Donald Trump….Too Smart to Fall for the Wind/Climate Scam!

Donald Trump Would Unleash Energy Sector

Say what you want about Donald Trump, but he has said two things recently that more profoundly diagnose America’s true problems than anything Hillary Clinton has even come close to thinking about in her entire lifetime.

Donald Trump Would Unleash Energy Sector
By Steve Milloy
Breitbart.com, August 9, 2016

Say what you want about Donald Trump, but he has said two things recently that more profoundly diagnose America’s true problems than anything Hillary Clinton has even come close to thinking about in her entire lifetime
The first thing he said — that political correctness “cripples our ability to talk and think and act clearly” — is not the subject of this column. The second — that “It is time to remove the anchor that is dragging us down” — is.

The “anchor” he was talking about is the government and, especially the Obama administration and any extension thereof through Hillary Clinton.

We have a government that is choking us to death with regulations and economy killing policies. As Trump pointed out:

The Federal Register is now over 80,000 pages long. As the Wall Street Journal noted, President Obama has issued close to four hundred new major regulations since taking office, each with a cost to the American economy of $100 million or more.

In 2015 alone, the Obama Administration unilaterally issued more than 2,000 new regulations – each a hidden tax on American consumers, and a massive lead weight on the American economy.

Nowhere is this truer than in the energy sector Trump spotlighted in his speech in Detroit. But to appreciate Trump’s prescription for the energy sector and the rest of the economy, it’s first necessary to understand how the Obama administration has sabotaged both.

Probably the least talked about effect of Obama’s anti-economic policies has been the destruction of the economic model for the electric power industry. Electric utilities used to make money the old fashioned way — by selling more electricity. For a variety of reasons, that has not been possible in the moribund Obama economy.

Instead utilities have been forced to engage in various government-mandated energy efficiency and green power schemes where utilities can only make more money by selling less electricity at higher prices. Flattened electricity production by utilities has then had downstream effects on fuel production industries.

Lower fuel needs has forced down coal prices and caused overproduction in a coal industry that has become increasingly efficient over the years at producing coal.

The Obama administration then compounded this problem for the coal industry by commencing its infamous war on coal. This has had the effect of forcing utilities to choose either to endure high regulatory compliance costs and political disfavor by sticking with coal or to switch to alternatives like natural gas, wind and solar. While the Obama administration favored the later two energy sources, the markets tossed a monkey wrench in these plans.

A glut of cheap natural gas produced by hydrofracturing technology (fracking) eased the coal-switching problem for utilities. Making progressive lemonade out of lemons, at this point the Obama administration then decided to finish off the coal industry by making the permanent the glut of cheap natural gas. It did this by slow-walking if not just simply preventing natural gas from being exported to a global market hungry for it.

The effect was two-fold. First, it forced most of the coal industry into bankruptcy. Second, it kept gas prices depressed. If an oil and gas firm is not struggling today, it’s probably only because it has gone into bankruptcy, too. And it you’re thinking that cheap fuel prices must have been good for electric utilities, think again. Midwestern utilities were hoping that the cheap fuel glut would lead to a renaissance of manufacturing in the Rust Belt, facilities to which they could sell more electricity. But regulatory uncertainty brought about overzealous and arbitrary Obama administration agencies and actions has prevented any such renaissance.

A President Trump would remove the government boot from the energy industry. Natural gas could be exported to a gas-hungry world. This would relieve pressure on what’s left of the coal industry. Then, unburdening utilities of regulatory and political pressure to use politically correct fuels and allowing utilities to sell more electricity to a growing economy would restore health to the ailing energy sector and help create millions of good-paying, wealth producing jobs.

All this is complex and difficult to explain in a brief column, let alone a policy speech by a candidate who is more of a business-doer than a political-talker. But Trump gets the big picture. Overregulation is killing our economy. The energy sector is living (on life support) proof.

Steve Milloy publishes JunkScience.com and is a former coal executive.

A Breakdown on How Badly the Wind Fiasco is Hurting us…Financially.

Ontario electricity has never been cheaper, but bills have never been higher

The province signed long-term contracts with a handful of lucky firms, guaranteeing them 13.5 cents per kWh for electricity produced from wind, and even more from solar.

Tyler Brownbridge / Postmedia News files
 
The province signed long-term contracts with a handful of lucky firms, guaranteeing them 13.5 cents per kWh for electricity produced from wind, and even more from solar.  The more the wind blows, the bigger the losses and the higher the hit to consumers.

You may be surprised to learn that electricity is now cheaper to generate in Ontario than it has been for decades. The wholesale price, called the Hourly Ontario Electricity Price or HOEP, used to bounce around between five and eight cents per kilowatt hour (kWh), but over the last decade, thanks in large part to the shale gas revolution, it has trended down to below three cents, and on a typical day is now as low as two cents per kWh. Good news, right?

It would be, except that this is Ontario. A hidden tax on Ontario’s electricity has pushed the actual purchase price in the opposite direction, to the highest it’s ever been. The tax, called the Global Adjustment (GA), is levied on electricity purchases to cover a massive provincial slush fund for green energy, conservation programs, nuclear plant repairs and other central planning boondoggles. As these spending commitments soar, so does the GA.

In the latter part of the last decade when the HOEP was around five cents per kWh and the government had not yet begun tinkering, the GA was negligible, so it hardly affected the price. In 2009, when the Green Energy Act kicked in with massive revenue guarantees for wind and solar generators, the GA jumped to about 3.5 cents per kWh, and has been trending up since — now it is regularly above 9.5 cents. In April it even topped 11 cents, triple the average HOEP.

So while the marginal production cost for generation is the lowest in decades, electricity bills have never been higher. And the way the system is structured, costs will keep rising.

The province signed long-term contracts with a handful of lucky firms, guaranteeing them 13.5 cents per kWh for electricity produced from wind, and even more from solar. Obviously, if the wholesale price is around 2.5 cents, and the wind turbines are guaranteed 13.5 cents, someone has to kick in 11 cents to make up the difference. That’s where the GA comes in. The more the wind blows, and the more turbines get built, the bigger the losses and the higher the GA.

Just to make the story more exquisitely painful, if the HOEP goes down further, for instance through technological innovation, power rates won’t go down. A drop in the HOEP widens the gap between the market price and the wind farm’s guaranteed price, which means the GA has to go up to cover the losses.

Ontario’s policy disaster goes many layers further. If people conserve power and demand drops, the GA per kWh goes up, so if everyone tries to save money by cutting usage, the price will just increase, defeating the effort. Nor do Ontarians benefit through exports. Because the renewables sector is guaranteed the sale, Ontario often ends up exporting surplus power at a loss.

The story only gets worse if you try to find any benefits from all this spending. Ontario doesn’t get more electricity than before, it gets less.

Despite the hype, all this tinkering produced no special environmental benefits. The province said it needed to close its coal-fired power plants to reduce air pollution. But prior to 2005, these plants were responsible for less than two per cent of annual fine particulate emissions in Ontario, about the same as meat packing plants, and far less than construction or agriculture. Moreover, engineering studies showed that improvements in air quality equivalent to shutting the plants down could be obtained by simply completing the pollution control retrofit then underway, and at a fraction of the cost. Greenhouse gas emissions could have been netted to zero by purchasing carbon credits on the open market, again at a fraction of the cost. The environmental benefits exist only in provincial propaganda.

And on the subject of environmental protection, mention must be made of the ruin of so many scenic vistas in the province, especially long stretches of the Great Lakes shores, the once-pristine recreational areas of the central highlands, and the formerly pastoral landscapes of the southwestern farmlands; and we have not even mentioned yet the well-documented ordeal for people living with the noise and disturbance of wind turbines in their backyards. We will look in vain for benefits in Ontario even remotely commensurate to the damage that has been done.

The province likes to defend its disastrous electricity policy by saying it did it for the children. These are the same children who are now watching their parents struggle with unaffordable utility bills. And who in a few years will enter the workforce and discover how hard it has become to get full time jobs amid a shrinking industrial job market.

