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Blockading The Wind – Watts Up With That?

Visitor Put up by way of Willis Eschenbach

I stay studying about how offshore wind farms are the electrical energy producing manner of the longer term, as a result of they’re so darn affordable. Right here’s the New York Occasions at the matter:

The Biden management needs as much as 2,000 generators within the water within the subsequent 8 and a part years. Officers lately authorized a mission close to Martha’s Winery that languished all over the Trump management and in Might introduced make stronger for enormous wind farms off California’s coast. The $2 trillion infrastructure plan that Mr. Biden proposed in March would additionally build up incentives for renewable calories.”

The price of offshore wind generators has fallen about 80 p.c during the last twenty years, to as little as $50 a megawatt-hour. Whilst costlier in step with unit of calories than sun and wind farms on land, offshore generators incessantly make financial sense as a result of decrease transmission prices.

So I assumed I’d stroll in the course of the prices on some of the few US offshore wind farms, the Block Island Wind Farm.

First, the place is Block Island when it’s at house? Smartly, it’s a small island off the coast of Rhode Island, no longer some distance from the end of Lengthy Island, New York.

Location of Block Island is proven by way of the crimson pin

And what are the economics of the Block Island Wind Farm? Smartly, it accommodates 5 6-megawatt (MW, or 106 watts) large wind generators. In fact, on moderate they don’t put out 6 megawatts, as a result of from time to time the wind doesn’t blow … in reality, on moderate they simply put out a few 3rd of that, about 2 megawatts. That works out to about 92 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) in step with yr.

How a lot is that calories price? Smartly, the national moderate acquire price for a kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electrical energy is round four cents … and it’s then resold to the buyer at round 13 cents/kWh.

And what kind of is Rhode Island paying for this “affordable” wind calories? Dangle on on your jaw so it doesn’t hit the ground … they’re paying 24.four cents/kWh, six instances the nationwide moderate, and it’s going up by way of three.five% in step with yr … so in ten years it’s going to be 34.four cents/kWh.

The 5 wind generators off of Block Island

However wait, there’s extra. As a result of Rhode Island’s insane “renewables mandate” forcing them to shop for “affordable” renewable calories, sure, they’re paying the wind farm homeowners 24.four cents/kWh to buy the ability … however the energy corporate nonetheless wishes so as to add every other ten cents/kWh for transmission and upkeep and benefit. So for this “affordable inexperienced wind energy”, the deficient schlubs in Rhode Island are paying the wind farm homeowners about 34 cents in step with kWh, and in a decade it’s going to be 44 cents/kWh to the shopper. Oh, plus the surcharge to pay for the transmission cable as mentioned underneath.

Why is the ability price so prime? As a result of … smartly … to not put too wonderful some extent on it, the concept offshore wind energy is affordable is a complete fable. As a lifelong blue-water sailor I will attest to the reality of the outdated seadog’s maxim, which is “The wind is unfastened … however the whole thing else prices cash”.

Plus the greed issue, in fact …

Let’s get started with the preliminary prices. The development and set up of the wind farm price $350 million. The transmission line from Block Island to the mainland used to be every other $114 million, paid for one at a time by way of the mainland ratepayers.

Then it’s a must to upload in “O&M”, operation and upkeep prices, that are about $48,000 in step with megawatt in step with yr for offshore wind, or about $290,000 in step with yr at Block Island. At a mean of 28.6 cents/kWh over the following ten years, energy gross sales will web about $26 million in step with yr … so the corporate proudly owning the wind farm received’t even make a benefit till 13+ years down the road … and that’s no longer counting the “oops” issue.

What’s the “oops” issue? Smartly, it’s surprising repairs, or a wind turbine that will get destroyed in a typhoon, or, smartly, one thing like the next:

Oops … along with paying $114 million for the transmission cable within the first position, the deficient Rhode Island ratepayers also are at the hook for a portion of the $31 megabucks to pay to re-bury the ability cable that were given uncovered by way of waves, wind, and currents. And so as to add insult to harm, the homeowners are announcing it’s going to price greater than the unique estimate of $31 million to mend it … double oops.

And the place does the greed issue have compatibility in? Once more from the Rhode Island “Windfall Magazine”:

Nationwide Grid reaps $46M in extra earnings from RI wind surcharge

PROVIDENCE: Greater than a decade in the past, when policymakers put Rhode Island at the trail to web hosting the primary offshore wind farm within the country, they made a cut price. They knew that energy from the Block Island Wind Farm can be pricey however have been keen to pay the fee within the hopes that the mission would spur introduction of a brand new clean-energy trade within the state.

