The Absurd Myth That Solar & Wind Power Will Solve Our Energy Predicament

As the U.S. and global oil industry continues to disintegrate under the weight increased debt and the Falling EROI – Energy Returned On Investment, analysts are still suggesting that solar and wind power are the solution to our energy problems.  While there are many good reasons solar and wind can’t provide us with the necessary energy needs in the future, the most import one is that it takes the burning of a massive amount of coal, natural gas, and oil to manufacture renewable energy sources.

Thus, solar and wind power are nothing more than fossil fuel derivatives.  However, if you are an individual that does not believe in the fossil fuel terminology, then we can substitute it by saying solar, and wind power are nothing more than coal-natgas-oil derivatives.  Either way, you get the point.

Without the burning of one hell of a lot of coal, natural gas and oil, solar PV panels and wind turbines could not exist.  Furthermore, it takes approximately 2,000 pounds of rare earth minerals to manufacture a 3-megawatt wind turbine.  Not only do these rare earth minerals have to be extracted from the earth, processed and refined, then they have to be transported to the manufacturing plants that make up the parts for the wind turbine.

Because most of the rare earth minerals come from China, few people realize the tremendous amount of pollution that comes as a result of the mining and processing of these metals.  You can search “China Rare Earth Mineral Pollution” and find all sorts of horror stories.  While the U.S. utility companies can slap themselves on the back by showing how GREEN they are by putting up Wind Power, just remember, a lot of poor slobs around the world only get to enjoy the pollution…. out of sight, out of mind.

So, without the burning of a lot of coal, natural gas, and oil, along with a great deal of pollution, solar and wind would not be possible.  Once we understand that simple principle, it should be easy to understand the ENERGY 1 +1 = 2.  And that its, if oil production is in big trouble, so will be solar and wind.  It’s really that simple.

The U.S. Still Installs One Heck Of A Lot More Natural Gas Power Plants Than Solar & Wind

If we forget for a moment that Solar and Wind are not really green energy sources and look at the data on proposed U.S. electric generating plants for 2018, the market still favors natural gas generation, TWO to ONE over solar and wind:

According to the EIA, U.S. Energy Information Agency’s Annual Electric Generator Report, new proposed electric generating plants for 2018 are two-thirds natural gas and one-third wind and solar.  The U.S. plans to add 65,000 megawatts (MW) of natural gas utility generation, 21,000 MW of wind power and 11,000 MW of solar this year.

Here is a map showing the proposed placement of the various electric generating plants for 2018:

You will notice a lot more RED DOTS.  That’s because they represent new natural gas generating plants, while new wind plants are GREEN and solar is in YELLOW.  The reason for the addition of so many new natural gas generating plants is due to the incredibly cheap natgas price.  While the market may believe that technology has made the production of Shale Gas inexpensive, let’s take a look at the free cash flow table from the third largest natural gas producer in the United States:

(Chart courtesy of GuruFocus.com, figures in $millions)

If we scan across the table (provided by Gurufocus.com) on the Free Cash Flow from Chesapeake Energy, you will notice a SEA OF RED.  Yes, that’s correct, your eyes aren’t playing games on you.  For the past 15 years, Chesapeake Energy hasn’t made a NICKEL drilling and producing shale gas.  Now, remember, Chesapeake was the United States second largest natural gas producer right behind ExxonMobil, but with the recent merger of EGT and Rice energy (2017), it is now the third largest producer.

Regardless, the notion that technology has allowed the production of cheap shale gas doesn’t seem to show up on the financials in the third largest shale gas producer in the country.  Okay, so you are wondering, what about EGT Energy?  First, let’s look at the chart that shows the top 10 natural gas producers in the United States:

Alright, there’s the proof.  EQT-Rice Energy now produces the most natural gas in the U.S., surpassing even the giant, ExxonMobil.  Well, if Chesapeake can’t make money in the number three spot producing shale gas, then what about the largest company?  Of course, economies of scale allows the bigger company to build more widgets and at a lower price, so EQT should be making money… RIGHT?

WRONG… LOL.  Here is the same Free Cash Flow table for EQT Energy:

(Chart courtesy of GuruFocus.com, figures in $millions)

EQT’s Free Cash Flow is not quite the entire SEA OF RED as was Chesapeake Energy because in 2006 it made $215 million in positive free cash flow.  However, it doesn’t look as if the merger helped bring on more profits for EQT as its free cash flow was a negative $1.1 billion in 2017.  In the past four years, EQT Energy enjoyed $5 billion in negative free cash flow.  For some reason, technology did not provide profits for the largest shale gas producer in the country.

By merging with Rice Energy, EQT’s debt ballooned to $7.3 billion last year up from $3.3 billion in 2016.  With the total debt for Chesapeake and EQT Energy of $17.3 billion, the combined interest expense for these two companies in 2017 was $630 million (Chesapeake, $427 million / EQT, $203 million).

If we can separate ourselves from the nonsense and lousy information regurgitated about the wonders of shale oil and gas by the mainstream media, then common sense analysis suggests that we are in serious trouble.

U.S. Solar PV Installation Growth Is Slowing Down

The growth rate of U.S. Solar PV installations will slow down considerably in 2018 compared to the previous years.  Solar PV installations in the U.S. was increasing by an average of nearly 30% per year from 2013 to 2015.  Then it doubled from 7,500 MW in 2015 to 15,128 MW in 2016.  However, Solar PV installations declined 30% in 2017:

The forecast for Solar PV growth in 2018 is only 3%.  This is certainly bad news for the solar industry because the United States would need to grow its solar PV installations by at least 250,000 MW a year for several decades to make a dent in coal and natural gas electric generation.

Please do not count on wind and solar to solve our energy predicament.  There is no PLAN B.  The only real option is one of managed DE-GROWTH.  However, there is no way this would work because there are too many individuals, parties and corporations only focused on making the almighty Dollar.  Which means… we will continue to press the accelerator down to the floor right up until the wheels fall off and the car careens over the cliff.

For those few who still don’t understand that solar and wind are not viable future energy solutions, please look at the final chart in this report:

I apologize for not updating the chart for 2017, but the data didn’t change all that much.  You will notice the RED and ORANGE smudges on the right-hand side of the graph represent the percentage of solar and geothermal energy consumption by the United States in 2016.  With coal, natural gas, oil, nuclear and biomass energy sources accounting for 95% of U.S. energy consumption, don’t count on wind and solar scaling up anytime soon to make a difference.

And, as U.S. shale oil production heads into the crapper, along with huge market downturn, don’t expect solar or wind power installations to increase in the future.  Once U.S. and global oil production head south for good, so will the production of solar and wind power installations.

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90 Comments on "The Absurd Myth That Solar & Wind Power Will Solve Our Energy Predicament"

  1. thanks for helping dispel the myth that solar and wind are any kind of solution.

    many people think we can mitigate the “Limits to Growth” with technology, but that is a fool’s errand we attempt at our own demise. as you said, the reality is that “magic green” intermittent energy capturing devices cannot exist without the underlying, unsustainable, fossil fuel powered, mining and manufacturing industrial infrastructure.

    i just finished a 35 year career designing, installing AND MAINTAINING solar electric systems and i can assure you they are neither “green” or “renewable”. most people promoting “clean, green” solar, have not lived with it long enough to experience the lifecycle costs. in my personal case, my oldest working module is from 1987. it is severely delaminated but still making usable power and is a part of my grid tied with battery backup system… BUT there is the issue of the mean time between failure of inverters which is around 5 to 7 years. batteries and charge controllers also have similar, finite lifetime realities. if i had to pay for someone to do the repairs, the system would never make enough money in reduced power bills (@ .17/kWh) to pay for the ongoing maintenance.

    so basically a typical solar electric system is a bunch of expensive, high tech, fossil fuel created equipment that every few years needs more expensive, high tech, fossil fuel created replacement parts to keep operational.

    another sad reality is solar retailers and installers make more money installing larger systems, which incentives waste. add to this is the fact that no one is interested in reducing their consumption or changing their behavior, so energy audits are a thing of the past. this means solar is basically about enabling waste and justifying non-negotiable lifestyles.

    that being said, while incredibly expensive to purchase and maintain (a clear net loss), i do enjoy the resiliency they provide our “lifeboat”. without solar pv, in a “no-grid” scenario, we would not be able to pump water for food growing operations. will it last? no, but it is a nice buffer.

