Recently in Energy Category

OK - who pays for this?

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All this talk about is fun until someone has to pay for it.
From OilPrice:

The U.S. Needs To Double The Size Of Its Energy Grid

    • While the U.S. clean energy sector is booming, the country’s energy grid will need to expand if it is to get the new energy supply to demand centers around the country.
    • According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the country will need 47,300 gigawatt-miles of new power lines by 2035, amounting to a 57% expansion of the existing grid.
    • As well as expanding the grid the existing grid needs to be improved, two tasks that will require a revamp of the current system of reviewing and approving energy grid projects.

In order to keep up with the expansion of renewable energy production capacity, the United States will have to more than double the current size of the electric grid. Stimulus from both the public and private sectors are hitting their intended mark, and the clean energy sector is booming. However, much of the potential environmental benefits of electrification will be completely wasted if we don’t have the power lines and grid capacity to transmit that power from where it's being produced to where the demand is concentrated.

Yeah - fun to talk about but the true cost is never talked about.  Not just building out the grid, we also need to include the cost of the local substations and switches.

Nuclear is the way - specifically, Thorium reactors.  All else is smoke and mirrors and pixy-dust. fail - Hydrogen fire

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Hydrgen is being touted as an alternative fuel.  It is not, it is an energy transport and a poor one at that.  It takes energy to manufacture. By the time you burn it, you have spent more energy than if you just used gasoline or natural gas to begin with. Very difficult to store and transport too.

Case in point from Charlotte, NC station WSOC:

Hydrogen tanker fire causes half-mile evacuation in Troutman
A half-mile evacuation was ordered Friday night for all businesses in the area of the Pilot Travel Center at 1006 Charlotte Highway off Interstate 77, the Troutman Fire and Rescue stated in a Facebook post around 11 p.m.

A tanker truck hauling hydrogen was on fire at the gas station.

Highway 21 was closed through the night and reopened around 10 a.m.

Couple of problems.  A hydrogen flame is almost invisible in sunlight.  It burns very hot so a firefighter could suffer serious injuries from something that they can not see. It has a huge explosive range - something like 20% to 90% H2 to Air mixture.  By a quirk in chemistry, one gallon of gasoline has more Hydrogen in it than one gallon of liquid Hydrogen.

Fortunately, Troutman is about four hours away from where I am moving.
Keep that stupidity away from me thank you...

Now I am interested...

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Wonder if he has looked at Thorium nuclear reactors...

From the London Daily Mail:

Train carrying more than 30,000 gallons of propane fuel derails in Florida - Hazmat crews rush to the scene after six cars overturn

    • A train carrying more than 30,0000 gallons of propane fuel has derailed near a homeless camp in Florida
    • Five cars were carrying sheetrock, while one of the overturned cars was carrying propane
    • There is no indication at this time that any of the fuel is leaking, but hazmat teams are monitoring the situation

As a note, the 30,000 gallons is the capacity of one railroad tank car.  Five cars with sheetrock derailed and one car with propane derailed.  There was a second car with propane and it jumped the track but it stayed upright. Propane is pretty chemically benign so not as bad as the Palestine spill. 

About that new car of yours...

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From Kelly Blue Book:

J.D. Power: Electric Car Charging Getting Worse
Charging an electric vehicle (EV) away from home is a gamble, and the odds are getting worse.

In August, J.D. Power released its second annual U.S. Electric Vehicle Experience Public Charging Study. The results were bad. The survey of more than 11,500 EV drivers found that 20% of the time EV owners attempted to charge their cars in public in the first half of 2022, they found the nearest charger broken.

J.D. Power has now updated the study with data from the second half of the year. The result? Things got worse, with more than 21% of charging attempts ending in failure.

Reasons included software problems, vandalized chargers, and payment processing errors.

More at the site.  These fools think that they can mandate all electric vehicles by 2035.  The infrastructure is not there and it will never be.  Costs too much.  EVs are fun but they are a toy for rich geeks and liberals.  Another prong of the fork that the elites are using to keep us in our 15-minute cities.  Excuuuuuuse me but NO! in the news

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Seems that Wind Energy is failing.  From Beege Welborn writing at Hot Air:

Wind winding down?
Sometimes it’s funny how coming across an article will make you smile because of a memory triggered by some aspect of it. That happened yesterday, and again today, when I came across these pieces on the chaos in the wind turbine manufacturing sector.

And the meat of the article - talking about Wind Energy in Europe:

Now the entire industry is hitting headwinds they hadn’t counted on and it could spell disaster.

The European wind industry has warned of continued difficulties in 2023 as high materials costs and slow approvals for new wind power projects drag back profitability, despite rising demand for renewable energy.

And the upshot:

German manufacturer Siemens Gamesa, one of the premier turbine providers in the renewables game, reported an almost billion-dollar loss for the Oct-Dec quarter of last year! So guess what they want?

Global green energy company Siemens Gamesa reported Thursday that it had lost a staggering $967 million during the three-month period from between October to December.

