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Sun Sep 6, 2020, 07:21 PM

Grid Scale Life Cycle Analysis of Greenhouse Gas Implications of "Renewable Energy," and E Storage.

The paper I'll discuss in this post is this one: Grid-Scale Life Cycle Greenhouse Gas Implications of Renewable, Storage, and Carbon Pricing Options (Sarah M. Jordaan, Qingyu Xu, and Benjamin F. Hobbs, Environ. Sci. Technol. 2020, 54, 17, 10435–10445). The authors' institution is Johns Hopkins University.

We are now half a century into the grand experiment in which humanity first cheered for, then funded research on, then spent trillions of dollars on, and then bet the future of the planet on, so called "renewable energy." This was not, of course, the first time that the world had experienced a world built around "renewable energy." In fact, the world had survived upon renewable energy for many thousands of years, but abandoned it beginning in the early 19th century because as the world population grew, the vast majority of people, even more so than today, lived short miserable lives of dire poverty mired in ignorance and peasantry.

The exploitation of dangerous fossil fuels - the waste of which is currently rapidly destroying the planet - led to the creation, in many countries, of an industrial culture that ultimately led to the creation of a middle class, although vast pockets of dire poverty continued and still continue to exist. If you are reading this text on a computer - and it's difficult to imagine there is any other option for you to do so, no one prints the trash I write - you are a participant in that still existing and active industrial culture.

When I was a kid, I hoped to get good enough with German that I could translate Goethe's Faust. I never got there and went on to other things, but thinking about Faust now, it does seem that having been written at the end of the 18th century, Gothe certainly presaged the 19th and 20th centuries.

Du flehst erathmend mich zu schauen,
Meine Stimme zu hören, mein Antlitz zu sehn,
Mich neigt dein mächtig Seelenflehn,
Da bin ich! – Welch erbärmlich Grauen
Faßt Uebermenschen dich! Wo ist der Seele Ruf?
Wo ist die Brust? die eine Welt in sich erschuf,
Und trug und hegte; die mit Freudebeben
Erschwoll, sich uns, den Geistern, gleich zu heben.
Wo bist du, Faust? deß Stimme mir erklang,
Der sich an mich mit allen Kräften drang?


For the last 50 years there has been a broad, and now generally accepted, claim that the industrial culture could be maintained by a reactionary return to so called "renewable energy." So called "renewable energy" of course, never completely disappeared. The most successful form of so called "renewable energy" is of course hydro energy. In the early 19th century, many of the textile plants in say, New England (and elsewhere), as well as grain mills, relied on the use of hydromechanically driven machinery, water wheels, and of course, later on, on an increasingly massive scale, dams to generate electricity, hydroelectricity.

We are fresh out of major rivers to destroy, however, more or less.

The reactionary view that the world should adapt its industrial culture to so called "renewable energy" - which needed to be abandoned to build that culture in the first place - has, for most of its history, had little interest in the displacement of dangerous fossil fuels, but was more interested in preventing the rise of the only more or less infinitely scalable form of energy ever discovered on this planet, nuclear energy.

Over the years, having spent my life trying to understand things on the deepest level my tiny little mind is capable of reaching, I've looked into the origins of the anti-nuclear movement, a movement that is, in my opinion, killing people and killing the world.

In my generation, of course, there was some rationale for the anti-nuclear movement in the times of my childhood, a rationale that was far more emotional than practical. During the 1950's various countries around the world, with the United States and the former Soviet Union being the most egregious participants, engaged in ever more stupidly testosterone driven exercises in open air nuclear testing, culminating in the absurd "Tsar Bomba" nuclear test on the Soviet arctic island of Novaya Zemlya. Many people my age can remember huddling under their desks at school, famously ducking and covering, to survive a nuclear blast. In October of 1962, two testosterone driven world leaders, John F. Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev nearly stumbled into vaporizing their countries.

This actually happened.

Another correspondent wrote about Tsar Bomba a short while ago in this space. It is here: Russia Just Declassified Footage of The Most Powerful Nuclear Bomb Blast in History

Long ago and far away, I also wrote about it as well: Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining, Even Mushroom Clouds: Cs-137 and Watching the Soil Die.

