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Earth Politics Technology

Germany's Renewable Plan Faces Popular Resistance 176

Posted by timothy
from the maybe-they-should-try-low-resistance-wire dept.
diegocg writes "Germany has outlined the details of the new 800km (497mi) high voltage power link that will transport renewable power from the north to the industrial south. It is part of the Energiewende plan to replace nuclear power and most other non-renewable energy sources with renewable sources in the next decades. However, the power link is facing a problem: popular resistance from affected neighborhoods."
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Germany's Renewable Plan Faces Popular Resistance

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  • NIMBY (Score:3, Insightful)

    by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland&yahoo,com> on Thursday February 13, 2014 @06:06PM (#46241371) Homepage Journal

    Strikes again!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 13, 2014 @06:37PM (#46241567)

    Don't forget ceding sovereignty to Russia in return for natural gas. Those pipes get turned off, there will have to be major emergency precautions taken to prevent tens of thousands of Germans from freezing.

  • by ackthpt (218170) on Thursday February 13, 2014 @06:39PM (#46241587) Homepage Journal

    How about no power lines, no power for YOU!

  • Re:NIMBY (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 13, 2014 @06:42PM (#46241599)

    Basically all those environmentalists love nature. Now Nuclear Power is bad for nature, all that radiated stuff and so they don't want it anywhere near them and are all for solar and wind power. Now all these solar panels and wind towers are bad for nature, they take a lot of space where plants could grow, stand out which harms that nice mountainous skyline and of course they harm birds, so they don't want it anywhere near them. Good the politicians say lets have all that stuff somewhere where nobody lives and move the electricity through half Germany, great except this requires more power lines and these take a lot of space, harm the skyline, give off electro magnetic waves, etc. so you do not want them anywhere near you. I hope you see the pattern.

    Right now we use more coal power to replace the nuclear power plants, because the coal plants where already there and every environmentally "good" solution gets blocked by environmentalists protecting the nature near them.

  • by ackthpt (218170) on Thursday February 13, 2014 @07:28PM (#46241917) Homepage Journal

    Yeah. 3,300 Ohm resistors were some of my favorites, but for popularity it's mighty tough to beat the trusty 47 KOhm 5% tolerance 1/4 watt film resistor for popularity.

  • by Nemyst (1383049) on Thursday February 13, 2014 @09:14PM (#46242581) Homepage
    Because of efficiency. Renewables aren't magically less prone to efficiency benefits with scale. Large-scale solar plants don't use the same photovoltaic cells that you will on your roof because they're absolutely terrible for efficiency (in terms of space, but more importantly cost) - they'll use large-scale reflectors and water tanks. The wind mill you put in your backyard will never reach the same peak capacity that industrial wind mills get; it's too small and not high enough. Let's not even talk about hydro, which isn't trendy but still is a renewable by all accounts.

    There are advantages to distributed power, and they can be combined, but relying purely on distributed renewables is a bad idea.
  • Re:NIMBY (Score:4, Insightful)

    by macpacheco (1764378) on Friday February 14, 2014 @02:43AM (#46243619)

    Large, powerful, long range transmission lines aren't that expensive. My Brazil transmits many tens of GWs worth of electricity over distances around 2000km. They are great if you have a cheap electricity source (large hydro), that you can't really choose where to build (you must build in the strongest flow rivers that have enough vertical gradient).

    Instead, old fashioned water cooled nukes can be built anywhere you have a cold water source like the sea, a river, a lake. They only have problems where the water is too hot (like over 30C / 80F in the summer). Proposed high temperature reactors could even be air cooled, and don't require cold air either, so they can be built anywhere. Nuclear isn't cheap, but if you don't have a big old hydro plant, they are the only low cost, reliable, clean electricity source a country can have. Spent nuclear fuel (SNF) is not a real problem, if we build the LFTR / Thorium reactors, since they can burn the uranium SNF (like 95% Thorium for 5% SNF), and there are other solutions to burn the SNF too. If all SNF in the world were fissioned, it would make up for a few decades of our entire electricity supply !

    Don't let others tell you that nuclear must be expensive. Half of current nukes cost is a direct consequence of anti nuclear lobby to over regulate nuclear power plants and the cost of multiple stop/resume construction due to political pressure to shutdown nuclear power plant construction. Nukes seem expensive, but when you consider that the uranium is cheap (less than 15% of the total nukes cost) over it's lifetime a nuke is cheaper than coal (don't even need tax breaks, just low interest loans, since the nukes cost is mostly before it starts operating, much like hydro).

  • by Kohlrabi82 (1672654) on Friday February 14, 2014 @05:19AM (#46243943)

    I don't know where you got your numbers, but here's what is on Wikipedia for CO2 [wikipedia.org] And GWh generated. [wikipedia.org] Let's at least compare the same year for each country.

    • US: CO2 6,750,000 / 4,256,100 GWh=1.59 tons of CO2 per GWh
    • Germany: CO2-810,000 / 617,600 GWh=1.31 tons of CO2 per GWh

    It's certainly better than the US, but considering this big push the Germany is in for clean energy and the US is only half-ass moving in that direction, I'm a little surprised it is as close as it is.

    This is because Germany now uses coal power plants instead of nuclear plants to produce the necessary electricity.

    France is on the better side of this by far at: CO2-370,000 / 560,500 GWh=0.66 tons of CO2 per GWh

    How surprising, nuclear energy is green energy.

"In matters of principle, stand like a rock; in matters of taste, swim with the current." -- Thomas Jefferson

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