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Ontario's new problem: too much power

Discussion in 'Energy, Environment, and Policy' started by Doug_G, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    #1 Doug_G, Jan 20, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2011
  2. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    I'm weary of all the B.S. & buncombe with this issue...I think it's time to look for a solution to pull my home off of the grid.
     
  3. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Actually I don't think the article is BS. I support green energy but there are some real technical problems here.

    I think the government is botching the green energy transition. They have made the incentives really high; depending on the size of your facility, they will pay 10X as much for solar energy as what they sell electricity for. Predictably enough there is a huge build-out of green energy in process. That's great, but they've done nothing to prepare the grid for this. I don't think they were expecting the uptake to be so quick. Duh.

    Other faults with their plans include:

    1. Wind power generates energy on its own schedule, and with the current rules they don't allow Ontario Hydro to NOT buy the power if they have too much capacity online. As a result, they have to PAY other utilities to take the power from them. Yes, you read that correctly; if there is too much capacity the price of the power goes negative. Nuclear plants provide base generation that can't be ramped up and down based on demand, and we have a lot of nuclear here.

    2. They set different incentives for solar, large solar, and wind power. Why does wind get 1/3 the incentive of solar? Why is the government deciding that solar is better than wind (does that even make sense at Canada's latitude?). Why don't they have any incentive for other types of green energy -- how about small-scale hydro plants? Shouldn't they set an incentive for qualifying green energy and let the free market decide which technology is best?

    3. So many people are getting on board that they're going to end up having to triple electricity rates in Ontario. That will create a voter backlash that will likely get the program trashed.
     
  4. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    Sorry Doug, I should have clarified...the B.S. is not the article but the manner in which the Provincial government has (mis)handled this issue (exactly as you pointed out)...my desire is to source out an adaquate power solution thus circumventing grid & political issues altogether.


     
  5. qwk

    qwk Model S P2681

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    Isn't too much energy sort of the same thing as too much money? Sounds like their business plan is FUBR.
     
  6. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Bussiness plan??? I don't think it could be called that.

    Smart meters are also causing a consumer backlash, because the savings at night are meager, whereas the increase in cost during the day is significant. Fortunately they haven't turned mine on yet. (Despite that I'm being really nice to Ontario Hydro and charging my Tesla in the wee hours of the morning.)
     
  7. qwk

    qwk Model S P2681

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    Are the utility companies public in Ontario?
     
  8. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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  9. Nik

    Nik Dreaming no more :-(

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    Here's a lower-cost way to store energy from intermittant sources like PVs
    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20928014.800-power-of-cool-liquid-air-to-store-clean-energy.html
    (New scientist, 28/2/11)
    Standing in a container full of pipes and valves, wearing a hard hat and sturdy boots, we gaze at a dull grey panel with green and red on and off switches.

    "This panel means we're connected to the grid," says my companion Rob Morgan, grinning proudly. "To an engineer, this is really exciting."

    We are on an industrial estate in Slough in the UK, on the grounds of a 100-megawatt biomass plant owned by energy firm Scottish and Southern. But what we've come to see is the small cluster of containers and a gleaming white liquid nitrogen tank tucked away in one corner of the site. Here Morgan, chief engineer at Highview Power Storage, London, and his colleagues have been running a pilot plant designed to store potential energy in the form of liquid air. [Continues]
     
  10. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    Thanks Nik...cool article..."liquid air," who'da thunk it!

    Not quite sure but a 100 megawatt supply might exceed my demand...:biggrin::wink:
     
  11. Nik

    Nik Dreaming no more :-(

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    Not if you drive fast enough :scared:
     
  12. dpeilow

    dpeilow Moderator

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  13. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    They should just sell it to Praxair. Lots of uses for LN2.
     
  14. jcstp

    jcstp Active Member

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  15. AndrewBissell

    AndrewBissell Member

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    MDI "the air car company" has been around the block more than a few times. The problem is that the round trip energy efficiency via compressed air is really poor as far as I know.
     

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