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Actually, for me the money quote is this one :

Grid Constraints on Renewable Energy | The Energy Collective

Instead, the fundamental economics of supply and demand is likely to put the brakes on VRE penetration.

Because it makes the ideological frame explicit. As Jake noted initially, the "fundamental economics of supply and demand" are subject to all sorts of constraints in the real world, and there is no reason the electricity sector should escape them.

One technical objection they raise concerns system stability with high renewables penetration; but North America is very much behind on these issues. In Germany and Spain, for example, active system management has pushed the frontiers considerably on this.

The main technical argument they make is clear : on a sunny windy day, generation may exceed demand! Too much energy, oh noes!

But as CH points out, over-capacity is not a technical problem -- modern wind turbines can spill excess energy; also, some industries in Germany are reconfiguring in order to increase energy-intensive processes when electricity is cheapest : demand elasticity will be much greater in the future. So the question is not of the "fundamental economics of supply and demand", but of the economics of the various generating technologies, and how to balance them to achieve the overall goals of public good.

This is where the consideration of who the site's backers are becomes pertinent; the merit-order effect has had a severe impact on the profitability of Europe's fossil-fuel generators, and increasing market share of renewables is likely to worsen that.

The solution is going to include subsidies for on-demand producers for keeping their plant available. These subsidies are philosophically no different from the fixed-price regime for renewables, neither good nor bad in themselves, but useful mechanisms.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Jun 10th, 2015 at 06:40:33 AM EST
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