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Old 11-11-2014, 03:49 PM   #1
dharma
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Default Huge Solar Plant = Huge Failure

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since then the plant has not lived up to its clean energy promise. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the plant produced only about a quarter of the power it's supposed to, a disappointing 254,263 megawatt-hours of electricity from January through August, not the million megawatt-hours it promised.
And you get to pay for it!

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After already receiving a controversial $1.6 billion construction loan from U.S. taxpayers, the wealthy investors of a California solar power plant now want a $539 million federal grant to pay off their federal loan.

... The Ivanpah solar electric generating plant is owned by Google and renewable energy giant NRG, which are responsible for paying off their federal loan. If approved by the U.S. Treasury, the two corporations will not use their own money, but taxpayer cash to pay off 30 percent of the cost of their plant, but taxpayers will receive none of the millions in revenues the plant will generate over the next 30 years.
http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014...f-its-federal/

There is one thing the plant works well at, however: cooking birds and other flying creatures.

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What spans 1,600 hectares, cost $2.2 billion to build, and potentially fries hundreds of thousands of birds per year?
http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/1...rds-mid-flight

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Workers at Ivanapah power plant call the rapidly cooked birds "streamers" as they ignite in midair and plummet to the ground trailing smoke. Workers have counted the birds and Federal wildlife investigators say that on average there is one streamer every two minutes
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Old 11-11-2014, 06:32 PM   #2
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This actually gets worse. Did some more reading; here's a quote from one of the boards I frequent (h/t to "windfallwilly"):

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Studies on this power plant from MIT already casted it as a major high cost boondoggle many months ago. It guzzles huge amounts of water, also. And then they had to ask for permission to use more natural gas than originally claimed. It was bad from the get go and widely known...
Wait, what? Natural gas? Presumably to turn the turbine when the sun isn't out? Right. Though there may be more to it; from the same board, about a different project (h/t to "phiz83"):

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I'll bug you guys about a recent experience with wind power. I thought I was retired, but when buddies call up saying "please", then you find yourself in the Permian doing a microseis job and firing up a high effort 3D. I digress.

So I was near Ft Stockton and there are windmills everywhere. On a calm day I made the comment to the crew chief that the windmills were very efficient, seeing as how they were turning with no wind. He laughed and said "Shit, George. That's gas turning them mills".

It turns out that the credit for running the mills is such that it is worth turning them on gas. This is so ridiculous that I can actually believe our government would do it. But, being a scientist and doubting the word of one person, I asked around

It is true. Windmill operators can purchase NG on the open market, use that to turn something designed to be wind powered, and turn a profit. With NG so low, do these guys forego wind altogether? This just blows me away

We don't need to invent conspiracies when we are stuck with reality, because reality is stranger than fiction.

I have no words.
I do. Idiots.
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Old 11-11-2014, 06:46 PM   #3
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Deeper yet. It appears that, since wind power gets a considerable subsidy which natural gas generated power does not, many wind farms are now buying gas generators and selling the power as coming from a wind farm—which, technically, it does—and making a handsome profit.
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Old 02-19-2016, 04:18 AM   #4
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Officials at the Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project near Tonopah, NV claimed in 2015 that the 'streamers' are, for the most part, not birds. That's a lie. I can tell you from first hand knowledge that they are frying entire flocks of birds in midair daily, now.

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/03/0...ds-in-mid-air/

Here's an article extolling the virtues of the Crescent Dunes plant, from (can you believe this?) greentechmedia dotcom.

http://www.greentechmedia.com/articl...Crescent-Dunes

Scams perpetrated by conspiracy. Not a theory... reality. And the greenies lap it up. Yeah, idiots.
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Old 05-31-2017, 02:36 AM   #5
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Hope I'm not too far off topic here... been looking for types of materials used in solar panel manufacturing as I remember reading long ago that one important material was only found in one place on the planet. Want to identify the material and the place again.

In my searches I found this site: www.thoughtco.com

Enter the subject of your interest in the search window, say boron, and you will get links to lots of interesting stuff. Thought I’d share this here.

Still haven’t found the rare element used in solar panel manufacture yet. :-)
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Old 05-31-2017, 08:18 AM   #6
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Try this report Bob. Tellurium maybe?

The effect of solar power growth on metals demand
By Arielle Druyan
April 6, 2016

http://www.resourceinvestor.com/2016...-metals-demand
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Old 05-31-2017, 11:54 AM   #7
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Thanks Exodia. Interesting link, especially the author.
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Old 06-01-2017, 02:38 AM   #8
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Nope; not tellurium. From Wikipedia...

The principal source of tellurium is from anode sludges from the electrolytic refining of blister copper. It is a component of dusts from blast furnace refining of lead. Treatment of 1000 tons of copper ore typically yields one kilogram (2.2 pounds) of tellurium.
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