Weekly Local weather and Vitality Information Roundup #444 – Watts Up With That?

The Week That Was: 2021-02-20 (February 20, 2021)
Dropped at You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org)
The Science and Environmental Coverage Venture

Quote of the Week: “Studies that say that one thing hasn’t occurred are at all times attention-grabbing to me, as a result of as we all know, there are recognized knowns; there are issues we all know we all know. We additionally know there are recognized unknowns; that’s to say we all know there are some issues we have no idea. However there are additionally unknown unknowns—those we don’t know we don’t know. And if one appears all through the historical past of our nation and different free international locations, it’s the latter class that tends to be the tough ones.” – Secretary of Protection Donald Rumsfeld, Feb 12, 2002

Variety of the Week: – 70% undependable.


By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Coverage Venture (SEPP)

Promote the Delusion: The extreme chilly that hit Texas this week gave recent alternatives for many who have interaction in finger pointing and those that promote myths regarding local weather change and methods to deal with it. There isn’t a bodily proof that rising CO2 within the environment from say 300 elements per million to 400 elements per million, zero.01% of the molecules within the environment, will trigger cooling. (Equally, there may be little bodily proof that it’s going to trigger harmful warming, although that has develop into a preferred political delusion.)

When California skilled blackouts this summer season, many politicians ignored the truth that in California the legislature is chargeable for all utilities. As an alternative, they promptly blamed the utilities and world warming for failure of utilities to supply wanted electrical energy. Thereby they tried to deflect their very own obligations.

grid is an energized system of electrical energy turbines, transformers, transmission and distribution traces and shoppers that have to be maintained inside tight tolerances. In any other case, it fails for all. For years, the California Impartial Methods Operator (CAISO), which is chargeable for sustaining the grid in main elements of California, has been warning the general public that elevated photo voltaic technology, normally within the type of photoelectric panels, will place an awesome burden on electrical technology because the solar goes down.

CAISO developed the CAISO Duck Curve, illustrating that rising photo voltaic and erratic wind energy can produce oversupply energy when not wanted and lack energy when it’s wanted essentially the most. When the latter happens, the grid operator should shut off energy to a part of the grid to stop failure for all shoppers. For years, California politicians have ignored the proof that unusually heat, nonetheless climate would create conditions the place CAISO should shut off energy to elements of the grid to guard the grid from main injury lasting months, which, after all, create blackouts that vex shoppers..

When such conditions resulted in California Blackouts final yr, the politicians blamed everybody else – and local weather change – to cover their very own duty. Sadly, this can be a frequent instance of actions by many politicians and bureaucrats: When proof contradicts the political delusion; promote the parable, ignore the proof. We’re seeing the identical in Texas. See http://www.caiso.com/Paperwork/Flexibleresourceshelprenewables_FastFacts.pdf


Ignore the Proof: Though others expressed related views, within the quote of the week Donald Rumsfeld succinctly expressed the problem in finding out that which we all know and that which we have no idea, in addition to ranges of ignorance. For his effort, he was ridiculed within the common press. It’s helpful to use Rumsfeld’s reasoning to attempt to perceive what occurred in Texas this previous week.

The plains states, together with Texas, are topic to extreme outbreaks of chilly winter climate in addition to extreme outbreaks of scorching climate. Within the 19th century, settlers within the higher Midwest famous extreme blasts of chilly Arctic air. Within the 1880s, even Theodore Roosevelt speculated whether or not the Nice Plains have been inhabitable. Throughout such occasions, cattle froze as far south as Texas, and the well-known schoolchildren’s blizzard of 1888 killed over 200 kids who misplaced their manner going house from college. Blaming the chilly outbreak in Texas on a change within the slight quantity of CO2 within the environment is absurd. Some climate forecasting organizations resembling WeatherBell Analytics predicted the outbreak of chilly, others didn’t. The outbreak was neither unpredictable nor unprecedented. The query is what do we all know presently?

Thankfully, the grid operator for 90% of Texas is ERCOT, which posts glorious helpful data. As with different US grid operators, ERCOT tries to be 99.9% dependable. There was a extreme chilly outbreak in 2011 and in 2014. How has ERCOT responded to extreme chilly outbreaks?

