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Germany Desperate For Coal Power, As Wind & Solar Power Fail

February 13, 2021
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By Paul Homewood

 

 

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Germany’s held up as the world’s wind and solar capital. But, at the moment, the ‘green’ stuff can’t be purchased, at any price.

Its millions of solar panels are blanketed in snow and ice and breathless, freezing weather is encouraging its 30,000 wind turbines to do absolutely nothing, at all. [Note to Ed: don’t forget about the constant supply of electricity from the grid that these things chew up heating their internal workings so they don’t freeze up solid!]

So much for the ‘transition’ to an all wind and sun powered future – aka the ‘Energiewende’.

Despite being the object of consternation and much vilification over the last 20 years, Germany’s coal-fired plants are now being appreciated for what they are: truly meaningful power generation sources, available on demand, whatever the weather. With a Nationwide blackout a heartbeat away, the German obsession with unreliable wind and solar is like a time bomb set to explode.

NoTricksZone reports on Germany’s (needs driven) change of heart.

Berlin On The Brink! Winter Blackouts Loom As Coal Plants Run At 100% Capacity, Struggle To Keep Lights On In
No Tricks Zone
Pierre Gosselin
28 January 2021

Germany now finds itself in the dead of winter. Much of the country has seen considerable snowfall, meaning solar panels are often covered by snow and thus rendered useless. Even without snow cover, the weeks-long overcast sky prevents any noteworthy solar power generation.

Moreover, this winter there have been many long windless periods, and so Germany’s approx. 30,000 wind turbines have been largely out of operation. In a world 100% reliant on green energies, this would mean near 100% darkness at home.

Luckily Germany’s still existing coal and nuclear power infrastructure is (still) there to step in and keep the power on and the country running.

 https://stopthesethings.com/2021/02/09/coal-comfort-total-collapse-in-wind-solar-output-leaves-freezing-germans-desperate-for-coal-fired-power/

 

The figures speak for themselves. During the last four days, wind power has only supplied 15% of Germany’s electricity. Solar power is essentially a waste of space, running at 2%:

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http://energodock.com/germany/electricity-generation

 

Meanwhile coal and gas account for 56%, with nuclear bringing in another 13%. So far generation is just about keeping up with demand, which has peaked at 72 GW:

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Coal power capacity is about 42 GW, so there is still plenty of capacity to compensate when the nuclear power stations shut next year. But it will blow a massive hole in Germany’s climate targets.

39 Comments
  1. Patsy Lacey permalink
    February 13, 2021 7:11 pm

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/02/13/nord-stream-2-explodes-myth-merkel-moral-hero/
    Not exactly green either

    • paul weldon permalink
      February 13, 2021 10:05 pm

      The politics involved in this are unbelievable, with the Americans desperate to stop it as they consider it a threat to their security (or possibly want to sell more gas?) Through sanctions they have managed to stop completion for a year but now a Russian ship is laying the last few hundred kilometres Sanctions turn to any company involved in certificating the pipeline. The Norwegian firm involved has already backed out.

  2. John West permalink
    February 13, 2021 7:36 pm

    Interesting that Germany has a large proportion of generation from Lignite which is a very polluting fuel, far more so that hard coal.
    Paul, are you monitoring the adverts on TV and Radio for smart meters – they imply a smart meter will let you use more green energy, which is clearly not correct – the meter only meters what it passses. I have complained to the ASA and they say that smart metering GB has convinced them they are the right side of the line, but I have just complained again today as an advert I heard on Classic FM this evening blatantly says a smart meter will enable me to use more green energy. I await their reply with interest.

    • Graeme No.3 permalink
      February 13, 2021 8:56 pm

      The new German lignite stations are fairly efficient as they use the waste heat to dry out the lignite. CO2 emissions 800 v 700 (at best) for black coal. There may be an older black coal plant in the UK with higher figures.
      The 2 older lignite stations in Victoria run around 1100 to 1190, and the idiot politicians want to shut them down and rely on wind (because that would cut emissions by 30%) rather than up-grading them and getting 30% less emissions reliably.

      As for smart meters the claim is partially correct. Once the Green revolution arrives you will get a higher percentage of green energy, because you will be getting less electricity overall.

    • Curious George permalink
      February 13, 2021 11:40 pm

      The smart meter will cut your power off whenever there is less than 35% of green energy available. The cutoff margin may be adjusted lower for a small monthly fee.