What they didn’t cut price for used to be that the wind farm would turn out to be a gold mine for an calories corporate that already had a dominant presence in Rhode Island: Nationwide Grid, the principle electrical software within the state and the landlord of the 20-mile undersea transmission cable that brings energy generated by way of the mission from a Block Island substation to the mainland energy grid.

Within the 4 years for the reason that 5 wind generators went into operation, Nationwide Grid has made $46 million in extra earnings from turning in electrical energy in the course of the cable, consistent with filings by way of the software according to questions by way of state regulators. That’s cash entering Nationwide Grid on most sensible of what used to be estimated for operations and upkeep of the cable, taxes on it, or even how a lot the corporate calculated it had to repay its set up and building prices through the years whilst nonetheless incomes an affordable benefit. And it’s cash paid completely by way of Rhode Islanders thru a surcharge on their electrical expenses.

What’s extra, although a significant portion of the cash used to be designated for operations and upkeep of the cable, Nationwide Grid by no means set the earnings apart in a reserve fund. So when the corporate agreed closing yr to rebury a part of the cable after it turned into uncovered by way of waves, Nationwide Grid determined to capitalize the $31 million in maintenance. That driven the full price of the transmission mission as much as greater than $145 million, and, because of this, the corporate is ready to make electrical shoppers pay much more for the cable’s use. Since the surcharge is in response to the price of the cable, the velocity is scheduled to extend in Might, necessarily rewarding Nationwide Grid with more cash for solving an issue that state coastal regulators, lengthy sooner than building started, warned may get up. In the meantime Ørsted, the Danish corporate that owns the wind farm and the portion of the cable that runs from the generators to the Block Island substation, is paying out of pocket for its percentage of the reburial.

And I haven’t even gotten to the decommissioning prices for when the generators die, and so they need to be got rid of from manner out in the course of the sea … oops.

So there you’ve it, people—affordable, clear, inexperienced, affordable offshore wind. What’s to not like?

My easiest to all, even the fast-dwindling choice of deficient benighted people who nonetheless imagine that the solar and wind can energy the planet …

w.

Da Standard: PLEASE QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU ARE DISCUSSING. I will and am glad to shield what I wrote. I will’t shield what you suppose I supposed once I wrote it.

Visitor Put up by way of Willis Eschenbach

I stay studying about how offshore wind farms are the electrical energy producing manner of the longer term, as a result of they’re so darn affordable. Right here’s the New York Occasions at the matter:

The Biden management needs as much as 2,000 generators within the water within the subsequent 8 and a part years. Officers lately authorized a mission close to Martha’s Winery that languished all over the Trump management and in Might introduced make stronger for enormous wind farms off California’s coast. The $2 trillion infrastructure plan that Mr. Biden proposed in March would additionally build up incentives for renewable calories.”

The price of offshore wind generators has fallen about 80 p.c during the last twenty years, to as little as $50 a megawatt-hour. Whilst costlier in step with unit of calories than sun and wind farms on land, offshore generators incessantly make financial sense as a result of decrease transmission prices.

So I assumed I’d stroll in the course of the prices on some of the few US offshore wind farms, the Block Island Wind Farm.

First, the place is Block Island when it’s at house? Smartly, it’s a small island off the coast of Rhode Island, no longer some distance from the end of Lengthy Island, New York.

Location of Block Island is proven by way of the crimson pin

And what are the economics of the Block Island Wind Farm? Smartly, it accommodates 5 6-megawatt (MW, or 106 watts) large wind generators. In fact, on moderate they don’t put out 6 megawatts, as a result of from time to time the wind doesn’t blow … in reality, on moderate they simply put out a few 3rd of that, about 2 megawatts. That works out to about 92 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) in step with yr.

How a lot is that calories price? Smartly, the national moderate acquire price for a kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electrical energy is round four cents … and it’s then resold to the buyer at round 13 cents/kWh.

And what kind of is Rhode Island paying for this “affordable” wind calories? Dangle on on your jaw so it doesn’t hit the ground … they’re paying 24.four cents/kWh, six instances the nationwide moderate, and it’s going up by way of three.five% in step with yr … so in ten years it’s going to be 34.four cents/kWh.