Electricity is cheaper to make than it’s been for a generation, yet Ontarians are paying more than ever. About the only upside is that nine other provinces now have a handbook on what not to do with their electricity sector.

Ross McKitrick, Professor of Economics at University of Guelph, is Research Chair, Frontier Centre for Public Policy.

Rural Ontarians Hurt the Most in Wynne’s Energy Fiasco!

 

WATCH ABOVE: If you live in Ontario and you think our hydro bill is a bit high, you’re not alone. The province has some of the highest electricity rates in the country and rural areas are the hardest hit by the rising costs. As Jacques Bourbeau, it means some customers have to choose between paying for power and food for the family.

So-called “energy poverty” is getting worse in rural Ontario, a Global News investigation has found, with even small households paying hundreds of dollars a month to keep the lights on.

Officials, residents and experts are all sounding the alarm after electricity rates in the province rose 100 per cent in the past decade.

A range of factors are fueling the increases, including subsidies for clean energy, dealing with aging nuclear plants and maintaining and modernizing the province’s vast transmission and distribution system. But the problem is especially acute in rural Ontario, where steep delivery charges are the norm.

“The worst affected are customers in rural Ontario,” said energy analyst Tom Adams. “Compared to the ordinary urban household, the delivery charge alone is usually two to three times higher.”

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Ontario’s rising electricity costs putting squeeze on big business


Fay Knox knows what it’s like to live off the grid. Unable to cope with rising power rates, she has been disconnected twice because she couldn’t pay her hydro bills.

She lives by herself in a small house in the Eastern Ontario town of Lancaster, but her electricity bills run into the hundreds of dollars.

For the month of March 2016, it was $299.67. Knox, who receives a disability pension, says she simply can’t afford to keep her lights on.

“I could pay my hydro bill (20 years ago),” she said. “I was a single mother making $4 an hour raising two boys. Paying a mortgage. And you could pay your hydro. You can’t pay your hydro anymore.”

Ontario Progressive Conservative energy critic John Yakabuski said he was recently speaking to a volunteer at a food bank in the Ottawa Valley town of Eganville, who told him that most of the food bank’s new clients were people who had to make a choice between paying their hydro bill and avoiding a disconnection fee, or buying groceries.

“So they chose to maintain their hydro, but were now becoming clients of the food bank.”

WATCH: The roadmap to renewable energy in Canada

Jennifer Shaver is in a similar situation to Knox. She lives in Oxford Station, just outside of Ottawa, and she is on a constant crusade to cut her power consumption.

She shuts off her water heater during the day, hangs out all her laundry and her air conditioner is never turned on. The dishwasher only runs at night.

Despite her strict conservation measures, her monthly bills have been creeping up to more than $300 a month.

“With what’s been happening with Hydro we could be paying $500 a month easy here,” Shaver told Global News. “And that’s not going to work for us. And I don’t know what to do.”

She said she regularly falls behind on paying the bills, and a hydro crew recently disconnected power to her house. Her parents lent her the money to pay the $600 bill, and her power was eventually restored.

Government ‘taking significant steps’

Ontario’s new Energy Minister, Glenn Thibeault, said he’s still learning the ropes in his new job, so the man who used to hold the position, Bob Chiarelli, addressed the issue instead.

He expressed some sympathy to the plight of rural hydro customers.

“Yes there are pressures on rural customers,” Chiarelli acknowledged. “We are taking some significant steps to ameliorate those and we’ve made some significant progress.”

READ MORE: Ontario electricity rates set to surge again on May 1

That help includes the Ontario Electricity Support Program that offers low-income Ontarians a monthly credit on their bill of up to $50. There is also the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP), that will provide up to $600 in emergency assistance to people who are struggling to pay their hydro bill.

But energy analyst Adams says despite this help, a crisis is brewing.

“Electricity costs are becoming a housing problem. Some people are saying now they can’t afford to stay in their home because of their power bills. I find that … shocking.”

How many people are living in the dark?

Hydro One is the utility that delivers electricity to much of rural Ontario. The company refused to provide the number of people who have been disconnected each year for the past 10 years because of non-payment of their bills.

A similar request for the number of notices sent out to customers warning them their power could be disconnected because of arrears was also denied. Laura Cooke, Hydro One’s Senior Vice-President of Customer and Corporate Relations, did tell Global News she has reviewed the data and she did not see an “appreciable difference” in the year-over-year numbers.

But Cooke refused to provide data to back up that assertion.

“I am shocked that they would not divulge that information,” PC energy critic Yakabuski told Global News. “That is now being cloaked in a veil of secrecy when it comes to how they do business.”

However, there is some publicly available data that indicate the problem may be getting worse. In a two-year period (2013-2014) the number of people who applied to the LEAP program for financial help to pay their electricity bill shot up by 20 per cent. The amount of money paid out by the fund also jumped by the same amount.

Officials in a number of rural townships said the number of people seeking help through the Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative is on the rise. Renfrew County, west of Ottawa, doubled the amount of assistance it handed out last year.

Meanwhile, Fay Knox is once again hundreds of dollars behind on her hydro bill. The stress of not knowing when she will be living in the dark is taking its toll.

“My nerves are shot. Blood pressure is through the roof. I don’t think in Ontario that we should have to live like this. And it’s getting worse.”

© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

The Windscam, built on O.P.M….

US Wind Industry ‘Built’ on $176 Billion of Other Peoples’ Money

burning-dollar

If recycling is an environmental ‘good’, then the wind industry can proudly wear its ability to recycle hundreds of $Billions of other peoples’ money as a badge of honour.

Take a product which – as it can only ever be delivered at crazy random intervals and can’t be economically stored – has NO commercial valueand you’ll tend to find willing buyers few and far between.

In Australia’s wind power capital, South Australia, thanks to REC subsidies worth more than double what conventional power costs to produce, wind power outfits actually pay the grid manager (up to $20 per MWh) to take their skittish wares (see our post here). That market perversity has left SA with the highest retail power prices in Australia (by a factor of 2) and a grid on the brink of collapse (see our post here).

But the wind industry’s ‘recycling’ efforts can only take effect where the useful idiots that pretend to govern us enshrine massive subsidy schemes as ‘immutable’ laws, that must necessarily outlast religion: even the merest hint of threat to which kills ‘investment’ in wind power stone dead (see our post here).

The cost of feeding the subsidy-sucking freak that is the wind industry has already cost taxpayers and power consumers hundreds of $Billions around the Globe; and, as Robert Bryce spells out, will – if left unchecked – cost Americans hundreds of $Billions more.

Wind-Energy Sector Gets $176 Billion Worth of Crony Capitalism
National Review
Robert Bryce
6 June 2016

It takes enormous amounts of taxpayer cash to make wind energy seem affordable.

Last month, during its annual conference, the American Wind Energy Association issued a press release trumpeting the growth of wind-energy capacity. It quoted the association’s CEO, Tom Kiernan, who declared that the wind business is “an American success story.”

There’s no doubt that wind-energy capacity has grown substantially in recent years. But that growth has been fueled not by consumer demand, but by billions of dollars’ worth of taxpayer money. According to data from Subsidy Tracker — a database maintained by Good Jobs First, a Washington, D.C.–based organization that promotes “corporate and government accountability in economic development and smart growth for working families” — the total value of the subsidies given to the biggest players in the U.S. wind industry is now $176 billion.

That sum includes all local, state, and federal subsidies as well as federal loans and loan guarantees received by companies on the American Wind Energy Association’s board of directors since 2000. (Most of the federal grants have been awarded since 2007.)

Of the $176 billion provided to the wind-energy sector, $2.9 billion came from local and state governments; $9.4 billion came from federal grants and tax credits; and $163.9 billion was provided in the form of federal loans or loan guarantees.

