Skip to content

Delingpole: Donald Trump Is So Right to Wage War on Wind Farms…

May 13, 2017

By Paul Homewood

 

h/t Harry Passfield

 

 

There’s a good piece from Dellers at Breitbart:

 

 

image

But there’s a very powerful lobby which would like us to see wind turbines as being clean, eco-friendly and vital for the planet’s future. So if President Trump is to crush this bloated, parasitical industry as it deserves he’ll need some serious fire support.

This piece by Matt Ridley is a big help. It convincingly demonstrates that wind turbines are even more of a monstrous stupidity than any of us had hitherto imagined.

It starts with a quiz, whose answer may surprise you:

To the nearest whole number, what percentage of the world’s energy consumption was supplied by wind power in 2014, the last year for which there are reliable figures? Was it 20 per cent, 10 per cent or 5 per cent? None of the above: it was 0 per cent. That is to say, to the nearest whole number, there is still no wind power on Earth.

Yep. All those views blighted; all that wildlife sliced and diced; all those billions of dollars of subsidies wasted – in order to produce a form of power so inefficient and triflingly irrelevant that it still supplies not much more than 0 per cent of the world’s energy consumption.

This isn’t something you ever hear from renewables industry lobbyists who would like us to believe that wind is the future:

Nationwide, wind provided 5.6 percent of all electricity produced in 2016, an amount of electricity generation that has more than doubled since 2010. Much of the demand for new wind energy generation in recent years has come from Fortune 500 companies including Home Depot, GM, Walmart and Microsoft that are buying wind energy in large part for its low, stable cost.

But then, so many and varied are the half-truths, distractions and outright lies put out the wind industry that in any other sector half of these reptilian scumbags would be behind bars by now for selling a false prospectus.

One dirty trick – see that paragraph on US wind coverage above – is to talk about “electricity” rather than “energy.” Ridley points out the difference here:

From the International Energy Agency’s 2016 Key Renewables Trends, we can see that wind provided 0.46 per cent of global energy consumption in 2014, and solar and tide combined provided 0.35 per cent. Remember this is total energy, not just electricity, which is less than a fifth of all final energy, the rest being the solid, gaseous, and liquid fuels that do the heavy lifting for heat, transport and industry.

Another well-used cheat is to quote the fact that 14 per cent of the world’s energy is renewable – leading the unwary public to assume, incorrectly, that the majority of this must be the two renewables they must commonly hear about, wind and solar.

In fact the vast majority — three quarters — is biomass (mainly wood), and a very large part of that is ‘traditional biomass’; sticks and logs and dung burned by the poor in their homes to cook with. Those people need that energy, but they pay a big price in health problems caused by smoke inhalation.

Perhaps the biggest lie of all is that wind is now the cheapest form of energy.

As Paul Homewood explains in detail here, this is only plausible if you use Enron accounting techniques. If it were really true, though, then the wind industry would be able to survive without subsidies – which it won’t, can’t, and never will be able to unless, somehow, the laws of physics are radically altered. Wind, being intermittent, unpredictable, unreliable and limited in its intensity, was fine in the 17th century powering Dutch windmills to drain wetlands, but is next to useless meeting our rather more sophisticated energy needs in the 21st century.

And despite what its advocates claim, wind isn’t even “clean.”

Wind turbines, apart from the fibreglass blades, are made mostly of steel, with concrete bases. They need about 200 times as much material per unit of capacity as a modern combined cycle gas turbine. Steel is made with coal, not just to provide the heat for smelting ore, but to supply the carbon in the alloy. Cement is also often made using coal. The machinery of ‘clean’ renewables is the output of the fossil fuel economy, and largely the coal economy.

A two-megawatt wind turbine weighs about 250 tonnes, including the tower, nacelle, rotor and blades. Globally, it takes about half a tonne of coal to make a tonne of steel. Add another 25 tonnes of coal for making the cement and you’re talking 150 tonnes of coal per turbine. Now if we are to build 350,000 wind turbines a year (or a smaller number of bigger ones), just to keep up with increasing energy demand, that will require 50 million tonnes of coal a year. That’s about half the EU’s hard coal–mining output.

Industry experts sometimes privately admit that in the life of a wind turbine it will never manage to offset its own carbon footprint.

 

 

 

Read the rest here.

Advertisements
22 Comments
  1. Barbara Stockwell permalink
    May 13, 2017 11:57 pm

    I really love the quote that says wind machines in their lifetimes will never offset their own carbon footprint. It is a fact that their raw materials, manufacturing, installation, maintenance (oil, grease, etc.) all require fossil fuels. It takes real energy, dense reliable 24/7 energy to smelt iron ore, manufacture steel, cement, etc. What a joke renewables are. There is also the issue that worldwide a few years ago, the annual production from them was about 25% of the nameplate MWs. Solar is even less than that. There is the issue of night! and cloudy, stormy days. Cheap, reliable energy is the only way to help the poor have enough to eat, maintain economic productivity, and have the money to keep the environment clean. The renewable energy proponents are basically anti-human life on our beautiful planet. Yet we are the ones who appreciate it and are able to preserve and conserve. Thanks to fossil fuel use!

    • Bloke down the pub permalink
      May 14, 2017 10:27 am

      Pity that the link is broken.