    • Robert Happek | April 7, 2018 at 11:59 am | Reply

      Your assessment of the solar energy future, despite professional background in this area, is way too pessimistic. Properly designed inverters can easily last for 100 years (except for the electrolytic capacitors which may need to be replaced every 50 years). As science and technology progresses, the life span of panels will also reach 100 years. The solar systems of today should be compared with the model T built by Ford 100 years ago. In 100 years, solar systems will be infinitely better than the stuff installed today. Technology has not reached its end in development yet. Material science is only at its beginning. The only limits are the laws of Physics. One of which is the amount of sun energy hitting the earth. On a bright day, that is 1KW per square meter. That is a lot of electricity indeed. The problem is that it is only available during a few hours every day and that we have not learned yet to utilize more than 10% of that energy. But in time, huge improvements will be made. We are only at the beginning of that development.

      • Robert Happek

        The solar farm shown in the first video calls on mobile diesel-powered support platform to clean solar panels. The cycle is 7.5 days where it is understood the farm or the segment cleaned being taken off line. The small lake of diesel consumed in the process, supplies, what sustains humans, travel, wear and tear, administration, etc require far more energy to provide than what the farm has produced of useful energy since last cleaning cycle!

        Solar is promised a no-moving parts solution, but it pops up a diesel-powered moving parts platform.

        The 2nd video seconds on the comment shastatodd has made above.

        “….BUT there is the issue of the mean time between failure of inverters which is around 5 to 7 years. batteries and charge controllers also have similar, finite lifetime realities.”

        This comes no surprise as energy-producing devices cannot exceed in what they usefully produce the total energy put into constructing them. Having higher grade inverters installed (which means more energy put earlier in building them), the devices would have lasted for longer!

        One wishes humans call for not depleting finite fossil fuels reserves excessively instead of calling for creating more fossil fuels-dependent derivative technologies.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8rIXjOPZ8w

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=16rC650s69I&t=674s

    • William Goins | April 7, 2018 at 4:03 pm | Reply

      Your commentary is clearly borne from experience. There are many other remedies to reduce energy consumption before considering solar. For example, placing an aluminum thermal shield in the attic space, installing exhaust fans in the attic space, adding LED lighting, opening windows on hot days, installing energy efficient appliances and room fans on the ceilings. A internal “stand alone” wood furnace in cold climates also helps.

    • My roof top solar system inverter packed up after 6 years and the replacement was $2500 so my own experience concurs with your post

  2. Wind is QE for SA. Nothing more, nothing less.

  3. Arnold Ziffel | April 6, 2018 at 6:31 pm | Reply

    Just talked to a San Antonio’s CPS Director of Public Relations about our rising electricity expense. San Antonio is currently at 12% green energy and it targets 20% green energy by 2020 and +50% by 2030. When looking at their so called 2017 financial report, it conveniently leaves out the cost for KWH by energy source and the future financial obligations for purchasing its wind and solar from 3rd parties. Talk about obfuscation to hide costs. Fortunately San Antonio still owns a majority of the South Texas nuclear plant which has a very low cost per KWH.

  4. The take on all this for preppers is to assemble your system, test all components, have as much redundancy as you can afford. Disassemble, pack it up and put it in weatherproof, secure storage. My solar system consists of 500 watts of solar panels, 6 deep cycle batteries, two charge controllers and two 5,000 watt inverters. I plan on using them, if and when the time comes, only for radios (communication & information), tool battery charging and emergency medical lighting. Working on a micro hydro setup for a small creek we have and will have two micro hydro generators with pelton wheels, duplicate batteries, inverters and controllers.

    Other than for testing, these systems are not in use, are not evident to anyone visiting the property and will only be put in use when truly needed. Clearly not ever a replacement for our grid power but will buy 5 years of an easier transition when the SHTF. I buy power tool battery extras when they are on sale at Christmas (Ridgid and Ryobi were both 2 batteries for the price of one at Home Depot for the last two years).

    Buy for cash and stash.

    SteveW

    • Robert Happek | April 7, 2018 at 11:48 am | Reply

      SteveW, you should not buy battery equipment. Batteries have an effective life span of 5 – 10 year depending on usage and maintenance. I have plenty of battery tools, but I also have to buy frequently battery replacements. Buy a corded tool of high quality and invest in qulity extension cords. Extension cords if properly used can last up to 100 years. Corded tools are cheaper and of higher quality than the cordless variety.

      Regarding your solar system, the capacitors inside the inverters may go bad from not using it. you should periodically run the inverters for a short time in order to keep the electrolytic capacitors in a good condition.
      A car battery which is discharged for a long period of time can not be recharged again. A similar process takes place in electrolytic capacitors.

      Finally, do not worry about the grid. It will last longer than you and me.

      • Robert Happek,

        I love your line here,“do not worry about the grid. It will last longer than you and me.”

        That is a nice statement… but it would be nice if it were true. While the grid may last a long time, the society that uses it may disintegrate in the meanwhile. Thus, the service and electric generation via the GRID will become very problematic over the next 5, 10 & 20 years.

        steve

        • Robert Happek | April 7, 2018 at 4:55 pm | Reply

          Steve, I am sure that you are familiar with the so called Olduvai theory of Richard Duncan who predicted twenty years ago that the grid would slide into a permanent coma by 2012 – 2030. I got scared in 2001 when I read about it for the first time. Fortunately, it did not happen yet. And there are no signs that it will happen anytime soon. To the contrary, in Germany, wind generates more electricity than Germany can consume. So Germany is forced to dump this excess electricity in neighboring countries for free and pay their neighbors a fee for being able to do that. I agree, the grid may collapse in the long run, but that event will not happen for at least 50 more years.

          • DisappearingCulture | April 8, 2018 at 11:05 am |

            The grid is susceptible to solar events, lack of money for upgrades/maintenance, and sabotage. One of those will happen before 50 years.

  5. I can understand quite clearly the logic behind the fossil-fuel energy EROI equation required to produce, transport and maintain “green” energy. However I will have to state again that if you rule the world, you have a lot of tools in your arsenal to continue can-kicking.

    I think you have an emotional bias towards total collapse because you are heavily invested in PM’s. But you need to look at this from a “global management” POV. Imagine you owned every energy company in the world and all the banks and could coordinate these sources in unison with each other.

    I mentioned Venezuela’s oil as another source in the past to extend the game, and as we can see here China is moving in to switch Venezuela’s energy industry back on – right after Venezuela’s economy has been obliterated and they can buy their industry for very cheap.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-04-06/venezuelas-oil-sector-may-soon-have-new-owners

    With increasing inequality and integration of all pension funds into ETFs etc – we also have centralization of wealth on a level never seen before, and this wealth can be re-injected into the energy market to support the debt-burdens. As long as there is cash-flow the large numbers of debt doesn’t really matter.

    Also if we can get solar up to 5/10% of total energy supply, these alternative energy sources will take pressure off the demand for our traditional energy sources, allowing more can-kicking.

    With Solid state batteries heavily in development – they will provide another 30% more storage capacity than traditional batteries currently available. 30% is a massive increase when we’re talking global billions/trillions.

