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  • Live At Copenhagen: Wind Energy Doesn't Cut It

    The Heritage Foundation’s Steven Groves and Ben Lieberman are live at the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference reporting from a conservative perspective. Follow their reports on The Foundry and at the Copenhagen Consequences Web site.

    Below is Lieberman’s first video interview with Martin Aagerup, President of the Danish think tank CEPOS, a group that has done important work on renewable energy and climate change.

    Posted in Energy [slideshow_deploy]

    11 Responses to Live At Copenhagen: Wind Energy Doesn't Cut It

    1. Roger S., Ma. says:

      We need to face one thing squarely: Our current production and consumption, although they may be more, or even much more, energy intensive than what might be achieved in the future due to inventions so far undreamed, are still required in order to advance us to where such invention may occur. "Rolling back" any of it will likely result in stagnation.

      Progress has always resulted from many inventive minds sorting through a chaos of possibilities, from many unprofitable avenues tried and abandoned before the viable ones become accepted. No amount of "Government steering" can "improve" this at any acceptable cost.

      Wind and Solar, due to the mentioned limitations, will not rise to that level any time soon, if ever. At present rates of increase, even if forced, they will not be foreseeably more than a small contribution. Leaves Hydro (also limited), Oil, Coal, Natural Gas, Nuclear, and potentially Agriculture. All have their problems and costs.

      Our best bet remains to concentrate on improving those processes about which we already know a lot. Their efficiencies can be improved more readily than placing ourselves on the bottom of new learning curves of unknown slopes.

      Almost needless to say, we should also continue researching the global climate mechanism until we have more trustworthy models and a wider range of data, and keep this raw data accessible to all, so that not only the "establishmentarian anointed" may contribute. We simply can't afford to predetermine outcomes: Nobody can predict where the next bright idea or discovery may originate.

      (In the early 20th century nobody could predict that a young clerk –about as far removed from the "academic mainstream" as conceivable– reviewing applications at the Swiss patent office would soon revolutionize Physics! We need to remember that before we establish, bless, and fund an exclusive new clique of "true acolytes" of global climate science!)

    2. Arjun says:

      I request the politicians at Copenhagen to please help the wind energy companies other wise these companies will die a financial death. Remember that it is only wind energy which, from the practical point of view, can save the Earth against global warming.

      All the delegates at Copenhagen should donate $1 each to the wind companies of the world in lieu of the cotribution made by them till now. Such act shall be a very good message to the whole world.

    3. Greg Vail, AZ says:

      Wind energy is only practical as a suppliment to other energy sources. Environmentalists fight the erection of wind mill towers at every turn, while spouting our need for it out the other side of their mouth. In order to make wind energy a significant portion of our energy supply, you would have to cover an area the size of Texas, Alaska, and Nevada with towers. No way that is going to happen. Nuclear energy is the way to go. The sooner we can make FUSION reactors viable, the sooner our energy needs will no longer be a concern either cost or environmentally.

    4. Jerry from Chicago says:

      Arjun — Sounds like you've been drinking Gore's Kool-aid. Save the earth from global warming? Please.

      I'll tell you what, liquidate all of YOUR assets and send all of YOUR money to the winf mill companies. Turn off your lights, remove your furnace and air conditioner and get rid of your car and find a bicycle. Cook your food over candles, but be careful not to use too many due to the carbon pollution and all. And try not to exhale too much.

      If your not ready to do all that, please go back to the campfire, singing Kumbaya and We Are the World.

    5. Dennis Idaho says:

      Can anyone tell me, how long does a wind generator have to run to replace the energy that it took to create and install that one unit? There are very large quantities of power to refine, shape and assemble one of these huge machines. Then there is transportation fuel, labor costs. I am sure that these are not maintance free and they all are useless when the wind does not blow. They produce a very small percentage and are not a reliable source of power. They may have useful applications in some areas but it is not the answer to the worlds power needs.

    6. KP, Denver, Colorado says:

      Here in Colorado at the windiest part of our state the backup for the windmills has to be started 7 times per day. It was forcast to be used 7 times per week.

      So a natural gas well has to be drilled near the windmills and piping has to be put from the well and to the jet engine which is the backup.

      Of course the cost of the gas well, piping, jet engine is not included in the cost of the electricity the windmills produce. People would then be able to see the true cost.

      BTW, windmills here in Colorado are able to produce their advertised capacity 9% of the time.

      A week ago we had a low of MINUS 18 degrees F. so I would love to see some global warming ASAP. But with no solar activity I doubt that will happen.

    7. Warren Lyckman, Hill says:

      Windmills were great during the movement to the west during the 1800's. They were one very significant source of power to extract water from the depths of the earth for use by homesteads and their animals. But they will never by any imagination produce the energy supply. never, never,never

    8. Michael Scrimsher B says:

      Wind Power Blows:

      Our politicians are unwise to extend the tax credit for the minute amounts of power produced by these so-called "green" sources. It is a shame to see our tax dollars go to support these windmills that still can’t make it on their own, after years and years of subsides. With all the tax breaks given to subsidize these loser windmills, consumers already are paying a huge premium for this power. Wind power is perhaps the most costly, unreliable, un-useable, landscape destroying miniscule quantities of electricity ever produced. Even staunch (but now dead) environmentalists like Walter Cronkite and Ted Kennedy opposed ugly windmill farms when they threatened their personal vacation spots at Nantucket and Cape Cod in 2005. Wind energy can't be stored for later use; it is most plentiful in the spring when energy use is at the lowest consumption of the whole year. In the dead of winter and heat of summer when we need electricity the most, wind power doesn't provide it. Each half (or more) million dollar windmill produces a relatively small amount of power only when the wind does happen to blow. Wind power can't be relied on at all. Why pay extra for something that can't be relied on? Come look at the acres of landscape destoryed windmill farnms here in Eastern WA. They are sprouting up like mold.

    9. Bobbie Jay says:

      wind and solar will always be inefficient. They are of non-substance, which eliminates the ability to store any energy production, from these two sources.

      The government deemed "fossil fuels" are not contributors of government deemed "man-made global warming." Use what the earth provides, as pollution is reduced and remedied by man.

      It is dangerous to assume all pollution can be eliminated? If this is considered and implemented, people will lose strength of their immune system.

    10. Tom Stacy, Zanesfiel says:

      Does the gentleman from CEPOS consider the ripple effects of additional load balancing requirements in his $100 per ton carbon figure? If so, this is mostly the electricity import costs from other Scandinavian countries and Germany to fill voids. In the USA we have the natural gas requirement for the primary balancing generation. Our regional transmission operators will not share good data at 15 minute intervals.

      This makes it hard to measure the carbon avoidance here, so I wonder will the CEPOS representative please share the calculations used in the comment. Thanks!

    11. Claude Cornell says:

      To lower the global temperature, all we need to do is stifle the hot air that is coming out of Washington and Copenhagen. The whole issue is not about energy power. It's about political power.

      That we certainly do not need.

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