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View Diary: Response to Buffet's Investment in Wind Power (82 comments)

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  •  Yes, massive investment in "the grid" (6+ / 0-)

    is needed to make this into reality.

    Even Germany, which has massively invested in the grid is struggling with these issues (which actually benefits the US considering that our cheap energy is attracting their investment/manufacturing facilities, for whatever that is worth).

    •  Got a cite for that? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Phoenix Woman

      not in right wing media?

      The Dutch are buying cheap german wind power to make
      aluminum.

      •  Is the Washington Post right wing? (4+ / 0-)

        Probably, but I'm not sure what is particularly "right wingish" about observing reality, such as: European industry flocks to U.S. to take advantage of cheaper gas

        Or Reutters

        (Reuters) - BASF (BASFn.DE) chief executive Kurt Bock said German jobs could be lost if the chemicals giant has to start paying electricity grid fees to shift the burden of funding a renewable energy infrastructure to large companies.

        Without the grid exemption BASF would have additional costs of 400 million euros ($533.98 million) running its Ludwigshafen headquarters, Bock told the magazine.

        "This sort of magnitude means that the competitiveness of the location would be under threat," Bock told the paper. Electricity is already twice as expensive in Germany as it is in the U.S., Bock told the paper.

        Since 2011, Germany exempted large chemicals, metals, glass and building materials companies from paying electricity grid fees as a way to help its industry remain competitive despite having to put up with some of the highest power prices in Europe.

        •  methane is a feedstock (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Phoenix Woman

          so it helps in plastic synthesis to have a lot of it.

          but you referred to electricity.

          •  Yes, and electricity is cheap in the USA (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Phoenix Woman

            because of the downward price pressure applied by fracked methane.

            So cheap, in fact it is putting coal fired plants out of business (which Germany, by contrast, is current putting INTO business).

            •  random fluctuation (3+ / 0-)

              Germany's soft coal burn is within average
              for the last 15 years

              they've chosen for policy reasons to wipe out nuclear
              and it's taking some time to fill that gap,
              i'd bet another year or two and coal starts it's terminal
              decline.

            •  I'm not exactly an advocate of "fracked methane", (6+ / 0-)

              and the toxic and massive collateral damage associated with it.

              Face it, frackers are scrambling to put as much of their disgusting and dangerous production capacity into service as quickly as possible before the long-term damage potential is fully known and evaluated. We must stop being lulled by the corrupt fracking industry into thinking that their "solution" is even a good short-term answer, let along a long-term one.

              It's still a fossil fuel (greenhouse gas, no carbon benefit) and its production side-effects are hideous.

              "Bernie Madoff's mistake was stealing from the rich. If he'd stolen from the poor he'd have a cabinet position." -OPOL

              by blue in NC on Wed Dec 18, 2013 at 08:57:59 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  It's basically a deal with the devil (3+ / 0-)

                a few million jobs today, eternal damnation later.

                A lot of people think very short term, so the former (jobs today) tends to hold more weight over the latter (eternal damnation).

                •  Even those jobs aren't real. (0+ / 0-)

                  All the job estimates for tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of jobs for Keystone XL proved to be so much hot air.  There were estimates that seemed based on real manufacturing and construction needs that placed the jobs created in the hundreds, not even thousands, and those wouldn't necessarily last longer than the time to build the pipeline.  The next increase in jobs would be for the inevitable cleanups.

                  •  They are quite real to the people who (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    ColoTim

                    have them.

                    And I'm not sure what Keystone XL has to do with that, it hasn't even been built (and actually would probably have the opposite dynamic if it were).

                    •  I was thinking of the claims about Keystone XL (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      divineorder, blue in NC

                      made by all the groups promoting it.  They claim that it will produced tens or even hundreds of thousands of jobs and they imply that those are long-term jobs.  

                      Neither of you mentioned the pipeline.  I apologize for unintentionally threadjacking this off into the Keystone XL weeds and away from the fracking industry that has produced thousands of jobs that you were writing about.

                      I will pay more attention next time, and hopefully the times after that.

              •  Fracking (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                blue in NC, Social Contract

                absolutely must be banned worldwide forever. So that's not a solution either.

                edwardlcote.blogspot.com

                by Edward L Cote on Thu Dec 19, 2013 at 01:00:02 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  warren buffet says otherwisr (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Social Contract

              http://reneweconomy.com.au/...

              Recent contracts for wind energy in Texas have been written as cheaply as $25/MWh. Granted, that includes a tax credit, but it still represents wind energy at a levellised cost well below $50/MWh. This is similar to prices struck in Brazil, where 2.3GW was recently allocated at an average price of $47/MWh. The prices undercut coal and gas fired generation by such a margin that Brazillian authorities had to create a separate auction mechanism for those fuels, although there is no doubt whether they will bother.

              Wind energy may have been around for several decades, but it is still enjoying significant cost decreases. Bloomberg estimates turbine prices have fallen 26 per cent in the last two years, and new structures and mechanisms, not to mention the interest of Buffett and other mainstream investors, are bringing down financing costs as well.

        •  So it's just companies demanding more Gov welfare (0+ / 0-)

          Fossils and nukes get 50 times what solar does form the gov in the USA.  

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