    As long as these alternate energy supplies provide a means to kick the can by reducing demand of fossil fuels, then they are doing their job.

    Economic fundamentals are becoming meaningless because they imply a completely free, manipulated, un-managed market. Which is not the case whatsoever. It is in fact the opposite – every little detail of this global economy is micromanaged and increasingly centralized.

  6. Steve, I love your blog. Can you please not abuse capitalization and emphasis so much? It reads like a 60s Marvel comic. Karl Denninger has another boomer blog I read despite similarly painful prose.

    The above article would be much, much better if every use of capitalization and bolding for emphasis were removed. Just lowercase all the capitalized words. Remove all non section headline bold. Only URLs should stand out in the text.

    Put a BLUF bullet point section up top with the key takeaways rather than litter the text with bolding and caps.

    My two cents.

    • Bobby,

      Let me talk to the BOSS and I will see what I can do.

      steve

      • Hmmmm! That response tells a story Steve. I thought you were a loner Lol. I would have told “bobbybobbod” to go “BOBBYBOBBODING”….. 🙂

        Of late I think this is one of your best articles Steve, THANKS.

    • Thomas Malthaus | April 7, 2018 at 12:50 pm | Reply

      I think Steve has a way of emphasizing points and levels of seriousness. Did you read the article?

    • Maurice Miner | April 9, 2018 at 2:19 am | Reply

      FFS. Sorry about the capitalisation, but this means “For Fuck’s Sake!”

      Your two cents are not worth shit. Bold text is there for a reason – it stands out for the brain-dead folk who may scan the post without READING. Sorry about the caps.

      If you don’t like what Steve posts, don’t come here. Some of his posts I do vehemently disagree with, but I do so with a modicum of civility. This is civil discourse. You are the guest, and Steve is the host – seriously, get a life!

  7. I’m a retired, vocationally trained electrical power engineer.
    A few years ago, I visited some old friends, a couple, whom I hadn’t seen in about 25 years. We worked together about thirty years ago and had a lot in common. We were fairly conservative at the time, even though we were young.
    We got back in touch and I found that they had moved from the Midwest to Oregon (Red Flag! Red Flag!). They initially said they moved there for a job. However, within a day of arriving, I realized that they had become tree huggers. They had bees. They were planning on buying goats. The husband took public transportation to work (And work is a $120,000 per year government contractor job). Sick! Sick! Sick!
    Sick? Nothing wrong with goats. It’s just that they aren’t humble folks eking out a living in the country with five kids and a 15-year old F-150. Like most tree huggers, it’s superficial. It’s pretentious. It’s fake. It’s about perception and symbolism. And for most it’s based on emotion and not science.
    Well, the second night, the wife and I got into it. She was trying to tell me that we don’t need to burn all this energy and “we can go back to the horse and wagon days” (her words). She of course continued in the vein that “wind and solar power are going to save us”. I tried to explain to her what I’ve known all along, and what Steve writes about here: There is really no such thing as “alternative energy” that they are all fossil fuel derivatives.
    Well, as you can imagine, we are no longer friends. Their choice, not mine. I was pretty gentle about the discussion. But you all know how it is. These people can’t be reached. After 50 years of non-stop and ever-escalating environmental movement propaganda in the mainstream media, it’s too late to unlearn “the extraordinary popular delusions”. Especially when it concerns that most often taken for granted resource, energy.

    • Oil Guy,

      Thanks for the personal insight. I find the reactions of individuals to this information quite interesting. When someone cuts off all communication after a deep conversation about this, I actually believe THEY GET IT, but they don’t want to believe it. So, they continue to be DELUDED because it gets them through the day.

      The world is full of DELUDED people and they will continue to behave that way until the SHYTE HITS THE FAN. And at that time, they will be totally useless to themselves or anyone around them to make the best of a bad situation.

      steve

    • The comment by OIL GUY addresses a very important issue: the superficiality of the green movement.
      Since I became aware of peak oil I have read a lot about sustainability and I have argued with a lot of environmentalists and my impression of them is quite negative. There isn’t anything wrong with their beliefs but they are so full of contradictions that it’s almost shameful. People attacking coal miners but at the same time flying regularly to distant places (do they know how planes work?), people recycling a lot and being vegetarian but then taking vacations in distant places. And some of them even have the guts to criticize poorer people because they eat meat. People arguing for degrowth but then going to strike if their own salary gets a 10% cut. And I could give you more examples.
      The deep problems of the green movement have been analysed thoroughly by John Michael Greer and I can only recommend his excellent blog: https://www.ecosophia.net/

      Of course not all environmetalists are so hypocritical and some of them are really trying to reduce their ecological footprint but they are only a tiny minority. Most environmentalists I have known tend to pharisaism: observing very strict rules for minor issues and then forgetting about the real important problems.
      Pharisaism is one of the biggest ills of our time.

      • Actually, the superficiality is more on the non-environmentalists then those who have staked out their positions about protecting the environment.

        Non-environmentalists often exhibit a fatalistic, devil-may-care attitude towards protecting the environment, wildlife or anything at all. Your points about “who” uses energy, creates pollution prove nothing – we’re all trapped into the same vicious cycle of how we live and what kind of carbon footprint / pollution we make.

        The real difference – that you so glibly ignored – is those who are trying to make a difference. Their efforts may be insignificant, or even counter-productive, but it is an effort in the right direction.

        That is what is really at issue between environmentally conscious and those that simply don’t care – intentions, effort and focus. The non-environmentally concerned folks simply have no moral or credible arguments that will defend their indifference, while the environmentally conscious “trying” are at the very least, making some effort.

    • Wow. Educated and ignorant. A common combination. Your pathetic argument(s) are irrelevant, 100%. Other then being judgemental, you apparently missed the entire point to the choices made by your old friends (flawed judgement – you were SUPPOSED to assess their choices in your own mind – and learn, but utterly failed to do so).

      And then you stupidly allowed your flawed judgement to destroy a friendship. This is stupid upon stupid. Giving up on what should have lasted a lifetime over a stupid disagreement.

      The POINT being – it does not matter (and never did) who was “right” about the topic you disagreed with. You did not respect their choices, or their efforts. You pissed upon their parade – something you really had no right to do.

      You’re sure to still miss the point, so I’ll spell it out for you. There are those that are trying to do the right thing – and those that won’t (like you). It is irrelevant if their dreams and ambitions are flawed, or if they’re simply wrong about solar power. Their choice. Respect it. As you should have if you really were a true friend. Their life – not yours. What they do has nothing to do with you at all, but you allowed it to affect you. Dumb.

      Your derision for “tree huggers” (and Oregon) reveals a great deal of bias and ignorance too. Apparently you remain blissfully unaware of the extreme degradation of the global environment, for which you have utterly no excuse for. You’re obviously online – and could easily come up to speed and realize that SOMETHING must be done to stop the rapacious destruction of the living biosphere.

      A lot of the people did move to Oregon. So what? Why not? What does it matter to you? Your critical attitude about this reveals a great deal about you. Ignorance, bias, bigotry and a refusal to open your own eyes.

      And damned the bees! And the goats! As if this had ANYTHING to do with posing a relevant, articulate and accurate argument about your so-called “friends”. You’re definitely the type of idiot that has a lot to be learned still. You need to engineer your thinking to wake the hell up to reality.

  8. I remember in the early 70’s the government slowed all highways down to 55mph and recommended things like turning down the heating thermostat to 68 degrees during the night. People began insulating their homes like crazy (I believe there was a tax incentive to do so). Then energy got cheap and unlimited again during the 80’s and 90’s and little more advances in saving energy were made.
    But during the 2000’s then gasoline prices surged again to all time highs. Small town rural America was literally wiped out because it became impossible to make deliveries and travel long distances to work.
    So, you’re right. The good life could come to a halt when the realization of this energy problem hits home. We take it for granted with no leadership from our ‘Leaders’.

