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Forced Responses: Dec 2019

Filed under: — group @ 6 December 2019

Open thread for climate solution discussion. Climate science discussions should remain on the Unforced Variations thread.

854 Responses to “Forced Responses: Dec 2019”

  1. 551

    Am I just imagining that E-P claimed Sweden as an example of decarbonization via nuclear power?

    A distinctly different picture emerges when you look at this info:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_in_Sweden

    https://sweden.se/nature/energy-use-in-sweden/

    Yes, nuclear is important at ~35% of electrical generation, but it has only decreased since 2005, when two units closed. Meanwhile, renewable energy–hydropower primarily, but with a significant wind component (~10% of electrical generation in 2015)–is currently at 54%, and rising. “For the power sector, the target is 100 per cent renewable electricity production by 2040.”

  2. 552
    nigelj says:

    Engineer-Poet @546, yes I was hoping to stir up a bit of debate. Ha ha. Just a bit of harmless trolling on my part, nice well mannered trolling.

    “Non-military reactors generally can’t ramp fast enough to deal with the ups and downs of wind and PV.”

    This article suggests otherwise:

    http://news.mit.edu/2018/flexible-nuclear-operation-can-help-add-more-wind-and-solar-to-the-grid-0425

    Do remember my point ultimately relates to politics. I can’t see a huge problem with wide scale nuclear power and using the excess heat as you mention makes sense. Frances mostly nuclear system seems to work ok and its well managed.

    The problem is that a lot of people elsewhere are very nervous about nuclear power, but human nature being what it is they would possibly accept a system with about 25% nuclear power in the mix. It’s what people do they compromise, for good or bad. That’s the realist part of me talking, not the technical enthusiast part, such that it is.

    I do also think you over hype the downsides of renewables a bit.

  3. 553
    nigelj says:

    Kevin McKinney @541, thats what Finland does. It pays teachers well, trains them well and treats them like professionals. Won’t provide a link because their education system is easily googled. Its a very progressive system, but without going overboard.

    And I agree about feminism its basically a good thing, although it does get a bit high jacked by the man hating extremists at times. Women in the workforce = economies of scale = greater wealth. And sure enough the wealthy countries have the most women in the workforce and least barriers.

  4. 554

    Kevin McKinney wrote @549:

    1) I searched for any empirical evidence supporting the assertion in the first sentence, but found nothing. Cites, please?

    You (a) did a very poor job of searching, and (b) obviously live in an ideological bubble, because everything I said has been common knowledge in the edublogger community for literally decades and has been the subject of many articles over the years.

    https://qz.com/334926/your-college-major-is-a-pretty-good-indication-of-how-smart-you-are/
    https://www.testive.com/average-sat-score/
    https://chariotlearning.com/average-sat-score-by-intended-college-major/
    https://www.joshuakennon.com/sat-scores-ranked-by-intended-college-major-show-teachers-are-below-average/

    I was shocked to learn that education majors had scores BELOW ethnic and gender studies majors.

    Feminism has energetically attempted to reverse this reality, albeit with regrettably limited success. (For instance, by promoting wages for housework….

    Wages paid by whom, do you think?  And wages are subject to taxes.  It’s a recipe to tax families to death.

    The program is to subject the domestic economy to taxation and literally drive women out of the household into outside work which pays wages and taxes (and subjects them to things like sexual predation from bosses).  You cannot see this for what it is.

    seeking to correct implicit biases in the system that result from things like the ‘child-care differential burden’ that holds back women in the workplace.

    We had a much better society before women had to become a major part of “the workplace”, when one wage supported a household.  We were even better when most citizens were not wage-slaves but yeoman farmers, independent businessmen like smiths, and so forth.  Taxation barely touched them, and they were governed, not ruled by fiat.  Those were the days.  I’m far too young to remember them personally, and I doubt there are any still living who do.

    Probably a bigger factor–albeit one that synergizes with #3–is the systematic underfunding of public education, including but not limited to teachers’ salaries.

    You can blame teacher union insistence on uniform salaries for that.  The piss-poor educational achievement of most “education” majors makes it an abomination to hike their salaries to STEM-grad levels.  It would not improve their performance and the public knows it.  But the unions prevent adoption of pay differentials for difficult-to-fill specialities like math, chem and physics because jealousy, so the funding remains set at the lowest common denominator… which seems to have no shortage of applicants.

    if we’re worried about the quality of education, the best response we could make would be to pay teachers better, and to treat them as actual professionals.

    Including being able to sue them for malpractice?  Count me in.  I’d LOVE to be able to bust teachers for teaching pre-adolescent kids about sexual perversions, or inculcating racial and sexual guilt for things they not only had nothing to do with but are too young to understand.  Using ridiculous curricula like “Common Core” math which “teaches” multiplication by drawing and counting innumerable dots is child abuse, and so is use of known-to-be-defective reading methods.  Drum them out of the profession, and the administrators too.

    Wind and solar will be the backbone of the generation system, with hydro and nuclear supporting, as well as various forms of energy storage and management.

    Prove it.  That’s not even true in “Green” Denmark; the Danish grid is held up by Norwegian hydro, Swedish nuclear and German lignite.  Until recently Denmark’s CHP systems were largely coal-fired, and Denmark has turned to burning other country’s forests and calling it “renewable”.  It is neither renewable nor sustainable and cannot be generalized; it’s the dead-est of dead ends.

    But from everything I can see, the ‘nuclear as silver bullet’ strategy that E-P proposes is apt to be about the most expensive possibility of all–if ‘possibility’ is even the right word, given how politically toxic nuclear power is generally.

    Politics can change on a dime.  Physics cannot change.  Which are you going to rely on?

  5. 555

    E-P 554: We had a much better society before women had to become a major part of “the workplace”, when one wage supported a household.

    BPL: When my father died in 1974, the credit card companies cancelled all the cards my mother held jointly with him. Sexism was not a good thing and discrimination against women is no better than any other form of stupid, odious bigotry.

    E-P: We were even better when most citizens were not wage-slaves but yeoman farmers, independent businessmen like smiths, and so forth.

    BPL: And a third or so of the country were actual SLAVES. Good God, you have a rosy view of history. You might want to take an actual history course some time, because you come off like a real ignoramus.

  6. 556
    Stuart Baanstra . . . says:

    I climate change if it finally means the extinction of the human race!

  7. 557
    Stuart Baanstra . . . says:

    I love climate change if it finally means the end of the human race!

  8. 558
    nigelj says:

    EP @554

    Oh what the heck. I might as well join the debate on feminism. Frankly if we are to come to grips with climate change mitigation, we will need plenty of women in the workforce anyway just to get the job done.

    “We had a much better society before women had to become a major part of “the workplace”, when one wage supported a household. We were even better when most citizens were not wage-slaves but yeoman farmers, independent businessmen like smiths, and so forth. Taxation barely touched them, and they were governed, not ruled by fiat. Those were the days. I’m far too young to remember them personally, and I doubt there are any still living who do.”

    I don’t think things were really better back then, taken on the whole. Some things were better and perhaps we should try to recapture them. But only some things.

    If you can’t remember those days how can you really say they were better? Its the sort of thing you would probably need to personally experience. I was a child back in the 1970s when many mum’s were stay at home mum’s so I do remember some of it.

    My mum was a stay at home mum, in the main. I don’t know how families did it back then, given most parents have to work these days to make ends meet. But perhaps some of the answer is that houses were smaller and cheaper then etcetera. We just expect so much more these days, like larger homes and more technology, and better healthcare and someone has to fund this hence both parents typically work. This is the simple answer. Occams Razor and all that…

    My point is were times ‘really’ better in the past? Or is it rose tinted spectatcles? I think you will find very few women and not many men would want to go back.

    And despite families with both parents working, kids are pretty nice these days. I don’t see robust evidence this generation of kids are worse than past generations. On the whole.

    I’m not entirely dismissing your concerns. Like many things there’s probably a sensible middle ground. A “sweet spot”. I do think mothers should be at home with children for the first couple of years of life whenever possible.

    “Probably a bigger factor–albeit one that synergizes with #3–is the systematic underfunding of public education, including but not limited to teachers’ salaries.”

    “You can blame teacher union insistence on uniform salaries for that. The piss-poor educational achievement of most “education” majors makes it an abomination to hike their salaries to STEM-grad levels. It would not improve their performance and the public knows it. But the unions prevent adoption of pay differentials for difficult-to-fill specialities like math, chem and physics because jealousy, so the funding remains set at the lowest common denominator… which seems to have no shortage of applicants.”