General Electric — the biggest wind-turbine maker in North America — has a seat on AWEA’s board. It has received $1.6 billion in local, state, and federal subsidies and $159 billion in federal loans and loan guarantees. (It’s worth noting that General Electric got into the wind business in 2002 after it bought Enron Wind, a company that helped pioneer the art of renewable-energy rent-seeking.)

NextEra Energy, the largest wind-energy producer in the U.S., has received about 50 grants and tax credits from local, state, and federal entities as well as federal loans and loan guarantees worth $5.5 billion.

That’s more than what the veteran crony capitalist Elon Musk has garnered. Last year the Los Angeles Times’s Jerry Hirsch reported that Musk’s companies — Tesla Motors, Solar City, and Space Exploration Technologies — have collected subsidies worth $4.9 billion. NextEra’s haul is also more than what was collected by such energy giants as BP ($315 million) and Chevron ($2.2 billion).

About $6.8 billion in subsidies, loans, and loan guarantees went to foreign corporations, including Iberdrola, Siemens, and E.On. Those three companies, and five other foreign companies, have seats on AWEA’s board of directors.

Many of the companies on the AWEA board will be collecting even more federal subsidies over the next few years. In December, the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that the latest renewal of the production tax credit will cost U.S. taxpayers about $3.1 billion per year from now until 2019. That subsidy pays wind-energy companies $23 for each megawatt-hour of electricity they produce.

That’s an astounding level of subsidy. In 2014 and 2015, according to the Energy Information Administration, during times of peak demand, the average wholesale price of electricity was about $50 per megawatt-hour.

Last winter in Texas, peak wholesale electricity prices averaged $21 per megawatt hour. Thus, on the national level, wind-energy subsidies are worth nearly half the cost of wholesale power, and in the Texas market, those subsidies can actually exceed the wholesale price of electricity.

Of course, wind-energy boosters like to claim that the oil-and-gas sector gets favorable tax treatment, too. That may be so, but those tax advantages are tiny when compared with the federal gravy being ladled on wind companies.

Recall that the production tax credit is $23 per megawatt-hour. A megawatt-hour of electricity contains 3.4 million Btu. That means wind-energy producers are getting a subsidy of $6.76 per million Btu. The current spot price of natural gas is about $2.40 per million Btu. Thus, on an energy-equivalent basis, wind energy’s subsidy is nearly three times the current market price of natural gas.

MidAmerican Energy Company, a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, has a seat on AWEA’s board. Berkshire’s subsidy total: $1.5 billion — and it’s primed to collect lots more.

In April, the company announced plans to spend $3.6 billion on wind projects in Iowa. Two years ago, Berkshire’s CEO, Warren Buffett, explained why his companies are in the wind business. “We get a tax credit if we build a lot of wind farms. That’s the only reason to build them,” he said. “They don’t make sense without the tax credit.”

Keep in mind that the $176 billion figure in wind-energy subsidies is a minimum number. It counts only subsidies given to companies on AWEA’s board.

Not counted are subsidies handed out to companies like Google, which got part of a $490 million federal cash grant for investing in an Oregon wind project. Nor does it include the $1.5 billion in subsidies given to SunEdison, the now-bankrupt company that used to have a seat on AWEA’s board. (To download the full list of subsidies garnered by AWEA’s board members, click here.)

Nor does that figure include federal money given to J. P. Morgan and Bank of America, both of which have a seat on AWEA’s board. The two banks received federal loans or loan guarantees worth $1.29 trillion and $3.49 trillion, respectively.

In an e-mail, Phil Mattera, the research director for Good Jobs First, told me that the loan and loan-guarantee figures for the banks include the federal bailout package known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program as well as “programs instituted by the Federal Reserve in the wake of the financial meltdown.”

When all of the subsidies, loans, and loan guarantees given to the companies on AWEA’s board are counted, the grand total comes to a staggering $5.1 trillion.

According to Wikipedia, crony capitalism “may be exhibited by favoritism in the distribution of legal permits, government grants, special tax breaks, or other forms of state interventionism.” Wind-energy companies are getting favoritism on every count.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wants to give those companies permits allowing them to legally kill bald and golden eagles with their turbines for up to 30 years.

The industry is getting grants, tax breaks, and loans worth billions. And thanks to federal mandates like the Clean Power Plan and state renewable-energy requirements — nearly all of which are predicated on the specious claim that paving vast swaths of the countryside with wind turbines is going to save us from catastrophic climate change — the industry is surfing a wave of state interventionism.

AWEA’s Kiernan likely has it right. In a country where having a profitable business increasingly requires getting favors from government, the U.S. wind industry is definitely a “success.”
National Review

other peoples money

Wind Turbines Do NOT Reduce CO2….

Trillion Dollar Irony: Europe’s Wind Rush Sends CO2 Emissions Soaring

chicken-little-poster

If “saving” the planet is – as we are repeatedly told – all about reducing man-made emissions of an odourless, colourless, naturally occurring trace gas, essential for all life on earth – then European energy/environmental policy has manifestly failed. And what an expensive failure it is.

In the following piece, the delicious term ‘irony’ springs to mind: a situation in which something which was intended to have a particular result has the opposite or a very different result.

The wind cult’s defence for crushing entire industries and whole economies, driving thousands insane with incessant turbine generatedlow-frequency noise and infrasound, and for the slaughter of millions ofbirds and bats has run out of puff: CO2 emissions are rising fastest in those places, like Europe, that have literally thrown $billions to the wind.

Europe’s CO2 Emissions INCREASE While America’s Fall
Andrew Follett
Daily Caller
21 May 2016

The EU’s 2015 CO2 emissions increased by 0.7 percent relative to 2014, while U.S. emissions fell to its lowest level in two decades. The EU has spent an estimated $1.2 trillion financially supporting wind, solar and bio-energy and an incalculable amount on a cap-and-trade scheme to specifically lower CO2 emissions.

The DCNF analyzed the increased CO2 emissions data from the the European Commission through Eurostat and CO2 emissions from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) of the last full year of state-level data. The use of older U.S. data predates much of the fracking boom, meaning an updated result would likely be even more significant.

The DCNF’s findings are displayed on the maps below.

1CO2-Decline-Europe-620x479

The biggest CO2 percent increases in Europe occurred in Slovakia and Portugal, where emissions rose by 9.5 and 8.6 percent respectively. Other big CO2 increases came from the EU’s capital country of Belgium, where emissions rose by 4.7 percent. Emissions from Germany, the EU’s largest economy, remained mostly flat.

The largest CO2 percent decrease in the EU came from the tiny country of Malta, where emissions fell by about 27 percent.

2CO2-Decline-USA-1-620x479

The DCNF’s analysis found that a majority of U.S. states, especially on the East Coast, saw CO2 emissions fall by more than 10 percent.

America’s overall CO2 emissions have fallen by 12 percent since their peak in 2000, according to the EIA. The U.S. has reduced greenhouse gas emissions more than any other country, a fact even The Sierra Club acknowledges.

EU emissions are increasing even though it implemented a cap-and-trade system called the European Union Emission Trading Scheme. The program directly cost the European countries $287 billion to implement in 2011 and likely caused trillions of dollars in lost economic output.

Even worse, the scheme is widely acknowledge to have not worked, as CO2 emissions actually increased, according to a study by the Swiss banking firm UBS.

A similar scheme planned for America would have destroyed 2.5 million jobs and lost $9.4 trillion of economic output by 2035 if implemented,according to analysis by The Heritage Foundation.

Rising European CO2 emissions are likely due to failed EU policies, which actually increased emissions.

A study last month by environmental group Transport & Environment (T&E) determined the EU’s plans to fight global warming with biofuel actually ended up increasing CO2 emissions.

The U.S. spends far less than the EU supporting green energy, discounting the cap-and-trade schemes, but American CO2 emissions are falling thanks to the development of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which the EU has repeatedly slowed with regulations.

