Recently, we have read of energy shortfalls in Germany, the UK and even China. The Chinese energy problems may be contributing to the supply chain issues. What all these stories have in common, with the possible exception of China, is the “Green Agenda.”
Germany’s problems were predicted. The country decided to shut down nuclear power and rely on wind and solar. Relying on solar in Germany’s climate was ludicrous.
Germany’s Energiewende, or energy transition to renewables, is leading to an insecure supply of energy and is affecting the nation’s economy. Germany plans on phasing out all its nuclear plants by 2022 and its coal plants by 2038 in favor of renewable energy, primarily intermittent wind and solar power, which is causing electricity prices to spike and its electric grid to falter. If Germany continues to phase out both coal and nuclear, it will lose the equivalent of 43 percent of 2018 secured output. German electricity prices are already 45 percent above the European average (and 3 times U.S. average residential prices) with green taxes now accounting for 54 percent of household electricity prices.
The Greens are taking down the German economy.Russia and the new pipeline for natural gas cannot supply enough power.
Radical changes are required to remedy the electricity system, including building transmission lines eight times faster than they are currently being built, building new back-up power plants, and installing instruments to control electricity demand, all of which would drive electricity prices even higher.
Britain has similar problems. There, the problem seems more one of cost.
LONDON — Britain’s energy industry could be headed for a significant shake-up, industry insiders have warned, as countries all over Europe grapple with an unprecedented crisis in the power sector.
Wholesale gas prices have spiked across the region, with the U.K. being hit particularly hard.
The front-month gas price at the Dutch TTF hub, a European benchmark for natural gas trading, gained on Monday to trade at 73.150 euros ($85.69) per megawatt-hour, hovering close to the record high seen last week.
Since January, the contract has risen more than 250%.
With China, the problems seem somewhat different. China has an ongoing dispute with Australia that has caused China to boycott Australian coal until this week. The Australian greens oppose the use of coal but allowed export to China in spite of brownouts in South Australia Last summer. However, the Australian greens have imposed a number of restrictions on coal that have contributed to the Chinese problem.
What about the US energy situation?
There are many small reasons for the global energy squeeze, and one big one: Investment in hydrocarbons has collapsed under pressure from the Green agenda adopted by international consensus.
Energy investment in the United States has dwindled as large institutional investors boycott fossil fuel investments. China’s critical electricity shortage is the result of draconian regulation of coal mining, exacerbated by Beijing’s punitive ban on Australian coal imports.
China has ended the ban on Australian coal but the Australian greens are still interfering with exports.
The political pressure of the Green agenda has virtually wiped out investment in the US oil and gas industry. Capital expenditures for US exploration and development companies during 2021 (and projected for 2022) are only a fifth of the 2015 peak of $150 billion.
Meanwhile, oil and gas companies are sitting on mountains of cash.
A change in administration could revive energy production but that is unlikely before 2025. Even a GOP Congress would be limited until the current regime is removed.
Read the whole thing. The charts are particularly interesting.
At some point, the Fed’s game is going to come to an end. The magical thinking of a green agenda financed by endless amounts of printing-press money will be followed by a nasty hangover. Rates will rise and the asset bubble will pop.
Exactly when that will happen is beyond anyone’s capacity to forecast, but the unpleasant September in US equity markets was a foretaste of what we can expect.
21 thoughts on “The “Green Agenda” is already killing the energy industry.”
Ugh. We had a sample this February, with Snowmagedden – what it meant to live with intermittent power, and too much dependence upon solar and wind.
A dark, miserable, cold and meagre existence, with a lot of time spent trying to secure essentials. Like water, and propane.
Yep. Lived thru the Great Ice Storm of ’98:
Definitely not fun! On well and septic so had to melt snow to flush the toilet (no running water either). Used a generator during the day every so often to keep the basement dry by running the sump pump and then just before bed to used it to crank up the furnace to warm up the house to stave off the home getting too cold while we huddled around the living room fireplace to sleep. Took the generator around to the neighbours during the day to help them.
Anyone who know tells me they long for the simpler times of the 1800’s gets a withering stare from me. :)
The trick is, prepare. In Texas, your winters are nowhere near as bad as they are further north, so you’ve got to really worry about only a few weeks–Which, you can usually manage to cope with, by acquiring a large enough propane tank to fire a small generator, and wiring your house to accept input from it such that you can keep the key systems going.