The Germany-based company, which dubs itself as “the global leader in offshore power generation,” noted the wind industry has faced various unfavorable pressures leading to negative growth in recent months and years, in its earnings report for the first quarter of fiscal year 2023 released Thursday morning. The company added that governments would need to further assist the industry to ensure future positive growth.

In other words, they have failed in the marketplace and now, they want our tax dollars in the form of government subsidies so that they can continue making money. Governments make very little real money on their own (leasing out Federal lands for resource extraction and such...) so most money that comes from the government started off in our own wallets first before they took it away from us in taxes.

Much more at the site - they are also having problems with warrenty repairs costing too much and with a major decline in new orders.

People need to look to nuclear.  Specifically, liquid salt reactors using Thorium as fuel. Walk-away safe, the waste is a lot easier to deal with (needs 400 years storage instead of 40,000 years) and it has a lot more efficient use of fuel. Thorium is common in the Earths crust - Uranium is rare.  We have about 5,000 years of known reserves.

Power outage - update

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California's power outage has gotten worse.

Last night at 8PM? CA - 146K and NV - 48K customers without power 

Today? 203K for California and 35K for Nevada

Again, nothing on the news that I can see...

Curious - power outage

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California is showing 146K customers without power scattered over several counties.

Nevada is at 48K

Do not see anything on the news outlets...

I love the word Schadenfreude - so perfect.  From InfoGalactic:

Schadenfreude — is pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others. This word is taken from German and literally means "harm-joy". It is the feeling of joy or pleasure when one sees another fail or suffer misfortune.

From Balkan Green Energy News:

Wind farm in Germany is being dismantled to expand coal mine
A wind farm in Germany is being dismantled to expand the Garzweiler lignite mine. One of eight turbines installed at the location in 2001 has already been removed. Nevertheless, the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia said it would phase out coal by 2030, as did RWE, the company that owns the mine.

The turbines were in operation since 2001, and government subsidies have expired. Energiekontor and wpd, which is also active in the Balkans, operate the wind farm.

Please note the words "government subsidies' in that last paragraph.  Since the government has very few actual sources of income (rental of federal lands, etc...), these subsidies are paid for by the taxpayers.  The wind farms are not economically viable unless We The People kick in enough to make them worth developing.  Wind and solar are not baseload - the energy is not 100% dependable and for ever megawatt of generation capacity that a wind turbine has, there is another megawatt of natural gas turbine running on hot-standby so it can take over when the wind dies. They don't tell you that when they tell you the talking points.

The line about "phase out coal" is a sop to the environmentalists.  When reality comes knocking, that proposal will be slid under a stack of other papers and lost.

As for coal - it seems popular in England too - from the Beeb:

First UK coal mine in decades approved despite climate concerns
Michael Gove has approved the first new UK coal mine in 30 years despite concern about its climate impacts among Conservative MPs and experts.

The proposed mine in Cumbria would dig up coking coal for steel production in the UK and across the world.

Critics say the mine would undermine climate targets and demand for coking coal is declining.

But supporters claim the mine, near Whitehaven, will create jobs and reduce the need to import coal.

Beats depending on the Russians for cheap energy.  Putting all their eggs in one basket.  President Trump famously tried to warn them back in September, 2018 and they smirked while he was talking.

The headline says it all - Switzerland

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From Jazz Shaw writing at Hot Air:

Swiss look to ban use of electric cars over the winter to save energy
The European Union jumped on the electric vehicle craze well ahead of other parts of the world, particularly after the Paris climate accord. But in typical socialist fashion, they weren’t content with simply encouraging people to switch to EVs. Many European countries almost immediately started making plans to ban gas-powered cars and trucks and make EVs mandatory. Lots of Europeans wanted to get out ahead of the curve and began snapping the newer models up. But then came the start of the war in Ukraine, cutting energy supplies just as Europe was trying to wean itself off of fossil fuels. Now, in a rather embarrassing reversal, Switzerland is considering legislation that would ban people from driving electric vehicles except in urgent conditions over the winter because there simply might not be enough juice on the grid to recharge them. (From Der Spiegel. Original is in German but Google Translate can convert it for you.)

Switzerland's electricity comes mostly from hydro but they have to import too. They are concerned what could happen if the imports are not available.  Smart and careful people - independent.

Heh - energy in Germany

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Pure Schedenfreude - looks like saner heads are prevailing.  From OilPrice:

Germany Is Dismantling A Wind Farm To Make Way For A Coal Mine
A wind farm is being dismantled in western Germany to make way for an expansion of an open-pit lignite coal mine in a “paradoxical” situation highlighting the current prioritization of energy security over clean energy in Europe’s biggest economy.

The dismantling of at least one wind turbine at the wind farm close to the German coal mine Garzweiler, operated by energy giant RWE, has already started. RWE says that lignite, or brown coal, has been mined from the Garzweiler coalfields for over 100 years.

