The spectre of wind droughts

Britain and Germany are in deep trouble with their power supplies and wind droughts are the root of the problem. You can imagine a book to be written one day called How Wind Droughts Destroyed Western Civilization.

Texas in 2021 gave us a glimpse of the future when the wind died and the temperature fell dramatically. Hundreds died and it would have been thousands if the state had gone completely black. Not wishing to have a repeat of that performance there are plans to subsidise gas producers to maintain capacity in the face of competition from subsidised wind and solar power. (The article incorrectly places the crisis in 2019.)

Don’t laugh, this is happening here already with a deal in Victoria to maintain the supply of coal power from Loy Yang to the Portland aluminium smelter owned by AGL. And both the major parties in NSW promised before the recent election to keep the coal fires burning at Eraring.

Someone have a word to Rod Sims, he has joined the Superpower Institute, a new think-tank  formed to fight the misinformation campaign by energy realists.

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April 22, 2023 6:07 pm

Britain and Germany are in deep trouble with their power supplies and wind droughts are the root of the problem.

Er…no, Rafe.

AGW fanatics, corporate grifters and craven/corrupt politicians are the root of the problem.

Meanwhile, India and China press on with more coal fired generation.

April 22, 2023 7:42 pm

All I know is Coal is King . I reckon I could accept Nuclear also , jus sayin’ ..

April 22, 2023 7:45 pm

Meanwhile other Euro countries forging ahead with nuclear or Poland with coal.
Incidentally so is Germany, with specially dirty lignite, villages destroyed to get to it, why no outcry about that?

April 22, 2023 8:27 pm

Yup thought the name Sims sounded familiar. Google search confirmed and added more.

ALP lackey status confirmed.

Bar Beach Swimmer
April 22, 2023 9:57 pm

All I know is Coal is King . I reckon I could accept Nuclear also , jus sayin’ ..

Here in Newcastle, it is. And hopefully it is for a long time to come. Nuclear is ok, too.

Bruce in WA
April 23, 2023 4:30 am

Standing on a hilltop overlooking a mediaeval town (Vivieres) in France, the guide proudly pointed to the nuclear power plant huddled into the greenery in the distance. What a contrast.

All I could think of was to sing the theme to The Simpsons. My wife thumped me.

Anchor What
Anchor What
April 23, 2023 5:48 am

The climate scam will, with its adjuncts ranging from destruction of the power systems of western democracies through to demonisation of meat (and now even rice!) and emasculation of transport, see us all impoverished and directed down the road to serfdom by governments and institutions so thoroughly marched through that common sense doesn’t get a look-in any more.

April 23, 2023 7:40 am

Sims… he’s a government shill and would not have a clue about the real world.

Another ivory tower academic.

Boambee John
Boambee John
April 23, 2023 10:08 am

Sims is, to a minor degree, correct. Sun and wind are indeed free. Unfortunately, the systems to collect and distribute their potential are exceedingly expensive and environmentally destructive.

April 23, 2023 10:12 am

Summed up by this picture from powerline week in pictures

comment image

Winston Smith
April 23, 2023 6:17 pm


Having brought the coal and gas electrical generating system to the brink, they are now subsidising it because it will be a disaster if they aren’t there.
I’d cry, but it would dilute my beer.

April 24, 2023 5:17 am

Rod Sims eh- another tired old turd who’s never had a real job. I still haven’t figured out who ‘economists’ actually do.

April 24, 2023 5:21 am

Sims with his bullshit ‘degrees’ from Melb uni and the ANU sums up why we are in trouble.

April 24, 2023 10:40 am

Uni Degrees and science, are scientists just becoming another public servant job?

There is room for thought that our scientists are not the best and brightest on the whole.

Some might be but the rest are not courageous pursuers of knowlegde, rather a steady income with occassional side benefit of minor fame on a paper with 37 other “scientists” and hangers on.

There are so many scandels involving peer review and publishing cartels these days that no one wants to draw attention.

So many research projects, co-operative centres and such, but no breakthrough science, just building on earlier works .. nothing new or original.

We spend more and more on research and Uni science hoping for innovative rewards but that’s not the purpose of those institiutions. Their purpose is little empires and kingdoms and a steady folw of taxpayer government (funds).

We should not expect the scientific community to be independent, they are not, on the whole they are government funded public servants.

I like Elon Musk’s flash in the pan idea to identify organisations’ source of funding.

April 24, 2023 11:43 am

And Liddel started it’s shut down this week with Unit 4 closing this morning, and the other 2 being taken offline on 26 and 28 April.

Going to be an interesting time as we shift into El Nino finally.

April 24, 2023 2:43 pm

If only we could hook up LaborGreens and Liberal politicians to the turbines, I’m certain they’d provide enough wind for the country twice over. Apart from that, ruinables won’t work.

April 24, 2023 5:42 pm

Unipardy=enemies of the people

April 24, 2023 10:11 pm

John Reid has a general discussion of the broader issues of AGW and nett zero at Blackjay.

Moriarty and Honnery revisited the subject of renewable energy potential in a 2020 report published in the journal Energies, reiterating that “a future world entirely fueled” by renewables could end up being “a lower-energy one.” Moriarty then teamed up with seven co-authors — climate scientists, sustainability experts and engineers — to look at “energy descent as a post-carbon transition scenario.” The team concluded that “… deep uncertainties remain about whether renewables can maintain, let alone grow, the range and scale of energy services presently provided by fossil fuels.” As Moriarty and Honnery put it in their 2016 paper, the “prudent course” in a renewables-only future “would involve major energy reductions…we will likely [need] to re-evaluate all energy-consuming tasks, discarding those that are less important.”


April 24, 2023 10:26 pm

A couple of further quotes from the above link:

Politicians cannot win elections if they tell the truth about energy decline:
“To win at the polls, says influential Democratic Party consultant Ruy Texeira, one must always remember that “degrowth is probably the worst idea…since communism.” Successful politicians must offer an optimistic program that “technology can produce an abundant future,” that “the transition to a green economy is really only possible in a high-growth context,” with “expensive technological innovation and infrastructure development” — that is, making capitalist business-as-usual the only solution. ”

“University of Lausanne ecological economist Julia Steinberger thinks of green growth as a zombie notion. It has been killed several times over, “canceled by research,” Steinberger has tweeted. “I’m not sure our public discourse in media & teaching has quite caught up to the fact that green growth is a fiction …deceased, gone.” Why the persistence of an idea that has so little substance behind it? For obvious reasons, as Steinberger explained: “growth aligns with currently powerful forces and structures in our economies: profit-oriented corporations, wealth accumulation and the power that comes with wealth.”

April 25, 2023 3:29 am

Admirable Sims spell their surname with ‘mm’.

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