Experts say nuclear power needed to slow warming

Experts say nuclear power needed to slow warming
In this Dec. 11, 2012, file photo, part of the containment vessel for a new nuclear reactor at the Plant Vogtle nuclear power plant is under construction in Augusta, Ga. Some of the world's top climate scientists say wind and solar energy will not be enough to head off extreme global warming, and they are asking environmentalists to support the development of safer nuclear power as one way to cut fossil fuel pollution. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)

Some of the world's top climate scientists say wind and solar energy won't be enough to head off extreme global warming, and they're asking environmentalists to support the development of safer nuclear power as one way to cut fossil fuel pollution.

Four scientists who have played a key role in alerting the public to the dangers of sent letters Sunday to leading environmental groups and politicians around the world. The letter, an advance copy of which was given to The Associated Press, urges a crucial discussion on the role of in fighting climate change.

Environmentalists agree that global warming is a threat to ecosystems and humans, but many oppose nuclear power and believe that new forms of renewable will be able to power the world within the next few decades.

That isn't realistic, the letter said.

"Those cannot scale up fast enough" to deliver the amount of cheap and reliable power the world needs, and "with the planet warming and rising faster than ever, we cannot afford to turn away from any technology" that has the potential to reduce greenhouse gases.

The letter signers are James Hansen, a former top NASA scientist; Ken Caldeira, of the Carnegie Institution; Kerry Emanuel, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; and Tom Wigley, of the University of Adelaide in Australia.

Hansen began publishing research on the threat of global warming more than 30 years ago, and his testimony before Congress in 1988 helped launch a mainstream discussion. Last February he was arrested in front of the White House at a climate protest that included the head of the Sierra Club and other activists. Caldeira was a contributor to reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Emanuel is known for his research on possible links between climate change and hurricanes, and Wigley has also been doing climate research for more than 30 years.

Emanuel said the signers aren't opposed to sources but want environmentalists to understand that "realistically, they cannot on their own solve the world's energy problems."

The vast majority of climate scientists say they're now virtually certain that pollution from fossil fuels has increased global temperatures over the last 60 years. They say emissions need to be sharply reduced to prevent more extreme damage in the future.

In 2011 worldwide carbon dioxide emissions jumped 3 percent, because of a large increase by China, the No. 1 carbon polluting country. The U.S. is No. 2 in carbon emissions.

Hansen, who's now at Columbia University, said it's not enough for to simply oppose and promote renewable energy.

"They're cheating themselves if they keep believing this fiction that all we need" is renewable energy such as wind and solar, Hansen told the AP.

The joint letter says, "The time has come for those who take the threat of seriously to embrace the development and deployment of safer nuclear power systems" as part of efforts to build a new global energy supply.

Stephen Ansolabehere, a Harvard professor who studies energy issues, said nuclear power is "very divisive" within the environmental movement. But he added that the letter could help educate the public about the difficult choices that climate change presents.

One major environmental advocacy organization, the Natural Resources Defense Council, warned that "nuclear power is no panacea for our climate woes."

Risk of catastrophe is only one drawback of nuclear power, NRDC President Frances Beinecke said in a statement. Waste storage and security of nuclear material are also important issues, she said.

"The better path is to clean up our power plants and invest in efficiency and renewable energy," Beinecke said.

The scientists acknowledge that there are risks to using nuclear power, but say those are far smaller than the risk posed by extreme climate change.

"We understand that today's nuclear plants are far from perfect."


Explore further

Climate researchers claim nuclear power has prevented approximately 1.84 million deaths

More information: Full letter online: bit.ly/1fc6Dpu

© 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Citation: Experts say nuclear power needed to slow warming (2013, November 3) retrieved 25 June 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-11-experts-nuclear-power.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
0 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments

Nov 03, 2013
Good luck with that. Getting environmentalists to support nuclear power is like getting American conservatives to agree to gun control.


Nov 03, 2013
If one looks at the cost of new nuclear power and the amount of time it takes to build a reactor it's hard to get behind nuclear.

Why should we pay 2x, 3x more and wait 8x longer?

Just based on finances alone nuclear loses. Add in the safety and radioactive waste problems and nuclear loses double.

If we use renewables to replace fossil fuels then we get the job done far quicker for a lot less money. I really don't think these experts in climate science fully understand renewable energy/nuclear energy issue.

Nov 03, 2013
Fukushima. Chernobyl.

Nov 03, 2013
The far left does not want nuclear power precisely because it threatens to reduce co2 based energy, which would undermine the justification for social engineering.

If one looks at the cost of new nuclear power and the amount of time it takes to build a reactor it's hard to get behind nuclear.


That argument can't continue to be relevant decade after decade.

Nov 03, 2013
Noumenon, you are correct. I am one who thinks that there is no warming. The ice caps are expanding at both poles. Too much data used has been edited, redacted, or just plain falsified. Jobs and progress are not killing the planet. We need coal research, we have 900 years supply.

Nov 03, 2013
If one looks at the cost of new nuclear power

How much of these costs are political harassment?
Harassment costs has kept a new oil refinery from being built in the US for over 30 years.

Nov 03, 2013
"Those energy sources cannot scale up fast enough"

I dunno. We went from zero to more than 20 percent from renewables in only 20 years in germany. Nuclear powerplants aren't built overnight (in fact: getting the same 20 percent from nuclear power as we did before required roughly twice as long to build and cost a LOT more)

Then there's the issue that only a handful of companies worldwide have the ability to build nuclear powerplants - whereas everyone and their uncle can build solar- / wind farms nowadays.

I doubt one could scale up nuclear power at the rate it would need to be to make any impact. Especially when we consider that we'd want reactor types that aren't even in production yet (which cuts down the number of companies that could build those to an even smaller number).

Given X amount of resources: Pouring that into renewables seems a lot more sensible/efficient at combatting climate change.

Nov 03, 2013
"We understand that today's nuclear plants are far from perfect."

At least they admit it, but I didn't read anything else in the article.

I just wanted to comment that in the near future we should be working to develop nano scale fusion power sources that run on something sequestered from the atmosphere. Use nano channels and magnetic confinement to produce a space where atoms would fuse at a high rate if injected at proper speed and direction. Develop energy collector hardware to absorb the energy from the tiny fusion events, basically tunable broad spectrum EM sensors. When mass manufactured in parallel we could realize unlimited energy built into everything.

I think popping a golf ball of lithium 6 in your space ship every few years would be sustainable. As long as you are just hanging out in the local system. Gosh I can't wait for personal space ships? Is anyone working on that? Or world hunger? lol.....

Nov 03, 2013
Nuclear power is not so bad after all, people should be more conscious and better informed. There is the aneutronic nuclear fusion that is to be a clean and safe option to replace nuclear fission power plants, with which will be possible to produce carbon-free electric power in small land usage with no long-lived radioactive materials, no meltdowns and no enrichment of uranium and plutonium for nuclear weapon proliferation.

Nov 03, 2013
Fukushima. Chernobyl.

US Navy has been operating and living next to nuclear reactors for decades.

Nov 03, 2013
whereas everyone and their uncle can build solar- / wind farms nowadays.

At what cost?
"David Cameron has pledged to "roll back" the green taxes next year. The Government has said that the levies, which fund renewable energy programmes and wind farms, contribute £112 to the average household bill. However, ministers have warned that the sum could rise to £194 by 2020. "
http://www.telegr...Six.html

Nov 03, 2013
Nothing wrong with nuclear power. It can be safely used.

The problem with nuclear power is our refusal to adequately handle nuclear waste. Of course, we refuse to adequately handle waste which is not nuclear, so it is highly unlikely that we will ever make rational decisions about nuclear waste.

We have lots of coal, natural gas and oil. No need to get bent out of shape trying to find energy sources. Unless, of course, you want to use energy for social redistribution.

Nov 03, 2013
Fukushima. Chernobyl.

US Navy has been operating and living next to nuclear reactors for decades.


So have the Russians. They toasted one....

Safety is not the controlling factor. Better we suffer more Fukushimas and Chernobyls than extreme climate change. But it's not a "nuclear or cook" choice. It's a renewable/nuclear/cook choice.

And renewables win in all categories. They are cheaper than nuclear or climate change. They are faster to install than nuclear. And they bring none of the dangers and waste disposal problems of nuclear.

Some people do love nuclear energy. But there's a more elegant solution. Why build great big, expensive plants which are only "one Homer" away from a meltdown?


Nov 03, 2013
If one looks at the cost of new nuclear power

How much of these costs are political harassment?
Harassment costs has kept a new oil refinery from being built in the US for over 30 years.


Two are being built right now in North Dakota. Dakota Prairie Refinery broke ground this spring. Trenton Diesel Refinery has been permitted.

Nov 03, 2013
And renewables win in all categories. They are cheaper than nuclear or climate change. They are faster to install than nuclear.


Impossible.

Nov 03, 2013
It always puzzled me why environmentalists would not embrace sub-critical designs that can be used to reduce the problematic amount of long lasting nuclear waste. To me it is paramount that we try to clean up this mess: http://wavewatchi...es-away/

Nov 03, 2013
"Imagine a single cubic meter of material—average continental crust—taken from anywhere in the world.

That cubic meter contains, on average, about two cubic centimeters of thorium and half a cubic centimeter of uranium, if each was in its metallic form.

If that thorium were converted to energy in a liquid-fluoride reactor, it would be equivalent to the energy in thirty cubic meters of the finest crude oil in the world. Truly this is a transformational technology that can turn average ores into a energy resource of this magnitude."
http://flibe-ener...e_id=874

Nov 03, 2013
"The fission of uranium-233 will produce approximately 35 different elements as fission products in varying quantities. These elements include xenon, neodymium, molybdenum, and zirconium."
"The radioactive isotopes of xenon decay quite quickly leaving only the stable isotopes of xenon behind. Stable xenon is used by NASA as propellent for ion engines and also by a variety of other industries, and could prove to be valuable.

Neodymium also stabilizes quickly and is the primary constituent of high-performance magnets. Removing neodymium from the salt could be done in connection with a larger strategy to remove all lanthanides, some of which have high neutron-absorption cross sections.

Other valuable fission products that take longer to stabilize include rhodium, ruthenium, and palladium. Rhodium and ruthenium will stabilize completely about a decade after removal from the reactor"
http://flibe-ener...ge_id=64

Nov 03, 2013
Experts my ass!
After the WW2 those experts promoted hundreds of nuclear plants to produce "clean and cheap" energy!
What a lie...
Now these bunch of entrepreneurs disguised on "environmentalists" are planting again this very wrong idea.
It is not only VERY dangerous (see Fukushima, Chernobyl) but it is VERY expensive! To the point as to be undoable.
Why those "experts" don't cite that an average size nuclear plant produces around 250kg of Plutonium/yr and plutonium has a half life of 25000yrs!
Where to store this for 1000s of thousands of yrs??? How to build containers to resist this time span? What country will accept to store it?
Have you read about Yucca Mountain Radioactive reservoir? (http://www.theliv...ty.html)

Nov 03, 2013
We went from zero to more than 20 percent from renewables in only 20 years in germany.


And that's the point where it stops being easy and starts costing a -lot- more money to integrate more renewables into the grid. And you didn't start from zero. You already had water power and biomass based energy production going on since forever.

(in fact: getting the same 20 percent from nuclear power as we did before required roughly twice as long to build and cost a LOT more)


Assuming that only Germany builds any, and you only build one facility at a time.

If you start a worldwide nuclear energy program, the prices will fall pretty rapidly as plants can be built in a conveyor-belt fashion. The biggest cost right now is that you need huge specialized production facilities to produce things like reactor vessel parts, and you maintain all this infrastructure to sell perhaps one powerplant per decade, so of course it costs billions.

Nov 03, 2013
the same 20 percent from nuclear power as we did before required roughly twice as long to build and cost a LOT more


Except around 1980-1985 Germany increased nuclear power production by 100 TWh/yr in roughly six years, as compared to the same increase in renewables between 2000-2012 so actually you did build them twice as fast.

And, you're not taking into account the operating life of the powerplants, which for nuclear power can reach 60 years. The up-front costs are not directly comparable, and the early shutdown of the plants just artifically inflates the price.

There's a curious fact that in Germany, due to opposition, nuclear powerplants were set a quota of how much energy they are allowed to produce before they have to be decommissioned, which was set to match an operating lifetime of 32 years. As about 90% of the cost of nuclear power is in the initial investment and capital costs, that effectively doubled the price of nuclear power in Germany.


Nov 03, 2013
For comparison, Loviisa 1 and 2, and Olkiluoto 1 and 2 in Finland were brought online between 1977-1982 and are set to close in 2030 or 2040 depending on the government's decision. In other words, about 50-60 years as compared to Germany's 32.

That factor alone makes nuclear power in Germany 40-70% more expensive than in Finland, if we assume that you build the same kind of plant at a similiar cost. Letting the reactors run just 10 years more will make a huge difference, which is exactly why the anti-nuclear movement in Germany lobbied for these restrictions - to make nuclear power too costly to operate.

So to the question of how much of the cost of nuclear power is political harassment; quite a lot.

Nov 03, 2013
Fukushima and Chernobyl than extreme climate change
We will need to build nukes to provide the power to offset the effects of climate change; irrigation, desalination, air conditioning, construction megaprojects to protect coastal cities, etc.

Our energy production per capita will HAVE to double and triple to maintain our civilization. Nukes are at present the only option.

Nov 03, 2013
The claim that nukes are our only option is bogus. Nukes are an option.

We can do the job with renewables and storage.

It's a question of how quickly we want to replace fossil fuels, whether we want to spend more or less, whether we want to risk/suffer more nuclear accidents, and whether we want to leave huge amounts of radioactive waste for future generations.

Renewables are the fastest, the least expensive and the safest.

Nov 03, 2013
"Gotta use nukes to FIGHT climate change".....

Hmmmm No.

We need a total overhaul in terms of population growth, every efficient use of resources, cutting back on the greedy bank driven consumerist life style, and heavy investment in renewables.....

All this stupid rhetoric - "Gotta fight the war on drugs, gotta fight pollution, gotta fight.....

How about Embracing and loving GOOD HEALTH, - a healthy life and a healthy planet.

Nukes somehow - don't fit that picture - unless of course, you stand to make loads of profit from bullshitting and bribing everyone into signing up - so they make stacks of profit....

So the answer is, "NO - fuck off - not interested."

Nov 04, 2013
Renewables are the fastest, the least expensive and the safest.


Up to a point.