The argument against open air nuclear testing was greatly (and correctly) advanced by noting that such testing widely distributed radioactive materials throughout the atmosphere, where it settled on land and into the sea. Those radioactive materials are still here by the way. The half-life of cesium-137 is 30.167 years. This means that as of this writing, in 2020, about 26.99% of it still remains. In my post of 11 years ago, I noted that this radioactive cesium has value in helping people track the erosion of soils.

I very much recall growing up fearing the element cesium - I was certainly aware of it in elementary school I was probably in my late teens before I realized that there was cesium that was not radioactive.

Welch erbärmlich Grauen Faßt Uebermenschen dich!


What horror grasps you, you superman!


Funny...funny...today, as an old man nearing the end of my life, I'm rather fond of cesium isotopes, thinking they might do great things for the humans that come after me. I wish we had more of the stuff, not less. I think quite a bit about cesium, even more than I did in elementary school, when it terrified me. That's just me though. But yes, I was a child once.

It turns out, as I learned reading an obscure book that was on the shelves of either one of Rutgers University's libraries or Princeton University's libraries that one place the early anti-nuclear power movement got its birth was very near where I grew up cowering in fear of cesium-137, on Long Island.

When I was a boy the power company on Long Island was called LILCO, the Long Island Lighting Company. In the late 1950's LILCO announced plans to build three nuclear power plants, one at Jamesport, on the Eastern North Fork, one at Shoreham, and one in Lloyd's Neck.

The one to which I lived closest was on Lloyd's Neck. In these times, no one would try to build any kind of industrial facility in a place like Lloyd's Neck. It's where wealthy people live, very wealthy people. Although I grew up less than 10 miles away, I never felt like I could even set foot in Lloyd's Neck when I was growing up, although I did once go to a house there. My best friend's girlfriend's Mom was a maid in one of them, and one time when she was sick, her daughter, my friend's girlfriend, asked my friend and I to drive her up to the house so she could clean the house so her mother wouldn't get fired. The owners went away, and we all went in to clean the house. It had an indoor swimming pool. "Wow!" We said. "Wow!" Before then, we didn't know that people could afford something like that.

Rich people don't like industrial facilities in their neighborhood. They bring traffic, and roads and pollution, and well, poor people who aren't maids. The people living in Lloyd's Neck had lots of resources, and pointed out that there was something called "nuclear waste" and it contained exactly the same kind of stuff that came out of Tsar Bomba, the American "Big Mike" and Bravo and oodles of other nuclear bombs. It was unsafe, they said.

So LILCO, understanding that rich people are essential for all life on Earth, cancelled the Lloyd's Neck plans pretty damn quick, but built Shoreham, which built on the momentum of fear of nuclear materials established by the good folks in Lloyd's Neck, but built Shoreham, which generated lots of "exposes" by Newsday, so that Jamesport was cancelled and Shoreham, although completed and having undergone preliminary critcality testing, never operated, was sold to New York State for one dollar, which shut the plant permanently. LILCO went bankrupt.

Let me tell you something: People died because Shoreham didn't operate. They died from air pollution, dangerous fossil fuel waste that actually has a long history of killing people.

As a young man, I was among those who demonstrated against Shoreham. History will not forgive me, nor should it.

So we bet the planet on the reactionary vision that our industrial culture could survive on so called "renewable energy." Of course it hasn't done so, and it isn't doing so, but we still hear any that word quite a bit about what so called "renewable energy" could do. It's 2020. I've been personally hearing - and for a long time believing - that so called "renewable energy" could power the world.

My whole life...my whole life...

I am personally running out of time, and all those prayers in which I used to believe, prayers about the coming renewable energy nirvana will be "lost, in time."

They weren't honest prayers in any case, reactionary as they were, inasmuch as they were completely uninformed prayers, more mysticism than fact.

Since we have bet the planetary atmosphere on so called renewable energy, one would think that we really, really, have thought the whole thing through on a grand scale.

