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Forced Responses: July 2021

Filed under: — group @ 2 July 2021

A new bi-monthly open thread for climate solutions discussions. Climate science threads go here.

434 Responses to “Forced Responses: July 2021”

  1. 251
    Reality Check says:

    Govt Policy examples to encourage Regenerative Agriculture (and CO2 sequestration)

    An example I found is from Canada : feel free to offer up better examples.

    Agricultural Climate Solutions Program: Step 1: What this program offers
    – Applicants may apply for an Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) grant of up to $100,000
    – Step 2. Who is eligible?
    The following agriculture sector organization types are eligible to apply for Step 1 and Step 2 of this program:
    not-for-profit organizations, including producer organizations
    Indigenous groups

    https://agriculture.canada.ca/en/agricultural-programs-and-services/agricultural-climate-solutions-program-step-1-what-program-offers
    Find other CA programs here https://agpal.ca/#/home

    CO2 sequestration in Australia?
    Under the scheme, landowners and farmers who adopt approved Emission Reduction Fund methods can earn Australian Carbon Credit Units which can be sold to provide alternative or additional income streams, while benefitting the environment.
    https://www.agriculture.gov.au/ag-farm-food/climatechange/cfi
    example case studies http://www.cleanenergyregulator.gov.au/ERF/Forms-and-resources/case-studies

    The State Government’s $15 million Carbon Farming and Land Restoration Program aims to realise agriculture’s potential to sequester carbon in the landscape and contribute to the growth of the Western Australian carbon farming market. [ just one farm could cost over $15 million to buy.]
    https://www.agric.wa.gov.au/carbon-farming/western-australian-carbon-farming-and-land-restoration-program

    another state case studies
    https://www.qld.gov.au/environment/climate/climate-change/land-restoration-fund/carbon-farming/case-studies

    Limited and a drop in the bucket compared to Industrial Ag support and facilitation. To me this is the reality, this is the norm everywhere.

    And so at this pace, a lack of Govt Policy and support for it, I again assert, conclude, it will likely take decades before Regenerative Agriculture as the accepted mainstream system could possibly have any global impact at all.

    Now I could be wrong. Things can change. It’s only my opinion based on what I know and what I do not know. It’s OK if people disagree. Have different ideas or expectations of time frames when RegenAg is the norm and not the exception.

    I’m thinking, the exceptional cases will prove the rule of being barely incremental change for some time. That there is nothing at Scale, Systemic and Permanent being done or offered promoted by Govts in the countries listed. Without massive Govt Policy support rapid (and Radical) change will be impossible.

    It’s still every man for himself …. iow growth in Regenerative Ag and carbon sequestration is only being driven at a grass roots level. Only a few will obtain some minor Govt funding.

  2. 252
    Reality Check says:

    @248, yes, psychology is problematic, carbon taxes ‘market friendly’ and yet still problematic. Joe Biden’s plan is probably better than Trump’s or no plan. 30GW doesn’t seem like much to build over a decade. Only 3GW per year, but better than nothing (maybe.) Makes me wonder why Obama never did it 12 years ago.

    For context and scale — In 2018 the total installed electricity generation summer capacity:[12] in the United States was 1,084.37 gigawatts (GW), up 11.91 GW from 2017. The main energy sources for electricity generation include

    Thermal/Fossil: 747.78 GW, up 11.45 GW from 2017
    Nuclear: 99.4 GW, flat from 2017
    Hydropower: 79.87 GW, up 0.1 GW from 2017
    Wind: 94.4 GW, up 6.8 GW from 2017
    Solar: 31.89 GW, up 4.91 GW from 2017
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electricity_sector_of_the_United_States#Electricity_generation

  3. 253
    Killian says:

    245 mike says:
    20 Jul 2021 at 11:39 AM

    At K: regarding chem ag vs. regen ag, you and I are in agreement… You, me, Scott and few others here have a pretty decent grasp on that big picture, so there is no particular reason to attack me on my discussion regarding that stuff, but if you can’t help yourself, ok. I prefer a generally civil discussion, but that’s not for everyone.

    I scrolled all the way back to 150 and found exactly nothing to merit *your* “attack” above. I have no idea what you are upset about.

  4. 254

    E-P 226: The record of the last several centuries shows that humans will NEVER opt for less consumption if they can avoid it.

    BPL: And the lesson of E-P’s post is that he thinks “the record of the last several centuries” is identical what “humans” will do. Perhaps he should consider the middle ages, when “luxury” and “envy” were considered vices and saints were admired for what they could do without.

  5. 255

    E-P 228: “renewables” are unfit to provide the always-on power required to sustain essentials like water, sewage and medical systems.

    BPL: No matter how many times you say this, it still won’t be true.

  6. 256

    @244:

    If the power is all dispatchable anyway, then what is the point of managing the load?

    To match load to generation and get the maximum benefit of the capital assets.  It makes no sense whatsoever to run something like a nuclear plant at anything other than full power, outside of startups and shutdowns.  We’ve got uses for carbon-free energy.

    As an example, consider gasification.  The Frank Shu “torrefaction” (really, pyrolysis) scheme produces gas (mostly steam) and char.  You could fairly easily use surplus electric power to heat the char and convert it to syngas using the steam; you could steam-crack the methane in the pyrolysis gas to CO and H2 at the same time.  This only requires temperatures of about 1000°C, well within the capabilities of materials like SiC, tungsten and tungsten carbide.  The non-gaseous products would be ash and remnant salt; wash the salt out for re-use and you’re left with sterile, stable ash.  How does that sound as a way to convert e.g. garbage to renewable fuel?

    All you need to run such a system is electric power.  Why not build out nuclear generation to cover at least base load and mid-load, then use the extra overnight power for demand-side managed loads like EV charging, converting MSW to clean fuel, etc?  You’d get another huge climate benefit from the MSW processing because you’d eliminate the methane emissions from landfills.

    A scheme like this might also be able to use a considerable amount of unreliable power, so long as base load power was able to keep the capital systems from being degraded by thermal cycling.

  7. 257
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Reality Check, regarding the hashtag that science is necessary but not sufficient, I disagree. But the reason I disagree is that I define “the science” more broadly.

    Basically, humans are pretty dumb. We make ourselves dumb by deceiving ourselves–by distorting what is in front of us to make it more pleasing to our psyche’s and to our peer group.

    Science is the corrective lens that restores that flawed vision. We can apply that lens to any problem in the physical–or, indeed, the psychological world–that confronts us. What is needed is the willingness to eschew comfort and confront reality as it is, as science–the dispassionate analysis of all the available data–reveals it.

    If we cannot do that… Well, an animal that blinds itself is probably destined for extinction.

  8. 258
    michael Sweet says:

    AP at 226 demonstrates that he is as ignorant about human behaviour as he is about power sources.