    Not a terribly logical argument. Surely under funding originates with the politicians who make basic funding decisions. I quote Finland again and teaching is well funded there because society and politicians value doing that. They are a market economy but they are not a slave to market forces either, and they see that deliberate funding choices should sometimes be made.

    And again Finland funds teachers well and teachers perform well, and so do students, and so does their high income society. There’s no robust evidence that America should be different.

    But I agree teachers who teach the hard sciences should be paid a bit more.

  9. 559

    E-P, #554–

    OT ALERT!

    You (a) did a very poor job of searching, and (b) obviously live in an ideological bubble, because everything I said has been common knowledge in the edublogger community…

    The logical corollary of that is that the “edublogger community”, whatever that is, must exist in a separate ‘ideological bubble,’ or else is swimming in some sea of everythingness. Omm…

    Thanks for the cites. I notice, however, that of the 5 only the first actually placed education majors at the bottom of the list. The others were partially redundant, just being SAT rankings variously packaged, but it’s interesting to note that on those rankings, ed majors rank somewhere around the 1/3 mark.

    It’s even more interesting, though, to note that the first source you cite says:

    Why has the rank order of average academic aptitude across various areas been strikingly the same? That remains unclear. For one thing, however, it reflects upon the majors and resulting occupations that US culture has consistently valued for the last seven or more decades.

    Seven decades… that would take us back to 1950, which was 15-20 years before “2nd wave” feminism got going. So while that particular source does support your contention about the test ranking of ed majors, it signally fails to support your IMO rather bizarre claim that “feminism” is to blame.

    The program is to subject the domestic economy to taxation and literally drive women out of the household into outside work which pays wages and taxes (and subjects them to things like sexual predation from bosses). You cannot see this for what it is.

    While you, of course, are completely omniscient about what your ‘enemy’ intends? You should’ve been a general, not an engineer.

    We had a much better society before women had to become a major part of “the workplace”, when one wage supported a household.

    I haven’t met too many women who think so. Or people of color. FWIW, I don’t think so, either.

    And for the rest of your “we were better off when” musings, all I can say is, have you somehow turned into Killian? No doubt the past has its points, but to me that hooha read as pure fantasy.

    Your next paragraph–beginning “You can blame teacher union[s]…”–is a veritable Gish gallop of ‘wrong.’ Addressing those mistakes:

    –It’s again pure fantasy to think that, had teachers only been ‘reasonable’ and worked against their own best interest (unlike corporate CEOS, who are only reasonable when they do the exact opposite), magnanimous state legislatures would have paid whatever necessary to ensure the best personnel were attracted to the profession.

    –You exaggerate the ‘shortcomings’ of ed major; the data you cite puts them about 50 points below the mean, whereas engineers are about 50 points above. I don’t think a reasonable person would call that differential “piss poor.”

    (And, FWIW, when I took the GREs in 1989, my results were considerably better than anything on that chart, despite the fact that I’d then been out of school for 11 years. Were I as prone as you to misplaced sneers, I’d say the attainments of the whole lot of them, as measured the GRE, were “piss poor.” But I digress.)

    –In fact there are quite a few incentive plans to lure STEM teachers.

    –There is a very serious teacher shortage. For example:

    http://neatoday.org/2019/04/03/how-bad-is-the-teacher-shortage/

    Yeah, STEM is the worst, but it extends across the profession. Except maybe music teachers; music schools have been cranking out grads at rates far exceeding available jobs in ed. (And technological change has killed a whole lot of other musicianly jobs that used to exist. But I’m digressing once again.)

    Including being able to sue them for malpractice? Count me in. I’d LOVE to be able to bust teachers for teaching pre-adolescent kids about sexual perversions, or inculcating racial and sexual guilt for things they not only had nothing to do with but are too young to understand. Using ridiculous curricula…

    Uh, dude, where did you get the idea that teachers choose curricula? That’s done by politicians, virtually everywhere in the US.

    Oh, and by the way, I write this having just spent the day with (mostly) delightful 5th-grade kids, whom I was predominantly teaching about factoring and fractions.

    /OT

    I said “Wind and solar will be the backbone of the generation system, with hydro and nuclear supporting, as well as various forms of energy storage and management.”

    Your challenge was “prove it.” I’m not sure how I’m supposed to “prove” a prediction; it’s more or less the essence of predictions that they haven’t actually happened at the moment of articulation.

    You then rant about Denmark’s present and past, with a charming mix of inaccurate and irrelevant assertions, as if that said all that much about the future. Nonetheless, Denmark is planning to increase its wind power generation dramatically–and why not? They’ve become a world leader in wind turbine manufacture, to their benefit.

    I’ve previously pointed out that your precious Sweden is banking on a renewable future. I’ve pointed out that while Ontario–my natal province–does indeed rely heavily on its nuclear and hydropower ‘backbone’, it wasn’t able actually shut down the coal fleet until it added natgas (6%) and wind (8%). (The last reactor commissioned in Ontario was Darlington 4, back in 1993; the last coal plant was only shuttered a couple of years ago.) I’ve pointed out that Uruguay decarbonized almost completely, with the mainstay being wind.

    I could now point out that there now about 15 nations–most but not all small economically–that produce 80% or more of their electricity from renewable energy. There are another 16 or so (including Canada) above the 60% mark.

    And I’ve definitely pointed out what seems to be an enormous economic advantage held by RE. That’s the main reason that I made the prediction I did. Modern RE is cheap, effective and highly modular, which means it scales very, very well. It and nuclear power (as well as hydro) are great complements to each other, which is why I advocate for the preservation of most existing nuclear capacity and for continued research. (True, I spend a lot more time advocating for RE, because we have a whole boatload of FF to boot off the grid, and I don’t see anything else that seems likely to accomplish that.)

  10. 560
    nigelj says:

    https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1029/2019EF001221

    New research of interest: “Advancing the understanding of adaptive capacity of social-ecological systems to absorb climate extremes”

    Article is free to read. I’m NOT suggesting adaptation is preferable to mitigation, quite the reverse, its just an interesting free article and not too technical.

  11. 561
    nigelj says:

    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1111/gcb.14987

    Not a peer reviewed paper, but a very substantial contribution: “Causes and consequences of eastern Australia’s 2019-20 season of mega-fires” Whole article free to read.

  12. 562

    nigelj writes @552:

    This article suggests otherwise:

    I respect Jenkins but in this case he’s simply wrong.  The author paraphrased him thus:

    Rather than disabling a solar panel or wind turbine, Jenkins points out, it makes more sense to operate the nuclear plant at a lower output and to absorb as much free wind or sun as possible.

    The reality is that nuclear fuel is changed on a schedule during low-demand parts of the year (spring and fall), whether it is exhausted or not.  Unless the plant is ramped down so much that its next refueling can be deferred another 6 months, all that’s accomplished is to substitute one emissions-free source for another:  totally useless climate-wise and economically too.  The unused energy potential of the fuel is simply thrown away.  We can NOT afford such silly gestures.  There are other limits on ramping, such as the buildup of the neutron poison xenon-135 if power is reduced too far.  Physics trumps politics.

    It makes far more sense to find uses for “surplus” energy, both heat and electric.  For instance, instead of closing down, the Duane Arnold plant in Iowa should become the main boiler for the state’s ethanol production and distillation.  Diverted steam could be returned to the turbine as fast as closing a valve, making the plant as a whole highly “flexible” while using 100% of the nuclear heat potential and not changing the reactor operating condition at all.

    Utility Dive just ran an opinion piece which touches on this issue.  It’s also wrong in a bunch of ways (only considers LCOE and doesn’t include the escalating costs of intermittency and storage with increasing penetration) but it includes this insightful ‘graph:

    What new markets will develop for inexpensive intermittent electricity?

    Future research could consider that the market will evolve so that power marked as “curtailed” in the current model will be sold to new loads adapted to use intermittent power at a discounted price — such as aluminum smelters, cellulosic ethanol plants and hydrogen plants.

    In other words, much of the power that appears to be curtailed in the model, could actually be sold, if it is reliably available at a discounted price in appropriate industrial areas. “Reliably” meaning enough of it is produced each year to make a factory economically viable; but not necessarily that the power is predictable at an hourly, daily or even monthly scale.

