Saturday, February 11, 2017

GWPF Newsletter: Rolling Blackouts In South Australia As Wind Farms Fail Again








Coldest Winter In Decade Causes Energy Shortages Across Southeast Europe

In this newsletter:

1) Rolling Blackouts In South Australia As Wind Farms Fail Again
Herald Sun, 8 February 2017
 
2) Oh Dear: Aussie Energy Regulator Says Wind Farm Changes Mean South Australian Blackout Won’t Be Repeated
RE New Economy, 6 February 2017
 
3) South Australian Power Woes To Spread Nation-Wide, Australian Energy Council Warns
ABC News, 9 February 2017
 
4) In The Doldrums: German Coal, Gas Plant Output At 5-Year High
Platts, 3 February 2017
 
5) Energy At A Crossroads: Fossil Fuels Renewed
The Australian, 3 February 2017
 
6) Coldest Winter In Decade Causes Energy Shortages Across Southeast Europe
Bloomberg, 9 February 2017
 
7) And Finally: Germany To Open Yet Another New Coal Power Plant
Reuters, 19 January 2017

Full details:

1) Rolling Blackouts In South Australia As Wind Farms Fail Again
Herald Sun, 8 February 2017
Andrew Bolt

South Australia’s wind farms fail again, grinding out just 2 per cent power when the wind’s die in a heatwave. Result: blackouts to 40,000 homes as the temperature soars above 40 degrees. And lives put in danger by this green madness.

 
Image result for GWPF South Australia blackouts

Widespread power blackouts were imposed across Adelaide and parts of South Australia with heatwave conditions forcing authorities to impose load shedding.

About 40,000 properties were without electricity supplies for about 30 minutes because of what SA Power Networks said was a direction by the Australian Energy Market Regulator.

The temperature was still above 40C when the rolling blackouts began at 6.30pm to conserve supplies as residents sought relief with air conditioners…

SA Power Networks said in a tweet tonight: “AEMO has instructed us to commence 100MW rotational #load shedding via Govt agreed list due to lack of available generation supply in SA.’’

 

The SA Power Network outages map at 7.23pm.

The interconnector bringing most coal-fired backup from Victoria was working flat-out at the time. South Australia simply did not have enough electricity generation of its own.

Once again it is important to recognise five things.

1. South Australia has the country’s most expensive and yet most unreliable electricity because it has scrapped its coal-fired power and relies instead on wind power for 40 per cent of its electricity.

2. Expensive and unreliable power costs South Australia jobs, and risks lives as the poor and old cannot afford – or get – cooling in a heat wave or warmth in a cold snap.

3. South Australia cannot rely for long on backup from Victoria, which has its own renewable energy targets that have already helped to force the announced closure of the giant Hazelwood coal-fired generator, responsible for up to 20 per cent of Victoria’s power.

4. What we’re seeing in South Australia will spread to the whole country if Labor is elected federally and imposes its own renewable target of 50 per cent by 2030. This will force us to use triple the wind, solar and hydro power we do now (but without adding any more dams) at an estimated cost of $48 billion. Our electricity will become as unreliable as that of a Third World state. Or South Australia. Same difference.

5. And none of this pain – the expense, the lost jobs, the risk to health – will make the slightest measurable difference to global warming. The whole point of switching to green power is to cut the emissions that is blamed for causing the world to warm. But the cuts we make in Australia by building wind farms are too tiny to make any difference that any scientist can measure. It is all pain, no gain.

Madness. This global warming policy is a deliberate policy to make us poor.

see also: Jo Nova: Rolling blackouts ordered in SA in 40C heat


2) Oh Dear: Aussie Energy Regulator Says Wind Farm Changes Mean South Australian Blackout Won’t Be Repeated
RE New Economy, 6 February 2017
Giles Parkinson

The Australian Energy Market Operator says it is confident that adjustments made to wind farm software means there is no risk of the South Australia blackout being repeated in the future.

AEMO chairman Tony Marxsen told more than 100 energy experts at a presentation under the auspices of the Electrical Energy Society of Australia last week that the “system black” event in South Australia in September – which has set off a huge debate about renewable energy across the country – would not be repeated.

Full story

3) South Australian Power Woes To Spread Nation-Wide, Australian Energy Council Warns
ABC News, 9 February 2017
Claire Campbell

The Federal Government needs to take urgent action to improve its energy policies before the rest of Australia falls victim to the type of large-scale blackouts experienced in South Australia, the Australian Energy Council has warned.

About 90,000 South Australian homes and businesses were blacked out Wednesday when the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) issued a load-shedding order to avoid potential damage to the network equipment due to supply deficiency.

It asked for more power generators to be switched on but did not receive "sufficient bids" and said it did not have enough time to turn on the second unit at Pelican Point.

AEC chief executive officer Matthew Warren said there was no shortage of electrons and available power, but it was not dispatched when required.

He said the entire nation's system needed upgrading quickly because energy reliability was not just a state issue.

"We're seeing generators leave the market and we are not replacing them," Mr Warren said.

"If you keep doing that, you will have more blackouts."

Mr Warren said South Australia was the first to experience this "but Victoria is next".

Full story

4) In The Doldrums: German Coal, Gas Plant Output At 5-Year High
Platts, 3 February 2017

German coal and gas-fired power plant output in January rose to its highest in almost five years as cold weather boosted demand while below average wind and record-low winter nuclear availability reduced supply, according to power generation data compiled by think-tank Fraunhofer ISE.