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      February 14, 2021 1:55 am

      I suspect it is all supposedly linked in to the Octopus “Agile” tariff

      https://octopus.energy/agile/

      SMETS 2 meter required so they can meter half hourly. But the clever stuff is done in other ways – see the video at the link. There would be a strong incentive to avoid 35p/kWh peak rates. Cold dinners…

      There’s also the NG carbon intensity app that is supposed to get integrated into device controllers. NG have some weird ideas about pushing it…

      https://mobile.twitter.com/ng_eso/status/1357026062392119297

      What all the controlling devices cost will eat into the quoted savings.

    • Gerry, England permalink
      February 14, 2021 2:46 pm

      Yes, John my thoughts too on their TV advert. How can a dumb ‘smart’ meter affect the source of the electricity you use?

  3. John Palmer permalink
    February 13, 2021 7:40 pm

    Schadenfreude…. I think that it’s a German word……
    Ho, Ho, bl**dy Ho!
    That might be why Mutti is brown-nosing Mr Putin and his cronies right now…
    Enjoy the laughs whilst you can. We’ll be there soon enough, with Princess Nut Nuts & her NGO cronies seemingly running the show.🤬

    • Julian Flood permalink
      February 13, 2021 8:23 pm

      Num Nuts, please. It means someone who causes disaster wherever it goes.

      JF

  4. February 13, 2021 7:43 pm

    ‘But it will blow a massive hole in Germany’s climate targets.’

    Do we see an alarmist court case looming?

  5. Chris Matchette-Downes permalink
    February 13, 2021 7:52 pm

    Russia can help, it is used to cold and has lots of gas.

  6. markl permalink
    February 13, 2021 8:26 pm

    And it will only get worse. Cold related deaths should seal the deal.

    • Gamecock permalink
      February 13, 2021 9:43 pm

      Maybe not. True believers will come up with some symbol or compound German word to put on their gravestones to show that they were heroes of the state, dying for the cause.

  7. John Peter permalink
    February 13, 2021 8:49 pm

    I think the Germans will actually need a few shut-downs on a grand scale before they come out demanding a reversal back to dispatchable energy. That will be the turning point here as well. Power cuts and unpayable energy bills with much increased fuel powerty. Then it will be too late.

    • Gamecock permalink
      February 13, 2021 9:41 pm

      I have wondered how Net Zero will play out. It’s going to get absurder and absurder, but will the tipping point come so late, with so much momentum built up, that UK proceeds with it? Is that the Net Zeroists plan, to get everyone too deep into it to go back?

      • El Toro permalink
        February 14, 2021 9:45 am

        HS2, tunnel from Scotland to N Ireland…
        What do you think?

  8. Philip Mulholland permalink
    February 13, 2021 8:58 pm

    And we have still got to get through March yet.
    We are just past New Moon and the next lunar month is not looking good.

  9. Tonyb permalink
    February 13, 2021 9:01 pm

    We are very fortunate that our own freezing cold spell has been accompanied by high winds so at least that aspect is working even if solar isn’t. What happens when a cloudy windless high lands over us in a winter month?

    I would really like some grown up power stations but it takes years for nuclear to be built. Some years ago we tried to make coal acceptable by removing the co2 , I wonder if that could be resurrected as we still have lots of the stuff

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      February 14, 2021 2:12 am

      NG are boasting of a new wind generation record – enabled by a combination of higher demand from cold weather ensuring plenty of inertia providing generators were running, more capacity on stream, and working interconnectors including Western Link.

      https://mobile.twitter.com/ng_eso/status/1360623224304898054

    • February 14, 2021 10:41 am

      You mean like we have had in Norway for more than three weeks continuous and also is normal in the UK? Look at any metric, wind is not fit for purpose and solar in Northern Europe, well I will not dignify it with a response. The next question is, the people forcing this bullcrap on us AND taking away guaranteed supply are not stupid so what is going on? Are they all agents of some foreign malevolent power and if so can anyone guess who that could be?

      • Gerry, England permalink
        February 14, 2021 2:48 pm

        Does it start with a C? and end with ‘hina’?

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      February 14, 2021 12:51 pm

      You have to laugh at little Emily displaying her lack of basic knowledge and innumeracy

      https://mobile.twitter.com/emilygosden/status/1360890652519768064

      See where she asks if wind at 11 a.m. constitutes a record share, when it wasn’t a record output and is at a time of day when demand is only a little below peak levels.