If one spends a lot of time poring through the scientific literature - something I routinely have been doing for decades - one can come across thousands upon thousands of papers in various journals all about so called "renewable energy." I've read through a significant number of them over the years, certainly, at various levels of depth, thousands of them. Almost uniformly the opening sections of these scientific papers speak - it's a cultural imperative almost everywhere on the planet - in praise of so called "renewable energy." Increasingly one sees here and there, a few examples of dissidence with respect to the decided point that vast amounts of money and effort should be thrown at "renewable energy," - I am less alone in this than I used to be - but overall the papers speak in positive terms. One hears the same stuff that one hears in the general public, how the price of so called "renewable energy" is falling so that it now "cheap," how the use of so called "renewable energy" represents a strategy for addressing the climate crisis caused by dangerous fossil fuel waste, how so called "renewable energy" is sustainable, and of course, how fast so called "renewable energy" is growing. Although these claims widely published in magical "peer reviewed" papers - "peer review" is allegedly magical and somehow not subject to the flaws and frailty of humanity, cultural and otherwise - I contend that all of these statements are either disingenuous, counterfactual, dishonest, or in some cases, outright delusional.


Anyway, you would think, having bet the future of the planetary atmosphere on a reactionary return to the use of so called "renewable energy" to support all of humanity's needs, that the effects on scale , a grand scale that the whole thing had been well thought through, even though the decision to abandon renewable energy and replace it first with dangerous coal, then with dangerous coal and dangerous petroleum, and finally with coal, petroleum and (most recently) dangerous natural gas was never thought through, was it?

According to the authors of this paper, however, even on the scale of large electric grids, the situation was not well thought through.

They write:

Climate change is among the most pressing challenges for the electric sector, due to the prominence of fossil fuels in the present generation fleet. While the U.S. power sector has experienced substantial emissions reductions in recent years, fossil fuels were still the dominant source of electricity at 63.5% of generation in 2018, with 35.1% of generation fueled by natural gas and 27.4% fueled by coal.(1) The grid has been changing not only from coal to gas but also with a growing portion of intermittent renewables: wind and solar PV have grown from 55000 to 272000 Gigawatt-hours per year (GWh/year) and 76 to 60000 GWh/year, respectively, from 2008 to 2018.(2) Provided that the costs of renewable technologies continue to fall, energy storage is broadly considered one of the most attractive solutions with notable potential to balance the intermittency of variable renewable power (namely, wind and solar). The true environmental benefits of new storage capacity are challenging to discern due to the overall dynamic interactions between power plants and storage inherent to the operations of an electric grid, particularly in comparison to policy options such as carbon pricing. But generation is only one part of the life cycle of power systems: the life cycle includes additional processes, such as materials extraction to construct power plants, upstream fuel extraction (where applicable), operations, and transmission of the electricity to consumers. Our analysis addresses these challenges with an examination of grid-scale greenhouse gas emissions through an integrated analysis of optimized technology-policy scenarios that captures the full supply chain implications.

Life cycle assessment (LCA) provides a robust method for examining these upstream and downstream emissions as a cradle-to-grave approach to quantifying the environmental burdens of products or processes from materials extraction to waste disposal (cradle to grave).(3,4) Present emissions models, however, are limited in their capability to estimate life cycle emissions changes at subnational scales and hourly time steps.(5,6) When quantifying the life cycle emissions of an electricity grid, national assumptions about the generation mixes are typically applied, neglecting to account for the regionalized differences and temporal dynamics implicit to power systems that can result in variable emissions results.(7) Similar challenges have been noted for other air pollutants(8,9) and water consumption.(10−13) Data that characterize dynamic grid interactions can result in more realistic life cycle emissions and nuanced understanding of their spatial and temporal distributions, but that requires that LCAs leverage information at more refined spatiotemporal resolutions.(14−16)

To the authors’ knowledge, there has yet to be a comprehensive evaluation of the life cycle emissions associated with different configurations of renewable capacity additions, storage capacity additions, and carbon pricing options at the scale of grids (i.e., rather than individual technologies). In order to perform such an evaluation, robust methods must model the life cycle environmental and economic impacts of such changes at the grid-scale. A review of models that estimate the emissions of grid operations uncovers two approaches: (1) use of historical data or (2) use of power systems and market models based on optimization methods.(6) In this paper, the latter approach is taken because a focus will be on the synergistic impact of low-carbon technologies (i.e., storage and renewables) and market mechanisms (in this case, carbon prices) for which there is a lack of relevant historical data.


I have added the bold. As for their disclaimer, "To the authors' knowledge..." it is in accordance with my own view, but it seems to me that there is real evidence for the claim that there has yet to be a "comprehensive evaluation," inasmuch the oft repeated disingenuous statement that "renewable energy is cheaper than coal..." (...or gas, or oil, or nuclear...) doesn't ever refer to when it is cheaper and what the value of energy might actually be on those occasions that it is cheaper.

