Thursday, September 9, 2010

Global Warming Solved: All we need is 14,600 additional nuclear power plants or 146,000,000 wind turbines

"Green" energy going down in flames

An editorial published in Science today, Farewell to Fossil Fuels?, offers "new insights into just how difficult it will be to say farewell to fossil fuels" to achieve the [unnecessary] reductions in CO2 emissions advocated by alarmists to meet the [fictitious & artificial] goal of less than 2 degrees global warming. That's putting it mildly, since as pointed out in an accompanying newspaper article, "The simple mathematics are that the world needs one nuclear-plant equivalent of carbon-free energy coming on line every day between now and midcentury to put global emissions on a trajectory that would meet the 2-degree goal." One new nuclear power plant coming online each and every single day until 2050 works out to about 14,600 give or take a few hundred. And nuclear is the only known, practical 'carbon free' energy source since,
"alternative energy sources, such as solar and wind electricity, are not adequate to achieve "massive market penetration," which requires utility-scale systems that can store intermittent supplies of power until they are needed. While Denmark and Norway have developed methods for this type of storage, these aren't "widely feasible in the United States, and other approaches to store power are expensive and need substantial research and testing"

Yahoo answers: How many square miles of Windmills equal 1 Nuclear power plant?
Or, how many square miles of Solar Panels?
Where are we going to put them?

A typical nuclear power plant produces 1,000 megwatts of electricity per hour.

At 25 megawatts to 1500 acres for a nice wind farm of 60 to 70 turbines, you would need 60,000 acres and 2400 to 2800 wind turbines to equal 1,000 megawatts. Of course, these wind turbines only produce that much power when the wind is blowing just right. That only happens about 25% of the time, so you really need four times as many wind turbines and four times as much space to produce, on average, 1,000 megawatts of electricity per hour. So that's, 240,000 acres and 9,600 to 11,200 turbines. 240,000 acres is 375 square miles.

At 5 acres of solar panels per megawatt, you need 5,000 acres of solar panels to equal 1,000 megawatts of electricity. Those solar panels only work at peak power levels during the sunny times, so, on average, they only put out about 25% of their rated capacity. That means you really need 20,000 acres of solar panels to generate 1,000 megwatts of electricity per hour, on average. 20,000 acres is 31.25 square miles.

We aren't going to put them anywhere. They are way too expensive and they don't provide a stable enough power supply to rely on. Anyplace with enough open spaces, enough wind or sun shine to be a good candidate is too far away from the east and west coasts where that power is needed most.
Doing the math, the wind turbine equivalent for 14,600 nuclear power plants would require ~5.475 million square miles containing ~146 million turbines. Or only 456,000 square miles of solar panels.

[size of USA: 3.5 million square miles]
Let's get started on those right away

Or maybe just build more natural gas or clean coal plants since they provide inexpensive energy, real unsubsidized jobs, more CO2 plant food, and cool the planet to boot
  Science 10 September 2010: Vol. 329. no. 5997, pp. 1292 - 1294

Farewell to Fossil Fuels?
Author: Martin I. Hoffert

Abstract: One concrete goal adopted by some policy-makers is to reduce the risks associated with climate change by preventing the mean global temperature from rising by more than 2°C above preindustrial levels (1). Climate models indicate that achieving this goal will require limiting atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations to less than 450 parts per million (ppm), a level that implies substantial reductions in emissions from burning fossil fuels (2, 3). So far, however, efforts to curb emissions through regulation and international agreement haven't worked (4); emissions are rising faster than ever, and programs to scale up "carbon neutral" energy sources are moving slowly at best (5). On page 1330 of this issue, Davis et al. (6) offer new insights into just how difficult it will be to say farewell to fossil fuels.

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