Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Are Green Energy Policies Effective - or are they all Failures

Whilst this article [Link Below] mainly blames the politicians, the main issue it neglects to cover with regard to cleaner energy methods [Wind, Sun, Tides and Bio-Digesters] is that of the distortion that misaligned subsidies have.

The initial subsidy for Solar Photo-Voltaic [Solar PV] was so over-generous that a massive 'industry' of direct-selling organisations sprang up almost over-night. These panels soaked up so much subsidy that the scheme has been massively cut back - so who set the original subsidy at 44p per kWh? Way, way over the current retail price of electricity - and not into the best technology either.

Now efficiency of 'renewables' [cleaner technologies is a better description; and certainly not wood pellet burning technologies] is often slated as the reason whey they are not effective or efficient.

  • Now the photo below shows steam [yes STEAM] rising from the cooling towers [yes COOLING TOWERS - not Chimneys] - probably Drax with a total of 8 Cooling Towers, ARE DESIGNED TO WASTE AROUND 60% of the energy released from burning Coal or even wood pellets - its the engineering answer to "efficient energy production" [...of a large scale remote power station].
  • Power Station Cooling Towers Wasting 60% Heat
  • However the electricity generated under centralised power plants like this is rarely above 22% at the plug in your house. Some say as low as 11%.

This in-efficiency [in centralised power systems] could have been solved by utilising lots of smaller power plants, built close to towns and cities which would not necessitate Cooling Towers, as waste heat can be distributed to houses and industry - just like in Denmark. Its called de-centralised power or even embedded power where tiny street corner electricity and heat for distribution are generated. So these remote [centralised] power stations are part of our problem.
Embedded Power Islington

Tidal projects also suffer from 'pilot project issues' and unnecessarily high subsidies - so the technology is fine, the "power" is clean and there is zero fuel cost - so lets look into differing cost models and subsidy strategies - this is the problem - how to assist innovation.

Dailymail online/debate/Christopher-Booker