This forum is about wrong numbers in science, politics and the media. It respects good science and good English.
You do have to admire the "wriggle" ability of greenies.
When confronted with the evidence of Global chilling they declared that it was "masking the full effects of global warming.
But what this "wind energy backs up gas fuelled generation" explanation doesn't do is explain why.
I mean. why would you want to back up cheap gas fuelled generation with very very expensive wind generated electricity when:
a) we don't have regular gas outages when we need power
b) the back up is only available when the wind blows
In short, there is no logical reason for wind turbines in the current energy climate. Even less now that the politicians are descending like carrion eaters on Shale Gas reserves. Including, surprisingly, the "Greenest Government ever" in the UK.
What is interesting amongst all the green furor caused by the sudden support of shale gas and the appointment of a climate Sceptic to head up the DofE, is that all the arch Greenies such as Zac Goldsmith can get worked up about is a third runway at Heathrow. He had nothing to say (that was reported) about hacking back wind farm subsidies nor about Shale gas.
I guess a number of Greenies are getting set to pove over to population growth as the next big scam as highlighted by David Gardner in his post and for which the evidence is slowly building of the media, including the BBC, "getting on board".
Of course, my guess is that, alongside the usual taxpayers money being spent on "scientific" research, the real money will be in food production and the land to grow it on, now suitably elevated in value by the bio-fuels scam.
Now we can all look forward to calorie trading schemes.
Further to my previous post I've just noticed that the 4.1% figure from the document on the clepair.net website is actually 1.6%. The 4.1% figure is quoted in the abstract, but in the conclusions this has been amended to 1.6% following feedback from a reader.
So if we assume the UK can be regarded as a larger scale version of the Netherlands, our current 6580 MW nameplate wind capacity would produce a fossil fuel saving (and by extension, a CO2 saving) equivalent to switching a 105 MW power station off. The only thing we really get out of the 6580 MW is about 1600 MW of politically correct electricity (assuming a 25% capacity factor).
I thought I'd check out the "Action for Renewables" website, and found something interesting. This Green campaigning organisation is actually run by the British wind industry trade body RenewablesUK (formerly known as the British Wind Energy Association or BWEA, but it now covers wind and wave power):
"About Action for Renewables
Action for Renewables is an arms-length campaign of RenewableUK (formerly BWEA), the trade association for renewable energy suppliers in Britain. While it is sponsored by companies, the campaign itself is activist-led - The website provides the facilities for renewable energy supporters to campaign directly to their elected representatives, as well as organise campaigning events for themselves."
So RenewablesUK appears to have set up its own Green NGO rather than relying on the likes of Greenpeace. It might be that the established Green NGOs are cooling off to some extent in their promotion of wind energy, or are not seen as doing a good enough job in protecting the wind industry's flow of subsidy money.
Jonathan Pyke doesn't appear to be one of the activists, he is actually employed directly by RenewablesUK as the campaign co-ordinator. He is listed as one of RenewableUK's staff on this webpage:
For anybody who has heard the expression "All chiefs, no Indians" to describe a company, I'd say RenewablesUK represents a pretty good example. It looks like about two thirds of the staff are directors, managers or heads of something or another.
I originally assumed the claim that wind is providing back-up to fossil fuel was just some blather by a Green activist. But as Pyke works for RenewablesUK, this claim might be more serious than I thought.