Australia’s Failed Wind Power ‘Experiment’ Makes it an International Joke: Wind Power Output Totally Collapses (Again)
Where the wind industry’s propaganda machine has spent the best part of 20 years trying to reinvent the facts, giving perceived substance to myth and fantasy – what American comedian Stephen Colbert defines as “truthiness”, assertions emanating ‘from the gut’ which are made because they just ‘feel right’ – STT has spent its entire existence setting those facts straight and lifting the lid on a raft of others that the wind industry works overtime to avoid.
The big problem for wind power is, and will always be, the W-I-N-D.
Sailors know it. Kite flyers know it. But, for some strange reason, the wind cult simply cannot come to grips with it.
Australia’s Eastern States, with the exception of Queensland, have thrown billions in subsidies at the construction of a couple of thousand of these things; the embattled economic backwater, South Australia led the charge – and earned the (now infamous) tagline ‘Australia’s wind power capital’.
After South Australia’s coal-fired power plant closed in May last year, it also earned the ignominy deserving of a state that simply cannot keep its lights on and which suffers power prices amongst the highest in the world – right up there with wind ‘powered’ Denmark and Germany. [note the prices quoted below are in US dollars]
SA’s power pricing and supply calamity is now world news.
Here’s The Daily Caller’s Andrew Follett helping to place Australia’s energy debacle on the world stage, as a warning to all comers: unless you are prepared to destroy your once reliable and affordable power supplies, don’t follow South Australia’s disastrous lead.
Wind Farms In Australian State Generate ZERO Energy
The Daily Caller
9 May 2017
An Australian state heavily reliant on wind power for its electricity needs generated literally no energy from turbines Tuesday, according to government data.
South Australia generated an average of 35 percent of its energy needs using wind turbines in 2015, but wind turbines provided zero megawatts of power Tuesday afternoon.
South Australia’s reliance on wind power has been a point of contention. An October report from the Australian Energy Market Operator blamed a massive blackout in September on a wind farm that suddenly stopped providing power, destabilizing the grid.
Liberal Party Sen. Chris Back formally called for a moratorium on new turbines after the blackout so the government could do a cost-benefit analysis of wind power. Back said over-reliance on wind turbines drove up electricity prices and posed serious blackout risks in South Australia.
“There should be no further subsidies paid for an intermittent and unreliable power source that can be seen as a proven failure. There are solutions to our climate challenges but wind power is not one of them,” Back told The Australian.
South Australian electricity prices rose to 200 cents per kilowatt-hour during the blackout power crisis. The average Australian currently pays about 25 cents per kilowatt-hour of electricity, according to research by the country’s parliament (view PDF).
South Australia plans to invest another $100 million into green energy.
Where international florists, Inter-Flora liked to ‘say it with flowers’, STT likes to ‘say it with pictures’. And here are a few, courtesy of the boys over at Aneroid Energy: the one-stop-shop for those keen to bust the ‘wind-is-always-blowing somewhere’ myth.
As depicted below, on the Eastern Grid Australia’s 45 wind farms are located in 4 States – Tasmania, South Australia, Victoria and NSW – and spread from: Jamestown in the Mid-North, west to Cathedral Rocks on lower Eyre Peninsula and south to Millicent in South Australia; down to Cape Portland (Musselroe) and Woolnorth (Cape Grim) in Tasmania; all over Victoria; and right up to Cullerin on the New South Wales Tablelands.
Those wind farms are spread out over a geographical expanse of 632,755 km². That’s an area which is 2.75 times the combined area of England (130,395 km²) Scotland (78,387 km²) and Wales (20,761 km²) of 229,543 km².
The total notional capacity connected to the Eastern Grid is 4,395MW, with 1,698MW in Victoria (population 5.8 million), 1,726 in South Australia (population 1.6 million) and the rest in NSW and Tasmania. So let’s have a look and see how the whole fleet has been faring in May:
Hmmm… No, that’s not a minimalist impression of Mt Everest, that’s the entire output of Australia’s 50 wind farms spread over the South-Eastern corner of the Continent for the first 2 weeks of May.
Let’s drill down and see how Jay Weatherill’s team was helping to put the results of his wind power obsession on the map:
When some wind cultist starts telling you about how SA gets 40% of its power from the wind, pop the graph above in front of them and ask, ‘when?’
Most of the time SA’s wind farms are producing ZERO% or a level so close to zero that what’s being produced is simply an annoyance to the grid manager trying to keep the thing from collapsing.
Let’s take in the period referred to in Andrew Follett’s piece, Tuesday, 9 May and the days following with daily wind power output across the entire Eastern Grid:
Bear in mind that what appears above and below is the combined the effort of machinery alleged to be capable of producing 4,395MW – after lunch on Tuesday, all that that massively subsidised mess could manage was a risible 10MW. And the following day wasn’t anything to write home about, either:
Having collapsed by a grid-killing 400MW in the space of an hour or so (Australians should thank their lucky stars for those dreaded coal-fired plant still chugging away in Victoria and NSW), the ‘team’ struggled to hold the line at 100 MW for most of the day: that paltry performance amounts to 2% of the combined capacity of 4,395MW.
And, on Thursday, the effort was even more pathetic (note the scale on the vertical axis collapses), with the entire collection of the Eastern Grid’s whirling wonders only briefly topping 300MW (less than 6% of capacity) at either end of the day, with demand at its lowest; for the bulk of the day less than 50MW (or less than 1% of capacity); and sinking below zero at 4pm, with wind turbines in their hundreds literally sucking power out of the grid to keep their onboard systems (cooling fans, yaw control, hydraulic pumps, brakes etc) working, despite the absence of so much as a breath of wind across the entire South-East of the Continent.
Anyone engaged in pushing the ‘truthiness’ of wind being able to ‘power’ Australia (or anywhere else for that matter) is in desperate need of professional care and/or medication: but the cult are not just delusional, they’re certifiably dangerous.
Any sailor could have pointed out just how fickle the wind can be and the risks attached to attempting to rely on it to get anywhere, anytime soon.
If your country has yet to launch into the lunacy of wind power, take a leaf out of the Australian’s book and don’t.