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Solar Power System in Nevada Desert Reaches Grid Parity


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Nuclear power is not only expensive, it's potentially the most insidious vehicle of climate change. Granted, it's not yet implicated in today's problems but its widespread use will most surely destro

In one of my previous posts here I talked about the Finnish Olkiluoto 3 (OL3) reactor. Here are some fresh updated news on it:

TVO seeks EUR 2.4 billion in damages for Olkiluoto nuclear reactor delays

The Finnish nuclear power company Teollisuuden Voima (TVO) is seeking damages of EUR 2,400 million from the consortium of Areva and Siemens for delays in the construction of Finland's fifth nuclear reactor in Olkiluoto.

The matter was noted in an appendix to the Siemens interim figures published on Tuesday.

Areva and Siemens reported some time ago that the nuclear reactor project would be completed 38 months behind schedule, in 2012.

According to the contract signed with TVO, the reactor was to have been ready for commissioning in 2009.

TVO signed an agreement for the third Olkiluoto plant in December 2003. The price of the reactor was in excess of EUR 3 billion, making it among Finland's largest-ever individual industrial investments.

Wow, agreement was 2003, so lets see 2004,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12. That's nine years....... if it does get completed then,,,,

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See my previous post. Response? :-)

It's coming! Don't worry, I am just a bit busy right now. :cute:

Wow, agreement was 2003, so lets see 2004,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12. That's nine years....... if it does get completed then,,,,

Yes! And I even doubt it will be finished in 2012. This is how the construction site looked like in December 2008:

And remember, this is just another reactor, not a fullblown nuclear plant.

Schedule and budget overruns are not unique to the nuclear industry - in fact, they seem to be the norm in the majority of state-sponsored projects!

Ah come on! You can do better than that. :P

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Do we have that much time?

See. There you nailed it. This is the main problem when it comes to todays energy sources. We simply rely too much on fossil fuels, such as oil and coal, which will of course take some time to move away from. But unfortunately time is not on our side anymore. If we want to avoid doomsday scenarios when it comes to climate change we must act fast. And that means nuclear energy cant be something we invest our time and money in. Because nuclear energy is too expensive and takes too long to build. It doesnt matter if nuclear energy is the safest form of energy available (ha!) or the most dangerous form of energy on planet earth, we simply dont have the time needed for nuclear energy.

And do you know what percentage of Sweden's land area would need to be dedicated to producing renewable energy in order to completely meet the country's needs?

Sweden already get nearly half of its energy from renewable energy. Besides the windfarm being built near Sölvesborg there are two other windfarms in the planning stage that can supply as much energy as a nuclear plant for a cheaper cost, much faster and while creating thousands of new green jobs.

Something which, if you were to do it in any meaningful way, would result in you being voted out of office pretty damned quickly!

Maybe. Maybe not. People want to see actions being taken against climate change and you can do a lot by just effecting the use of electricity without taking away people their luxury.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Nuclear power is not only expensive, it's potentially the most insidious vehicle of climate change. Granted, it's not yet implicated in today's problems but its widespread use will most surely destroy the earth. Don't forget that there is no know means of eliminating the extremely radioactive waste - waste that is toxic to all know forms of life. Increase the number of nuclear power plants and the intensity of their use and it'll be only a matter of time before we irradiate the entire planet.

One another note: we're being sidetracked again by the big energy. Solar energy is simply the ultimate green energy so only two primary issues need to be addressed when it comes to our energy needs; 1- who owns/controls it, and 2- how cheap is it. The two are the primary objectives of big energy giants and they do their best to distract us from this truth.

To the point of how much space it takes to generate sufficient power - there is no need to use any more space than the buildings we already have. In most cities, buildings and parking lots make up the major use of land space. simply requiring these building to be outfitted with solar panels and tied into the grid would provide sufficient energy for most of a city. Big energy is wasteful in almost every aspect. They must necessarily use extra space for solar because they must over-generate in order to compensate for the waste of transmission lines and must waste energy because they generate based on anticipated rather than actual need.

On the other hand, when we own our own solar energy generation system we can make energy more cheaply. Individuals can be encouraged to outfit their own buildings with solar power at the same cost as a few years of energy bills from their friendly neighborhood utility and after that they'd pay only minor dollars to upkeep their system. The potential cost saving is staggering when you consider the lifespan of most buildings and most people. For most of our 40-60 years of adult life we could be living nearly cost free for clean green solar energy. How's that for cheap energy with no added environmental stress from land use or big energy companies!

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Individuals can be encouraged to outfit their own buildings with solar power at the same cost as a few years of energy bills from their friendly neighborhood utility and after that they'd pay only minor dollars to upkeep their system.