RWE also said at the end of September that three of its lignite-fired coal units that were previously on standby would return to the electricity market on schedule in October.

“The three lignite units each have a capacity of 300 megawatts (MW). With their deployment, they contribute to strengthening the security of supply in Germany during the energy crisis and to saving natural gas in electricity generation,” RWE said last month.

It all boils down to a simple choice.
Do you want to live through the winter or do you want to continue virtue signaling?
It is as simple as that.

That did not take long at all - Florida

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Florida now has less than 5,000 customers without electric power.

Amazing job of recovery and repair - good work by everyone.  Shows what strong leadership will do...

By comparison, Puerto Rico has 1/10th the population and still has 23K outages from a storm that was weeks earlier.

Fuel fun in France

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How's that and Russian sanctions going for you:

Sparkey cars anyone?

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I would love to have an electric runabout.  Have an e-bike and love it. A road vehicle for long distance?  Still not practical — we do not have the battery technology yet and there is nothing in the wings waiting.
And then, there is this - from FOX News:

Electric vehicles are exploding from water damage after Hurricane Ian, top Florida official warns
A top Florida state official warned Thursday that firefighters have battled a number of fires caused by electric vehicle (EV) batteries waterlogged from Hurricane Ian.

EV batteries that have been waterlogged in the wake of the hurricane are at risk of corrosion, which could lead to unexpected fires, according to Jimmy Patronis, the state's top financial officer and fire marshal.

"There’s a ton of EVs disabled from Ian. As those batteries corrode, fires start," Patronis tweeted Thursday. "That’s a new challenge that our firefighters haven’t faced before. At least on this kind of scale."

Lithium fires are intense.  Like I said, we do not have the technology yet.  Nor do we have the infrastructure.

From PipelineOnline:

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me 29 times, shame on me
Alberta adds 29th wind farm, and collectively they all put out 0.3 per cent of their capacity on Oct. 1

I had something of a surreal experience on Wednesday, Sept. 28. I was sitting in the SIMSA Energy Supply Forum in Regina, listening to the presenter from General Electric-Hitachi speak about the plan to build four 300 megawatt small modular reactors in this province.

I happened to glance at that moment on my phone to the Alberta Electric System Operator grid website, which puts out minute-by-minute updates on the output of that province’s grid. (SaskPower pointedly does not do this, citing such data as proprietary.)

To my amazement, yet again, Alberta’s wind fleet was collapsing in its output. I watched the numbers fall until it hit 26 megawatts at 1:55 p.m. That was just one per cent of the total 2,589 megawatts of wind generation connected to the grid, across 28 wind farms on that date.

Much more at the site - it got worse, much much worse to the point where two largish diesel gensets could have matched the output from the entire provinces wind farms.  How much did they spend on these? Solar and wind are not baseload.  They will never be baseload.

All of this is Canadian taxpayer money down the rathole for political gain and posturing.

Nord Stream - an alternate view

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Russian maintenence - the same way that reactor No. 4 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant was maintained.
From Law Dog.  Too long to excerpt here - just go and read.  Well written, five minutes and it will open your eyes to a very good possibility.

Hanlon's razor writ large: "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity"

Ironic - windfarms

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A great big heaping of irony here - from FOX News:

Norway threatens to shut down wind farm after wind destroys turbines
The Norwegian government has threatened to shutter a large wind farm in the northern part of the country after reports of wind storms destroying turbines, sending parts flying.

Norwegian Water and Energy Directorate (NVE), the agency that oversees the nation's water and energy resources, penned a letter this week to the operator of Ånstadblåheia Vindpark in Sortland, Norway, expressing concern about falling debris at the site and the broader technical integrity of the plant. The agency said it would consider further action including a potential government-ordered shut down if the operator doesn't address the situation.

No mention as to who designed or manufactured the turbines.  A simple site survey should have shown this to be a potential issue. Who is responsible for the damage and the replacement.

I love how they never mention how much energy it takes to manufacture a wind turbine versus what its total output.  They are not environmentally friendly and there is still no way to recycle the blades when they are taken out of service in 10 years. Especially fun that the resin used in the blades is sourced from petroleum hydrocarbons.

Move from reliable energy to politically correct but intermittent energy and things can happen.
From energy website OilPrice:

German Nuclear Power Plant To Shut Down After Reported Leak
As Germany desperately attempts to stave off a winter energy crisis, most recently seizing Rosneft refinery assets, a leak at a nuclear plant reported by the country’s Environment Ministry adds to the pressure, with operations now set to be shut in for a week as repairs get underway.

Germany’s Isar 2 nuclear power plant in Bavaria on Monday reported a leak that will require it to go offline in October for repairs.

The nuclear plant is already slated for a permanent shutdown at the beginning of next year as part of Germany’s plan to phase out nuclear power. However, given the looming energy crisis in Germany as winter approaches, there has been some discussion of delaying a phase-out of nuclear power.

Now they lost a reliable cheap baseload energy source.

Don't they know that winter is coming?