The EU has spent $1.2 trillion subsidizing green energy. EU regulations, financial support for green energy and taxes cause the average European to spend 26.9 cents per kilowatt-hour on electricity, according to calculations performed earlier this month by The DCNF. The average American only spends 10.4 cents.

The DCNF’s analysis concurs with a report published in early May by the EIA, which found the primary reason for the decline in CO2 emissions is increased natural gas production from fracking.

Fracked natural gas supplies much of the power in East Coast states, which saw CO2 emissions most rapidly fall. Previous analysis by TheDCNFfound a statistically significant correlation between the dependence of a state’s economy on natural gas and large reductions in CO2 emissions.

Natural gas emits about half the CO2 of coal power and is already cheaper than coal in many locations due to fracking. The EIA estimates roughly 68 percent of the falling CO2 emissions are due to the switch from coal to natural gas.

Fracking has cut more American CO2 emissions than solar or wind power, according to a study published last November by the Manhattan Institute. The study shows solar power is responsible for a mere one percent of the decline in American CO2 emissions, while natural gas is responsible for nearly 20 percent. For every ton of CO2 cut by solar power, fracking has cut 13 tons.
Daily Caller

coal-seam-gas

Time for Windweasels to Pay for their Crimes!

The Great British Wind Farm Scandal: These Are The Heads That Should Roll

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Regular readers may be aware that I am not a fan of wind farms.

This is because, among other things, they kill birds and bats, hurt the environment, cause sleeplessness and sickness in humans, drive up fuel prices, enrich troughing rent-seeking crony capitalist scumbags, blight views, cause people to die in fuel poverty, harm property values, destabilise the grid, and inflate the cost of living – all while signally failing at the one thing they’re supposed to be good at, viz supplying us with the clean, abundant, eco-friendly energy which is going to save us all from “global warming.”

For anyone prepared to do their research – as opposed to take back handers from the renewable industry, mouth green platitudes or get frightened off by the wind industry’s super-aggressive lawyers – all this has been obvious for years.

Now, even the wind industry’s leading spokesmen have come half way to admitting how utterly crap and pointless wind energy is.

In England, we learned this week from the head of the wind energy lobby groupRenewable UK, the wind levels are so puny and unreliable that turbines cannot generate economically viable quantities of energy.

How about that all you idyllic villages from Cornwall through Northamptonshire to the Fens and thence up north to the humpy Howgills and beyond who’ve had your views blighted, your peace disturbed, your property values trashed, your avian wildlife sliced and diced, your livestock frightened and your community cohesion disrupted by wind projects you never wanted, which you fought hard to prevent, but which were dumped on your doorstep anyway?

How does it feel to know that – having wasted all that time, money and heartache trying unsuccessfully to fight those greedy developers and selfish landowners through the biased planning process only to be overruled by some sinister Inspector Blight figure from the Planning Inspectorate – you’ve belatedly been vindicated by the wind industry itself?

Yes, Big Wind has finally admitted: all those bat-chomping, bird-slicing eco-crucifixes dotted hither and thither over the choicest parts of the matchlessly beautiful English landscape were entirely unnecessary. They’re sitting on those hilltops, turning or not turning as the case may be, making so little difference to Britain’s “energy security” or power supplies or carbon emissions reductions or economy that really they might just as well not be there.

And the most stupid thing of all is we’re paying for it.

This is a disgrace. A national scandal. I’m racking my brain for some equivalents.

In terms of corruption combined with wanton vandalism, it’s akin to all those cities, especially in the North, whose town councillors – in league with developers – allowed perfectly decent Victorian housing stock to be destroyed and replaced by ugly, soul-destroying tower blocks.

In terms of abuse of state power, it is even worse. Property rights are one of the bedrocks of liberal democracy. Arbitrary confiscation – whether literally taking someone’s home and land or reducing its value through state-mandated blight – is something you associate with banana republics and communist tyrannies. Part of the social contract that electorates in Western liberal democracies enjoy is that, in return for their tax money the state will attempt to act in the interests of the people it serves.

Furthermore it is understood by all that the state will only act against its citizens’ individual interests in matters of overriding national importance, such as national security or the need to build infrastructure such as motorways.

Usually – and correctly – people are paid compensation by the government for any losses imposed on them in the “national interest”. But before any of this takes place, one more thing is naturally understood by all: that the government has submitted whatever mega-project it is about to undertake – be it depopulating a whole village in World War II for use as an urban warfare training centre or flattening a swathe of countryside to build the M1 – to a proper cost benefit analysis. That is, one fully – and again quite reasonably – expects that when the state undertakes to do bad and expensive things to its people, it will have first taken steps to ensure that these bad and expensive things will ultimately result in more good than harm.

In the case of the Great Wind Con this manifestly hasn’t happened. Billions of pounds have been squandered, lives blighted and swathes of countryside ruined for a generation because of the lies, greed or incompetence of a fairly small group of people, some of whom frankly ought to be facing criminal charges for corruption, all of whose names ought to live in infamy for the damage they have wantonly inflicted on Britain’s landscape, people and economy.

Unfortunately it is often the way of British politics to let people go scot free for the disastrous cock ups they make while in government. I really don’t think we should. These tossers should be harried to the end of their days and then have their crimes engraved on their headstones as a salutary warning: ruin your country and we’ll ruin you.

Here are some of the rogues whose involvement in this grotesque and unforgiveable scam should never be forgotten.

Ed Miliband – Britain’s first Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change; failed Labour leader; unemployable gimp

Once said that opposing wind farms ought to be as “socially unacceptable as not wearing a seat belt”. As architect of the Climate Change Act – committing Britain to spending over £18 billion a year every year till 2050 pointlessly decarbonising her economy – he probably cost the British taxpayer more money, more pointlessly than any other politician in history.

The European Union

Not that we’re exactly short of reasons to loathe the EU but here’s another: it was responsible for the renewable energy targets – 20 per cent of energy to come from renewables by 2020 – that gave UK politicians like Ed Miliband the excuse they needed to railroad though the policy.

Bryony (now Baroness) Worthington – former Friends of the Earth activist; now in the House of Lords

Bryony effectively wrote the Climate Change Act for Miliband. It really is astonishing the leeway a minority interest campaigner from a hard left  lobby group was given to create legislation that held the whole of Britain hostage to the anti-capitalist fantasies of a small group of green zealots.

David Cameron – Prime Minister; leader of the “greenest government ever”

He could have put a stop to this. As a Conservative, he really should have done. Conservatives are not supposed to be the enemy of property rights nor of the countryside. But instead – perhaps under the influence of his hippy wife SamCam – he sold the pass and embraced green nonsense wholesale. During his Coalition government he handed over the Department of Energy and Climate Change to the fanatically green Lib Dems – the equivalent, as PJ O’Rourke might put it, of giving car keys and whisky to small boys.

Chris Huhne; Ed Davey; Nick Clegg; Lib Dems generally

Huhne’s a perjuring spiv and jailbird; Davey’s thick as pigshit; Clegg is a revoltingly entitled, Westminster educated slimeball of a Euro creep. But let’s not dwell on the nice distinctions: the point is they’re all Lib Dems and therefore so ideologically wedded to the green project that they were quite incapable of subjecting its details to proper scrutiny. Like Dr Johnson said, “there is no settling the point of precedency between a louse and a flea.”

Sir Reginald Sheffield Bt

Of all the toffs with their snouts in the green trough why pick on Sir Reg? Well because he’s the Prime Minister’s father-in-law and because ultimately some of the £1000 a day he makes just to have eight wind turbines sitting doing bugger all on his Lincolnshire estates will end up in Dave and Sam Cam’s pockets – and I really don’t think it’s right that they should benefit financially, at taxpayers’ expense, from policies they helped engineer.

