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Sat Apr 27, 2013, 05:49 PM

Germany's clean energy drive fails to curb dirty brown coal

Despite Germany's green energy drive, which subsidises renewable wind and solar energy and aims to drop nuclear power, the country mined 5.1 percent more brown coal in 2012, industry association Debriv data showed.

Brown coal-fired plants also produced 6 percent more power, the 159 billion kilowatt hours (kWh) accounting for 25.7 percent of Germany's power production, industry figures showed.

...

And it is coal that is winning out because German utilities can turn a profit using it to generate electricity, something they are failing to do with gas.

...

Analysts say one possibility is that Germany might introduce a tax aimed at ensuring those cashing in on lignite help fund the country's 550 billion euro ($715 billion) shift to low carbon energy.

http://news.yahoo.com/germanys-clean-energy-drive-fails-curb-dirty-brown-134207188.html

10 replies, 1323 views

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Reply Germany's clean energy drive fails to curb dirty brown coal (Original post)
phantom power Apr 2013 OP
ConcernedCanuk Apr 2013 #1
kristopher Apr 2013 #2
NickB79 Apr 2013 #3
kristopher Apr 2013 #4
NickB79 Apr 2013 #5
FBaggins Apr 2013 #7
Yo_Mama Apr 2013 #9
wtmusic Apr 2013 #6
Yo_Mama Apr 2013 #8
gejohnston Apr 2013 #10

Response to phantom power (Original post)

Sat Apr 27, 2013, 07:23 PM

1. I think we should look at the other side of the coin.

 

.
.
.

" German solar power plants produced a world record 22 gigawatts of electricity per hour - equal to 20 nuclear power stations at full capacity - through the midday hours on Friday and Saturday, the head of a renewable energy think tank said."

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/26/us-climate-germany-solar-idUSBRE84P0FI20120526

I could copy and paste more snips,

but if anyone is seriously interested -

read the whole thing.

for MORE info

follow my search:

https://www.google.ca/#output=search&sclient=psy-ab&q=germany+solar+power+output&oq=Germany+solar&gs_l=hp.1.1.0l8j0i10j0.2174.7943.1.13718.14.13.0.1.1.0.259.2438.0j8j5.13.0...0.0...1c.1.11.hp.dqX7fuEkEbU&psj=1&bav=on.2,or.r_cp.r_qf.&bvm=bv.45645796,d.b2I&fp=5437961f8fec9f18&biw=1023&bih=662

Why are we so reluctant to accept ideas that are not our own?

and yeah,

that includes us Canucks.

(sigh)

CC

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Response to ConcernedCanuk (Reply #1)

Sat Apr 27, 2013, 07:37 PM

2. Or we can just recognize antirenewable propaganda for what it is...

Last edited Mon Apr 29, 2013, 03:40 PM - Edit history (1)

There was no expectation by anyone that German policy would be reducing coal consumption at this point in time. It is a straw man argument using a false benchmark by those who want to portray an excellent long term policy as a failure.

The press is churning these screeds out at a record pace.





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Response to kristopher (Reply #2)

Sat Apr 27, 2013, 09:47 PM

3. So, when is German coal consumption expected to fall?

There was no expectation by anyone that German policy would be reducing coal consumption at this point in time.


At what point in time do YOU think we'll see German coal production and consumption fall off? It's not like we have much time left to turn this Titanic around before the iceberg of climate change guts our civilization.

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Response to NickB79 (Reply #3)

Sat Apr 27, 2013, 10:08 PM

4. At what point in time do YOU think we'll see it happen?

If you had read their plans you'd already know. You certainly opine enough about what's going on there, so don't tell me you haven't even made yourself familiar with what they are actually planning to do?

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Response to kristopher (Reply #4)

Sat Apr 27, 2013, 10:13 PM

5. So, no clue then either? At least you're being honest.

I was expecting some bullshit "by 2050 blah blah blah" plan again.