When you reach the scale where your peak production is higher than your demand, you hit diminishing returns. In order to make use of more intermittent renewables, you start to need storage and transmission technology that costs a lot of money, wastes a lot of energy, and mostly doesn't even exist yet.

And that's just electricity. There's 3-4x more energy being used to make chemical products and refine materials, transport stuff and heat homes and factories. How do you operate a blast furnace on wind power? How do you make cement with solar power? Can you make plastics out of wave energy?

Nov 04, 2013
The claim that nukes are our only option is bogus. Nukes are an option.


Nuclear reactors are best used at full power to maximize energy production over the lifetime of the facility. That has a great effect on the cost, and that's where nuclear power and intermittent renewables are alike.

The more nuclear power you have, the less room in your grid you have for randomly variable production like solar and wind, and vice versa, unless again you have massive storage facilities that can absorb and smooth the output.

That said, nuclear power alone can't be used for the entire demand for the same reason. It can be used for load following, but it instantly becomes much more expensive.

Nov 04, 2013
Ultimately, we have a lost generation of propagandized fools who will not accept nuclear power, period. They are, they have, and they will try to hamstring, sabotage, delay, and litigate or otherwise obstruct this technology using any means possible, and the truth need not stand in their way of their brainwashed, single mindedness for which any means is justified to them in fulfilling their objectives. The only way to deal with the situation is a command economy, and that is politically achievable only after great tragedies convince a large majority that democracy has been abused, and has failed in its primary mission to protect its public from rapacious minorities hellbent on dogma. The initial impetus for change will come from China, which is now instituting a crash program for nuke construction.
No one that does not want his body skinned and processed for 'collagen' for western skin creams dare do what western saboteurs do, routinely creating economic havoc using this issue.

Nov 04, 2013
"Doing the right things for the wrong reasons is typical of humanity. Precession — not conscious planning — provides a productive outcome for misguided political and military campaigns. Nature's long-term design intervenes to circumvent the shortsightedness of human individuals, corporations, and nations competing for a share of the economic pie. Fundamentally, political economists misassume an inadequacy of life support to exist on our planet. Humanity therefore competes militarily to see which political system... is fittest to survive. In slavish observance of this misassumption, humans devote their most costly efforts and resources to "killingry" — a vast arsenal of weapons skillfully designed to kill ever more people at ever-greater distances in ever-shorter periods of time while employing ever-fewer pounds of material, ergs of energy, and seconds of time per killing." - R. Buckminster Fuller

Nov 04, 2013
"Can renewable energies provide all of society's energy needs in the foreseeable future? It is conceivable in a few places, such as New Zealand and Norway. But suggesting that renewables will let us phase rapidly off fossil fuels in the United States, China, India, or the world as a whole is almost the equivalent of believing in the Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy." - James Hansen, 2011

Nov 04, 2013
Fukushima. Chernobyl.

US Navy has been operating and living next to nuclear reactors for decades.

Unfortunately there are companies like BP, Tepco, Enron, and Union Carbide out there. There is no guarantee individuals, companies, or gov'ts will do the "right" thing or will not make mistakes. China currently has 30 plants under construction, let's hope they haven't spread themselves too thin and don't make any mistakes. Or the Iranians or North Koreans. Before long Mugabe will have a program. The possible problems associated nuke tech are exponentially larger than the alternatives.

Nov 04, 2013
"Can renewable energies provide all of society's energy needs in the foreseeable future? It is conceivable in a few places, such as New Zealand and Norway. But suggesting that renewables will let us phase rapidly off fossil fuels in the United States, China, India, or the world as a whole is almost the equivalent of believing in the Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy." - James Hansen, 2011


I find it hard to believe that Hansen made that dumb a statement. I suspected he wasn't very versed in renewables, but I would have thought he knew the basics.

To engage in large scale reactor construction would take a new generation of nuclear engineers and skilled trades people. The first thing we would have to do is to enlarge existing education programs (which would mean finding qualified instructors), turning out the degrees and giving them some practical experience. That would pretty much take a decade. It would take 20 years to bring a significant number of reactors on line.


Nov 04, 2013
We went from zero to more than 20 percent from renewables in only 20 years in germany.


You are pretty fast in Germany when comes to implementing irrational ideologies.

Nov 04, 2013
Fukushima. Chernobyl.


Deaths due to Fukushima disaster: 0
Deaths due to the Chernobyl disaster: 31 - all rescue workers or plant operators

Death due to Coal plants/mining: About 60 / TWh produced - In 2010 world production was about 41000 TWH from coal meaning around 2.5 millon people died of coal power production in one year only.

Deaths due to Oil exploration/production/powerproduction: about 20 / TWh
Even biomass power production is extremely more dangerous than nuclear.

http://www.washin...hic.html

But somehow nuclear is much more scary than the others combined. The human mind is sometimes a strange organ.

Nov 04, 2013
You are pretty fast in Germany when comes to implementing irrational ideologies.

Irrational? We are dependent on fuels from other countries (be it nuclear or fossil...gas from Russia, gasoline from the middle east). Those partners have shown to be not so stable in the long run. With China (and India) buying fuels at outrageous prices on the world market this can mean only one thing: Prices will go up, drastically.

Trying for domestic energy sources that are indefinitely sustainable isn't irrational (even leaving the climate issue aside).

Forecasts are between 33 and 42% of energy from renewable sources by 2030, and almost complete coverage of demand by 2050 (extreme calculations show that we could do it by 2030 - and even if we were to detach ourselves from the European grid. But that would be costly)

The interesting thing is: all this is happening without going deeper into debt (unlike when we went nuclear).

So what's not to like?

Nov 04, 2013
It always puzzled me why environmentalists would not embrace sub-critical designs that can be used to reduce the problematic amount of long lasting nuclear waste.


It's because they have college degrees in sociology, political science, & journalism. The mathematically & science challenged among us feel the the need to be "relevant", so this is what they do. However I do thank them for their willingness to use all the energy my engineering profession continues to supply them with, I call it job security.


Nov 04, 2013
If one looks at the cost of new nuclear power and the amount of time it takes to build a reactor it's hard to get behind nuclear.

Why should we pay 2x, 3x more and wait 8x longer?

Just based on finances alone nuclear loses. Add in the safety and radioactive waste problems and nuclear loses double.

If we use renewables to replace fossil fuels then we get the job done far quicker for a lot less money. I really don't think these experts in climate science fully understand renewable energy/nuclear energy issue.


Erm, UK alone our companies have risen our bills and have been given subsidaries into the dozens of billions of £ for windfarms. Nuclear plants cost mere millions, and put out a lot more energy. In terms of time vs energy output, waiting for a reactor may seem bad, but when you realise it can churn out more energy than 100,000 windfarms, which took decades to setup, you'll find it much better.

Nov 04, 2013
We need a total overhaul in terms of population growth, every efficient use of resources, cutting back on the greedy bank driven consumerist life style, and heavy investment in renewables.....


Let's call for what it is: social restructuring. You're calling for a top-down planned economy style solution to the problem, which as history has proven, is extremely prone to corruption and incompetence and typically ends up as a dictator-worshipping dystopia.

Especially in the developing world, you can't just go telling people to stop consuming and stop breeding, when they're not consuming enough to sustain a stable society in the first place.

You'll just become a horrible monster set to rule the entire world with an iron fist.

Irrational? We are dependent on fuels from other countries (be it nuclear or fossil...gas from Russia, gasoline from the middle east).


Irrational indeed, because that situation is only because you decline using shale gas and nuclear power.

Nov 04, 2013
"Forecasts are between 33 and 42% of energy from renewable sources by 2030, and almost complete coverage of demand by 2050 (extreme calculations show that we could do it by 2030 - and even if we were to detach ourselves from the European grid. But that would be costly)"

HAHAHAHAHA! 33-42% of all energy in germany by 2030. Nice one.

I am sure if those windfarms and solar panels were running at maximum input/output, yes, you will get 33-42%. What happens when there is no wind? Worse yet, what happens when there is no wind at night? Not just that, but a good 30% of Germanys renewables are from Biomass, which is still making CO2. The only difference is it costs a lot lot more than coal, gas and oil.


Nov 04, 2013
The interesting thing is: all this is happening without going deeper into debt (unlike when we went nuclear).


Arguably that's because the EU and the whole common currency business is good business for Germany. You're raking in money from the other member states to build your infrastructure while the other countries in the south are still getting deeper and deeper into debt, and the countries in the north are complaining about the rising cost of membership and loss of jobs.


Nov 04, 2013
"Gotta use nukes to FIGHT climate change".....

Hmmmm No.

We need a total overhaul in terms of population growth, every efficient use of resources, cutting back on the greedy bank driven consumerist life style, and heavy investment in renewables.....

All this stupid rhetoric - "Gotta fight the war on drugs, gotta fight pollution, gotta fight.....

How about Embracing and loving GOOD HEALTH, - a healthy life and a healthy planet.

Nukes somehow - don't fit that picture - unless of course, you stand to make loads of profit from bullshitting and bribing everyone into signing up - so they make stacks of profit....

So the answer is, "NO - fuck off - not interested."


I agree, we do need a rehaul in population growth. Considering you strongly believe this, how about you take the lead and never breed please. Once again, those who have these extremist left wing ideologies never want to follow their own ideals. Like Al Gore and his electricity sucking mansions located by the sea.

Nov 04, 2013
complete coverage of demand by 2050
Without refs your figures have little credibility.

"In terms of quads, the low, medium and high scenarios imply a total 2035 consumption of 940, 1,500 and 2,310 quads, or an increase over the EIA 2035 projection of 170, 1,000 and 1,810 quads. These represent the equivalent of a doubling, a tripling and more than a quadrupling of global energy consumption in 2010... implies massive amounts of new energy.

"Decarbonizing the global economy to a degree consistent with low stabilization targets for atmospheric carbon dioxide implies replacing about 80% of current energy... A 2035 world which consumes energy at the level of 2010 Bulgaria implies more than a doubling of needed carbon-free energy. Germany and US equivalency implies almost a quadrupling and close to a sextupling, respectively."

-Your country will not remain a fat little island in a sea of energy-starved consumers. You will be inundated with refugees until equilibrium is reached.

Nov 04, 2013
you decline using shale gas and nuclear power.

Neither of which are sufficient to power us in any case. Shale gas is a finite source. Nuclear fuels would have to be purchased from other nations (which again means a dangerous dependency).
Nuclear power requires water for cooling and steam generation. We have laws that only allow rivers to be heated by X degrees (otherwise fish start to die and we'd be killing our domestic fisheries) - so you can't space them arbitrarily close.

Germany is small and densely populated/farmed. We can't afford to create any more ecological wastelands or off-limit zones. Nuclear reall ymakes no sense - not ecological, economical nor social or political (as it concentrates wealth in the hands of few which tends to affect political processes and social climate negatively)

Nov 04, 2013
@triplehelix I am sure if those windfarms and solar panels were running at maximum input/output, yes, you will get 33-42%. What happens when there is no wind? Worse yet, what happens when there is no wind at night? Not just that, but a good 30% of Germanys renewables are from Biomass, which is still making CO2. The only difference is it costs a lot lot more than coal, gas and oil.

A Chinese auto company is already making cars that serve as house batteries at night: http://qz.com/142...m-taxis/

And there is hydropumping, which already served 95% of storage needs. But that doesn't fit in with your mental masturbation and career path, no?

Nov 04, 2013
I still don't know why the governments don't encourage us all to put solar panels on our roofs, every building in the land with them on their roof should supply alot of power! Wouldn't be enough to cover all power needs, but it would certainly make a big difference.

Nov 04, 2013
@sirchick - Governments do encourage that - for example, the FIT in Germany or the 30% tax credit in the U.S.

Nov 04, 2013
"Forecasts are between 33 and 42% of energy from renewable sources by 2030...."

HAHAHAHAHA! 33-42% of all energy in germany by 2030. Nice one.

I am sure if those windfarms and solar panels were running at maximum input/output, yes, you will get 33-42%..... but a good 30% of Germanys renewables are from Biomass, which is still making CO2. The only difference is it costs a lot lot more than coal, gas and oil.



In 2012 Germany got 23% of its electricity from renewables. Getting above 33% over the next 17 years should be a piece of cake.

Germany is seeing hours now when they are getting more than 50% of their electricity from renewables.

Biomass CO2 is fairly insignificant. That is carbon which was already in the carbon cycle. It only impacts the atmosphere in that it returns plant carbon to atmospheric carbon a bit quicker. If it helps keep other carbon sequestered then that is a net gain for the planet.

Nov 05, 2013
you decline using shale gas and nuclear power.
Neither of which are sufficient to power us in any case. Shale gas is a finite source. Nuclear fuels would have to be purchased from other nations (which again means a dangerous dependency).


All those objections apply even more so to the current situation where you're importing gas from Russia.

In 2012 Germany got 23% of its electricity from renewables. Getting above 33% over the next 17 years should be a piece of cake.


You're making the fallacy of the heap.

The famous example is, if you take a cup of water and add one degrees of temperature - nothing remarkable happens. You add another, still nothing, an third and fourth, and so-on. Nothing. Therefore it should be just as easy to get past 100 degrees C.

Right?


Nov 05, 2013
Nuclear power requires water for cooling and steam generation. We have laws that only allow rivers to be heated by X degrees


The answer is to use cooling towers. They work by forced evaporation. Those are the vase shaped steaming structures that are the iconic image of nuclear power.

Nuclear reall ymakes no sense - not ecological, economical nor social or political (as it concentrates wealth in the hands of few which tends to affect political processes and social climate negatively)


Right, as if the renewables don't.

Do you think the poor can afford to buy solar panels, when they don't even own the homes they live in? Do you think people who own no land can erect their own windmills?

The EEG surcharges are taking money directly from those who are already poor and giving it to those who are already rich, and blatantly so because industry and business is let almost completely off the hook, making the working classes pay the energy used by the owning classes.


Nov 05, 2013
@Eikka Do you think the poor can afford to buy solar panels, when they don't even own the homes they live in? Do you think people who own no land can erect their own windmills?
There are windmills all over Africa. $10 lamps use solar cells and recharge phones. Do you know a new millennium occurred?

All those objections apply even more so to the current situation where you're importing gas from Russia.
Russia is part of Europe

Nov 05, 2013
There are windmills all over Africa. $10 lamps use solar cells and recharge phones. Do you know a new millennium occurred?


You know full well that's not relevant at all. You're not changing the world's energy production with $10 solar lamps and windmills bought by charity.

Russia is part of Europe


Not all of it, and none of it is part of the EU where Germany is.

Eikka has used a number on 1 cent per Kwh, but I see no justification for such a low number.