“Ooop north…”, we ain’t got it so easy. Right conditions, you’ve got months of snow and ice to deal with, and if all the energy systems we’ve come to rely on fail…? The die-back won’t be pretty.
The thing that absolutely stuns me about all this is how accepting people are of the whole thing–You can observe this crap happening, yet they keep on letting the idiots remain at the wheel. It’s like being in a car with a drunk driver, and all the other passengers are restraining you from doing anything about it, as he careens across the countryside. They won’t even let you get out of the car…
There needs to be an accounting with these assholes. At some point, “We, the people…” need to wake up, and recognize that they work for us, and that no matter how glib they are about their programs, if it ain’t working, it ain’t working.
Amazon just moved out of Seattle. I give them until 2040, and it’s gonna make Detroit look positively staid, by comparison. Any working people in the city are going to be praying for that Cascadia subduction quake to take away all their problems in the backwash from the tsunami.
But, what’s blindingly insane? They could fix these problems, tomorrow, just by calling the assclowns on their bullshit, and putting them out of office. They won’t do it, though–Even though the city just got done buying a bunch of developments that will never get filled by productive citizens now, ‘cos they drove off the good jobs, and now we’re going to see them re-enact Cabrini Green in all those towers with all the wretched homeless they’ve attracted to the city, in lieu of people with actual productive jobs.
We’re going to be building walls around I-5, or re-routing it in a few decades, in order to avoid that which the city is making itself over into. They won’t have a choice–The crime rates will be too high, and the current setup will be too unsafe.
The whole thing is just incredibly sad, and it’s entirely self-inflicted by all these morons we’ve put into power, and then never held accountable to actually produce results. I don’t give a damn about ideology–If you tell me there’s a homeless problem and you know what to do about it, then I’d better either see fewer homeless on the streets, or you need to go, and go into something other than government… I think you ought to get one shot at it, and if you don’t actually fix a damn problem you got yourself elected to fix, then you need to be held accountable.
I mean, for the love of God, you don’t have a sewage leak, hire a plumber to fix it, and then when you come home to find a bill, the plumber packing up, and raw sewage still running through your house, simply say “Well, he’s got all the right certificates, so he must know what he’s doing…” and pay the bill, living with the raw sewage.
No, you make an objective assessment: Is there still sewage in my home? Yes? Fire him, don’t pay the bill, and find someone else to do the work. Only in governance and academia do we tolerate “failing upwards”, giving these benighted incompetents more and more jobs, ever higher in the food chain.
Fire ’em all, I say.
Fun fact about Germany: The farthest southern point of Germany is at the same latitude as Bemidji Minnesota.
Guess how much solar power they collect in January.
Kirk makes an excellent point: “The thing that absolutely stuns me about all this is how accepting people are of the whole thing.”
Even in Texas, which is the repository of most of our hopes for common sense, there were no lynchings of public officials following the highly predictable power outages which stem from reliance on power sources which can’t run 24/7.
Equally, there have been no would-be political leaders taking advantage of the opportunity to state the obvious — reliable power is the essential priority, no matter what one believes about the ClimateScam.
We live in a world of day-traders. But providing reliable power entails looking years into the future and making investments today that will not pay off for a decade or more. Human beings used to be able to do that — just look at the investments made in California water supply in the early 1900s. Now we can’t. We used to be ants; now we have become the grasshoppers.
Exxon Mobil says they are making progress in making an oil equivalent from algae. But…
“…by Exxon’s calculations, a barrel of algal oil could be worth as much as $350, when factoring in existing low-carbon fuel standards and tax credits that add as much $260 in value to each barrel. Traditional crude oil currently sells for less than $80 a barrel.”
So they are envisaging an energy market in which people are willing to pay (are required to pay) about 4X the current energy price. Which I am sure there are people in the ‘Biden’ administration who are totally fine with that scenario.
There’s not any secret trick to getting oil out of plants, visit any grocery store. The process to convert it into something that won’t kill an engine is sort of worked out, all it takes is money.
I don’t know if this is the same as what David brought up, but I remember reading about something similar years ago. Using the reported yield per acre of pond, I calculated that the oil would form a layer about 0.003 inches thick. Assuming the total depth of the water was 6 inches that would mean you’d have to process about 163,000 gallons of very dirty water to recover about 60 gallons of oil.
