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THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 03 Mar 2017, 13:15:19

Are you are marijuana growner KJ? I don't see how anyone else can justifiy a lithium-ion storage.

The average US homes uses 30 kWh per day, would require 3) 10 kWh Powerwall units. They cost $3,500 each, and would have to be replaced every two-three years. (expected life of a lithium ion battery, even if they are sitting on a shelf unused.) $11,000 every two years is excessive. More than the grid.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Fri 03 Mar 2017, 13:31:48

No, I'm somebody planning an all-electric and very energy-efficient off-grid rural home. Nor am I advocating that we "pass a law", invade the ME and take their oil, or anything else dramatic.

The PassivHaus or even LEED Platinum would require 3kWh per day, not 30. The Lithium batteries in the Powerwall are not the same as in your cell phone, and are managed by an intelligent charger. They are warrantied for 10 years, and expected to last 20 years before replacement. Nor will they be $3500 each after the GigaFactory gets going, they are $3500 using imported Panasonic Lithium cells.

The power grid in it's present form is obsolete, as are our energy-hog residences. We need to quit sheltering people from bad decisions, such as buying Building Code compliant homes, which when you think about it, are the very worst lowest quality homes that can legally be sold. Then we need to require that every existing structure meet the energy consumption goal every 50 years, or be torn down.

But the most obsolete thing of all is those who believe things never change. The power grid was a good thing in 1930, but it's a bloated and very bad idea in 2017.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 03 Mar 2017, 15:19:09

KJ, you must remember the Last Great Housing Boom. We used the last of our inexpensive petroleum to build out the idiotic American Suburban Nightmare. Houses sited to the street rather than solar south, so-called Great Rooms (that's where you heat the roof instead of the room lol), granite countertops, forced air heating, and other idiocies.

It's no coincidence that the Dumb Bubble ended in 2005, just when inexpensive conventional oil peaked/plateaued. The last chance for a sustainable US infrastructure. No money now to build out a suburban replacement. Your pretty LEEDS home will stand as a Castle among slums.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Fri 03 Mar 2017, 16:10:02

It's not like cheap houses last forever. Here in trendy Silly Valley, homes get refurbed about every 16 years, and even in economically depressed Wisconsin, about every 27 years between remodels.

Frankly, we can't afford not to. Do you think those "bubble" homes you mention should be preserved, or bulldozed? Do you think anybody would even want to live in one when the rent is $500 per month and the heating bill is $2500 per month? Gas and grid electricity will eventually get expensive and never get cheap again - the NZE or NEP home will soon be the only kind a thinking person would even want. Think about living in your home without any HVAC you can afford, and no wood to burn either.

The newly constructed PassivHaus will cost 30% more to build than simple code compliance, and the energy bill will be 10% of the average if you make the effort to conserve. The Passivhaus standards for retrofits are a bit more lax, call it 15% of the energy budget of the average home. The proposal that every existing home comply with the energy consumption standard every 50 years is a modest one, that's about as long as cheap houses last anyway. A contractor should not be able to "flip" a property with cosmetic changes alone, he must bring it up to the then-current energy consumption standard or flatten the structure and start over.

We have serious problems to solve and we need to get serious about solving them. The biggest problem is that we consume too much energy. But if I build (or refurb) a 3000 square foot NZE or NEP home, and I'm completely off grid, I have met the standard, haven't I? I'm not taking power from the grid or the gas main, and I'm allowed to set my own thermostat and if I'm 95 years old and want it at 75 degrees in my 3000 sq ft home, I can do that. Also I don't want anyone telling me I "must" live in 300 sq ft or 500 sq ft - I will decide, and I will live where I want to live, and how I want to live. If YOU want to live in town and pay for the power grid, I'll not oppose you - as long as you also have a home that only consumes 10% to 15% of the energy we use today.

I told you that I believed that we could keep very similar lifestyles to what we have while consuming 15% of the energy we consume today. I meant that. The PO.com members are fixated on energy sources, when their attention should be focussed on energy conservation, even when that means that they have to bring their home into code compliance once every 50 years. It's not intrusive and it's not extreme, and it is necessary that infrastructure - even personal residences, get renewed for the sake of energy efficiency.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Newfie » Thu 09 Mar 2017, 20:14:57

Article on ocean based turbines from gcaptain.

http://gcaptain.com/wind-power-blows-th ... op-at-sea/
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Fri 10 Mar 2017, 11:18:35

Newfie - Yep, those cost factors in the link are interesting if correct;

"Across Europe, the price of building an offshore wind farm has fallen 46 percent in the last five years — 22 percent last year alone. Erecting turbines in the seabed now costs an average $126 for each megawatt-hour of capacity, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. That’s below the $155 a megawatt-hour price for new nuclear developments in Europe and closing in on the $88 price tag on new coal plants, the London-based researcher estimates.".

