up to 450-MW Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind project in Scotland from developer Mainstream Renewable Power.

    ***Greencoat Wind UK:

    11 May: Bloomberg: Strategy That Killed SunEdison Is Now Beating UK Stocks
    By Anna Hirtenstein
    The business model that felled what was once the world’s biggest renewable energy company is alive and making money in Britain.
    Listed funds using the yieldco model are outperforming the FTSE All-Share Index on a risk-adjusted return basis, according to research from Imperial College.
    “Yieldco” had almost become a dirty word after SunEdison Inc.’s bankruptcy in 2016. The strategy involves listing a fund on a stock exchange and using the capital raised to buy operating solar and wind farms. Cash from electricity sales is paid out to shareholders as dividends…

    Both the U.S. and the U.K. “embarked down this ***green infrastructure path at the exact same time with the exact same idea. But here’s the rub, the U.S. blew it,” said Charles Donovan, director for Imperial College’s Center for Climate Finance and Investment. “There has just been too aggressive an approach to structuring in the U.S. and performance has suffered as a result.”

    While SunEdison went on a global spending binge in an attempt to meet its growth targets, London-based peers such as Bluefield Solar Income Fund Ltd. and ***Greencoat U.K. Wind Plc were focusing on paying out dividends while expanding their portfolios at a much slower pace.
    “The U.S. ones were sold with a growth story and in some cases, a very aggressive growth story,” Donovan said. Their counterparts in the U.K. “were sold as dividend stocks.”…
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-11/strategy-that-killed-sunedison-is-now-beating-u-k-stocks

    re the other company mentioned in RenewablesNow article, Dalmore Capital:

    Jan 2018: Dalmore Capital to raise $203m from Korean investors for UK infra fund
    Dalmore Capital Limited plans to raise £150 million ($203 million) from South Korean institutional investors for its £800 million ($1.1 billion) fund…

    reminder:

    4 May: CleanTechnica: EDF Group Acquires Troubled 450 Megawatt Neart na Gaoithe Offshore Wind Farm
    by Joshua S Hill
    Leading independent renewable energy developer Mainstream Renewable Power has this week sold the 450 megawatt (MW) Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind farm, located off the east coast of Scotland, to French electric utility EDF Group… in a deal that is worth around £1.8 billion ($2.44 billion)…
    The project — named ‘Strength of the Wind’ in Gaelic — has an existing 15-year Contract for Difference with the UK Government set at €140 and has grid connection agreements already in place…

    EDF Group’s desire to demonstrate its “strong ambition,” however, comes in a unique package, considering the troubled history the Neart na Gaoithe brings with it. Specifically, the 450 MW offshore wind farm was nearly brought to its knees by, ***believe it or not, a group called The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) Scotland…

    Over more than two years, the Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind farm battled to retain its planning permission and even its government subsidy contract. The project was awarded a Contract for Difference, defined by the UK Government as “a private law contract between a low carbon electricity generator and the Low Carbon Contracts Company (LCCC)” designed to support the development of renewable energy projects. The €140 CfD price, awarded in March of 2015, corresponded to the indexation of the tariff of £114.39 that was set in 2012 prices. However, a year later the contract was severed by the LCCC due to a judicial review requested by RSPB Scotland…ETC
    https://cleantechnica.com/2018/05/04/edf-group-acquires-troubled-450-megawatt-neart-na-gaoithe-offshore-wind-farm/

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      pat

      good time to revisit, only excerpting Greencoat Wind bits:

      Dec 2013: Daily Mail: David Rose: The fatcat ecocrats exposed: Web of ‘green’ politicians, tycoons and power brokers who help each other benefit from billions raised on your bills
      Four of nine-person Climate Change Committee, official watchdog that dictates green energy policy, are, or were until recently, being paid by firms that benefit from committee decisions
      Other industries would stand accused of damning conflicts of interest but when it comes to global warming, anything goes…

      The Mail on Sunday today reveals the extraordinary web of political and financial interests creating dozens of eco-millionaires from green levies on household energy bills.
      A three-month investigation shows that some of the most outspoken campaigners who demand that consumers pay the colossal price of shifting to renewable energy are also getting rich from their efforts.

      Enquiries by this newspaper have revealed:

      £3.8 billion of taxpayers’ money funds the new Green Investment Bank, set up by the Department of Business and Skills. One of its biggest deals involved energy giant SSE selling windfarms to one of the new green funds, Greencoat Wind. The Green Investment Bank’s chairman, Lord Smith of Kelvin, is also chairman of SSE. The bank says it ‘provided expertise’ to enable BIS to take a £50 million stake in Greencoat, which helped fund the SSE sale.
      The same bank’s chief executive, Shaun Kingsbury, is one of the UK’s highest-paid public sector employees. His £325,000 salary is more than twice the Prime Minister’s.
      Firms lobbying for renewables can virtually guarantee access to key Government policy-makers, because they are staffed by former very senior officials – a striking example of Whitehall’s ‘revolving door’…

      Here are some of the key figures among the new breed of fat-cat Ecocrats…ETC

      The £260million green firm milking windfarm subsidies… which you pay for
      Darwall also examined Greencoat Wind, which was floated in February and valued at £260 million.
      It buys windfarms at a premium and milks the subsidies to skim off its profit and pay out dividends – in its case, six per cent.
      A confidential report for investors by Barclays Bank said that by investing in wind energy, Greencoat was taking advantage of ‘the most attractive market fundamentals in Western Europe’ – which meant, said the document: ‘We expect UK power prices to increase progressively.’
      According to Barclays, investors could expect an extremely attractive annual 9.1 per cent rate of return, even after paying all fees.
      This was because ‘half of revenue comes from largely fixed index-linked Government incentives’ – in other words, levies added to bills…

      The report also pointed out that with coal fired power plants being forced to close, ‘supply will fall significantly, but demand won’t .  .  . we see large power price increase as an inevitability’.
      It forecast an increase of roughly 40 per cent by 2017: bad for consumers, but great for Greencoat investors…
      As for Greencoat, among its directors is William Rickett, a former director general at the Department of Energy and Climate Change.

