Monday, January 21, 2013

Pupatello And Wynne Support Offshore Wind

Offshore wind should be a slam-dunk.  After all its offshore, way out of sight of any protesting NIMBYs.  So it is good to know that the two front runners in the OLP leadership race have come out in support of the concept. From a North American Wind Power presser:

The good news is that Sandra Pupatello and Kathleen Wynne - two of the front-runners vying to lead Ontario's Liberal Party - both have expressed support for offshore wind. 

It is worth pointing out that these kinds of projects have even less environmental impact than the on-shore variety:

Siting the project further from the shoreline alleviates much of the avian impact, because 93% to 95% of such incidents happen within 1 km of the shore... 

And its also worth pointing out that the purpose, or at least one purpose, of the Green Energy Act was to get Ontario off coal.  If anyone remembers T.O. summers from the late 1980s, you might recall those smog clouds that would float in over the city and hang there for days, until your sweat tasted of chemicals. They're not so frequent anymore, and the McGuinty's government can take some credit for it.


Paul Kuster said...

Lousy technology be it on land or offshore is still lousy technology. Offshore might garner another 3% or 4% efficiency, making the construction/maintenance costs affordable. Even with the pathetic performance of wind, the subsidy amounts paid to out of province corporations is still grotesque and will climb even higher with each installation. Just an example, on Jan 4 wind decided to perform close to what's advertised.As a result, the over generation (thanks to wind)cost $4.8 million. We managed to sell it off and received $800,000.00 for it leaving taxpayers holding the bag for $4 million. FOR JUST ONE DAY. I know what I could spend $4 mil on. I bet you've got a pretty decent wish list and I'm sure the gov't could've spent that better on priorities for Ontarians and not giving it away to American corps such as NextEra or Capital Power.

Schmenge said...

Paul, as a long time investor in various renewable energy projects - and watching the Offshore Wind sector in Ontario - I have no idea where you get your numbers. One company that I have been watching here in Ontario is Trillium Power Wind Corporation ( They were (are?) Ontario's leader in the North American Offshore Wind sector. According to their published numbers their TPW1 site in Eastern Lake Ontario (28km from the mainland) had a NET Capacity Factor of approximately 42%. That is significantly higher than onshore wind at between 20% and 28%. Your differential of "3% or 4% efficiency" is not even in the ballpark of between 22% to 14% differential. Another point, renewables (Offshore Wind included) are NOT SUBSIDIZED. Paying the ALL-IN price of energy is not SUBSIDIZATION. Hiding and avoiding the inclusion of costs into the calculation IS SUBSIDIZATION. Nuclear based generation DOES NOT pay for its use of water (Trillions of Litres PER DAY - avoided cost), nor the cost of insurance (German Insurance Institute in Leipzig has calculated the avoided cost of insurance at a minimum cost of $2.49/kWh) nor the cost of a long term repository for the highly radioactive byproducts nor for the dismantling of the nuclear reactors once they can no longer be refurbished). According to the CEC (California Energy Commission) the cost of just building a new nuclear reactor is between 17 c/kWh and 34 c/kWh depending on if the facility is funded with taxpayer guaranteed financing or private corporation financing (no taxpayer guarantee). If you want to be generous and use the 17 cents/kWh to build a new reactor and then add 10 cents/kWh for the avoided cost of water and $2.49/kWh for insurance that is NOT PAID by the generator as all liabilities (save for a $75MM fine in Canada) are at the expense of the citizens of Ontario then the minimum cost of nuclear in Ontario is at least $2.89/kWh which is 15 TIMES the Feed-In-Tarrif in Ontario of 19 c/KWh. That number of $2.89/kWh does not even include the cost of nuclear fuel, staff and other operations so the final number would be much higher as it has always been anywhere in the World.
Germany is not stupid and if their can take approximately 55,000 MW of nuclear offline and still operate the second largest exporting country in the World (recently eclipsed by China which has 17X the population) and has a high wage and social cost society then Ontario, Canada and the USA can also do it as well. BTW - Germany is replacing their nuclear with Offshore Wind from the North Sea and East Sea (Baltic).
I would suggest that you please get your facts straight.

Holly Stick said...

Look, there's money to be made opposing wind power:

Scott Luft said...

The figures Paul Kuster notes look to be from my site and the sources of the figures are reference there:

Tonight at 7 the production was far worse, and came as demand hit a new winter peak – putting total productivity from wind and solar at under 5% of capacity – and if you want to look at Germany today, you'll find pretty much the same picture there.
No matter how much flimsy assetions inflate the price of other generating capacity, it is besides the point.
Wind does not replace any generating capacity.
Germany's produced about 8% of all generation with wind in 2012, and that was down from 2011. Solar continued it's rapid growth, but still just over 5%. Hard coal and lignite both grew.
And their renewable surcharge, mainly due to these 2 renewable sources, now almost equates (with VAT) to the total rate of electricity in Ontario.
That's a strange success story.