Two related acts of massive stupidity

Two events have recently occurred which are the direct responsibility of this nation’s illogical left.  Both events epitomize the disjointed, schizoid, concepts of the lunatic left’s idea of economy and energy solutions. 

For years now, we’ve been preached to about sustainability, energy independence, and more recently, in response to the recession, green jobs

Latitude shows me this; Utility may cut off power to solar plant  And, as many of you would already be aware, Anthony has covered this at WUWT; Fisker Recalling 239 Karma Plug-In Hybrids for Fire Hazard

This first is a story about a plant which is to make material for solar panels in Idaho.   Apparently, even before it gets fully operational, it can’t afford to pay its electricity bill!  The second is a story about an hybrid auto manufacturer having to recall every single one of the luxury hybrid model, the Karma.  Sustainability, energy independence, and green jobs.  What we see happening is ideas being pushed which have virtually no chance of success.  In Fisker’s case, there’s so many things wrong with what happened and why, a person could write a 500 page book and still not cover everything.  So, I’ll just highlight a few.  The Karma was made possible only through a U.S. govt. loan guarantee.  The bastards opened the production plant in Finland.  So, the charade of even creating U.S. jobs didn’t come into play.  The pricing for the Karma started at $103,000.  Apparently, while we’re closing electric generation plants, the loons thinks it’s a good idea for us to switch to electricity as a mode of transportation.

In the case of the solar plant, one would have thought they could just install some solar panels with the material they make and then have no worries, right?  Well, obviously when the company which makes the material knows it wouldn’t work, then we know we’re backing a loser.  Sustainability, energy independence, and green jobs.

There isn’t anything sustainable about solar production plants that can’t power themselves.  If solar panels can’t power plants which make them, how are they suppose to power the rest of the nation?  What is going to charge the hybrids?  What happens when we decrease the supply of electricity and increase the demand for electricity?  Any rational individual will tell you the costs will increase.  The disjointed, schizoid, lunatic left either don’t know this, or don’t care, or are intentionally causing harm to the U.S. economic base.  Given the statements of the president prior to his being elected, one must come to the conclusion these actions are intentional.  Anyone supporting these insane actions need to check where their loyalties lay.  These are your fellow citizens you’re harming.  This is our government that you’re bankrupting.  Your legacy will be on the equivalent to Judas and Nero. 

People want us to switch from cheap reliable electricity to green renewable electricity.  They also want us to switch from gasoline powered automobiles to electric powered vehicles.  Even if just one of those choices were viable, we certainly can’t do both.  If we’re going to engage in delusion fantasy, why stop there?  Why not fantasize about being powered from pink unicorn flatulence?  Surely that would give us energy independence!

How many green jobs are there in closed production plants?  There isn’t any.

No jobs equates to no wealth generation.  There isn’t any additional money and in private nor public sector.  We can’t afford to keep financing and underwriting insoluble ideas.  

We keep hearing from the loons that green technology is the future.  If this is the future, our future looks very dark.

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21 Responses to Two related acts of massive stupidity

  1. Mike Davis says:

    Here I have been working for two years to get a grant to develop a transportation system using Unicorn Flatulence and you found that the Pink ones produce the most energy per unit.
    I have almost got it, I just need ten billion dollars and to raise a herd of Pink Unicorns. The tipping point is just around the corner for this and I just know it could be viable in the next millennium if not sooner.
    I like the “Green Jobs” in America by opening an assembly plant in Finland, and Leonardo in backing the venture! I am surprised any vehicles made it to the street.

  2. Mike Davis says:

    The solar panel plant is a know issue. Solar panels require more energy to produce than they return during their useful lifespan. That means you can not use solar energy to produce solar panels.

    • Sorry Mike, that’s just not true, even given the worst possible analysis. Estimates vary from 1 to 15 years energy payback time, with most giving 2-4 years. This is a fair-minded overview:

      • … Although of course there is a kind of ‘cash flow’ issue so you do need external power to run the furnaces to start with. No idea what happened in this case.

      • suyts says:

        Paul, we should make the distinction between roof-mounted personal systems and the systems required for mass and industrial use. I believe your link deals only with roof mounted systems. And giving the information a quick glance, I’d question some of the assumptions, such as, “PV cells are estimated to have a lifespan of 25-30 years.” and some omissions of analysis, such as location dependent energy generation. Obviously, some locations, say Death Valley, PV would generate more electricity than say Spokane, Washington.