That was in reference to nuclear thermal energy, which is cheaper than nuclear electric energy because there is no conversion losses.

The electricity price for new reactors like the Areva SA EPR range between 19€/MWh which is the agreed selling price of the plant, to 40€/MWh which is what the plant in Olkiluoto is actually going to cost. The real price for other powerplants of the same type, given that Areva learns from their mistakes and doesn't repeat them, will be somewhere in between.

Nov 05, 2013
Getting a reliable figure on the cost of nuclear seems very elusive.

I think one of the big issues with nukes is the time factor. Who knows what the price of solar and wind will be - 10 years from now?


We can look at the real world data available. Ontario, Canada and San Antonio, Texas asked for turnkey bids. No bid low, deliver high. The bids they got would have meant electricity in the range of 20 US cents/kWh. Turkey asked for a fixed selling price bid. The only bid they received was 20c/kWh. The UK is negotiating for a 35 year fixed price starting at 15c/kWh. With subsidies included it's 16c. And it will go up with inflation.

I ran LCOE numbers for Olkiluoto 3 using the overnight cost the Breakthrough Institute gave and added in modest financing costs. I came out at about 15c/kWh.

Anyone who suggests a price lower than 15c/kWh is speculating. There's no real world basis for those claims.

My speculation - 10 yrs from now wind and solar <4c/kWh.

Nov 05, 2013
There are windmills all over Africa. $10 lamps use solar cells and recharge phones. Do you know a new millennium occurred?


You know full well that's not relevant at all. You're not changing the world's energy production with $10 solar lamps and windmills bought by charity.


Actually you are. Hundreds of millions of people are going to be installing micro-solar systems. They are going to learn that solar works and works well. They will learn that they don't need fossil fuel or large thermal plants of any type.

They are going to start with their small panel, two LED lights and cell phone charging and over time build it up to renewable grids. Villages and small towns will add wind turbines to help bridge the cloudy days.

They will create an enormous market for solar panels, LEDs, turbines and batteries. They will help drive prices lower and lower. The price of renewables will continue to fall.

Nov 05, 2013
Of course, the price of the new nuclear power depends on how long they're allowed to run.

The Olkiluoto 3 plant electricity price is projected over a lifetime of 45 years. If you force the plant to shut down earlier, the price will be higher.

That's one of the big variables with new nuclear energy, because governments and the people can decide on a whim to shut everything down like they did in Germany. For anyone to take the risk, the plants must recover their costs in less than a decade, which puts the up-front price ridiculously high.

That's why Finland can build one cheaply, but UK can't. There's no reason to believe that the Finns would suddenly freak out and shut down everything because nuclear power actually has popular support there. They're not even considering giving up on nuclear power.

Nov 05, 2013
I ran LCOE numbers for Olkiluoto 3 using the overnight cost the Breakthrough Institute gave and added in modest financing costs. I came out at about 15c/kWh.


Can you show us these calculations and the assumptions used?

They will create an enormous market for solar panels, LEDs, turbines and batteries.


All that depends on that they manage to grow an economy that can afford these things. So far the whole show has been running on donations.

Nov 05, 2013
I ran LCOE numbers for Olkiluoto 3 using the overnight cost the Breakthrough Institute gave and added in modest financing costs. I came out at about 15c/kWh.


Nevermind answering.

The Breakthrough Institute itself estimated the same price at 6.9 c/kWh: http://thebreakth...nuclear/

That estimate is for 20 years of operation at 80% duty cycle.

Finnish operated nuclear power stations have so far had the world's best duty cycles at 95% and over, and they themselves plan to run the new Olkiluoto 3 for at least 45 years. If you use that 45 year figure to correct the estimate, it gives you a cost of 3 c/kWh.

So your "modest financing costs" seem to have inflated the price to about 500%. That's a pretty bad financing deal if I've ever seen any.

Even if the BTI estimates were twice too optimistic and the actual cost was doubled, that would still put the final price at around 4-5 c/kWh.

Nov 05, 2013


They will create an enormous market for solar panels, LEDs, turbines and batteries.


All that depends on that they manage to grow an economy that can afford these things. So far the whole show has been running on donations.


No, the whole show has not been running on donations. The micro-solar programs are largely financed with money from large institutions, bank loans. The people who get the systems pay for them on time, generally over a year's time.

Nov 05, 2013
I ran LCOE numbers for Olkiluoto 3 using the overnight cost the Breakthrough Institute gave and added in modest financing costs. I came out at about 15c/kWh.


Can you show us these calculations and the assumptions used?



The Breakthrough Institute calculates from overnight prices. They do not include financing costs. And as long as this puppy has been dragging on some serious interest has accrued.

Here's where I ran my LCOE calcs -

http://www.nrel.g...coe.html

I used EIA heat rate, O&M, fuel costs, etc.

You can find median fixed and variable O&M here...

http://en.openei....ps/TCDB/

Google the rest.

And ask yourself. If O3 was really going to be generating electricity for 6.9c/kWh would the UK be willing to pay EDF 16c/kWh? Don't you smell something wrong there?

Nov 06, 2013
Nuke plants are ideal terrorist targets

Nov 06, 2013
Me thinks use renewables and hydroelectrics as the storage mediums...

Nov 06, 2013
I used EIA heat rate, O&M, fuel costs, etc.
You can find median fixed and variable O&M here...


Would you list the exact values you used, please?

And ask yourself. If O3 was really going to be generating electricity for 6.9c/kWh would the UK be willing to pay EDF 16c/kWh?


Yes!

As I explained numerous times, the cost depends greatly on the amount of time you allow for recouping the investment. In the UK, nobody is willing to make any long term commitments to nuclear power. Projecting the UK cost over 45 years instead of 20 years removes the difference between the two prices.

It's not that they would want to pay that much, but the UK needs new generating capacity dearly because their old equipment are close to decommissioning and the renewables haven't caught up the slack. So, they're paying whatever it takes. It's a seller's market.

Don't you smell something wrong there?


Your propaganda.

Nov 06, 2013
Windmills bought by charity? Here is one example - of one country in Africa - that is investing massively in renewables.


Yes. South Africa, which is a fairly developed nation. They're not particularily poor.

Your prejudice shows.


You're trying to misdirect the argument. In South Africa, it's not the poor who are investing in renewable energy, but the richest, and the richest are who collect the spoils from it.

Making a couple watt-hours with portable solar lamps and tiny windmills, storing the energy in lead acid batteries that can be afforded by individual families in rural areas of Arfica are largely ineffective, because their manufacture takes more energy than they produce in their lifetime. Remember that the ESOI of lead acid batteries is just 2, which means they consume half the energy they store.

That's why the real effort is in multi-megawatt windmills and large PV installations that are beyond the means of the poor - or even lower middle classes in the west

brt
Nov 06, 2013
Solar power averages 15% efficiency for a new system that will last 30 years maximum. An advanced solar power plant in Arizona produces a maximum of 10 megawatts; that's the best technology in the best possible conditions. Nuclear averages 33% for a 30 year old reactor and will last 100 more years if so desired; and it produces an average of 2200 megawatts. The largest plant (also in arizona) produces 3700 megawatts. You pay an average of 25 cents per kWh for solar. You pay an average of 35 cents per kWh for nuclear.

You pay more for nuclear for 2 reasons. 1.) nuclear power has so many regulations that a nuclear engineer can't fart without a permit. 60% of these regulations politically motivated, similar to the arguments seen above...those people don't know what they are talking about, they just know "nuclear bad, solar good" just like some only know "nuclear good, solar bad". Morons basically. 2.) because they can. Solar and wind can't make up the difference.

brt
Nov 06, 2013
But if cost per kilowatt hour is really a factor to consider...coal costs 2 cents per kWh, blowing everything else out of the water. We also sit on top of $2 trillion in coal reserves. So the argument over which is cheaper is now pointless because nothing compares to coal.

Nuclear costs more because it is cleaner and because it is the only thing that can come close to the amount of electricity that coal produces. You could literally cover the entire surface of the earth in renewable energy sources and not meet the CURRENT needs of 1/5 of the world. Given moore's law and the exponential growth in demand for power; it's just flat out ridiculous to say that solar and wind are the way to go. It's not an opinion, it's a statement of fact.

brt
Nov 06, 2013
The bigger debate is about the benefits of nuclear vs. renewables. Efforts to bring technology to people are not innefective - as you assert. Enabling people to light their homes - replacing very unhealthy kerosene lamps and cookers is a good thing. It is all part of progress. The numbers on nuclear are very hard to pin down. We have to wait until plants are actually operational to try to get real world numbers. We already have the numbers for renewables - and they are looking better every year.


We do in fact have solid numbers for all forms of energy production. Germany, which does not use nuclear and is probably the most advanced as far as renewable energy sources are concerned, has the 2nd highest cost of electricity in the world at the moment. The US is 12 cents per kWh, Germany is 35 cents per kWh. Denmark, also big into renewables, is the highest at 41 cents per kWh.

Those numbers do not look good.

Nov 06, 2013
Solar power averages 15% efficiency for a new system that will last 30 years maximum. An advanced solar power plant in Arizona produces a maximum of 10 megawatts; that's the best technology in the best possible conditions. Nuclear averages 33% for a 30 year old reactor and will last 100 more years if so desired;
What does 15% efficiency even mean? Is there some major expense in sunlight, comparable to uranium ore? Who cares if it's even 1%? If something is FREE what is the relevance of efficiency? When something is FREE, take as much as you want. Besides your silly numbers reflect 1980 technology. There is no real limit to many solar cells. Thirty year old cells are working fine. The technology is only that old so there is no actual data on aging, unlike your leaky terrorist target nuke plants

brt
Nov 06, 2013

What the fuck does that even mean? It there some major expense in sunlight, comparable to uranium ore? Who cares if it's even 1%? If something is FREE what is the relevance of efficiency? When something is FREE, take as much as you want. Besides your silly numbers reflect 1980 technology. There is no real limit to many solar cells. Thirty year old cells are working fine. The technology is only that old so there is no actual data on aging, unlike your leaky terrorist target nuke plants


Efficiency is how much of the energy coming into the system is converted to actual electricity (this is basic information). Efficiency is relevant because like I said, you trashy halfwit man-child, you could cover the entire surface of the earth with the current technology and not meet the energy needs of 20% of the world. If the efficiency were 40%, then you would be a moron to not use solar.

Nov 06, 2013
We do in fact have solid numbers for all forms of energy production. Germany, which does not use nuclear and is probably the most advanced as far as renewable energy sources are concerned, has the 2nd highest cost of electricity in the world at the moment.
When you factor in the cost of USA warfare at $1trillion/year, the real cost of Middle East oil could be US$300 a barrel or more. http://www.financ...69a2bd94

Those numbers do not look good.
Did you bake them yourself?

brt
Nov 06, 2013
If a country requires a certain amount of electricity in order to function, and you can't meet that need, then the country can't function. I'm sure you don't know this, but a lot of people will actually die without electricity. Hospitals, HVAC, emergency services, etc. On top of that, economies would collapse because business need electricity in order to conduct business.

brt
Nov 06, 2013
We do in fact have solid numbers for all forms of energy production. Germany, which does not use nuclear and is probably the most advanced as far as renewable energy sources are concerned, has the 2nd highest cost of electricity in the world at the moment.
When you factor in the cost of USA warfare at $1trillion/year, the real cost of Middle East oil could be US$300 a barrel or more. http://www.financ...69a2bd94

Those numbers do not look good.
Did you bake them yourself?


If you're going to be a bitchy jerk-off just because you don't like to read the facts, then maybe you should piss off. China is 3 cents per kWh, the cheapest. We also aren't at war for oil you dumb cunt, we're at war for world dominance. Gas prices went from under $1 in 2002 to above $3 in 2005. By comparison, it went from 29 cents to 79 cents over a period of 30 years. If we wanted cheaper oil, we wouldn't be there. idiot.

Nov 06, 2013
Efficiency is how much of the energy coming into the system is converted to actual electricity (this is basic information). Efficiency is relevant because like I said, you trashy halfwit man-child, you could cover the entire surface of the earth with the current technology and not meet the energy needs of 20% of the world.
The energy hitting the Earth daily is 2 trillionths of the sun's output. Earth receives about 274 million gigawatt-years of solar energy = 8.2 million "quads" of Btu energy per year.
The entire human race currently uses about 400 quads of energy (in all forms) per year. Put another way, the solar energy hitting the earth exceeds the total energy consumed by humanity by a factor of over 20,000 times. So at 1% efficiency only 0.5% coverage would suit man's needs. Not the entire planet as you purport
If the efficiency were 40%, then you would be a moron to not use solar.
That is the efficiency of new cells. You're a moron by your own standard!

Nov 06, 2013
Are the costs of robustness rolled into solar and wind? If you are not willing to have a backup system sitting idle, like coal, NG, nuclear power generators (which are added costs for acquisition and maintenance) then other storage is required, which have recurring and non-recurring costs.
The only robust solar system I have heard of are solar power satellites that transfer energy to ground stations 24/7. There would need to be some redundancy here, too, spare satellites for example.
Otherwise nuclear is the only scalable, robust alternative.
Decentralizing power generation is quite feasible with the Toshiba or Hyperion sealed designs.

brt
Nov 06, 2013

Really? So what is the cost of a Kwh of electricity generated from nuclear, vs. generated from a wind turbine? Comparing Germany to the U.S. does not give you a fair cost comparison. There are many factors involved in what a country charges for power. Germany has made a decision to be a pioneer in renewables - and yes they are paying a cost for that decision.


That depends on who you're getting your info from. A nuclear energy association website will say 75 cents per kWh; a wind turbine manufacturer in California will say 4 cents per kWh. A reliable estimate is 22 cents per kWh. The issue is that the big boys like Russia, USA, Europe, and Asia, need a certain amount of energy per hour. Wind turbines are not capable of producing the amount of energy per time period needed to function, nowhere even close. What it all comes down to is what the idiot above doesn't want to understand, efficiency. Given the energy put into a system, how much electricity can it produce?

brt
Nov 06, 2013
I don't oppose Germany's decision, it's why they are the cleanest country in the world with the longest living population, but the facts are the facts when you are talking about the power consumption of the entire planet.

There are solar cells that are 44% efficient, but just like the first nuclear reactor ever built, it is not ready for production, it would equate to $300 Billion for a plant producing 200 MWh. Those highly specialized cells only work in a perfect lab setting. The time it would take to make a solar power plant using those 44% efficient cells would take 30 years given the current method of production. Wait five years and that cost will be cut in half and the technology will be far better.