And therein lies the first issue. These days, people do not have that kind of money laying around. Most governments(or better yet the utilities) would do well to create a standardized program and then finance the construction. They can draw unused power to sell to those that choose not to invest.

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>>To the point of how much space it takes to generate sufficient power - there is no need to use any more space than the buildings we already have.<<

No, not so. In some parts of the world it may be possible to generate enough energy to meet a cities energy needs by covering every available square inch of it with solar panels, but in other parts of the world it certainly isn't. And how much of an environmental impact would manufacturing/installing such an enormous number of solar panels have?

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  • 2 weeks later...

And therein lies the first issue. These days, people do not have that kind of money laying around. Most governments(or better yet the utilities) would do well to create a standardized program and then finance the construction. They can draw unused power to sell to those that choose not to invest.

I must say I am a bit sceptical to mounting solar panels on every house. Especially if you live up in northern parts where you dont get much sun. Im not saying it doesnt work. I just think that with todays prices on solar systems its a bit too expensive. Instead I think we in Europe should invest in a new renewable energy supergrid across all of the EU. I've written about a proposed supergrid on Green Blog:

Scientists from the EU are planning for a new supergrid between the different EU member states. This new supergrid will be built using new DC (HVDC) lines which are perfect for transmissions of energy over long distances. The supergrid could allow Denmark and the UK to export wind energy and Iceland to export geothermal energy at times when production exceeds demand to other EU member states.

But the supergrids main purpose would be to transmit renewable solar energy from the Saharan desert to Europe. The scientists want to build a series of huge solar farms in the Saharan desert and connect them to the supergrid.

I think this would be the best and most cost-effective way. What are your thoughts about this?

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>>The scientists want to build a series of huge solar farms in the Saharan desert and connect them to the supergrid.<<

That'll be pretty.

Yes. And no one can claim that it would be too expensive now that we are bailing out failed auto companies and banks.

In other nuclear news: Al Gore says that nuclear power is not the answer to our energy and climate crisis

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  • 1 month later...

Hmm.. no one person should be 'the ultimate answer to everything...'

So Al Gore is just another person too...

I do agree that nuclear is not the answer to everything though!!

Mountainhiker, do you have any specific points to point out or what?

(Or do you work for the nuclear industry too? ;))

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Hmm.. no one person should be 'the ultimate answer to everything...'

So Al Gore is just another person too...

I do agree that nuclear is not the answer to everything though!!

Mountainhiker, do you have any specific points to point out or what?

(Or do you work for the nuclear industry too? ;) )

Nah I just think Mountainhiker doesn't like democrats in general! :lol:

But I think it's sad that he saying such bad things about (Nobel prize winner!) Al Gore. No matter if you are left or right in the political sphere you have to give credit to Al Gore and the work he has done so far for raising awareness for climate change. I would even go so far as saying Gore is the smartest politician in the USA. Gore would have been a great President if Bush and the other fascists didn't steal the election from Gore.

Back on topic: James Lovelock, a strong proponent for nuclear energy, recently said this about nuclear energy:

"It is a way for the UK to solve its energy problems, but it is not a global cure for climate change."

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  • 2 months later...

The nuclear ‘renaissance’? It’s never gonna happen...

According to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology: [F]igures, say the authors of [a new Massachusetts Institute of Technology] report, an update on a similar report in 2003, mean that "even if all the announced plans for new nuclear power plant construction are realized, the total will be well behind that needed for reaching a thousand gigawatts of new capacity worldwide by 2050."

One thousand gigawatts is the number the M.I.T. professors estimated would be needed to ensure that nuclear power provided 20 percent of global electricity needs as well as cut emissions of greenhouse gases from power plants. In the U.S., the number would be jumping from 100 to 300 gigawatts of nuclear-sourced electricity by 2050.

Read the rest

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In an earlier post here in this topic I wrote that one reason against nuclear energy was the increasing temperatures:

"And as the planet is warming up, is nuclear really a smart move?: Thirsty Nukes Can't Take the Heat and Climate change puts nuclear energy into hot water "

Now look at this:

France imports UK electricity as plants shut

France is being forced to import electricity from Britain to cope with a summer heatwave that has helped to put a third of its nuclear power stations out of action.

READ IT: http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/utilities/article6626811.ece

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In an earlier post here in this topic I wrote that one reason against nuclear energy was the increasing temperatures:

"And as the planet is warming up, is nuclear really a smart move?: Thirsty Nukes Can't Take the Heat and Climate change puts nuclear energy into hot water "

Now look at this:

France imports UK electricity as plants shut

France is being forced to import electricity from Britain to cope with a summer heatwave that has helped to put a third of its nuclear power stations out of action.

READ IT: http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/utilities/article6626811.ece

That's simply a matter of design.

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