Plunging Towards Darkness: Germany Sees Week-Long Wind, Sun Lull As Energy Supply Dwindles

Energy policy is sliding Germany ever closer to failure and disaster…”more CO2 emitted per kilowatt hour in electricity generation than India or China”… “landed in 127th place out of 147 countries in the ranking.”

Earlier this year, even though the natural gas supply from Russia had been stopped, Germany remained hell bent on moving ahead and shutting down its three remaining nuclear power plants by January 1, 2023.

But common sense this time did eventually succeed penetrating through the skulls of the green energy fanatics in command, and so just weeks ago the German government postponed the shutdown 90 days to April 1, 2023. Without the three nuclear plants running through the winter, Germany would face the real prospect of widespread blackouts. It was clear that wind and solar power would not be able to keep the lights on in the country.

Little wind, sun over one week

Today Blackout News here reports how there’s been hardly any sun and wind for a week now. And though this is not unusual in winter, it is currently “causing enormous problems for German energy policy. Because without wind and sun, solar and wind power plants generate very little electricity. Last week, their share was sometimes less than ten percent of the total electricity demand.”

A look at the Agora site, which monitors German energy production, bears this out:

The upper solid line shows Germany’s power demand, the yellow shaded areas show the amount generated by solar energy. The light and dark blue indicate onshore and offshore wind power production respectively. Source: Agora.

Only over the past few hours has Germany’s 60 gigawatts of installed capacity of wind turbines begun to generate any real power. Solar energy production won’t be coming back for another 2 to 3 months. Yet, the German government still is convinced that Germany can still get along without fossil fuel energies.

No answers from government

Germany daily “Bild” wanted to know from Economics Minister Robert Habeck how this is supposed to work in Germany in the future. According to Bild, “Habeck did not want to comment on ‘concrete weather conditions’, but that ‘precautions’ had been taken for such cases, for which ‘other capacities’ were available, according to the comment.”

It remains a mystery which “other capacities” Habeck was referring to.

Blackout News comments:

With the shutdown of the last nuclear and coal-fired power plants, Germany will soon lack the necessary backup power to bridge such dark lulls. The further expansion of renewable energies will not help in this situation, because if 1000 wind turbines do not generate electricity, 3000 turbines will not generate any more either. The alternative would be to build new gas-fired power plants. But these also emit CO₂. The far bigger problem: There is not enough gas.”

With Germany deep in an energy crunch, the government will have to go begging for energy from its neighbors, like buying coal-fired power from Poland, or nuclear power from France.

Blackout News summarizes the results of Germany’s energy strategy for November:

Germany emitted more CO2 per kilowatt hour in electricity generation than India, China and South Africa, and landed in 127th place out of 147 countries in the ranking.”

It’s a Failure.

And things are likely to get far worse before they get better. Meteorologists and models are forecasting bitter cold weather over the coming days, and not the mild conditions politicians were praying for earlier.

7 responses to “Plunging Towards Darkness: Germany Sees Week-Long Wind, Sun Lull As Energy Supply Dwindles”

  1. John Hultquist

    One weather service I found shows temperatures starting to get seriously cold on Thursday, the 8th. Next week — Tuesday through Saturday — looks to be serious for anyone with little heat in the house.
    At the moment (5 PM Pacific Time in Washington State) the outside temp is -5.5°C.
    Inside: 21°C.
    Good luck to all.

  2. dm

    April Fools Day is now the date for closing German nuke generators. How ironic!

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  4. oldscouser

    Maximum winter demand use dto be about 81GW in Germany, but it looks to be about 76GW nowadays. For comparison installed onshore and offshore wind capacity is very nearly 64GW and installed solar capacity is 65GW. As the chart shows when the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine the output from unrelaibles can be trivial.

    1. Jimfrey

      I believe that the term “installed capacity” is misleading; it implies that there is power available at the touch of a switch. I would argue that “installed capacity” should actually be called “theoretical capacity”; the only measurable installed capacity is that which wind and/or solar is guaranteed 100% to produce 24/7.

      1. voza0db

        It’s just like with the batteries of EV’s!

        A 100 mWh battery (installed capacity) never provides that amount of energy… and you will never be able to make 500 Km with it!

        In reality if one can use ~80/85% of that, one is a lucky one.

  5. voza0db

    The far bigger problem: There is not enough gas.

    Wait the americans aren’t selling enough Freedom Gas to Germany?!

    Go figure…

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