A high school student can make a fusion reactor, but the efficiency (energy in vs electricity produced) is a fraction of 1%, so whoopty freaking doo; it's worthless. So you can pull numbers out of your ass like our friend kochstain above, but the facts are the facts.

brt
Nov 06, 2013
It should also be noted that the biggest problem with making solar cells more efficient is the loss of energy in the form of heat. For those of us who are aware of our surroundings, the energy we receive from the sun is hot...That's the biggest problem in most forms of electricity production and all electronics really, how do we turn energy lost as heat into electricity?

by idiot above I don't mean you djr, sorry, that was confusing. I also should have said that Germany has the highest "life index".

With wind turbines, you are also restricted to the amount of energy you can put into the system. That blade is only going to turn so fast. With sources like nuclear and coal, you can really cram energy into the system. You can't do that with renewables; you have to wait for conditions to accommodate your needs. It's the same reason why car companies are pushing for hydrogen instead of solar powered cars; because life is busy and we don't have time to wait for our care to charge.

brt
Nov 06, 2013
It is a myth that we must back up renewables 100% with fossil fuels.
/


correct. that's why we are backing it up with nuclear power.

Nov 06, 2013

Germany... has the 2nd highest cost of electricity in the world at the moment. The US is 12 cents per kWh, Germany is 35 cents per kWh. Denmark, also big into renewables, is the highest at 41 cents per kWh.

Those numbers do not look good.


Germany's high cost of retail electricity is due to taxes. The cost of industrial electricity in Germany is lower than the EU27 average.

Out of the 29 € cents / kWh German households pay for electricity

8.0 cent - Power Generation & Sales
6.5 cent - Grid Service Surcharge
5.3 cent - Renewable Energy Surcharge
0.7 cent - Other Surcharges

20.5 cents. 14.7 cents without the RE surcharge.

A little higher than the US average, not much. We pay our renewable subsidies with tax dollars in the US.

The Germans pay another 8.5 cents per kWh in taxes that have nothing to do with electricity.

Years before renewables came into play Europe decided to tax electricity and gasoline heavily in order to drive efficiency.

Nov 06, 2013
That depends on who you're getting your info from. A nuclear energy association website will say 75 cents per kWh; a wind turbine manufacturer in California will say 4 cents per kWh. A reliable estimate is 22 cents per kWh.


Wouldn't it make most sense to see what electricity from wind farms is selling for? Not just one wind farm but an entire country's wind farms over a couple of years.

"The prices offered by wind projects to utility purchasers averaged $40/MWh for projects negotiating contracts 2011 and 2012, spurring demand for wind energy."

http://www1.eere....port.pdf

That's US government gathered numbers for the 'lower 48'. Wind farms average sales over a two year period = $0.04/kWh.

That includes some subsidies. The PTC is 2.3 cents for the first 10 years of farm operation, so add a bit more than an penny to the 4 cents to get a non-subsidized price of ~4.5 cents.

Nov 06, 2013
Are the costs of robustness rolled into solar and wind? If you are not willing to have a backup system sitting idle, like coal, NG, nuclear power generators (which are added costs for acquisition and maintenance) then other storage is required, which have recurring and non-recurring costs.
The only robust solar system I have heard of are solar power satellites that transfer energy to ground stations 24/7. There would need to be some redundancy here, too, spare satellites for example.
Otherwise nuclear is the only scalable, robust alternative.
Decentralizing power generation is quite feasible with the Toshiba or Hyperion sealed designs.


Robust nuclear.

TMI, Chernobyl, Fukushima, Humboldt Bay, Davis-Bessie, San Onofre, Fort Calhoun, Brown's Ferry, Crystal River, ...

The list of failed nuclear reactors is quite long. Reactors can and do go offline without warning which is a major problem for grid managers. Nuclear reactors have to be backed up.

Nov 06, 2013
brt - the world has changed in the last few years. The price of electricity from solar panels and wind turbines has become quite affordable. The price of nuclear energy has remained high. Only three years ago solar power was more expensive than nuclear and now it is about half as much. Wind is cheaper still.

It will be much cheaper to power our future grid with renewable generation and compliment it with storage and load shifting than to build nuclear capacity. That's simple math.

It looked for a while as if nuclear energy was our best way to minimize climate change but we now have much better options. We can generate our electricity for about half as much using renewables, get rid of fossil fuels faster, and avoid the danger/radioactive waste problem.

Nov 06, 2013
There are solar cells that are 44% efficient, but just like the first nuclear reactor ever built, it is not ready for production
Neither is the 2018 Toyota Corolla ready for production. Should everyone stop buying cars and only take airplanes?

Solar isn't ready because USA and UK have fucked priorities. USA spends $1trillion/yr starting wars and bribing puppet dictators which they call "foreign aid". UK bank loans 96% to the real estate ponzi scheme bubble that will explode in a new depression, with only 1.5% of loans going to manufacturing

brt
Nov 06, 2013
brt "but the facts are the facts."

Then answer the question. If I build a nuclear power plant today - what will it produce a kWh of electricity for? Same question for a wind turbine, and a solar panel that is selling for around $1 per watt - and probably going to be half that in 10 years (which is about when your nuclear plant will come on line).


I've already answered your question several times, so cut the bullshit.

brt
Nov 06, 2013
This comments section is the perfect example of why we can't have a rational conversation about nuclear power. There are so many brainwashed tools ready to spread whatever anti-nuclear propaganda is necessary in order to prevent the use of a viable and economical resource that they don't want to understand. I'm done with it; someone else can deal with these willfully ignorant assholes.

Nov 06, 2013
Interesting. A GBCW melt down.

What I've seen is people posting real world numbers for nuclear (16c/kWh), wind (4c/kWh) and solar (as low as 5c/kWh) and nuclear fans talking about how some yet to be proven reactor design will produce power at great rates.

BTW, for you thorium fans, according to the nuclear industry fuel costs for current reactors averages $0.0075 cents per kWh. Cutting fuel costs by 99% would still mean electricity costs above 15c/kWh.

I'm simply not seeing the route to competitive nuclear power in the real world.

Nov 06, 2013
Windmills bought by charity? Here is one example - of one country in Africa - that is investing massively in renewables.


Yes. South Africa, which is a fairly developed nation. They're not particularily poor.


The 120 MW Ashegoda wind farm went into operation about a week ago in Ethiopia. I think that's Ethiopia's third wind farm.

There are a number of wind farms spread around the African continent. You can take a look here-
http://www.thewin...a_en.php

And a very large 300 MW farm is just now starting to be installed at Lake Turkana in Kenya.

In addition Africa is installing several geothermal plants. Overall Africa has moved beyond the era of rubbing two sticks together.


Nov 06, 2013
Is there a prolifiration issue with renewables?
How do we stop the spread of wind, water and light. In the wrong hands.
Well lets see... Harnessing the wind enabled warships to sail around the globe. A fleet in your harbor could be compared to the delivery of a nuke.

The last mission in battlefield 4 involves flooding out russian bastards by blowing up a dam.
And then theres the idea that solar thermal arrays could be designed to target planes. And did you know...

"The November 1945 issue of Life magazine ran an article called "The German Space Mirror: Nazi Men of Science Seriously Planned to use a Man-Made Satellite as A Weapon For Conquest"... the Nazis tried to build a manned satellite with a giant solar mirror which would orbit at 22,236 miles above the Earth and used to direct a concentrated stream of solar power to any area on Earth.

-Not to mention the fearmongers here who claim that japanese orbital solar arrays are for frying cities with microwave beams.

Nov 06, 2013
PV solar and wind don't include storage (of course for moderate amounts of PV storage isn't needed because it matches the demand peak fairly well). Nuclear isn't dispatchable either, but it hums along 24/7 so it is predictable.

But a MIX of various power types does much better than trying to meet demand with any one type. NREL did a good study on reaching 80% renewables with current technology ("Exploration of High-Penetration Renewable Electricity Futures), and they ended up with quite a mix (including ~15% nuclear and/or coal).
Well worth reading.

Nov 06, 2013
PV solar and wind don't include storage (of course for moderate amounts of PV storage isn't needed because it matches the demand peak fairly well). Nuclear isn't dispatchable either, but it hums along 24/7 so it is predictable.


That's true. But a grid with a large percentage of nuclear is also going to require storage, dispatchable generation or load-shifting.

Reactors can't be easily turned on and off which means that we would need storage to shift output from low demand to high demand hours. Back when the US was building reactors we built 21 GW of pump-up hydro and CAES in order to incorporate nuclear on the grid. Japan built even more.

The difference between peak and offpeak demand in the US can be as high as 3x. Since solar so nicely matches peak demand it could be that a high percentage nuclear grid would require more storage than a high percentage wind/solar grid.

Nov 07, 2013
Experts say nuclear power needed to slow warming
Warming...?

http://www.woodfo....7/trend

What warming are they trying to slow?


Nov 07, 2013
So many half informed. You who would rate this post so that it would fall below the visibility threshold of others who might read it share some part in perpetuating ignorance and the unnecessary gigatons of CO2 released into the atmosphere. With one hand promote the experts who warn of AGW, with the other condemn the same experts when they discuss nuclear power options.

Yes I have posted this information before and I am kind of tired pushing this angle, but now and then someone tunes in and gets back to me after doing research into the issue.

The Carter administration wanted to build a nuclear reactor designed for *power* production. We had a reactor design from the 50's to not just produce but *accumulate* isotopes of uranium and heavier elements for research and building weapons.

So they build and operated an IFR reactor. Not a hypothetical exercise. A real reactor. Read PBS interview with Dr. Charles Till.

http://tinyurl.com/6rdgw


Nov 07, 2013
It will be much cheaper to power our future grid with renewable generation and compliment it with storage and load shifting than to build nuclear capacity

Incorporating storage is also a safer approach as the grid doesn't collapse if a number of power producers suffers an outage (accident, natural disaster, attack on the IT infrastructure, ... )

Nov 07, 2013
the list of failed reactors is quite long
-What list would that be bob? Your list is only 1% of the nukes worldwide, and on it i can see only 3 that coukd be considered 'failed'. And TMI didnt release any appreciable radiation, which leaves 2.

Meanwhile coal plants routinely spew tons of radioactive material into the environment. I woud consider that a much more significant 'failure' yes?

Nov 07, 2013
Reactors cant be easily turned on and off
-You mean many current reactors dont you? And they only need to be throttled to match load.

"Another departure is that some PWR types will be designed for load-following.  While most French reactors today are operated in that mode to some extent, the EPR design has better capabilities.  It will be able to maintain its output at 25% and then ramp up to full output at a rate of 2.5% of rated power per minute up to 60% output and at 5% of rated output per minute up to full rated power.  This means that potentially the unit can change its output from 25% to 100% in less than 30 minutes..."

-More reason to replace them with newer designs to better interface with solar and wind. Gas turbine and hydro are load-following - coal is not.

Nov 07, 2013
Reactors can't be easily turned on and off

So?
Don't use the power.
New Virginia class submarines have reactors built in, won't be refueled, and will power the sub for 30 years. They won't be using 100% of the power available for 100% of the time and they won't be turning the reactor 'off'.
Sealed nuclear reactors can be built in to the lower levels of city buildings powering the building during the day and switching the load at night to power housing.
Small scale nuclear batteries will make grids more robust.

brt
Nov 07, 2013
the list of failed reactors is quite long
-What list would that be bob? Your list is only 1% of the nukes worldwide, and on it i can see only 3 that coukd be considered 'failed'. And TMI didnt release any appreciable radiation, which leaves 2.

Meanwhile coal plants routinely spew tons of radioactive material into the environment. I woud consider that a much more significant 'failure' yes?


Do you think half of these people have the ability to think long term? I don't. The best comparison is medical overdose. Is it worse to overdoes slightly, yet frequently by taking 5 Tylenol for a headache on a weekly basis; or is it worse to take 100 pills and end up in the ICU two times during your life? The continuous, small overdoses are actually significantly worse for you.

brt
Nov 07, 2013
And what about the cost of handling the waste? .


This is another issue that gets overlooked in renewables. But if I mention a damn word of it, then you stereotype me into some stupid political category because you're a black and white moron. There are grey areas my friend.

The waste from nuclear comes from the spent fuel, which can now be used thanks to new technology. For the older reactors, don't use the fuel and you won't get waste. For newer reactors, use the waste as fuel.

The waste from renewables comes from building them. The environmental impact from building an electric car is something like 200 times more harmful to the environment than just using gas for the life of the car. Think about what goes into building a lithium ion battery that can power a car. The same goes for solar and wind.

The problem you have is that YOU can't separate science from politics. That's why I'm frustrated with your bullshit. I'm talking science and your talking politics.

Nov 07, 2013
"The researchers, from the University's Faculty of Engineering, have shown that mixing plutonium-contaminated waste with blast furnace slag and turning it into glass reduces its volume by 85-95 per cent. It also effectively locks in the radioactive plutonium, creating a stable end product."
""The overall volume of plutonium contaminated wastes from operations and decommissioning in the UK could be upwards of 31,000 m3, enough to fill the clock tower of Big Ben seven times over," says lead researcher, Professor Neil Hyatt.

"Our process would reduce this waste volume to fit neatly within the confines of just one Big Ben tower.""
http://www.sheffi...1.324913
If the wast issue is resolved, then the watermelon enviros will lose a bargaining chip to stop nuclear energy.

brt
Nov 07, 2013
cont...
As far as grid storage is concerned. Sure, great idea. How are you going to do it? With non-theoretical, non-laboratory, real world equipment? "They have a battery that can hold enough electricity to power a house for 3 days". That's great, but if it's state of the art, there's only 1 in the world in a research lab in area 51, then that doesn't do a fucking thing to solve the problem, does it?! That's a bullshit solution that you think works because I'm willing to say that 'such technology does exist'. I'm dealing in facts and you are dealing in points scored by political style arguments in the comments section of a science website. So for me, you don't have the slightest goddamn clue what you're talking about, but that won't stop you from pretending that you're Stephen fucking Hawking in the middle of a lecture on black holes. To me, it is a pointless act and not worth the frustration of trying to have a logical conversation with people that don't care about the truth.

Nov 07, 2013
the list of failed reactors is quite long
-What list would that be bob? Your list is only 1% of the nukes worldwide, and on it i can see only 3 that coukd be considered 'failed'. And TMI didnt release any appreciable radiation, which leaves 2.

Meanwhile coal plants routinely spew tons of radioactive material into the environment. I woud consider that a much more significant 'failure' yes?