In 2021, its technology by gasoline from Gasoline Mixed Cycle was 35%, Wind 25%, Coal 22% Nuclear 12%, Gasoline three% and Photo voltaic 2%. The abstract for month-to-month technology will not be but accessible. In 2020 its technology by gasoline was Gasoline-Mixed Cycle 40%, Wind 23%, Coal 18%, Nuclear 11%, Gasoline 6%, Photo voltaic 2%. The months for best technology was July and August, the best wind technology was December.

For 2020, about 25 p.c of technology was from weather-dependent photo voltaic and wind; in 2021, 27%. Within the current chilly outbreak, inland wind generators froze and photo voltaic was snow lined, ineffective. Nonetheless, shoreline wind manufacturing was maintained (the floor water temperature at Galveston was over 55 levels F (over 15 levels C). From excessive chilly within the winter to excessive nonetheless, warmth in the summertime, about 25% of the electrical energy generated for ERCOT is from intermittent, undependable sources. In accordance with studies, ERCOT assumes that within the winter solely 10% of its technology may be counted on to come back reliably from wind. The truth that so many wind installations have been constructed is a results of big-money politics, not practicality. See hyperlinks underneath Difficult the Orthodoxy, Questioning the Orthodoxy, Subsidies and Mandates Without end, https://www.kansas.com/information/native/news-columns-blogs/the-story-of-kansas/article1105618.html and http://www.ercot.com/gridinfo/technology


Two Markets: One of the helpful analyses regarding Texas Blackouts was by “Planning Engineer” writing in Judith Curry’s “Local weather And so on.” He writes:

“The story from some media sources is that frozen wind generators are chargeable for the ability shortfalls in Texas. Different media sources emphasize that fossil gasoline assets ought to shoulder the blame as a result of they’ve giant chilly induced outages as properly and likewise some pure gasoline vegetation couldn’t get hold of gasoline.

“Excessive chilly ought to be anticipated to trigger vital outages of each renewable and fossil fuel-based assets. Why would anybody anticipate that ample quantities of pure gasoline can be accessible and deliverable to provide a lot wanted technology? Contemplating the intense chilly, nothing significantly shocking is occurring inside any useful resource class in Texas. The applied sciences and their efficiency have been properly throughout the anticipated bounds of what may have been foreseen for such climate circumstances. Whereas some degradation ought to be anticipated, what is occurring in Texas is a departure from what they need to be experiencing. Who or what then is chargeable for the surprising penalties produced by Texas’s run-in with this current bout of maximum chilly?”


“Historically, duty for guaranteeing satisfactory capability throughout excessive circumstances has fallen upon particular person utility suppliers. A pair a long time in the past I used to be chargeable for the load forecasting, transmission planning and technology planning efforts of an electrical cooperative within the southeastern US. My group’s projections, research and evaluation supported our plans to fulfill buyer demand underneath forecasted peak load circumstances. We had seen appreciable progress in residential and business warmth pumps. At colder temperature, these models cease producing warmth effectively and change to resistance heating which [requires substantially increased power and therefore] causes a spike in demand. Our forecasts confirmed that we would want to plan for further capability to fulfill this potential demand underneath excessive circumstances in upcoming winters.

“I used to be raked over the coals and this forecast was strongly challenged. Offering further technology capability, guaranteeing dedicated (agency) deliveries of gasoline through the winter, upgrading transmission amenities are all costly endeavors. Premiums are paid to make sure gasoline supply and backup energy and there’s no refund if it’s not used. Such actions elevated the annual funds and impression charges considerably for one thing that isn’t prone to happen most years, even when the intense climate projections are acceptable. You definitely don’t wish to over-estimate peak demand as a result of rising prices related to assembly that demand. However again then we have been obligated to supply for such “anticipated” hundreds. Our CEO, accountants and charge makers would ideally have preferred a decrease excessive demand projection as that may typically stored our price down. It was difficult to carry agency and stand by the research and pressure the additional prices on our Members.”

