They ain't dead yet!

Page 3 of 3  
On 12/24/2011 11:18 PM, Robert Green wrote: ...

I've not tried extensively to model the relative effects; it's a very interconnected problem that only very intensive efforts could really begin to unravel which are causes and which are effects.
But, I'd venture the actual overall demand reductions purely from conservation mandates are, while nonzero and positive, a fairly small fraction of what has been reduced demand from off-shoring and other shifts in various manufacturing and industrial usage. The shift from a predominately product-based to the service and retail dominant economy is, ime, the primary independent variable.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/25/2011 8:52 AM, dpb wrote: ...

Which, of course, is also not really truly independent; there's the whole thing of how piling regulation upon regulation and labor and other production costs owing to both internal and external influences, tax policy and all the rest have driven that shifting that are also all intertwined.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yep. That's why I give people a hard time about being so certain action X caused result Y when there are also variables A through ZZZ to consider. (-:
Take crime stats, which I am pretty familiar with. Is a reduction in crime due to:
a) a better economy, b) better detection methods that take more criminals off the street so less crimes are committed c) better deterrents such as CCTV cameras d) better coordination between law enforcement agencies e) better results from halfway houses and other programs designed to reintegrate crims back into society f) better supervision by parole and probation officers g) better living conditions for poor people h) better education in schools i) reduction of lead paint in the enviroment (seriously!)
You'll find proponents for almost every possible factor, some quite strident in their beliefs. Proving conclusively which factors are the leading ones is close to impossible because we don't have detailed enough information and because the world is a "one off" laboratory. You can't roll it back, change some constants and variables and re-run it to see how things would change. The economic and social interactions of the world are strongly immune to the scientific method precisely because controlled, repeatable experiments are close to impossible. At best, we have surveys and experiments very narrow in scope, like the recent spate of them that show people do NOT always react in their best interest and that Adam Smith's invisible hand presses a lot of very wrong buttons at times.
<<Warren Samuels, a professor at Michigan University who died in August, set about investigating what the originator of the term invisible hand, the influential 18th-century economic thinker Adam Smith, meant by the term and examine how it is applied.>> http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/oct/07/economics-invisible-hand-adam-smith
<<In his book, Erasing the Invisible Hand, he argues that free market thinkers, including Smith himself, were ambiguous about what the term means. A close examination of articles, books and speeches over the last 200 years shows it means different things to different people. Samuels says the academics - and in particular the monetarists and free market cheerleaders of the all-powerful Chicago school, who influenced many senior figures from Margaret Thatcher to Bill Clinton - tailored the term for their own political ends.>>
-- Bobby G.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/27/2011 3:31 AM, Robert Green wrote:
...

I doubt it. Did you look at numbers for ALCOA, for instance? Those electric smelters are quite large.

But, otoh, many have gone to larger capacity and even to multiple units and more features of self-defrosting, ice makers, parasitic loads in the electronics, etc., that are additional loads so the overall reduction isn't as much as what one might think from simply a comparison of two units of the same capacity.
As well, how much is a result of mandates as opposed to simply evolution that occurred anyway is the factor that is certainly very difficult to measure that I think is a major driver that the enforcement-minded want to place far more benefits and far fewer negative consequences on the results of mandates than are justified.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/28/2011 2:09 PM, Robert Green wrote: ...

Baseload new plant generation hasn't gone up much, indeed, but there's been quite a lot of capacity added by (primarily) three methods-- peaking units (virtually all gas turbine/combined cycle and some of those units that were intended to be peaking only are now running essentially base-loaded), upgrades and enhancements at existing plants to raise rated power over that of initial installation (FL P&L adding 100 MWe to each of their four units, Entergy Grand Gulf unit adding roughly 300 MWe--those alone are the equivalent of a full addition 700 MWe plant) and, lastly, while it's not baseload generation, overall there's been quite a sizable installation of wind generation over the last 10 years that have a contribution (I haven't tried to figure a nationwide average capacity all these distributed systems would amount to, but it is probably another 3-500 MWe (WAG). )
So, the utilities are doing what they're supposed to do and protecting us from ourselves, so to speak, by worrying about how to make an end run to prevent such major disruptions despite the barriers raised. At some point, however, there will come a day of reckoning unless the hiatus is lifted. Unfortunately, I fear that the impetus to do so will only come by the appearance of severe shortages that then will be seen as major surprises to those most responsible for creating same.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/28/2011 8:19 PM, dpb wrote: ...