Do we need to devise levels of failure?

Level one. Reactors that have melted down: TMI, Fukusima, ...

Level two. Reactors which have been closed prior to 40 years service: Rancho Seco, Humboldt Bay, ....

Level three. Reactors which have unexpectedly shut down leaving the grid short supplied: US and French reactors shut down during heat waves, VA reactors shut down by an earthquake, NY reactor shut down by Sandy flooding.

It's not a nuclear or coal choice. We have a third, much better choice - renewable energy.

Nov 07, 2013
If you'd like a more complete list of reactors which have been permanently closed you can work one up from this page...

http://en.wikiped...reactors

I don't have a list of unplanned disruptions which are not terminal. They range from a panic stop to a gradual restart over a few days like happened to the two North Anna reactors in Virginia when struck by an earthquake to prolonged outages like Brown's Ferry when a fire was started in the reactor by an engineer looking for leaks with a candle.

brt
Nov 07, 2013
That's great Bob. Just plug your ears and keep saying it over and over.

Let's state some other established and obvious facts while we're at it... We shouldn't rape women, we can just take them out to dinner and charm them on the dance floor. We don't have to kill people while robbing them, we can just set up some sort of economic system in which money is exchanged for goods and services.

Do you think weather can't damage renewables? You need to cut it with the straw man arguments as well my bullshitting friend.

So you would like us to keep outdated reactors open? You want the 1950's method of nuclear power to be the only method? You don't want us to recycle our nuclear waste? You don't want old reactors to be shut down to make way for new reactors that are safer? That's idiotic Bob.

Nov 07, 2013
Reactors cant be easily turned on and off
-You mean many current reactors dont you? And they only need to be throttled to match load.


Load following makes the produced electricity more expensive. Load following results in few MWh of electricity.

The high cost of nuclear electricity comes from the capex, finex and fixed operating costs. Not from variable operating costs. The 16c/kWh price of the purposed UK/French/Chinese Hinkley reactor is based on the assumption that the reactor will operate at full output for 90% of the year.

Annual costs are totaled and divided by the expected output. That establishes the cost of electricity.

If the reactor follows daily demand patterns, cycling down to 50% for half of the 24 hour cycle the output will drop by 25%. That would turn 16c/kWh into 21c/kWh for all electricity produced.

Nov 07, 2013
That's great Bob. Just plug your ears and keep saying it over and over.

Do you think weather can't damage renewables? You need to cut it with the straw man arguments as well my bullshitting friend.
So you would like us to keep outdated reactors open? You ... only method? You don't want us to recycle our nuclear waste? You don't want old reactors to be shut down to make way for new reactors that are safer? That's idiotic Bob.


Clearly weather can damage renewables. But since they are significantly cheaper than nuclear we can replace them at a lower cost. And we don't get stuck with the very expensive cost of site cleanup that we have when a reactor melts down.

It makes no sense to build new nuclear. I think we should continue to use those reactors which are carefully inspected and found to be safe. Close coal first, NG next, and close existing reactors before they become dangerous.

Do you need to get nasty to make your case?

Nov 07, 2013
"The researchers, from the University's Faculty of Engineering, have shown that mixing plutonium-contaminated waste with blast furnace slag and turning it into glass reduces its volume by 85-95 per cent. It also effectively locks in the radioactive plutonium, creating a stable end product."
""The overall volume of plutonium contaminated wastes from operations and decommissioning in the UK could be upwards of 31,000 m3, enough to fill the clock tower of Big Ben seven times over," says lead researcher, Professor Neil Hyatt.

"Our process would reduce this waste volume to fit neatly within the confines of just one Big Ben tower.""
http://www.sheffi...1.324913
If the wast issue is resolved, then the watermelon enviros will lose a bargaining chip to stop nuclear energy.


It doesn't deal with the millions of tons of radioactive non-fuel waste. Or the highly contaminated reactor sites.


Nov 07, 2013
Fukushima. Chernobyl.


http://en.wikiped...qiao_Dam

Catch up...

It doesn't deal with the millions of tons of radioactive non-fuel waste. Or the highly contaminated reactor sites.


It's called reprocessing. I suggest a Google search and some reading to be abreast of the subject being discussed.

As to reactor sites, which ones?

Nov 07, 2013
You know though, it really does occur to me that trying to convince people who view the environment as an entity with arbitrary value (read a religion) that nuclear power is a good policy is like trying to convince conservatives that AGW is real. It's all about fear and ignorance. Some people are afraid of nuclear power...period. It doesn't have to be rational, you can show them graphs and statistics all day long, it won't help. They would rather have solar and wind and the benefits of nuclear over these technologies is taken personally somehow.

So it's just better to change the conversation...I don't know to what, but unless you address their fears directly it isn't going to change. They don't even SEE the need to change the conversation, again just like AGW deniers.

Nov 07, 2013
You are correct. Many are afraid of nuclear power.

Some of that fear is deserved. Nuclear reactors can and have melted down, causing major damage and deaths.

Some of the fear is overblown.

Regardless, the fear is there and those making decisions about what capacity to build have to take it into account. People who don't want a reactor built near them will resist and that further drives up the cost of an already too expensive technology.


Nov 07, 2013
Fukushima. Chernobyl.


http://en.wikiped...qiao_Dam

Catch up...

It doesn't deal with the millions of tons of radioactive non-fuel waste. Or the highly contaminated reactor sites.


It's called reprocessing. I suggest a Google search and some reading to be abreast of the subject being discussed.

As to reactor sites, which ones?


RE: reprocessing. I would suggest you read this paper on breeder reactors. At least get through the overview.

http://fissilemat...rr08.pdf

Reactor sites. We could start with the obvious - Chernobyl and Fukushima. And then go on to the many other closed reactors which we are letting rot in place.

Oh, might we want to bring Hanford into the discussion? Been keeping up with its flume of radioactive liquids making its way to the local aquifer?

RE: Banqiao Dam. Yep. People shouldn't live below dams in the danger zone. Your point is?


Nov 07, 2013
RE: reprocessing. I would suggest you read this paper on breeder reactors. At least get through the overview.


Indeed, but I was wondering if you'd read any of the latest research on third and fourth generation reactors and the fuel cycle. This stuff is outdated and based on principles\designs we came up with in the 1950s and 60s. It's very "strawmanish"...

Reactor sites. We could start with the obvious - Chernobyl and Fukushima. And then go on to the many other closed reactors which we are letting rot in place.


Again, I have to ask do you place an arbitrarily high value on the environment? If you do then there is no further purpose in discussion. NO means of energy production is without issues and I believe we should have energy. If we can't agree on that then we won't agree on anything else...

RE: Banqiao Dam. Yep. People shouldn't live below dams in the danger zone. Your point is?


Actually there were a few more links that didn't show up on edit (cont).

Nov 07, 2013
Here's one of the links if more are needed I can provide them, however a search on your own will give you a litany of how deaths attributed to nuclear power are DWARFED by coal, oil, gas, and in some cases even "renewables" though I forget which ones at the moment.

http://climate.na...news/903

My point is that there isn't a SINGLE form of power generation without problems, risks and dangers. Nuclear is blown WAAAAY out of proportion to hysterical and histrionic levels. My point wasn't about where people should live in relation to dams.

Nov 07, 2013
The thing you who are against nuclear power have to ask yourselves honestly is WHY do you oppose it. Do some soul searching and be HONEST. Is it about your feelings or something else. Quite frankly I don't want to convince you the sky is blue, we'll talk about it all day and at the end of the day you'll still insist it's green if there is some reason you're afraid to admit it's blue.

You're entitled to your feelings and opinions, but NOT your own facts. The FACT is that nuclear power causes FAR fewer deaths than almost any other source out there, AND it works, is practical, and has come a looooong way since the 1950s. Those are the facts, and nothing changes them.

Nov 07, 2013
Indeed, but I was wondering if you'd read any of the latest research on third and fourth generation reactors...


Third+ and fourth gen reactors are hypotheses. We do not know if they will work or what they will cost. I've seen nothing that suggests future reactor designs would generate competitively priced electricity. Only that meltdown dangers could be reduced.

Again, I have to ask do you place an arbitrarily high value on the environment? If you do then there is no further purpose in discussion....


I don't know what " an arbitrarily high value on the environment" might be. We have only one planet and a present climate that serves us fairly well. I suppose there's nothing more valuable.

The issue is how we best transition off fossil fuels. The answer for me is to use the least expensive, fastest to install, and safest technologies.

All technologies come with some level of risk. Nuclear is simply the most risky. And expensive. And slow to install.

Nov 07, 2013
I suppose there's nothing more valuable.


There is. People are more valuable. I'll tell you why too.

People are the only entities we know about who are even capable of holding values...so no people, no values, no valuABLES. Simple as that. It's like having a restaurant without food. The axiom of values are human beings. That doesn't mean human beings have an arbitrarily high value, it means that it's completely non-nonsensical to discuss values outside the context of including human beings.

Now VERY religious people put an arbitrarily high value on their religious beliefs. It doesn't make for very good outcomes in my opinion, moreover it's quite impossible to have a rational discussion with someone who actually believes something is more valuable than anything else. So I'm asking myself how productive this conversation will be. I'm not likely to convince you of anything if your values are so over weighted....

Nov 07, 2013
I suppose there's nothing more valuable.


There is. People are more valuable. .


The reason we don't want to trash this, our only planet, is for people. Is that not clear to you?

Nov 07, 2013
The thing you who are against nuclear power have to ask yourselves honestly is WHY do you oppose it.... The FACT is that nuclear power causes FAR fewer deaths than almost any other source out there


Honestly, I'd be all for nuclear energy if we had no better options. I look at the cost, time to install, and safety facts and the facts convince me that it's time to leave the nuclear dream behind.

As for deaths, clearly coal is the worst by far.

To compare deaths across other technologies we have to define what we're talking about, fuel-caused or other.

We know that there are some deaths at wind and solar installations from falls and construction accidents. We know that there are some deaths at nuclear plants due to falls, steam escapes and during construction. We have no numbers for comparing non-fuel caused deaths.

We know that people have been killed by radiation at nuclear sites. We know of no one killed by wind or sunshine at wind and solar farms.

Nov 07, 2013
Here's a list radiation caused fatalities. Note that some are not due to nuclear energy but to radiotherapy accidents.

My quick count (do your own) says something above 150 deaths due to nuclear energy and about 5,000 cancer deaths/deaths yet to happen from Chernobyl and Fukushima.

http://en.wikiped...ath_toll

Nov 07, 2013
Heres robert stone, environmentalist, on piers morgan, for opinions which you greenies can use to update your posturings. Kennedy is a solar power exec so of course he is biased. And hes a kennedy.
https://www.youtu...lyg#t=74
My quick count (do your own) says something above 150 deaths due to nuclear energy
From your link

"There have been no deaths directly attributed to radiation from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster"

-Leaving chernobyl as the only commercial plant accident resulting in deaths.

In comparison:
-Hoover dam - 112 construction deaths
-35 fatalities associated with wind turbines in the United States from 1970 through 2010
-death of over 40 people due to the collapse of an under-construction chimney at a power plant in Chhattisgarh
-pollution created by burning coal is causing 18,200 premature deaths and costing up to €43 billion each year in Europe (not to mention coal mine accidents)

Nov 07, 2013
The reason we don't want to trash this, our only planet, is for people. Is that not clear to you?
From the stone/morgan interview; the only way to provide adequate power for 9 billion people is nuclear. Nuclear is very safe and will be very cheap once plants can be manufactured and standardized. We dont want to trash large portions of the population by denying them sufficient energy. Is that not clear to you?

Nov 07, 2013
Level one. Reactors that have melted down: TMI, Fukusima, ...
"List of hydroelectric power station failures" -At the top of the list:
"Banqiao Dam, China - 26,000 dead from direct flooding, 145,000 dead from subsequent famine and epidemics, 11 million homeless. Caused loss of generation, dam failed by overtopping"
NO COMPARISON
Level two. Reactors which have been closed prior to 40 years service: Rancho Seco, Humboldt Bay, ....
"Sherco power plant repairs may take 16 months, cost $200 million... turbine blades were turned into "shrapnel" and one spinning metal part the size of a five-gallon bucket got hurled through the control room..."
ONLY ONE OF MANY
Level three. Reactors which have unexpectedly shut down leaving the grid short supplied
"List of thermal power station failures" -wiki
THIS HAPPENS FREQUENTLY

-Conventional hydro and fossil fuel plants fail, are closed prematurely, and experience downtime due to accident. And these tend to be worse than nuclear.

Nov 07, 2013
So how long do you think it will take me to find a contemporary one for you? 15 sec

"Sayano–Shushenskaya Dam, Russia - 2009 Sayano-Shushenskaya hydro accident, 6 GW power generation loss, 75 fatalities, due to turbine failure
No one can guaruntee that there will not be another Fukushima
No one can guarantee that one of these wont happen... soon...

"CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The U.S. coal industry had its deadliest year in nearly two decades in 2010, with much of the death toll stemming from a single explosion... As of Thursday, 48 miners had died in the nation's 1,500 coal mines over the past 12 months"

ps hoover dam is still operating. This makes it contemporary.
How's that e-cat thingy working out? You said we would know definitively by April. Did you buy one yet?
I already answered that one. The independent report came out months ago. Did you miss it? Next is the long-term operation report, due 'Surely Within 2014′ (Maybe first half)' - rossi

Nov 07, 2013
Otto, we all agree that people get killed in construction projects. We really don't have any data that tells us whether one type of construction is more dangerous than another, but we might be able to make some guesses.

I've reviewed all the wind industry deaths and many of them were in the industry's early years. Some were things like worker's tethers getting caught in spinning gears. That seems to no longer be happening as better safety regs have been put into place. The same with rooftop solar. New safety regulations have greatly decreased workplace injuries and deaths.

I suspect a new nuclear build would be safer than those plants built a few decades ago. We've improved workplace safety significantly over time.

The safety issue with nuclear is not people getting killed during construction. It's about the fuel itself. Radiation, quite simply, is dangerous. Containment domes, emergency cooling systems, security guards, etc.

That's obvious to you is it not?

Nov 07, 2013
"From the stone/morgan interview; the only way to provide adequate power for 9 billion people is nuclear."

One person on a television program. A rather lightweight television program as well. That's hardly convincing evidence.

We've got a pile of scientific studies which show very clearly that we could power the world several times over with renewable energy.

We know that renewable energy is greatly cheaper than nuclear energy and brings none of the hazards of nuclear energy into our lives.