Toffs and landowners generally

Yes there are exceptions – the Duke of Northumberland, for one; my landlord in Northants being another. But generally the upper classes have behaved quite despicably in this matter. When the chips are down, it seems, they don’t give two hoots for the beauteous scenery they inherited by accident of birth. All that counts for them is the free money they get for having bat-chomping, bird-slicing eco-crucifixes on their estates. The Scottish toffs are by far the worst. But in England, special dishonourable mentions could go to Earl Spencer and the Duke of Gloucester, a member of the Royal Family no less: both have tried to host turbines on their lands, regardless of the protests of the poor sods who have to live with them.

That revolting man from Fisher German Estate Agents

I forget the awful creep’s name but he worked for Fisher German and his speciality was to travel the length and breadth of my county advising landowners of the cash bonanza that awaited them if only they didn’t mind totally ruining their neighbours views and peace. Naturally, he was a very passionate advocate for wind energy – and was totally deaf to its shortcomings. As Upton Sinclair said: “It is hard to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” Obviously there are estate agents and land agents like that frightful man from Fisher German all over the country. May they all end up unemployed!

The RSPB

Not only has Europe’s largest wildlife charity promoted wind farms but actually benefited from them financially – despite copious evidence of the damage bat-chomping, bird-slicing eco-crucifixes to the very wildlife the RSPB is supposed to save. That’s why they call it the Royal Society for the Prevention of Birds.

Greenpeace; Friends of the Earth; the WWF etc

These helped promote the climate change hysteria which lent policymakers the apparent moral justification for forcing renewable energy on their electorates. They have never apologised for the damage their junk-science propagandising has caused and they never will.

Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors

By no means is the RICS the only professional institution to have jumped on the green bandwagon regardless of all evidence. But let it stand for all those public and professional bodies which has been corrupted morally and intellectually in the green scam. My beef with the RICS is its complicity in playing down evidence that wind farms have a significant impact on property values. This was shameful.

Acousticians

Again there have been honourable exceptions. But certain sections of the acoustics industry – they know who they are but if I name them I dare say they’ll try to sue me – have quite deliberately gamed the system, covered up evidence, even lied at the behest of the renewable energy behemoth. Had these people done their job half the wind farms blighting our landscape would never have been permitted on health and safety grounds because they’re just too damned close to human habitations – and the damaging effects of infrasound and the noises caused by wind sheer have been known to the acoustics industry for years.

Ecologists

One of the more despicable aspects of this scam – and it just goes to show how corrupting money can be – is the way people who presumably got their various ecology and environmental sciences degrees because they loved nature ended up using their qualifications to help destroy it. You often encountered them at planning hearings, abusing their professional status by testifying that “Oh no, don’t worry. In our expert opinion this sensitively sited wind farm won’t remotely damage any wildlife” – thus undermining one of the main planks in the defence used by hapless local communities trying desperately to avoid having one of these monstrosities plonked in their neighbourhood.

Conservatives

Again not all of them. But it’s quite amazing how many of them acquiesced in this scam – only five of them, for example, voted against the Climate Change Act. Most loathsome of the bunch, though, are the ones who actively pushed for more stringent green or renewable energy policies and who have often ended up benefiting from their various green business interests. Former MP Tim Yeo; the slithy Lord Deben; Charles Hendry. Wherever it is these scumbags live I do hope that no one ever invites them to dinner and that everyone cuts them when they bump into them in the village Post Office or wherever. I certainly would. How they can live with themselves or indeed sleep at night is a mystery to me.

Tony Blair

Well obviously. Almost everything that is wrong with the world can be traced, ultimately, to Tony Blair.

Dale “Dog On A Rope” Vince

Let this deeply unpleasant man stand for all the rent-seeking troughers who have benefited from this Ponzi scheme of an industry which I’m quite sure Enron would dearly have loved to have invented. Dale Vince has made a multi-million pound fortune not by creating value but simply by being canny enough to milk the system. In an open market not one single wind turbine would have been erected in England (or anywhere else probably). They’re there purely because of the government’s regulatory fiat, which heavily incentivises people to build wind turbines not because they’re economically viable but because they’re politically useful. This is crony capitalism pure and simple. It’s ugly, it represents an abuse of government power and I have no sympathy whatsoever for people who make their money in this way. They don’t deserve a penny of it. I wish I could show my contempt by shorting shares in Vince’s company. But you can’t because he’s not publicly quoted. I wonder why.

The BBC

Never once – so far as I can recall – has the BBC ever called into question the viability of or the need for these industrial blights on our landscape. It’s supposed to be impartial and to represent the interests of the whole country. Yet it has allowed itself to be captured by a narrow establishment with a vested interest in promulgating the renewable lie. This represents a betrayal of trust, an abuse of the licence fee and a failure of journalism.

The media generally

Here is what ought to be – indeed is – one of the most scandalous wastes of public money in living memory. Why weren’t our journalists on top of this?

This list is by no means exhaustive. What it does, I hope, is show how easy it is for vocal minority groups – in this case green activists – to hold public policy hostage and also how depressingly easy it is to buy the support of theoretically reputable institutions and individuals with a flash of filthy lucre. Wind energy is so wrong in so many ways that it should have never been allowed past the planning stage. Unfortunately money talks.

I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I say that this is the most disgraceful public scandals of our age. And I think it makes a nonsense of our belief that we are a country of great probity with an effective, honest political system. If we were as high minded and decent as we kid ourselves, then some of the parties I have named above would be facing hefty fines or a stint in prison – and certainly the confiscation of their assets to compensate all the people who have lost out as a result of their dishonesty or, at best, grotesquely misguided high-mindedness. Green loons will always be with us. But the very least we ought to be able to expect our scientists, politicians, economists, businessmen and journalists to do is to hold their wild claims to account rather than indulging their fantasy and impoverishing ordinary people as a result.

And the scandal isn’t over yet, either.

As Paul Homewood reports, the Government is preparing to break its promise to put an end to the subsidies we are forced to pay this pointless and undeserving industry. Under pressure, clearly, from the powerful vested interests involved in the renewable energy scam, the Government plans to redefine the meaning of the word “subsidy” so that the troughers in the wind industry can carry on troughing. How sad to learn that Andrea Leadsom, the Conservative minister who acquitted herself so brilliantly in the Brexit debate on ITV the other night, should be playing a leading role in promulgating this duplicity.

If Cameron’s administration had a shred of moral integrity it would be distancing itself from this scandal as quickly as possible by apologising for its mistakes and making amends.

I hope this piece will be shared around the world by all those groups – I know there are lots of you – from Canada to Australia, from Scotland to Kenya, striving desperately to protect their own special stretch of countryside from this vile, mendacious, conscience-free industry. One day, sooner rather than later, you will be vindicated by history. Wind energy – people will come to recognize – was one of the greatest follies of the late 20th and early 21st centuries. If only the bottom-feeders who have promoted it or profited by it got the punishment they all deserve!

Tom Harris of ICSC Explains Damage Done by “Climaphobia”!

TRAGIC IMPACTS OF MISGUIDED CLIMATE CHANGE MITIGATION POLICY

May 16, 2016: “Ontario’s Green Energy Fiasco — A Cautionary Tale For The United States,” by Tom Harris, published in The Daily Caller, Washington D.C. The Daily Caller writes, “The Daily Caller readership has grown to more than 16.5 million unique visitors per month and draws more than 59 million monthly pageviews.”

“For an increasing fraction of the world’s population, the real climate crisis is not the possibility that dangerous human-caused global warming may someday occur. It is the damage being caused today by government policies to supposedly mitigate climate change.

“Ontario provides a tragic example.”

“Climate change activists might argue that it would be worthwhile to let millions of people suffer today to save billions in the future from climate change catastrophe they claim is right around the corner if we do not change the way we generate energy. But then they would be faced with providing convincing evidence that scientists are able to meaningfully forecast future climate states. They would have to show why the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was wrong when, in their 2001 Assessment Report, they wrote, “The climate system is a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.”

Read whole article.

 

Click here to see map of regions in Ontario that have come out opposed to the installation of industrial wind turbines (IWTs).

Click here to visit Mothers Against Wind Turbines, the Web site of Shellie Correia, the mother of 15 year old Joey who took the picture to the right.