    ICYMI, the author is talking about dump loads.  The main difficulty with dump loads is getting the capital cost down to the point where you can run them profitably at small fractions of their net capacity.  Further, if they are going to have a substantial role in managing the system, a LOT of power is going to have to be sold to them at very low or zero cost.  This drives up the price which must be charged to everyone else.

    Also something highly topical from OilPrice.com:

    Just two decades ago, air pollution was a top concern for many environmentalists. Now, carbon emissions and their effect on climate seem to have taken over the environmental narrative and, as the research from NBER suggests, this is leading to neglecting important issues. Meanwhile, there are voices—and some of them are authoritative voices—that are warning a full transition to a zero-emission economy is impossible without nuclear power, which is virtually emission-free once a plant begins operating.

    None other than the International Energy Agency—a staunch supporter of renewables—said in a report last year that the phase-out of nuclear capacity not just in Germany but everywhere could end up costing more than just increased carbon emissions as the shortfall in electricity output would need to be filled with fossil fuel generation capacity, just like it is filled in Germany.

    Why can’t renewables fill the gap? Here’s what the IEA had to say:

    “If other low-carbon sources, namely wind and solar PV, are to fill the shortfall in nuclear, their deployment would have to accelerate to an unprecedented level. In the past 20 years, wind and solar PV capacity has increased by about 580 gigawatts in advanced economies. But over the next 20 years, nearly five times that amount would need to be added. Such a drastic increase in renewable power generation would create serious challenges in integrating the new sources into the broader energy system.”

    Translation: we are not adding wind and solar fast enough and we can never add them fast enough without risking a grid meltdown.

    Don’t talk to me about this, I’m just the messenger.  If you have a problem with it, take it up with them.

    Do remember my point ultimately relates to politics.

    People have to decide if they want “renewables”, or keep the planet from burning.  I’m hoping that Australia will have an epiphany and kick off a preference cascade.  Note that Australia has a number of dunite deposits and is well-positioned to start the process of CO2 mineralization for atmospheric remediation.

    The problem is that a lot of people elsewhere are very nervous about nuclear power, but human nature being what it is they would possibly accept a system with about 25% nuclear power in the mix.

    No voter in the USA, Europe or Canada has been hurt by radiation from commercial nuclear power.  No voter even KNOWS someone who’s been hurt.  All of this fear is driven by propaganda.  If we can convince people that they’ve been lied to all their lives, we may be able to fix that problem.  Start by introducing them to people who work at nuclear plants.  They don’t glow green or have 3 eyes.  These are people who know the risks better than anyone… and go to work every day.  The people who know nuclear energy best of all, love it.  That says something.

  13. 563
    Al Bundy says:

    Mal accuses mrkia of not having a plan to save what’s left of the world.

    He’s executing his plan: stick head in world. ‘Nope. No problem here.’
    ______

    Nice spike, Kev. Swedish Beach Volleyball team caliber.
    _______

    mrkia, note that your vape video begins in the middle of an argument. Look at that maga-guy’s face. He just said something to hook a victim. You look up to predators, mrkia? (A real question)

    mrkia: I know the answer to that: it’s bad because it doesn’t agree in lock step with your viewpoint – because leftists are so tolerant of other views. NOT!

    AB: Actually, I first saw the rag when I was a relatively conservative teen. Its pontifications were laughably inept.

    “Reality has a liberal bias” is based in truth.

    Liberals are about a standard deviation more intelligent than conservatives. So if we define “normal” as the IQ of a typical liberal, a typical Conservative is borderline mentally challenged (flirting with a dx of one of those insulting labels)

    So no, it isn’t “other” opinions, it’s dumb as ef opinions which are held by Tamino’s Proud to be Stupid corps.
    ______

    EP: Feminism, by devaluing women who work with children, has everything to do with this.

    AB: LOL! Feminism is the reason that teachers with masters degrees need second jobs to keep up with a Man with a trade school Diploma?

    Feminism demands that traditionally women’s work be valued and compensated as well as Men’s Work.

    In fact, if you look at your list of robot and AI vulnerable professions, you won’t find much ‘women’s work’ beyond drudgery. Perhaps men are going to become way less valuable to society.
    ______

    zebra: How is energy storage not “essential to their purpose”?

    AB: He told you. The three phases add up to zero. The THREE capacitors juggle electrons among themselves so as to warp the magnetic fields into alignment with the physical motor. Zero net storage during normal operation, and it could be done without capacitors at all.

  14. 564
    Al Bundy says:

    EP,

    If efficiency were the only consideration, would you build a three-phase motor with or without capacitors in its control circuits?

  15. 565

    BPL wrote @555:

    And a third or so of the country were actual SLAVES.

    Not even close.  The black fraction of the population of the English colonies peaked at 21.4% in 1750, before there was such a thing as the United States of America.  Not all of them were slaves either; AAMOF, the man who established chattel slavery in Virginia, Anthony Johnson, was himself an African from around the region now called Angola.  Johnson, a free man after working off his indenture, sued to be granted ownership-for-life of his own African indentured servant, one John Casor, who had served out his term of service and gone to work for a man named Robinson for wages.  Johnson sued Robinson to get Casor back.

    The English judge who heard the case decided in favor of Johnson on the grounds that Johnson’s culture held that slavery was for life.  That was the earliest and perhaps worst example of “multiculturalism” implemented in the Americas, but don’t worry.  Today’s American left is still trying to break records and will probably go down in the history books as even more hideous on their own demerits, such as hormonal and surgical mutiliation of children they deem “transgender”.

    When my father died in 1974, the credit card companies cancelled all the cards my mother held jointly with him.

    Which was probably part of the contracts governing the cards.  If your father failed to read the language and see that your mother was taken care of properly, it wasn’t the CC companies’ fault; it was his.  My father did a far better job.

  16. 566
    Al Bundy says:

    Nigel,

    Working is expensive. Transportation, clothes, eating out, childcare, stuff. And our society has gotten extremely inefficient. How many highly intelligent minds are now wasted playing with insurance and retirement and financial infighting? Bookoos of neurons are laser focused on how to slice the pie a bit more to their clients’ advantage. And those clients now have to work, to expend mindshare, on stuff that is nonproductive.

    EP’s lament is misplaced. Back in the good ol’ days everyone (whites sans white-trash and single women) got education, healthcare, retirement, and stuff without all the grubbing. Everyone

    We’re 4x as productive and working more cuz it’s all consumed by grubbing, war, and the cost of being employed. If the US government had spent the F35 bucks on taxpayer-owned designs for nukes, vehicle drivetrains, solar, wind, etc, we-d be able to enjoy a bit of our 4x productivity. EP is correct that about a 50% employment rate can make for a good life, but I think gender is irrelevant. Both partners can work part time or they can swap, with one partner working a year then the other are options that would satisfy EP’s concerns (if you share them) without resorting to, um, _____.
    _______

    Kevin,

    Why 5th grade?

  17. 567
    nigelj says:

    KM @559, that list of countries by renewable energy was a good find.

  18. 568

    nigelj wrote @558:

    If you can’t remember those days how can you really say they were better?

    Social and cultural confidence.  Children were viewed as a blessing and family was sacrosanct.  The majority brooked no challenge to their position; if you didn’t like their USA, you were free to go back home.  They continued to grow and improve things year after year for decades.

    Contrast today.  Pretty much the entire West has such a crisis of confidence we can’t even keep out primitive tribes-people who have to be taught how to use flush toilets, light switches and even doorknobs.  Lots don’t speak our languages and are effectively unemployable, but somehow their situation is now our responsibility for which we are supposed to feel guilty.  When their children assimilate to a culture of street gangs rather than hard work, we’re supposed to feel guilty about that too.

    Would the generation that fought WWII have put up with this?  What did we lose between then and now?  Whatever it is, it’s definitely in deep decline if not entirely gone.

    I think you will find very few women and not many men would want to go back.

    The technology we have today would make it a snap to repeat the Apollo moon landings.  A single cell phone has thousands of times the computing power that ran those rockets.  Had we the cultural confidence of 1960, there would be men on Mars today.  Instead, we have people blaming “institutional racism” and “implicit bias” for the failure of racial minorities to perform in school, and children are literally being beaten up for it on a daily basis.

    despite families with both parents working, kids are pretty nice these days.