        This is a subject I’ve been looking at for some time now. One of the biggest problems I have in presenting an objective post on the subject is that I find most of the information presented is either horribly biased one way or the other or so fatally flawed that I’d be embarrassed to present it. The Energy Payback Time (EPT) is a rather simplistic view.

        When stripped of most ancillary considerations, the payback for home solar power looks pretty good. But, it starts to fall off the rails when the other considerations are tallied. I don’t buy the 25-30 year lifespan. But, it remains to be seen. Energy generation is great, but the timing of the generation is of great importance. For instance, obviously, solar only generates during the day. But, if you desire to utilize the generation during the evening, then storage must become part of the consideration. Further, conversion and inversion must be considered. Switching mechanisms and energy loss to inversion increases costs and payback immensely. Also, most often accompanied by solar generation is the desire to sell back to the grid. If this is utilized, then the equipment necessary to facilitate such a desire must also be entered into the equation.

        What I’m trying to say, is that the payback isn’t as straightforward as many would have us all to believe. I should probably write a post on this, and probably will in the near future. My perspective is this, if a 4.0 kW system would cost between $25,000 and $32,000 before incentives, then how are the paybacks being considered in terms of 2 or 3 years?

        • James,

          You’re undoubtedly right, it’s very complex, and I accept that (as the linked review says) some large-scale plants in some locations can fail to generate any net benefit at all. I just thought that Mike’s unqualified statement “Solar panels require more energy to produce than they return during their useful lifespan” needed a challenge – it certainly isn’t true for rooftop systems, even if you take the worst possible cases for performance and lifetime.

          Interesting things have been happening in the UK because of the government’s “feed in tariff” subsidy. Up until last month I think they were offering 43p (say 70c) per kWh on a 25 year index-linked contract for domestic 4kW systems. Needless to say, every roofer and electrician in the land suddenly became a “renewables engineer”, and there has been a mad rush to get them installed before the deadline (which has now itself been successfully challenged in court). I think the idea was to develop install capacity and push down the price through volume and competition – and it sounds from that article it might have done that, at least.

          I’m not quite sure what to make of it overall; certainly the economic cost wouldn’t work out without the subsidy, as you say, but does that necessarily mean the energy balance is flawed as well? These are relatively high-tech (to produce) and high labour (to install), and plenty of people are profit-taking, so their economic cost does not necessarily reflect their energy cost.

          Best wishes


        • suyts says:

          Wow, 70¢/kWh for 25 years?!?!?!? Paul, what is a typical rate for consumers?

          You’re right, of course, we can’t simply use costs as a proxy for energy because of profit. It would probably be a good thesis paper for an economics doctorate candidate to sort all of the true energy costs that would typically go into the various type of PV generation and use.

        • But note this little gravy train has had its brakes slammed on now, reducing to 21p/kWh for new projects (originally from last month but there has been a court challenge and it’s now all up in the air, but certainly from April)

        • suyts says:

          Going forward, it’ll be interesting to see which novel industries survive and which don’t.

      • Mike Davis says:

        Sorry Paul:
        You have been reading the promotion brochures for photo voltic.
        Because I was a real world trouble shooter and analyst I tend to have a more pessimistic view of claims for anything related to energy production, transport, storage, conversion, and use.
        I see it from the time it is still on the drawing board as a concept to end of useful life and do not take subsidies into account.
        I lived and worked in the real world.

  3. Latitude says:

    Other than the obvious….what I find amazing is who in their right mind lets someone get $2 million behind on their elec bill…..

    • suyts says:

      Apparently, the plant used quite a bit, but, it could also be a case of having to pay for construction of the power line to the plant. For instance, we have a railroad repair shop which is being built of the edge of our territory. In order for us to facilitate their requirements, we’re going to have to build a few miles of 3 phase line, and upgrade some equipment up line of them. So, we’ll share the costs of the upgrade with them.

      Plus, most utilities would bend over backwards to work with employers in the area. And, we’re a gullible lot. The utility business has been scammed by the loons for years.

  4. Latitude says:

    How one man got away with mass fraud by saying ‘trust me, it’s science’

    When news broke this year that Diederik Stapel, a prominent Dutch social psychologist, was faking his results on dozens of experiments, the fallout was swift, brutal and global.