Europe's energy catastrophe

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Great interview examining how Europe's "elites" screwed thmselves.
Emphasis on "elites" and being out of touch and clueless...
From New York Magazine:

How Europe Stumbled Into an Energy Catastrophe
Since debuting on Substack in the spring of 2021, Doomberg — an anonymous group of writers whose avatar is a distinctive green chicken — has become one of the most popular financial publications on the site. The team has also become a prominent and distinctive voice on finance Twitter (a.k.a. FinTwit). Doomberg’s writers, who come from the world of commodities and heavy industry, deliver deeply informed, often withering analysis that focuses largely on energy policy, their area of expertise. Befitting the site’s name, they often take a darker (or perhaps just more realistic) view than many mainstream sources. Doomberg has been particularly bearish — and prescient — about the unfolding energy crisis in Europe, warning for months that the decision by European leaders to cut off Vladimir Putin from their markets after his invasion of Ukraine risked causing an economic crisis. I spoke via Zoom with one of the Doomberg writers (as represented by that green chicken) about how Russia’s oil industry has thrived despite sanctions, where Europe’s energy squeeze is headed, and why his site is, despite appearances, fundamentally optimistic

Needless to say, Doomberg has been added to my list 'o links - more:

You thought the U.S. and European attempts to use economic sanctions to cut off Russian oil from the global market was a catastrophic error. Why?
We wrote a piece called “Crazy Pills” where we outlined our views in this regard. This is the type of insight that can only come from direct experience in the commodity sector. It intuitively feels right that if we just choke off Putin’s energy-export volume, we will choke off his revenue. But that’s just not how commodities work, especially when you’re the swing producer like Russia is. If you’re a small country and you produce a de minimis amount of energy and it’s choked off by a naval blockade, the rest of the world can make that up and it’s not a big deal. But when you are the single largest exporter of energy that the world desperately and critically needs, you hold all the cards.

Much much more at the site.  Wonderful writing and some great observations.
Hopefully, Europe will wake up and toss these idiots out on their keisters.
And, to note, we are having these same problems here in the USofA

Pure Schadenfreude - from Breitbart:

Trump Vindicated: Germany Plays Blame Games as Merkel Party Attacked for ‘16 Years of Energy Policy Failure’
Germany’s economy and climate minister has angrily lashed out at Angela Merkel’s party, accusing it of being responsible for “16 years of energy policy failure”.

While the ongoing gas crisis across Europe gets steadily worse, political tensions in Germany appear to be growing, with the country’s economic and climate minister, Robert Habeck, angrily lashing out at his political rivals in the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), the party of former chancellor Angela Merkel.

Despite having been warned by then-President Donald Trump that relying on Russia for energy was endangering the security of both Germany and her allies, Merkel’s government presided over a green agenda-fueled shift away from domestic fossil fuel production that made the country ever more reliant on gas exports supplied by Moscow.

Now, in the wake of the Ukraine war, Germany has all but completely lost access to its supply of gas from Vladimir Putin, prompting fears that many will be unable to properly heat their homes this winter.

First-order thinking. This happens and therefore, let's do that.  No thought given to what the consequences of doing that might be. Repercussions.  Bunch of idiots who are credentialed so they think that they are smart.

From Pacific Power:

Public Safety Power Shutoff
Due to high, gusty winds a Public Safety Power Shutoff is in place in some areas in Oregon. Wind prone, rural areas that are deeper in the mountains are experiencing shutoffs first. As the windstorm progresses Friday, additional shutoffs will happen. Following are our best estimates of when power will be shut off to specific communities, however it might be sooner if conditions warrant:

Money earmarked for maintaining the infrastructure is being spent on windmills and such.
Alas, the people who set these policies are not being held accountable.

Looks like Governor Newsom has things under control. America's Newspaper of Record:

Newsom Promises There Will Be Enough Electricity For All Californians After Everyone Moves To Florida
Governor Gavin Newsom has declared a power grid emergency due to energy usage being at a 5-year high. Still, Newsom has assured everyone that they will have plenty of electricity to spare as soon as everyone leaves the state to live in Florida instead.

"Everyone, I understand your frustration, but by the end of the year with everyone leaving California, we're gonna cut our energy usage in half!" explained Governor Newsom. "In fact, so many are headed for Florida that the few of us who remain will be able to do cool stuff like use air conditioning and charge iPhones!"

Newsom explained that he's optimistic that as more and more abandon the unlivable, unaffordable mess he's making out of California, this will create a surplus in all resources for all who remain.

And things seem to be going as to plan.

A rational look at energy

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99% of what is bandied about these days is incredibly simplistic thinking.  First order.  This? Therefore that! Zero thought given to the consequences of implementing That — what happens when That does not work as planned. Most "modern" planners simply double-down on That — after all, they are the smartest people in the room and if That does not work, they just must have not been doing That hard or often enough.