I realized my above estimate had to be way low; that's about the total for only the local area that I was thinking of so I got curious about the overall totals.
The other follow-up link has the data--in 2010, the average power level of wind generation units combined was an effective 10,800 MWe. There was about 40,000 MWe capacity installed so an average capacity factor of about 25% is about right overall. It illustrates vividly the benefit and the weakness in wind being a non-reliable power source--it took 4X the rated capacity installed to produce that 10k MWe on average; at some times it was better but at other times the overall output was probably only 10% or so.
I've previously analyzed and posted some of the results of the Gray County monthly production statistics--in the seven years since been online their cumulative average capacity factor has been right at 40% (far better than the above national average) but the highest has barely broken 50% and there are months for which it is in the low 20's even in the heart of wind country. I have also shown that the correlation between average windspeed and monthly output over those seven years is >80% for every single month which demonstrates clearly the facility is wind-limited in output, not controlled to not produce when wind would be available.
OBTW, that 10k MWe average output was just over 2% of the mix...that did surprise me was that significant a contribution at this point.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/28/2011 2:09 PM, Robert Green wrote: ...

The below link from EIA server shows net generation from 1949 thru 2010
<http://205.254.135.7/totalenergy/data/annual/index.cfm#electricity
Just plotted it in Excel; other than the drop during the early 80s recession and again for the year of 2009, the overall rate of increase is very consistent--there is no really discernible decrease in the growth rate that could be attributed to conservation efforts.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/28/2011 2:09 PM, Robert Green wrote: ...

Meanwhile, our electric co-op added over 100 new electric irrigation pump loads just this past summer. Since those average 200-250 hp each, that's approximately 23,000 kVA additional load. That alone wipes out a whole bunch of more efficient refrigerators and other minor loads.
The point is like the google server farms--the real loads aren't consumer electronics and such; it's the core industrial loads that are the driver for both the grid and economic growth.
Well, actually, the number you gave above for household consumption is roughly 1/4 of the total net generation last year. So, if you could cut that to nothing you'd only reduce the overall usage by 25% or so; saving even 50% of a partial household load just gets smeared out so much it really doesn't make a whole lot of difference.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/27/2011 3:31 AM, Robert Green wrote: ...

Not even close...
From the NYTimes article that says they're using 260 MW continuously, one can get that's about 2300 GWhr/yr.
ALCOA corporate 2010 _purchased_ electric use was 55,883,973 MWhr or 55,884 GWhr. That's a factor of 25 larger. Their total direct energy consumption was another factor of 25 over that, but the table wasn't broken out by energy type specifically and I didn't spend the time to see if it was possible to figure out how much was electricity as opposed to process steam, etc. from auxiliary data.
I don't know that ALCOA is even very close to the highest overall consumer, either, only that certainly Google is pretty small potatoes in the scheme of things.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

"Apply for a permit" says it all. The problem *is* government.

True. No one wants solutions. Might just as well have fun when you can.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/25/2011 8:16 PM, Attila.Iskander wrote: ...

It also was never a truly serious claim... ...
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Sez you! (-;
"It is not too much to expect that our children will enjoy in their homes electrical energy too cheap to meter, will know of great periodic regional famines in the world only as matters of history, will travel effortlessly over the seas and under them and through the air with a minimum of danger and at great speeds, and will experience a lifespan far longer than ours as disease yields and man comes to understand what causes him to age." - Lewis L. Strauss (Strauss who chaired the Atomic Energy Commission in 1954) in a speech to the National Association of Science Writers, New York City September 16th, 1954.
If the head of the Federal agency in charge of nuclear energy says it, people tend to assume it's factual. When he says it to a conference of science writers, you can bet it's going to get repeated quite often.
I heard the "too cheap to meter" claim once again at the 1963 NY World's Fair Futurama exhibit. I remember it clearly because Dad was working on nuke subs at the time.
http://www.google.com/search?q=%22too+cheap+to+meter%22&btnG=Search
Should give you an idea of how much play that one comment got. Serious or not, it stuck in people's minds and I am sure had some effect on the approval of the building of nuclear plants.
So how does one go about evaluating the seriousness of such a claim. It's easy for us nearly half a century to laugh at it, but what was the prevailing sentiment at the time?
-- Bobby G.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/27/2011 4:49 AM, Robert Green wrote:

