Discusses the recent news that renewable energy (including hydro as well) now supplies more electricity to the US grid than does nuclear power. The post then goes on to list some large solar and wind projects in advanced stages of the development pipeline as a reason for being optimistic that the solar and wind side of the renewables is rapidly growing in scale.
Makes the case for coupling hydrogen production with wind farms in order to deliver more dispatchable power; lessen the need for transmission capacity; as well as other important bottom line benefits.
Summarizes the new green jobs study by the Brookings Institute, noting that the study reports that the driving force behind the U.S. “clean economy” over the last decade has been emerging energy technologies. It is these dozen or so “hot” segments within the larger green economy where most of the growth has been concentrated. This suggests that, in order to build a cleantech economy, the U.S. should put primary emphasis on new, technology-intensive, energy-related sectors.
This post looks at the message promoted by the gas industry that natural gas is the necessary complement to renewables such as solar and wind, because the latter are variable and thus need a backup power source that can quickly be brought on line. There are other and perhaps even better ways of addressing variability that also need looking at.
This post answers the recently much hyped focus on wind’s variability problem, quantifying it in clear cost terms that put it in perspective. The post helps clarify the differences between energy, capacity and the ancillary services surrounding ensuring capacity and goes on to answer some of the other related problems that have been alleged for wind energy as its penetration level increases.
Wind farms up here in the Pacific Northwest may soon be shut down temporarily because there is no transmission capacity to move this green renewable power to where it is needed. A record snowfall in the mountains at the headwaters of the Columbia river system is about to begin melting and will send a surge of water down the river. Because this water cannot be sent over the spill ways without endangering already endangered Salmon and Steelhead fish it needs to be run through the turbines. There is just too much power for the regional markets and the existing transmission infrastructure to handle and thus wind farms are likely to be idled. What this exposes is the need for an improved Ultra high voltage long distance electric transmission network that is capable of moving surplus power from one region to another.
This post looks at some of the financing and perception challenges that the renewable energy sectors need to meet in order to compete with the much better organized and currently profitable fossil energy sectors. The author would like to see a greater focus in the renewable sector on the specific needs of the companies in the industry and makes the argument that companies in the renewable sector need to do a better job in how they present their case if they want to compete with the red hot oil & gas sectors with investors.
The WINDPOWER 2011 Conference & Exhibition, organized by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), is coming up this month and will run from May 22nd through the 25th, and will be held this year in Anaheim, California. On Sunday May 22nd, it will kick off with a Careers in Wind Summit, a full, one-day event that precedes WINDPOWER, and consists of two concurrent parts: the WINDPOWER “Careers in Wind” Educational Seminars, and the WINDPOWER “Careers in Wind” Job Fair & Exhibition.
While other parts of the world are busy actually building national Ultra High Voltage (UHV) transmission infrastructure the US continues to do noting more substantial than litigate. A UHV super grid would be able to move renewable energy from where it is abundant to where people live and work, and do so at an economic cost. This kind of national electric energy infrastructure would enable solar, wind, hydro and geothermal generated electric power to reach market. It is a critical piece of the kind of future energy infrastructure we will need in order to continue to prosper. John goes into a lot of detail and provides numerous links to examples and more in depth reading on this very important subject.