Conservative media is hoping to frame the Eurasian energy crunch as a problem of renewables. It is specifically not so.

Bloomberg:

Coal India Ltd., the world’s top miner of the fuel, has temporarily stopped supplies to industrial users as the nation’s energy crisis escalates.

The move to prioritize supplies to power plants is aimed at helping boost depleted inventories that are putting continued operations at risk. But it could worsen the situation for other industries such as aluminum smelters, cement producers and steel mills, leaving them with a difficult choice of looking for costlier options or slashing production.

ndustrial activity from China to Europe is taking a beating as fuel prices soar and governments curtail power to large users to prioritize supplies for homes. In India, an economic recovery has sent demand for electricity soaring just as the supply of coal slumps.  

DT Next:

Normally, the peak wind power generation season ends by mid-September, but the delayed SW monsoon withdrawal has come as a blessing in disguise for the Tangedco with windmills along with solar plants supplying nearly 30 per cent of the state’s daily power requirement.

Dr S Balachandran, deputy director-general of Meteorology, Regional Meteorological Centre, said that South West monsoon withdrawal has been taking place. “We are expecting withdrawal of the monsoon by October 15 to 18 in the state,” he said.
Indian Wind Power Association Chairman Prof Dr K Kasthurirangaian said that after a slump in the generation in the first week of October, the wind power generation has picked up. “We are getting good southwesterly winds this month too. Even last year, we got good winds during October and it helped in better generation,” he said.
An expert in the wind power sector said, “Any delay in the SW monsoon withdrawal will help boost wind generation.” Tantransco officials said that wind power generation has helped the state manage the coal shortage crisis better.
“All the private thermal power stations supplying to Tangedco are dependent on the imported coal. With the cost of the imported coal going up and the coal shortage, the private plants are not able to supply power to meet our demand. Coastal Energen and IL&FS thermal plants in the state are under shutdown,” the official said.

Video above should start at 55:24 with a talk by Amory Lovins.

Bloomberg:

A potential new SPD-lead German government wants to abandon coal as a power source eight years earlier than planned, a move that would be a big win for the planet but a challenge for a country already struggling with energy supplies.  

“In order to reach the climate goals, an earlier exit from coal-fired power is needed, ideally by 2030,” the parties wrote as they set out basic principles for an alliance. 

Details of how Europe’s largest economy plans to shed its reliance on coal will be hammered out in formal talks between the Social Democratic Party, the Greens and the Free Democrats set to start as early as next week. An accelerated expansion of energy from renewable sources like wind and solar is likely to be part of the plan. 

Amory Lovins in Beyond Nuclear International:

The view that climate protection requires expanding nuclear power has a basic flaw in its prevailing framing: it rarely if ever relates climate-effectiveness to cost or to speed—even though stopping climate change requires scaling the fastest and cheapest solutions. By focusing on carbon but only peripherally mentioning cost and speed, and by not relating these three variables, this approach misframes what climate solutions must do.

The climate argument for using nuclear power assumes that since nuclear power generation directly releases no CO2, it can be an effective climate solution. It can’t, because new (or even existing) nuclear generation costs more per kWh than carbon-free competitors—efficient use and renewable power—and thus displaces less carbon per dollar(or, by separate analysis, per year): less not by a small margin but by about an order of magnitude (factor of roughly ten). As I noted in an unpublished 17 Aug letter to The New York Times:

[The Times’s 14 August] editorial twice extols “wind, solar and nuclear power” as if all three had equal climate benefits. They don’t. New electricity costs 3–8 (says merchant bank Lazard) or 5–13 (says Bloomberg New Energy Finance) times less from unsubsidized wind and solar than from nuclear power. Renewables thus displace 3–13 times more fossil-fueled generation per dollar than nuclear, and far sooner. Efficiency is even cheaper, beating most existing reactors’ operating costs. Competing or comparing all options…saves more carbon.

Thus nuclear power not only isn’t a silver bullet, but, by using it, we shoot ourselves in the foot, thereby shrinking and slowing climate protection compared with choosing the fastest, cheapest tools. It is essential to look at nuclear power’s climate performance compared to its or its competitors’ cost and speed. That comparison is at the core of answering the question about whether to include nuclear power in climate mitigation.

The “pro” discussion is also almost invariably focused entirely on the supply-side. Yet the International Energy Agency notes that, in 2010–2016, three-fourths of the world’s decarbonization came from energy savings. IEA also says renewables in 2010–20 decarbonized the world five times as much as nuclear growth did, but when the “pros” compare nuclear only with renewables, they are leaving out the cheapest half (or more) of the solution space—using energy more efficiently.