Meet Vaclav Smil - from the Los Angeles Times:

The energy historian who says rapid decarbonization is a fantasy
Vaclav Smil rarely agrees to interviews. Too many in the media have portrayed him as a tool of Big Oil, he says — because he insists on pointing out how deeply dependent humanity is on fossil fuels and how difficult it will be to give them up.

The economist and professor emeritus at Canada’s University of Manitoba heats his house with solar energy. He’s no global warming denier. He recognizes the need to move away from plastics, but asks readers to note how often they touch plastic every day and ask themselves how rapid they think the switch can be.

His mission: lay out facts. “I’m not an optimist or a pessimist,” he likes to say. “I’m a scientist.”

A really good interview - lots of thoughtful examination.  One example:

[LA Times] Much of the climate debate, you write, is dominated by catastrophists who are certain humanity finds itself on the eve of destruction, and utopians who fervently believe that technology will save the human race. How should the rest of us think about real solutions to serious energy and environmental problems?

[Smil] Nothing can be more counterproductive than any certainty regarding complex affairs.
Uncertainty and unpredictability will always remain the most fundamental attributes of human existence.

And this observation (he lives in Manitoba):

[LA Times] You drive a Honda Civic with a small, efficient engine. While not opposed to electric vehicles, you take issue with those who buy them thinking they’re doing their part to solve global warming, mission accomplished.

[Smil] There are no EVs. They are battery vehicles reflecting the electricity’s origins. If I were to buy an EV in Manitoba, it would be a 100% hydroelectricity, truly zero carbon energy, car. In North China it is a 90% coal car, in France it is a 70% nuclear car, in Russia mostly a natural gas car and in Denmark a 50% wind car et cetera.

Good stuff - definitely going to look up his books.

Sounds like a great idea - except...  From the Denver, CO ABC affiliate:

Thousands of Xcel customers locked out of thermostats during 'energy emergency'
During the dog days of summer, it's important to keep your home cool. But when thousands of Xcel customers in Colorado tried adjusting their thermostats Tuesday, they learned they had no control over the temperatures in their own homes.

Temperatures climbed into the 90s Tuesday, which is why Tony Talarico tried to crank up the air conditioning in his partner's Arvada home.

"I mean, it was 90 out, and it was right during the peak period," Talarico said. "It was hot."

That's when he saw a message on the thermostat stating the temperature was locked due to an "energy emergency."

"Normally, when we see a message like that, we're able to override it," Talarico said. "In this case, we weren't. So, our thermostat was locked in at 78 or 79."

And I love the bias here - the headline says "Thousands" when in reality, it was 22,000
That is a lot of thousands, not just one or two...

Brilliant solution to the electric grid / gasoline automobile / climate change problem.
From America's Newspaper of Record:

With Energy Grid Unreliable, Governor Newsom Announces All Cars To Be Wind-Up By 2035
Governor Gavin Newsom announced Wednesday that he would be requiring all cars in the state of California to be fully wind-up by 2035. Experts agree that wind-up vehicles will put less strain on the state's weak power grid and help cut back on childhood obesity.

"I heard on the news that our state's electrical infrastructure cannot support millions of people charging their electric vehicles simultaneously," said a concerned Newsom. "Losing electricity at my winery is the last thing I want, so I've decided to alter the plan. New vehicles will no longer have to be electric."

"Instead," he continued, "all Californians will need to drive wind-up cars. Only then can we be truly independent of both gas and electricity."

More at the site.  Pure genius.  The newspaper, not Governor Newsom.

So which is it - California

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Cognitive dissonance - from the Washington Examiner:

Californians asked to keep AC at 78 and nix electric vehicle charges to spare grid
California grid operators warned residents to prepare for voluntary energy cuts and other emergency measures, such as turning down the air conditioning and forgoing electric vehicle charges, as the state braces for a period of excessive heat expected to last through Tuesday.

The California Independent System Operator said in a statement it is taking measures to bring “all available resources” online ahead of the heat wave, which is expected to be the longest and most severe high-heat period to hit the state so far this year.

An excessive heat warning is in effect through much of Southern California, with the National Weather Service warning of “dangerously hot” conditions that could climb as high as 115 degrees in some parts of the state.

Meanwhile, from the Bay Area NBC affiliate:

California Phasing Out Gas Vehicles in Climate Change Fight
California set itself on a path Thursday to end the era of gas-powered cars, with air regulators adopting the world's most stringent rules for transitioning to zero-emission vehicles.

The move by the California Air Resources Board to have all new cars, pickup trucks and SUVs be electric or hydrogen by 2035 is likely to reshape the U.S. auto market, which gets 10% of its sales from the nation's most populous state.

Hydrogen is a joke.  So how are they going to support electric cars when their power generation capacity is in the terlit. is not baseload.  Never has been.  Never will be.

Winter is coming - Europe

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They decided to go with and to snub Russia's natural gas.
Now?  It is August and people are starting to wake up and go ruh-roh...
From Russia Today:

Swiss police warn of winter riots
Swiss people may revolt and resort to looting if the Alpine nation is hit by a severe energy crunch this winter, the police chief of one of its cantons told local media on Saturday.

