By Dr. Sebastian Lüning und Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt
(Translated/edited by P Gosselin)
Konrad Kleinknecht is a professor of experimental physics and researched at the universities of Heidelberg, Dortmund, Harvard, Mainz and Munich. His publications in the fields of high-energy physics have been awarded top prizes, among them the Leibniz-Prize of the DFS, the Energy Prize of the European Physical Society and the Stern Gerlach Medal of the Germany Physical Society (DPG).
Kleinknecht has thoroughly examined the German Energiewende (transition from fossil fuels and nuclear energy over to renewables) and given the project an overall grade of “poor”.
In his book Risky Energiewende: The way out of the deadend he presents his analysis to the public. In the book’s description we find:
The exit from the use of nuclear power in Germany was decided at a frantic speed in the summer of 2011. Now we are realizing that there is no realistic plan for revamping the energy supply within the set timeframe of ten years. For revamping the entire electricity supply, and with it the economy, the time period is too short. Missing are the solid empirical grounds on which the questions of energy supply reliability, financial feasibility, the impacts on the economic development and social justice are examined. Thus the Energiewende risks failing due to its contradictions. Even the responsible federal minister for economics and energy, Sigmar Gabriel, said in April 2014: ‘The truth is that the Energiewende is on the verge of failure.’
In his book Konrad Kleinknecht attempts to name the problems and to provide the answers. For him the following questions remain: What possibilities do we have to replace a part of the energy supply with wind power and solar energy? Which sources of electricity offer a reliable supply? Can we do without coal power? Do we need new national power transmission lines? How can we store electric energy? How high is the risk of a blackout during nights when the wind is still? Will electricity prices keep rising? With a fundamental reform of the EEG renewable energy feed-in act, is it still possible to avert the huge risks of the Energiewende?
The energy supply must serve the common good and be beneficial for Germany as an industrial nation. A blackout would be a catastrophe for the entire country, and it must be avoided under all circumstances. The author tells us how this can be achieved in his book.”
The German language book Risiko Energiewende: Wege aus der Sackgasse is available at Amazon for €19,99.
21 responses to “Renewables Flop: Former Harvard Professor Gives Germany’s ‘Energiewende’ A Grade Of “D” …In A “Deadend”!”
One month before the Paris World Communist Revolution, ahem, Paris Warmunist International I mean, a French journalist makes the BIG mistake of publishing his climate-sceptic book. Promptly gets fired from state TV France2.
This is how the media and state media purge their ranks from honest people, with the goal of achieving a 100% liar quota.
Duh! A meteorologist, not Journalist. Sorry.
One would think that the Global Warming Industry would refrain from firing a few meteorologist who dispute GW dogma. That would allow them to say 97% of meteorologists are in agreement with the assertions of Man Made Global Warming.
100% in agreement sounds too much like a North Korean election outcome. Then again, so does 97%
Just run the numbers!!
For information on Renewable Energy performances and capacity factors derived from Renewable Energy industry sources across Europe and for Germany in particular see:
These costing comparisons strip out all the positive profitability effects of government regulation and subsidies that are being applied to Renewable Energy. These are the only things that still make Renewables a viable business proposition.
Accounting for the capacity factors, (the actual electrical output as compared to the Nameplate capacity of the Renewable installation) that as they are reported by the Renewable Industry, the overall capital cost of all European Renewable Energy installations averages out at about €29billion / Gigawatt, whereas the cost of a conventional gas-fired generation is about €1billion / Gigawatt.
The overall capital value accounting for capacity of Renewables at €29billion / Gigawatt is derived from the combination of:
Onshore Windpower ~€14.2 billion/GW
Offshore Windpower ~€41.4 billion/GW
On Grid Solar Power ~€48.5 billion/GW
According to these Renewable Energy supporting sources by 2014 European Union countries had invested approximately €1 trillion €1,000,000,000,000 in large scale Renewable Energy installations. This may well be an underestimate. Overall wind and solar power capacity across Europe is ~18%
This expenditure has provided a nameplate electrical generating capacity of about 216 Gigawatts, nominally about ~22% of the total European generation needs of some 1000 Gigawatts.
The actual measured output by 2014 from Renewable Industry sources has been 38 Gigawatts or ~3.8% of Europe’s electricity requirement, at a capacity factor of ~18% overall.
Accordingly the whole 1000 Gigawatt fleet of European electricity generation installations could have been replaced with dispatchable, lower capital cost Gas-fired installations for the €1trillion of capital costs already expended on Renewable Energy in Europe.
However Renewable Energy production is dependent on the seasons, local weather conditions and the rotation of the earth, day and night. The Renewable Energy contribution to the electricity supply grid is inevitably erratic, intermittent and non-dispatchable. It is therefore much less useful than dispatchable sources of electricity, which can be engaged whenever necessary to match demand and maintain grid stability.
So that 3.8% Renewable Energy contribution to the grid is often not available when needed and obversely its mandatory use and feed-in obligations can cause major grid disruption if the Renewable Energy contribution is suddenly over abundant.