Click here to watch a protest against IWTs in Toronto.

Click here to visit Save the Eagles International, “an organization regrouping bird lovers, ornithologists and associations from 14 countries, who think that we cannot count on mainstream ornithologists and bird societies to save bird life from the windfarm threat.”

Click on image above to enlarge!

 

Poland Calls for 2 km Setbacks Between Buildings & Wind Turbines!

March 8, 2016Poland

Position of the National Institute of Public Health – National Institute of Hygiene on wind farms

The National Institute of Public Health – National Institute of Hygiene is of the opinion that wind farms situated too close to buildings intended for permanent human occupation may have a negative impact on the comfort of living and health of the people living in their proximity.

The human health risk factors that the Institute has taken into consideration in its position are as follows:

  • the emitted noise level and its dependence on the technical specifications of turbines, wind speed as well as the landform and land use around the wind farm,
  • aerodynamic noise level including infrasound emissions and low-frequency noise components,
  • the nature of the noise emitted, taking into account its modulation/impulsive/tonal characteristics and the possibility of interference of waves emitted from multiple turbines,
  • the risk of ice being flung from rotors,
  • the risk of turbine failure with a rotor blade or its part falling,
  • the shadow flicker effect,
  • the electromagnetic radiation level (in the immediate vicinity of turbines),
  • the probability of sleep disruptions and noise propagation at night,
  • the level of nuisance and probability of stress and depression symptoms occurring (in consequence of long exposure), related both to noise emissions and to non-acceptance of the noise source.

In the Institute’s opinion, the laws and regulations currently in force in Poland (regarding risk factors which, in practice, include only the noise level) are not only inadequate to facilities such as wind turbines, but they also fail to guarantee a sufficient degree of public health protection. The methodology currently used for environmental impact assessment of wind farms (including human health) is not applicable to wind speeds exceeding 5 m/s. In addition, it does not take into account the full frequency range (in particular, low frequency) and the nuisance level.

In the Institute’s view , owing to the current lack of a comprehensive regulatory framework governing the assessment of health risks related to the operation of wind farms in Poland, an urgent need arises to develop and implement a comprehensive methodology according to which the sufficient distance of wind turbines from human habitation would be determined. The methodology should take into account all the above-mentioned potential risk factors, and its result should reflect the least favourable situation. In addition to landform and land use characteristics, the methodology should also take into consideration the category, type, height and number of turbines at a specific farm, and the location of other wind farms in the vicinity. Similar legislative arrangements aimed to provide for multi-criteria assessment, based on complex numerical algorithms, are currently used in the world.

The Institute is aware of the fact that owing to the diversity of factors and the complicated nature of such an algorithm, its development within a short time period may prove very difficult. Therefore, what seems to be an effective and simpler solution is the prescription of a minimum distance of wind turbines from buildings intended for permanent human occupation. Distance criteria are also a common standard-setting arrangement.

Having regard to the above, until a comprehensive methodology is developed for the assessment of the impact of industrial wind farms on human health, the Institute recommends 2 km as the minimum distance of wind farms from buildings. The recommended value results from a critical assessment of research results published in reviewed scientific periodicals with regard to all potential risk factors for average distance usually specified within the following limits:

  • 0.5-0.7 km, often obtained as a result of calculations, where the noise level (dBA) meets the currently acceptable values (without taking into account adjustments for the impulse/tonal/modulation features of the nose emitted),
  • 1.5-3.0 km, resulting from the noise level, taking into account modulation, low frequencies and infrasound levels,
  • 0.5-1.4 km, related to the risk of turbine failure with a broken rotor blade or its part falling (depending on the size of the piece and its flight profile, rotor speed and turbine type),
  • 0.5-0.8 km, where there is a risk of ice being flung from rotors (depending on the shape and mass of ice, rotor speed and turbine type),
  • 1.0-1.6 km, taking into account the noise nuisance level (between 4% and 35% of the population at 30-45 dBA) for people living in the vicinity of wind farms,
  • the distance of 1.4-2.5 km, related to the probability of sleep disruptions (on average, between 4% and 5% of the population at 30-45 dBA),
  • 2,0 km, related to the occurrence of potential psychological effects resulting from substantial landscape changes (based on the case where the wind turbine is a dominant landscape feature and the rotor movement is clearly visible and noticeable to people from any location),
  • 1.2-2.1 km, for the shadow flicker effect (for the average wind turbine height in Poland, including the rotor, of 120 to 210 m).

In its opinions. the Institute has also taken into account the recommended distances of wind farms from buildings, as specified by experts, scientists, as well as central and local government bodies around the world (usually 1.0-5.0 km).

Bibliography
(Position of the NIPH-PZH on wind farms)

Another Expose` on the Corrupt Wind Industry, and Their Government Enablers!

‘Follow the Money’: Hard-Hitting Danish Drama Documents Wind Industry Corruption, Australian Sequel Promised

follow the money

STT has just gorged on two episodes of what is presented as well crafted drama, but which to STT followers will play out like a hard-hitting documentary.

Australia’s SBS started screening ‘Follow the Money’ a couple of weeks ago, the plot-line for Episode 1 is described as follows:

Mads, a police detective, is called out to investigate a body washed ashore near a wind farm. At first, it merely looks like an industrial accident, but the case implicates the upper echelons of Energreen – one of Denmark’s most successful and leading energy companies. The CEO is charismatic Sander, and a young lawyer, Claudia, is working hard to advance in the company. Nicky, a former car thief and mechanic, has put his life of crime behind him for his girlfriend’s sake, but his new colleague Bimse tempts Nicky with a chance to make a quick buck.

From the creators of Borgen, Follow the Money is as slick as any of the recent crop of Nordic Noir crime dramas.  While the wind-cult Weekly,The Guardian gave it a critical pasting when the BBC aired it in Britain back in March (probably something to do with it being just a tad inconsistent with green-left groupthink) –  STT gives it five stars.

Indeed, Follow the Money comes with an STT consumer warning: “this TV series is more addictive than crack cocaine”.

For our Australian followers, Follow the Money screens on Thursday nights at 9:30pm.  For our many international followers, the series is available at SBS On Demand, which will also allow our local followers to catch up on the first two episodes: for episode one click here and episode two here. You can view it on a PC, Smart TV or iPad etc.

The site adds a new episode after it goes to air, so return to SBS On Demand to Follow the Money. For a taste, here’s the trailer:

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Without giving too much away, the company at the centre of the story, Energreen, is filled with cocksure and arrogant types, of the kind that you might find swanning around with wind power outfits like, Infigen andPacific Hydro.

follow the money peter

Keep an eye out for one character who STT is certain was modelled on Vesta’s Australian pinup boy, Ken McAlpine (the physical resemblance to Ken is good, but the character’s similarly channelled arrogance and narcissism is uncanny).

The lone wolf detective, Mads finds roadblocks being thrown up at every turn by his superior officers, which smack of wind industry corruption and interference.

Of course Denmark, the birthplace of Vestas, is no stranger to wind industry sleaze, corruption and fraud.

Vestas and its slick financial dealings have, no doubt, provided Follow the Money’s scriptwriters with plenty of material to work with.

The plot-line reads a whole lot like the trouble that Vesta’s Chief Financial Officer, Henrik Nørremark and a band of its executives found themselves in back in 2013, having engaged in a run of fraudulent transactions that cost the company around 140 million kroner.

Just like Follow the Money, the boys from Vestas found themselves under police scrutiny; and, thereafter, the company did everything it could to quarantine itself from a PR nightmare – cutting the former corporate heroes loose and leaving them for dead (see our post here).

Now, turning closer to home let’s take a sneak peek at Australia’s own Follow the Money documentary sequel.

The Pilot for the Series kicks off in Australia’s Federal Parliament during Senate Estimates held on 5 May 2016 (the last session of play before Parliament was dissolved ready for an election in July).