Full post

5) Energy At A Crossroads: Fossil Fuels Renewed
The Australian, 3 February 2017
Graham Lloyd

Everything, it seems, is now up for grabs in this year’s review of climate and energy policy.

As air pollution rules were tightened across the US under Barack Obama, “rolling coal” became a popular pastime for many of the disaffected. Enthusiasts modified their diesel engines to emit as much black smoke as possible on demand, sometimes for the cameras and into the faces of a passing cyclist or Prius driver.

Fast forward and electric cars are still hot with the hipsters but the Prius is passe, Donald Trump is in the White House and pick-up trucks are the biggest selling cars in the US, thanks to a world awash with cheap oil.

For critics, Malcolm Turnbull is now “rolling coal”, blowing black smoke to the urban elites, Labor and the Greens, criticising a “mindless rush to renewables” that raises prices for ordinary people and can push whole states into darkness.

Having “drawn the battle lines” in an address to the National Press Club, the Prime Minister has set a key plank of the political contest for the year.

It represents a reality check on action on climate change, a pitch to jobs and security but with just enough support for battery storage and new technology developments to avoid his being cast a Luddite.

In doing so, the federal government is facing the post-Trump reality and showing the Coalition has been paying attention to lessons that have bedevilled energy policy renewal at home and abroad. [...]

But Germany is still building new-generation, coal-fired electricity plants to help replace the production lost from turning its back on domestic nuclear.

Against a backdrop of supply concerns and high state-based ­renewable energy targets, the Turnbull government is arguing Australia should follow suit and showcase the latest in high-­efficiency coal technology.

For new generation coal plants to work, proponents would need a guarantee of access, possibly in the form of renewable energy certificates or “capacity payments” as has happened in Britain and elsewhere in Europe.

Everything, it seems, is now up for grabs in this year’s review of climate and energy policy....

To appreciate how quickly and fundamentally things are changing, it is necessary to go no further than a one-hour press briefing held jointly this week by the ­Global Warming Policy Foundation and Foreign Press Association in London.

The briefing was attended by reporters from the major British newspapers including The Times, The Financial Times, The Guardian and the world’s leading wire agencies and special-interest energy publications.

They were there to hear comments from Myron Ebell, who served as head of the US Environmental Protection Agency’s transition team from early September until January 19, when he helped to draft an advisory action plan on how to implement Trump’s campaign promises.

Rising from a sea of incredulity was a question from one journalist present that underscored just how things had changed.

“Me and my colleagues in this room haven’t spent much time speaking to people like yourselves and the Global Warming Policy Foundation over recent times because nothing you have to say has any support in fact,” the journalist said.

“There are a lot of politicians and policymakers who have determined what you have to offer is essentially meaningless in terms of where the planet should be going, where the economy should be going and business should be going, but yet here we are all sitting in a room listening to you again. Why do you think that is?” he asked.

Ebell said: “Well, elections are surprising things sometimes.”

Ebell’s analysis is as relevant for Brexit as the US presidential race and provides some clues as to how debate is being fundamentally recast in other democracies, including Australia.

Trump was elected President, Ebell says, largely because he figured out and supported policies that were popular in the heartland of the US, that are not those of the bicoastal elite.

Energy policy is central to the divide.

Full story

6) Coldest Winter In Decade Causes Energy Shortages Across Southeast Europe
Bloomberg, 9 February 2017

As freezing weather triggered energy shortages across southeast Europe at the start of the year, Bulgaria’s refusal to export power was typical in a region where everyone had to fend for themselves.

Nations from Greece to Hungary hoarded power last month in response to the coldest winter in a decade, exposing the weakness of the region’s power markets, which should enjoy unrestricted flows. Temperatures in the Balkans and surrounding countries are expected to drop below freezing again next week.


The reaction highlights the European Union’s struggle to break down national barriers for power and gas, integrate markets and bolster energy security as it tries to ease dependence on Russian fuel. While many southeast European countries are in the EU, they have been slow to modernize plants and cables in a region where assets per person for production and infrastructure are about a third of that in advanced Europe, according to the International Monetary Fund.

“What I see in the Balkans is clear evidence that everybody first secures its own consumption and only then, if they’re in a position to do so, they’ll help the others,’’ said Andras Totth, the deputy chief executive officer of strategy at Hungarian state-controlled utility MVM.

January’s cold snap crippled supplies in a region dominated by coal-fired generation and hydropower, cutting electricity to tens of thousands of homes and sending energy prices to record levels. Greece cut power exports for two days, while Romania restricted flows as rivers froze and one of its nuclear reactors was forced to halt after a blizzard damaged the high-voltage line connecting it to the grid.

Full story 

7) And Finally: Germany To Open Yet Another New Coal Power Plant
Reuters, 19 January 2017 

The German Muenster district court on Thursday granted an emission-control permit to Datteln 4, a hard-coal fired power station under construction by utility Uniper that has been held up by an intense legal battle with environmentalists.

Uniper said it aims to begin supplying electricity and district heating from the 1,050 megawatts plant in western Germany in the first half of 2018.

 Image result for Datteln 4 Kohlekraftwerk

Full post

see also:  Fritz Vahrenholt: Germany’s Energiewende — A Disaster In The Making
The London-based Global Warming Policy Forum is a world leading think tank on global warming policy issues. The GWPF newsletter is prepared by Director Dr Benny Peiser - for more information, please visit the website at www.thegwpf.com.

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