Right here we see the true battle: does one plan for what is predicted or for the bizarre? Planning engineer goes on to clarify:

“The Method in Texas

“Who’s chargeable for offering satisfactory capability in Texas throughout excessive circumstances? The quick reply is nobody. The Electrical Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) appears at potential forecasted peak circumstances and anticipated accessible technology and if there may be ample margin, they assume every little thing will likely be all proper. However in contrast to utilities underneath conventional fashions, they don’t be certain that the assets can ship energy underneath hostile circumstances, they don’t require that turbines have secured agency gasoline provides, they usually don’t be sure that the assets will likely be prepared and accessible to function. They depend on sufficient assets being there as a result of they assume that’s of their proprietor’s finest pursuits. In contrast to all different US power markets, Texas doesn’t also have a capability market. By design they rely solely upon the power market. Because of this entities revenue solely from the precise power they promote into the system. They don’t see any revenue from having stand by capability prepared to assist out in emergencies. The power solely market works properly underneath regular circumstances to maintain costs down. Whereas usually markets are sometimes nice issues, offering wanted power throughout excessive circumstances evidently will not be their forte. In contrast to the normal strategy the place particular entities have obligations to fulfill peak ranges, in Texas the duty is diffuse and unassigned. There isn’t a vital long-term motivation for entities to make sure further capability simply in case it could be wanted throughout excessive circumstances. Entities that may make that gamble theoretically can revenue when markets skyrocket, however such approaches require super persistence and the flexibility to climate a few years of potential destructive returns.”

The underside line is that in Texas, nobody is formally chargeable for offering satisfactory electrical energy underneath excessive circumstances. Nonetheless, clearly in the end the legislature have to be accountable. Will it ignore the proof that its insurance policies, or non-policies, lead to blackouts as occurred in California? We will see. Planning Engineer concludes with:

“Anybody can take a look at Texas and observe that fossil gasoline assets may have carried out higher in the chilly. If those that owned the vegetation had secured assured gasoline, Texas would have been higher off. Extra emergency peaking models can be an awesome factor to have available. Why would turbines be inclined to do such a factor? Think about, what can be occurring if the house owners of gasoline technology had constructed ample technology to get by this emergency with some extra energy? As an alternative of amassing $9,00zero per MWH from present functioning models, they might be receiving lower than $100 per MWH for the output of these vegetation and their new vegetation. Why would anybody make super infrastructure that may sit idle in regular years and serve to slash your income by orders of magnitudes in excessive circumstances?

“The inducement for gasoline technology to do the precise factor was taken away by Texas’s deliberate power solely market technique. The aim of which was to assist the profitability of intermittent wind and photo voltaic assets and improve their penetration ranges. I don’t consider anybody has ever superior the notion that fossil gasoline vegetation would possibly function primarily based on altruism. Incentives and duty have to be paired.  Doing a autopsy on the Texas scenario ignoring incentives and duty is inappropriate and incomplete.”

Texas is self-sufficient in oil and pure gasoline; it exports it nationally and internationally. Some wells produce water in addition to pure gasoline and the water froze through the deep chilly. However there are ample depleted wells to retailer a month’s provide of pure gasoline to fulfill any doable contingency and, as seen in northern states, pipelines may be winterized. Equally, coal may be saved on website. Some coal and nuclear vegetation could have been present process upkeep, however TWTW discovered no verification that the cooling intakes have been frozen placing them out of fee.

Texas is attracting excessive tech industries together with chip producers which require dependable electrical energy. A brief interruption can destroy weeks of manufacturing. In contrast to their colleagues in California, will the legislators in Texas present the mandatory incentives to guarantee dependable electrical energy? See hyperlinks underneath Looking for a Widespread Floor, Vitality Points – Texas, Various, Inexperienced (“Clear”) Photo voltaic and Wind, and https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/electrical energy/electricity-in-the-us.php


Blackouts Coming Close to You? The above centered on blackouts in Texas and to a lesser extent California. It’s too early to inform if the Biden administration will observe by in its assertions to cease carbon dioxide emissions. In accordance with the US Vitality Data Company (EIA), in 2019 coal and pure gasoline generated 61% of US electrical energy, nuclear 20%, wind 7.three%, hydro 6.6%, photo voltaic 1.Eight%, biomass 1.four%, and petroleum 1%. Changing fossil fuels with wind and photo voltaic will make 70% of US electrical energy topic to surprising blackouts.