  9. Energy crisis solved.

    http://www.fluxcell.com/

    The Fluxcell and Quantum Capacitor energy technologies shrink the footprint of solar cells and electron storage to just a fraction of their size.The Flux Capacitor Solar Cell is able to satisfy the world’s growing demand for a cheaper, cleaner and a more compact and powerful energy source. It has been irrefutably proven that 120 volts and separately 24 amps (120 x 24 = ~3,000 watts) exists within just 1 square foot of sunlight produced from standard everyday silicon solar cells. 3,000 watts can power an entire house. Fluxcell, Inc. has taken this fact and other physics truths and has formulated this basis into a unique solar machine. What this means is that just one 10 x 10 x 12 inch machine can power an entire house instead of the entire roof being covered with solar panels. Today’s solar cells can only produce 16 watts per square foot. By allowing the Fluxcell to supply power to existing technologies such as hydrogen fuel cells, flywheels, compressed air or battery banks, 24 hours of grid free power will be available or a homeowner can be 50% on the grid.

    • Mudgod,

      Thanks for the weekend humor. If you look at the website, you will notice the 10 CENT IPO Price and how its tied into cryptocurrencies. This should be a RED FLAG to anyone.

      steve

    • Looks like somebody watched “Back to the Future” a few too many times and thought the “flux capacitor” was a real thing instead of a made up plot device.

    • Robert Happek | April 7, 2018 at 11:36 am | Reply

      On a bright day, the amount of solar power hitting a square foot of the surface of the earth is just 100 watts (1KW per square meter). Your figure of 3 KW per square foot is overinflated by at least a factor of 30. If that would be true, we would all be burning within minutes during a bright sunny day not only from heat but also from excessive UV radiation. We would all die of cancer. THe reason why we survive is rooted in the fact that solar energy is very DILUTED. That is the reason why it is so difficult to harvest it.

  10. Then maybe we should learn how not to waste energy and spend less and less of it.
    Our Governments should then spend more money on research of fusion energy otherwise we are doomed including them. Why idiots ,stupid and criminals running everything!!??

  11. If he could only get more gigawatts out of his flux capacitor.

  12. Thermal solar, which melts salt and uses conventional steam turbine generation does not require the metals as is required for photovoltaic. Maybe an Ag for a reflecting surface. I agree with what you say, but once the wind turbine is decommissioned, the metals are there for re-purpose. Saying that, wind turbines are not suitable for rural communities (unless in the boondocks, but then they are not animal friendly)

  13. Part of the long term solution to energy is NatGas for the next 50+ years. But I’m noticing more and more who read your articles are seeing why nothing ever comes to be that you write about. Cloud’s solution was the Shanghai Exchange i.e. no effect. He also thought 1.5 billion Muslims would buy silver … no effect. Now you state in a recent article :Market meltdown : Gold & Silver begin to disconnect. Where do you get these thoughts? Oh yes “clicking your red shoes together?” The dollar sinks for the past year and so does silver. The stock market tanks 11% and so does silver.Now you predict that a total collapse is in our future? Many of your readers are now awakened to your Shenanigans. For the past 8 tears, when have you , Cloud or Morgan been right? Steve, get a hold of yourself. You are in for a long ride. The way things are going your forecast is at least 25 years down the road. And maybe never??

    • Joe Lindell,

      Good idea that you keep deluding yourself that ALL IS WELL for the next 25 years or forever. Maybe that helps you sleep at night.

      However, I am simply amazed at the number of DELUDED individuals in the world today, especially in the United States.

      steve

      • DisappearingCulture | April 7, 2018 at 9:57 am | Reply

        It’s an obsessive/compulsive disorder to bitterly spout the same blather over and over. If Joe had bought a home in 2012 and due to a sinkhole opening up nearby his house had gone down in $ value, then it would have been a plot/conspiracy between the realtors and mortgage bankers.
        To express it a couple of times; sure just frustration. But this is at least the 20th time I’ve read this negative meme/theme. It’s sad.
        “For the past 8 tears, when have you , Cloud or Morgan been right?”
        Another sad fact…he keeps spouting this, when 4 years ago let alone 8 this blog wasn’t in existence, he had never heard of Cloud, or probably Morgan either.
        Everyone who reads this blog regularly recognizes these facts.

        • I keep spouting this so that new readers and some current readers will not fall for any of these guru forecasts regarding silver. Silver is a commodity subject to supply and demand. We produce 1 billion ounces a year and industry, silver jewelry etc consumes 800,000,000 ounces. Coins and silver bars is only 200,000,000. If silver demand would increase then the price will rise. None of what Steve says has had any effect these past 8 years. If a shortage was coming, Apple would buy a couple of mines total production. I’m trying to warn new readers to not buy silver until demand truly exceeds supply. Invest elsewhere. It’s never too late to wait. I’m one who listened to Steve these past 8 years and lost investing in silver every year. It is a very good things that I’m rich. So it is not a complaint, it is a warning.

          • DisappearingCulture | April 8, 2018 at 8:58 am |

            “I’m one who listened to Steve these past 8 years….”
            B.S. Joe!
            Steve hasn’t had this blog for 8 years. Maybe 3? And if you bought silver in the last 3 years you haven’t lost much if any value.
            As far as silver’s fiat price; who knows how long it will take to go up?
            When it starts to go up, just like a stock, or Bitcoin, fiat will rush into it driving it up faster and faster. That is why the price is so tightly controlled on the COMEX & through other means.
            But when not if the equity/stock markets go down over 25%, fiat will be looking for a place to go. From past comments it seems you believe that the stock markets will never go down in your functional lifetime. Maybe if you don’t have much left that is true, but I suspect you will see the substantial decrease from the most overvalued market in history. When it does it will drag even the more realistically priced stocks down too, becasue it will usher in recession.
            “We produce 1 billion ounces a year and industry, silver jewelry etc consumes 800,000,000 ounces. Coins and silver bars is only 200,000,000. If silver demand would increase then the price will rise.”
            Assuming your numbers are correct, 100% of silver is consumed in one way or another.
            So using your numbers, there isn’t room to absorb much more demand is there? You just assume more demand won’t be here for a couple decades, and supply will not decrease.

    • Joe

      Go to the BP Statistical Review look at natural gas and you’ll find the Reserve / Production ratio is 12years or less.

    • Joe Lindell –

      On wishes you are able to explain for non-drilling expert readers like myself;

      How shale gas is produced? Is pumping fracking liquids a continuous procedure or a one off? If a one off, how that one push of pressured liquid manages to release all the millions and millions of natural gas CFeet?

      Could it be that it is not a shale gas then, but a conventional gas well/field that just needed a small nudge with pumps?

      If fracking is continuous, how the gas coming out is more energy-positive than the diesel that runs the pumps.

      Honestly, I cannot understand how shale oil and gas are produced, they seem done as alchemy more than physics?

  14. “Green Prince of Darkness” the photovoltaic fraud

    “Fossil Fuel is Nuclear Waste” the peak oil fraud

    Both subjects posted at CanadaFreePress in 2010, updated at FauxScienceSlayer website

    • Joesph,

      Thanks for posting your point of view. However, the notion the ABIOTIC OIL will save us has not come to fruition. I can assure you the Russians are drilling one hell of a lot more wells now to make up for their decline and depletion rates. Even if Abiotic Oil was occurring, it’s not enough to offset the 30 billion barrels a year we consume.

      But, don’t believe me. I am for sure within 5-10 years, any folks who don’t adhere to the peaking of resources will finally get PEAK OIL RELIGION.

      steve

      • Correct Steve

        They just very proudly completed a well 7miles deep. That’s further down then jets fly high. You don’ Do that because of abundance. Maybe desperation but not abundance.

