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climate change

Cure Net Zero with Demand Response

By Energy Rant No Comments
I lambasted net zero many times, one time calling it an unserious weapon against climate change. Why is that? We’re going to see in this post. What is net zero? Simply, it is a building or property that produces as much renewable energy on-site as it consumes, typically over a year. Some utilities claim their net zero trophies for producing as much renewable energy as their customers buy. Why is Net Zero a Con? To answer this question in one word; exports. When a property or utility generates more electricity than it consumes, it must be exported to someone else....
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COP27, Elites, and Engineers

By Energy Rant No Comments
I have run enough marathons to have lost count, most of them in the last ten years, with the total approaching 20. Why would you do that, Jeff? I like the grind, double, especially when I can run negative splits and pass people the entire race rather than being passed the whole race. I’ve done both about equally. I guessed that winning marathon times had not changed much in forty years. Wikipedia confirms this with finishing times at the NYC marathon. Americans Bill Rogers and Alberto Salazar finished with the same times back in the 1970s and early 1980s as...
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Safe Nuclear Power v Chernobyl

By Energy Rant No Comments
Green and climate change warriors – see how important nuclear power is to CO2 emissions in one chart, courtesy of the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO). The closure of two nuclear plants wiped out more than twice the carbon-free electricity generated by all renewables in the state. Why is nuclear power overlooked or not an option? I can think of three reasons: 1) it’s scary, and people don’t understand it; 2) it’s too expensive; 3) radioactive waste. Accidents and Disasters Reason #1, it’s scary, is due to prejudice and ignorance. There has only been one nuclear power plant disaster...
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Rant Revelations Unleashed

By Energy Rant No Comments
This week in concert with critical thought prompted by the EPRI electrification conference, I introduce Rant Revelations. Some are not new, but it is time to start a list. Profit Rules Decarbonization can only happen if it is profitable. That is how we decarbonized to current levels. Whether it’s production tax credits for wind energy that make coal not competitive or high natural gas prices that make coal competitive, profit wins. In time the piper will be paid as intermittent and subsidized renewable energy will run out its string of lowering energy prices requiring new thermal generation to avoid grid...
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The Power Grid’s Glide Path to Reckoning

By Energy Rant No Comments
“The U.S. electrical system is becoming less dependable. The problem is likely to get worse before it gets better.” – The Wall Street Journal, February 18, 2022. I can take down another one of my seven predictions for 2022. Some numbers from the WSJ: in 2000, there were fewer than two dozen major disruptions. In 2020 there were more than 180. Customers experienced over eight hours of disruption (on average) in 2020, more than double the number in 2013 when the government began tracking this metric. The Journal reports several reasons for the rickety grid. The Markets’ Disincentives for Reliability...
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Climate Resilience – Flood, Fire, Ice

By Energy Rant No Comments
A reader last week asked, “What kind of home can withstand fire, hurricanes, floods, heat domes, and polar vortex?” This is a great question. I love the challenge, so here we go[1]. Flooding and Landslides Think ahead and ask yourself, “what if” before or even after buying a property. For example, my first home was built to suit my engineering brain. It is wonderful for heating with a wood stove and is very practical; it is not huge and can be expanded with nice amenities for a family. It is built on the side of a bluff in the great...
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climate change

Climate Change, Theory, Practice, and the Farmer’s Almanac

By Energy Rant 2 Comments
We are carrying the ball forward from last week’s post that delivered hoards of historical climate data. If you didn’t see it, check it out because I guaran dam T you will find things you didn’t know – like the fact that the Earth has almost the lowest concentration of CO2 in hundreds of millions of years. That was a surprise! This subject started with a paper from the Institute of Energy Research (IER),[1] CLIMATE POLICY The Case for a New Perspective, which I had barely skimmed, and the super heatwaves in the Northwest. The IER paper provides credible information...
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climate change

Measuring Climate Change

By Energy Rant No Comments
The super heatwave of a couple of weeks ago in the northwest got me thinking about weather anomalies and climate change. What is really happening, as if anyone knows. This fits nicely with a paper that was published a month ago by the Institute for Energy Research entitled Climate Policy - The Case for a New Perspective. That provided some interesting data and got me going on more in-depth research. I added to that through a few hours of mining National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) data. Whoa, does NOAA have data! Yeow! So let’s look at the data and...
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electricity storage - climate change

Innovative Electricity Storage Crushes Batteries; Death Sentence for Duck

By Energy Rant One Comment
I’m not in the electricity storage business, but I can recognize lousy ideas when I see them. Grid-scale battery storage is a bad idea. It will never be anything more than a frequency and voltage regulation technology, although I have to say these are critical functions that batteries can provide. Innovation comes out of left field while everyone else is trying to make a pig fly. And when I see it, I think, “Wow, why did I not think of that?” The Roots of Sound Storage Thermal power generation, particularly from coal, and to a lesser extent, nuclear, have enormous...
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climate

Little People Take on the Climate Industrial Complex

By Energy Rant No Comments
My undergraduate mechanical engineering curriculum at South Dakota State University included requirements for six credits of humanities and nine credits of social sciences. What is this? Who needs this stuff? Walk on the Slippery Rocks I actually enjoyed most of these courses, one of which was philosophy. What a flaky class. There was no work. There were no exams. The goofball professor spewed philosophy and moderated discussions of paradoxes and whatnot. One of those discussions was whether South Dakota should be America’s garbage dump, for princely fees of course. Essentially, should we trade self-induced exploitation for money so we can...
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