Of course two important points: still a lot cheaper to build onshore...if you have the land. Of course we have plenty of suitable shore line in the US...just like there is around the North Sea. The problem remains NIMBYism. Except in Texas, of course. LOL.

Second they are comparing the offshore wind to building NEW sources from fossil fuels amd nukes. But if a country isn't expanding its electricity production capacity it's cheaper to maintain existing systems then replacing them. Again even though Texas had greatly expanded its wind power capapcity we haven't abandoned the fossil fuel sources...keeping them as backup and to handle the intermittency problem of wind and solar. That's a very different economic model the many countries face.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Fri 10 Mar 2017, 18:14:42

ROCKMAN wrote:Newfie - Yep, those cost factors in the link are interesting if correct;

"Across Europe, the price of building an offshore wind farm has fallen 46 percent in the last five years — 22 percent last year alone. Erecting turbines in the seabed now costs an average $126 for each megawatt-hour of capacity, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. That’s below the $155 a megawatt-hour price for new nuclear developments in Europe and closing in on the $88 price tag on new coal plants, the London-based researcher estimates.".

Of course two important points: still a lot cheaper to build onshore...if you have the land. Of course we have plenty of suitable shore line in the US...just like there is around the North Sea. The problem remains NIMBYism. Except in Texas, of course. LOL.

Second they are comparing the offshore wind to building NEW sources from fossil fuels amd nukes. But if a country isn't expanding its electricity production capacity it's cheaper to maintain existing systems then replacing them. Again even though Texas had greatly expanded its wind power capapcity we haven't abandoned the fossil fuel sources...keeping them as backup and to handle the intermittency problem of wind and solar. That's a very different economic model the many countries face.

Yes the intermittentcy problem is what will place a limit on how much we can build out wind farms on shore and off. I expect we will have reliability problems that are insurmountable if we get above 25 percent wind and solar. One thing I think they ought to explore is tethering a tidal turbine to each offshore wind tower foundation. It would use the same collection cables and have predicable production outputs and make the whole offshore wind farm less iffy.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Simon_R » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 03:57:08

Where I work in the EU the country has 27% wind penetration (and rising).

We are moments from disaster constantly ;)

however, this is managed by adjusting the wholesale market structure and selling Reliability Contracts and Having a balancing market, where there is a will, there is a way.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 10:32:56

vt - "I expect we will have reliability problems that are insurmountable if we get above 25 percent wind and solar." Well, there may be a practical limit but I'm not sure we can make an estimate of what that might be... least for Texas. That's the point I keep pushing about NOT needing commercial battery grid storage to deal with intermittency. So again: Texas has no problems when the wind stops blowing or the sun stops shinning: we just burn more NG/lignite. In fact recently, thanks to mild winter weather, Texas significantly reduced the amount of fossil fuels (primarily coal) it was burning by leaning more on the alts. If I recall correctly coal sourced electricity dropped from its normal 30% or so to about 15%. And if we get hit next week with another Arctic vortex that spikes demand? We'll do as we did before: watch our wind power provide 40% of state wide demand. Interestingly it was wind power that helped us deal with a few days of an intermittency problem we had with NG fired plants: the cold snap knocked some off line. Had it not been for wind (which fortunately peaks thanks to the very high winds that come with the vortex) backing up the system Texas would have had blackouts. And now that solar is coming on strong we'll have it as a partial backup in the summer...for at least half of the cycle while the sun is shinning.

Lately I've come to the harsh conclusion that those areas of the country that say they are wailing for storage to solve their potential intermittency issue are full of sh*t. LOL. They are either liars or ignorant. Today every state has some energy source supplying electricity to its citizens. Which OBVIOUSLY means that if they had a significant alt energy system that went down for whatever reason (no wind/nightfall) all it would need to do is kick in the EXISTING fossil fuel burners. In fact, dealing with solar would be very easy since nightfall time is rather predictable for many folks. LOL. Often the "logic" offered is that due to intermittency the existing generation infrastructure can't be replaced without grid storage. That's obviously a false assumption: who says that existing infrastructure has to be replaced by the alts? Since the infrastructure is already in place it costs nothing except the daily operation expense. Which would be reduced by the electricity the alts bring to the game. IOW there's no need to wait for the "perfect solution".