At midnight a solar cells is of course a stranded asset with zero value. One should however also ask - and few people ever do - whether a solar cell has any value when it producing near peak energy if and when - this actually happens - the price of wholesale electricity is zero or less than zero, the low prices realized because electricity being produced copiously by so called "renewable energy" at a time when no one actually needs it. Consideration of this question might go a long way to explaining why the highest consumer electricity prices in the OECD are found in Denmark and Germany.

To offer a word on the "growth" of wind and solar power as described in the text, which happily is not, described - as it so often is on "green energy" websites hyping these forms of energy - as "spectacular, usually along with rather innumerate "percent talk," let me repeat the operative phrase above:

The grid has been changing not only from coal to gas but also with a growing portion of intermittent renewables: wind and solar PV have grown from 55000 to 272000 Gigawatt-hours per year (GWh/year) and 76 to 60000 GWh/year, respectively, from 2008 to 2018.


In "percent talk" this can, again, disingenuously, made to sound spectacular. Being familiar with this type of misleading rhetoric, here's how this horseshit would likely sound: Solar Energy production from 2008 to 2018 grew by almost 79,000%!!!! Wind energy production grew by almost 500%!!!!

A GigaWatt-hour (GWh) is a unit of energy, not a unit of power that is so often used to justify the disaster that so called "renewable energy" represents, by pretending that peak power is the equivalent of average continuous power. One GWh is equal (exactly) to 3.6 trillion joules. It follows that 272,000 GWh is the equivalent of 979 petaJoules, or 0.979 exaJoules. Similarly, 60,000 GWh is the equivalent of 217 petaJoules or 0.217 petaJoules. Given the number of seconds in a sideral year, 31,557,600 seconds, this translates to an average continuous power of 31,300 MW for wind, and 6,900 MW for solar. Overall, this is the equivalent of about 37 average size power plants capable of operating continuously, for example, nuclear plants.

This sounds great, until one recognizes that neither solar nor wind actually produce continuous power, nor is the power they produce actually even produced in any kind of synchronization with demand. Their production is, in fact, subject to the vicissitudes of weather. This means in theory, one needs 31,300 MW of redundant power capacity to back up wind, and 6.9 MW of redundant power capacity to back up solar. If that capacity does not exist, then the system crashes and there is not enough power to serve all customers; a situation recently observed in portions of the very grid that the paper discusses.
Recently. Very recently. During a heat wave. A heat wave that almost certainly took place because climate change has not being addressed and isn't being addressed.

Yeah...yeah...yeah...I know...batteries, batteries, batteries…batteries will save the world, in the same way so called “renewable energy” saved the world, which – looking at CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere as of yesterday, it didn’t.
Most renewable energy advocates turn into that appalling and dangerous idiot Ayn Rand when the cost of nuclear power plants are discussed. Thankfully that idiotic old biddy Ayn Rand kicked off, although many of the poor thinkers who embraced her cartoonish view of the world are regrettably still with us, acting, in fact, on her stupidity and venality, the view that selfishness can be ethically excused among the social animals that human beings represent. Ayn Rand is dead, but her conceits are still killing people. So, I claim, will the conceits about batteries, a subject the authors' discuss in the paper under discussion.

By contrast, if we were less Randian, and thus bothered to care for future generations, and thus spent money to build infrastructure that would serve future generations rather than our own – in other words did something for which there was little in it for us but lots in it for humanity – we would build nuclear plants. The primitive technology of the 1950’s, constructed using primitive computational devices, built nuclear reactors that demonstrably worked for better than half a century; it is now understood that we can design and build them to last decades longer.

I say this a lot: A nuclear power plant is a gift from one generation to another. My father’s generation built the Oyster Creek nuclear power plant, and for nearly twenty years of my life, it kept the lights on where I live in New Jersey without causing a single loss of life.