    Yes, but how are they doing on Readin’, Ritin’ and ‘Rithmetic?  In the USA, the public schools are so bad that children taught by their own parents radically outpace public school students academically.  We have “academics” claiming that reading to children gives them an “unfair advantage” in life.  (Are minority parents UNABLE to read to their children?  Is it RACIST to expect them to?  These are questions nobody should even bother to ask.)

    I’m an atheist myself, but even I can see that where Christianity has faded, its mind-share has been taken over by suicide-cults of “social justice” and “anti-racism”.  Those cultists really ought to be in asylums for the insane, but we closed those down several decades ago.  We don’t just let them run loose on the streets along with schizophrenics who won’t take their medication, we let them have jobs in academia and government.

    Surely under funding originates with the politicians who make basic funding decisions.

    In the USA, much of it originates with taxpayers who approve or deny proposals for new taxes to finance schools.  People who know just how poorly the system performs are not going to give it more money until it corrects its course, which it shows no sign of doing.  And of course every time there’s a surge of “ESL” (English as a second language) charity cases who require disproportionate spending and they have no power to refuse, expenses and hostility both go up.

    The USA is on the fast track to Balkanization, and it won’t be pretty.

    And again Finland funds teachers well and teachers perform well

    Finland is literally not the rest of the world.  Deal with it.

  19. 569
    jgnfld says:

    @554 et. al…

    Well, E-P’s ideological blinders and filters are now explicitly exposed. They are pretty much as expected and pretty much dead in line with vic’s.

  20. 570

    E-P 562: No voter in the USA, Europe or Canada has been hurt by radiation from commercial nuclear power.

    BPL: Epidemiological studies and the aftermath of Chernobyl say otherwise.

  21. 571

    E-P 562: The people who know nuclear energy best of all, love it. That says something.

    BPL: It says that people in that industry want to preserve that industry. What a SHOCKER!

  22. 572

    E-P 565: And a third or so of the country were actual SLAVES.

    Not even close. The black fraction of the population of the English colonies peaked at 21.4% in 1750

    BPL: In South Carolina just before secession 58% of the population were slaves. And in any case, does the exact number matter? You said things were better when most people were yeoman farmers; I pointed out that in that time, a lot of people were actual slaves. Way to miss the point, E-P.

    BPL: When my father died in 1974, the credit card companies cancelled all the cards my mother held jointly with him.

    E-P: Which was probably part of the contracts governing the cards. If your father failed to read the language and see that your mother was taken care of properly, it wasn’t the CC companies’ fault; it was his. My father did a far better job.

    BPL: My father didn’t expect to die of leukemia at the age of 48, and I doubt any credit card from any company in 1974 gave wives good terms. Insult my father again and you and I can meet somewhere and settle this personally, you stupid, smug bastard.

  23. 573

    E-P 568: the entire West has such a crisis of confidence we can’t even keep out primitive tribes-people who have to be taught how to use flush toilets, light switches and even doorknobs.

    BPL: And their skin is the wrong color!

  24. 574

    Miscellaneous comments–

    #565, EP–

    OT ALERT!

    What utter twaddle! It matters not a fig whether the proportion of slaves in the US was 1/3, 1/4, or 1/10–though as a side note, in this state the slave population was at one time well over 50%.

    Slavery was a massive and hideous moral evil, disfiguring the US in multiple ways, which was BPL’s point. And yes, it’s also one the legacy of which continues to do so via ongoing cultural distortions including ‘implicit bias’ and ‘systemic racism.’

    Which was probably part of the contracts governing the cards. If your father failed to read the language and see that your mother was taken care of properly, it wasn’t the CC companies’ fault; it was his. My father did a far better job.

    So, let me get this straight: you think that it was BPL’s father’s fault that credit card companies had gender-based discrimination as standard policy? (And he’s right about that, by the way; it was SOP back then. We have family history around that issue, too.)

    #566, Al, asks “Why 5th grade?”

    I mostly do middle- and high-school subbing–target, 2 or 3 days a week, though subs are in *very* high demand*, so you can work every day if you want–but this particular gig came up at our local elementary, which I enjoy.

    *In part because the pay sucks–no, too weak, the pay really sucks!–so people who are more-or-less competent and who are also willing to do it are in constrained supply. Some state lawmakers clearly realize that they are not doing a good job of emulating a free market, but the rate of change is slow. Still, a good chunk of the state surplus–yes, SC has a budget surplus right now–will very probably go into more raises for teachers. I expect we’ll at least get back to regional pay parity, and maybe better than that, depending how the political winds do blow, blow, blow.

    /OT

    Slight less OT, but still WRT #566, I agree about the ‘inefficiency’ of our society–I think. But I feel that characterizing that inefficiency accurately might be a very interesting exercise indeed. Does it lie in the relative growth of the financial industry? Or also, perhaps, in an increasingly poor alignment of market incentives and structures with humanly relevant outcomes? Capitalism, of course, exists to sell. But IMO, at some point buying hits a point of diminishing returns.

    Some here see this and reach the radical but in some ways not unreasonable conclusion that capitalism is ‘the problem.’ Abolish it, and all will be, if not well, then at least affording more scope to be well. I’m a bit skeptical about that; my ‘big idea’ is that ‘big ideas’ are very seductive and very dangerous. Human life is a complex affair, and optimum results will never be attained via the reification of a single guiding principle. So–and I’m not dogmatic about this, because I don’t focus on it that much; I already have enough and more than enough to learn about!–I suspect that we’ll do better to retain a semi-free market existing in what I like to call ‘creative tension’ with suitable regulations, laws, and norms. Competition is good, but the competition shouldn’t be modeled on war, but rather on its moderated cousin, football (whether your preferred flavor of the latter is American, global, Aussie, or Canuck).

    And then there’s E-P’s #586.

    OT ALERT, again!

    Pretty much the entire West has such a crisis of confidence we can’t even keep out primitive tribes-people who have to be taught how to use flush toilets, light switches and even doorknobs.

    I really thought I’d seen the most ridiculous nonsense that E-P was capable of–but no. Does he know that migrants quite often arrive with cellphones? Cheap ones, to be sure, but still. Or that there is a significant migration pathway from the Old World to the US via Brazil and then overland through Mexico, which obviously means that migrants must negotiate airports? Hasn’t he noticed that every single migrant is clothed in basically the sort of garb you’d find at any random mall in America? Doesn’t he know that the number of true ‘tribes-people’ existing in the world today is a tiny, tiny fraction of humanity?

    And finally, has he failed to notice that every single migrant getting here on their own, and a great many of the tiny minority being brought in via the formal refugee resettlement process, has managed, often with very few material resources, to negotiate journeys of thousands of miles? Because regardless of what their ‘educational attainments’ may be, anyone who can do that clearly has a lot of practical capability, drive and resilience, AKA ‘potential.’

    That’s probably why immigrants generally prove to be, en bloc though of course not in every individual case, net assets to the country in which they settle. (And yes, integration into society costs, no matter what; but it’s usually an investment that pays off over time.)

    E-P really, really needs to reality-test his own pronouncements. IMO.

  25. 575
    zebra says:

    #563 Al Bundy,

    “dancing electrons”

    AB, sorry if you were offended by my comment about your lucidity, but you seem to have been dancing a bit too much yourself lately.

    Your comment here is just silly… I didn’t expect you to be like Victor as well.

    As before, I provided what qualifies as a primary source:

    https://passive-components.eu/an-introduction-to-capacitor-based-power-factor-correction-circuits/

    It says:

    “How does a capacitor help in improving the power factor? In an AC circuit, magnetic reversal due to phase difference between current and voltage occurs 50 or 60 times per second. A capacitor helps to improve the power factor by relieving the supply line of the reactive power. The capacitor achieves this by STORING the magnetic reversal ENERGY.”

    If you disagree with the people who actually do this stuff for a living, then it is a bit like Victor telling Gavin and Tamino how to interpret data.

    I thought for a while that EP was just stubborn about admitting to making a verbal error, but I’ve come to realize that he is embarrassed because he actually didn’t understand how it worked, in terms of physics, until this discussion.

    This is not surprising in the sense that people can get engineering degrees by plug-and-chug, memorization, pattern recognition on tests, and so on. Many of those people are just fine and productive individuals, but then there are those who harbor resentment because they couldn’t get past that level.

    Often, they are the ones who have severe Authoritarian psychologies, as we see here.