In the case of areas with growth and increasing electricity demand, such as Texas, the cost of alt energy doesn't compete against the existing infrastructure economics (which usually wins) but against the cost of NEW infrastructure. Such as expensive (and GHG generating ff plants) and very expensive (and politically divisive) nuclear power.

In either case there's no need to wait for commercially viable grid storage. And if/when it is developed those regions with existing alt energy in place can immediately take advantage and not have to wait for their alt systems to be built out. At that point a state like Texas (which is continuously expanding it alt energy) could quickly reduce it GHG footprint from electricity generation significantly...maybe even to the point of being insignificant.

The Aussies need to look at Texas closely. The same dynamic should work as well for them (maybe even better) as it does here. But only if they change the regs to prevent the power generators from gaming the system. And that could be done by modeling the Texas EXCOT organization. Had a power generator in Texas had done what one did recently in Australia and caused a blackout/high utility bills it would have meant huge financial penalties and possibly jail time . We love saying "Don't mess with Texas". But what is very clear given it's our electricity czar: "Don't f*ck with EXCOT". LOL.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 11:51:17

I expect a fossil fuel plant that only gets used at night or on calm days is a lot more expensive to run then one that runs 24/7 or daily at optimum capacity during peak use hours. Tell the staff sorry guys don't need you today, the wind is blowing West of the Pecos" :razz:
But before we get there we have a lot of alt energy to build out for that first twenty five percent and we should press forward on that as it is twenty five percent we don't have to waste fossil fuels on or pollute with.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 12:01:04

vtsnowedin wrote:I expect a fossil fuel plant that only gets used at night or on calm days is a lot more expensive to run then one that runs 24/7 or daily at optimum capacity during peak use hours. Tell the staff sorry guys don't need you today, the wind is blowing West of the Pecos" :razz:
But before we get there we have a lot of alt energy to build out for that first twenty five percent and we should press forward on that as it is twenty five percent we don't have to waste fossil fuels on or pollute with.


Not so much as you might think. The primary expense with coal is and has always been the cost of the fuel. The remaining expenses including the crushers, feeders, and even today's complex stack scrubbing machinery, are experienced due to mechanical wear and thus proportional to the hours of operation. Coal plants can go from cold to full steam pressure in less than one half hour, although a somewhat longer period is customary.

I hate coal, if the truth be known, and I don't believe that "clean coal" exists. But coal technology is over a century old and quite effective.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 15:29:52

KJ - "The primary expense with coal is and has always been the cost of the fuel." Not just coal: in 2016 while coal provided 9,200 thousand MWh in Texas NG provided 15,200 MWh. That year 4,700 thousand MWh came from nonhydo renewables...about 30% more then we were getting from our two nuclear plants. And that NG was costing $8/MMBtu on average during 2008 compared to prices in 2016 that averaged $2.50 MMBtu, the lowest annual average price since 1999. And according to Baker Hughes how many rigs did we have drilling for NG in Aug 2008: 1,600. And how many just 8 years later in Aug 2016: 81. And most of the rigs drilling for NG recently have targeted the shale reservoirs...wells with a documented high decline rate. So who would not expect NG to increase significantly in the future? Imaging how much daily operational costs would increase if there weren't wind/solar being substituted for NG.

Folks can put down wind and solar all the want. But it won't change the DOCUMENTED FACTS: Texas consumers have saved a lot of money thanks to our world class alts. And will save us a lot more in the future: remember Texas is, by a very wide margin, the largest electricity consuming state. And that consumption is projected to increase significantly in the decades ahead. Additionally Texas didn't have to wait (as many others continue to do) for economical grid storage to deal with intermittency...we used our existing (and already paid for) fossil fuel fired generation. Fossil fuels which have seen very low costs during our alt build out. Low costs that cannot persist indefinitely.

Folks should understand that due to our tremendous growth the state had no choice but to aggressively deal with our electricity capacity. Over the 5 years ending in 2015 the Texas economy grew in real terms by 22% at a compound annual growth rate of 4.1% per year. Real Texas GDP, at $1,475 billion in 2015, is at the highest level recorded to date. Real Texas per-capita GDP is 12.48% higher today than 5 years prior in 2010. In that time the population in Texas grew by 2,228,077 (8.83%) people.