      How half of key Climate Change Committee is in the pay of green business…READ ALL
      http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2523726/Web-green-politicians-tycoons-power-brokers-help-benefit-billions-raised-bills.html

      Greencoat’s Board has changed since Rose wrote the above, but worth checking out the present lot.
      current CEO, Timothy Charles William Ingram (Tim Ingram) has connections to QBE Insurance Group (Australia’s largest global insurer) and ANZ.
      COO, Andrea Finegan has an MBA in Strategic Carbon Management from UEA.

      Bloomberg: Company Overview of Greencoat UK Wind PLC
      https://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=228031162

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    pat

    reply comment in moderation re Greencoat UK Wind:

    read all:

    21 May: CatallaxyFiles: comment by OldOzzie #2717039, posted on May 22, 2018 at 8:37 am
    JUDITH SLOAN: AGL follows the money trail at everyone’s expense
    It’s hardly news that AGL would put its commercial interests before the interests of the nation. And when a company is planning to short the market and drive up prices, why would it accept a bid from a competitor to keep the Liddell plant in operation? It just doesn’t work that way.

    Ignore all that bunkum from AGL about the company’s commitment to combating climate change and its shift from coal to renewables. It’s simply following the money trail, even if there are profoundly anti-competitive aspects to the way the company operates — its ownership of a dominant retail operation, for instance.

    And don’t believe AGL’s estimate of $920 million to keep the Liddell plant going. Most of the board wouldn’t know the difference between a megawatt and a Gucci handbag. They will have been easily swayed by the latter-day Sol Trujillo of Australian business, Andy Vesey, chief executive of AGL.

    Something doesn’t ring true here. Liddell is so valuable that Alinta’s bid of $250m is too low but it’s too expensive to keep going. Politicians and consumers should smell a rat…READ ALL PLUS SOME COMMENTS FROM THE OZ
    http://catallaxyfiles.com/2018/05/21/monday-forum-may-21-2018/comment-page-4/

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      robert rosicka

      We all know what’s going on Pat , they get naff all for coal power but they will be swimming in it with the offset to renewables and a gas peaker , at least they will still be in the mining business though ,subsidy mining that is .

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    pat

    Not so super: how industry funds get away with murder – The Australian
    The Australian – 18 hours ago
    Directors are running industry super funds in contravention of best-practice …. By comparison, they make company directors look like a pack of amateurs when it comes to dodging accountability… Judith Sloan is an economist and company director.

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    Roy Hogue

    Why worry about solar panels when this little gem can apparently power the whole world. It’s Tesla’s dream come true — maybe. Or a joke, care to guess which?

    But wait, even the great Hawking endorsed it so it must be true.

    Honestly, email directing me to this arrived sometime in the evening.

    Seems to me that Nikola Tesla tried this and it failed. Pure BS.

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    ATheoK

    Nitpicking:

    “but we are still subsiding the installation of these unnecessary panels”

    Subsiding is when cave and mine roofs drop, or when city altitudes decline because of water/oil removal or vegetative material decomposes.

    Perhaps the word meant is ‘subsidizing’ or ‘subsidized’?

    Great article!

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  • #
    Bob Sherwood

    First comment I wish to make is on the paucity of good grammar and spelling (or is that grammer and speling?)and not the least the demonising of people who have an alternate view.
    Remember the Corporal Jones epithet – “Don’t panic” folks.
    The charging behaviour of the ‘batteries’ or the ‘super cap’ can be emulated way down at a few micro-farads where any charging current through a connecting wire will produce a voltage differential or gradient end-to-end. When the C first appears to the source it will be an instant void which will then exhibit a exponential charge curve because of the static fundamental elements, vis resistance, inductance and applied heat from the work performed by electrons in this environment. As things settle all of these contra-effects will be ameliorated as the charge curve approaches ‘full’ of the inability to accept any more charge due to internal resistance etc.. A similar set of circumstances will appear on discharge.
    Also, the terms ‘battery’ and ‘cell’ (or capacitor) appear to be being bandied about a bit (lot’s of ‘B’s’ there. A cell is a cell – a battery is a grouping of cells in some configuration or other.
    Lastly, nobody seems interested in discussing the energy budget for the creation of all these wonderful things, be they solar cells, wind generators or even a lemon powered radio receiver.
    If we can get some idea of those parameters we might begin to understand the ‘true’ cost of “renewable” energy sources…and whether they are worth considering.
    Regards

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    Ragnaar

    Home solar is maybe 2 1/2 times as expensive as commercial installations.

    However for blame, it would go to commerical installations. Home solar can only blame itself. It’s a buy in.

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