Good all in one article on sources of US power Generation + Batteries

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peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Hearth Supporter
Jul 11, 2008
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Northern NH
Hard to find all the data in one place


The chart for battery storage shows a long way to go although the jump between GW and GW/hrs in the other charts means an apples to oranges comparison. Nevertheless 30 GW (planned) to backup 4 millions GW hours sounds real low.

Folks also tend to forget that Natural Gas generation produces 60% less CO2 per KW so even the transition from coal to natural gas has some significant CO2 reduction. The problem with that benefit is it only works as long as natural gas plants are displacing coal plant and once an investment is made in a new natural gas plant, its going to be around for quite a while. Unless carbon capture becomes financially viable, it means that those plants at some point become a problem with respect to global warming. The other workaround is switch them to hydrogen or hydrogen blends if recent reports of underground hydrogen reservoirs are true.

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Indeed. The US generation sector has realized large decreases in CO2 on the back of natural gas, not renewables. But that game is almost up, as coal passed reneweables in 2023, on its way to oblivion.

I think the trend is that new gas construction has been tapering off as investors realize that it is likely also a mal-investment, due to concerns over future capacity factor and amortization, esp post 2032.
 
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Living near a coal generation plant which has now been converted to natural gas I can see the immediate improvements beyond CO2 emmisions. Our roofs don't get stained any longer. Also the huge coal ash dump is no longer growing, now it's just monitored as it pollutes the groundwater and we wait for the next environmental disaster when it lets go and dumps into the river it's next to. For those that only know about coal emissions or think there is clean coal google coal ash disaster in TN.
 
Sounds like the Kingston disaster. The workers that cleaned up that mess got sick afterward, many died. There was another one in North Carolina too after hurricane Florence. All it takes is a record breaking storm to cause these ponds to breach. There are about 1100 of these sites across the US.
 
Sounds like the Kingston disaster. The workers that cleaned up that mess got sick afterward, many died. There was another one in North Carolina too after hurricane Florence. All it takes is a record breaking storm to cause these ponds to breach. There are about 1100 of these sites across the US.
Yes, Kingston coal ash spill, know truckers that went there to work driving the dump trucks that hauled it away to someone else's backyard. If I walk to the end of my road I can look across the river and see the next possible disaster waiting to happen, huge coal ash dump. it rises way above the river and looks pretty as it's got a nice dirt and grass cover so most have no clue what it is. I've been on top of it, nice road all around the top with monitor wells keeping track of that clean coal ash.
Now we're supposed to be getting an electrical storage battery site on the site of the nuclear reactor plant that was never completed, again right on the river. Same river that the next county down pulls its drinking water from. What could go wrong?
 
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Yeah, that was a disaster. Saw it shortly after it had happened.

That coal plant is now gas? That's good.
 
Here's an interesting map that is supposed to give real-time emission data from the electricity sector. I'm not sure how accurate it is, but seeing the Alberta's yearly g/kwh figures this is at least in the ball park.

Canada's average from 2020 is 110 g/kwh, where that report above puts the US average at 390g/kwh. Alberta sits at 580g/kwh for 2022 (2023 numbers not released yet) down from 850g/kwh in 2015.

 
Here's an interesting map that is supposed to give real-time emission data from the electricity sector. I'm not sure how accurate it is, but seeing the Alberta's yearly g/kwh figures this is at least in the ball park.

Canada's average from 2020 is 110 g/kwh, where that report above puts the US average at 390g/kwh. Alberta sits at 580g/kwh for 2022 (2023 numbers not released yet) down from 850g/kwh in 2015.

Looks like it’s estimating all th data for my location. I have to look at it for a cloudy day and see how/if it changes. Interesting finding. I was assuming the best time to charge my car was late nigh early as it would be consuming mostly nuclear power. The graphs show the lowest grid emissions are when the sun is shining and solar generation hitting the grid.
 
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Note that NC a couple of decades ago, and recently TN effectively declared natural gas "green" to qualify for incentives tied to global warming to encourage the transition from coal to something cleaner. Coal plants tend to be baseload plants that really do not like to be turned down while modern combined cycle gas plants have a lot of turn down capability. The problem is that its intermediate step investing in new plants that ultimately will need to be replaced soon with renewables or nuclear to meet climate goals. The alternative is to retrofit these natural gas plants with carbon capture technology if there is a suitable geology nearby to sequester the carbon.
 
CATL announced they are getting into the energy storage business. They have developed a 20 ft., modular unit with 6.25 MW capacity. There is no price yet, but I expect it to be competitive.

 
Been proposals for energy storage facility in my county. Whether or not it ever happens who knows. We have been known to have a lot of follies when it comes to energy and jobs in the county. The site is where they started but never competed a nuclear plant years ago.
 
As I recall from living in CA, March and April were the months with fairly long days where I could heat and cool my home to a desirable temperature simply by leaving the windows open all the time. The coming 10 months, not so much.

Glad they're enjoying patting themselves on the back though. I imagine that their success will soon result in a substantial drop in their even more substantial electric prices🤣.

Don't get me wrong, it's a good thing that the huge investment their ratepayers made in renewables is paying some dividends. It's just that they picked a pretty easy measure of success if they were expecting the media to offer a lot of "news coverage". A whole summer without a threat of rolling blackouts - that might be newsworthy. Hold on - am I expressing faith in the judgement of the media? I need to get more sleep!
 
As I recall from living in CA, March and April were the months with fairly long days where I could heat and cool my home to a desirable temperature simply by leaving the windows open all the time. The coming 10 months, not so much.

Glad they're enjoying patting themselves on the back though. I imagine that their success will soon result in a substantial drop in their even more substantial electric prices🤣.

Don't get me wrong, it's a good thing that the huge investment their ratepayers made in renewables is paying some dividends. It's just that they picked a pretty easy measure of success if they were expecting the media to offer a lot of "news coverage". A whole summer without a threat of rolling blackouts - that might be newsworthy. Hold on - am I expressing faith in the judgement of the media? I need to get more sleep!

As I recall from my time in California, the rolling blackouts were caused by Enron bros illegally gaming the market (while sitting in Texas), and joking about little old ladies dying, and got caught on tape doing it!

I agree that CA is taking the expensive, early adopter govt mandate route to renewable energy. Its a free country, and maybe they will get run out of town on a rail. Maybe not.

Also that the article's metric, which is not 100% generation over a daily period, but peak renewable production exceeding demand for some short time, is not clear from the headline. BUT, that metric is relevant for the burgeoning grid battery storage market.

In these pages, for MANY years, posters insisted that we could never get over 20% solar (or sometimes 20% renewable) grid energy, because storage was impossible. And so, there was little point in even building that first 20% given how ruinously expensive it was!

In 2024, we build more solar than anything else on a national level. Because its cheaper than anything else almost everywhere.

Folks are now starting to use solar panels as fencing, because it is cheaper than metal fencing panels. ;lol

And I insisted that by the time solar got to 20%, batteries would be cheap (enough), and it would be full steam ahead on even more solar.

And that is just what CA is doing today. :cool: As in, when they finally have so much renewables to hit the grid load sometimes, they don't curtail the extra... they store it!

And ofc, California by virtue of being early at this, is paying top dollar for it. Not as much as the Germans spent 10 years ago, but a lot. If folks don't like it they can move to Texas, which is right on their heels in terms of per capita production, but pinching their pennies while doing so.
 
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Here's an interesting hockey stick graph. Storage is on roll.

Good all in one article on sources of US power Generation + Batteries
 
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