    Who is willing to “give up” energy resources? GDP is a proxy for energy use. I am an American who lived 3 years in Australia. The GDP per capita in Australia is lower than it is in the USA, their lives use less energy. People do not work as many hours in Australia as in the USA. They get much more vacation. The average car is smaller, but everyone has a car. They have more time to spend with family and friends. The average house is smaller but everyone has a house. Many people I know in the USA have a large house with several rooms dedicated to storing unless junk they never use. They would be happier using less energy in a smaller house and throwing away the useless junk. Most of Europe has made a similar decision to “give up” high energy use, compared to the USA, and have more time to spend on other things.

    Costa Rica consistently ranks as one of the happiest countries in the world. When I Goggled it I got: “Researchers have identified Costa Rica’s primary sources of happiness as renewable resources—strong social bonds, a clean environment, and investment in education.” Nothing about high energy use to promote happiness.

    How did I get to live in Australia you ask? I took 7 years off working (I work a normal job and did not inherit money) to sail around the South Pacific with my three children (one born on a remote island in Fiji 4 weeks early). We had little money, used little fossil fuel and it was the happiest time of my life. We ended up in Australia where we worked and lived for three years before we had to move back to the USA. I retired 7 years before I am eligible for Social Security so that I could have more time off with my family and friends. I don’t use much energy but I get to play my guitar more and see more friends. I want to get an electric car.

    I met people in the villages in the South Pacific who had worked in the USA and returned to the village to spend more time with family and old friends. Your suggestion that people are unwilling to sacrifice money for other things in life reflects only on your own self centered life. Many countries have decided to use less resources and spend more time on other important things in life. The USA is an example of the extreme pursuit of things (and subsequent use of energy) but is not the happiest country because they have sacrificed other important things.

    Compared to the USA, most countries have decided that other things like time with family, happiness enriching vacations and less stress are worth giving up wasteful use of power. In the USA many people live a simpler lifestyle but the media focuses on the rich and wasteful. Engineer Poet just is blind to the people who live more simply.

  9. 259
    nigelj says:

    Reality check @250 says “And reconsider that I was not addressing the physicality of a farm switching over (to regenerative agriculture) , in practical terms, but the big global picture going forward – given historical precedents of building systemic change to address global warming.”

    Yes. Physically switching over from industrial agriculture to regenerative agriculture or organic agriculture is potentially easy and quick. It doesnt require buying masses of new equipment. All it needs is some study over a period of a few months perhaps. ‘Getting’ people to switch over is another matter entirely. Regenerative ideas have been around for a while and most westernised farmers must have heard of them but clearly haven’t switched over yet , so getting people to switch over is obviously not going to be easy. Its human psychology again.

    From what I’ve read the reluctance of farmers to change is also partly a fear that no till farming would reduce yields and profits. The scientific literature says no till farming reduces yields but not hugely and not that significantly. It also says that reduced till farming actually INCREASES yields modestly. Unfortunately I can’t find this paper on increasing yields.

    Basically farmers are also inherently conservative and slow to adopt new ideas. Understandably enough given the nature of their industry and the serious problems if a new idea doesn’t work. It all suggests regenerative farming will eventually catch on, and reach a tipping point, but it may be a slow process. People will probably wait to see what adventurous farmers do and how it goes in practice over some years before committing. Governments can help but they don’t have unlimited cash. So regenerative agriculture is useful but is not going to be a panacea.

  10. 260
    mike says:

    at K: sorry, I felt a little attacked by 240, but it’s not a big deal. Maybe I just didn’t understand what that post was about? I still think more civility, less name-calling would be welcome. Are you willing to join with me in being less reactive in general? I hope your answer to that is yes.

    We have a lot of work to do persuading others that trading standard of living for quality of life is worth some deep consideration. We have a lot of work to do helping folks consider the big picture benefits of things like regen ag over chem ag.

    So, sorry if you felt attacked.

    Cheers

    Mike

  11. 261
    Reality Check says:

    @257 RL yes, that’s reasonable. I understand.

    @247 Killian et al on RenAg and the many other excellent solutions to mitigate and sequestration options:

    Back @170 I was saying:
    My difficulty is this aspect “actions to mitigate the danger” @137 – actions that people, communities, interest groups, and nations can actually take which mitigates the danger. What I see is an overwhelming powerlessness coupled with a lack of ability to implement a practical “efficacy.” Because peoples capacity is limited. There are not many examples of repeatable actions to mitigate out in the town square.
    I think the options for action are incredibly limited to the majority of people. Voting hasn’t improved things much the last 30 years. Good news stories of mitigation examples are rare.” [end quote]

    mike @245 says it differently, more clearly perhaps, but it’s essentially the same core issue observation as I was trying to convey:

    quoting @245
    “… I don’t think that we are unable to enact appropriate public policy because the scientists have been unclear about the issues or because climate activists have been scare-mongering, I think we can’t get appropriate public policy because powerful moneyed interests control public policy and they are unwilling to take a haircut on their awful assets. These folks spend a lot of money persuading elected officials to toe their line on legislation and they spend a lot of money on public disinformation campaigns and fanning the flames of the culture wars so the electorate does not respond in its best interest at election time.”

    Those moneyed interests are what drives Industrial Agriculture world wide. It doesn’t matter how good RegenAg is or how many activists speak up for it while the status quo remains. The same goes for all the decisions being made via COPs, pseudo goals of net zero by 2050, and keeping temps below 1.5C.

    It’s all PR and political spin (to me.) As extreme weather events keep getting worse this decade maybe power balance might change in the global systems. The problem then being, will it be too late anyway? I think it is already.

    But if it is, I still think the practitioners of RegenAg etc will still be making a positive contribution regionally here and there. While ‘globally’ Rome burns as economic/political systems continue to collapse.

    Yes, I think the impacts and speed of climate change have been severely understated. I could be wrong.

  12. 262
    prl says:

    michael Sweet @258:

    The GDP per capita in Australia is lower than it is in the USA, their lives use less energy.

    While that’s true (5.6 vs 7.2 TJ/yr), Australia produces slightly more CO2 per capita than the USA (16.8 vs 16.1 tonnes/yr).

    Possibly partly because there’s no nuclear electricity generation, and little hydro, other than in Tasmania.

  13. 263
    nigelj says:

    The global trend is clearly largely towards high levels of consumption of things like housing, automobiles, household appliances, furniture and clothing. Just look at global gdp trends and retail buying. This is partly to do with quality of life, but also to do with basic survival urges to accumulate things like a squirril hoarding nuts for winter, and STATUS SIGNALLING. Humans are largely very status conscious like other animals. Big literature on status seeking for example:

    https://www.jstor.org/stable/40469967

    It does vary with hunter gatherers having few posessions but this might relate to their sources of food and mobile lifestyles. So ideas like deliberate de-industrialisation are nice theories but seem to go against many deep seated human aspirations. I’m not defending profilgate habits. While I’m definitely not into the minimalist hippie living style, my choice has been to own a modest size house and car.

  14. 264

    Michael Sweet @258 shows that he’s got the same issues:

    AP at 226 demonstrates that he is as ignorant about human behaviour as he is about power source

    First, you mis-attributed my comment and failed to link it.  Have the respect for me that I have for you.