Fredy Fassler, the head of the Security and Justice Department in the canton of St. Gallen, told German-language daily Blick that a blackout would have “far-reaching consequences.”

Imagine, you can no longer withdraw money at the ATM, you can no longer pay with the card in the store or refuel your tank at the gas station. Heating stops working. It’s cold. Streets go dark. It is conceivable that the population would rebel or that there would be looting,” he said, adding that the country’s authorities should take measures to prepare for such extreme scenarios.

And a bit more:

Fassler’s comments come after Swiss authorities said last week that they may place restrictions on energy consumption this coming winter, signaling that “power shortages [are] among the most serious risks” for the landlocked country.

Earlier, Werner Luginbuhl, the head of Switzerland’s electricity regulator ElCom, complained that electricity was being used “completely thoughtlessly,” and urged citizens to stock up on candles and firewood due to possible power outages in the country this winter.

Classic liberal line there:  electricity was being used “completely thoughtlessly  Sure, blame the end user.  It is their fault.  Not yours, you are only the person in charge of producing it and seeing that it is a reliable utility.  Switzerland has lots of hydro power.  Why not nukes too? in one photo and caption

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People are touting hydrogen as the new "fuel"  What they are not saying is that we have no natural resources of hydrogen to consume.  Any hydrogen that we do have is either a byproduct of petroleum extraction or is manufactured either via steam reformation of methane or by brute-force electrolysis. Unfortunately, none of these are very efficient - electrolysis requires 52.5 kWh to produce one kilogram of hydrogen.  One kilogram of hydrogen holds 39.4 kWh of energy.  Steam reformation is a lot more efficient but you are destroying the natural gas to manufacture something that has a whole host of problems.  Natural gas (methane) is a much better fuel.

The IEEE/Spectrum Magazine has an article that really shows the cognitive dissonance at play:

2022—The Year the Hydrogen Economy Launched?
Among the technological visions that seem perpetually futuristic (think commercial nuclear fusion and maglev trains), the hydrogen economy has always been tantalizing. Hydrogen produced from renewable energy or nuclear power, with minimal greenhouse-gas emissions, could be piped or transported pretty much anywhere, using mostly existing infrastructure. It could power trucks, cars, planes, and ships and generate electricity, either in fuel cells or combustion turbines. In short, it could do anything fossil fuels do now, but with substantially reduced climate impact.

All fantasy and handwaving.  Grand new future...  And then there is this picture with this caption:


A massive substation at the coal-fired Intermountain Power Plant in Utah
links the facility to transmission lines that deliver power to Southern California.
A $2.65 billion project, just getting underway, will install facilities there to generate electricity
from cleanly produced hydrogen.

That is $2.6 billion dollars of yours and my money.  Taxpayer money being used to subsidize energy rat-holes.  Make a few people very rich and screw the rest of us.  Nuclear energy is the way to go - specifically Thorium.  Molten salt reactors.  The uranium lobby has been blocking these for years - time to pull their teeth.

In a nutshell?  Petroleum.  Drill baby, drill...
From the New York Times via the internet archive (defeats the paywall):

Mexico Sees Its Energy Future in Fossil Fuels, Not Renewables
On a recent scorching afternoon in his home state of Tabasco, the president of Mexico celebrated his government’s latest triumph: a new oil refinery.

Though not yet operational, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador hailed the refinery as a centerpiece in his grand campaign to secure Mexico’s energy independence.

“We ignored the sirens’ song, the voices that predicted, in good faith, perhaps, the end of the oil age and the massive arrival of electric cars and renewable energies,” he told the cheering crowd.

At a moment when scientists are sounding alarms about the need to move away from fossil fuels that contribute to catastrophic climate change, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has sparked a global shift in the opposite direction, with the United States and European countries moving to increase oil and gas production to counter bans on Russian energy.

But Mexico is going even further.

This is what intelligent leadership looks like.

The repercussions from this will be interesting to say the least - from Honolulu station KHON:

Hawaii gets last shipment of coal: Expect to pay more
Hawaii is receiving its final shipment of coal this week, which Gov. David Ige called a huge step forward in the state’s transition to clean energy.

Coal is the cheapest but dirtiest source of power for Oahu. A law put in place a couple of years ago will finally shut down the island’s last coal burning power plant.

“In its time, coal was an important resource for Hawai‘i and I’d like to thank the workers who have run our last remaining coal plant,” Ige said in a statement. “Renewable energy projects to replace coal are coming online with more on the way.”

Liberals - always doing things that SOUND good versus doing things that DO good.  No acountability for their actions.
Wishes do not come true just because you wish for them really really hard...
A bit more:

As KHON2’s Always Investigating reports, replacement power projects are behind schedule due to unexpected global events with supply chain issues, so Oahu residents should prepare to pay even more for electricity this fall.

In the meantime, consumers can either cut back on power, try solar and batteries, or pay more for oil-generated power — which costs as much as five times more than coal.