The 5 wind generators off of Block Island

However wait, there’s extra. As a result of Rhode Island’s insane “renewables mandate” forcing them to shop for “affordable” renewable calories, sure, they’re paying the wind farm homeowners 24.four cents/kWh to buy the ability … however the energy corporate nonetheless wishes so as to add every other ten cents/kWh for transmission and upkeep and benefit. So for this “affordable inexperienced wind energy”, the deficient schlubs in Rhode Island are paying the wind farm homeowners about 34 cents in step with kWh, and in a decade it’s going to be 44 cents/kWh to the shopper. Oh, plus the surcharge to pay for the transmission cable as mentioned underneath.

Why is the ability price so prime? As a result of … smartly … to not put too wonderful some extent on it, the concept offshore wind energy is affordable is a complete fable. As a lifelong blue-water sailor I will attest to the reality of the outdated seadog’s maxim, which is “The wind is unfastened … however the whole thing else prices cash”.

Plus the greed issue, in fact …

Let’s get started with the preliminary prices. The development and set up of the wind farm price $350 million. The transmission line from Block Island to the mainland used to be every other $114 million, paid for one at a time by way of the mainland ratepayers.

Then it’s a must to upload in “O&M”, operation and upkeep prices, that are about $48,000 in step with megawatt in step with yr for offshore wind, or about $290,000 in step with yr at Block Island. At a mean of 28.6 cents/kWh over the following ten years, energy gross sales will web about $26 million in step with yr … so the corporate proudly owning the wind farm received’t even make a benefit till 13+ years down the road … and that’s no longer counting the “oops” issue.

What’s the “oops” issue? Smartly, it’s surprising repairs, or a wind turbine that will get destroyed in a typhoon, or, smartly, one thing like the next:

Oops … along with paying $114 million for the transmission cable within the first position, the deficient Rhode Island ratepayers also are at the hook for a portion of the $31 megabucks to pay to re-bury the ability cable that were given uncovered by way of waves, wind, and currents. And so as to add insult to harm, the homeowners are announcing it’s going to price greater than the unique estimate of $31 million to mend it … double oops.

And the place does the greed issue have compatibility in? Once more from the Rhode Island “Windfall Magazine”:

Nationwide Grid reaps $46M in extra earnings from RI wind surcharge

PROVIDENCE: Greater than a decade in the past, when policymakers put Rhode Island at the trail to web hosting the primary offshore wind farm within the country, they made a cut price. They knew that energy from the Block Island Wind Farm can be pricey however have been keen to pay the fee within the hopes that the mission would spur introduction of a brand new clean-energy trade within the state.

What they didn’t cut price for used to be that the wind farm would turn out to be a gold mine for an calories corporate that already had a dominant presence in Rhode Island: Nationwide Grid, the principle electrical software within the state and the landlord of the 20-mile undersea transmission cable that brings energy generated by way of the mission from a Block Island substation to the mainland energy grid.

Within the 4 years for the reason that 5 wind generators went into operation, Nationwide Grid has made $46 million in extra earnings from turning in electrical energy in the course of the cable, consistent with filings by way of the software according to questions by way of state regulators. That’s cash entering Nationwide Grid on most sensible of what used to be estimated for operations and upkeep of the cable, taxes on it, or even how a lot the corporate calculated it had to repay its set up and building prices through the years whilst nonetheless incomes an affordable benefit. And it’s cash paid completely by way of Rhode Islanders thru a surcharge on their electrical expenses.

What’s extra, although a significant portion of the cash used to be designated for operations and upkeep of the cable, Nationwide Grid by no means set the earnings apart in a reserve fund. So when the corporate agreed closing yr to rebury a part of the cable after it turned into uncovered by way of waves, Nationwide Grid determined to capitalize the $31 million in maintenance. That driven the full price of the transmission mission as much as greater than $145 million, and, because of this, the corporate is ready to make electrical shoppers pay much more for the cable’s use. Since the surcharge is in response to the price of the cable, the velocity is scheduled to extend in Might, necessarily rewarding Nationwide Grid with more cash for solving an issue that state coastal regulators, lengthy sooner than building started, warned may get up. In the meantime Ørsted, the Danish corporate that owns the wind farm and the portion of the cable that runs from the generators to the Block Island substation, is paying out of pocket for its percentage of the reburial.

And I haven’t even gotten to the decommissioning prices for when the generators die, and so they need to be got rid of from manner out in the course of the sea … oops.

So there you’ve it, people—affordable, clear, inexperienced, affordable offshore wind. What’s to not like?

My easiest to all, even the fast-dwindling choice of deficient benighted people who nonetheless imagine that the solar and wind can energy the planet …

w.

Da Standard: PLEASE QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU ARE DISCUSSING. I will and am glad to shield what I wrote. I will’t shield what you suppose I supposed once I wrote it.

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