    Second, you failed to recognize that YOU ARE THE SAME AS ME.  YOU are willing to give up consumption for the sake of the planet; the record proves that the rest of humanity is NOT.  WE, YOU and I, are different.  We adopted low-energy lifestyles despite no personal need to do so.  Show me that even Costa Rica has sacrificed hydro to be more “eco”; I doubt you can.

  15. 265
    Piotr says:

    E-P (228): “renewables” are unfit to provide the always-on power required to sustain essentials like water, sewage and medical systems.

    See Jacobsen et al. 2019 . In it, the very reason for the “unfitness” of the renewables, their intermittency – can be met with a mere 9% overbuild, which drops to only 2%, if the system is integrated into 24 regional grids instead of 143 national ones.

    Let’s have a look at nukes in the same regard. In the US (and majority of the world) the peak in demand is during day in summer – i.e. when the solar are at their best, while the nukes are at their … worst:
    – thermodynamic efficiency decreases with decreasing temp. difference between the steam and the coolant;
    – reactors may need to be shut down if the water used for cooling during a heat wave (max. demand for electricity!) becomes too scarce and/or too warm (the workarounds are more expensive, less efficient, and pose safety risks for larger reactors)

    In general, the mismatch between peak demand and supply can be addressed in 2 ways:
    – reducing it via storage and matching within grid
    – overbuild (you build more power than you would need except for the peak demand)

    Renewables are well suited to much cheaper former, nukes are not:

    a) Storage, physical and “virtual”: e.g. accumulating water in hydro when overall supply > demand, or charging EVs and other high-energy uses during time of lower demand and/or higher supply. This works well over the scale of hours or several days (i.e. intermittency of solar and wind), doesn’t work over the seasonal scales (nukes). Here is why:
    say, I have 1 GWhr storage – if I use it everyday to match with lows in solar daily generation – over a year I supplied 365*1 GWhr= 365 GWhr of stored electricity. Now if I used the same storage to keep the nuke surplus energy from winter to summer, for the same investment in the storage, I got only … 1GHhr per year. So in a nuke-only system – storage is obviously NOT a viable solution.

    b) Matching within the grid
    – wind: if wind are weak in Texas, transfer surplus from other place where at the same time is windy;
    – solar: the peak demand in the afternoon in New York may be helped with the surplus solar from California (noon there – solar gen. at its max., while their own max. demand may be a few hrs off).
    Does not work with the nukes – all nukes are less effective in summer than in winter, so all nukes have their surpluses in winter, and all of them have their deficits in summer – nothing to transfer.

    And things will only get WORSE IN THE FUTURE – larger and more intense heat waves will further increase the peak energy demand in summer, while at the same time the higher temps. will pushing down even further the efficiency of nukes producing it. And the largest the mismatches, the more damage they do – you are forced to start the rolling blackouts cutting the power to the air condition and freezers in homes and businesses, at the very time when the functioning A.C. may be the matter of life and death (see the recent heat wave in B.C.).

    Not fit for storage and grid matching as renewables are, the nukes would have to rely almost exclusively on the overbuild, which therefore would have to be massive.

    And it won’t be as simple or as cheap, as suggested by our famous “Engineer”
    who was selling nukes by equating the complexity of building of a 770MW, 10-reactor, nuclear power plant with building … one Liberty ship (i.e. “essentially a welded barge with an obsolescent triple expansion steam engine” jgnfld, May 405:), at the cost of $37 mln (2021 $), churned up at the rate of 3 per day…

    As jgnfld (405) put it: “A poet you perhaps are. An engineer you are NOT.

  16. 266
    David B Benson says:

    On the suitable thread at
    BNC Discussion Forum
    I posted the link to the source of the
    $30 trillion per year, worldwide,
    until 2050, just to keep the global warming to 2 degrees Celsius .
    That’s just net-zero.
    Doesn’t look good.

  17. 267
    David B Benson says:

    What proportion of the excess carbon dioxide emissions are due to activities of the USA, public and private? This to include activities in other countries with resultant sold to the USA?

    My guess is about half so in fairness, entities in the USA need to spend an aggregate of $15 trillion per year, 15 times the defense budget. Seems unlikely.

  18. 268
    David B Benson says:

    Piotr @265 —- Don’t believe Jacobson, who assumes transmission is a solvable problem. For example, consider the fated of Tres Amigos in southeast New Mexico.
    Not even pumped hydro is available in the flat lands. For example, explaIn how ERCOT Texas is to manage without natural gas. Go to it.

  19. 269
    David B Benson says:

    https://bravenewclimate.proboards.com/post/7968
    Provides the link to the article regarding the stupendous sums required to tame global warming.

  20. 270
    nigelj says:

    TOR @264 is basically right: Clearly the real world data shows most people are reluctant to reduce their consumption habits and people who choose to consume less are in a small minority. However I wonder if that would change. The climate change problem is probably big enough to be a motivating factor for everyone to reduce consumption, but for me the question is how much is plausible? How much will people be prepared to change their ingrained habits and immediate wants / needs for the sake of the planet?

    I suspect habits are hard to change and it will be a limited and slow process at best. It certainly looks like levels of climate change so far have not been sufficient motivators. It will probably take quite starkly and dramatically visible climate change. It suggests we cant count on big energy reductions short or even medium term and still need to build a new energy grid at reasonable scale.

    However Germany is instructive. They have made their energy systems more energy efficient and also reduced their consumption of energy, all by a system of rules, incentives and taxes. Interestingly they seem to have defeated Jeavons Paradox by doing this. However reductions in consumption have perhaps been modest: Refer:

    https://www.cleanenergywire.org/factsheets/germanys-greenhouse-gas-emissions-and-climate-targets

    “Germany has made notably less progress on its targets to reduce energy demand than on its renewables targets. … The country aimed to reduce primary energy consumption by 20 percent by 2020 compared to 2008 levels. However, even with the slump caused by the coronavirus pandemic, consumption was only reduced by 18 percent…..”

    And it appears they only reduced their energy consumption because increased efficiency of their systems meant this didn’t hurt (That’s the impression I get – I may be wrong). Essentially they are choosing not to “increase” their consumption. Of course this is all still useful and it does show other countries whats possible while maintaining a decent lifestyle.

  21. 271
    nigelj says:

    DBB @266, you expect me to hunt down your website and hunt through articles to find some link when you could have posted it HERE? I wont be bothering. (insert appropriate expletive ).

  22. 272
    Piotr says:

    David B Benson (267) “What proportion of the excess carbon dioxide emissions are due to activities of the USA, public and private? […] My guess is about half

    A quick search on Google suggests: 25% ourworldindata.org

    DBB: “ This to include activities in other countries, with the resultant sold to the USA??”

    Won’t make much difference (couple % at most) for the following reasons:
    1. need to subtract CO2 footprint of the goods exported from the US
    2. the globalization associated with large outsourcing of the emissions is
    only a few decades old
    3. it can’t be that large, since China despite being the largest (absolute) emitter on behalf of the others (to whom it exports its goods): is responsible only for 12.7%.

