For the global renewable energy transition to work, hundreds of thousands of steel wind towers, monopiles and nacelle’s need to be built. The good news is, the iron is there and currently relatively cheap.
Weight of a large offshore wind turbine:
Rule of thumb 5 MW offshore wind turbine steel requirements: 300 + 2200 + 400 = 2900 ton
One million 5 MW offshore wind turbines require 2.9 billion ton or 88% annual global steel production.
Total world electricity consumption was 19,504 TWh in 2013. [source]
Annual electricity production 5 MW offshore ind turbine: 15 million kWh or 15 GWh
In other words: with 1.3 million offshore 5 MW wind turbines you have your global 2013 electricity consumption covered, if you ignore for a moment aspects like storage. And this time entirely fossil free, which was the purpose of the operation. But this ‘back-of-an-envelope’ exercise should give you an idea of the scale of the challenge.
Offshore wind turbine monopile production from steel plate.
[wikipedia.org] – World Solar Challenge
[worldsolarchallenge.org] – Results “Challenger Class”:
[worldsolarchallenge.org] – Results “Cruiser Class”
What we love about the project are the video and music, but that’s about it.
Last year we reported about an Australian company promoting the design of a solar downdraft wind tower and expressed our skepticism regarding the energy efficiency of the project:
[deepresource] – Solar Downdraft Wind Tower Planned in Arizona
To our amazement, Environmission reported that Texas agreed to invest 1 million $ in the undertaking.
[enviromission.com.au] – Texas Solar Tower Development Agreement US$ Banked
Furthermore, India seems to be interested as well:
[cleantechnica.com] – EnviroMission Reports Progress On The First Solar Chimney In India
[wiki2.org] – Solar updraft tower
Gepubliceerd op 24 mrt. 2015
This 1 MW hybrid solar-diesel plant was delivered, unpacked and fully operational in one week. The Australian Renewable Energy Agency supported Laing O’Rourke to develop this innovative new approach to off-grid power. [more]
Editor: interesting to note what a relatively small area (ca. 15 m * 70 m) you need to generate 1 MW (peak), sufficient to power a few hundred-thousand households. There are absolutely no physical constraints that will stop villages world-wide from having these kind of arrays installed next to them.
Today, even in the least developed areas in Africa, most people use a mobile phone, a development that took 20 years. It is not a big stretch to image that someday, every person will have a few solar panels per capita installed, to cover the most ‘basic’ power needs (lights, WiFi and tablets replacing radio/television, mobile phones, fridge, water pump).
A solution could be that once the US empire is dismantled, Paris-Berlin-Moscow and China craft a global development plan, where both ‘divide the underdeveloped world’ between them and Europe and China ‘adopt’ countries on a voluntary basis (colonialism ultra-lite), where Europe and China can exploit local resources and implement a population limitation program, in exchange for real goods (bicycles, building materials, pumps, solar panels, consumer IT), not money that ends up in the wrong hands anyway.
Map from 1818 of ‘New Holland‘ as it was known at the time, even to the British, until at least 1824. Nobody was really that much interested in this vast empty continent, witnessed by the fact that the British deemed it just good enough to make a penal colony out of it. Australia (7.7 m km2) is comparable in size to China (9.5 m km2), but inhabited by merely 23 million people (China 1300 million), facts that likely did not escape the attention of Chinese geostrategists.
John Malcolm Fraser (84) is one of the most senior people Australia can come up with. This distinguished gentleman has just published a long ground-breaking article, in which he advises Australia to distance itself from the United States.
Malcolm Fraser (born 21 May 1930) is a former Australian Liberal Party politician who was the 22nd Prime Minister of Australia. He came to power in 1975 through the dismissal of the Whitlam Labor government, in which he played a key role. After three election victories, he was defeated by Bob Hawke in the 1983 election and ended his career alienated from his own party.
Wikipedia: “Fraser… was educated at Glamorgan and Melbourne Grammar School, before completing a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Magdalen College, Oxford, in 1952. At Oxford, Fraser was a classmate and friend of future Canadian cabinet minister and Prime Minister John Turner.” Editor: Fraser (and Turner) were the Australian resp. Canadian servants of the British empire, before Australia and Canada morphed into staunch satellites of the US empire, Anglosphere, the embryonic NWO, the Judaic State or whatever you want to call it.
