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Elon Musk will solve South Australia's power problems in 100 days or its free

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  1. #31

    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    272
    Quote Originally Posted by Skyhook:
    In a very mild mannered way, it's a working political statement, sending a clear message that we don't agree with the way the energy providers have managed to double the price of retail electricity every decade since they were privatised, under the faux banner of ' competition'....

    In my case, I am way in front, I am presently getting paid by my energy provider while we are away, my system paid itself off in just 5 years, so for me it has worked out very cost effectively... Why wouldn't you do it ?
    Thought experiment/ Rant:

    If along with you, over 50% of the customer base went semi- offgrid over those 5 years, only drawing when they need it, what should happen to the price of the power which has to be drawn on those hours/days when your batteries are empty to make it feasible for the entire power grid (coal mine/ gas well, power plant, transmission grid, distribution network, retail service customer care, service contractors) to remain on standby as an on demand concierge? ( And remember, right about the time when your batteries run dry, so does pretty much everyone else as well, so everyone puts on their heaters/dehumidifiers about a similar time and starts expecting the grid to supply them instantly. The 'duck curve' is a real problem.)

    How much longer would it have taken for your set up to break even if power prices went up appropriately to factor in this real increase in cost? Would like to see that spreadsheet.

    Pretty much like you, I'm sure no one likes to see their power bills increase, or to have subsidies taken away (@civilservant, you really shouldn't make the trite comparison of a lack of protest against the removal of the FRT which affects a miniscule, very well off %) . So if the entire grid switched to RE overnight, expect a huge bump.

    Now, I strongly believe we need Renewables + EV to counter runaway anthropocentric global warming. However, while RE prices have fallen amazingly, it's not until RE + STORAGE falls to below existing costs that it becomes a complete solution. At present, huge RE sources actually increase cost and emissions and wasted capital to provide meaningful, good quality power. The problem in SA and Germany/Denmark having negative power prices at times are clear examples of this.

    Subsidies have definitely played a huge part in making RE costs incredibly low (I am a little skeptical of the impact of the global capital bubble, Chinese tax incentives/ subsidies on this fall in costs) and are much needed to advance the frontier of innovation, but unless there's a clear plan to overcome the integration troubles till storage becomes cheap ( maybe in around 5 years?), such grid issues and backlash from stranded customers could damage RE.

    Lastly, I don't see how Economies of scale has become an outdated concept in the last decade. Bulk generation, transmission and distribution will remain cheaper than DIY/ building your own generator in the backyard.

    For an example of how we take for granted what we have today in the form of incredible networks supplying us our needs like magic : Water Protectors

    Disclaimer: With malice to none, I am indeed biased, but have tried hard to present some salient points which I think are being overlooked.

    PS: No, I'm nonplussed as well, as to why I'm so bothered.

  2. #32

    The entire grid will not change to RE overnight. Why do you have to go to such extremes to make a point? Most countries are committed to an 80% goal by 2050. There are lots of problems to figure out. Just because you have cheap storage, doesn't mean it will all just happen overnight either. The issue is about getting the ball rolling. Not wait for someone else to figure it all out for you.

    As to misspent capital. While Canadians were busy installing marble counter tops in their home because it was trendy, Germans decided to install PV, thermal heating, and energy-efficient appliances. Today, Germany is a top player in the market and will play a major global role in helping other countries get of fossil fuel energy. Innovations comes from working on hard problems, not waiting for someone else to figure it out. The former East German areas were able to ride this wave of innovation and overcome the collapse of their industries after the wall came down. 93% of Germans support the energy transition and are proud of what has been achieved. Youth unemployment is at 7%, public debt is low, and the mood is generally upbeat. There's no threat from the far-right in Germany and the Germans did not become the laughing stock of the world in 2016 because a disgruntled work force tried to overthrow the establishment. Yes, ethical choices do make sense, especially projects that involve a large part of the electorate. Now, please tell me. Where does all of this show up in your spreadsheet? I guess it doesn't. Not everything is a calculation my friend.

    HowardCoombs, Skyhook and emx like this.

  3. #33

    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Hong Kong
    Posts
    12,333
    Quote Originally Posted by Apjace:
    Thought experiment/ Rant:

    If along with you, over 50% of the customer base went semi- offgrid over those 5 years, only drawing when they need it, what should happen to the price of the power which has to be drawn on those hours/days when your batteries are empty to make it feasible for the entire power grid (coal mine/ gas well, power plant, transmission grid, distribution network, retail service customer care, service contractors) to remain on standby as an on demand concierge? ( And remember, right about the time when your batteries run dry, so does pretty much everyone else as well, so everyone puts on their heaters/dehumidifiers about a similar time and starts expecting the grid to supply them instantly. The 'duck curve' is a real problem.)

    How much longer would it have taken for your set up to break even if power prices went up appropriately to factor in this real increase in cost? Would like to see that spreadsheet.

    Pretty much like you, I'm sure no one likes to see their power bills increase, or to have subsidies taken away (@civilservant, you really shouldn't make the trite comparison of a lack of protest against the removal of the FRT which affects a miniscule, very well off %) . So if the entire grid switched to RE overnight, expect a huge bump.

    Now, I strongly believe we need Renewables + EV to counter runaway anthropocentric global warming. However, while RE prices have fallen amazingly, it's not until RE + STORAGE falls to below existing costs that it becomes a complete solution. At present, huge RE sources actually increase cost and emissions and wasted capital to provide meaningful, good quality power. The problem in SA and Germany/Denmark having negative power prices at times are clear examples of this.

    Subsidies have definitely played a huge part in making RE costs incredibly low (I am a little skeptical of the impact of the global capital bubble, Chinese tax incentives/ subsidies on this fall in costs) and are much needed to advance the frontier of innovation, but unless there's a clear plan to overcome the integration troubles till storage becomes cheap ( maybe in around 5 years?), such grid issues and backlash from stranded customers could damage RE.

    Lastly, I don't see how Economies of scale has become an outdated concept in the last decade. Bulk generation, transmission and distribution will remain cheaper than DIY/ building your own generator in the backyard.

    For an example of how we take for granted what we have today in the form of incredible networks supplying us our needs like magic : Water Protectors

    Disclaimer: With malice to none, I am indeed biased, but have tried hard to present some salient points which I think are being overlooked.

    PS: No, I'm nonplussed as well, as to why I'm so bothered.
    Good points rarely made by someone outside the industry - are you in power or related? (I am, always interested to find others in HK who are)

  4. #34

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    猴山
    Posts
    23,786
    Quote Originally Posted by civil_servant:
    This is quite tricky to implement. An EV user wouldn't want to have their car drained at night if they plan to go out for a late night drive. Now, if you have some way to opt-out for the night, you run the risk the user forgets and curses at a later stage to find a drained car. An opt-in would create the problem that many users may not bother. I guess some app with notifications could overcome this problem.
    Very tricky but the benefits for lowering the infrastructures costs are potentially huge. It should be done with opt outs etc for a number of times per month etc.

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