  23. 273
    Piotr says:

    prl(262) Australia produces slightly more CO2 per capita than the USA (16.8 vs 16.1 tonnes/yr). Possibly partly because there’s no nuclear and little hydro.

    having 75% of their electricity from coal instead 19% may have something to do with it.

  24. 274

    @265:

    See Jacobsen et al. 2019 . In it, the very reason for the “unfitness” of the renewables, their intermittency – can be met with a mere 9% overbuild, which drops to only 2%, if the system is integrated into 24 regional grids instead of 143 national ones.

    I don’t trust anything Jacobson says after his reaction to being debunked by Clack et al.  Even if he’s correct, his scheme would require a massive investment in transmission that is a net consumer of energy, both in its construction and operation.  It would have huge political opposition too.  That makes it utterly ridiculous as a serious proposal for decarbonizing the US grid.  Further, it would do NOTHING to decarbonize the rest of our energy consumption.  Besides, where does he think he’s going to GET the 28.6 million workers he claims would be required?  That’s roughly 1/6 of the total US workforce.

    Let’s have a look at nukes in the same regard. In the US (and majority of the world) the peak in demand is during day in summer – i.e. when the solar are at their best, while the nukes are at their … worst

    And so are geothermal, wind (which suffers from both low air density and general low wind speeds in summer high-pressure heat waves), most PV (output decreases with temperature) and all fuel-burning generation.  So what’s your point?

    In general, the mismatch between peak demand and supply can be addressed in 2 ways:
    – reducing it via storage and matching within grid
    – overbuild (you build more power than you would need except for the peak demand)

    Haven’t you read a word I’ve written?  We’ve got uses for HUNDREDS of GW (average, not peak) of interruptible electric power to decarbonize parts of our economy which aren’t currently electrified.  “Over”-building is definitely the thing to do, because “over” doesn’t happen until ALL energy demand has been satisfied, not just direct electric consumption.  But there’s an irreducible minimum which has to be satisfied, and sources like wind which can go on 2-week vacations at whim simply cannot do it.  They are unfit for purpose; they can provide energy, but not on demand.  And “on demand” is exactly what is required.

    over the seasonal scales (nukes). Here is why:
    say, I have 1 GWhr storage – if I use it everyday to match with lows in solar daily generation – over a year I supplied 365*1 GWhr= 365 GWhr of stored electricity. Now if I used the same storage to keep the nuke surplus energy from winter to summer, for the same investment in the storage, I got only … 1GHhr per year.

    That is EXACTLY the problem with reliance on PV; your late-spring/early-summer generation peak can’t be economically carried over from the weekend to the week, let alone to the winter.  It doesn’t matter how cheap the energy is; it could be free, but you still couldn’t afford to store it against the times of greatest need.

    The great part about nuclear energy is that it’s available 24/7/365.  Something like Ed Pheill’s Elysium reactor wouldn’t ever have to shut down save for reactor vessel replacements (about every 40 years).  This allows building out to meet peak demand and diverting the immediately-unused gigawatts to things like CO2 capture and upgrading various forms of carbon to useful fuels.  That sort of storable energy supply is exactly the thing that MZJ’s fake proposals don’t have.  For that matter, the second-generation Elysium proposals run at temperatures high enough to drive carbon gasification and methane reforming with direct nuclear heat.  Converting heat straight to chemical energy is the holy grail of energy, no?  You cannot do this with solar, even concentrating solar.  You CAN do this with nuclear.

    So in a nuke-only system – storage is obviously NOT a viable solution.

    HA!  Natrium Power aims to conquer the daily demand cycle with molten-salt heat storage at a fraction of the cost of batteries.  This obviously doesn’t deal with seasonal cycles, but neither can anything deal with such cycles of wind or solar.  My own scheme deals with those cycles by diverting excess energy to the alternate form of chemical energy, specifically liquid fuels.  THOSE can be stored for months and years.  In the case of natural gas, we already do that.

    And things will only get WORSE IN THE FUTURE – larger and more intense heat waves will further increase the peak energy demand in summer, while at the same time the higher temps. will pushing down even further the efficiency of nukes producing it.

    Yeah, so?  A system designed around meeting peak demand while diverting excess energy to interruptible loads will handle such situations with ease.  This goes double if it’s designed to be carbon-negative, such as converting biomass to fuels which are then used in Allam-cycle plants which dump their captured CO2 into geological formations where it is mineralized.  That not only deals with the problem, it directly ameliorates the cause.

    Not fit for storage and grid matching as renewables are, the nukes would have to rely almost exclusively on the overbuild, which therefore would have to be massive.

    As I have shown before, we need a massive “overbuild” (of direct electric demand) in order to deal with carbon emissions from non-electric energy requirements.  For this, nuclear is perfect.

  25. 275
    prl says:

    Piotr @273

    having 75% of their [Australia’s] electricity from coal instead 19% may have something to do with it.

    I’m not sure where that figure is from.

    Fossil fuels contributed 79 per cent of total electricity generation [in Australia] in 2019, including coal (56 per cent), gas (21 per cent) and oil (2 per cent).

    Renewables contributed 21 per cent of total electricity generation in 2019, specifically hydro (5 per cent), wind (7 per cent), and solar (7 per cent).

    https://www.energy.gov.au/data/australian-electricity-generation-fuel-mix

    That’s far from good enough, but not quite as bad as you paint it.

    Coal use (and especially brown coal use) for electricity generation in Australia is falling.

    The figure for fossil fuel generation in the US looks less good if you look at both coal (19%) and natural gas (40%) (2020, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electricity_sector_of_the_United_States).

    From the figures in that article, the US is about the same as Australia on renewables: (wind 8%, hydro 7%, solar 2%, total 18% from the unrounded percentages).

    A standout difference between the two is in nuclear: 0% Australia, and 19% USA, and it’s about the difference between the total fossil fuel percentages.

  26. 276
    Reality Check says:

    @259 please @261 for further clarification of my pov fwiw.

    re “People will probably wait to see what adventurous farmers do and how it goes in practice over some years before committing. Governments can help but they don’t have unlimited cash. So regenerative agriculture is useful but is not going to be a panacea.”

    And what if it is a panacea for agriculture, the environment and drawing down emissions long term?

    Whilst I don’t expect much progress uptake, for reasons given, I am definitely not saying that is a good thing, nor ethical or the right approach to be taking. Nor should it be seen as Acceptable. I can empathize with those RegenAg promoters who are frustrated by the all the entrenched barriers placed in the way.

    And Govts have a lot more power than simply handing out grants. Intercontinental railroads, highways, the internet, and schools and universities didn’t just appear out of nowhere. They all needed pro-active long term generational support and new laws to guide regulation and facilitating finance and Tax breaks to various degrees by Governments spending the combined Tax Revenues for the good of all.

    Those that nations that didn’t did not are still impoverished and backward (generally speaking) – is Afghanistan a fair example of what happens when education and internet infrastructure is ignored. Once upon a time it was an advanced society btw.

    eg the plans for windfarms off new york now can’t happen without US Govt approvals and facilitation. North sea oil and gas would still in the under sea if not for the active involvement of the UK Govt. This the Norm, not the exception to the rule of systemic changes in the world.