Nationwide insurance policies apart, Donn Dears has a superb rationalization and a video how varied US grid system operators favor unreliable photo voltaic and wind over dependable turbines of electrical energy. Bluntly, a lot of the American public is paying greater than wanted for electrical energy underneath the pretense that the public sale system getting used is offering the bottom value doable. See hyperlinks underneath Questioning the Orthodoxy and https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/electrical energy/electricity-in-the-us.php


Faux Proof, Faux Science: UK’s Paul Homewood supplies a transparent video by Ben Pile of “Spiked” explaining one of many methods being utilized by world warming advocates. They use fashions to supply estimates of what fashions calculate could occur with a rise in CO2, then evaluate these estimates to estimates from the fashions of what could occur with out the rise in CO2. That is laptop simulation vs. laptop simulation, slightly than simulation vs. actuality, which it ought to be. The worldwide local weather fashions vastly overestimate the precise warming of the environment over the previous 40 years. The modelers know this and have gotten determined. No surprise Ben Pile is so closely attacked for clearly figuring out and explaining these methods. See hyperlinks underneath Difficult the Orthodoxy.


Variety of the Week: – 70% undependable. As said above, utilizing EIA numbers, if the Biden administration succeeds in changing coal and pure gas-powered electrical energy technology to photo voltaic and wind, then it might make about 70% of US electrical energy technology undependable (non-dispatchable). The general public wouldn’t be capable of depend on it when wanted. As Donald Rumsfeld would possibly say, recognized unknowns are dangerous sufficient, however changing a recognized with an unknown unknown is folly. See hyperlinks underneath Change in US Administrations.



Fb now ‘arbiter of fact’ on ‘local weather change’

Panel with Yale, Cambridge specialists to debunk ‘myths’ of ‘deniers’

By Artwork Moore, WND, Feb 18, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]

“The specialists will come from the likes of the College of Cambridge, George Mason College and the Yale Program on Local weather Change Communication.”

[SEPP Comment: The promoters of the false 97% consensus at George Mason are in charge of fighting misinformation?]

YouTube Shuts Me Down Once more

By Tony Heller, His Weblog, Feb 19, 2021


Suppressing Scientific Inquiry

Who will Ridd us?

By John Robson, Local weather Dialogue Nexus, Feb 17, 2021

Difficult the Orthodoxy — NIPCC

Local weather Change Reconsidered II: Bodily Science

Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, Nongovernmental Worldwide Panel on Local weather Change (NIPCC), 2013

Abstract: https://www.heartland.org/_template-assets/paperwork/CCR/CCR-II/Abstract-for-Policymakers.pdf

Local weather Change Reconsidered II: Organic Impacts

Idso, Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, Nongovernmental Worldwide Panel on Local weather Change (NIPCC), 2014

Abstract: https://www.heartland.org/media-library/pdfs/CCR-IIb/Abstract-for-Policymakers.pdf

Local weather Change Reconsidered II: Fossil Fuels

By A number of Authors, Bezdek, Idso, Legates, and Singer eds., Nongovernmental Worldwide Panel on Local weather Change, April 2019

Obtain with no cost:

Why Scientists Disagree About International Warming

The NIPCC Report on the Scientific Consensus

By Craig D. Idso, Robert M. Carter, and S. Fred Singer, Nongovernmental Worldwide Panel on Local weather Change (NIPCC), Nov 23, 2015

Obtain with no cost:


Nature, Not Human Exercise, Guidelines the Local weather

S. Fred Singer, Editor, NIPCC, 2008

International Sea-Stage Rise: An Analysis of the Knowledge

By Craig D. Idso, David Legates, and S. Fred Singer, Heartland Coverage Temporary, Might 20, 2019

Difficult the Orthodoxy

The New Darkish Age: The self-destruction of an power superpower

Editorial, WSJ, Through GWPF, Feb 17, 2021

A deep inexperienced freeze: An existential risk to America’s future

Editorial, WSJ, Through GWPF, Feb 16, 2021

Richard Betts’ Pseudo Science

By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of Folks Know That, Feb 17, 2021

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