Chicken and egg: the influx of folks to Texas looking for work (at one point a few years ago 75% of all new jobs in the US were created in Texas) demanded that the state expand our electricity capability. But that expansion, helped partially by our wind power, also provided the ability to attract new businesses. Such as two German heavy industry companies that relocated to south Texas to take advantage of our lower cost energy.

Which takes me back to a point made before: alt energy developed in Texas not for environmental concerns but for business necessities. Which is why it happened primarily with the support of private industry and our tax payers and not the federal govt...or Elon Musk. LOL.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Simon_R » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 15:48:13

Hi Kaiser

Cant stay, got cheese and wine, however, a CCGT when hot ramps at about 1mw per minute, with a 'pause' for the steamy bit.

I know of the tech. specs for only one coal plant and that is a six hour ramp.

tchuss

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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 15:54:42

Simon_R wrote:Where I work in the EU the country has 27% wind penetration (and rising).

We are moments from disaster constantly ;)

however, this is managed by adjusting the wholesale market structure and selling Reliability Contracts and Having a balancing market, where there is a will, there is a way.

Where there are serious financial incentives, it is surprising how many alternative "ways" can be found. (Pick any economic field of endeavor. Energy is just one.)
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 16:21:38

KaiserJeep wrote:
vtsnowedin wrote:I expect a fossil fuel plant that only gets used at night or on calm days is a lot more expensive to run then one that runs 24/7 or daily at optimum capacity during peak use hours. Tell the staff sorry guys don't need you today, the wind is blowing West of the Pecos" :razz:
But before we get there we have a lot of alt energy to build out for that first twenty five percent and we should press forward on that as it is twenty five percent we don't have to waste fossil fuels on or pollute with.


Not so much as you might think. The primary expense with coal is and has always been the cost of the fuel. The remaining expenses including the crushers, feeders, and even today's complex stack scrubbing machinery, are experienced due to mechanical wear and thus proportional to the hours of operation. Coal plants can go from cold to full steam pressure in less than one half hour, although a somewhat longer period is customary.

I hate coal, if the truth be known, and I don't believe that "clean coal" exists. But coal technology is over a century old and quite effective.

I have to think there are some employees that are needed to run such a plant and that they don't work for the minimum wage. Having them sit idle when the sun is shinning on PV farms and when the wind is blowing through the wind turbine farms has to cost quite a bit of cash and has to be accounted for. Perhaps it is not a deal breaker but I would want to see the real numbers to make a decision one way or the other.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 16:39:36

Simon - I also had some doubt about a 1 hr cold startup. But that's far from my background. But I do recall seeing reports long ago that the col/NG plants hardly every go "cold"...they are always in a standby mode to some degree. For instance the power plant (the second largest GHG producer in the country) that just kicked off the largest CO2 sequestration project in the world just 3 NG burners and 3 coal burners. And that regardless of how much electricity the alts are dumping into the grid it is always "running hot"...to some degree.

But more to the point: Texas wind and temperatures are typically rather easy to predict on a 24 hr cycle. For instance we usually know a couple of days in advance of a "blue norther" heading our way. And now that solar is starting to surge in Texas nighttime is even easier to predict. LOL. But seriously our cloudy days tend t be a function of atmospheric that also aren't that difficult to predict. Which isn't to say the system is foolproof.

Such as the ongoing debate over having extra capacity readily available. But the issue isn't alt vs fossil fuels or grid capability...it's strictly financial: who pays for the backup? From 2014:

"Four of the largest power plant owners in Texas warned of regular rolling blackouts across the state within a few years unless it overhauls its $29 billion {as I said earlier: electricity is a very big business in Texas} wholesale electric market.

The prediction by "Texans for Reliable Power" was a response to opposition from big industrial users that have stymied efforts to reform the deregulated power market. Citing the close call for potential rolling outages experienced earlier this week amid sub-freezing temperatures, TRP says Texas could be on a course for "regular rolling blackouts in a just a few short years. Texas continues to see growing demand for electricity. Tight financial markets and low wholesale power prices have stalled construction of most new plants in the state's primary grid, overseen by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT).

ERCOT has warned that blackouts will be more likely as the amount of surplus electricity in the state dwindles. The grid agency and the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC) have made a number of market changes and are studying more radical changes to encourage investment in new power plants. The debate has simmered for more than two years. Regulators, lawmakers and market participants are now divided over the issue.