    Why should Regenerative Agriculture be seen as any different to Govts supporting the establishment of coal fired power stations, and nuclear reactors, and the essential infrastructure to send electricity throughout the land the last century and a bit?

    This is exactly what the problems is. The rich and powerful block such support, they manipulate the political processes and the financial support needed. Surely this is abundantly obvious now and documented at every step of the unfolding story of new global warming and climate change knowledge and action?

    Im not buying it has to always be this way, even though I say, well, things do not look good from here …. ‘being realistic and calling it as it is, is imo, a prerequisite to facing up to what the real problems and barriers are.

    eg recognizing the UNFCCC COP system is total BS needs to be step one of facing Reality surely? Sitting back waiting for some grand breakthrough by COP [ that is the most powerful National Governments in the world ] of the crisis being treated like an existential crisis/emergency seems pretty naive and stupid to me (but each to their own.) Excuses are just that, excuses.

    So to me, and yes I could have this all wrong, the real issue isn’t whether regen is super good or useless or maybe not a complete panacea … the problem is it’s possible we will never know for sure due to it being such a non-existent priority.

    Why is this so? Because globally, I think, climate change is not being treated as major existential crisis by anyone. Even by those who actually believe it is an emergency and going to get worse.

    Therefore genuine potential broad-scale Mitigation options are being ignored, downplayed, and put in the too hard basket. “Oh dear, there is only so much a Govt can do.” Really? The US Govt and the Taxpayers had no problem borrowing to the hilt to fight WW2. Rationing worked fine in WW2 too!!!

    So, how about considering the bleeding obvious of sustainably driving down Consumption across the board in the mega wealthy but wasteful advanced economies .. and finding more sustainable, life enhancing, and ethical ways for Humans to live and reach their potential without killing or destroying everything around us. Including each other.

    Quote, “The standard you walk past is the standard you accept.”
    Lieutenant General David Lindsay Morrison

    Sure the powerful back room manipulators have way too much power. What can I do? Yet, the fact remains, that we all continue to accept that Reality as the way it is. People keep getting away with doing the wrong thing.

    (and yes, then there’s psychology of course, and every other reason under the Sun why it’s so hard to fix. )

  27. 277
    Reality Check says:

    @265 “– reactors may need to be shut down if the water used for cooling during a heat wave (max. demand for electricity!) becomes too scarce and/or too warm (the workarounds are more expensive, less efficient, and pose safety risks for larger reactors) “

    A clarifying point. Which cooling are you referring to? Cooler Water to use within the steam turbines of nuke reactors, or the water needed to cool the reactor core itself?

    The issue doesn’t arise with many of the new GenIV options, that do not use water for reactor cooling, but molten salt, helium and so on instead.

    If high temps are an issue for the water/steam turbines, then it is equally a problem for coal and gas fired stations using steam turbines.

    https://www.world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/IAEA-GIF-call-for-faster-deployment-of-next-genera

    https://www.world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/China-starts-construction-of-demonstration-SMR

    https://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/nuclear-fuel-cycle/nuclear-power-reactors/generation-iv-nuclear-reactors.aspx

    https://www.world-nuclear.org/Information-Library/Country-Profiles/countries-A-F/China-Nuclear-Power.aspx

    There are pros and cons for all modes of energy supply. GenIV nuclear has some profound advantages and benefits. Using nuclear waste as Fuel and being meltdown proof being only two of them. I think it is a horses for courses kind of thing. Like PV solar can be used where its impossible to locate a hydro dam. An SMR can be built into a ship and therefore it’s mobile. Wind turbines can be located in the sea. Not so coal fired generators. :-)

  28. 278
    Reality Check says:

    @262 and @273 A better reason … economies of scale. Imagine the population of Florida (Australia’s population) being the total Population in the continental USA, ex-Alaska, and spread all over the pland and concentrated in a few large cities. Think the tyranny of distance? Per capita emissions would be higher than for 330 million population.

    Now imagine that same situation exporting 90% of the Agriculture they produce, and having massive mining exports including Coal. GHGs per capita are bound to be higher than the norm.

    It’s better to not even try to compare the two countries. It makes no difference to anything real anyway.

  29. 279
    Reality Check says:

    @272
    3. it can’t be that large, since China despite being the largest (absolute) emitter on behalf of the others (to whom it exports its goods): is responsible only for 12.7%.

    That does not follow. See the small print in the graph at top of https://ourworldindata.org/contributed-most-global-co2

    The 12.7% refers back to the total cumulative historical emissions of CO2 back to 1751 . China’s role as the world’s factory is a relatively new circumstance for the world.

    It would be far better and accurate to look at the last 20 years only of China’s exports and establish what GHG emission component needed to produce/manufacture and ship those Goods actually is recently. (someone has probably attempted to define that in a paper by now)

    But that will only define the present situation. It’s the largest cumulative historical emissions that got to the world to today. And that doesn’t mean China. The UK and the USA have the greatest responsibility for cumulative GHG emissions causing most of the 1.2C global warming today.

    It’s also why they have been two of the most wealthiest nations (nationally and per person) on earth for most of the last 200 years.

    example: Global mismatch between greenhouse gas emissions and the burden of climate change
    “Because the impacts of GHG emissions can be felt beyond a country’s border and the impacts of climate change on countries are highly variable, there is potential for some emitters to contribute more or less to the causes of climate change than is proportionate to their vulnerability to its effects9,10,11. This inequity has not gone unnoticed in international climate negotiations or global reporting1,3. As far back as 1992, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) committed to the principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities”, in which countries have a common responsibility in reducing GHG emissions, but historic emissions and differences in current development levels mean that countries have different levels of emissions reduction obligations9. Both of the previous IPCC Assessment Reports have acknowledged the inequity in the causes and effects of climate change1,12 although operationalising the principle has proved difficult13. This is primarily because developing and developed countries continue to disagree over the extent of each other’s responsibilities 13,14.”
    and
    “Countries least vulnerable to the impacts of climate change were generally the highest GHG emitters and conversely those most vulnerable to climate change were the least responsible for its genesis.”
    https://www.nature.com/articles/srep20281

    The UNFFC and the COP is THE Problem; and obviously, emissions cannot be properly compared between Nations individually. Per Capita contributions are far more appropriate; as is national wealth and income levels, the level of historical emissions too.

    The 1.4 billion people in China cannot be directly compared to other countries like the USA in total emissions. And Australia being near the 10th largest economy cannot be compared equally to other nations with 25 million people living in poverty.

    It’s complicated. At times made intentionally so. OBVIOUSLY the UNFCCC and the COP process is NOT managing these issues fairly with equity. That’s why over 100 developing nations keep on complaining about the process and the rules. While the most wealthiest nations make excuses for their demands of special treatment. eg Kevin Anderson is one who keeps pointing this out how unfair and unjust the system is.