Nov 07, 2013
Radiation is dangerous
You did not acknowledge the banqaio dam failure. 26k initial dead, a few hundred thousand thereafter. NO nuclear disaster short of war could ever wreak such damage.

Dams disrupt riverine ecologies. They silt up and prevent fish migration. Coal mining alone causes far more damage than nukes ever will, either during extraction or in waste control. There is no comparison in fatalities, ecological devastation, and long term health. They are a persistant threat.
http://www.rfa.or...450.html

If you posted those studies I didnt see them. Did they include the projected quadrupling of energy needs by 2050 which I posted? Most of us would not be satisfied living on the energy budget of your typical bulgarian.


Nov 07, 2013
Of course dams can be dangerous. You OK now?

Nuclear energy brings a unique danger into our lives. One that we do not need. We have safer, cheaper, faster to implement alternatives.

We're just going around in circles now. The nuclear fans are unwilling to acknowledge that nuclear is too expensive to consider and unable to produce any proof that nuclear can produce affordable electricity.

The world's decisions on what to install will be made largely on a cost basis. A few reactors will be built by people too dense to understand current costs. Over the 5 - 15 years it takes to bring them on line the cost of renewables and storage will almost certainly continue to drop making the cost different even greater and the foolish of those new reactors very obvious to all.

The folks building the new Vogtle reactors in Georgia seem to be figuring it out. Recently one of them stated that with hindsight they should not have built new nuclear.

Nov 07, 2013
unique
Unique? Does dying from lung cancer associated with coal burning radioactivity make one special as well? There is a much higher possibility of that.
one that we dont need
Well according to the experts who wrote tge articlae and at least one guy (expert) on a tv show, youre wrong. I suspect you are in a minority because the facts just arent there. Where are those studies you mentioned?
pretty silly
Sorry but safety standards vary greatly around the world. OSHA was enacted in 1971. How many workers die today building gas turbine plants in africa for lack of similar standards? How many have died building coal plants in china?

You reference fukushima and chernobyl, both in foreign countries. How many died building reactors in the soviet union? We must know for fair comparison. How many fall off of bamboo scaffolding in indonesia, building refineries?

Nov 07, 2013
current costs
Robert stone the expert explained that to you. International standardization and modular production line manufacturing will cause prices to plummet and dependability to rise, just as within the manufactured home industry.
a few reactors
Over 60 are under construction at the moment. Look it up. Something else you didnt now.

Nov 07, 2013
... standardization and modular production line manufacturing will cause prices to plummet and dependability to rise, just as within the manufactured home industry. -Over 60 are under construction at the moment. Look it up. Something else you didnt now.


To suggest that modularization and standardization could drop the cost of nuclear electricity 3x is putting a lot of faith in something that hasn't happened to date. The Vogtle site is using AP1000 reactors which are both modular and a standardized design. They certainly won't be cost competitive with wind, solar and natural gas.

I posted a list of all reactors in the world up higher - the operating, closed and under construction. I am familiar with the numbers. I also "now" that the number currently being built will not give us a net increase in capacity. They won't make up for the ones closed and closing.

And be cautious with that "being built" list. Some are simply planned and some plans have been shelved.

Nov 07, 2013
modularization and standardization could drop the cost of nuclear electricity

The US Navy has been doing so for decades.

Nov 08, 2013
Whatever the Navy has been doing has not brought affordable nuclear to public use.

If a company was able to generate electricity for less than 16c/kWh they would now be in discussion with the UK rather than EDF and their Chinese partners. Let's remember, the UK sought out the best price available.

And previously Ontario CA, San Antonio TX and Turkey also sought out the best price available. In those three cases not a single company stepped up and offered to build reactors at affordable prices.


Nov 08, 2013
On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant's reactor No. 4 blew up after a cooling capability test, and the resulting nuclear fire lasted 10 days, spewing 400 times as much radiation as the bomb dropped on Hiroshima. To date, it's the world's worst nuclear accident. The 2011 Fukushima meltdown, of course, is still playing out -- but actually, so is Chernobyl.
Nearly 28 years after the disaster, Reactor No. 4 simmers under its "sarcophagus," a concrete and metal cover hastily built after the accident. It's now cracked, rusted and leaking radiation. A partial roof collapse last February sent reverberations of fear throughout the world. As well it should have. With 200 tons of lava-like radioactive material still below the reactor, and the "New Safe Confinement" aimed at containing and protecting it not scheduled for completion till 2015 (already 15 years overdue) this story of nuclear disaster is in its early chapters.

Nov 08, 2013
You did not acknowledge the banqaio dam failure

I think you're missing a very critical distinction here.

a) Disasters that can be cleaned up, remain local and are OVER at some point of time. These require a singular expenditure of resources to REMOVE their effects on humanity.
b) disasters that are NOT local, CANNOT be cleaned up and whose effects will only accumulate over time as similar disasters happen - leading to ever more resources needed to mitigate their impact on our lives (cocaine effect).

Type a) disasters can be acceptable (depending on gain vs. risk magnitude and risk probability).
Type b) are not acceptable (no matter the gain, risk magnitude or the risk probability - as no matter how small the risks are, eventually the compound resources needed for mitigating the effects will exceed what you have at your disposal.)

Nov 08, 2013
"There have been no deaths directly attributed to radiation from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster"
The dead may disagree

Nov 08, 2013
The reason we don't want to trash this, our only planet, is for people. Is that not clear to you?


It's not clear to me at all for several reasons. First, we are rapidly approaching a point in our technology where we absolutely do not need the environment of Earth to live. Secondly, many times when I have these discussions with people they seem to think the Environment is an end in itself and has ultimate value apart from human beings and regardless of their circumstance. I wasn't clear on where you stood on that so how could I be clear in your meaning?

Honestly, I'd be all for nuclear energy if we had no better options. I look at the cost, time to install, and safety facts and the facts convince me that it's time to leave the nuclear dream behind.


So how will you address problems of scale? Land use? What about when we run out of places to put things and the energy demands of our civilization continue to rise? (cont)

Nov 08, 2013
(cont) also the insanely high costs of nuclear plants are directly tied to regulation. This is not necessary regulation, this is OVER regulation demanded by a public who is thinking with their fears and not critical thinking. This is the same problem nuclear power in general has. Like so many other things that involve human beings "the problem isn't the problem".

How can you power solar system crossing spacecraft practically using solar power? How will you power underwater craft? What reason is there to use huge solar panels for future space construction when you can build a small reactor and have far better power output? Have you looked at energy densities? Do you know how important they are and why for a developing civilization? If you address all of these questions adequately I have about twenty more...

Nov 08, 2013
All that said I DO believe solar (not really wind but to each his own) has a place as an adjunct, and a niche power supply. Not a really important one, but it definitely has a place. It will NEVER power a highly advanced civilization to the stars though. OR at least no one has ever been even close to demonstrating to me exactly HOW that works or what it looks like.

Nov 08, 2013
I think you're missing a very critical distinction here... disasters that are NOT local, CANNOT be cleaned up
What is particularly disturbing about your post aa is that you seem to regard the temporary loss of land use as more significant than the deaths of nearly a half a million people. Was this subconscious or only an indication of the thoughtlessness of much of your postings?

Lets compare the relative ruination of real estate between chernobyl:and Banqiao.

Chernobyl Exclusion Zone - 2,600 km2; cesium's "ecological half-life" - between 180 and 320 years

Banqiao - 10 km wide wave swept over 825 km2... of countryside and countless communities devastated... 60 dams downstream destroyed along with irrigation systems... restoration only begun late 1980s; 1000s of tubewells dug to replace pumping stations"

-So chernobyl is a smaller area with a longer, but not unlimited, exclusion time. But banqiao has far fewer inhabitants left to reoccupy, doesnt it? A wash.

Nov 08, 2013
whose effects will only accumulate over time as similar disasters happen - leading to ever more resources needed to mitigate their impact on our lives
"China has 87,000 reservoirs across the country; most of which were built in the 1950s-1970s using low construction standards. Most of these reservoirs are in serious disrepair, posing challenges to the prevention and control of flood-triggered geological disasters in areas with a population of 130 million or more..."
Type b) are not acceptable (no matter the gain, risk magnitude or the risk probability - as no matter how small the risks are, eventually the compound resources needed for mitigating the effects will exceed what you have at your disposal.)
-And so per your classification of disaster potentials, chinas vast dam-building program clearly fits into your Type b) category. Meaning that even for that single country it is AT LEAST an order of magnitude worse than the potential for similar nuclear-related ruination.

Nov 08, 2013
So how will you address problems of scale? Land use? What about when we run out of places to put things and the energy demands of our civilization continue to rise? (cont)


There are no problems of scale or land use. Were we to use only solar for 100% of our projected energy needs in 2050 we would need to use less than 1% of global land area.

http://www.the9bi...by-2050/

Here's a graphic for 2030. There's also a similar graphic for 100% with offshore wind on the web.

http://landartgen...ives/127

Take a look at house that have solar panels on their roofs. Most systems are designed to produce 100% of the electricity used by that house in a year. The arrays seldom cover one slope.

Wind turbines have a fairly small land use. About a quarter acre per turbine. The US could generate 100% w/wind and the amount of land used would be less than four Disney Worlds.

Nov 08, 2013
All that said I DO believe solar (not really wind but to each his own) has a place as an adjunct, and a niche power supply. Not a really important one, but it definitely has a place. It will NEVER power a highly advanced civilization to the stars though. OR at least no one has ever been even close to demonstrating to me exactly HOW that works or what it looks like.


There's a large number of studies which show that it is entirely feasible to power our lives mainly with wind and solar. Storage would be needed. Other renewables make the job easier.

You could start with this paper that lays out the basic solution. I can give you a list of several others that are more recent and use real world data in their analysis.

http://www.scient...-by-2030

"To the stars" - no one has suggested we could do interplanetary travel using renewable energy. That's irrelevant to this discussion.


Nov 08, 2013
(cont) also the insanely high costs of nuclear plants are directly tied to regulation. This is not necessary regulation, this is OVER regulation demanded by a public who is thinking with their fears and not critical thinking. This is the same problem nuclear power in general has. Like so many other things that involve human beings "the problem isn't the problem".


Looks to me as if Fukushima was under regulated. How did that work out?

Which safety regulations do you think we should remove in order to make nuclear energy less expensive?

(Regulation paperwork in the US was significantly streamlined a few years back. There's pretty much nothing left to cut there except to eliminate government oversight of reactors.)

Nov 08, 2013

ARE THEY CRAZY ! WE HAVE OVER 1,000 NUCLEAR WASTE SITES ALREADY THAT

US GOVT. CANNOT HANDLE, YUCCA IS CLOSED AND NOBODY WANTES NUCLEAR WASTE !

Nov 08, 2013
It will NEVER power a highly advanced civilization to the stars though.
Aren't stars solar-powered?
US GOVT. CANNOT HANDLE, YUCCA IS CLOSED AND NOBODY WANTES NUCLEAR WASTE !
Ryggie's libertarian utopia, Somalia, is currently accepting waste of all classes including nuclear waste. Not inviting radiation into your house and body is socialism!

Nov 08, 2013
Nuclear waste can be reprocessed for fuel.
Fukushima was under regulated.

No, it was a typical Fascist business arrangement with the state controlling businesses.

Of course the other issue is don't build that type of nuclear power plant in the path of a tsunami.

Nov 08, 2013
"He believes a thorium turbine about the size of an air conditioning unit could more provide cheap power for whole restaurants, hotels, office buildings, even small towns in areas of the world without electricity. At some point, thorium could power individual homes."
""The radiation that we develop off of one of these things can be shielded by a single sheet off of aluminum foil," Stevens said." "You will get more radiation from one of those dental X-rays than this.""
http://mashable.c...rything/

Nov 08, 2013
"More large corporations have decided that the electric power grid is unreliable and are planning to unplug from it and generate their own electricity."
"Walmart, Safeway, Google, Bank of America and Coca-Cola, are spending hundreds of millions of dollars on systems to generate their own electricity. "
"The generation of electricity by private corporations has grown to such a level that it's beginning to cause utility executives to worry, Journal reporters Rebecca Smith and Cassandra Sweet noted. They wrote: "The growing number of companies that are at least partially energy self-sufficient is sending a shudder through the utility industry, threatening its revenues and growth prospects.""
{Of course all utilities are monopolies protected by the state.}
http://www.offthe...er-grid/

Nov 08, 2013
"my stomach tightens when someone like Van Jones asserts that "no body wants a nuclear plant in their backyard." Perhaps it is because I have lived for several months at a time — 11 times — with a nuclear propulsion plant sealed up in the same 425 foot long steel tube that I occasionally called "home". Maybe is because I have lived in or visited a number of towns that already have a nuclear plant in their figurative backyard.

I also just returned from a meeting in another town — Idaho Falls, ID — where nearly every resident would vote to host a new nuclear power plant. The state's Lieutenant Governor spoke at that meeting and essentially told the assembled audience full of vendors, suppliers, academics, and operators to "come to Idaho" and build."
http://theenergyc...eighbors

Nov 08, 2013
"More large corporations have decided that the electric power grid is unreliable and are planning to unplug from it and generate their own electricity."

http://www.offthegridnews


I'm very skeptical about that report. Yes, some companies have decided that solar saves them a lot of money and are installing panels. Walmart is now the largest solar electricity producer in the US. Going totally off grid, unlikely.

Yes, utilities are worrying about end-user solar. The old business model for utilities no longer works. Due to efficiency demand is dropping. End-user solar is also dropping demand. It looks like we will have cheaper storage before long which will allow end-users to save and use their own electricity.

Utilities are probably going to suffer large amounts of stranded assets. We've seen one nuclear reactor closed this year because it couldn't compete on the open market. A couple dozen more are in trouble. Coal plants are going to be closed. Mines are ..OFC.

Nov 08, 2013
"my stomach tightens when someone like Van Jones asserts that "no body wants a nuclear plant in their backyard." Perhaps it is because I have lived for several months at a time


I lived downwind of a POS reactor - Rancho Seco. We were told that 20 minutes after we heard the siren start we should be at least 20 minutes further away, and to keep going. The military may run a tight ship and keep quality high. That is not the case with civilian nuclear.

It's also not true of the Russian Navy. They melted one of theirs.


Nov 08, 2013
Nuclear waste can be reprocessed for fuel.
Fukushima was under regulated.

No, it was a typical Fascist business arrangement with the state controlling businesses.

Of course the other issue is don't build that type of nuclear power plant in the path of a tsunami.


TEPCO is an independent corporation. Not a state run utility.