        • JT Roberts, if the WEST dug a hole 7 miles deep they would be called geniuses…. let me tell you, it is the WEST that is desperate not the EAST.

  15. Robert Happek | April 7, 2018 at 11:23 am | Reply

    In 2005, I have installed on my roof 16 solar panels. During the past 13 years, one solar panel failed and was exchanged by the manufacturer (25 years of warranty). There was no problem with the inverter or any other part of the system. Since that time, technology has improved, panels and inverters got much cheaper and more reliable. I am confident that the system will run at least for another 25 years with an effective life span of 40 years. During the past 13 years, the system has generated roughly 45 MW hours of electricity. That is not much, but much better than nothing.

    Quality electronics can last for a very long time. My stereo power amplifier bought in 1968, that is 50 years ago, is still working perfectly. Perhaps in 20 years, the capacitors inside will dry up and will need to be exchanged. That is an easy repair. I do not see any reason why the amp should not work for another 50 years. An inverter is just a huge power amplifier driving transformers instead of speakers. A properly designed inverter should easily last 50 years if not 100 years. Unfortunately, the inverters on the market are not free of design faults. Engineers need to learn to build better inverters and better panels. That learning process can easily take 100 years. The cars of today are infinitely better than the cars of 100 years ago. Let us also not forget that most of the technology is replaced not because it fails or can not be repaired, no, it is replaced because the newer equipment is much better. Science and technology make constant progress.

    Finally, regarding the energy production quotes provided by Steve: It is actually not that bad. So we generate 10% of all energy from renewable resources. Assuming that the long term figure can be increased to 30% (it was already done in Germany) of present consumption, we only need to lower our energy consumption by 70% in order to survive long term. That is actually doable. The present energy consumption is unsustainable and has to come down dramatically. There is indeed no other choice. We will survive in the future like past generations from renewable energy sources. I am very optimistic that a quality life based on 30% of present day energy consumption is possible and realistic. We basically have to give up cars and big inefficient houses and we should be OK. No reason to worry about lack of energy in the future. Only energy waste will not be possible in the future.

    • Answer this. Why are you using a 1968 amplifier as your example? I have a 1929 Model A flat head four cylinder never rebuilt still works fine.

      How long does your cell phone last? 50years or 2? How about your lap top 5-10? Probably not. Increased complexity increases the rate of entropy. The life cycles you are dreaming of won’t exist because they can’t.

      The complexity that would allow these alternatives to actually work would destroy the system.

      The reason the grid has been so reliable for so long is it was built around simple larg rotating generators. The inertia built into these heavy devices can take the shock of variable demand. Inverters can not.

      Do more research before you throw around a bunch hypothetical ideas. Today’s technology doesn’t last as long as yesterday’s that a fact and it’s not planned obsolescence. It’s complexity.

      • Robert Happek | April 7, 2018 at 10:11 pm | Reply

        My first cellphone I bought 12 years ago is still working. I did not replace it simply because I did not see the need for it. My first laptop I bought in 1987 is still working although I do not use it as it is obsolete (can not run current software). In general, I replace things only if they stop to work or get obsolete. My power amplifier still satisfies my needs so there is no need to replace it either.

        The lifetime of technology is not so much a function of its complexity as the quality of its design and production and its (ab)use. Given the technological progress, there is no value in extreme longevity of products. Chips are extremely complicated yet at the same time extremely reliable. If a computer fails, in most cases it is not the chips which fail.

        • DisappearingCulture | April 8, 2018 at 10:25 am | Reply

          “Chips are extremely complicated yet at the same time extremely reliable. If a computer fails, in most cases it is not the chips which fail.”
          They are NOT reliable when there are brownouts or currency spikes; it damages them. They also don’t like heat. Your power amplifier may be so old it doesn’t have chips. My old power amp has no chips.
          Your first phone wasn’t until 2006??
          By the way a lot of electronics fail for reasons other than chips; bad capacitors, bad solder joints…

      • JT Roberts –

        Complexity and stress owing to intensity, too. But manufacturers may put more energy in design, material, fabrication, QI, testing and others to ensure longer life span, although the sum of useful energy produced by the device wouldn’t exceed the energy put earlier into the construction of the device, anyway.

        Use the 1968 amplifier for long hours a day and you’ll see it disintegrating into pieces. Because it is too old, one is unable to compare the quality and performance of today to how it was when anew – thinking it is still working fine, but likely it’s not.

    • Steve

      Nice job I love when your myth busting receives such a response from the myth builders. At present rates of buildout it would take 400 years to achieve the goals people think can be achieved in 30? Crazy. Renewables only aggravate the problem. The energy consumed in their production they never return to the system because all cost are not considered. Add to that the fact there isn’t enough rare earth or lithium to actually build the stuff it’s just not there. We know the global resources and reserves its published by the USGS.

      If people were really smart they would stop right now and preserve what really works.

      Now to speak on how close to collapse we might be people must ask themselves why the subsidies? Oil,gas,coal did not develop from subsidies so why do wind and solar need them? Because they are a cash negative industry meaning they are an energy sink not source. If they were a true source they would stand on their own. But why now do we subsidize oil,gas, coal, and nuclear? Because they to have now become energy sinks. Their EROEI is already too low to stand on their own so they have to be supplemented white additional capital from other parts of the economy.

      Whether we like it or not that is precisely what Limits to Growth predicted. Basically the system is in liquidation as the last available resources are consumed at an ever increasing rate in an effort to out run the problem. But you can’t.

      • It happens more or less the same with nuclear energy. Leave nuclear without subsidies and this industry would collapse in the blink of an eye.

        About THE LIMITS TO GROWTH: it’s really amazing how this 70s study has stood the prove of time. If this was a sane world Dennis Meadows and Donella Meadows would have already received the Nobel Peace Prize. Moreover the book would be read by all teenagers at school.
        I discovered it by chance 6 years ago and I am still amazed that humanity has ignored such an insightful work.

  16. Okay so, first of all this article is neither objective or scientific at all, second you are very superficial in many parts, I mean many many parts. Well I want to start to say that I’m not an ignorant when it’s about energy, I’m an energy engineer and I perfectly know what i’m Talking about, I’ve got a degree about all of this super crucial and harsh energy situation. Let’s start from the fact that everything, literally everything has got a carbon footprint therefore blaming renewables doesn’t make sense at all, they’re just a different (much cleaner and i’ll explain why) way to produce energy. Are called Renewables because they “renew” and don’t need to burn something, which is extremely inefficient, just consider the fact that your ICE car has got an efficiency of about 20/25% (at most, but it depends from many factors) which means that the 75% of the gas that you pay is thrown away! Obviously the only thing that rules the world is Money and that’s the reason why every single company tries to stop renewables, because being able to produce your own energy and being independent it’s scaring! In Europe many offshore wind project are taking place without government subsidies and that means that economically speaking is profitable. If you didn’t know many fossil fuel projects are subsidised by the government .But let’s get back to science, you’ve probably heard of climate change, well if you think it’s a hoax then don’t read what i’m writing because I don’t want to lose time to start a useless discussion, but if you believe in science and what scientist say then you should be scared about it and you should know that we have to quit emitting so much CO2. The atmosphere is reaching the amount of CO2 that was previously found when dinosaurs where on earth.. I mean think about it. Wind and Solar energy are not the only solution, but fossil fuels are just very old forest (grown by the sun, therefore is sun energy) transformed over the years into chemical energy. Did you know that the sun in one hour delivers to the earth more than the amount of energy that humanity needs in the whole year? And Well Wind energy is just a consequence of solar energy, Earth would be just Rocks without the sun shining and the water. The future could be Nuclear fusion but it’s still far away from being a reality. I just want to add a few more things : First any single turbine uses very special and rare materials, and with turbines i mean those ones for planes, for coal/natural gas/oil power plant, wind turbines, hydro turbines and bla bla bla, so it’s not just about Wind. Second if you didn’t know solar panel are almost fully recyclable and Third.. obviously it needs a colossal amount of energy in order to manufacture solar panels and wind turbines but is the same for any other power plant, the difference is that renewables don’t pollute anymore when they operate. The greener the grid is the less every single thing we manufacture pollutes. And keep in mind that from an industrial point of view in order to cut down costs of manufacturing, the production needs to ramp up and economies of scale need to be used and it takes quite a lot of time to figure out the way to optimise processes, keep in mind that any other technology is at least 50 years old, at the beginning they were very expensive too. In the near future the cost of renewables will be so low that (they already are very low) will be the only choice! Please comment smart thoughts !