The Renewable Energy industry could not exist without the Government mandated subsidies and preferential tariffs on which it depends. So it is not a truly viable business proposition
Viewed from the point of view of the engineering viability of a nation’s electrical grid, Renewable Energy would never be part of the generating mix without its Government mandate and Government market interference.
And the burden of these additional Renewable Energy costs is both imposed on consumers via the increase in their utility bills and hugely damages the viability of European industries.
So the Green thinking especially in Germany in its enthusiasm to save the world from an indefinable but probably minimal threat, will destroy Western civilisation long before the world fails from excessive overheating from CO2 emissions.
Cost comparisons are have been clearly made by the US EIA
US EIA electricity_generation.pdf 2015 Table 1
“Just run the numbers!!”
Sorry, but your numbers are misleading.
adding up the costs so far has utterly no meaning for the future costs.
and you claim EIA numbers to be “neutral” when it is simple to show, that the have been completely false and utterly anti-renewables in the past.
“The Renewable Energy industry could not exist without the Government mandated subsidies and preferential tariffs on which it depends.”
This is also false. Your own numbers show, that on shore wind is cheaper than new coal.
And in Chile, wind and solar just won the auctions, even for electricity at night!
Keep on dreaming the green (money) dream.
“What possibilities do we have to replace a part of the energy supply with wind power and solar energy?”
The poor Professor should look at the facts. We already get a significant amount of electricity from alternative sources (about 25% in 2014) and the parts of wind and solar are growing fast.
Our neighbour Denmark is showing us, that 30% wind is possible easily.
If you want to look at other power uses, you have to be careful. Solar PV will rarely heat houses, neither will wind. In those aspects, saving energy will have a big part, as will more efficient systems.
Keep tuned, but do not forget what has already been done.
Hello sod! You are to be congratulated on you tenacious grip on stupidity.
Here in the UK today 5600 wind turbines are producing 0.49gw or 1.21 percent of total demand at 40.52gw.
This meagre return from our mega investment has been recorded day after day for months now.
“This meagre return from our mega investment has been recorded day after day for months now.”
It is summing up to relevant percentage parts. You are only looking at low numbers. That is a cheap trick.
Head in the sand, as always SOD
“We already get a significant amount of electricity from alternative sources (about 25% in 2014) and the parts of wind and solar are growing fast.”
As usual the Fabian warmunists concentrate on electricity which is ONE SEVENTH of the energy needs of an industrial nation.
Showing, BTW, that the renewables subsidy campaigns are in fact just a fetish for the achievement of a different goal (NWO world communism).
In related news, subsidized American luxury “car maker” Tesla Motors manages to ship about 17,000 (!!!) of their contraptions in one month! Not bad for a token activity that serves as window dressing for a Ponzi scheme.
The cars might not be burning gasoline, but Tesla Motors surely burns a lot of Federal Reserve Notes.
Oh sorry, 17,000 in one QUARTER. Natch.
” electricity which is ONE SEVENTH of the energy needs of an industrial nation.”
That is a garbage calculation. You need much less electricity to run a car, than you need petrol.
A majority of heating will be replaced by insulation and *shock* saving energy.
Industry gets only 3% of its energy from “renewables” (source: Statistisches Bundesamt). In part because the “renewables” can’t be built, maintained or recycled without reliable sources of energy such as coal, oil, gas and nuclear.
And it’s not like 3% of industry could run on renewables. 0% of industry can operate entirely on renewables. Germany without industry is unimaginable. It is impossible.
Energiewende is just another mechanism to de-industrialise Germany; originally a penalty to punish Germans for being too powerful. It’s been going on for a century; on and off.
One of the questions:
“How can we store electric energy?”
One answer is coal. It is quite stable. Stable is important.
Modern societies use massive amounts of electricity and less modern ones intend to use more. When a massive amount of energy is stored in a battery, flywheels, molten salt, compressed Hydrogen, compressed natural gas, and so on, there is the accompanying possibility of its rapid release. That’s not good.
What are Konrad Kleinknecht’s suggestions for storage?
Trying to get a stable continuous supply from 2 erratic sources is impossible. You need a base of stable supply and a source which can vary, e.g. coal and gas as in many countries or for very low emissions nuclear and hydroelectricity which was so successful in France, Sweden and Switzerland. So why change?
Sadly every country in Europe, except Poland, is in the grip of sodness, where people with no knowledge demand the impossible, whatever the cost. It will all end in blackouts.
“This meagre return from our mega investment has been recorded day after day for months now.”
Guess what, real scientists have looked at that problem and they came up with solutions.
For the big warmunist world revolution in Paris they now wheel out the whole old freak family, here, everyone’s darling Mr. Sunshine Paul Ehrlich , this time saying, having babies is like throwing garbage in your neighbours’ yard.
You gotta love him. I suppose this is Yiddish humour.
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