21.16 The Failure of RE in Europe
To signal the failed energy policies of the UK and Europe.
Currently the UK House of Lords is conducting an inquiry into the cost of Net Zero.
The Critical Issue
John Constable of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) has questioned the UK Government’s cost of achieving Net Zero, claiming that is significantly underestimated, citing former Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Lawson’s suggestion that the cost will be 2 to 3 times the estimate of 1.4 trillion pounds.
Constable confirmed that the GWPF is currently undertaking a detailed analysis of the Government’s calculations and he noted that many of the assumptions are not supported by empirical evidence and indeed fall well short of the
21.15 The Impossible Task of the Green Energy Transition with Existing Technology
Background. The Energy Security Board is preparing recommendations for market reforms to make the green energy transition as quickly as possible
The Problem. The fundamental problem is the gap in supply of wind and solar power on windless nights. Very high levels of installed RE capacity provide no power in the absence of wind and sun.
Windless nights are the limiting factor in the process, in the same way that a chain is only as strong as the weakest link and the flood protection wall is only as effective as the lowest point. For information on the depth and duration of wind droughts see note 20.2
21.14 The False Claims about Net Zero Progress Overseas
Purpose: To explain that Australia cannot be accused of underperforming in the quest for net zero.
Background. When overseas national leaders make verbal commitments to move towards net zero, many commentators think that this means we are making progress.
Almost the only evidence of progress is the statements themselves.
Countries world-wide are failing to live up to their self-imposed obligations under the Paris agreement – where the goals are often nominal – let alone the tougher requirement of net zero.
Not everyone is convinced that we need to be alarmed about CO2 emissions and that is a topic for another note. This note is about the difference between the alarm that is expressed and the actions, or lack of actions, that
21.13 The Quality of Science Teaching in the Schools.
Purpose: To call for a Parliamentary Inquiry into the teaching of science in schools.
Background. It is clear from a growing number of reports that there is widespread circulation of false and misleading information about climate science in schools.
Steps to introduce common courses across the nation have contributed to this situation.
Misinformation is provided by teachers functioning as green activists and some is taught by teachers who do not know any better.
The critical issue. Public debate on climate and energy issues will only be helpful when everyone has access to reliable and diverse information and there is civil discussion of competing ideas.
This debate cannot be helpful while cohorts of students emerge every year from the
21.12 The Capacity of “Big” Batteries
Purpose. To explain that even the biggest “big batteries” cannot provide grid-scale dispatchable power.
We are informed by AEMO that the energy transition is inevitable. “This system is now experiencing the biggest and fastest transformational change in the world.”
At least 15GW of coal power is expected to close by 2040, to be replaced by some 36GW of wind and solar power.
The intermittent input from wind and solar will have to be “firmed” (backed up) by “dispatchable” power from some combination of gas generation, storage in batteries and storage in pumped hydro reservoirs.
The dual function of big batteries
One of the planned functions of big batteries is to provide almost instantaneous inputs to counter