The seriousness (or lack thereof) of such claims is pretty easy to assess (and was at the time if one were really being rational) by looking at the fora in which they were presented. These were Jeanne (sp?) Dixon kind of futuristic "vision statements" at locations where that was (or at least should be) the expected kind of "maybes" thrown around.
Strong indications in Chairman Strauss' remarks that he was reaching include the elimination of both famine and disease--nobody has faulted him for missing those, have they?
It was also the NY World's Fair in which the GE "House of the Future" was essentially fully robotic, too, wasn't it? Or was that the Disney thing; I forget which, but the juxtaposition of the two is pretty clear the level of seriousness with which it should be taken.
Predicting the future is a wonderful fun but one should always recall how much lack of success anybody has ever had in trying it. Who was it that said there would never be a demand for more than a handful of computers in the world?
I'm sure the utilities never believed it; they did, however, not expect the double-storm of 20% interest rates and the kickback from the anti-nuke lobby to be anything like it turned out to be.
BTW, I was just entering university in '63 in NucE; one of the first things we were told in Intro to Nuclear Engineering was that while fuel costs for commercial nuclear power _might_ become an almost negligible portion of the total operating cost, there was no way the operating and capital costs would ever be transparent.
I went on to receive BSNE/MS Phys (Nuclear Sci) and have spent nearly 40 years in engineering, first with a reactor vendor and then as consultant to various clients mostly commercial utility related from a line of online radiation-based analyzers for coal quality to robotics for man-replacement in monitoring and repair to R&D instrumentation development for both nuclear and fossil generation and much other sidelight stuff along the way.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 1/5/2012 1:40 PM, chaniarts wrote:

Yes; I had thought so but was too lazy to go check at the time... :)
BTW, the question spurred me to go find the following...
<http://www.nei.org/resourcesandstats/documentlibrary/reliableandaffordableenergy/graphicsandcharts/uselectricityproductioncostsandcomponents/
I tried to find any data at all on O&M costs for various green generation but was totally unsuccessful. :(
I know the wholesale price we pay at our local REC to provide the mandated green percentages is about 50% higher than our average cost of our conventional supplies. Why, precisely, I don't know; one presumes the capital-intensive nature and the low capacity factor makes it so when combined w/ the mandate for the distributors to meet the arbitrary percentages so they have a captive market despite the price...
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

TJ Sr. wasn't much thrilled with the idea of the modern computers, not because there was no demand, rather the investment needed was incredible. It should be noted that it was TJ Jr. who was pushing the point at the time. He was the next IBM CEO. The rest is history.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Accounting for CFL savings gets pretty muddy when the power company overcharges you for electricity so that they can underwrite "giving away" bulbs below the cost of production. The bottom line is that you paid full price for those bulbs by paying your inflated electric bill.
-- Bobby G.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Percival P. Cassidy wrote:

Electricity is going to cost more, period. When the new EPA rules go into effect in January, a significant number of power plants will have to be shut down. I can't find the number for Texas (I remember 17), but various reports use the term "many."
Texas is but one of a couple dozen states facing the consequences of this new rule on sulfur dioxide emissions.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I can't find anything either.
He installs garage door openers and makes up stories for a living.
--
Dan Espen

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
HeyBub wrote:

Here's a thought:
While it's true the Congress passed a bill (and I think the president signed it) that removed funding for the enforcement of the ban, the ban is still in place.
What this means is this: If you manufacture, transport, or sell 100-watt incandescent bulbs, no agency of government has the wherewithal to sanction you.
Yet.
But what if a future Congress restored the funding for prosecution? The EPA, CPSC, Department of Boogers, or whoever is in charge of this business pulls out their files - and believe me, they'll be keeping track - of offenders for the past five years and heads to court.
I can see it now: Millions upon millions of dollars flow into the treasury, suitably ear-marked for promotion of renewable energy! Companies that manufacture whale-oil lamps get grants (whales are a renewable resource).
Shouts are heard across the land.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.