  26. 576
    zebra says:

    #559 Kevin McKinney,

    “You exaggerate the ‘shortcomings’ of ed major; the data you cite puts them about 50 points below the mean, whereas engineers are about 50 points above.”

    A couple of points on this very useful observation.

    There is this remarkable (if not surprising) failing of logic from the rote-learning community that rants about Common Core and all that diversity stuff.

    If all someone is going to do is stand in front of a classroom and have the kids recite multiplication tables, what exactly is the necessary qualification?

    I certainly score above the engineers, but I am in awe of people, male or female, who devote themselves to understanding childhood development and psychology, and who try to apply some of that in absurdly overcrowded classrooms, while integrating it with the conceptual complexities of the subject matter. College freshmen and sophomores is about all the challenge I could ever cope with. (Especially because they have so much trouble with fractions, eh.)

    So, to me, the “test” for who would make a good teacher is just the opposite of scoring well on old-fashioned standardized subject-matter tests. Rather, they should be screened with ‘advanced’ Common-Core type questions, which demonstrate thinking, and adaptability, and nuance, and creativity. They should be able to demonstrate understanding, by applying fundamental principles, rather than reciting by rote, and getting good grades because they memorized the test questions.

    So that +/- 50 points is an orthogonal metric.

  27. 577

    On capacitors and energy storage, I’d say that it all depends on temporal frame of reference: if you’re talking about sub-one-cycle-at-system-frequency, then clearly a capacitor stores energy, until it discharges as the cycle comes around.

    If you’re talking about longer timescales, then Al’s ‘no net energy storage’ seems accurate enough to me.

    But remind me again why I’m supposed to care? If ever I knew, I’ve totally forgotten.

  28. 578
    nigelj says:

    Al Bundy @566,

    excellent points but I did wonder about that myself actually. The way I thought about it is “we are working a lot to enable us to work a lot”.And as you say a lot of this work is cleverly disguised non work. Believe me I know this : I deal with lawyers.

    However despite all that, I think my response still holds true. The reason women work as well as men today is principally (but not only) because of things like larger homes, better healthcare etc. But the factors you mention form a humungously large subset. Or maybe its about equal and we are treading water.

    And your talk about better pensions and social security back in the 1960s holds true, but is obviously irrelevant to the point. We still have healthcare now, more of it in fact, but its delivered differently.

    But I prefer the greater social security of the past and we could bring that aspect back. We definitely dont need to bring back “a womans place is in the home” as EP was twittering on about.

  29. 579
    zebra says:

    #557 Kevin McKinney,

    The significance is that EP has been making a fool of himself trying to deny that he didn’t understand the physics for this particular application… the function/purpose of the capacitors is exactly what the reference says…to store energy for each cycle.

    But I am always up for a conceptual discussion in physics, Kevin, so maybe you or AB could explain what exactly this term “net storage” means.

    Try to keep in mind that old saw “energy can neither be created nor destroyed”, OK?

  30. 580
    Al Bundy says:

    Kevin,
    No. The three capacitors as a group never store anything during constant operation, even momentarily. They shuffle among themselves. Of course, this optimal situation requires three phase.

    Zebra,
    I saw EP pontificate correctly. Then you said he was wrong and gave as evidence an elementary irrelevancy.

    EP was/is right.

    I am not saying your irrelevant factoid is wrong. It’s right.

    I am saying that my internal visualization of you is under stress.

  31. 581
    nigelj says:

    On capacitors, storage and power factor correction.

    Zebras reference is interesting and could well be correct, but the three references I read say something a bit different, namely that the capacitors job is to provide reactive power that is absorbed by motors. This stuff is easily googled so Im not going to provide a list of links other than I looked on wikipedia and capacitor suppliers websites. It’s confusing for this non expert to see these contradictions.

    More specifically, capacitors provide leading (or negative) reactive power to cancel out the following (positive) reactive power of motors. Thus motors get the reactive power they need to function but you get rid of excess reactive power from the circuit as well.

    I’m assuming that what the capacitors do is they convert the stored energy to this negative reactive power where current and voltage are out of phase in a certain direction. But its clear capacitors create negative (leading adge) reactive power. I’ve seen discussion of oscilliscope tests on this, the maths on it a series of differential equations relating the changes in current and voltage and sines and cosines and god knows what. I get the general picture of the maths, and you can’t argue with the maths.

    But it leaves two questions for me:

    1) why does this seem to conflict with Zebras textbook explanation talking about capacitors storing magnetic energy? Or is it two sides of the same coin?

    2) what is the physical mechanism that allows a capacitor to form leading edge (negative) reactive power? (possibly something to do with instantaneous voltage and the plates taking longer to charge up, but just a guess and not a full answer obviously. )

    Not that I care that much, but I don’t like mysteries and contradictions.

  32. 582
    Al Bundy says:

    Kevin,

    You’re right. It’s a stupid thread. The only reason for it is EP’s ever-so-lovely talking style and pure White sensibilities crashing into zebra’s muleheadedness.

    Ya gotta admit it. We’re a pack of misfits.

  33. 583
    nigelj says:

    jgnfld @569 yes EPs ideological leanings are clear. But they are quite different to Victors. EP leans conservative and to the right, while our Victor leans to the left and has said so. His climate scepticism appears to me to originate more from the “mitigation will hurt the poor” angle. Hes wrong.

  34. 584

    Kevin McKinney wrote @559:

    The logical corollary of that is that the “edublogger community”, whatever that is, must exist in a separate ‘ideological bubble,’

    Projection; you are provably ignorant, they are not.  You’ve also failed to own your bad search-fu, and you haven’t even begun to ask why your news sources kept this information from you… and what else they’re keeping from you, and how they are misdirecting your attention to keep you away from this and other important issues.

    or else is swimming in some sea of everythingness. Omm…

    The human mind can barely drink from that firehose; it certainly can’t take it all in.

    it’s interesting to note that on those rankings, ed majors rank somewhere around the 1/3 mark.

    On the lists that include pursuits considered more to be trades than professions.

    Seven decades… that would take us back to 1950, which was 15-20 years before “2nd wave” feminism got going.

    About a decade after Rosie the Riveter, though.

    While you, of course, are completely omniscient about what your ‘enemy’ intends?

    All you need is to read the explicitly stated Marxist program for the “bourgeois family”.  There is a similar “deconstruction” program in doctrinaire feminism albeit couched in deceptive terms like “justice”.

    There is a very serious teacher shortage.

    Because a great many ed-school grads are driven out of the business by the failure/refusal of administrators to enforce basics like discipline.  Allowing things like this to go on should be an open-and-shut case of administrative malpractice, but we are cowed by rhetoric like the “school-to-prison pipeline”.

    Uh, dude, where did you get the idea that teachers choose curricula?

    So teachers don’t choose their own methods and working conditions?  Then they’re not professionals.

    Your challenge was “prove it.” I’m not sure how I’m supposed to “prove” a prediction

    You could give an existence proof (and no Sweden isn’t it, as its mainstay is hydro which cannot be scaled or translated to other geography or climates).  Unfortunately for you, as France added “renewables” it replaced 100% emissions-free nuclear with part-RE, part-fossil and emissions have been going UP.  This is exactly what skeptics like me and Michael Shellenberger predicted; despite this, there is no change in policy nor even admission of error.

    The USA and Europe have been on a massive “renewables” kick since the 1970’s oil price shocks made “Energy Crisis” a household term.  I remember when Jimmy Carter famously replaced all the White House thermostats and put solar panels on the roof.  Here we are, 43 years after the peanut farmer took office, and we still do not have a single wind-turbine or PV panel factory that’s powered by wind and PV.  We don’t have a single industrial-sized emissions-free grid that isn’t primarily powered by some combination of hydro and nuclear (there are a few islands running mostly on PV and batteries but you can’t afford to run factories there).  We are promised “storage” but the best we’re offered is an 80% solution when we need a 200% solution (massive negative emissions) and we need it NOW.

    43 years is long enough to pronounce something a failure.  That goes for social policy as well as energy policy.

    I’ve previously pointed out that your precious Sweden is banking on a renewable future.

    Sweden initially decarbonized with 24/7/365 nuclear.  It remains to be seen if Sweden’s hydro reservoirs will prove equal to the task of filling in for unreliable wind.

    I could now point out that there now about 15 nations–most but not all small economically–that produce 80% or more of their electricity from renewable energy.