Chris Back

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WA Liberal Senator, Chris Back starts off with a little probing of the Clean Energy Regulator, Chloe Munro (keep a lookout for her doppelgänger in the Danish version of Follow the Money) on the topic of around $100 million worth of Renewable Energy Certificates pocketed by Babcock and Brown (aka Infigen or Energreen), which were paid out based on a signature that the CER has, despite some effort, been unable to verify. Here’s the Script for ‘Follow the Money, Downunder’, Scene 1 (taken from Hansard):

Senator BACK: Thanks Ms Munro and thank you for the information before lunch, it was very interesting. Again, I appreciate you correcting the answer—217, I think it was. At the end of stage 1 of your explanation you mentioned that on July 7 2004 Babcock and Brown lodged a new application for registry to accredit a power station showing Lake Bonney Wind Farm Pty Ltd as the applicant.

What concerned me, and I am asking for your response, is that you said it is not clear who signed the declaration on behalf of the company on that form; the signature is illegible. That is of enormous concern to me. The CER would have issued certificates to that organisation since then, probably of values—of what?—of $100 million?

Ms C Munro: I could not estimate that on the run.

Senator BACK: My guestimate is somewhere between $70 million and $160 million, based on a document the signature on which was not able to be verified. What action can be taken?

Ms C Munro: Perhaps to set your mind at rest with respect to that: first of all we were retrieving records from our predecessor organisation, the Office of the Renewable Energy Regulator, so I cannot speak about the precise processes they would have followed at the time. But I think they would have been in a position to verify that the signature was the signature of somebody they had probably been dealing with, because usually there is an exchange of correspondence and so on before the actual accreditation. I think the fact that at this stage we cannot make out the signature does not mean to say that it was unknown to them.

To be honest, my own signature, on its own, is not always decipherable. What I think was missing was that the block where the person’s name was written separately had not been filled in. But taken with the other information that would have been there at the time, I do not think it suggests an impropriety in that regard.

Going to the question that you asked before, the point is that the legal person is the ‘entity’. This person is an authorised officer. Clearly, it is important to verify that the signature is from the authorised officer. But at this stage I do not think that we have any reason to believe there was a problem in that regard.

Senator BACK: Sure. Can I have an assurance then that as a result of the Renewable Energy Regulations regulation 3L coming into effect in December 2012 that an omission of that nature would not be repeated?

Ms C Munro: No. I think that generally we have tightened up a lot of our standing operating procedures. I think that in terms of verifying who signatories are and that the authorised officers are the appropriate people across all our schemes, we probably have some more consistent processes there.

Senator BACK: Thank you. I will just go back to question 222 from the previous estimates. I asked you about the membership of the Clean Energy Council. Are you able to give the committee an assurance—if not now, then take it on notice—that members of the board, when there has been a matter involving an organisation with which they have an association, have in fact excluded themselves from any decisions regarding that particular entity? I would imagine that, with good governance, the board minutes would indicate that a person has excluded themselves from the debate.

Ms C Munro: I cannot give you that assurance on behalf of the Clean Energy Council, although I absolutely agree with you that that is normal governance. What I can say for background is: the Clean Energy Council board is a representative body, as many industry associations are, and board members are drawn from amongst participants in the industry. The chair revolves fairly frequently. Until recently it was Michael Fraser, who was the predecessor of the current chief executive of AGL, for example.

But I think, more significantly, the co-regulation takes place between ourselves and the Clean Energy Council is on matters that relate to the small-scale scheme—things like accreditation of installers, listing of components like panels and so on. So, those matters I think, generally, would not be decided by the council; they would be decided at the executive level. The council members are more likely to be participants in the large-scale renewable energy targets, in which the Clean Energy Council does not have a regulatory role. That is a long way of saying: I cannot advise you on how the Clean Energy Council conducts its meetings, because we are not a member of it. I think it is unlikely that there are occasions in its deliberations for the kind of conflicts that you might be apprehensive about.
Hansard 5.5.16

Hmmm… a former wind industry exec turned government bureaucrat, brushing aside obvious conflicts of interests, deflecting enquiries about fictitious applicants for hundreds of $millions in REC Tax/Subsidy, paid to a wind power outfit that disintegrated in a $10 billion insolvency in 2009 and Phoenixed as Infigen, starts to sound very Danish Noir.

But the drama didn’t end there.

STT champion, John Madigan followed up on the story we covered back in September last year (see our posts here and here) about Pacific Hydro and Acciona presenting fabricated wind farm noise reports (claiming compliance at non-compliant wind farms – Waubra and Cape Bridgewater), allowing them to continue pocketing hundreds of $millions in RECs.

The CER is well aware that both outfits have been relying upon ‘made-to-measure’ noise reports from Marshall Day, but have steadfastly refused the act or investigate.

Now, in classic Follow the Money style, it appears that the Australian Federal Police are hot on the trail of Chloe and her gang.

sen john madigan close

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Senator MADIGAN: Thank you, Chair. Last year, Ms Munro, I met with the Prime Minister and the Attorney-General to alert them to my concerns surrounding false wind farm noise reporting. As a result of that meeting I was led to believe that the Attorney-General had referred these allegations to the Australian Federal Police for formal investigation. Are you able to confirm whether the AFP has held any discussions with anyone from the office of the Clean Energy Regulator in relation to the CER-accredited Cape Bridgewater and/or Waubra wind farms?

Ms C Munro: Yes, Senator, I am able to confirm that. We were approached in February by the Australian Federal Police, who were making initial inquiries relating to the matters that you put.

They had a meeting with members of my staff in order to understand the way that our schemes worked and how those entities would be accredited.

Following that, and on our advice, they made an information request. I authorised the disclosure of information relating specifically to Cape Bridgewater, and that was done. We have not heard anything further from them, so I am not aware whether they proceeded to a formal investigation—this was their preliminary information gathering. We have had no further contact from them since then.

Senator MADIGAN: Thank you, Ms Munro.

Stay tuned for Episode Two: ‘Feds Skewer CER’

chloe munro

Wind Energy…..VERY Little Bang, for your Buck!

The Colossal Cost of Intermittent & Unreliable Wind Power

yacht

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There are 3 electricity essentials – that the power source and its delivery to homes and businesses be: 1) reliable; 2) secure; and 3) affordable. Which means that wind power – a wholly weather dependent power source, that can’t be stored and costs 3-4 times the cost of conventional power – scores NIL on all three counts.

Here is a brilliant analysis of just why wind power cannot be (and will never amount to) a meaningful power generation source.

Renewable Energy: The Question Of Capacity
Principia Scientific
Ed Hoskins
5 April 2016

Introduction
This article is concerned with the two main forms of weather dependent Renewable Energy, Wind Power (Onshore and Offshore) and Photovoltaic solar power.  In the UK this amounts to ~75% of all installed Renewable Energy.  The other renewable energy  inputs are traditional Hydro power ~8% and the remainder are other sources such as biomass, waste and landfill gas amounting to ~17%.

Capacity1

The capacity percentage of any power generating installation is calculated as the actual electrical output achieved divided by the nominal Nameplate output.  This article uses both stated estimates from the USA  EIA and real measures of capacity in Europe as of 2014. It thus provides reasonably correct comparisons of the efficacy of Renewable installations.

When announcements are made about Renewable Energy developments they are presented as the full Name Plate capacity usually in Megawatts and also often disingenuously as the number of homes that could be supplied at the full level of electrical output.  So such announcements are always on the optimistic side, because they only state the maximum operating electrical output that can be achieved from the installation rather than the amount of useable energy that is actually produced.

In addition because Renewable Energy output is crucially dependent on the vagaries of the weather (for wind) and the weather in combination with the season and the time of day (for solar), the actual electrical output achieved by Renewables is inevitably substantially less that the Name Plate capacity of the installation.   Peak electricity demand usually occurs on winter evenings when Solar power is non-existent and weather patterns can reduce wind speeds to virtually nil across the country.  There can be no coordination between the timing to the wind energy production and a Nation’s demand for electricity.

