15 thoughts on “Another small step forward.

  1. And Texas again takes a giant leap backwards with insufficient electric power due to its fragmented and non-connected (to the grid) status. Plus higher rates.

    “Eyes on Texas” should warn us about the problem of going it all alone and not regulating their market.

    Oh well, probably BLM’s fault anyway.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Is your comment based on some specifics of this project or just your usual knee jerk response? The project is the work of NextEra Energy Resources – a subsidiary of a for profit public company currently paying a healthy dividend so maybe those responsible for paying those dividends have a different view of the potential than you do?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It will be significantly higher than had our power come from combined cycle natural gas while nuclear is built up.

        Remember that fossil fuel backup is necessary for nighttime and cloudy days and that expensive capacity must then sit idle when the sun shines.

        Wste is waste.

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        1. The point of reference is not some theoretical future with grave political problems – nuclear. The point of reference is reality and in reality the people investing in this project believe it will be profitable. Or they would not have done it.

          And assuming that we currently have capacity sufficient to the needs, then my original statement is spot on. That EXISTING capacity can be run at lower levels using less fuel (and extending its life) while this project is feeding power to the grid. At night or on cloudy days we can revert to what we are doing now.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. “Again any venture can be profitable if the government forces you to buy.”

            Maybe you know something that I don’t but this project does not seem to be based on the government forcing anyone to do anything. It seems to me that it stands on its own because solar technology allows the company to sell energy almost entirely free of variable costs for decades.

            Liked by 1 person

  2. So to gain some perspective, 900 acres is abt 1.5 sq miles. This project claims to provide enough energy for 20k homes. Not buying it but I’ll give it 15k under perfect conditions. Cheaspeake has almost 100k homes, so to “power” them you would need abt 11 sq miles of expensive panels. Businesses use much more so conservatively you would need say 33 sq miles of expensive panels to power a rural sparsly populated county with a little space…while the sun shines…under non-peak conditions. Solar panel module failure rates are climbing too so replacement is a factor. So much for the food or ethanol that 33 sq miles of farm land would have produced. Now, what is northern Va supposed to do with zero open space to build solar farms the size of all of hampton roads to meet its minimal energy needs…when the sun shines…then you get to replace it all in 25 years, the solar panel life span. Then you still need reliable base load to power the grid.

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    1. All valid points. I am pretty sure that the for-profit company that is making this particular investment considered the relevant ones before committing.

      No one is claiming that solar power alone is the solution to all power needs everywhere but as its economics and capabilities continue to improve there will be more places where this kind of investment makes sense. The recently announced massive project in the Australian outback is an example of what is increasingly possible.

      https://www.sciencealert.com/world-s-largest-solar-farm-to-pipe-power-internationally-from-australia-under-the-sea

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The result is massively expensive electricity that can’t even maintain base load which is the point. But you like unreliable wildly expensive power that takes up massive acreage so we can pay $2k monthly electric bills and still need candles and fire wood while being reliant on China for the precious metals needed for the batteries?

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