    Albania:  100% RE, 100% hydro.
    Brazil:  80.4% RE, 65.8% hydro.
    Congo:  100% hydro.
    Costa Rica:  97.7% RE, 73.8% hydro.
    Ethiopia:  93.6% RE, 86.2% hydro.
    Georgia:  80.7% RE, 80.6% hydro.

    etc. ad nauseam.

    As I keep telling you, there are NO “renewable” success stories that aren’t dominated by hydro.  Brazil gets far more power from biomass than from wind (sugar cane bagasse is a lot of it).  The columns for % from wind, solar, geothermal etc. in that table are generally empty, probably because the numbers are an embarrassment.  If it wasn’t for the formatting screwup that messed up Afghanistan and everything below it, I would have been able to copy to a spreadsheet, calculate them and do a sort on that data.

    And I’ve definitely pointed out what seems to be an enormous economic advantage held by RE.

    And I keep telling you that this advantage is fraudulent, because “RE” is neither forced to provide its own firming/storage, nor is it held accountable for its fossil backup using the atmosphere as an open sewer.

    Modern RE is cheap, effective and highly modular, which means it scales very, very well.

    When France concluded “no gas, no coal, no oil, no choice” and went nuclear, it went to near-zero emissions in just 18 years WITHOUT system games like importing entire forests of wood pellets from other countries.  We’re still waiting for Denmark to catch up (games or no games), and forget Germany.

  35. 585
    nigelj says:

    Engineer-Poet @562

    OK so using the nuclear power station at lower output so that wind and solar power can maximise output doesn’t make all that much sense. But it was speculation on the part of the writer. It was not his main point.

    Most of the article was devoted to nuclear power plants ramping output up and down to deal with wind and solar intermittency, especially when there’s not enough wind and solar power, and the article stated nuclear power plants can do this, and in fact some are being used to do this right now.

    At least you didn’t call the anti nuclear people crazies. You have to empathise with them a bit while explaining why the danger is overblown. Everyone has their reasons. I used to be very sceptical about nuclear power due to the possible dangers. Firstly Chernobyl blew up when I was young. Secondly my father was diagnosed with cancer due to exposure to radiation from the Nagasaki bomb blast. He was in the army radio corps, and was in Nagasaki shortly after the bomb blast, 2 weeks I think. Fortunately it wasn’t fatal either, but you can understand my scepticim about nuclear power at that stage when I was quite young. perhaps the doctor was wrong but I took him in good faith.

    ———————————————————–

    Engineer-Poet @568

    “Social and cultural confidence. Children were viewed as a blessing and family was sacrosanct (back in the past when the grass was greener)”

    The problem was there were many horrible marriages (my parents was one) and divorce was either illegal or firmly discouraged. It was bad for parents and the mental well being of kids. Most people simply don’t want to go back to that and they would be crazy to.

    Our modern system allows more flexibility, but where we need to do better is to promote that persistence, permanence and faithfulness are good values and divorce should not be the easy option to take.

    But Kids do just as well on the whole under the modern system if not better.

    Read a few books like The Moral Arc and Enlightement Now. Society has generally got better in multiple ways, but not in all ways.

    “Contrast today. Pretty much the entire West has such a crisis of confidence we can’t even keep out primitive tribes-people who have to be taught how to use flush toilets, light switches and even doorknobs. Lots don’t speak our languages and are effectively unemployable, but somehow their situation is now our responsibility for which we are supposed to feel guilty. ”

    Well others have made some good comments on this. In NZ have a skills based immigration quota system so people have reasonable skills and have to have good basic english. Its the way I would want it.

    “The technology we have today would make it a snap to repeat the Apollo moon landings. … “Instead, we have people blaming “institutional racism” and “implicit bias” for the failure of racial minorities to perform in school, and children are literally being beaten up for it on a daily basis.”

    I loathe racism, but I agree blaming it for educational failure can become excuse making. Some of the problem is parents who are anti education, but that straddles across all races including whites.

    “Yes, but how are they (modern kids) doing on Readin’, Ritin’ and ‘Rithmetic? In the USA, the public schools are so bad that children taught by their own parents radically outpace public school students academically. ”

    Firstly that has nothing much to do with family structure and is about the education system.

    I dont know about America. Public schools in other countries do really well. So you guys have to figure out where you are going wrong. Like I said Finland make sure their system attracts really well qualified people as teachers.

    “I’m an atheist myself, but even I can see that where Christianity has faded, its mind-share has been taken over by suicide-cults of “social justice” and “anti-racism”.

    Good thing we have some social justice and anti racism. The real problem is a void of agreed social values to replace christianity as such, and its ability to unify. But be positive – I think we are slowly getting there, and theres room for both traditional and modern values, but there’s a lot of mess at the moment.

    “In the USA, much of it originates with taxpayers who approve or deny proposals for new taxes to finance schools. People who know just how poorly the system performs are not going to give it more money until it corrects its course, which it shows no sign of doing. ”

    A classic catch 22.

    “Finland is literally not the rest of the world. Deal with it.”

    But the rest of the world could be more like Finland :)

  36. 586
    Killian says:

    anklebiter: The “rich” countries are rich at the top. Virtually all of the wealth created since 1970 has gone to the 1%. Real income for Americans rose a TOTAL of 4% over that same time despite productivity rising significantly.

    Women going to work is good if they wish. Same for men. But in no way does it indicate an improvement for the typical person because the extra income from a second earner has been absorbed by debt and inflation.

    Had more women gone to work AND incomes risen steadily AND minumum wage merely kept up with inflation, you have a 99% that was virtually all middle class.

    Again, you fail to “get” it. Your veiled misogyny (extreme feminists) should get you banned.

  37. 587
    Ray Ladbury says:

    While keeping in mind the need to guard against the ad hominem fallacy, there are times when a person’s beliefs on unrelated matters color our view of their scientific or technical credibility.

    It is fine that Roy Spencer and John Christy are Christians, but when that belief leads him to sign on with the Cornwall Alliance, then one has to wonder about both their brand of Christianity and their science.

    Likewise, I wonder why it is that whenever you find a strident defender of nukes, then 9 times out of 10, they turn out to be an utter nutjob on subjects such as gender, minorities, social mobility, education… I’m not even particularly anti-nukes (my main worries there have to do with human factors and nuclear waste), but there sure do seem to be a whole helluva lot of gung ho nuke promoters that seem to embrace the technology mainly because it provides them with an opportunity to bash hippies and greenies.

  38. 588
    zebra says:

    #587 Ray Ladbury,

    I made the point earlier…it might have been to you…that you are seeing all the markers of an (acute) Authoritarian personality/psychology. I realize that people in the physical sciences are often dismissive of psychology/social science, but this syndrome has been very well researched for quite a while now. There’s really no reason to look for some other explanation.

    As for “why nuclear?”, it isn’t really about the technology. He actually offers no suggestion as to how to achieve a transition, and rejects any approach that involves a diverse, competitive marketplace, even when it is stipulated that safety and waste are not a problem.

    Do a quick search on Authoritarian Personality, you will see it’s obvious that it is all of a piece.

  39. 589
    nigelj says:

    Killian @586 creates an entire forest of straw people and multiple misconceptions.

    “The “rich” countries are rich at the top. Virtually all of the wealth created since 1970 has gone to the 1%. Real income for Americans rose a TOTAL of 4% over that same time despite productivity rising significantly.”

    So what? Total strawman. I wasn’t even talking about anything related to inequality. It’s common knowledge there is massive wealth inequality. I’ve written formal submissions to political parties suggesting policies to counter this problem.

    “Women going to work is good if they wish. Same for men. But in no way does it indicate an improvement for the typical person because the extra income from a second earner has been absorbed by debt and inflation.”

    I disagree in part. Debt has nothing to do with the issue. Inflation has been low since the 1990s the very period we are talking about where both partners increasingly work. Inflation was higher in the 1970s when one parent worked. I will only accept that inflation is at most one minor contributing factor.

    The reasons both husbands and wives work these days are multifaceted. The evidence is obvious. We tend to have more material goods and larger houses these days. As AB pointed out more is spent on the military in some countries and more is spent on paper pushers that add questionable value, like parts of the finance industry, and lawyers ( a personal pet hate of mine). But parts of these industries do add value. You guys generalise way too much.

    “Had more women gone to work AND incomes risen steadily AND minimum wage merely kept up with inflation, you have a 99% that was virtually all middle class.”