    • What a long comment about nothing that I’m sure you gave yourself a pat on the back for doing. Prediction: none of what you said will work. I’ve been studying this predicament for years and I have seen nothing that replaces oil gas coal. Mother Nature did all the heavy lifting for us and converted it to chemical energy. The problem is mankind lifted all the easiest stuff out the ground first and made no effort over the decades to conserve or try to find an alternative. Maybe will get lucky and Lockheed Martin will roll out their compact fusion reactor in 10 years but I wouldn’t plan on it

    • Hi Francesco, here some data about Germany electricity production for 2017.
      Solar power instaled 40GW(20%)
      Wind……………………..45 GW(24%)
      Solar power generated 38TWh(7,9%)
      Wind……………………..104TWh(21,5%)
      Máximum combined S/W power generated … 45GWh during midday hours in June and July with a
      mínimum rate of conventional sources of 40-50% of estimated demand.
      This means that there is a limit of RREE can go into the grid, every time they produce 40-45 GWh, Germany has to export between 20-25% of this energy, because their conventional sources will produce 50% of demand in order to keep tension in the grid avoiding intermitence sending “cheap” energy to other countries.I mean, if demand is 70GW and we have 45 GWh RREE, conventional sources will produce 35GWh, so they have to export 10GWh in order to have a range to stabilize the grid, if neccesary. Germany exports energy every time RREE penetrate enough into production
      So,with solar and wind, we have a 50% loss between the power instaled and the máximum energy generated observed, plus a 25% loss between energy generated and energy really developed in the country, exporting this energy is not an option unless they doubled or tripled the grid, which is not very reliable in the name of renovables
      Regards
      Source: https://www.energy-charts.de/energy.htm?source=conventional&period=annual&year=2017

      • Very good John

        Those are the facts. Read it and weep. Intermittent renewables cause severe problems above 20% penetration. They simply don’t work.

      • Robert Happek | April 7, 2018 at 10:25 pm | Reply

        The problem Germany has is a temporary problem due to a non-existent large scale energy storage. Once this problem is solved, all the excess electricity produced will be stored for later usage. Again, car technology is still improving despite more than 100 history of innovation in car design. Progress in renewable energy will continue for a couple of centuries before that technology matures.

        • Ok, so they just would need an 80 to 100 GW storage system to keep the spare energy, problem solved!!!, I cannot understand how stupid we have been

          • JT Roberts | April 8, 2018 at 4:21 am |

            Right if they only taught math in school perhaps some could understand. Everyone is so dumbed down by their own emotions they can’t critically think anymore.

          • John Blonde –

            Nature didn’t store solar and geological energy into Li-I batteries but in fossil fuels and that took hundreds of millions of years – but we consumed all that storage in a mere 300 years since the Industrial Revolution;

            Now, the flux of renewable energy, storage and assisting technologies claimed and reported casts serious doubts: How a real-time solar/wind energy-capturing device does achieve that level of useful work much better than what nature has managed, although both are empowered by the same energy source, the Sun despite the laws of physics are the same for both?

            If one to believe all reports, a 1 million barrel of crude oil put into constructing renewable solar/wind, say, will be returned in one year, two or even 8 – but nature has taken millions of years to do the same?!

            In fact, the solar needs to work around the clock, furnace-hot, to achieve that level of energy-capturing – according to the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, but we know solar doesn’t even work very well under harsh Sun, this sun doesn’t shine 24/7 and wind doesn’t blow all time?!

            Ok, so they just would need an 80 to 100 GW storage system to keep the spare energy, problem solved!!!, I cannot understand how stupid we have been“?

            Or,

            …I cannot understand how stupid we are?”

      • John Blonde

        Germany is digging for its own coal, importing crude and gas like no tomorrow!

        One doubts the more oil Germany imports the higher reported renewable production – being a paradox or dirty data?!

        Mineral oil remains Germany’s biggest single primary energy source covering 34.9% of energy demand, up from 33.9% in 2016, AGEB said.
        Within the oil complex, petrol and diesel use was up 2% year on year, kerosene consumption increased by 0.7%, light heating oil was up 2% and naphtha demand from the chemical industry increased by 7%, it said.
        Demand for natural gas increased by 5% to cover 23.7% of the primary energy mix mainly due to higher demand for heating, although gas for power generation also rose, it added.
        By contrast, both hard coal and nuclear fell 10% on year, now covering only 11.0% and 6.1% respectively in the primary energy mix, with Germany planning to phase out both forms of energy.
        Lignite use, however, was little changed at 11.2% with domestically-mined lignite remaining Germany’s biggest single source of electricity, it said.
        .”

        https://www.platts.com/latest-news/natural-gas/london/oil-and-natural-gas-share-of-german-energy-use-26860706

    • Francesco –

      …just consider the fact that your ICE car has got an efficiency of about 20/25% (at most, but it depends from many factors) which means that the 75% of the gas that you pay is thrown away! Obviously the only thing that rules the world is Money and that’s the reason why every single company tries to stop renewables…

      An ICE is not different from any solar or wind devices, they all are ‘heat-engine’ under one set of laws of physics;

      Astronomical money are being spent on solar and wind to provide a solution, seas of fossil fuels are consumed to build that solution, yet a solar would discard 80% of the solar energy falling on it, too.

      Solar wouldn’t capture the remaining 20% of sunshine energy if the temperature is higher than certain level, shadowed, dirty or the long chain of supporting subsystems are suffering degradation, as well.

      Wind wouldn’t make any if the wind doesn’t blow or blows hard, also it will fail if fossil fuels-based lubricants are inadequate.

      Same set of physics and nature laws apply for all energy-producing devices with no exception. Some claim they are all even under other harsh physics constraints that are just recently documented.

      An ICE burns the fossil fuel non-converted. Renewables require that fossil fuel to be converted many times and highly dissipated – until they come to existence, consuming much more energy per KW produced.

      ….every single company tries to [find new ways to burn finite fossil fuels reserves as quickly as possible, including creating technologies that are fossil fuels-dependent although claimed otherwise].

      Fossil fuels production worldwide rockets day in day out, the Middle East never lives a peaceful year since 1914, too.

      Did you know that the sun in one hour delivers to the earth more than the amount of energy that humanity needs in the whole year?

      Now try capturing that delivery without fossil fuels and you are back to how the Sumerians have done it thousands of years ago.

      In the near future the cost of renewables will be so low that (they already are very low) will be the only choice! Please comment smart thoughts !

      The cost of renewables will be so low[, the human crew seen in the video below will go starving because the power sold out of the offline farm is not even enough to buy them a Big Mac after paying for the diesel consumed in the process? This is Alice in the Wonderland Energy, hardly anything for real!]

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8rIXjOPZ8w

  17. Steve (AKA SRSrocco)

    Been here for several years steve and you keep getting better and better . Thanks – great stuff to think about on this site.

    I actually prefer the way you currently capitalize and bold your comments. I am often zipping down the list of comments looking for your rejoinders.