Emphasis mine. Once again, the renewables are not in place to take over and the alternative to coal:  costs as much as five times more than coal

The idea sounds good but the implementation leaves the Hawai'ian people in a world of hurt.

Necessarily skyrocket?  Barkey's turn of phrase:
This video was posted June 25th, 2013 by Rep. Darrell Issa but it was filmed in January 2008 as part of an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle editorial board. *Resident Biden is just Obama's 3rd term.

Follow the money - gas prices are down a bit because *Resident Biden is draining our Strategic Reserve.
He is also refilling it at market prices - something the mainstream media is not telling you:

More here - from MarketWatch, May 1st, 2020

Here are the challenges Trump will face in effort to rescue the oil market
Oil has suffered from eye-opening declines, with U.S. prices on track for a loss of 69% so far this year. There are actions the U.S. may take to help stabilize the market, but efforts may come too late, and none are without obstacles.

The recent oil-price collapse significantly raises the likelihood that the Trump administration will move to lessen regulatory burdens placed on the U.S. oil industry, says David McCullough, partner in the energy and infrastructure practice of law firm Eversheds Sutherland.

This was a market correction and during this time, President Trump wanted to use the low prices to top off our Strategic Reserve.  But...

Filling up the SPR, to the tune of 77 million barrels of available storage space, may be the most effective option for the government to influence prices, says Paul Sheldon, chief geopolitical adviser for analytics at S&P Global Platts. It could also buy up to 365 million barrels of unproduced domestic crude, “utilizing legal authority to raise the government stockpile to 1 billion barrels.” The SPR had 636 million barrels as of April 24.

Congress would need to provide funds for this, and that appears improbable, given objections from Democrats, Sheldon says.

Those nutty Democrats - always a game to them.  Rope.  Tree. Some assembly required.
These people are idiots.

Heat waves everywhere.  It's summer.  Increased demand for air conditioning.
Slight problem - from MSN:

There’s such a thing as too much sun for solar panels, and Europe’s solar industry is starting to buckle
With clear skies and near-constant sunlight, European summers should be high season for the solar power industry.

But while solar panels feed on sunlight, Europe is in the grips of a record-breaking heatwave, and extreme heat is no friend to solar energy producers.

The heat that has been scorching parts of the U.K. and western and southern Europe has set temperature recordsstarted wildfiresdamaged infrastructure, and is leaving behind a mounting death toll.

High temperatures have sent electricity demand in Europe soaring, and combined with an ongoing shortage of natural gas on the continent since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, renewable energy sources such as solar have had to step up.

And the problem:

Solar panels around . the . world are manufactured and tested to function optimally at around 77°F, or 25°C, and the range in which most solar panels can still operate at peak efficiency is between 15°C and 35°C. Any hotter, and utility and installation companies warn that a panel’s efficiency can start dropping fast.

So... Fine in theory but when you really really need them, they are running at 25% lower output. You can cool them - water cooling is easy to do as there is only one active side but that is expensive and requires energy.  A lot of half-baked ideas are being rushed to market because of government subsidies (read: taxpayer dollars).  How about nuclear? Proven technology. Safe (especially LFTR)  Instead, these unelected government officials are blowing taxpayer dollars on pipe dreams.

Not as bad as it initially looked.
One transformer involved but the others took up the slack and there was no interruption.
From Reuters:

Hoover Dam transformer fire put out without interruption to power grid
A transformer caught fire at Nevada's Hoover Dam on Tuesday and was quickly extinguished by the fire brigade without any injuries or interruption to the power grid, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation said.

Video circulating on social media, apparently taken by a tourist, showed a small explosion and smoke and fire coming from the base of the dam, the largest in the United States and the source for a 2,080-megawatt hydroelectric plant, enough for about 1.3 million households.

Photos at the site.

Hoover Dam - fire?

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Generator hall - looks pretty major:

Las Vegas Review-Journal is reporting:

Explosion reported at Hoover Dam
Boulder City authorities said they were responding to a report of an emergency call at Hoover Dam on Tuesday morning.

“Boulder City Fire Department is en route to an emergency call at Hoover Dam,” a Twitter alert from the city said. “No further information is available at this time.”

Further details were not released, but the alert came as a Twitter user identified as Kristy Hairston posted a short video clip of a small fire and a large cloud of black smoke rising from a segment of the dam structure.

This is just happening so no details as yet.  Generator hall so it will impact their power production.

Where is their baseload?  Wind and solar are not baseload.  They can not provide power 24/7

From ERCOT (Electric Reliability Council of Texas) - their power grid manager - Monday, July 10th:

ERCOT Issues Conservation Appeal to Texans and Texas Businesses
With extreme hot weather driving record power demand across Texas, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) is issuing a Conservation Appeal, asking Texans and Texas businesses to voluntarily conserve electricity

There is a chart at the site - their installed capacity of wind is 35,162MW - the available power is 2,698 or about 8%   Solar is doing a bit better at 81%.  They need to cut the crap and build some nukes.  LFTR - Thorium is the way to go...

