Fantastic Nonsense: Claims About All Wind & Solar Powered Future Completely Implausible

It takes a special brand of delusion to believe that we’ll all soon be powered entirely by sunshine and breezes. These days, those peddling that myth are guaranteed to be in on the greatest government-backed rort in history.

Fantastic stories continue to appear about our imminent transition to a world that runs entirely on 100% wind and solar. Albeit, with trillions of batteries – said to be capable of accounting for sunset and the kind of chaos delivered by wind power’s sudden surges and complete collapses.

Meanwhile, back on Earth, no country has ever powered itself entirely using wind and solar power; no country ever will.

100 percent “green” energy far from feasible
14 January 2019

WISHING something is so doesn’t make it possible, and nowhere in politics is the gap between aspiration and reality larger than in the push to quickly eliminate fossil fuel use.

Some politicians and environmental activists want to require that all U.S. electricity be generated from renewable sources by the 2030s. That would mean replacing an overwhelming majority of current production, which is generated by coal- or natural gas-fired power plants.

What would such a transition look like? Robert Bryce, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, writes that “deploying renewable energy at the scale required to fuel the U.S. economy would require covering state-sized territories with nothing but wind turbines and solar panels. It would also require stringing tens of thousands of miles of new high-voltage transmission lines.”

When Harvard physics professor David Keith and postdoctoral fellow Lee Miller examined 2016 energy production data, Bryce notes, they concluded meeting present-day U.S. electricity consumption with renewables “would require 12 percent of the continental U.S. land area for wind.” That translates into 350,000 square miles. Thus, Bryce says, meeting the nation’s current electricity needs with wind “would require an area more than twice the size of California.”

In New York, lawmakers are considering legislation to require that greenhouse gas emissions from all sources be halved by 2030 and eliminated by 2050. That would require all electricity to eventually be generated from renewable energy resources.

But Jonathan Lesser, president of Continental Economics, points out that meeting New York state’s electricity needs with wind alone “would require 140,000 turbines — nearly double the total amount of wind capacity in the entire U.S.” If only solar panels were used, New York would need “more than 15 times the total amount of solar energy in the entire U.S.” The solar option would also require “covering 10 percent of the entire state’s land with solar panels.”

Because wind and solar power production ebbs and flows with the weather, relying solely on those sources necessitates use of backup storage. Based on average daily electricity consumption in New York today, Lesser notes, transitioning fully to wind and solar power would require “installing 1.5 million megawatts of battery storage” in New York. That translates into about 20 batteries “in every single home and apartment in the state.”

Put simply, the push to use nothing but renewables requires disruption or destruction of thousands of miles of natural habitat. Resistance to such measures is growing nationwide, including in the country’s most left-leaning locales. Counties in California have banned or restricted wind projects. In the 2018 Vermont governor’s race, both candidates opposed new wind-energy development. Opposition to wind turbine installation is increasing elsewhere across the country.

Like most, we support using a variety of energy sources — so long as they are economically viable and logistically feasible. Suggesting that green energy use can increase without addressing the latter two factors is wishful thinking, not serious policymaking.

And you’ll find cost-effective mega-battery storage, over there.

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.


  1. The blackouts and load shedding are underway in ‘Third World’ Victoria.

    But haven’t we been here before?

    Oh yes, that’s right…

    South Australia!!!

    But then it’s all just a another case of history repeating.

    Propellerheads feat: Miss Shirley Bassey – History Repeating

    Channel – WallofSoundRecording

  2. Colin Megson says:

    Just put this comment on a piece in THE CONVERSATION, by Dave Toke, an avowed anti nuclear actvist:

    Can’t see many cost figures in there, Mr Toke. An 11 year old child could do the simple arithmetic to come up with them.

    I have a facebook group supporting GE-Hitachi’s BWRX-300 SMR. This is a unique design of npp that could not possibly be made any simpler. It is the most cost-effective of designs and down to a quarter of the overnight cost of Hinkley.

    The FOAK GE-Hitachi will be operational in 2030 at $3,000/kW. In 15 years time, the NOAK will be down to $2,000/kW.

    So The political tipping point for nuclear power is upon us and the politics of energy will follow the economics.

    The UK uses 340 TWh per year. 150 of these BWRX-300 SMRs would supply 100% of the 24/7 electricity we use, for 60 years at a cost of £70 billion.

    The USA’s Nuclear regulator says the Emergency Planning Zone [EPZ] for SMRs will be at the boundary fence, compared to the 10 mile radius EPZs for current nuclear.

    They are 100s or even 1,000s of times safer and can be sited near population centres to provide much of the heat too.

    For renewables to supply 340 TWh, desecrating our countryside is a big issue, so maybe solar would creep up to 5% and wind would probably split to 1/3 onshore and 2/3 offshore for the rest.

    Solar would cost £21.6 billion, onshore £63.9 billion, offshore £121.4 billion. Then, when the Sun don’t shine and the wind don’t blow, we’d have to have £30 billion of CCGTs. Backed-up intermittent electricity for just 25/30 years tots up to £236.9 billion So for 60 years that would be around £560 billion.

    Super safe BWRX-300 needing 50 sites, with 3 per site near to population centres would not only supply 100% of the 24/7 electricity needed, but in CHP mode supply much of the heat too. That’s twice the bang for their bucks for investors and well on the way to solving the Government’s biggest headache of decarbonising heating.

    £70 billion for guaranteed 24/7 electricity for 60 years or 8X more cost and 100X more scenic desecration, resource waste, ecosystem destruction, species wipe out and waste mountains.

  3. Reblogged this on ajmarciniak.

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