There is no record of batteries lasting half a century; even the most advanced are converted into electronic waste in ten to twenty years. This means that infants born today will, as young adults, assume responsibility for disposing of this stuff; and no, there is no real infrastructure or technology for cheaply and easily doing even that, despite all the glib hand waving rhetoric one sees and hears.
Anyway, the authors discuss a large area that has significant so called “renewable energy” infrastructure, and little nuclear structure. As is the case with all “renewable energy” paradises, the largest single portion of energy is comprised of dangerous fossil fuels: In this grid dangerous natural gas comprise 40.5% of the capacity, “only” according to the authors “40.5%.” This is slightly more than the largest form of so called “renewable energy,” hydroelectric dams, and includes those that represent an assault on, for just one example, salmon, as well as that which converted the Colorado River Delta ecosystem into a desert, where, as of this writing September 6, 2020, according to the forecasted temperature in Yuma Arizona is expected to peak at 47oC (114 oF).

We are, I think, more or less out of additional major rivers to destroy.

Peak electricity demand generally takes place in the late afternoon, early evening. In a post here that was essentially pure data with very brief commentary, I showed the hour highest power peak demands in California in July of 2019:

Hours of the Top 50 CAISO Electricity Loads in California, July 2019.

Here is the salient part of the commentary minus the sarcasm:

The first column is the power demand; the second is the ranking of the demand, and the last is the hour of the demand (on a 24 hour clock.)

It seems the top ten all took place in the early evening hours, while among the top 20, 6 occurred in the late afternoon, with the other 14 being in the early evening.


Here is real time data collected from the CAISO site at around 6:10 pm EST, 3:10 PST September 6, 2020 on California's Energy demand live and projected for the day, and supply both current and throughout the period beginning at noon on this date:






(Because of an error in preparing the graphics file for this post, the line supply graphic immediatly above was recorded at 4:00 pm PST, 7:00 EST.)

This data can be accessed (in real time) here: CAISO Today's Outlook

It appears the wind isn't blowing all that strongly today, but there's plenty of sunshine. There are people however, that as the day proceeds, and the power requirements climb to a significant portion of total system capacity, the sun will, um, go down. I tend to believe these people, owing to the experience of having lived in California. In fact, this seems to take place everywhere, earlier in the winter than in summer.

All of this is relevant since the authors are writing about a grid that includes California. They write:

The study area is the Western Interconnection comprising the western geographic area of North America, where the grid is synchronously operated (Figure 1).(39) Of the United States, all of Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington are part of this interconnection in addition to parts of Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, South Dakota, Texas, and Wyoming. Parts of Northern Mexico are included in addition to the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and Alberta. While coal and natural gas remain strong contributors to the region’s power supply, they combined represent only 40.5% of the 249 GW of the region’s generating capacity.(40) Of the total capacity, hydroelectric power ranks first at 38.2%, followed by natural gas (27.4%), coal (13.3%), nuclear (8.5%), wind (6.6%), solar (3.1%), geothermal (1.9%), and other sources (1.2%). The Western Interconnection was selected as the study region due to its importance to Western North America: it serves 80 million people and spans more than 1.8 million square miles.(41) Further, a series of recent efforts have resulted in vetted optimization scenarios that examine the influence of different renewable-storage-policy configurations with the JHSMINE model, created in collaboration with the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC).


Figure 1:



The caption:

Figure 1. Map of JHSMINE reduced 300-bus network of Western Electricity Coordinating Council of North America. Dots represent nodes of the grid, and triangles represent the location where new renewable generation can be sited. Red/Orange lines are existing AC/DC lines, and blue lines are equivalent lines that are results of the network reduction.


(The blue lines are apparently computational artifacts to reduce computational complexity and thus computer time, thus they are virtual power lines, nor real power lines.)

This next graphic is very important I think, since it delineates the system boundaries for the calculations.



The caption:

Figure 2. Simplified scope of the grid-scale LCA, with systems boundaries for each technology based on NREL’s harmonization studies.(17,46−51) Life cycle emissions are estimated using NREL harmonization data for each type of generation modeled in JHSMINE, adjusted for each power plant’s operational efficiency using their heat rates. Results from the JHSMINE model determine the optimized interactions between energy types and storage on the grid, under 21 scenarios of renewable energy, storage, and carbon pricing options. Our analysis and discussion focus primarily on upstream emissions as NREL’s harmonization studies found that emissions impacts are weighted toward the upstream.