{Which is the good news/bad news about ERCOT: it isn't one group calling the shots but a coalition of all the key players. Players who can have opposing motivations}

Most companies that own generation, like TRP, along with Texas' largest power producer, support creation of a so-called "capacity market" where generators and others are paid to be available in future years. Large industrial power consumers oppose the additional cost that a capacity market may create. The Texas Oil & Gas Association (TXOGA), whose members operate major refineries, wants to keep the current market design.

Some companies are reluctant to invest because the market is failing to provide a clear price signal. Permits to construct more than 12,000 MW of new generation are in the works, but it is unclear whether any of the projects will advance. Last month, Houston-based Calpine agreed to purchase a power plant near San Antonio, but said it would delay the previous owner's plan to build two "quick-start" power plants at the site until the debate over electric market reform is settled."

{Note: quick-start power plants. IOW we know how to solve the potential problems as we expand our renewable energy system. The debate is who will pay how much of the costs. And even with that task Texas is luckier then the rest of the country: we have our own grid managed by that ERCOT consortium. Imagine trying to deal with all those hurdles by dealing with the public utility commissions in dozens of states and hundreds of different energy providers is the eastern grid. IOW would Manhattan agree with anything the folks in rural Georgia might want to do?}
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Simon_R » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 18:14:19

Outcast, I am not sure what you are trying to say, maybe I am too old and tired.

All power sources are subsidised, FF and Nuk more than most, if that is what you are saying.

The structure of a market does not actually throw huge amounts of cash at people and any cash is linked to penalties, if you do not produce.

Rock. you are right, but this does depend on the bidding strategy, as people that own Coal plants are generally the recipients of Reliability Options (not sure of international nomenclature) so will bid in Low to ensure they are always running, which is a long winded and pompous way of saying, yep you are right.

Wind is indeed predicted up to 14 days out but is not so interesting as it is generally a 'price taker' rather than a 'price setter' in other words it is so cheap to make and you (Generally) cannot turn it off, you bid in at zero to ensure it is running and you accept whatever is the market price, in other words it is crazy cheap, sorry FF and anti wind people

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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 18:57:29

Simon_R wrote:
Wind is indeed predicted up to 14 days out but is not so interesting as it is generally a 'price taker' rather than a 'price setter' in other words it is so cheap to make and you (Generally) cannot turn it off, you bid in at zero to ensure it is running and you accept whatever is the market price, in other words it is crazy cheap, sorry FF and anti wind people

Simon
Perhaps you are missing the point that adverse weather and unpredictable failures occur? Successful companies will have to have both renewable power sources and fossil fuel or hydro sources sufficient to meet all contract requirements regardless of the weather or time of day. The cost of maintaining these alternate sources ready to go 24/7 will have to be included in the total price of power consumed by that system or grid.
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby kublikhan » Sat 11 Mar 2017, 21:12:02

ROCKMAN wrote:Such as the ongoing debate over having extra capacity readily available. But the issue isn't alt vs fossil fuels or grid capability...it's strictly financial: who pays for the backup?
So, who do you think should pay for the backup? I imagine this question will grow in importance as three things are likely to happen:

1. intermittent penetration rates increase
2. natural gas prices rise
3. Solar and wind prices continue to fall

Wind/Solar will look better and better on a per kWh basis however that is exclusive of those rising backup costs. And your quoted article suggests this is already a problem:

Some companies are reluctant to invest because the market is failing to provide a clear price signal. Permits to construct more than 12,000 MW of new generation are in the works, but it is unclear whether any of the projects will advance. Last month, Houston-based Calpine agreed to purchase a power plant near San Antonio, but said it would delay the previous owner's plan to build two "quick-start" power plants at the site until the debate over electric market reform is settled."


Was there any progress since that article was published on a capacity market?
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Re: THE Wind Power Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Simon_R » Sun 12 Mar 2017, 05:34:25

Hi Snowdin

You are correct to a certain extent, but since even thermal plants can have outages, there is a mechanism for covering yourself (Buy from Market/Hedge/CFD) that is not the problem.
As far as a company goes, if I am selling Alt. energy and making a killing, why would I need thermal, that debate goes on at the grid balancing level, way above a single company.

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The backup costs will be built into the market cost per Mwh as there are thermal units that now exist solely to benefit from Reliability options, ultimately (like everything) the consumer will pay, the hope is the cheaper alts will offset the reliability costs.

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