    Probably true but completely beside the point.

    “Again, you fail to “get” it. “Your veiled misogyny (extreme feminists) should get you banned.”

    Hilarious.

  40. 590
    nigelj says:

    Ray Ladbury @587 agree entirely about Spencer, Christie and the pro nuclear lobby. My experiences have has been identical, and their socio political views are a bit nuts.

    But here we have EP who is pro nuclear and on the right on some issues at least, and who accepts climate change is a big problem and has some skills to deal with it. We need these guys on our side. Its counter productive to personally attack people like that (Zebra are you listening). Although I do make my disagreements clear.

  41. 591
    nigelj says:

    zebra @579 no Zebra. You are making a fool of yourself.

    You claim expertise but make it plain you have a hugely over simplified view of what capacitors do in power factor correction. Your quote from some textbook is only part of the story at best. It is not possible to explain power factor correction simply by saying capacitors store reverse magnetic field energy. There’s much more going on. Its very easy to google information that proves this beyond doubt, from the guys who sell these capacitors and other electronics experts.

    Now EP said something about “capacitors used for PFC don’t store energy per se”. I think he was just taking the industry line that their job is to provide reactive power, not that capacitors dont store energy. Or maybe he was wrong. You Zebra have been wrong about a few things, but never have I seem you admit it.

    Perhaps we have all contracted a bit of DK over the xmas break:) Anyone have a theory on why?

  42. 592
    nigelj says:

    EP @584 creates his own forest of straw men and exaggerations. I’m in the business of chopping these things down because they annoy me. If I erect them give me a blast.

    “The USA and Europe have been on a massive “renewables” kick since the 1970’s oil price shocks made “Energy Crisis” a household term. I remember when Jimmy Carter famously replaced all the White House thermostats and put solar panels on the roof. Here we are, 43 years after the peanut farmer took office, and we still do not have a single wind-turbine or PV panel factory that’s powered by wind and PV. We don’t have a single industrial-sized emissions-free grid that isn’t primarily powered by some combination of hydro and nuclear”

    Sigh. Massive renewables kick starting in the 1970’s? A few solar panels on roofs and experimental wind farms? I don’t see it.

    Renewables only started to gain a bit of traction after the climate problem emerged in the 1990s and even then it was mild because of all the political resistance and lobby group resistance. So its not the technological feasibility thats to blame, its politics.

    In contrast nuclear power started in America around 1960 and was hugely favoured, and so nuclear power has had a bigger head start.

    Although EP creates a good case for nuclear power. We need to be open minded and stop closing the damn things down. That’s nuts.

    The thing is to subsidise both renewables and nuclear power equally and let the best man win. And make sure new renewables have to come with some storage attached. A level playing field. Then the issue will sort itself out.

  43. 593
    Thomas says:

    #584
    “You could give an existence proof (and no Sweden isn’t it, as its mainstay is hydro which cannot be scaled or translated to other geography or climates). Unfortunately for you, as France added “renewables” it replaced 100% emissions-free nuclear with part-RE, part-fossil and emissions have been going UP. This is exactly what skeptics like me and Michael Shellenberger predicted; despite this, there is no change in policy nor even admission of error.

    The USA and Europe have been on a massive “renewables” kick since the 1970’s oil price shocks made “Energy Crisis” a household term. I remember when Jimmy Carter famously replaced all the White House thermostats and put solar panels on the roof. Here we are, 43 years after the peanut farmer took office, and we still do not have a single wind-turbine or PV panel factory that’s powered by wind and PV. We don’t have a single industrial-sized emissions-free grid that isn’t primarily powered by some combination of hydro and nuclear (there are a few islands running mostly on PV and batteries but you can’t afford to run factories there). We are promised “storage” but the best we’re offered is an 80% solution when we need a 200% solution (massive negative emissions) and we need it NOW.

    43 years is long enough to pronounce something a failure.

    Can’t see anything essentially wrong misguided or false about that humorous summary. Though going back to the 1970s is tad excessive. However to be frank, new Hydrogen fueled cars Tech was a “thing” in the 1970s and 1980s due to the oil shortage, higher prices and possibility of Peak Oil down the track. Hydrogen powered engines almost came a reality in QLD australia using cheap as chips Coal as primary energy source to produce it (before agw/cc became a “thing” of concern.)


    Albania: 100% RE, 100% hydro.
    Brazil: 80.4% RE, 65.8% hydro.
    Congo: 100% hydro.
    Costa Rica: 97.7% RE, 73.8% hydro.
    Ethiopia: 93.6% RE, 86.2% hydro.
    Georgia: 80.7% RE, 80.6% hydro.

    etc. ad nauseam.

    As I keep telling you, there are NO “renewable” success stories that aren’t dominated by hydro.

    I’ll add to that significant Nuclear energy share as well – the USA an example of that supporting renewable uptake in parts of the nation. And in a few instances, Iceland, there’s geothermal primary energy supply that also makes other renewable energy (wind) viable. As the decades roll on I suspect geothermal will grow where it’s possible.

    Other Hydro supported locations would include Washington state, Montana (I think), Norway. There’s also New Zealand too. A big reason why they never went Nuclear, they didn’t need to. Australia didn’t need nuclear option either because of sitting on the best quality, easy ‘open cut’ availability in isolated unpopulated regions, resulting in the cheapest Coal in the world.

    China’s made a big dint by expanding Hydro. The elephant in the room of course is Hydro’s limitations and problematic consequences politically with downstream countries eg Ethiopia v Egypt and what would happen to the Meekong and Indian Bangladeshi food bowls.

    And storage – lithium batteries are the current popular meme. Useful to a degree but long term I cannot see it as viable or sustainable (environmentally) nor a cost effective solution.

    Bill Gates and his foundation researched this issue for almost a decade behind the scenes. They concluded that GenIV safe nuclear reactors were the only rational, environmentally sound, economically viable, and socially equitable solution to ensure energy security being matched with renewable growth.

    Bill agreed with James Hansen, and with what I was saying here years ago now. Coincidence? Nah. It’s science and math in action – pure and simple.

    Bill Gates put his foundations money where his mouth was and instituted a long term deal with China’s Govt and companies to build their first demonstration GenIV Nuclear plant in China – it was approved for construction and the location secured – the potential was for creating a mass produced modular design system of manufacturing – a concept similar to China’s HTGR Pebble bed design – a few months later Trump won the Presidency – the deal collapsed – they (ie everyone) were Banned from proceeding and still are. One day, this will change. Bill may not be still here, but the Foundation and the Knowledge will remain.

    The other fake meme going around today is (imo/research) that 100% BEVs (Tesla especially) are the #1 sustainable solution to solving CO2/GHG emissions in the Transportation sector – short and long term. Best analogy I can use to explain why is that Tesla/BEVs are like Blockbuster Video – a great idea at the time that never lasted. Much better alternatives came along – Blockbuster went Bust!

    Anyway carry on with the arguing and bickering if you must. Is it any wonder no real agreements have yet been made on how to solve or address the global implications of AGW/CC? Beliefs rule the day everyday. Not science nor reason or sharing.

  44. 594
    nigelj says:

    I said #581 “I’m assuming that what the capacitors do is they convert the stored energy to this negative reactive power where current and voltage are out of phase in a certain direction.”

    In hindsight this isn’t worded right. The capacitor stores energy travelleing thru the circuit that includes the motor and capacitor and power supply. It uses its tendency to create leading negative reactive power to cancel out the positive reactive power characteristic that is imposed by the motor.

    This makes it consistent with the statement from the text zebra quoted that the capacitor is storing magnetic reversal energy.

    The capacitor is however not being used primarily as a storage device, like where it is used to power the flash in a camera.

  45. 595

    I had a ton of writing done, and instead of sleeping when I wanted to shut down, Windows rebooted and destroyed everything.  This is pass #2 on all that follows.

    nigelj wrote @558:

    If you can’t remember those days how can you really say they were better?

    Look at the results.  Rapid progress.  Stable families.  High personal achievement and getting better.  They didn’t have to do anything like re-norming the SAT because the performance of the student body had fallen.

    The so-called “Flynn effect” on IQ scores says we were getting smarter (until fairly recently), but studies of reaction speed since the 19th century show that we’ve been getting mentally slower all the while.  Reaction speed is positively correlated with intelligence.  Whatever things were like then, they literally made better humans than our society today.