    Thanks again

    Mike

  18. Would love to subscribe to your YouTube channel, but find it impossible to deal with Google and their refusal to update info. How can I do it?
    Dick

  19. You definitely are a brave man mr. St. Angelo. This topic you are addressing it’s one of the most sensitive and one that can cause irate reactions.
    In my view renewables have the same function as a seat belt in a car. Or to use another metaphor they are the spring at the bottom of a lift’s shaft. First they don’t seem much useful and even can seem to be ruinous but when problems come and your supply of fossile fuels gets in trouble then you must rely on them. They are not going to prevent degrowth but maybe they can absorb part of the shock caused by the oil crash and reduce the damage.

    So even if we know renewables aren’t going to keep Business as Usual and are not going to prevent degrowth we should invest in them because they are the only energy sources we’ll have in the long term. How can we choose the best renewables? This is the difficult question. Every land has its own climate and its own needs of energy so for each land there must be a different answer. Also it’s important to keep in mind the EROI of each renewable technology. If the study of Charles Hall and Pedro Prieto is correct then photovoltaics have a very low EROI, between 3 and 4, and so we shouldn’t rely much on them. Eolic energy seems to have a higher EROI, perhaps as high as 15, so investing in windturbines is probably a wise decision. Eolic energy seems to be the renewable with the brightest future.
    We need to study the EROIs of renewables much better.

    To conclude I want to make crystal clear that we are facing a huge challenge. If we could solve the electricity problem then we still would have the transport problem. And solving one but not the other is not an option. As Alice Friedemann explains in her book WHEN TRUCKS STOP RUNNING it’s quite useless to have renewable electricity if transport collapses because all trucks rely on diesel or gasoline. And electrifying transport is the biggest challenge of all.
    Are we already too late to save our civilization ? We don’t know but some are researching it:
    http://www.medeas.eu/model/medeas-model

  20. This is what Gail Tverberg from ourfiniteworld.com has been saying for many years as well and that is that renewables are not going to save us from our energy problems in the future.

  21. Why the metals community hates cryptos: This linked from Silverdoctors by the boys at ” The Daily Coin” reveals all….

    A famous MTV video once accurately proclaimed that video killed the radio star.

    So now we know that the metals are doing so poorly because crypto killed them.

    ( of course government manipulation had nothing to do with it )

    Translation of this article.

    ” the metals community was so blind they couldn’t see the massive manipulation coming with infinite fiat and therefore we cannot take responsibility for misleading the pm community ( while offering no alternative to survive ) so we will blame crypto”

    https://www.silverdoctors.com/gold/gold-news/sentiment-matters-as-american-eagle-sales-suffer-worst-march-ever/

    • DisappearingCulture | April 8, 2018 at 5:01 pm | Reply

      GLP,

      What are you trying to communicate here? I can guess at what the author of the article is trying to communicate.

  22. Steve, are you aware of our genetic predisposition to deny reality? https://un-denial.com/denial-2/theory-short/

    I stumbled across Rob Mielcarski’s website a few months ago and it completely changed the way I view human behaviour. Now I understand why so many people are completely deluded when it comes to our dire energy predicament. Rob maintains one of the best websites on human overshoot that I’ve come across. Check it out. https://un-denial.com/

  23. I just got back from “The future of money & wealth” conference in FL this weekend

    There were some very smart people there, from many different fields. Real estate, oil & energy, precious metals etc.

    Even Doug Duncan, the chief economist for Fannie Mae.

    Believe Steve people; I’m telling you in all honesty – these guys from all of their different fields all concurred that trouble is ahead and that it isn’t far off. Doug Duncan thought within the next two years at most.

    Nat

    • Nathaniel,

      How interesting. Yes, it seems as if all the celestial stars are perfectly aligned for one hell of a Crash. Of course, it could be slow at first, but when the markets really start to unravel, it will get very ugly.

      steve

      • It truly was;

        Robert Kiyosaki of “Rich Dad Poor Dad” spoke a lot. He fears the worst as well – and is hedging his 8500 rental units with piles of gold, he said.

        Edward Griffin, of “The Creature from Jekyll Island” felt the same way. He sat on a panel of crypto guys and shot their arguments down with simple definitions of what true money really is.

        Big players, all preparing for the absolute worst. Opinions they don’t share in more public forums

        Have you heard of a guy named Christ Martenson, Steve? An energy/economics guy. Spoke a lot on theories of exponential growth, in terms of debt and energy consumption

        Nat

  24. Renewable energy ‘simply won’t work’: Top Google engineers
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/11/21/renewable_energy_simply_wont_work_google_renewables_engineers/

    Solar and Wind produced less than one percent of total world energy in 2016 – IEA WEO 2017
    https://www.iea.org/publications/freepublications/publication/KeyWorld2017.pdf

    UC Davis Peer Reviewed Study: It Will Take 131 Years to Replace Oil with Alternatives
    (Malyshkina, 2010)
    http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/es100730q

    University of Chicago Peer Reviewed Study: predicts world economy unlikely to stop relying on fossil fuels (Covert, 2016)
    https://www.aeaweb.org/articles?id=10.1257/jep.30.1.117

    Shortage of resources for renewable energy and food production (Rhodes 2011)
    https://www.scribd.com/document/375501088/Shortage-of-resources-for-renewable-energy-and-food-production-Rhodes-2011

    Top scientists show why powering US using 100 percent renewable energy is a delusional fantasy
    http://energyskeptic.com/2017/big-fight-21-top-scientists-show-why-jacobson-and-delucchis-renewable-scheme-is-a-delusional-fantasy/

    Why sustainable power is unsustainable
    https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn16550-why-sustainable-power-is-unsustainable/

    Renewable energy mix played role in SA blackout, third AEMO report confirms
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-12-12/renewable-energy-mix-played-role-in-sa-blackout/8111184

    At this rate, it’s going to take nearly 400 years to transform the energy system
    https://www.technologyreview.com/s/610457/at-this-rate-its-going-to-take-nearly-400-years-to-transform-the-energy-system/

    Desert sun in Qatar too hot for solar panels to work
    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/desert-sun-in-qatar-too-hot-for-solar-panels-to-work-h23kmktbp

    Air Pollution Casts Shadow over Solar Energy Production
    http://pratt.duke.edu/about/news/solar-pollution

    Germany’s Expensive Gamble on Renewable Energy
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/germanys-expensive-gamble-on-renewable-energy-1409106602

    Germany Runs Up Against the Limits of Renewables
    https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601514/germany-runs-up-against-the-limits-of-renewables/

    The Curse of Energy Efficiency (Jevon’s Paradox)
    https://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2018/02/26/Energy-Efficiency-Curse/

    IEA Sees No Peak Oil Demand ‘Any Time Soon’
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/iea-sees-no-peak-oil-demand-any-time-soon-1488816002

    Bill Gates: We need global ‘energy miracles’
    http://www.cnn.com/2010/TECH/02/12/bill.gates.clean.energy/index.html

    https://imgur.com/a/pYxKa

  25. @ Nathaniel,
    Every piece of advice such as having an “income producing property” as a safety against economic collapse seems shortsighted as Kyosaki’s reported gold “hedge” againt his 8500 remtal units suggests.

    Eventually , renters won’t be able to pay, but even if you evict them ( which costs$) the government is going to squeeze you for every last property tax dollar. Indeed, when and were will the buck stop?

    • When the gubment comes a lookin for money to steal because they are broke, guess where they are going to look first? Fixed assets like property, especially rentals where income is earned, and especially from those who hold a lot of them. IMO it’s time to reduce property holdings and put it elsewhere – the only safe thing now being gold and silver.

    • I completely agree. For some of those guys, it will come down to what types of properties they have; but they will all hurt, some could lose everything.

  26. EROEI has now a serious newly-coined challenging concept: “the sum of useful energy produced is always less than the total energy put into the the construction of the device producing it“.