    And of course there is a real need to make Border Adjustments of exporters and importers to establish the true level of CONSUMPTION of Products that have generated GHG emissions. But ignoring historical emmissions contributions entrenches unfairness; keeps the Knee of the Rich on the Throats of the smaller, weaker, poorer nations.

    The people of China should NOT be made accountable for the excessive consumption of the USA, Europe and the rest of the OECD nations they make products for. The US and UK should be the first two nations required to be at Net-Zero emissions long before other nations, and decades before some nations.

    also see
    24 September 2010
    Contributions of individual countries’ emissions to climate change and their uncertainty
    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10584-010-9930-6

    (highly recommended, full paper)
    National contributions to observed global warming
    H Damon Matthews1, Tanya L Graham1, Serge Keverian1, Cassandra Lamontagne1, Donny Seto1 and Trevor J Smith1
    Published 15 January 2014
    https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/9/1/014010/meta

    Nothing about climate change is simple nor easy to understand, and it’s even harder to solve.

  30. 280
    Reality Check says:

    Increasing RegenAg Crop Yields solved? When you might least expect it, something new arrives.

    July 22, 2021
    RNA breakthrough creates crops that can grow 50% more potatoes, rice
    by University of Chicago

    Manipulating RNA can allow plants to yield dramatically more crops, as well as increasing drought tolerance, announced a group of scientists from the University of Chicago, Peking University and Guizhou University.

    In initial tests, adding a gene encoding for a protein called FTO to both rice and potato plants increased their yield by 50% in field tests. The plants grew significantly larger, produced longer root systems and were better able to tolerate drought stress. Analysis also showed that the plants had increased their rate of photosynthesis.

    “The change really is dramatic,” said University of Chicago Prof. Chuan He, who together with Prof. Guifang Jia at Peking University, led the research. “What’s more, it worked with almost every type of plant we tried it with so far, and it’s a very simple modification to make.”

    The researchers are hopeful about the potential of this breakthrough, especially in the face of climate change and other pressures on crop systems worldwide.

    “This really provides the possibility of engineering plants to potentially improve the ecosystem as global warming proceeds,” said He, who is the John T. Wilson Distinguished Service Professor of Chemistry, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

    “Even beyond food, there are other consequences of climate change,” said He. “Perhaps we could engineer grasses in threatened areas that can withstand drought. Perhaps we could teach a tree in the Midwest to grow longer roots, so that it’s less likely to be toppled during strong storms. There are so many potential applications.”

    The study is published in Nature Biotechnology.
    https://phys.org/news/2021-07-rna-breakthrough-crops-potatoes-rice.html

    I am not holding my breath for this to become mainstream either. Makes you wonder though.

  31. 281
    Killian says:

    260 mike says:
    21 Jul 2021 at 7:29 PM

    at K: sorry, I felt a little attacked by 240, but it’s not a big deal. Maybe I just didn’t understand what that post was about? I still think more civility, less name-calling would be welcome. Are you willing to join with me in being less reactive in general? I hope your answer to that is yes.

    Honestly, I did not know whose words those were. I responded to a post by E-P – though that wouldn’t have altered my response.

    :-)

    We have a real problem in this era, one i think that started with the 60’s activism, ramped up with Stepford Wives-like NVC (non-violent communication) advocacy, got twisted in the 80’s and 90’s as “political correctness”
    and now basically means anything less than language one might use with the queen at tea just isn’t acceptable. A bit hyperbolic, but, really, not much.

    But the world is one huge fox hole and WWIII is raging: Us vs ourselves and Nature. Just as there are said to be no atheists in a fox hole, there are no tea parties with the queen, either. I actulla whooly believe NVC-type communication works beautifully in small communities/groups where the connections are deep and long-term. It mirrors exactly what we see in Aborigine communities – and probably came from them. You can stand in a circle around the guy who’s been acting like an asshole and sing his name song to both shower him with love and support and remind him who he is and to cause him to self-reflect and change his behavior. But this is not that community. We have no shared experience and no mechanism for managing individual differences. Tolerance is the word of the day, and it is sorely lacking.

    My harshness on this forum now is a direct result if being insulted, belittled and dismissed for years by a significant percentage of the core posters here. It didn’t arise out of nowhere. But, now that is the mode because it’s now years of habit. But more importantly, we are in a fight for survival and I jsut don’t have time to coddle liars and their bullshit. I use foxhole language because that is the state we find ourselves in – and because I am a just-the-facts sort who sees little point in niceties that are only custom and not actually necessary.

    Still, you will notice neutral-to-polite posts that deal with honest differences will get the same from me. But there’s a lot of provocation and outright dishonesty on this forum…

    Anywho… point is, we all need to focus on the problems at hand and try not to take personal that which is not personal. “Naive” probably triggered your response, but that was my honest reaction to those questions. It wasn’t meant to be insulting. As I said, I didn’t who had said them.

    We have a lot of work to do persuading others that trading standard of living for quality of life is worth some deep consideration. We have a lot of work to do helping folks consider the big picture benefits of things like regen ag over chem ag.

    Indeed. This, not the GND, is the great act of our time.

    So, sorry if you felt attacked.

    Nope, thus the quotes to try to show I thought my comments had been no harsher than what you said in your response.

    Cheers

  32. 282
    Reality Check says:

    What could local and regional Governments possibly do to enhance ongoing reductions in GHG emissions and/or to encourage sequestration in farming lands? Here’s a very simple example:

    Zhengzhou Gov: As of 1 Aug, city orders all new concrete mixer trucks as #EV, new local OEM mixer product portfolio must be 50% EV, as of Oct #diesel mixer trucks banned from city center.
    (EVPARTNER report) https://twitter.com/DKurac/status/1418104035568078848

    Multiply that example by thousands upon thousands of similar Law changes every year. But we can’t do that. Oh no. That’d be bad.

  33. 283

    #268, DB–

    Are you so sure that, post-February-2021, future interconnects to ERCOT will be viewed similarly to the past? I think Texans will want to avoid similar traumas in the future.

    As for longer-term storage in Texas, flow battery tech is just hitting the marketplace now, and could well be an answer, or partial answer. There actually are a few potential pumped hydro sites in West Texas, as well, but there’s a real abundance of them just across the river in Mexico (as well as world-class solar potential, though Texas already has lots of that.)

    Politics could of course be a challenge, but the technical potential is, I think, quite enormous. And if Canada can supply power to US consumers, why not Mexico? All in the same ‘freer trade’ bloc, after all… Texas just has to decide to try something a bit different.

  34. 284

    #270, nigel–

    Folks who invoke Jeavon’s Paradox often do so with the unstated assumption of very high elasticity of demand–i.e., that consumption will simply increase proportionally to the inverse of price. But IRL that doesn’t uniformly happen; a common example is gasoline consumption; since many consumers are in the position that ‘you’ve got to have it,’ they have little room to do more than minor deferrals of gasoline purchases, no matter the price. So the demand response to price change tends to be rather muted. The question is, what would the elasticity of lower energy prices be?

    https://www.investopedia.com/terms/p/priceelasticity.asp

    And to what extent could social norms influence it? It’s not that hard to imagine scenarios in which conspicuous consumption becomes stigmatized: for example, note the petition circulated in advance of the Bezos sub-orbital flight that he not return!

    https://www.change.org/p/the-proletariat-do-not-allow-jeff-bezos-to-return-to-earth

    A bit more seriously, c.f. also the custom of ‘potlatch’ in various indigenous communities in western North America:

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

    (Though admittedly, in order to give away wealth, you must have accumulated some in the first place!)

