My name is Fred and I am a gay conservative living in Ottawa. This blog supports limited government, the right of the State of Israel to live in peace and security, and tries to expose the threat to us all from cultural relativism, post-modernism, and radical Islam. I am also the founder of the Free Thinking Film Society in Ottawa (

Sunday, November 09, 2008

More evidence wind power sucks....

Get this - this is a multi-billion dollar plan for an electric plant as a backup to wind power!!!!
A man-made island housing a hydroelectric plant and generating enough electricity to supply two million Dutch homes is planned for the North Sea by 2020.

It would act as back-up to wind farms by ensuring that electricity is still generated when the wind drops and would provide extra peak-time capacity. If successful, similar islands could be be built to supply other countries, especially those such as Britain that will increasingly come to depend on wind energy. The proposed site, called energy island, is expected to be built 15-20 miles (24-32km) off the Dutch coast, in waters about 20m (65ft) deep, and will be 3.7 miles (6km) long and up to 2.5 miles (4km) across.

Huge dykes would be constructed to hold back the sea and the centre of the island would be dug down to 40 metres (130ft) below sea level. Pipes in dykes would allow sea water to pour in, generating electricity in the same way as some dams. The water would then be pumped out. The electricity generated by the water pouring in is matched or exceeded by that needed to pump it out. The island should make a profit because it consumes electricity at a cheaper rate than it generates it.

Kema, the Dutch company behind the €3-3.5 billion (£2.5 billion) plan, is carrying out a feasibility study to pinpoint the best location. The Dutch Government is among potential investors. The project with a capacity of 1,500MW - similar to two large power plants - should help the Netherlands to reach its renewable energy target and its aim of reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 30 per cent by 2020.
All this for a backup power plant!


Anonymous Wayne Johnston said...

I think you - and the original article - are mistaken. This is not a backup plant, but a storage plant.

Wind power is variable. The wind doesn't always blow when you want it and blows when you don't need it. The solution is to store electricity for when you need it. However, electricity is hard to store as electricity. It must be converted into something else.

This plant is a way to store electricity as the energy of water running downhill. When electricity is needed, they will generate it by letting water fall from sea level into the plant. When there is surplus electricity (as on a windy night), they will use it to pump the water back uphill.

This is an established technique. There's a plant that does this on the American side of the Niagara River north of Buffalo that's been in operation for many years. I saw another in Croatia this summer, running up from a river valley into the coastal mountains.

The use of the sea in this manner is what's innovative.

11:20 PM  

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