Traditional methods of electricity generation using fossil fuels are not subject to these vagaries and can produce electricity whenever needed to match customer demand.

Crucially traditional forms of electricity generation are

  • non-intermittent
  • dispatchable

to meet demand when needed.

Reporting on Renewable Energy actually generated after installation is commonly presented as annual Gigawatt Hours (GWhrs), thus noting the amount of electrical power actually supplied to the grid by the installation over the previous year.

Annual Gigawatt hours are easily converted to the equivalent output in Gigawatts by dividing by the number of hours in the year (365*24)=8760.  This output value  can be compared with the original Nameplate capacity to calculate the capacity percentage of any generating installation for comparative purposes.  Thus the absolute efficacy of a Renewable Energy installation can be judged as the percentage ratio of actual electricity production divided by the stated Nameplate Capacity.

Importantly however this percentage factor does not account for the usefulness of the electrical power that is produced at any particular time to match electrical demand, because of the inevitable intermittency and non-dispatchability of Renewable Energy power sources.  It is therefore a generous measure when used here for comparative purposes of efficacy, capital and running costs, when comparing renewable and traditional forms off electricity generation.

The Renewable Energy industry could not exist without the Government mandated subsidies and preferential tariffs.  Without Government subsidies and consumption mandates the Renewable Energy industry is not a viable business.

Without its Government mandate, Government subsidies and Government interference weather dependent Renewable Energy would never be a chosen part of the generating mix, especially when viewed from the needs for the engineering viability of a nation’s electrical supply grid.

In summary weather based Renewable Energy is both very expensive and unreliable.

These substantial extra costs and the potential for supply failure, although mandated by Government, are in fact serious cost burdens on Electricity consumers, both domestic and industrial.  As the part played by Renewables grows in the Electrical grid so those cost burdens will increase.

Sources Of Renewable Capacity Measures

The following data sources are used here:

US government Energy Information Administration

www.eia.gov – see table 1

Table 1 above gives the following values for USA installations:

  • Natural Gas Advanced Combined Cycle     87%
  • Onshore Wind                                                     36%
  • Offshore Wind                                                     38%
  • Solar PV on grid                                                  25%
  • Advanced Coal                                                    85%
  • Advanced Nuclear                                              90%

Capacity2

EurObservER

EurObservER-Wind-Energy-Barometer-2015-EN-2.pdf

EurObservER-Photovoltaic-Barometer-2015-EN.pdf

These publications give an up to date indication of the current scale of Renewable installations in Europe country by country and overall for Europe.  The following capacity percentage for solar and wind power are reported in Europe.

Capacity3

So it can be seen that Renewable Energy performance throughout Europe is very substantially less that the published levels of achievement stated by the US  EIA.

Capacity4

When the effectiveness of Wind power and Solar are combined the comparison in effectiveness is clear.

Germany with a commitment to ~37% of all European Renewable installations by 2014 had the least performant Renewable industry in Europe, (an overall capacity 13.2%).  This is mainly because of the huge commitment in Germany to Solar power, 42% of all European installations.  This has to be driven by a misconception simply because Germany is a cloudy Northern European country.  Spain, the UK and Denmark have much better performance rates, but they have  much lower commitments to Solar power and in the case of the UK a higher commitment to Offshore wind power.

The impact of measured Renewable Energy capacity achievements can be seen in the EorObser’ER from data across Europe in 2014.

Capacity5

For more detailed analysis see:

European Renewable Energy performance and costs: 2014

The Renewable Energy Foundation time series data from the UK 

The Renewable Energy Foundation in the UK has provided comprehensive data on the progress of Renewable Installations in the UK since 2002.  This included Gigawatt Hour estimations of electrical output.  In addition it also provides a drill down database of all Renewable installations in the UK.

http://www.ref.org.uk/generators/group/index.php?group=yr

The UK progress in the development of Renewable installations since 2002 is shown below.

Capacity6

The capacity progress over time can be seen below.  It seems that 2015 was a particularly unproductive year for Renewables, especially Windpower.  For further comparative purposes the average percentage capacities achieved since 2002 are taken rather than the recent results.

Capacity7

The comparative outcome from these three sources of capacity information is set out below.

Capacity8

The USA data from EIA has more generous expectations of Renewable capacity than can be measured and reported both for Europe overall and for the UK.  Unfortunately  the EurObser’ER data does not distinguish currently between the values of electrical outputs from Onshore and Offshore Wind installations.  The overall capacity figure at 21.8% should have defined a higher efficacy for Offshore wind power.  The order of the differential can be seen in the UK data where there is a very substantial commitment to Offshore wind power.

There is an “urban legend” that Offshore wind power has a capacity value of ~45%.  This is entirely contradicted not only by the USA estimated data but also by the lower values measured from overall European data and the direct time series measurements from the UK.  The capacity values shown for the UK are the average values since Renewable installations started in 2002 rather than the current values from 2015.  In 2015 at 16.4% overall, this was a particularly non-performant year for weather based Renewables in the UK.

Comparative Renewable Costings And Effectiveness

The US EIA also publish comprehensive comparative costing data for different electrical generation technologies in the USA. The US EIA also provides percentage capacity estimates for the various generation technologies above.

http://www.eia.gov/forecasts/aeo/electricity_generation.cfm (see table 1)

In summary this table assembled in 2013 can be condensed into the following graphic for comparative cost purposes showing the capital and running cost implications measured as $/MWhr.

Capacity9

However these costs contain estimate fuel costs as from 2013, since that time the prices of both natural gas and coal have dropped substantially and those prices are now expected to remain relatively low for the foreseeable future.   The US EIA also publishes indicative costs of different electrical generation technologies as Base Overnight Costs in 2014 at:

http://www.eia.gov/forecasts/aeo/assumptions/pdf/table_8.2.pdf

This makes a realistic estimate of Gas Fired generation costs at approximately ~$1000,000,000/GW.  This value can be used for comparative valuations of the other generation technologies.  In addition it is important to note that the time taken to install a gas fired installation is only about 2 years from inception to production.

Capacity10

The capital costs are substantially higher ~7 times higher for  solar power more than 10 times higher for offshore wind power and even ~3.5 times higher for Onshore wind.  Gas Fired power running costs even accounting for fuel costs are about equivalent to Offshore power installations.  Solar and Onshore wind power installation cost about  60% of Gas fired electrical production even including current fuel costs.

Renewable comparative cost effectiveness

Using the following assumptions:

  • the US EIA levelled cost data is adjusted for current gas and coal prices
  • the assumption that the capital cost of a 1GW gas fired plant running with 90% capacity is about €1 billion, €1,000,000,000
  • that the US$ and the Euro provide roughly equivalent value in their respective continents.

Those estimated capital expenditures throughout Europe are as follows:

Capacity11

Conclusions

The combination of the capacity along with factors and the US  EIA costing comparisons, along with  the EurObseER data in the following table summarises the situation of Renewables in Europe.

Capacity12

Accordingly it can be seen that Solar energy can cost about 63 times as much as Gas Fired generation for the amount of power it is capable of generating.  Offshore Windpower is about 45 times as much.  Whereas Onshore Windpower is more effective at only about 16 times as much as gas fired generation for the power it can generate.

When the weather dependent Renewables across Europe are assessed in overall combination, their capital cost in-effectiveness is about 30 times more than conventional Gas Fired electricity generation.

These comparative ratios still do not account for the inevitable intermittency and non-dispatchability inherent in the poor performance of Renewables.

If the objectives of using Renewables were not confused with “saving the planet” from the output of Man-made CO2, their actual cost in-effectiveness and inherent unreliability would have always ruled them out of any consideration as means of electricity generation for any developed economy.
Principia Scientific

Here’s Ed Hoskin’s point in a nutshell: the chaos produced by South Australia’s 17 Wind Farms (nameplate capacity of 1,477MW) during November last year.

SA nov 15