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  •  US built about 20 gigs of pumped hydro decades (1+ / 0-)
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    Thermodynamics applies to batteries too, so what?

    Whats with this distributed stuff? Come on, we need to think in the multi hundred gig area.

    Theres nothing wrong with distributed solar. Except that the levelized cost of operation over 20 years for a PV panel on someones house isnt remotely competitive... yet.

    WE need 500 gigs of renewables.

    Its about what we can do NOW, whats off the shelf.

    Wind under 7 cents
    Pumped hydro
    Solar thermal

    But we wont need any storage until after we have 20% from renewables.

    SO build wind and HVDC, wait for solar to drop in price, and invest in R&D and develop more solar thermal pilot projects, and Pumped hydro.

    FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 12:28:21 PM PST

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    •  Climb Down Off the High Horse (0+ / 0-)

      I wouldn't dispute most of which you've written, but some of it is just fanciful.  I never argued for or against any sort of distributed power arrangement, for example.

      Your claims about pumped hydro are just risible though.  We aren't going to see many more, if any, pumped hydro facilities being built because the good sites have all been taken and those left are tied up in NIMBY.  The only viable pumped hydro would likely be on major bodies of water like the coasts or the Great Lakes, where we can create artificial lagoons to create enormous low head hydro facilities.  We ain't gonna be building pumped hydro in places where the sun shines 95% of the time and the rain don't fall.

      I'm all for building out a Federally-supported HVDC backbone system a la the Federal Interstate Highway Program in order to create a national power grid.  Just as the highway program was funded a national fuel tax, we could use a national kW-hr tax on wheeled power to help fund the system.  It would use construction resources we have available in abundance right now and create a stabler, healthier economy over the long run.  It also offers the advantage that individual investors could then decide what form of renewable energy they wanted to invest in or if they wanted to invest in power storage systems.

      "Love the Truth, defend the Truth, speak the Truth, and hear the Truth" - Jan Hus, d.1415 CE

      by PrahaPartizan on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 10:41:40 PM PST

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