Both TEPCO and the Japanese government were aware that they were building/permitting reactors in and area previously covered by water during a tsunami. They built in a dangerous location with full knowledge of the risk they were taking.

Nuclear energy is too dangerous to be left in the hands of humans. Too many of us are Homers or greedy bastards.


Nov 09, 2013
I also just returned from a meeting in another town — Idaho Falls, ID — where nearly every resident would vote to host a new nuclear power plant. The state's Lieutenant Governor spoke at that meeting and essentially told the assembled audience full of vendors, suppliers, academics, and operators to "come to Idaho" and build."
http://theenergyc...eighbors
Idaho falls depends on the income from INEL labs to allow it's existence. That is a government institution. You don't like the government ryggie? They are all masonic mormons who get their job through the bishop so descent = unemployment and being outcast from their family and community. Pick another group of penis-suckers

INEL is famous for directly injecting 30,000 curries of strontium 90 radiation into the water supply. That's enough radiation to kill 30,000,000 people

Nov 09, 2013
It's also not true of the Russian Navy. They melted one of theirs.

Socialists don't care about human life.
TEPCO is an independent corporation.

It's called Fascism. Socialists attack businesses, but ignore how much control the govt has over them. Why don't socialists what to examine the failures of the govt in these matters?

Nov 09, 2013
Japan is a democracy.

To say that socialists don't care about human life is simply silly. If we look at the most "socialist" countries in Europe we find the most concern for others. The strongest safety nets. The best education and health systems. An attitude that we're all in this together and it is in each of our best interests to look out for others. After all, there's always a chance that something will happen to each of us and we'll need those safety nets.

If you want to find a country which cares the least for its citizens look for a place run by a strongman government. Or one which has no government at all. Kind of a libertarian paradise.

But what does all this have to do with the hazards of nuclear energy?


Nov 09, 2013
What warming? Arctic has more ice than in 1971, Antarctic was cooler by -23 last winter, Alaska had one of the coldest winters on record. Chile lost about 250,000 Alpaca's due to the severe winter. Linking everything to climate change is a dead duck and those that continue to regurgitate it are starting to look like fools.

Nov 09, 2013
Sorry, Rick. You're measuring in only two dimensions. Ice comes in three.

At the end of the 1979 melt season there was 17,000 km3. At the end of the 2013 melt season we were down to 5,000 km3. That's up from the three previous years but well within the normal range of variability. You can take a look here -

http://tinyurl.com/l8fznfw

The winter of 2012 was a cool one. One cooler winter does not global cooling. We would need a much larger number of data points to establish a trend.

You might want to read up on how the jet stream has changed and how that gives us some very different weather patterns.

Nov 09, 2013
socialists don't care about human life is simply silly.

Socialists support and promote murdering babies, mercy killings, death panels,...
a place run by a strongman government.

This is socialism, too.
Japan is a democracy.

So? Socialist states hold elections.
"In a more market-oriented country, of course, bankruptcy is exactly where Tepco would be headed. "
"Politicians understand that were Tepco to collapse, the government would be entirely on the hook for any compensation payouts for political, if not technically legal, reasons. "
http://online.wsj...02504630
Socialism is as socialism does.

Nov 09, 2013
"Europe's top energy companies warned that European Union policies favoring renewable energy production over fossil fuels could lead to blackouts across the continent. In Germany, lawmakers are wrestling with ways to scale back green-energy subsidies in order to lower prices for consumers — which are now among the highest in Europe. The German publication Der Spiegel even remarked that electricity had become a "luxury good" in the country."
"In the U.K., politicians and environmentalists have been successful in delaying hydraulic fracturing operations from developing the country's rich shale formations. The Brits are now paying the price of dithering and face skyrocketing gas prices. It's become so expensive to heat homes during the winter time it's estimated that more than 24,000 people will die from the cold this winter."

Read more: http://dailycalle...kCr7rFvC

Nov 09, 2013
"The Obama administration has also been issuing only about half the number of the drilling permits as the Clinton administration did, and Obama has issued a third less than the Bush administration. All in the name of environmental conservation.

While the administration has slowed its drilling leases, it has fast-tracked leases for more costly and less reliable renewable energy. Recently, the administration suffered embarrassment when no one bid on a lease offer to build solar panels on federal lands in Colorado."

Read more: http://dailycalle...kCrizZRC

Nov 09, 2013
"The Obama administration has also been issuing only about half the number of the drilling permits as the Clinton administration did, and Obama has issued a third less than the Bush administration. All in the name of environmental conservation.



And yet US oil and natural gas production is at record heights. Go figure.

Now, what the heck does that or your socialism stuff have to do with nuclear energy being too expensive to consider?

Nov 09, 2013
"Europe's top energy companies warned ... lead to blackouts.... In Germany, lawmakers are wrestling ... to lower prices for consumers — which are now among the highest in Europe.


But, in fact, renewables are making the grid more reliable in Germany.

"On Monday, Germany's Network Agency announced that the German grid only had a downtime of 15.31 minutes, even lower than the already impressive 17.44 minutes of downtime during the period from 2006 the 2010.

Not only did the country avoid a major blackout during the winter, but its availability actually increased over the average going back to 2006, when reporting began."

http://www.renewa...7/56183/

And the wholesale price of electricity has been dropping in Germany, thanks to renewables on their grid. Germany industrial wind prices have been dropping since 2009 and are lower than the EU27 average.

Nov 09, 2013
The Regulatory State (socialism) under BHO is intentionally killing coal with regulations. It is intentionally killing nuclear power with regulation.
The Fascist (socialist) BHO state showers plundered taxpayers wealth on favored industries and political cronies to keep the socialists in power.
It is impossible for socialists regimes to centrally plan anything because they cannot determine values.
As noted, businesses, even those who are crony capitalists, understand the value of stable, low cost power and don't trust govt regulators to keep a stable grid and low cost energy.

Nov 09, 2013
"German households face steeply rising electricity bills, companies threaten to move abroad, engineers raise the specter of blackouts. A reform of Germany's green energy revolution must top the new government's agenda."
"since the EEG law was implemented in 2000, German electricity retail prices have risen from then 14 eurocents per kilowatt-hour to almost 29 cents today, according to data released by the Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW)."
"Much of the increase is the result of a surcharge on electricity bills paid by private households and businesses to finance state subsidies for renewable energies. "
http://www.dw.de/...17066849

Nov 09, 2013
German industrial electricity prices -

http://epp.eurost...ten00114

Retail customers in Germany pay 8.0 euro cents for power generation, 6.5c for grid service and 5.3c for the renewable energy surcharge. The rest of their 29c/kWh price is non-utility taxes. Money we'd pay in income and other taxes.

The 19.8c (26 US cents) is not much higher that the cost of electricity in NY State. US utility bills usually include additional fees which would reduce the difference.

Germans pay their renewable subsidies as part of their electricity bills. We pay our with tax dollars. Additionally, while they profit from lower electricity costs German industry does not contribute to the renewable subsidy fund.


Nov 09, 2013
"In addition, the costs of massive infrastructure updates, which are needed to accommodate the vast amounts of green energy, are also footed by consumers through their electricity bills. This includes expanding the power grid as well as creating storage systems for solar and wind power."
http://www.dw.de/...17066849
"Pushing green energy legislation and establishing mandatory quotas for green energy have simply not been the competition and job growth miracles they were intended to be. Though Germany has actually an oversupply of power, consumers pay higher prices than ever."
"Germany's renewable energy producers enjoy a guaranteed minimum price for their energy. So they can successfully produce and sell it at a guaranteed price, regardless of what customers want." {aka socialism}
http://www.forbes...debacle/

Nov 09, 2013
"Many farmers and municipalities are producing green energy no one actually needs, but are entitled to sell it. In the end consumers have to pay for it. These policies caused a doubling of energy prices for German consumers over ten years."
"Consumers buying energy from legacy utility companies, such as coal or nuclear power producers, subsidize those who demand more expensive energy such as wind or solar power. Working-class families subsidize urban yuppies by paying for part of their energy bill. Green energy producers don't even need to worry whether anyone wants their energy, as legislation entitles them to feed in their energy into the grid."
http://www.forbes...debacle/

Nov 09, 2013
"top executives of companies that provide half of Europe's electricity production capacity on Friday called on politicians to end "distorting" subsidies for wind and solar power, saying the incentives have led to whopping bills for households and businesses and could cause continent-wide blackouts."
"Under the subsidy mechanisms, wind and solar power producers benefit from priority access to the grid and enjoy guaranteed prices. In France, for instance, even as wholesale prices hover around €40 ($54) a megawatt hour, windmill electricity goes at a minimum of €83 a megawatt hour, regardless of demand. The difference is charged to customers."
"Over the past four years, 51 gigawatts of gas-fired capacities have been idled across Europe, Mr. Mestrallet said. "
"Some fear that Europe is now ill-equipped to weather a cold spell. "
http://online.wsj...10803694

Nov 09, 2013
"wind turbines killed at least 600,000 -- and possibly as many as 900,000 -- bats in the United States in 2012, researchers say."
"Bats, which play an important role in the ecosystem as insect-eaters, are killed at wind turbines not only by collisions with moving turbine blades but also by the trauma resulting from sudden changes in air pressure that occur near a fast-moving blade, the study said.

Study author Mark Hayes of the University of Colorado notes that 600,000 is a conservative estimate -- the true number could be 50 percent higher than that -- and some areas of the country might experience much higher bat fatality rates at wind energy facilities than others."
http://www.breitb...-in-2012
Bats are ugly so 'liberals' don't care.

Nov 09, 2013
You certainly do get your information from interesting places. Forbes. Breitburt. Fox Business, er, WSJ.

Yes, transitioning from fossil fuels to renewables will cost. Transitioning to nuclear would cost more. And continuing to burn fossil fuels would be the most expensive of all.

Large penetration of wind and solar (<40%) will require storage. Nuclear requires storage at even lower penetration.

Yes, renewable are more expensive in France than is power from nuclear reactors built years ago and now paid off. Someone driving a paid off car spends less per month for commuting than someone with a car payment.

Yes, bat kills is a problem that will have to be addressed. Some is happening by learning bat migration patterns and turning off turbines during those 1-2 week periods. Also stopping turbines when wind speeds are low greatly cuts bat kills. At low wind speeds insects can fly, bats feed, and not much electricity is being generated.


Nov 10, 2013
Bob ryggie is an idiot who cannot rebut or answer a straight question, but instead copies a few keywords into his libertarian search engine and dredges up useless articles and libertarian propaganda or ideological manifestos. He then pulls one or two sockpuppets stuck to his penis and downvotes anyone with a coherent post. Answering his posts is an exercise in entropy: As futile as stopping the heat death of the universe

Nov 10, 2013
transitioning from fossil fuels to renewables will cost.

What centrally planned project like the forced conversion to renewable have ever succeeded?
The minor attempt in California in 2000 to re-regulate (it was NOT deregulation) the power grid led to massive brown-outs.
What will be the costs? There are the direct costs which have been noted and what is not known are the costs that will not be known. The lost innovation, the deaths from high energy costs, ....
Centrally planned socialist systems fail because they cannot respond rapidly to changes and the people suffer.

Nov 10, 2013
the whole field is very fluid

Yes.
What are ALL the real costs associated with every source of energy?
dj claims to want to be an objective scientist but quotes from a biased web site.
"If they have to pay a few cents more to protect the world's damaged environment they will regard it as a small price to pay. "
Read more at http://cleantechn...78Xf7.99
How many Brits will die this winter to save the world's environment? Socialists don't really care about the life of a human being.

Nov 10, 2013
"What are the actual costs to produce energy – not the fixed price, not the financing, not the tax breaks and subsidies, or the mandates, not all of the artificial add-ons that we demand in order to make someone rich or to fit into our economic model. These other costs are what go into calculating levelized costs, lossely defined as a break-even point for investors, utilities and consumers. "
"but the results are: 4.1 ¢/kWhr for coal, 5.2 ¢/kWhr for natural gas, 3.5 ¢/kWhr for nuclear, 4.3 ¢/kWhr for wind, 7.7 ¢/kWhr for solar, and 3.3 ¢/kWhr for hydro.

These costs are for the entire life-span of the units, after running them to death. These costs are separate from investments, taxation, subsidies, loan structure, and other costs that are associated more with pricing and financing than with what the actual costs are to produce that energy."
http://www.forbes...bsidies/

Nov 10, 2013
"Gas-fired generators are running at utilisation rates that are too low to meet their fixed costs as grids favour subsidized renewable power. About 60 per cent or 130,000 megawatts of Europe's gas-generation capacity is at risk of closing by 2016, it said, citing IHS Inc. (IHS) estimates."
""These plants -- that are indispensable to ensure security of supply during peak hours -- are being replaced by volatile and non-schedulable renewable energy installations that are heavily subsidized," according to the report, produced with Exane BNP Paribas, law firm CMS Bureau Francis Lefebvre Lyon SELAS and think tank VaasaETT. "
http://www.powere...ini.html

Nov 10, 2013
Thanks for the feedback on ryggesongn. I was wondering whether to respond to someone copying stuff from anti-science sites to a scientific site discussion board.


Nov 10, 2013
"wind turbines killed at least 600,000 -- and possibly as many as 900,000 -- bats in the United States in 2012, researchers say
-which is low compared to other artificial methods.

"[there is a] long history of bat fatalities due to collisions with communication towers, power lines, fences, lighthouses and tall buildings"

-But not many statistics. However, wind turbines kill

"roughly twice as many bats as birds."

-So if the ratio is even roughly comparable,

"Collisions with buildings kill 97 to 976 million birds annually; collisions with high-tension lines kill at least 130 million birds, perhaps more than 1 billion; collisions with communications towers kill between 4 and 5 million based on "conservative estimates," but could be as high as 50 million; cars may kill 80 million birds per year; and collisions with wind turbines killed an estimated 20,000 to 37,000 birds per year ..."

-Bat deaths by turbines is INSIGNIFICANT, as are bird deaths by turbines.

Nov 10, 2013
Plus as we know,the birthrate for a given species tends to fluctuate in conjunction with changes in predation, climate, food supply, etc. Bat repro rates would probably adjust, but of course scientists would have to study this.

Here are some interesting facts:

"taken together, fossil-fueled facilities are about 17 times more dangerous to birds [and I assume BATS as well] on a per GWh basis than wind and nuclear power stations. In absolute terms, wind turbines may have killed about 7000 birds in 2006 but fossil-fueled stations killed 14.5 million and nuclear power plants 327,000"

-And as we also know, power is not optional. So it is either/or. Either we build more wind farms and nukes or more furry and feathery creatures will DIE. Its your choice (no its not.)