    Then there’s the historical inversion of fat as status determinant/symbol: once desirable, as in the line from Fiddler On The Roof:

    I see my wife, my Golde, looking like a rich man’s wife with a proper double-chin.

    Now, of course, not so much.

    (Though admittedly, the stigmatization of body fat has only accompanied a steep rise in the prevalence of the latter; what does that say about ‘price’ and ‘demand’?)

  35. 285
    Richard the Weaver says:

    Piotr: In general, the mismatch between peak demand and supply can be addressed in 2 ways

    RtW: because nuclear design is prohibited from using an ammonia bottoming cycle (instead of a steam cycle) because _______.

    Fill in the blank, Smarty Pants.

  36. 286
    David B Benson says:

    Nigelj @271 —- It just takes clicking on one extra link.

  37. 287
    Piotr says:

    David B Benson (268) “Don’t believe Jacobson, who assumes transmission is a solvable problem

    Sure, I shall believe Benson: that national grids are unsolvable, yet 100,000 nuclear reactors, installed and operated in a couple of decades mostly in the Third World – easy, peasy!

    Then again why it wouldn’t be – if your Nuclear Poet have just compared building a 770MW 10-reactor nuclear power plant with …. one Liberty ship (i.e. “essentially a welded barge with an obsolescent triple expansion steam engine ” jgnfld), made at the cost of $37 mln (2021 $) each, and churned up at the rate of 3 per day…

    DBB: “Explain how ERCOT Texas is to manage without natural gas.Go to it

    Explain how your question proves your claim that the national grids are impossible. You know, your _only_, and therefore deemed by you sufficient, proof^* to discredit Jacobson et al.

    And … “ Go to it“? Arrogance from _you_? Really?

    PS. ^* On the bright side, in your attempt to discredit Jacobson AT LEAST you didn’t pull a full “E-P”:

    Poet (8) “ F’rinstance, this little gem regarding total storage power[…] He’s talking storage power roughly 8x the average load on the US grid.

    i.e. … missing that the paper was NOT about the US today, but about … 143 countries and in _decarbonized_(i.e. much higher electricity demand) future. Not mentioning that “143 countries” was in THE TITLE of the paper.
    Little gem“, indeed.

  38. 288
    Richard the Weaver says:

    Piotr,
    You say that the way they built nuclear power plants in the 70’s was unacceptable. I agree.

    But you also say that it is impossible to build better nuclear power plants than they built in the 70s. I emphatically disagree. And I think that harping about 70s era power plant deficiencies is moronic.

    So, are you saying that it is impossible to build a modern nuclear power plant? That nukes are stuck forever in the 1970s?

  39. 289

    @279:

    The US and UK should be the first two nations required to be at Net-Zero emissions long before other nations, and decades before some nations.

    Can we even afford to play the blame game?  Reductions should be made as rapidly as possible, and that means wherever they are cheapest.  It doesn’t matter whether that’s Nebraska, Newcastle or Nepal.

  40. 290

    @285:

    RtW: because nuclear design is prohibited from using an ammonia bottoming cycle (instead of a steam cycle) because _______.

    Because it’s not worth the capital cost and safety issues, especially because the bulk of the cost of the plant is outside the nuclear island.  I’ve never heard of a single fossil-fired plant which uses an ammonia cycle.

  41. 291

    @287:

    Sure, I shall believe Benson: that national grids are unsolvable, yet 100,000 nuclear reactors, installed and operated in a couple of decades mostly in the Third World – easy, peasy!

    None of this is going to be easy, but it’s going to be easier to have each country powered by sources within their borders than to try to get sometimes-quarreling states to share electric power.  It’s most definitely going to be easier to build net energy sources than spending huge resources on net energy sinks.

    Some nuclear technologies, like the Elysium fast-spectrum reactor, are actually less complex than coal-fired plants as there’s no need for complex fuel preparation or ash handling (ash handling rapidly became a problem at Eskom’s coal plants in S. Africa, as the corrupt new management embezzled the maintenance money).  LFTR is only a bit more complex than Elysium, as it has core graphite which needs to be managed.  LFTR can be scaled much more quickly than Elysium’s MCSFR because it needs far less fissile material and can breed it more quickly, while MCSFR can “burn” spent LWR fuel as well as weapons-grade Pu and denature it quite thoroughly.  These things all have their strong and weak points, but they share one critical plus:  they are all emissions-free.

  42. 292
    Piotr says:

    prl (275)” Piotr @273: having 75% of their [Australia’s] electricity from coal instead 19% may have something to do with it.”

    I’m not sure where that figure is from.

    From Australian Government (Geoscience Australia) https://www.ga.gov.au/scientific-topics/energy/overview

    A standout difference between the two is in nuclear: 0% Australia, and 19% USA, and it’s about the difference between the total fossil fuel percentages.

    To me the Australia’s reliance on the coal stands out even more: even using your lower numbers – 56% from coal – given almost twice lower heat/CO2 emission efficiency of coal – means that replacement of coal with natural gas would have reduced electricity emissions by >25%.
    Not mentioning that gas plants are more flexible – can quickly ramp down and up, when the demand drops off, coal – not so much, so the emission difference per NEEDED electricity is correspondingly larger.

  43. 293
    nigelj says:

    Reality Check @276

    “And what if it (regenerative agriculture) is a panacea for agriculture, the environment and drawing down emissions long term?”

    Regenerative agriculture is unlikely to be a panacea because environmental problems include numerous problems unrelated to agriculture. But yes I agree to the extent that regenerative agriculture seems generally very useful long term and this is precisely because its does address a range of issues, including both some environmental impacts, sustainable resource use, and soil carbon. It’s just the excessive hype that makes me grind my teeth. Excessive hype ends up being counter productive because it turns people off and is so easily exposed.

    “Whilst I don’t expect much progress uptake, for reasons given, I am definitely not saying that is a good thing, nor ethical or the right approach to be taking. Nor should it be seen as Acceptable”

    Same with me. However we just also have to acknowledge reality of what things can be changed, how much and how quickly and focus on the things that will make a big difference but have at least some chance of gaining traction with the public. Theres no point pursuing / promoting some theoretical solution if the public will have no part of it. It becomes like banging your head against a wall. Old saying: ” The perfect is the enemy of the good.” But the public do seem receptive to regenerative agriculture from what I read in our local media.

    “And Govts have a lot more power than simply handing out grants. Intercontinental railroads, highways, the internet, and schools and universities didn’t just appear out of nowhere.”