For example, the US in 2020 used 60% less energy per dollar of GDP than in 1975, and during that period, cumulative savings were 27 times the cumulative increase in supply from nuclear plus renewables. Looking forward, RMI’s Reinventing Fire (2011) rigorously showed how to quadruple the efficiency of using US electricity by 2050, at historically reasonable speed, and at an average cost one-tenth the cost of buying electricity today. That study’s findings have nicely tracked the decade of market evolution since, while the efficiency potential has considerably increased

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“We have to do something about global warming now”.

UPDATE: Another interview from the Today Show:

Below, Shatner as a real Rocket Man is going a long way to make up for his version of Elton John’s “Rocket Man” from the 70s.

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Hydrogen Ready to Rise?

October 14, 2021

In studying some of the data on eagles, and their sources of mortality, what’s stunning is how unstunning the number of wind turbine related deaths there have been.

As wind energy has boomed, so has the population of bald eagles.

Los Angeles Times:

The number of bald eagles — a species that once came dangerously close to extinction in the United States — has more than quadrupled over the last dozen years despite massive declines in overall bird populations, government scientists announced Tuesday.

A new survey by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service found that since 2009, when the last count was taken, the number of eagles had soared to an estimated 316,700 in the lower 48 states. At the species’ lowest point in the 1960s, there were fewer than 500 nesting pairs in those states.

Though bald eagles have been steadily recovering, the latest figures surprised even scientists who study avian populations.

Some of the increase may be due to the Fish and Wildlife Service’s new method of counting the birds. The agency has long used aerial surveys to monitor the species, but its latest update includes crowdsourced data from the online ornithological database eBird.

About 180,000 bird watchers around the nation reported their bald eagle sightings to the database, according to Amanda Rodewald, senior director for avian population studies at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, which maintains eBird. Those sightings provided government scientists with an entirely new view of the species, particularly in parts of the country that aren’t easily surveyed from above.

Though there’s no way to know for sure how much of the growth is because of the crowdsourced data, said Brian Millsap, national raptor coordinator for the Fish and Wildlife Service, the latest estimates line up with other survey data.

“While the eBird data has improved the estimates, the vast majority of this increase really is attributed to bald eagle population growth,” Millsap said.

The dark side of anti-clean energy activists is that, as this news report from Iowa shows, when those damn wind turbines just aren’t killing enough birds, the wing nuts take matters into their own hands.

New York Times:

The Biden administration announced on Wednesday a plan to develop large-scale wind farms along nearly the entire coastline of the United States, the first long-term strategy from the government to produce electricity from offshore turbines.

Speaking at a wind power industry conference in Boston, Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said that her agency will begin to identify, demarcate and hope to eventually lease federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico, Gulf of Maine and off the coasts of the Mid-Atlantic States, North Carolina and South Carolina, California and Oregon, to wind power developers by 2025.

The announcement came months after the Biden administration approved the nation’s first major commercial offshore wind farm off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts and began reviewing a dozen other potential offshore wind projects along the East Coast. On the West Coast, the administration has approved opening up two areas off the shores of Central and Northern California for commercial wind power development.

Taken together, the actions represent the most forceful push ever by federal government to promote offshore wind development.

“The Interior Department is laying out an ambitious road map as we advance the administration’s plans to confront climate change, create good-paying jobs, and accelerate the nation’s transition to a cleaner energy future,” said Ms. Haaland. “This timetable provides two crucial ingredients for success: increased certainty and transparency. Together, we will meet our clean energy goals while addressing the needs of other ocean users and potentially impacted communities.”

Mr. Biden has pledged to cut the nation’s fossil fuel emissions 50 percent from 2005 levels by 2030 by designing policies to promote the use of electric vehicles and clean energy such as wind and solar power. In particular, the administration has pledged to build 30,000 megawatts of offshore wind in the United States by 2030.

In Congress, Mr. Biden is pushing for passage of a major spending bill that includes a $150 billion program that would pay electric utilities to increase the amount of electricity they purchase from zero-carbon sources such as wind and solar, and penalize those that don’t.

Mr. Biden has also sought to unite his Cabinet in finding ways to promote renewable energy and cut the carbon dioxide that is warming the planet under what he has called an “all-of-government” approach to tackling climate. Experts in renewable energy policy said that the Interior Department’s move represents a major such step.

You know that the original Captain Kirk of TV’s Star Trek, 90 year old William Shatner was launched into space this week. You may not have seen his overwhelmed reaction,].

Do we have to launch rich guys into space to get them to understand what some of the world’s poorest people have known from the beginning?

Shatner’s reaction is so spontaneous and overflowing, he’s clearly describing the effect that many astronauts have been describing from the beginning. This utterly beautiful video is essential.
“A new kind of self awareness.”