Things are worse than we thought when it comes to renewable energy in Europe. Online Forbes has an article titled: Requiem For Spanish Wind?
The pain in Spain cannot be sustained. That’s the conclusion of the Spanish government, which is slashing its subsidies for wind power and other renewable energy as part of a deficit-fighting move. Spain is the latest European country to cut subsidies for clean energy — following similar moves in the U.K., Germany and Italy — because they’re driving up costs for consumers. […]
It’s a sad end for a program once heralded as a model by the Obama administration for its own renewables initiative. Yet it’s also not a surprising one. […] Without government subsidies, it simply isn’t a viable business.
Germans thinking twice about sacrificing natural beauty
Meanwhile Germany’s online Spiegel is also taking a critical look at Germany’s wind industry in a piece (in English) called Eco-Blowback: Mutiny in the Land of Wind Turbines. It’s a good summation of how the wind energy is doing in Germany so far. Public resistance is reaching ever higher levels.
With the prime coastal locations already taken, operators are increasingly turning their attention to areas further inland. Even valuable tourist regions — such as the Moselle valley, the Allgäu and the foothills of the Alps — are to be sacrificed. […]
Michael Succow, a prominent German environmentalist and winner of the Alternative Nobel Prize, is also threatening to abandon ship. He fears soulless stretches of land and lost tranquility. […]
And his fears are not unfounded. Back in the 1980s, tree-huggers put up Aeroman wind turbines in their front yards — but those days are long gone. Just the masts of today’s wind turbines can reach up to 160 meters high. When active, they kill so many insects that the sticky mass slows the rotors down.
Moselle, Allgäu, foothills of the Alps? Nothing like sacrificing national and natural treasures for the sake of a neurotic climate obsession.
And I wonder how long it’s going to take other countries before they wake up and notice this isn’t working out. My home state of Vermont, for example, is planning to install an array of solar panels along an interstate. I wonder who is going to shovel the snow off 6 months a year? It’s amazing how duped and caught up with an idea seemingly intelligent people can get.
Here’s how Vermont’s windparks are doing (see video), hat-tip Bernd Felsche:
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15 responses to “Forbes Asks: “Requiem For Spanish Wind?”…High Costs, Poor Performance And Public Protest Dog Wind Power”
That, in a country where protected landscapes include the appearance of building so changing roof tiles requires paperwork engaging 5 levels of government (town, district, state, federal and EU); if not also UNESCO.
And in such areas, they erect wind parks. If not in the areas, then on the fringes so that no horizon remains unpolluted.
BTW Pierre: Windfarms in Vermont can’t actually supply much electricity because the rural electricity grid is only provided with enough “copper” for the rural consumers; not for megawatts of (sporadic) generation. There are suddenly “unexpected” costs for installing new high-tension power lines … all over the mountains. (e.g.)
What a bunch of con-men. They say they didn’t know. The truth is that they didn’t really care, and that they were going to put those things up no matter what – it’s all about pretending to be saving the planet and patting yourself on the back.
In the end it’s the consumer getting stabbed in the back and his wallet pickpocketed.
Pierre, what’s your take on this?
Very simple. The PIK scientists are full of crap. After 20 years, they have yet to produce a single model that has gotten it right.
Wind industry already plans to invade pristine countryside with mobile forces.
The ideas just keep getting wackier. The vehicle probably costs more than what the generator will ever yield.
One of my favorites: Using the kinetic energy of raindrops.
None of them seem to know what they are talking about. The one guy at the 1:38 mark saying he’d prefer to adjust the conventional energies in favor of renewables. That’s what they are doing in Germany, and now many of these conventional stations are losing money, and being planned for shutdown, thus leaving the grid in jeopardy. I thought things were poorly planned in Europe – Vermont’s wind plan looks far worse then anything I’ve seen in Europe. They’re in for a big surprise. Read here: http://www.thegwpf.org/german-energy-companies-threaten-shutdown-power-plants/
Listen to that sleazeball at the 2:03 mark – Greenspeak: “So it isn’t that it wasn’t foreseen. It was based on the information that you know and can try to foresee, but ….”
Well, the information that you tried but failed to foresee means it’s information you didn’t foresee – period. How can electric power grid engineers not have seen that the grid there was inadequate? This is basic power grid design and I’m sure even a power engineer from the 1930s could have told them it wasn’t going to work.
My bet is that they knew it, but didn’t give a damn. They were all consumed by the idea of looking like they were doing something really wonderful. What a-holes.
You can’t see what you don’t want to find.
ISTM that the USA’s wind industry can’t recruit competent, professional engineers. With the blame-shifting back and forth; and the public administrator’s apparent incompetence as demonstrated by suggesting that supply priority be given to renewables over reliables, the inevitable situation is as that developing in Germany (as per your preceding comment) making reliable suppliers economically unviable because the subsidised suppliers are granted a monopoly of convenience.
Meanwhile Italian Mafia does money laundering by investing in renewable energy…
“that mafia groups in Italy are investing more and more in the renewable energy sector, especially wind power plants to take advantage of loans and European aid generously provided by the Member States, which allows them to launder proceeds of crime through legitimate businesses – says Europol”
Notice that the state must make it sound as if the money laundering was the main purpose. It is not. Getting access to cheap EU credits and taxpayer subsidies is.
A mafia is a black market enterprise; it will do business that the state forbids; but it will also do any legal business if money can be made – IF the profits are worthwhile.
Wind energy contracts lay out a span of time for the developers to get their turbine up and generating electricity. According to Roger McEowen, professor of agricultural law at Iowa State University in Ames, there needs to be protection for the landowner in case something goes wrong and the tower never goes up. “Two to four years is adequate contract length for the development phase,” he says. If it takes more time than that, the landowner must be free to move on to another developer, he says. He also warns potential wind tower hosts to build relief against lowered yields into the contract in case any road building causes soil compaction or other problems in the fields. And it is a good idea to have the number of towers, their locations and the road plans presented early in the process so landowners have time to consider possible physical impediments to their operations, he says. Industry experts recommend towers be built at least 1,300 feet from any houses for safety reasons, he says. He suggests that a mile or more would be better, considering possible nuisances such as noise and “shadow flicker,” which occurs when the sun passes behind the rotating blades. Keep in mind also that the towers can be a nuisance to neighbors, he says.
Safety distances in Germany are competency of the states and have been reduced over time; they’re now at 300m in some states; about 900 ft. At the same time Nacelles and wing span have been growing. Big Government. No rights.