Ten years ago, a barrel (42 gallons) of bio-diesel was worth about $378 with all credits and subsidies accounted for. It’s more or less impossible to diesel that isn’t 5% bio so your paying for it every time you buy something.
We used to be ants; now we have become the grasshoppers.
Grasshoppers used to starve. Now they get an endless cornucopia of free stuff from the government. People respond to incentives, even bad incentives. Hence fewer ants.
This is a story about the future plans of a Michigan utility.
The $1 billion earned through the sale will also help fund Consumers’ clean energy initiatives. The company aims to exit its three remaining coal generation facilities by 2025. The plan is to replace that capacity with gas and solar generation. This includes a long-term investment of building infrastructure for 8,000 megawatts of solar power over the next two decades.
That $1 billion came from the sale of a bank- why did this utility own a bank?- and they’re going to use it partially to build 8GW of solar power- bwahahaha- and close coal plants.
Replace that capacity with gas- anyone notice that the cost of natural gas has tripled lately? So far as I know the only reason natural gas became competitive with coal was that fracking vastly increased the amount of gas available, thus reducing the cost. The Xiden Administration has stopped that. And the cost of gas has gone up even more in Europe.
What could go wrong? Well, let me tell you. A year or two ago, in the middle of a bad cold snap, that same utility had a problem with a gas compression station that took it offline. That caused the amount of gas available to produce electricity and heat homes to decline rather severely. Wretched Twitmer, governor of Michigan, even sent out a message to every cell phone in the land commanding her subjects to reduce natural gas usage.
You put all your eggs in one basket, you better hope that basket doesn’t blow up. That’s one problem. Did I mention that the rice of gas has tripled lately- yes I did. That’s another.
Mike K. is spot on. The green agenda is already killing the energy industry. Eventually, there won’t be enough ants available to subsidize the grasshoppers- that is, people who can pay their ever-increasing bill without government subsidies- and the lights will go out.
Get a generator. Expect to need it. You will.
}}} Fire ’em all, I say.
“From a cannon…” is my reply.
}}} Fun fact about Germany: The farthest southern point of Germany is at the same latitude as Bemidji Minnesota.
Yeah, when I was a kid, I looked closely at a globe, and went, “WTF?”, when I noticed that NYC was about the same latitude as Spain… meaning most of Europe is up there like Canada and Alaska. They get lots of livability from the Gulf Stream bringing warm water, and thus more moderate temperatures, than other georegions at that latitude, like, say, Siberia.
The majority of the continental land masses are actually in the Northern Hemisphere.
}}} You put all your eggs in one basket, you better hope that basket doesn’t blow up.
I think that was the message to Texas last winter, too, wasn’t it?
The message to Texas should have been: you trusted your politicians to navigate the energy grid evolution and they decided to cash in on the subsidies from Uncle and created 25% reliance on wind and solar, highest in the nation. They got a nice political and monetary return and we got a cold wake up. Will Texans place blame and vote the jerks out or will they double down and keep the idiots in office? Well, it’s been nine months and no one seems to remember it even happened. Must have just been bad luck or something.
I think that was the message to Texas last winter, too, wasn’t it?
Yes, the cluebat hit pretty hard, I think.
Well, it’s been nine months and no one seems to remember it even happened.
But not hard enough, alas.
If you’re not happy with Texas energy policy- or Michigan energy policy for that matter- who do you vote for to change it?
Both parties are on board with it- demonrats because they are dirt-worshipping pagans, gopes because they love the free money the subsidies bring to their bank accounts and stock portfolios- which leaves essentially no option except obliterating the present idiot politically establishment, one way or another.
In Texas Abbott has a challenger in the of Allen West, Tea-Party favorite who was re-districted out of a house seat in Florida because the establishment was afraid of him. I’m a fan but I don’t think he can beat Abbott. Any democrat would be vastly worse.
In Michigan, if the state gop has any objection to any of these green energy schemes I’ve never heard about it. But then again, I don’t really suspect the Michigan gop of actually existing at this point- I don’t even get fundraising emails from them. The front runner for governor and the only candidate I can think of is the former Detroit police chief, whom I suspect was a democrat until about last week.