    EROEI defies physics when it promotes audits like a “1 barrel of crude oil invested was enough to get 100 crude oil barrels-produced“, as the 1 barrel doesn’t have enough energy to sustain the production and the running of all machinery, humans and other energy-intensive processes extracting the 100 barrels, up to making that quantity a final useful energy at the consumption point.

    Why this has not been recognised earlier? The likely reason being that James Watt’s engine was fueled at the mouth of the coal pit. The industrial base that built the engine was not that far from the pit, too. Mine leases in Britain, back in the 1700s, were not based on the quantity of the coal dug-up but on period of the lease. Effectively, the coal itself was priced at £0 when it was short-circut and consumed directly to empower the process of extracting more coal.

    This has suspended natural human greed, that would have protected the coal from being dug up priceless, if the finite nature of coal was promoted and understood as THE ultimate increasing value of the reserve, not the money the coal has sold-for on the market ‘today’.

    This vicious tunnel vision resulted in a poorly audited energy consumption, and has become incredibly severe when crude oil has later arrived and then natural gas, in what we call today, the energy mix.

    In Iraq today, the country that exports 5m b/d, for instance, the domestic consumption of oil is roughly 700k barrel a day, although the country deeply dives daily in urban destruction the more it exports oil, due to non-stop conflicts. Iraq manufactures nothing and grid electricity is practically non-existent, which, when boosted by poverty, allows nothing for the majority to exercise other than violence and destabilisation during day, and going to bed after the sunset (neighboring and similar climate Saudi, for example, with less population, consumes 6 folds more of its national oil but it exports almost double that amount, 10 m/b/d).

    Thus the 700k is largely consumed in Iraq daily to run the domestic oil production and exporting processes.

    Sized, autonomous power generators and oil refining modules, installed at the oil field, are fed from the same oil and associated gas extracted, and they go off-records.

    By the time the 5m barrels arrive at destinations overseas, they go to empower industrial bases, processes, transportation, humans and machinery to manufacture more industrial supplies that go back to Iraq to increase oil production – expected to rise to 11 million barrel by 2022.

    As the overall heavly mechanised process is subject to wear and tear every minute and being highly waste energy-dissipating exercise (2nd law of thermodynamics), like when a 400 tonne coal-carrying mining truck in China or the US requiring fuel, repairs or replacement, the oil tanker ship requiring capital repairs, replacements and fuel, or when foreign forces sail all the way to Iraq to protect oil fields from conflicts – the 5m barrels become hardly enough for other than being consumed to extract the next 5m barrel!

    It might be that cars seen moving, lights seen on in cities serving the process over the world, but they are moving and set on only for that purpose – extracting the next 5m of ‘Iraqi’ oil consuming the 5m barrels produced yesterday!

    This is a universal across all fossil fuels reserves, worldwide.

    Therefore, the real EROEI ratio is, and always was, 1 unit of fossil fuels extracted, >1 unit of fossil fuels invested. When oil falls short, more coal comes to rescue. When coal falls short, more natural gas and oil come to rescue, and so on..

    This explains how millions for years-worth of solar stored in fossil fuels reserves have vanished in a mere 300 years since the Industrial Revolution, despite there is 23000 man hour of energy embodied in each barrel of oil, yet alone the energy in coal and gas.

    The experiment of Capitalism since the Eighteenth Century (in fact Socialism as its sub product, too) managing fossil fuels by suspending natural humans greed, forcing it to fail realising that the real energy value being in the finite nature of fossil fuels not the immediate selling return on the market, creating the false perception of energy abundance and resulting burning seas of fossil fuels in the air, all along – has been no less than making all humans turned babies when they put their hands on the hot cookers – not fathoming they are burning themselves!

    EROEI has always been felt a hypnotic unit of measurement, never accurate, never real and the time has come for humans to ditch it and its bad legacy of wrong, sleep-walking seeded-consciousness – at least to keep a minimum fossil fuels-enabled safety-net that allows humans a dignified continuity into the future.

    • DisappearingCulture | April 9, 2018 at 4:26 pm | Reply

      What the Hell was that rant about? Can you make your point in a more succinct discourse?

      • Basically he is referring to the first law of thermodynamics. Conservation.

        You can’t make energy you can’t destroy energy in the end it’s always a net zero equation.

        However it’s not very useful in this conversation because energy is what drives the economy. It’s almost like saying a steam engine never existed.

  27. Global crude oil production is on a steady upward trend, kissing 100MM bpd today.

    https://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.php?id=34492

    Natural gas is super abundant and will be for decades to come. Cars can run on it, conversion is fast and easy if need be and vehicles represent 40-50% of a barrel of oil that goes to gasoline.

    There is no need for a peak oil panic.

    Natural gas and oil have inherent thermo limits. Most of the key patents were issued back in the 1930’s. But Natural gas is the cleanest and selected globally as the fuel for transition into the low carbon economy.

    Solar and batteries are just getting started. The patent explosion in just the last decade is mind boggling as is the investment interest to continuous improvement which currently shows now slow down. The supporting data – just look at Steve’s charts on how much investment there is in solar and the slope of the curve as well.

    Solar is Amazing.

    German villages have been disrupting the big power companies for years now with alternative energy by selling excess power back to the grid. Germany’s largest power company has gone through massive restructuring as a result.

    Air pollution is the fifth biggest cause of death and the #1 environmental cause.

    Can’t wait to see the future of alternative energy.

    • Cary,

      While I appreciate your comment, you fall into the category of individual who is DELUDED.

      steve

    • Cary

      “Lost in Space”

      There is no alternative future. The last 10years we’ve seen a 45% annual increase in renewables and we still only have 1% of demand being produced. It’s not scalable and it is dependent on fossil fuel.

  28. Steve

    Just a thought for a future post.

    1 Compare the environmental cost of solar production and disposal with Fossil Fuel.

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2017/06/solar-panel-waste-environmental-threat-clean-energy/

    Also a thought experiment.

    All life exists in an environment of low entropy moving to high entropy. The use of fossil fuels fits naturally into that order. Renewables are an attempt to reverse that cycle so they are attempting to take high entropy and concentrate it to low entropy then back again. So far only biological life can do that.

    There is simply not reason to believe it will ever work it is in the same category as fusion or abiotic oil.

    • JT Roberts –
      Hydro, Geothermals, for instance, are also devices that capture high entropy, in the largely disorganised water flows and disorganised geothermal, into lower entropy!

      But that takes immense amount of Energy to achieve. The energy being what is consumed to build a dam or drilling and capturing geo heat, and the rest of the system/processes involved.

      However, view recent documentaries on Oroville dam spillway repairs in the last 1.5 years. The power turbines installed will never have the material integrity to pay off all fossil fuels that have constructed the dam (which is similar to the ‘boiler room’ in a coal power plant) and the turbines themselves. They will wear and tear and ultimately cease before the sum of useful energy they produce match the massive energy put into constructing the dam (this is applicable to Nuclear, too, which go offline every two years or earlier for repairs and refueling for weeks and months in each cycle!).

      Read more logs and you’ll see almost half of the Oroville turbines are now off line awaiting repairs!
      This what explains why the spillway has collapsed and the turbines became faulty when average person would assume they never require any fossil fuels energy for repairs and they last forever because they are renewables! – being never educated about Entropy internal to matter!

      The beauty of living plants, they are perfected by nature, self-building and growing, and they store some of the solar energy they directly capture into their mass – another feature ‘Renewables’ cannot do!

      Human-run processes will never achieve higher than the <=2% efficiency of living plants, no matter how much fossil fuels energies they burn – the newly identified relation which explains where all fossil fuels reserves have gone?!

  29. one question: what do you think natgas powplants turbines are made of? 😉

    but i understand your line of thinking.

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