Wind Energy – Too Much Power for the US North-West

Plentiful rain and now melting snow has completely filled many reservoirs and exhausted their overflow capacities the US North-West. To the extent actually that operators are now forced to produce excess electricity destroying demand for the output of the many wind power stations in the region. In an unprecedented step, wind farms are now regularly taken from the grid for several hours at night, to the great anger of and financial cost for the owners. Exporting the surplus energy to California or to neighboring Canada apparently fails because of insufficient long distance power lines.

ON-green-policy! Just as in Germany, where, thanks to guaranteed prices for the producers, grid operators sometimes have to pay consumers for using wind power in windy nights, the great investments in green power has not been accompanied by a correspondent upgrading of transmission lines. In my book this amounts to a spectacular failure of policy makers. Actually, first it is a market failure. Quiet to the contrary of the claims of blind market believers, the invisible hand is quiet inefficient at planning ahead. In this particular case, it didn’t care at all about missing power lines and created a malfunctioning system. And that’s were politicians come in. They are supposed to regulate the economy so as to ensure a proper, secure and sustainable functioning of vital systems. A combination of both is the condition for a truly efficient economy a well-off society and a healthy natural environment.

Source: Economist

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.