I think it will take widespread and repeated outages to stop the green nonsense. Fortunately, those are going to happen. Unfortunately all the idiots who set the disasters in motion will be long gone.
Always remember, “When they say it is not about the money, it is about the money.”
The reason Trump still has so many followers is that he made his money first, then ran for office. Then he told the truth (albeit in Queens salesman speak) and then he kept his promises. When was the last time that happened ?
Or, as Jerry Pournelle used to say, “And use real fire.”
“installing instruments to control electricity demand” – rationing in so many words.
Kill the energy industry and you kill all industry and all affluence-producing activities.
This has been a 50+ year war, beginning with the killing of the US nuclear industry and the war on new hydroelectric plants
An additional factor for China’s coal problem is that this years “unseasonable and unexpected” weather disaster has been in Shanxi Province. They have had a week or so’s torrential rains, which raises water tables. [note, unlike last year’s heavy rains that threatened the Three Gorges Dam, this year’s flooding is in the Yellow River basin and not the Yangtze]. China generates its electricity burning a particularly dirty coal. 1/3 of China’s coal mines are in Shanxi. And apparently now 10% of that 1/3 are now flooded.
Long ago when the world was new and I was younger, stronger, and not too bright I was a hard rock miner for a while. Water deep underground is incredibly persistent and will not just go away, even if the Party wants it to. If you do not pump it out, it will take over. China has been doing massive strict rationing of electricity for all purposes, including industrial [some factories are only open 1-2 days a week] because of the coal shortage.
Given the mindset of Communists, I would not be surprised if they cut off the power to the pumps that kept those coal mines open, because they were short of coal to generate electricity. And it all is the fault of wreckers, hoarders, and capitalist roaders.
This is rated at 800MW, 62-13MW turbines is 806 but never mind. 800 MW is a medium size conventional power plant, and would normally be capable of generating maybe 80% of the 7 GWH of it’s nominal capacity. Even off shore, I’ll be surprised if it does 10%. Then notice the turbines will be built in France. Apparently another job Americans won’t do.
The only saving grace is that this greatly annoys the mukety-mucks on the island that have been fighting this for years when they weren’t telling the rest of us to bike to work.
The idiots in charge of the West really have deluded themselves with the “Renewable” Energy scam. As it happens, the UK Daily Mail has an article today about how the Brits are shooting themselves between the eyes about wind power.
“In 2018, Freedom of Information Act requests filed by the Unite trade union revealed that far from the promised 28,000 Scottish manufacturing jobs in offshore wind, there were just 1,700. And since then, the situation has deteriorated.”
Bird whackers for the North Sea are not even being made in France — they are being made in China and shipped half way round the world. One of the reasons Europe cannot compete with China on building these machines — because China uses cheap coal-fired power to make them!
Historians are going to shake their heads at the persistent insanity of the Woke West.
Don’t forget the cheap forced Uyghur labor, either… I can’t think of any other situation where the idiot class has talked itself into something this irrational and outright evil, for so little real cause.
Of course, most of them know about as much about “science” as I know about what it is to be Venusian. They’re more cult-like followers of the lab coat, hanging on every pronouncement, forgetting how the conventional wisdom of last week was different, and failing to note how it’ll almost always be something yet even more different in the coming weeks.
I mean, c’mon, now… How many times have eggs and coffee been branded as “bad for your health” and then “good for you” over the last many decades? And, again… Why? Oh, of course… The egg thing was because they were predicting a shortage of the damn things. Why’d we move to hydrogenated oils? Government. Same-same with corn syrup… It’s all a pack of self-interested scams.
I guarantee you this: In a dozen years, the whole mRNA vaccine thing will be seen as a huge mistake, a premature deployment that is going wreak havoc across society for health issues. Acquaintance of mine was just telling me that they were doing the grunt work for some of the early testing, back in the late 1990s–The number of weird cancers and other bizarre things that turned up in animal testing were enough to turn her against ever taking anything labeled mRNA, ever. Her descriptions of the cancers they’d find during necropsies of the lab animals were disturbing, and the only thing they could have been caused by were the mRNA agents they were testing with. The control groups never showed any signs of the cancers or other issues; particularly scary were the way that a lot of the cancers were showing up in the reproductive system.
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