High gas prices? *Resident Biden:

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20220621-fracking.jpg - in Texas

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Working out just as planned.  Oh? What? You expected it to be cheaper?  Silly prole...
What part of "necessarily skyrocket" did you fail to grasp?

From The Dallas Morning News:

Texans are getting stuck with high electricity bills
With such pain at the pump right now and our struggling economy, it has been easy to miss what is happening with Texas electricity prices, which, unfortunately, is even worse. While gasoline prices are about 60% higher than a year ago, retail electricity rates are up even more, about 70% over this time last year.

They are a liberal news outlet so they are quick to blame the Russians and Ukraine when in reality, Biden campaigned on getting us off fossil fuels and during his first day in office, he signed: "Executive Order on Protecting Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science to Tackle the Climate Crisis" which set us back 20 years and included this gem: "Sec. 6.  Revoking the March 2019 Permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline"  The oil still moves from Canada to the refineries in the US but it does so now by railroad.  This costs about six times more than a pipeline.  Profits? Warren Buffet and Blackrock. Biden's buddies.

We will own nothing and we will be happy.  Riiiggggghhhhhhtttt...

Big weather in Ohio

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Was seeing that they had over 280K customers without power after 24 hours.  Had to be a storm.  Yep...

From FOX Weather:

Derecho knocks out power to more than 500,000 from Midwest to Ohio Valley
The National Weather Service has confirmed that a powerful cluster of thunderstorms known as a derecho was responsible for downing trees and knocking out power to more than a half-million Americans from the Midwest to the Ohio Valley on Monday.

In order for the event to be classified as a derecho, the swath of straight-line wind damage caused by the storms needs to cover a distance of at least 400 miles and include wind gust reports stronger than 58 mph.

It also must include several well-separated wind gusts stronger than 75 mph.

Here is the power outage map for this morning - 18 hours after the event:


I thought that this new green energy was supposed to be more reliable?  Blowing our money on wishful thinking and not investing it in maintaining the infrastructure we already have.  Hell of a way to run a nation.

Gas prices - some background

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Ace of Spades has the skinny on gasoline prices - the people in DC are beyond stupid
Beyond clueless:

Joe Biden Shut Domestic Oil Production Down. Now, With His Presidency Dying Faster Than His Dying Brain, He Begs US Companies to Start Drilling Again-- and Finds Out That Will Take Years
Dear Diary: Today I found out it's a lot easier to shut down domestic oil production with a series of executive orders and policy directives than it is to put oil back in production again.

Via Twitchy, the Financial Times discovers that when Pop-Pop burned the US's domestic production capacity down, he didn't have a plan for starting it back up again.

He just thought that "green energy" would come on line because we needed it to.

And from Atomic Fungus:

There isn't a magical valve you can turn. Producing oil from shale is a technologically complex process, and it takes men and equipment to make it happen. Because the Go Brandon regime issued all those executive orders meant to strangle the production of oil, production sites were shut down. People were laid off. Leased equipment was returned to its owners; surplus equipment was sold.

The banner year of 2019 when the USA barely started to become a net exporter of oil did not happen because President Donald Trump figured out we needed oil and said, "Okay, you guys get going, now." That happened because right after he was inaugurated in 2017 he issued the executive orders that made it possible for the USA to produce all that oil. It took more than two years for that to bear fruit; and in fact what Trump did was just to put icing on the cake, one that had been started by George Bush and--whether due to ignorance or indifference--was (mostly) left the hell alone by Boss Tweek.

Go Brandon comes along and smashes the whole works with his bullshit--and then, when it's politically expedient, thinks that they can just throw a switch and start pumping oil again? The various people comprising the Go Brandon regime are fucking morons, and I think this proves quite handily what Sarah Hoyt is always saying, about how they don't know the first damned thing about how anything is actually produced in this country.

Exactly.  The people making these decisions are highly credentialed but they are not educated and they certainly are not smart or well informed.

From the Los Angeles, CA NBC affiliate:

SoCal Edison Reports ‘Circuit Activity' Close to Start of Laguna Niguel Fire
Southern California Edison says it has notified state utility regulators that "circuit activity" was detected at about the same time a brush fire started in the hills above the Orange County coast and quickly burned uphill into a neighborhood.

The Coastal Fire was reported around 2:45 p.m. Wednesday in Aliso Woods Canyon near Laguna Niguel. Fanned by ocean winds, flames tore through thick brush in the canyon and climbed over the top of the ridgeline and cast wind-strewn embers onto homes.

When will they learn to stop blowing taxpayer money on solar and wind - these are both will-'o'-the-wisp ephemera that are not baseload generation. Spend your money on rebuilding the infrastructure.  I know that is sexy - it looks good to the proles but that needs to be the icing on the cake. Something you do after everything else has been taken care of.

Another round of lawsuits (here for starters) will be in order this fall - this fire is just the beginning...

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