October 5, 2016 19 Comments
A couple of reports mixed here, because they go to the same point. First, South Australia had a power outage last week. Ordinarily, that’s not news, but in this case, I gather nearly the whole state was off. Why? Here’s Andrew Bolt to tell you.
South Australia ran to Canberra for subsidies to protect Arium Steel – which has now been shut down in part because of the state’s ruinously juvenile obsession with green power. Terry McCrann and Nick Cater expose how green power is killing South Australia.
ABSOLUTE unmitigated, undiluted bullcrap: the desperate, indeed seriously panicked claim that South Australia going ‘all North Korea black’ last week had nothing to do with its embrace of useless wind ‘power’ (sic).
Now for the facts. Yes, the proximate cause of SA’s power failure was transmission towers being blown down in last week’s storm.
We’ll put aside the rather important question of whether they were blown down because they weren’t built robustly enough, because the scattered nature of wind turbines requires so many of them that it would cost too much to ‘gold plate them.’
That said, despite the additional lies told by the global warming fanatics, the winds in SA last Wednesday were neither unprecedented nor particularly violent. They didn’t top 100kmh; they didn’t even reach the speeds of the lowest level of cyclone.
The key question, the question that utterly damns the SA reliance on wind turbines, is what happened next — when SA ‘lost’ its wind generation.
As AEMO — the Australian Energy Market Operator, — explained in a press statement last Thursday, the damaged transmission lines supported supply and generation north of Adelaide.
But “the reason why a cascading failure of the remainder of the South Australia network occurred is still to be identified and is subject to further investigation.”
Without stating so, AEMO then gave precisely the answer.
About 1900 megawatts (MW) was being consumed in South Australia at the time of the power failure, AEMO said; the SA generation — mostly, my words, wind from the north — was “being supported” by a total of 610MW from Victoria.
What AEMO didn’t say, but is blindingly obvious, when wind ‘generation’ dropped from around 900MW to zero literally in an instant, SA just as instantly ‘asked’ Victoria for that 900MW.
So suddenly the long extension cord from the coal-fired stations in the Latrobe Valley was being asked to increase its supply from around 500MW to around 1500MW.
In effect, the ‘wind-powered state’ wanted to ‘borrow’ almost the entire output of one of Victoria’s coal-fired stations. And it wanted to borrow it immediately, at 4.18pm last Wednesday. The cord just ‘shorted out.’ …
There are two damning, utterly undeniable points that prove it was ‘all about wind.’
If you are going to rely on the unreliable power ‘sources’ of wind or solar, when the wind don’t blow and/ or the sun don’t shine, you have to have back-up from a reliable power source, either gas or coal.
Further, you have to keep that back-up turning over, because when the wind don’t blow or the sun don’t shine, it can go from 1000MW to zip pretty quickly — even without dodgy towers falling over.
Which of course makes the whole exercise a farce. Why have wind at all to replace coal or gas if you still have to keep the coal/gas?
Unless, and this is the critical second point, you try to do it on the cheap — both the real cheap and the ‘environmental’ cheap: by using that long extension cord to ‘someone else’s dirty power.’ Except Wednesday showed us exactly what can happen when you do that.
It is barely two months since Weatherill demanded $100 million from Canberra to keep Arrium Steel working. Yet it was the blackout, a consequence of Labor’s renewables policy, that finally shut the Whyalla plant down. Enforced idleness is costing Arrium about $4m a day.
Green politics really is shutting down Whyalla, after all.
South Australia is also running to other states to supply it with the kind of power it deems too dirty to produce itself – yet needs to keep on the lights:
The state’s capacity to produce its own baseload power from fossil fuels has rapidly diminished. The state’s four largest power stations — two at Port Augusta, Pelican Point and Torrens Island A — will have closed or will be in mothballs by this time next year, made unviable by unpredictable deluges of cheap wind power.
The combined lost capacity of 1250MW represents a third of the state’s generating potential. What has filled the gap? You’ve guessed it: imported power from Victoria, generated mostly by the same brown coal deemed unacceptable in oh-so-clean South Australia.
Upgrading the national grid to give South Australians the comfort of a reliable energy supply will be expensive. The costs inevitably will push up power prices, passed on as another hidden cost of Labor’s carbon fetish.
And that’s the thing if the sun don’t shine, or the wind don’t blow (or blows too hard) your solar and wind power don’t work. And no, nobody has an efficient means to store power. A lot of taxpayer’s money has been squandered on it though, with very limited results. And what South Australia has done is exactly what California is doing, for the same political reason. Eventually, it will have similar results.
And it diffuses the grid, which has other problems, such as security. I have wondered for years when I would write this story, because, to me, it’s the obvious way to disrupt life in the west, disrupt the power grid. From Weaponsman.
In 2014, we asked, “What can a mere rifle do?” in reference to a standoff attack on a Pacific Gas and Electric power substation in Metcalf, California.
The answer, in that case, was to blow the transformers to hell and gone, and bug out. To date, there has been no arrest in the case; at one time, a DHS official suggested it was an inside job. There have been subsequent attacks, despite attempts to upgrade security; indeed, once, criminals cut through a fence and made off with equipment that was on site — for security upgrades.
Now, there’s been a new rifle attack on a station, in rural Utah. It appears to have been less sophisticated and less persistent than the California attack, but more effective — the attacker or attackers blew the station off the grid with as few as three rifle shots.
On Sunday, somebody went to the remote substation located between Kanab and Page, Arizona, and fired at least three rounds with a high-powered rifle into the main transformer, knocking out power to an estimated 13,000 customers in Kanab, Big Water, Orderville, Glendale, Hatch and surrounding towns in Garfield County.
“Just from the looks of it, it looked more criminal than vandalism because they knew exactly where to shoot it and they shot it multiple times in the same spot,” Brown said. “For somebody to know exactly where that substation is and how to hit it exactly like he did, (it) seems like he’d have to have knowledge of that.”
Countermeasures that can be used in cases like this are limited. In California, the power company deployed cameras, but they’re investigative, not preventive, technology; and constructed blinds that block sight of the most vulnerable transformers, but they’re concealment, not cover. In Utah, the power company has asked for tips, and done something even less practical than the Californians:
Now you go and combine those stories, well if the bad guys do, we’re likely to go back a (or a few) hundred years. Substations are really hard to secure, and a rifle is the bottom level threat. There are others, and they would be more catastrophic.
Not sure there is really an answer, there’s not in this article, but it’s something we should be thinking about – at all levels.
And then there is the EMP threat attack, by the NORKs and others.