    Science and Nature, the world’s top chroniclers of science, were forced to retract papers that had received wide popular attention, including one that seemed to link messiness with racism, because “disordered contexts (such as litter or a broken-up sidewalk and an abandoned bicycle) indeed promote stereotyping and discrimination.”

    As a result, some of Prof. Stapel’s junior colleagues lost their entire publication output; Tilburg University launched a criminal fraud case; Prof. Stapel himself returned his PhD and sought mental health care; and the entire field of social psychology — in which human behaviour is statistically analyzed — fell under a pall of suspicion.

    One of the great unanswered questions about the Stapel affair, however, is how he got away with such blatant number-fudging, especially in a discipline that claims to be chock full of intellectual safe-guards, from peer review to replication by competitive colleagues. How can proper science go so wrong?

    The answer, according to a growing number of statistical skeptics, is that without release of raw data and methodology, this kind of research amounts to little more than “‘trust me’ science,” in which intentional fraud and unintentional bias remain hidden behind the numbers. Only the illusion of significance remains.

    S. Stanley Young and Alan Karr of the US National Institute of Statistical sciences, for example, point to several shocking published claims that were not borne out by the data on which they were based, including coffee as a cause of pancreatic cancer, Type A personality causing heart attacks, and eating breakfast cereal increasing the odds that a woman will give birth to a boy.

    “The more startling the claim, the better,” they wrote in a recent issue of the journal Significance. “These results are published in peer-reviewed journals, and frequently make news headlines as well. They seem solid. They are based on observation, on scientific method, and on statistics. But something is going wrong. There is now enough evidence to say what many have long thought: that any claim coming from an observational study is most likely to be wrong – wrong in the sense that it will not replicate if tested rigorously.”


  5. Latitude says:

    We have five very expensive rocks, islands, down here that have been off the grid forever. They can never be on the grid.
    Not a one of them rely on solar or wind, they all have backup generators….
    If there was ever a place solar and wind would work, it would be there.

  6. nofreewind says:

    My brother is a CFO and he showed me the proposal to put a solar farm on his industrial building. It was a 182kW system. The output should be about 13% here in Penna. So it will produce
    182*.13*8760/12 = 172,000 kWhrs per month
    The costs was 1.2 million dollars. If we build the plant and take a 6% loan and amortize it at 25 yrs. We end up with 45 cents per kWhr.
    Another one. A big farm going up only 20 miles from my house. It’s rated at 3 MW and the newspaper says it will cost 18 millions dollars. Of course the newspaper wrote a glowing article, but forget to mention that works out to be 42 cents per kWhr.
    Here are two rooftop solar systems.
    #1 a 5.9kW rooftop system in Califronia of a friend of mine. It cost him $48,000. Amortized at 6% for 25 yrs that $310 per month, but the system only makes 5.9*.17*8760/12 = 732 kWhrs per month. That equals, what do you know, 42 cents again!
    Here is what my Penna accountant said last year about a clients solar plant.
    “The solar stuff is for real. I have a client getting a 67k solar panel system fro their home. 20k grant from the Feds and 20k grant from the State. Net cost to my client = 27k. Then they get a 30% Federal tax credit on the 27k = 18k net after tax cost. Then they get to sell some kilowatts back to the grid. It is for real.” (note: those State grants might be gone now with change in law – new GOP Governor)
    Here is what is fascinating. They keep saying solar is getting competitive, but every time i run the numbers I get about 40 cents/kWhr give or take 4 cents.
    Of course this is ALL WHOLESALE! With electricity probably being about 6-8 cents wholesale in most places. And of course, these solar plants don’t shut one single traditional energy plant down nor does one single utility worker get laid off. The opposite happens, more reports are written, there is an extra department and in the bigger farms, more transmission lines need to be laid down.
    Now here is a very, very interesting article. What solar energy cheaper now than before???

    • suyts says:

      That is interesting. Perhaps not so coincidentally, this parallels the CAGW alarmism. They’re saying the same things 25 years ago, as well. Wind is the one that amazes me. People pretend technological advances will break through and we’ll get a better return. What are we going to do? Build a better propeller? Both solar and wind are treated as some novel technology. Wind has been around for centuries and solar for decades.

  7. Pingback: Obama thanks his cronies for helping destroy U.S. economy! | suyts space

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