Some commentary: The cost of "turbine manufacture" should not exclude mining - although it is not clear whether or not it is included in manufacturing costs. A major component of a wind turbine system is steel, and the manufacture of steel in turn, depends very much on mining both iron ore and more importantly coal. The amount of steel required to construct, and for that matter to replace wind infrastructure depends sensitively on the lifetime of these devices. Data from the comprehensive master register of wind turbines maintained by the Danish Energy Agency, which I have analyzed elsewhere multiple times suggests that the average lifetime of a wind turbine is slightly less than 18 years. In addition, it must be clearly stated that the environmental impact carbon and otherwise of magnets is something of a black box, since almost all of the neodymium and dysprosium in the world is mined in China and it is well known that besides extraction from the minerals, solvent extraction techniques for lanthanide separations are dependent on dangerous fossil fuel based solvents.

Secondly, uranium mining is still required to run the existing nuclear infrastructure, although the disassembly of Soviet and American nuclear weapons negotiated by Al Gore in the 1990's did lead to a temporary decline in this requirement, regrettably not including plutonium. However, the most recently approved nuclear reactor in the United States, the Nuscale reactor, I believe is a "breed and burn" reactor of a type that, with wise use of plutonium, suggests that a need for uranium mining can (and should) be eliminated for centuries, since the uranium (and thorium) already mined is sufficient to supply all human energy needs for centuries without the use of a single piece of coal, a single kg of natural gas, a single liter of oil. There is no effort to exploit this possibility, nonetheless it is real.

The next graphic points out, very clearly, the carbon cost of nuclear energy, as well as various other schemes for producing energy, and importantly for storing energy by various technologies:



The caption:

Figure 3. (a, b) Life cycle results for individual technologies compared to grid-scale scenarios. Individual technologies for comparison include coal, petroleum, natural gas combustion turbine (GasCT), combined cycle natural gas (CCGT), concentrating solar power (SolarThermal), solar photovoltaic (solarPV), wind and geothermal (Geo). Scenarios include different configurations of storage additions (Pumped Hydro (PH), Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES), and Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS)), new wind capacity, and different prices on carbon dioxide (none, $20/tCO2, $58/tCO2, $100/tCO2) (see Table 1). Part a compares the grid-scale LCA results to life cycle results for individual technologies. Part b shows more clearly the results for the grid-scale scenarios. Note that these results are based on the aggregate power plants using annual estimates.


Note that this graphic, consistent with many other papers written on this topic clearly shows that in terms of carbon cost, nuclear power is lower than solar PV, lower than solar thermal, lower than geothermal, and comparable with wind power when the wind is blowing. No matter what technology is utilized to store wind (or solar) energy, the carbon cost is significantly worse than nuclear power.

The big, big, big, big, big difference between nuclear and solar and wind, however is that nuclear energy is reliable. Above I noted that to cover the average continuous power of solar and wind energy on the grid described herein, in fact, 62 MW of power at a mininum.

An typical nuclear power plant most common in the US operates at about 33% thermal efficiency, producing about 3000 MW thermal, 1000 MWe. This means to displace 31,000 MW of so called "renewable energy" and the 31,000 MW of redundant power infrastructure (in reality, if not in fantasy, gas power) 31 nuclear plants of the type built in the 1970's using 1950's and 1960's technology would be required. Much of the thermal energy of nuclear fission is thus wasted. I have personally spent years convincing myself that the thermal efficiency of nuclear power plants could be more than doubled via strategies that take some of the techniques used by the dangerous natural gas industry, with respect to combined cycle performance, and that nuclear heat can be utilized to generate electricity when needed and to perform other tasks, including but hardly limited to making fuels and remediating the environmental disaster we have left for all future generations in absolute contempt for them.

I've discussed all of that, and will discuss more of that, elsewhere.

To close out the discussion of the paper, here's a little bit about the carbon cost of these grids, coupled to time, similar to the real time California data shown above:



The caption:

Figure 4. (a–d) Mean life cycle grid emissions for each scenario, estimated at hourly time steps for each of the four representative days modeled in JHSMINE.


At no point, do any of these "renewable energy/storage/carbon tax" scenarios produce electricity as cleanly as nuclear power does, as shown in figure 3 above.

If we gave a rat's ass about the future - clearly we don't - we'd cut the crap and face reality - but I doubt we will.

I hope you are enjoying the Labor Day holiday should you be fortunate enough to not be working during it. I would implore you to not behave as if the Covid crisis is over - it isn't - and thus to maintain all safety procedures consistent with your health and the health of others. Have a safe evening and a safe holiday!


