Afraid of the Devil

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FEAR: False Evidence Appearing Real

President Franklin D. Roosevelt, during the Great Depression, said, “The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.” He was right!

This is not about Lucifer, the fallen angel, many stories have been written about Satan. Keep reading, you will see.

Unfounded fear is what this is about. Covid-19 and the changing climate are real threats, but nuclear waste from power plants is safely stored on-site under strict federal regulations.

Man-made products create waste and emissions unless they are designed to be manufactured with green components and clean electricity, to be re-used and recycled.

Diablo Canyon

In mid-August, California suffered large power outages, record heatwaves, and unprecedented smoke pollution from massive wildfires.

The Diablo Canyon’s 2,240 MW nuclear power plant will likely be shut down and removed from the California grid. This would be a major blow to the system reliability using solar and wind energy without sufficient storage.

The future of the Diablo Canyon power plant is at high risk only for political reasons. Gov. Jerry Brown is known as a solar energy trailblazer, but Brown has a long history of supporting oil and gas. “He has not put a single limit on oil drilling in the state. It’s literally drill baby, drill,” Jamie Court, president of Consumer Watchdog, said. To keep fracking, he wants to kill nuclear.

Stunning energy results

A 2018 Joule article by the top macro-energy experts, “The Role of Firm Low-Carbon Electricity Resources in Deep Decarbonization of Power Generation,” found the following results:

  1. To stop carbon emissions, we will need a lot more nuclear, solar, and wind electricity plus all the energy storage we can get.
  2. If solar is the low-cost solution, could we harness the power of the sun to stop carbon emissions? No, the rotation of the Earth and variable weather limits the hours and intensity of sunlight, and current batteries do not have enough capacity. The same holds for an energy mix of solar and wind. In fact, it may be better to add a more expensive resource to the grid than a lower cost resource like solar or wind. The UK has the best windy conditions, but the value of wind energy depends on the demand. The UK Grid has purchase agreements with windfarms paying when the wind blows hard, but demand is low!
  3. We have to double the existing nuclear generation in the U.S. as soon as possible, and before 2030.
  4. We need to be building about 7 times faster than the maximum annual rate of additions of wind and solar in 2016.

Macro-energy view

Here are the macro-energy ideas from the 2018 Joule article – the generation and consumption of electricity from the grid changes all the time. No one knows when a squirrel is going to blow-up a powerline transformer or when someone decides to use an electric welder. The supply must equal the demand for energy on the grid. With variable supply and demand, the behavior of the grid is a giant puzzle.

It pays to be green

Volkswagen got in trouble selling high emission diesel cars as “clean” in the U.S. and in April 2017, Volkswagen had to pay a $2.8 billion criminal fine for cheating on government emissions tests.

Now, Volkswagen has been developing a new line of electric vehicles that come without hidden carbon emissions. The entire “balance sheet” is carbon neutral, from the supply chain, production, use, and recycling. The zero-carbon emissions value chain uses green energy in the manufacturing of the batteries and during assembly, with unavoidable emissions being offset by green investments.

Green recovery

To replace gasoline and diesel cars and trucks with electric vehicles, and decarbonize electricity generated by burning coal, gas, and oil, we will need to add one gigawatt of nuclear energy per year.

Did you call your bank? Is JP Morgan fracking with your money?

An October 2020 international economic report says, “a green US recovery would deliver nearly one million more jobs than a return-to-normal plan.” Build back better is Biden Time!

Dr. Luis Contreras

6 COMMENTS

  1. Hey, Luis! ¿Cómo estás? I am confused. You reference “Gov. Jerry Brown.” Did you mean former governor, Jerry Brown, or did you misspeak and mean current governor, Gavin Newsome?

    Thanks for straightening me out!! ;oD

  2. Wind energy is too much or not enough to meet demand

    National Grid has now warned that electricity demand may fall below the ‘baseload’ output from inflexible power plants, such as nuclear power reactors, which can take hours to shut down safely.

    This means that the power plants would have to be switched off to avoid overloading the grid – which could lead to local blackouts.

    https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2020/04/18/wind-farms-could-be-paid-to-shut-down-as-uk-produces-too-much-electricity/

  3. How do you decommission a nuclear power plant? … carefully

    “A nuclear power plant doesn’t just shut down.

    It gets taken apart piece by piece, until almost nothing remains. The process requires billions of dollars, hundreds of workers and more than a decade to complete.

    It’s a fate Pacific Gas and Electric Co. is now planning for California’s last nuclear plant, Diablo Canyon, set to close in 2025. Every step must be carefully scripted.”

    https://www.sfchronicle.com/business/article/Diablo-Canyon-s-dismantling-Inside-the-12826795.php

  4. Diablo Canyon nuclear is at risk of retirement, only to protect coal, oil, and gas power plants

    Without nuclear power, we will continue burning fossil fuels … on the road to hell

    Jerry Brown profits from fracking, aka “Fracking Brown”

    CA rolling blackouts and the Pacific & Gas Electric (PGE) transmission lines giga-fires will be worse in 2021

    It’s literally drill baby, drill: Did Jerry Brown’s climate crusade give Big Oil a pass?

    https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article218290565.html

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