A few quotes from Fraser’s article:
IT IS time for Australia to end its strategic dependence on the United States. The relationship with America, which has long been regarded as beneficial, has now become dangerous to Australia’s future. We have effectively ceded to America the ability to decide when Australia goes to war…
The idea of American exceptionalism is contrary to Australia’s sense of egalitarianism…
… at the moment, because of U.S. military installations in Australia, if America goes to war in the Pacific, it will take us to war as well—without an independent decision by Australia. Finally, under current circumstances, in any major contest in the Pacific, our relationship with America would make us a strategic target for America’s enemies…
The idea of American exceptionalism, which has always been present in the United States, has gone far beyond all comprehension in the years of America’s absolute supremacy…
Our task is not to embrace America, but to preserve ourselves from its reckless overreach…
Wow, what a candid admission, typical made by very senior politicians, with one leg in the grave. The sort of admission secret service expert and former Italian president Francesco Cossiga made when he said in 2007 in the largest Italian newspaper that 9/11 had been carried out by the Mossad and CIA, when he was 79 and was suffering from terminal cancer. Or US congressman Paul Findley, who in 2007 at the age of 86, claimed that the US was basically an Israeli colony. Courageous people are few, but do exist.
The article is a long read. But the essence is that Fraser accuses the US to be not interested in world peace and as such is a threat to all others. Fraser hints that the West is at least as guilty for the Ukrainian mess as is Russia and blames NATO of breaking its promise to Russia not to expand eastwards. Fraser says that basically Russia had no choice but to merge with Crimea, because of the Russian military facilities there. But Fraser is a little naive if he thinks that the current mess in Ukraine is the result of ‘failure of US diplomacy’, instead of what it really is: a naked, raw US power grab.
Fraser does not believe in a western defeat of the Islamic State nor that the West has any chance of long term success in Afghanistan. Furthermore, Fraser is afraid that an assertive nationalist and militarist Japan, possibly armed with long-range nuclear weapons in the near future, could become a catalyst for war between the US and China, now that the US has sided with Japan in the Chinese-Japanese dispute over the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands.
Fraser concludes that since the US could not win the conflict with Vietnam, it almost certainly can’t win a military conflict with China. And since Australia is allied to the US, Australia would become the defeated ally of a defeated superpower, without any friends in the region. In 1991, Australia was not as tightly integrated with the US as it is now, a development that Fraser deplores and was supported by both major Australian political parties.
Editor: as always, you need to read between the lines of what this Australian old political fox is saying. Fraser is clearly afraid of China. He does not believe in a second American Century. He fears that the United States will likely loose a military confrontation with China, if push comes to shove. And that by implication, the Australian Lebensraum automatically would become a tasty prey for the victorious Chinese superpower. And that Euro-Siberia, if that were to happen, won’t lift a finger to protect Australia (he is correct, they won’t).
Australia’s cards are very weak. Fraser admits that Australia has no friends, apart from the United States and yet pleads for Australia to distance itself from the only friend Australia has. And Euro-Siberia will be relieved to see Australia as a safety valve for Chinese expansionism, if any. Better Australia than Siberia, you hear them think.
[nationalinterest.org] – America: Australia’s Dangerous Ally
Published on Jul 12, 2013. The press presentation of Nuon Solar Team’s seventh solar car. The first four-wheeled Nuna, Nuna7.
The ‘Nuna7’ completed the 3000 km in 33 hours, that is an average speed of 90.7 kmh! The maximum speed recorded btw was 185 kmh. So far the Nuon Solar team participated seven times, won five times and became second twice.
First day: 566 km.
Key figures: 3000 km, ca. 50 hours driving, solar peak power ca 1000 Watt, 5 kWh storage (5 hours driving), max. speed 100 km/h, 4 passengers. Who needs fossil fuel (in Australia or Africa)!?
Entire day driven with 4 people. Average speed 97 km/h.
All updates here.
The Stella uses Marand in-wheel motors because of their superior efficiency. Weight of Stella is 380 kg, and battery capacity is 15 kWh.
Brisbane company Linc Energy recently released two reports, based on drilling and seismic exploration, estimating the amount of oil in the as yet untapped Arckaringa Basin surrounding Coober Pedy ranging from 3.5 billion to 233 billion barrels of oil.
Richard Heinberg has dedicated his life to understanding the notion of ‘The End of Economic Growth’, why it is upon us and how humanity should best prepare and recalibrate itself for life in world beyond peak oil. Richard gave this fascinating in-depth public lecture at the University of South Australia while promoting his book ‘The End of Growth’ on September 25th, 2012… In this one hour presentation, Richard Heinberg explains the close link between the resource/environment and the social/economic components of the present disintegration. As a journalist with a keen understanding of science and maths he does it better, more comprehensively and more clearly than most others. While the conventional wisdom is that we must get ‘the economy’ growing again, Heinberg shows that not only is this the wrong strategy, it is actually making the situation worse and more intractable.
Australian energy provider Origin Energy has signed its largest ever wind power purchase agreement. The company plans to take all the power generated by a 90-turbine wind farm near Snowtown (100 miles from Adelaide) that will have an installed capacity of 270 megawatts (MW). Operations expected to begin in two years. Last year, Australia had 1188 wind turbines in 57 operating wind farms. Even so, another 2,000 to 3,000 wind turbines would have to be built to meet Australia’s mandatory renewable energy target of 20 per cent by 2020.