    And again Finland funds teachers well and teachers perform well, and so do students, and so does their high income society. There’s no robust evidence that America should be different.

    To make this work in the USA, you’d have to completely clean house and make everyone in the system re-apply for their jobs.  There is something of the sort in progress with “charter schools” but they tend to be funded less than open-enrollment public schools.  Some of them have higher performance because of higher standards, and good teachers prefer to work where the discipline problems are weeded out.  (Imagine your working conditions being so bad, you’re willing to take a pay CUT to get rid of the abuse you get from your current clientele.  That’s literally the situation some teachers face in today’s USA.)

  46. 596

    Kevin McKinney wrote @559:

    The logical corollary of that is that the “edublogger community”, whatever that is, must exist in a separate ‘ideological bubble,’

    Projection.  Just because your sources filter out things they don’t want you to know doesn’t mean theirs do.  Theirs are obviously less-censored and I know from reading them that they tend to be more skeptical than you, especially since many of them see the truth up close and personal at work every day.

    or else is swimming in some sea of everythingness. Omm…

    The human mind can barely drink from that firehose; taking it all in just isn’t possible.

    Seven decades… that would take us back to 1950, which was 15-20 years before “2nd wave” feminism got going.

    But a decade after “Rosie the Riveter”.

    While you, of course, are completely omniscient about what your ‘enemy’ intends?

    You don’t have to be omniscient to read the enemy’s agenda in their own words.  You have to be somewhat more sophisticated to understand what’s going on in the feminist program to “deconstruct” the family, mostly in the binding and torture of the hapless word “justice”.

    It’s again pure fantasy to think that, had teachers only been ‘reasonable’ and worked against their own best interest

    Public school teachers are PUBLIC EMPLOYEES.  They are public servants by definition.  If they pursue their own interests they have a conflict of interest.  Do you think any of them are going to move to replace themselves with more-qualified personnel in the interest of the students?

    For there to be any legitimacy of public-school teachers pursuing their own interests, there must be an equal power of the public to avoid and disemploy teachers who fail to serve the public interest.

    where did you get the idea that teachers choose curricula? That’s done by politicians

    So teachers are NOT professionals?  They do not select their own methods and working conditions?  Nice of you to admit it.

    Your challenge was “prove it.” I’m not sure how I’m supposed to “prove” a prediction

    One existence proof is all it would take, and the math to show that you can generalize to most or all of the world.

    I’ve previously pointed out that your precious Sweden is banking on a renewable future.

    Now who just said something about predictions being unprovable?

    It is an incontrovertible fact that Sweden first decarbonized its electric grid using nuclear plus its hydro resources.  It remains to be seen if Sweden’s hydro reservoirs are up to the task of buffering large amounts of unreliable wind power, or if fallback to fossil will be required.  Given the stakes that is a very dangerous, if not irresponsible, bet.

    I’ve pointed out that while Ontario–my natal province–does indeed rely heavily on its nuclear and hydropower ‘backbone’, it wasn’t able actually shut down the coal fleet until it added natgas (6%) and wind (8%).

    The big thing was the Bruce Point refurbishment, with units 1 and 2 coming back on-line in 2012.  Nanticoke shut down in 2013 and Thunder Bay in 2014.  The gas is mostly there to “balance” (compensate for the unreliability of) the wind and very expensive PV.

    I could now point out that there now about 15 nations–most but not all small economically–that produce 80% or more of their electricity from renewable energy.

    Albania:  100% hydro.
    Brazil:  80.4% RE, 65.8% hydro, 8.8% biomass, just 5.8% wind and a mere 0.024% solar.
    Costa Rica:  97.7% RE, 73.8% hydro.
    Ethiopia:  93.6% RE, 86.2% hydro.
    Georgia:  80.7% RE, 80.6% hydro.
    Iceland:  100% hydro.
    Kenya:  90.7% RE, 38.9% hydro, 48.8% geothermal.

    Etc. ad nauseam.

    YOUR OWN SOURCE confirms my claim that “renewables” must be underpinned by something sitting on a large stockpile of energy.  In EVERY case I got to, those stockpiles are impounded water (hydro) and precisely one case of hot rock (geothermal).  In NO case was the primary energy supply an unreliable, un-buffered flow of wind or solar energy… precisely what the “Green New Deal” demands that we somehow survive on.

    When you cite a source in opposition to me, and it confirms everything I’ve been saying, you are proving that you are either grossly dishonest or grossly incompetent.  Which is it?

    I’ve definitely pointed out what seems to be an enormous economic advantage held by RE.

    That advantage comes from not having to provide reliable (“firm”) output (transferring the cost of reliability to other generators), and their fossil-fired backup being able to use the atmosphere as an open sewer at no cost.  In other words, it’s two different kinds of bookkeeping fraud.

    Modern RE is cheap, effective and highly modular

    Anything can be “cheap” if you don’t allocate its externalized costs to it.  Somebody still pays, though.

  47. 597

    Al Bundy writes @563:

    “Reality has a liberal bias” is based in truth.

    Liberals are about a standard deviation more intelligent than conservatives.

    If liberals were truly intelligent, they would not escalate their altruism to pathological levels:

    It is difficult to define a whole school of political ideology precisely, but one may reasonably define liberalism (as opposed to conservatism) in the contemporary United States as the genuine concern for the welfare of genetically unrelated others and the willingness to contribute larger proportions of private resources for the welfare of such others. In the modern political and economic context, this willingness usually translates into paying higher proportions of individual incomes in taxes toward the government and its social welfare programs. Liberals usually support such social welfare programs and higher taxes to finance them, and conservatives usually oppose them.

    Defined as such, liberalism is evolutionarily novel. Humans (like other species) are evolutionarily designed to be altruistic toward their genetic kin, their friends and allies, and members of their deme (a group of intermarrying individuals) or ethnic group. They are not designed to be altruistic toward an indefinite number of complete strangers whom they are not likely ever to meet or interact with. This is largely because our ancestors lived in a small band of 50-150 genetically related individuals, and large cities and nations with thousands and millions of people are themselves evolutionarily novel.

    The so-called “intelligence” of liberals comes from the induction of the intelligent to universities, followed by brainwashing them in progressive dogma as the price of obtaining the credentials they are going deep into debt to obtain.  If you asked most of these “intelligent liberals” to justify the dogma they now back, they’d melt down just like that vape shop clerk; the cognitive dissonance breaks their brains.

    LOL! Feminism is the reason that teachers with masters degrees need second jobs to keep up with a Man with a trade school Diploma?

    Most teachers are public employees paid from taxes; the man with a trade-school diploma and a business is an entrepreneur whose income depends on satisfied customers.  Who has a greater moral right to their money?

    Who, ultimately, made smarter use of their time on this planet?  Does anything stop women from going to trade school?  If women look down on trade schools while pursuing counterproductive masters degrees, does that not confirm that women pursue status to destructive levels?

    @564:

    If efficiency were the only consideration, would you build a three-phase motor with or without capacitors in its control circuits?

    You mean “power circuits”, and definitely “with”.  Capacitors do the job reliably and with low losses.  The only exception is if I had a synchronous motor that had an excited rotor, not something like a reluctance motor.  In that case no capacitors are necessary, as the motor itself can function as a “synchronous condenser”.  If it’s big enough it can even offset the inductive power demands of the rest of a plant.

  48. 598
    Al Bundy says:

    EP: The reality is that nuclear fuel is changed on a schedule during low-demand parts of the year (spring and fall), whether it is exhausted or not.

    AB: Schedules are developed with future operations in mind. If refueling is currently scheduled once every X “opportunities” and the nuke’s burn rate drops I’m thinking the engineers would be intelligent enough to change the refueling schedule to once every Y opportunities.

    And ramping up and down is what flywheels and batteries do. That nukes are slow rampers is not some impossible hurdle.

    Your arguments rarely give voice to any other than a Pure White view. Diversity is all about diverse thought. You dive deeply…

    …into wells.

  49. 599
    David B. Benson says:

    Ray Ladbury @587 — Your final paragraph is unsubstantiated. Engineer-Poet is exceptional.

    I advocate an appropriately large fraction of nuclear power plants, witnessing the success in France.

  50. 600

    E-P 584: there are NO “renewable” success stories that aren’t dominated by hydro.

    BPL: Denmark, Portugal, Iceland, Spain.