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Response to kristopher (Reply #2)

Mon Apr 29, 2013, 09:23 AM

7. As usual... you've got plenty of spin in there.

Germany has been on the course of rapidly increased renewables penetration for several years now. Just as any new coal capacity coming on line this year was planned prior to 6/2011, very little of the new renewables generation in, say, 2012 was the result of the 6/2011 shift.

Germany produced about 6 TWh more from wind/solar in 2012 than in 2011. How much of that would have been there anyway even if the 6/2011 policy shift had never occured? Come on... be honest. How much?

By contrast, the amount of generation from nuclear power was down more than 40TWh from the ten-year average.

So look again at what their expectations were, say, three years ago. If they planned to receive one or two TWh less than what they ended up getting from solar/wind... but 40+ TWh of nuclear power. What portions of the market would have seen a decline if not coal/gas?

And since coal prices have fallen relative to gas... there is no possible conclusion but that Germany would have had quite a bit less coal generation than what it ended up with. They would still have built the newer "cleaner" (sic) coal plants, but everyone (including you) expected them to be burning LOTS less coal over the next few years.

And let us not forget that they've only shut down about 1/3rd of their nuclear generation. The next 90+ TWh/year of renewables (more than everything they've built in wind/solar to date combined) will do nothing but tread water.

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Response to FBaggins (Reply #7)

Mon Apr 29, 2013, 01:06 PM

9. In practice, their entire system has become more reliant on coal power

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-02-27/germany-to-add-most-coal-fired-plants-in-two-decades-iwr-says.html
Germany will this year start up more coal-fired power stations than at any time in the past 20 years as the country advances a plan to exit nuclear energy by 2022.

New coal plants with about 5,300 megawatts of capacity will start generating power this year, the Muenster-based IWR renewable energy institute said in an e-mailed statement today, citing data from the German regulator. About 1,000 megawatts of coal-fired capacity are expected to come offline, it said.


And I've been reading their energy plans for over a decade, and they did not anticipate this. The plan was to shift the required coal portion to higher efficiency by building new plants and shutting down old ones, but that's not happening as planned right now.

They are also adjusting their expectations as they go along:
http://www.germanenergyblog.de/?p=10156

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Response to ConcernedCanuk (Reply #1)

Sun Apr 28, 2013, 12:59 AM

6. Both sides of the coin need to be considered.

When the sun goes down, Germans will not accept losing their lights, their washing machines, their television sets, their computers. That's when coal plants make up the difference.

Germany has added a record amount of solar capacity in 2011 and 2012, and the net effect is that their carbon output has gone up - not down. Although on that day, for a few hours, solar provided 40% of Germany's energy, the average of the entire year of 2012 was a dismal 3%.

These details are significant. By relying on "zero-carbon" solar energy, Germany is going backwards.

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Response to wtmusic (Reply #6)

Mon Apr 29, 2013, 12:54 PM

8. Yes, but the other piece of this puzzle is the wind stall

Let's be honest and admit that Germany never expected their solar plants to be generating power when everybody came home and turned the lights on. They expected to be using wind to do that.

The real reason that they are on a coal expansion path is that they haven't gotten anywhere with wind, and there the problems are multiplying - until they solve that, they are stuck with a lot of fossil fuel generation and an increasing share of coal.

They have to build the transmission lines and the offshore connections, but they are stumbling around trying to figure out how to pay for it, and until they do, the current trajectory continues.

I presume that because this is an election year they won't start making decisions until the fall, so for now they'll tread water. This is not their plan, but funding to execute their plan is currently lagging, and that's a political issue that is up in the air.

What matters here is the long term, not the year-by-year.

Of course, if they can't get the wind in gear by 2015, then they probably will not be shutting down nuclear plants in 2020. It takes a while to build the generation and transmission capacities.

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Response to phantom power (Original post)

Mon Apr 29, 2013, 02:17 PM

10. IIRC,

the idea was to avoid spending an obscene amount of money on nukes and still get the same amount of power. it succeeded at that. Now they just have to deal with the coal.

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