Thursday, September 3, 2015

A new crisis: Man-made Global....Gentling?

News flash:  Not enough wind to drive wind turbines.
Interesting loss in spectral content on the extreme right side of the chart.
First we had a crisis in "Man-made" global warming, supported with data that was so uniform in its relentless upward trend that it looked like lab data pencil-whipped by a high school freshman.

Next, we had a crisis in severe weather to explain the fact that we were still setting record lows.  The narrative was that the atmosphere is an enormous heat driven engine.  "Global warming"  evolved into "Violent, unpredictable weather".

And now this:

In January of 2015, wind speeds remained 20 to 45 percent below normal on areas of the west coast, but it was especially bad in California, Oregon, and Washington, where those levels dropped to 50 percent below normal during the month of January.

The power density contained in wind varies by the cube of the velocity.   The kinetic energy per cubic meter that impinges upon the blades varies by the square of the velocity.  The number of cubic meters that impinges upon the blades per unit of time varies with the velocity.  Multiplying them together tells you that halving the wind speed reduces the power to 12.5% of what it was.

"Wind plant generation variability occurs over different time scales, from subhourly to seasonally and even annually, reflecting variations in wind speeds," EIA added. "Unexpected drops in output may require grid operators to schedule other sources of power on short notice. Furthermore, because the federal tax credit for utility-scale wind energy is based on generation volumes, lower wind speeds mean reduced tax credits."

The implication is that it is all about the tax credits.  Wind energy cannot stand on their own without the tax credits  and renewable energy mandates.  Utilities have to "peg" wind energy production, otherwise they are stuck with enormous legacy costs and no revenue to service it.

That is why the operators yank traditional generating resources through a knot-hole.

I wonder how the apologists will rationalize our latest crisis in man-made global gentling.

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