    Yes. It comes back to the proper role of government, but those of us with a commonsense, “centrist” political leaning like myself certainly think governments have a role to play in supporting basic infrastructure and education, because these are an essential public goods and free markets don’t always deliver these two things adequately. And it could be argued governments have a role in supporting certain types of new ventures like regenerative agriculture, again where these are a public good and free markets alone might not be enough to always get them started. It seems to be gaining a little bit of traction in New Zealand without needing support but this might not be the case everywhere.

    “This is exactly what the problems is. The rich and powerful block such support, they manipulate the political processes and the financial support needed.”

    Yes. Lobby groups, particularly those representing established interests, have a huge hold over governments especially with political campaign donations. I’ve called for tax payer funded election campaigns because it gets money out of politics and wouldn’t cost the tax payer much in the greater scheme of things, but unfortunately the public just hate the idea of tax payer funding some party they don’t like. The trouble is many people don’t think beyond their emotive political biases.

    “Oh dear, there is only so much a Govt can do.” Really? The US Govt and the Taxpayers had no problem borrowing to the hilt to fight WW2. ”

    Yes government can do plenty when you look at the massive increase in production in WW2. However government debt is now at its limits in many places, due the global financial crash and covid 19. I reckon government climate mitigation efforts may have to count on money creation mechanisms like QE and taxation. But those are technicalities. Government just has to find the money and help sort out the climate problem, especially with incentives for a new energy grid. Individuals can do some things on their own initiative, but they can’t modernise electricity grids.

  44. 294
    David B Benson says:

    Piotr @287 —- I didn’t propose 100,000 nuclear reactors; quit flailing.
    ERCOT Texas is one part of one of Jacobson”s 24 regions. I repeat, where is Texas to obtain power, without natural gas, when the wind doesn’t blow? Just stating “a national grid” is a non-answer; be precise.

  45. 295
    David B Benson says:

    Kevin McKenny @283
    https://bravenewclimate.proboards.com/thread/705/lcoe-lace
    Contains a link to Oliver Schmidt’s work on storage costs. Note the very high costs associated with long term storage.

  46. 296
    Piotr says:

    Nuclear Poet(274) “ I don’t trust anything Jacobson says after his reaction to being debunked by Clack et al.

    By the same token, I don’t trust any of your engineering declarations or opinions – after you condescendingly dismissed the concerns about the viability and cost of building and operating 100,000 or more of nuclear reactors, most of them in the Third World countries, by comparing …. a 770MW 10-reactor power plant to building … one Liberty ship (as jgnfld put it “ essentially a welded barge with an obsolescent triple expansion steam engine“), at the cost of $37 mln (2021 $), churned up at the rate of 3 per day…

    Either you, supposedly an Engineer, honestly thought that building and operating a 770MW nuclear plant could be done as easily, as quickly, and as cheaply as building and operating one Liberty ship, or you KNEW these are ORDERS of magnitudes DIFFERENT, and yet you went with such a blatant lie anyway. I am not sure which of the two possibilities is worse.

    Nuclear Poet(274) “ Haven’t you read a word I’ve written? We’ve got uses for HUNDREDS of GW (average, not peak) of interruptible electric power to decarbonize parts of our economy which aren’t currently electrified.

    I have read enough to know that you can’t tell the difference between topping up the baseload during “peak” demand vs. providing …the baseload itself. I know that you can’t – because you tried to discredit the former by comparing it against the latter, and not once, but three times. And each time you ignored my explanations WHY it is a fallacy.

    And this is the pattern: you don’t, or can’t, accept facts or arguments outside of your orthodoxy. Which makes trying to learn something _from you_, or to look for truth _with you_ – pointless.

    This, of course, does not preclude occasional text _about you_: your methods, half- truths, manipulations and shoots in your own foot, or in the back of your side-kick, Benson. For example, if I find time – I may write something about your claims (276).

  47. 297
    Reality Check says:

    Flooding Hazards across Southern China and Prospective Sustainability Measures
    Published: 22 May 2018 https://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/10/5/1682/htm

    6. Concluding Remarks
    (3)To mitigate flooding hazards, China proposed a new strategy named Spongy City (SPC) in 2014, drawing on international experiences. SPC promotes sustainable city development so that a city has the resilience to adapt to climate change, to mitigate the impacts of waterlogging caused by extreme rainfall events. Some SPC construction-related problems, including local inundation in streets and flooding in rivers, meant that storm water use, water resource shortage, and water pollution control improved. Dredging rivers, constructing more LID facilities, and intercepting and purifying surface water are recommended to solve these problems.

  48. 298
    Reality Check says:

    July 22 News report
    China floods: how Zhengzhou’s ‘once in a thousand years’ rainfall compares

    City recorded a year’s worth of rain in just days, with a record 201.9mm falling in an hour

    WMO calls it ‘extremely serious’ and says extreme weather events are becoming more frequent due to climate change

    The city’s average annual rainfall is 641mm (25 inches), according to the UN climate agency.

    But 617.1mm (24 inches) of rain fell over the three days from Saturday night – the heaviest in 60 years – and by Wednesday it had reached the annual average, China’s National Meteorological Centre said.
    https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3142157/china-floods-how-zhengzhous-once-thousand-years-rainfall

  49. 299
    Piotr says:

    Re: Richard the Weaver (285)

    Piotr(265): In general, the mismatch between peak demand and supply can be addressed in 2 ways:
    – reducing it via storage and matching within grid
    – overbuild (you build more power than you would need except for the peak demand)

    Richard the W. (285): because nuclear design is prohibited from using an ammonia bottoming cycle (instead of a steam cycle) because _______. Fill in the blank, Smarty Pants.

    Fill in the blank, Smarty Pants?” Ouch, take me to the burn unit.
    After that, explain why do you expect _me_ to do _your_ work? The onus of proof is on that who makes the claim, NOT on somebody to whose argument that claim seems, at best, tangential. So it is _you_, not me, who has to:

    1. Explain what it is. My first Google hit is a 1981 paper – but it says “AFTER steam”, unlike yours: “INSTEAD of steam”. So?

    2. Show the widespread adoption of your technology in nuclear industry. They had AT LEAST 40 years to install it. If it was so good to justify your impertinent tone – then EVERYBODY must doing it now, right?

    3. If the answer to p.2 is “yes” – the question still remains: what is the relevance to my post? The 1981 article says “it will allow nuclear plants in France produce more energy in WINTER”. How exactly is this falsifying my argument that nukes produce more energy … in WINTER?

    4. Or if the answer to p. 2 is “no”, i.e., not every nuke today has it – then WHY not?

  50. 300
    nigelj says:

    EP and DBB seem sceptical of interconnected state grids to help deal with renewable intermittency issues. But most states in America ALREADY share power with neighbouring states, so have interconnected grids. So they seemed to have already overcome technical, practical, political, and land ownership / land rights issues. So its hard to see an expanded more modern system being such an almighty mountain to climb.

    That said, nuclear power seems simpler to me, and its mainly the impediments like current systems being slow to build and public resistance that suggest renewables is going to be the main way forwards.

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