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Arrow 6 replies Author Time Post
Reply Grid Scale Life Cycle Analysis of Greenhouse Gas Implications of "Renewable Energy," and E Storage. (Original post)
NNadir Sep 6 OP
jpak Sep 6 #1
mahatmakanejeeves Sep 6 #2
NNadir Sep 6 #3
mahatmakanejeeves Sep 6 #4
NNadir Sep 6 #5
NNadir Sep 6 #6

Response to NNadir (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2020, 07:30 PM

1. LOL!!122

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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2020, 07:51 PM

2. TL; DR, but the Cuban missile crisis happened in October 1962. NT

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Reply #2)

Sun Sep 6, 2020, 07:58 PM

3. Thanks. You're right. I corrected it. It happens I was alive then.

It was impressive enough on me as a child, that decades later, I vividly recall that one of the "smart kids" at the Bus Stop confidently told us that there was no way the Russians were going to turn those boats around, and thus there was no way there wouldn't be a war in the afternoon.

My mother was stockpiling diet drinks in the basement, because, the advertisements said that they provided "complete nutrition." I suppose we were supposed to emerge from the basement in good health because of our good nutrition.

Frankly, as a child, her claims made me feel better. I was scared shitless.

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Response to NNadir (Reply #3)

Sun Sep 6, 2020, 08:12 PM

4. Me too. Seventh grade.

Do you see that long yellow line extending non-stop from the Columbia River to Los Angeles? That's the Pacific Direct Current Intertie.

Pacific DC Intertie



Map of the route of the Pacific Intertie transmission route and stations

The Pacific DC Intertie (also called Path 65) is an electric power transmission line that transmits electricity from the Pacific Northwest to the Los Angeles area using high voltage direct current (HVDC). The line capacity is 3,100 megawatts, which is enough to serve two to three million Los Angeles households and represents almost half of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) electrical system's peak capacity.

The intertie originates near the Columbia River at the Celilo Converter Station of Bonneville Power Administration's grid outside The Dalles, Oregon and is connected to the Sylmar Converter Station north of Los Angeles, which is owned by five utility companies and managed by LADWP. The Intertie can transmit power in either direction, but power flows mostly from north to south.

The section of the line in Oregon is owned and operated by Bonneville Power Administration, while the line in Nevada and California is owned and operated by Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.[2]

The transition is at the Oregon-Nevada border, at 41°59′47″N 119°57′44″W.

This is one of two HVDC lines serving Los Angeles; the other is Path 27.

{snip}

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Reply #4)

Sun Sep 6, 2020, 08:28 PM

5. I have a full, wall size map, of all the power lines in the US dating from 2005.

It was a gift to me from people who appreciated my writings (then on Daily Kos) and worked in the power industry. (I'd decided to head down to Washington D.C. to meet these people after one of them reached out to me.) They had a new one, so said I could have the old one.

They also gave me a nice tee shirt - which I've lost I think - and some trade show trinkets that I don't exactly remember. Fun was had by all.

The map kind of a neat gift. I still have it, rolled up in a closet somewhere, but it's way too big for any wall in my home, and anyway, who wants to look at the national power grid?

Funny story: I gave it to my son, then in second grade, to bring to school for "show and tell." I drove him in with it, and left a note for the teacher that I'd pick it and him up.

(That boy is going to graduate from engineering school this December; he's way smarter than his father.)

When I came to pick him up, the teacher told me that while she appreciated it, and all the kids loved it and had a great discussion of it beginning with the stuff I taught him, she was concerned that "terrorists" could get it.

That decade everything was about "terrorists."

They could get that map, those terrorists, I said, by ordering it and paying by check or money order about $100 bucks, if I recall what the price was.

I never heard that terrorists bought the map, but who knows? Maybe they did.

I'm sorry, by the way, that the opening post was "too long" for you, but to be perfectly honest, I don't write these posts expecting many people to actually read them. They just help me clarify things in my head, and if someone wants to spend the time, I'm OK with it, but I hardly expect it.

Most people are disinterested in how the energy system works, except as it may involve "terrorists."

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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Sun Sep 6, 2020, 10:26 PM

6. 7 pm PST 9/06/20 CAISO California Power Source Load: Looks Like The Sun Is Going Down.

One wonders what, exactly, they'd be doing right now without natural gas.











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