Nov 10, 2013
Forbes is anti-science?
Anti-science is considered any article that does not support the current politically correct version of science?

Nov 10, 2013
Bat deaths are a problem. We should not overlook that. Bats are under a lot of pressure. Millions are dying each year from white nose disease.

Work is underway to better understand how to minimize bat deaths from wind turbines.

It will likely be impossible to totally eliminate bat and bird deaths from wind turbines, but per GWh of production turbines are much less damaging than coal and nuclear produced electricity. And we are reducing bird deaths from turbines.

In 2009 there were 12.5 bird kills per MW installed wind capacity.

In 2012 there were 9.5 bird kills per MW installed wind capacity.

That's a 24% decrease. A very major improvement in bird safety. And we aren't done yet.

http://www.abcbir...dex.html

Nov 10, 2013
Bats harbor pandemic viri like SARS and a new bat virus in China can infect people. Also animals adapt to human structures and are already growing in numbers from their nadir. Birds have already learned to avoid automobiles in six generations. It would be stupid to eliminate man's best hope for sustainability due to some short-term stressor. Nature imposes such stressors always and stressors usually improve diversity and robustness

Nov 10, 2013
"Many bats, and almost all in the United States, thrive on an insect diet. A single bat can eat up to 1,200 mosquito-sized insects every hour, and each bat usually eats 6,000 to 8,000 insects each night.Their appetite for mosquitoes certainly makes a backyard more comfortable. Bats are opportunistic, and their lack of discretion benefits everyone. Some of their favorite prey include crop-destroying moths, cucumber beetles, flies and gnats. Natural insect control is their specialty."
"Several characteristics of bats cause them to be vulnerable. First, they are slow at reproducing. Most give birth to only one pup a year, which means they cannot quickly rebuild their populations. Second, most bats roost in large colonies. Bats living in temperate climate zones hibernate in caves or mines during the winter."

Read more: http://www.mother...kHcP03rx
Bats can be sacrificed to the windmill gods?

Nov 10, 2013
Bats harbor pandemic viri like SARS and a new bat virus in China can infect people. Also animals adapt to human structures and are already growing in numbers from their nadir. Birds have already learned to avoid automobiles in six generations. It would be stupid to eliminate man's best hope for sustainability due to some short-term stressor. Nature imposes such stressors always and stressors usually improve diversity and robustness


Collisions with vehicles kill 380 million birds each year. (663x wind)

http://www.abcbir...dex.html

I wonder what the fatality rate was six generations back.
--

The only avoidance data I know of is that waterfowl are apparently shifting their flight patterns around offshore wind farms. I don't think there's enough data to prove that one way or another to date.


Nov 10, 2013
Environmentalists try to stop all sorts of projects they don't like claiming the project will kill some endangered living thing or that the living thing the new project will kill is vital for the environment.
But they don't care how many living things die for wind power or any of their favorite projects.

Nov 10, 2013
A 1 GW wind farm would require 500 2 MW turbines, 333 3 MW turbines, or 133 MW turbines.

No generating technology yields a 100% capacity factor. In 2011 CF for coal was 57.56%, petroleum 5.99%, natural gas 24.24%, nuclear 84.30%, and hydro 46.62%.

Nuclear CF was high because nuclear is the least dispatchable. Takes days to turn it on and off. Coal can be shut down/restarted in a few hours, NG is minutes to hours, hydro in seconds. Petroleum has a low CF because it is mostly standby emergency capacity.

Since electricity from paid off nuclear plants is fairly cheap and reactors are so slow to start and stop we generally leave them on and use other generation to fill in.

New wind farms are returning CF numbers in the 40s with some hitting 50%.

I assume you know the difference between CF and hours of production?


Nov 10, 2013
The turbines on wind farms use less than 2% of the area, so the "48,000 to 64,000 acres of land" number is meaningless.

In 2010, the US used 4,143 TWh (terawatt hours) of electricity. (11,300,000 MWh per day.)

It would take 375,415 3 MW turbines with an average CF of 43% to produce 4,143 TWh of electricity.

The footprint of a wind turbine is typically around 0.25 acres. This includes the tower foundation, roads, transmission and support structures. 375,415 turbines would require 93,854 acres or 147 square miles.

147 square miles is:

3.13 Disney Worlds.
6.5 Manhattan Islands.
39% of Los Angeles.
12% of Rhode Island.
0.7% of San Bernardino County, CA.
0.02% of Alaska.
0.004% of all US land area.

BTW, we are now testing 7.5 MW turbines. Land area doesn't increase much with increases in turbine size so we could cut land use in half if needed.

Of course no one suggests a 100% wind-fed grid. A mix of renewables minimizes storage needs.


Nov 10, 2013
Wind turbine syndrome has been thoroughly examined and found to be a false claim. There is nothing medically happening and no physical basis for wind turbine noise damage to humans. The noise levels produced, of all frequencies, is no greater and generally less than typical traffic noise experienced by city dwellers. And that is only if one is quite close.

It is quite possible that a small group of people are worrying themselves sick over nothing. A self-created psychological malady best treated by ceasing to listening to idiots and chilling out.


Nov 10, 2013
How long would it take to bring a GW of Nuclear on line?


Best time in China is about four years. Six to seven years is more the norm. Considerably longer in the West.

Olkiluoto 3 is looking like 11 to 13 years. Vogtle 3 just started construction in the spring and is already more than a year behind schedule.

Wind and solar farms have huge construction time advantages. Under 2 years for wind farms, sometimes less than 1 year. Solar farms are often built in well less than a year. Large projects can be brought on line in sections. That means that revenue can start flowing well before the project is complete. Quick builds means much less accumulated interest. And financing costs drive the cost of coal and nuclear very high since it takes so many years for construction.

Nov 10, 2013
See how it works Bob? Ryggy will tie up the thread for years - all with bullshit. If you are ready to spend your whole weekend in a pointless pissing match - give it a try Bob.


No, now that I've been alerted I'll make use of the name tags at the top of each comment and not bother reading his stuff. He who shall be ignored, to twist a phrase.

That "Brit's dying" stuff comes off a POS article that Forbes published. They blamed it on the cost of wind, not pointing out that people in the UK (IIRC) heat mostly with gas, not electricity and the price of NG has been rising rapidly.

I used to read Forbes for investment information. After Malcolm died and Steve took over the mag took a turn into la-la land, ran to the far right and started publishing crap. There's no way I would trust it for financial information any longer. The same goes for the WSJ after Murdoch bought it. If an owner/editor will lie about science then you can't trust them to not lie about investments.

Nov 10, 2013
8,000 to 64,000 acres of land (75 to 100 square miles).

How much copper wire is needed to connect all these windmills? Copper is quite expensive and burying the wire is not free.
POS article

"Last weekend, the head of the United Kingdom's second-largest energy supplier announced that the nation had barely 48 hours' worth of stored natural gas left to keep the population warm. "Our generating capacity has fallen so low that we can expect power cuts to begin at any time."

Why? Because instead of developing its vast natural gas resources to fuel gas-fired generators, Britain has been building wind turbines, which provide almost no electricity during frigid weather."
http://washington.../2525669
"National Grid admitted reserves of electricity could fall to wafer thin levels because a wave of coal-fired power plants have closed"
http://www.mirror...r-winter

Nov 10, 2013
"British Gas told cash-strapped customers to use less energy today as the supplier unveiled a "devastating" 9.2 per cent gas and electricity price hike that will push bills to record levels. "
"Chris Weston, British Gas managing director, said the cost of Government green subsidies and environmental programmes such as 'Eco' - free loft and cavity wall insulation - were to blame for almost half of the increase."
http://www.telegr...120.html

Nov 10, 2013
Bloomberg is a 'liberal':
""More than 50 percent of the bill European consumers are paying today has nothing to do with power generation and networks, and that's because of political decisions," said Iberdrola's Ignacio Galan. "That has already created a lot of distortions."

Energy bills rose 17 percent in four years for domestic consumers and 21 percent for industrial consumers, the utilities said today in the brochure. "
http://www.bloomb...say.html

Nov 10, 2013
"Wind and solar are most sensitive to prices of construction materials. As an example, a MW of installed capacity for wind requires 460 metric tons of steel and 870 m3 of concrete compared to the 98 metric tons of steel and 160 m3 of concrete for coal, and the even lower 40 metric tons of steel and 90 m3 of concrete for nuclear. Natural gas is the lowest of all, requiring a little over 3 metric tons of steel and 27 m3 of concrete per MW, the reason gas plants are the cheapest and easiest to build."
http://www.forbes...-wind/2/

Nov 10, 2013
How much copper wire is needed to connect all these windmills? Copper is quite expensive and burying the wire is not free.


Copper???
Aluminum is used for such transmission (and I am sure that this cost is in the Forbes figures on cost that you provided, which show wind as quite competitive on raw cost).

Nov 10, 2013
Birds adapting to civilization and automobiles:

http://rsbl.royal...20130417

Nov 10, 2013
How much copper wire is needed to connect all these windmills? Copper is quite expensive and burying the wire is not free.


Copper???
Aluminum is used for such transmission (and I am sure that this cost is in the Forbes figures on cost that you provided, which show wind as quite competitive on raw cost).


Whatever the cost of concrete and transmission wire and how much is used, wind is now selling in the US for 4 cents per kWh. That's competitive with new CCNG and much cheaper than new coal or nuclear.

With the rising price of NG wind will soon be our cheapest new capacity source. And solar is likely only short years from grabbing second place from NG. Solar in the sunny SW is almost tied with NG right now.

Nov 11, 2013
wind is now selling in the US for 4 cents per kWh.

How much is the subsidy?
"the Obama administration is so fixated on wind power that it recently gave a California-based wind company an exemption from prosecution if a turbine kills a California condor, one of the rarest birds in the world, with only around 400 alive today. "
"Consider that many wind companies do not have to make bird kill data public. The federal government has resisted releasing data under the absurd claim that doing so would divulge industry trade secrets. Furthermore, the industry has little incentive to publicize negative information about its bird kills, especially since the federal government has clearly indicated the industry has a free pass to kill birds."
"the president is giving wind firms a guaranteed buyer that is not known for hunting for the best prices – the federal government."
""Between fiscal years 2007 and 2010, annual wind subsidies grew from $476 million to nearly $5 billion.""
WSJ

Nov 11, 2013
"Wind power has two advantages. Green energy laws in many states require utilities to buy wind energy under long-term contracts as part of their clean-energy goals and take that power even when they don't need it. Wind farms also receive a federal tax credit of $22 for every megawatt-hour generated.

Thus, even when there is no demand for the power they produce, operators keep turbines spinning, sending their surplus to the grid because the tax credit assures them a profit. "
"Meanwhile, nuclear and coal plants must continue running even as this "negative pricing" dynamic forces them to pay grid operators to take the power they produce. "
"Prices for markets served by Exelon's Clinton and Quad Cities reactors trade below zero between 8 percent and 14 percent of off-peak hours, said Joseph Dominguez, Exelon's senior vice-president for governmental and regulatory affairs and public policy. "
http://www.bloomb...-prices-

Nov 11, 2013
"On windy days we have so much power that wind parks are asked to shut down, yet they get paid for the power they don't even deliver. And when the wind really blows, we 'sell' surplus power to neighboring countries at negative prices. And when the wind stops blowing and when there is no sun, we have to get our power from foreign countries. In the end we pay with the loss of high-paying industrial jobs because the high price of power is making us uncompetitive. "
"So the utilities are planning to close ten thousand Megawatts of fossil fuel plant capacity which are needed in the night and winter, when the sun is not shining, or when the wind is not blowing. Accordingly, the plan is to provide a capacity subsidy for the gas and coal plants. They would be paid for not producing when they are standing by." The lesson in all of this, he said, is "if you destroy the market by a subsidy, you then need another subsidy to keep the systems from breaking apart.""
Oh what a tangled web they weave.

Nov 11, 2013
""The Administration is clearly hand-picking which migratory bird mortality cases to pursue with an obvious preference to go after oil and gas producers," said Vitter. "For example, while three oil and gas companies faced criminal charges for killing birds, a wind energy company in California has reportedly been given a free pass to kill endangered condors and a Minnesota wind company has applied for permits to kill up to fifteen bald eagles. We obviously don't want to see indiscriminate killing of birds from any sort of energy production, yet the Administration's ridiculous inconsistencies begs questioning and clarity - clarity on why wind energy producers are let off the hook.""
http://www.epw.se...580a4672

Nov 11, 2013
" The CRS study concluded that crude oil development on federal lands dropped 7 percentage points between fiscal 2007-2012, even though total output rose by about 1.1 million barrels per day.

For natural gas, overall U.S. production increased 20 percent between fiscal 2008-2012 despite falling by one-third on federal lands.

Additionally, the report noted that in 2011 it took on average 307 days to get a drilling permit on federal lands. That was a 41 percent increase compared with 2006, it said. "
http://thehill.co...al-lands

Nov 11, 2013
"The EPA's New Source Performance Standard (NSPS), a proposed regulation for controlling carbon dioxide emissions, effectively bans coal from America's power portfolio. These ARBITRARY standards will deal a walloping blow to an industry that contributes nearly $100 billion to the U.S. economy, supports millions of jobs and generates 40 percent of the nation's electricity. "
"The EPA has chosen to stymie clean coal technology by setting emissions levels well below what is knowingly feasible for even the newest innovations in coal power plants, leaving many energy experts scratching their heads about the merits of such a policy. Even EPA's former air chief, Jeff Holmstead recently commented, "It's odd that [the EPA thinks] it's a good idea to ban new coal-fired power plants.""
" According to a recent Department of Energy (DOE) study, a coal plant built today with advanced coal technology emits on average 90 percent fewer pollutants than a plant that it replaces from the 1970s. "
Hill

Nov 11, 2013
Bob,


Looks to me as if Fukushima was under regulated. How did that work out?


How do you regulate against tidal waves? Are you saying natural disasters can be prevented by paperwork? I'm all ears...

Which safety regulations do you think we should remove in order to make nuclear energy less expensive?


The ones that won't even let you try to build a newer generation reactor. It's virtually impossible in this country. Once we can actually build them, THEN we can talk about specifics.

There's a large number of studies which show that it is entirely feasible to power our lives mainly with wind and solar. Storage would be needed. Other renewables make the job easier.


All those studies are fine, but there's one huge problem. What if their projections for our energy needs are off? They usually are especially from sites with an agenda :) What about 2100...3100? You do realize those gr