  10. February 13, 2021 10:04 pm

    Serves them right, the silly Bs.
    Those of us who still maintain a modicum of common sense feel justified although the Greenies & Co have already squandered the money on the monstrous scam and a few of them have become very rich which does not do us any good now after the deed.

  11. February 14, 2021 10:36 am

    Well! WHO could have predicted that outcome? !!!!

    • Phillip Bratby permalink
      February 14, 2021 10:58 am

      Surely all those retired and independent power engineers cannot have been correct all along! Surely those elite politicians with their “experts” know better.

  12. Hugh Sharman permalink
    February 14, 2021 2:41 pm

    By the end of 2022, all 8 GW of Germany’s remaining nuclear fleet must have been decommissioned by law. https://www.dw.com/en/germany-shuts-down-atomic-plant-as-nuclear-phase-out-enters-final-stretch/a-51845616

    Germany will then be transformed from the current situation of being second only to France as Europe’s largest electricity exporters to one of its largest importers. Belgium will shortly decommission its already failing nuclear fleet.

    How UK, second only to Italy as the EU’s largest electricity importer, will fare is a very moot point.

    Can some one, any one, please tell me where I am wrong?

  13. Hugh Sharman permalink
    February 14, 2021 2:44 pm

    Maybe, by the end of 2022, catastrophic global warming will have abolished these pesky, month long anticyclones for ever?

  14. davidnw8 permalink
    February 14, 2021 4:47 pm

    I was going to leave a comment and refer to Jordan Peterson’s wonderful response to, as he put it, ‘such low-resolution thinking’; but then I thought what the f*** is the point. No one in power listens and our position is so fragmented and unco-ordinated that we’ve lost before we begin. There is no point in trying to convince a hard-core climate activist that they are wrong, why? Because they already know they are wrong and don’t care. They knew they were wrong from the start, they have a different end-game in sight and they don’t need to be right to reach it. Somehow we have to get together and it doesn’t matter on whose web-site it is, this one is as good as any other.
    So, Mr Homewood, can we organize in a way that takes on this massive rollercoaster of nonsense?

    • Hugh Sharman permalink
      February 14, 2021 5:05 pm

      My sentiments exactly, davidnw8!

  15. A Blackburn permalink
    February 15, 2021 2:22 pm

    And it’s not just Germany. Apparently wind turbines in Texas don’t work when it gets cold!
    https://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN2AF066?utm_medium=Social&utm_source=twitter

    • John Carver permalink
      February 16, 2021 5:16 pm

      Yes, if they aren’t equipped with cold-weather gear, that can happen.

  16. Jose permalink
    February 15, 2021 5:30 pm

    Great go green go dark and really cold but if your woke enough your faults facts should keep you warm and enlightened. 😂😂😂😂

  17. Jan Hemmer permalink
    February 15, 2021 6:44 pm

    I was wondering about solar and wind in Germany under the current conditions.
    Googled it – absolutely nothing to find.
    Installed Duckduckgo and there you were.
    Something really sinister is going on at Google.
    Will never use it again.

  18. Ajantha permalink
    February 15, 2021 10:47 pm

    This is a learning curve. Moving forward it could be better stated as requiring a diversification of power sources & planning. It is not a ‘failure’ of green energy. It is an alarming indicator of climate change. It might be a stark reminder of over-reliance on any one source.
    We need to continue to applaud Germany’s courage and initiatives! Keep working on improving technology for green energy . It can be done!

    it

  19. avro607 permalink
    February 16, 2021 7:24 pm

    Exactly what is the climate change that you have seen.Weather patterns can change on a daily basis,but here in the UK,we live in a Temperate climate ,and have done for millennia.
    We have not moved North to the Arctic,and neither have we moved to the Mediterranean climate.We are stuck in the middle.
    Where on Earth do you live?

  20. kathrynporter26 permalink
    February 17, 2021 6:00 pm

    It’s worth adding a chart on German CO2 emissions which have risen alongside the deployment of renewables because of the counter-productive decision to exit nuclear. Deciding to close the nuclear fleet in the wake of Fukushima (a failure to understand logarithmic scales if ever there was one) tied the Germans to lignite for the forseeable future. That and the fact lignite mining employs a lot of people so there are also labour considerations. Germany is an interesting case study, but not an example to anyone.

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