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There is No Holy Grail: Some Perspective on Battery Storage

Today I wanted to share this graphic I found on a pro-nuclear Facebook page that really hammers home the point: we simply require far too much energy for wind, solar, and battery storage to ever be a viable, reliable source of electricity. If the folks who claim that climate change is an "existential crisis" were actually serious about reducing carbon dioxide emissions they would legalize new nuclear power and allow the electricity generated by hydropower that we already buy from Canada to count toward our "carbon free" goals. Instead, the DFL-lead house said these two proposals were non-starters. There is simply no...

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Sunday Funnies: Wind and Solar Edition

Minnesota has spent well over $15 billion on wind, solar, transmission lines, and the profits utility companies make by putting these things in the ground, but we have no batteries capable of storing the electricity produced by wind turbines or solar panels and we're not likely to have them soon. Just 24 hours of battery storage in Minnesota would cost $133 billion, and that is not accounting for the loss in power experienced when it gets cold out, which tends to happen a lot here. In the end, we've blown billions of dollars building battery chargers when we have no batteries! ...

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How Much Would One Day’s Worth of Battery Storage Cost Minnesota Households? $820 per Year, for 20 Years

Last week I was on WCCO's program with Paul and Jordana, and we had a very spirited discussion. I'd highly encourage you to listen to the 12 minute interview if you have time. During the interview, I asked Paul what he planned to do when the wind wasn't blowing or sun wasn't shining, and he emphatically stated that batteries with large posteriors (he used other words, of course), would be up to the challenge of providing electricity when the weather did not cooperate with wind and solar generation, citing examples in Australia and California as evidence for his claim. For the sake...

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Connexus Energy Becomes Nation’s First Electric Co-Op to Bilk Its Members With Solar Plus Storage, Hooray!

Connexus Energy has become the first electric co-op in the country to bilk its 130,000 owner-members by forcing them to pay $31 million in additional costs for unneeded solar plus battery storage. Hooray! I've written about this project before, and as a reminder, the two solar gardens being built will have a whopping 10 MW of capacity, which is the equivalent of 0.056 percent of the installed electricity generating capacity in the state. The batteries will be able to feed 15 MW into the grid at a time and store 30 MWH of electricity, enough for two whole hours! Whoopee! It would be one...

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Connexus Squanders $31 Million on Solar Plus 2 Hours of Battery Storage

Connexus Energy is building two electricity “storage” systems — solar-panel arrays connected to big batteries. Cheerleaders of solar plus storage have hailed this a victory for our state, but in reality, it's another expensive boondoggle for Minnesota families and businesses who will still rely on the grid for the vast majority of their electricity. Adding solar plus storage is just an expensive ornament on the grid that serves as a vanity project for people who fancy themselves to be "green."...

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