  2. Broadlands permalink
    May 14, 2017 1:44 am

    Renewable biomass in… then that same biomass back out? Where is the reduction in atmospheric CO2… especially that reduction required by negative emission technologies to lower it back to 350 ppm? To the nearest round number what will that cost?

    Are some of us missing something in these seemingly smoke-and-mirror discussions?

    • May 14, 2017 9:12 am

      The reduction is supposed to be in the replacement trees absorbing carbon dioxide. But factor in the conversion to wood pellets, transport to distant countries etc. – does it add up? Probably not.

      • Broadlands permalink
        May 14, 2017 1:31 pm

        Replacement trees are not renewable biofuels. It is this latter “biomass” that does nothing to lower atmospheric CO2. And even with afforestation, negative emission technologies will be required to make any permanent lowering possible, especially a reduction of 50 ppm to take us back to 350 ppm. It sure doesn’t add up, except to astronomical costs.

    • May 14, 2017 12:39 pm

      “Are some of us missing something in these seemingly smoke-and-mirror discussions?”

      Faith, bro, faith!

  3. Graeme No.3 permalink
    May 14, 2017 4:59 am

    As more people have started to monitor output of wind “farms” in Australia it has become obvious that there are times when they supply negative electricity; i.e. they draw power from the grid, quite often when it is in short supply.

    I would point out that the nacelle is usually fibreglass construction, not that it affects the conclusions that these are a waste of money.

    • May 14, 2017 5:50 am

      The nacelle may be fibreglass, but the contents most certainly aren’t.

    • 1saveenergy permalink
      May 14, 2017 7:41 am

      fibreglass reinforcing manufacture is energy intensive (gas for heating ~73%, electric for processing ~24% )
      http://www.compositesworld.com/articles/the-making-of-glass-fiber
      https://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.php?id=12631

      The resins are derived from hydrocarbon feedstock.

      • Graeme No.3 permalink
        May 14, 2017 9:04 am

        Agreed and after 25 years in the FRP industry formulating and trouble shooting usage I am not defending its use. Indeed I have been maintainig for years, without anybody listening, that there is a limit to its use.
        Claims that turbines will get cheaper and their output are false. Already turbines are operating at 85-90% of the Betz limit, and stories that they only have to get bigger run into stress limits as the diameter of the blades increases. These are ‘thick’ aerofoils because of turbulence battering so are limited in tip speed, so higher diameters can only run at lower rpm hence lower efficiency. Yes, much more expensive materials can increase strength but not improve economics.
        Even without the difficulties of connection the whole idea is a waste of money.

  4. May 14, 2017 5:55 am

    I’ve been waging war on the wind industry for about ten years, with little success. The problem is not just the corrupt wind industry, it is the succession of ignorant and/or corrupt politicians and the useless media (such as the BBC) who support the corrupt industry with all the lies and propaganda.

    • May 14, 2017 9:41 am

      That is the key. No one disputes that if wind energy had been purely commercial it would have never left the drawing board. It has been the political ignorance, incompetence and out right corruption that has been at the hearth of this disaster. We won’t change it either until we find a way of making politian’s and senior civil servants personally accountable for these mistakes.

  5. Stonyground permalink
    May 14, 2017 6:26 am

    Sorry to be OT but has anyone seen today’s Dilbert Cartoon?

    http://dilbert.com/

    • Bloke down the pub permalink
      May 14, 2017 10:25 am

      Excellent

    • May 14, 2017 11:35 am

      Priceless and oh, so accurate about what is being done.

  6. May 14, 2017 7:07 am

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-nsU_DaIZE&t=54s
    Matt Ridley on How Fossil Fuels are Greening the Planet
    ~14% this last 30 years.

  7. May 14, 2017 8:02 am

    According to BP and numbers in Mtoe – I think Matt has got his numbers wrong, but not materially so.

    2014 global energy consumption 13021
    2014 global wind consumption 162 (1.2%)

    2015 global energy consumption 13147
    2015 global wind consumption 190 (1.5%)

    BP correctly adjust primary electricity up by 1/0.37 to account for thermal losses not incurred.

  8. May 14, 2017 8:10 am

    This may also be of interest:

    What does it take to substitute 4 GtC using low-C electricity?

    The short answer is 3,275,492 – 3 MW wind turbines. That takes emissions back to 1990 levels. The global economy probably back to 1890 levels

  9. May 14, 2017 8:43 am

    Reblogged this on ajmarciniak.

  10. FrankSW permalink
    May 14, 2017 3:01 pm

    I never realised that they included ‘traditional biomass’; sticks and logs and dung burned by the poor.

    Following on from their twisted logic vaping with it’s industrialized chemical extraction, the use of plastic and electronic imbibing equipment should be banned and instead we should all be encouraged to go green and continue to smoke those sticks of pure biomass that are even packaged within naturally grown CO2 deductable paper as well

    Smoke more, save the world

  11. waterside4 permalink
    May 15, 2017 8:03 am

    In order to have a good laugh at the innocence (deliberate fake news?), take look at two articles in the Sunday Telegraph business section 14/5/17.

    Both authored by some lassie I had not come across previously.

    She deals with the proposed socialist party energy caps proposed by Maggie May.
    Then on an inside page she is interviewing some guy who seems to suggest that by hooking up the millions of electric car batteries to the grid, all our energy problems will be solved.

    Seriously folks, I did not dream this – go and have a look.

    Sundaytelegraph.co.uk/business

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: