electricity generation

Turns out we never needed NZ Power: power prices drop

At the last election Labour and the Greens proposed nationalising our power markets.

Their plan was utterly crazy and based on lies and false promises. Fortunately it isn’t really needed, as the market has taken care of it.

The latest New Zealand Energy Quarterly, released today by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), shows the average cost of electricity paid by residential consumers has fallen for the first time in 15 years.

Average sales-based electricity cost data for the year ended March 2016 indicates the average residential cost per unit of electricity used over the period was 1.7 per cent lower than in the previous year.

?The decrease in residential electricity costs was driven by increased discounting activity and incentive credits, which rose 10 per cent compared to the previous year,? says James Hogan, MBIE?s Manager of Energy and Building Trends.

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Buy electric cars…that’ll save the planet…oh wait!

I love it when news stories like this hit the headlines.

They show the lunacy of Green thinking.

In this traffic-packed Dutch city, electric cars jostle for space at charging stations. The oldest exhaust-spewing vehicles will soon be banned from the city center. Thanks to generous tax incentives, the share of electric vehicles has grown faster in the Netherlands than in nearly any other country in the world.

But behind the green growth is a filthy secret: In a nation famous for its windmills, electricity is coming from a far dirtier source. Three new coal-fired power plants, including two here on the Rotterdam harbor, are supplying much of the power to fuel the Netherlands’ electric-car boom.

As the world tries to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions and combat climate change, policymakers have pinned hopes on electric cars, whose range and convenience are quickly improving. Alongside the boom has come a surging demand for power to charge the vehicles, which can consume as much electricity in a single charge as the average refrigerator does in a month and a half.

The global shift to electric cars has a clear climate benefit in regions that get most of their power from clean sources, such as California or Norway. But in areas supplied by dirtier power, like China, India and even the Netherlands, which is on track to miss ambitious emissions targets set for 2020, the electric-car jump has slimmer payoffs. In some cases, it could even worsen the overall climate impact of driving, experts say.

The dilemma highlights the crucial importance of clean electricity in global goals to slash greenhouse-gas emissions, the focus of a December summit in Paris. Cutting transportation-related emissions can help – but not if pollution is simply shifted from the tailpipes of cars to the smokestacks of coal-fired power plants, which generate 40 percent of the world’s electricity.

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Guest Post – My route to a lower power bill – Part 1

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I purchased a 3KW Micro Inverter Solar system from the sponsor of Map of the Day, What Power Crisis, back in March and now it’s been running for a while I thought I’d share my experiences over a few articles. Although What Power Crisis did me a decent deal on the system, I’m not being paid to write this.

I bought the system with 3 aims:

1) Cut my power bill which was heading towards $2800pa

2) Get payback on my investment within 10 years

3) Not make life miserable by compromising on comfort and convenience.

I’m not a believer in the great man-made global warming/climate change conspiracy so changes in CO2 emissions didn’t factor into my decisions. Even if this was a concern, much more than half of New Zealand’s generation already comes from renewable sources, so replacing one renewable source with another, especially as it has to be manufactured in the first place, no doubt using fossil fuels, won’t make that much of a difference in my book.

Having run the system since 25th March with an extra couple of panels added recently I’m on track to achieve my targets.

I never measured the power use before I embarked upon renovations so the $2800 is the before-solar cost of a renovated 60’s house, with a DIY solar-heated pool setup and a new well insulated small spa. I can’t quantify how much cheaper the house is to run per month due to the renovations, but it is much more comfortable than before with no mould or damp. We usually wear T-shirts all year round, and the lowest recorded temperature without heating in the living area is 16 degrees.

Cutting power use is the cheapest way to shrink a bill! ?? Read more »

UK wind turbines need national grid electricity to operate

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Yes, you read that right.

Off-shore wind turbines take power from the National Grid when not generating electricity, it has emerged.

They use electricity to keep their blades rotating slowly in cold weather to prevent them icing up and to power the systems which turn the blades into the wind.

It costs around twice as much to produce electricity using offshore wind than at traditional coal and gas-fired power stations.

But think about the?feel good factor!!

Read more »

Map of the Day

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Labour/Green Power Plan – “Crazy”

The CEO of Contact Energy has labelled the Green/Labour power policy “crazy”.

If Labour and the Greens imposed their proposed power policy Contact Energy would be forced into a complete restructure, chief executive Dennis Barnes says.

Earlier this year,?the parties announced plans to set up a single buyer, NZ Power,?to buy all electricity generation at a fair price, promising to cut the average New Zealander’s power bill by up to $330 a year.

Speaking to The Press after the company’s annual meeting in Christchurch today, Barnes said the policy would require a structural change for Contact’s business and the electricity industry.? Read more »

Useless dago renewable energy

Renewable energy all over the world over is showing that it is dead set useless…especially where it is heavily subsidised.

Spain is no different, their energy industry is in tatters as a result of renewable projects.

Years of disastrous policies, coupled with the economic crisis, have recast renewable energy in Spain. Once touted as the embodiment of progress, wealth and sustainability, the industry is now seen as an unwanted and costly extravagance.

The policy turnaround started in 2010 but picked up momentum with a government decree in July aimed at closing a widening gap between the cost of electricity generation and what consumers pay ? known as the tariff deficit.

The decree?s impact has all but erased public support for renewable power, raising alarms in the industry inside and outside Spain.

?We?ve gone from misery to ruin,? said Jaume Margarit, director of the Association of Renewable Energy Producers.? Read more »

Colin Espiner on Labour’s power policy

Colin Espiner is no friend of the government, but when he says this you know that Labour’s power policy is poos:

Has Labour actually gone insane? As in stark, raving, Monster Loony Party mad?

I’m assuming the answer is yes, judging by today’s incredulity-creating announcement that, if elected next year, Labour will essentially?nationalise the electricity industry.

The Opposition says it’s going to create a single buyer, NZ Power, that will buy all the country’s electricity generation “at a fair price” and then onsell it to consumers.

It’ll pretty much give away a 300KW bloc to every household and then charge for additional units.

At a stroke, Labour is proposing to dismantle the electricity market, ruin Contact Energy and Mighty River Power and decimate the Government’s share float plans for both MRP and Meridian. ? Read more »

Labour and Greens want Stalinist price controls on power

Labour and the Greens are committing economic sabotage in proposing Stalinist style state control of power prices.

It would be a disaster for private investors.. all those people with their savings in Contact and Trustpower shares (including Kiwisavers) would have their investment destroyed by their proposal.

Labour is promising to cut the average Kiwi power bill by up to $330 a year if elected to government.

It plans to do so by setting up a single buyer, NZ Power, to purchase all electricity generation at a fair price.

At a joint press conference Green co-leader Russel Norman outlined a similar policy, although the Greens would introduce an element of progressive pricing.? Read more »

Labour/Green co-press release on Electricity Generation

Via the Tipline:

NEW ZEALAND GREEN PARTY PRESS RELEASE

EMBARGO: Noon, Thursday 18 April 2013

In an unprecedented joint-policy statement between the Green Party and the Labour Party, Green Party co-leader Dr Russel Norman and Labour Party leader David Shearer announce that the next New Zealand government will claim back New Zealanders? electricity supply using a multi faceted strategy.

?New Zealanders are sick of seeing their power prices rise year after year. They are sick at seeing their power companies being sold off to foreign interests, and they are sick of seeing outdated methods of energy generation such as oil, coal and gas being used to create expensive electricity that pollutes the environment?, said Dr Russel Norman.

?It is time for new thinking in the electricity generation sector. With global warming driven droughts and floods, our hydro generation assets are becoming less reliable, and generating electricity by burning fossil fuel is costly, dirty and inefficient?.

?In New Zealand, we don?t just have a problem with economic power generation, but we also have the challenge where the generation of electricity is mostly done in the least populated part of Aotearoa, and then we have the challenge of transmitting it to the most populated parts via a tenuous cable that runs between Te Ika-a-Maui and Te Waipounamu (North and South Island)?.

?Today, the Green and Labour Parties announce our new Electricity Generation Policy based on Micro Nuclear Power generation. We intend to deploy modular, scalable Light Water Reactor nuclear power plant systems, each unit producing 45MW of electricity throughout New Zealand, starting where it is needed most: in Auckland?.

?The advantage of this system is that the plants are scalable, so a generation facility can have just have 1 unit, or as many as 24 units, depending on the demand for electricity, and the multimodule plants are highly reliable, so one unit can be taken out of service for refuelling or maintenance, or a new unit added without affecting operation of the others?.

?Fuel will be provided by the nuclear waste materials already collected from our hospitals and public and private research and engineering facilities. Until now, nuclear fuel pellets that are no longer viable for medical, research or engineering use have been stockpiled for bulk shipping to an overseas processing facility. The Micro Nuclear Power plants will utilise these pellets to generate electricity for our country?.

?Rivers can be returned to the wild, generation lakes can be returned to the land, and our people can once more enjoy the natural beauty of our country without the scars that hydro generation has caused to date?.

?In practical terms, the cost of electricity generation utilising Micro Nuclear Power generation will be approximately a third of what it costs using fossil fuels and expensive hydro transmission today, while at the same time using clean, safe nuclear power. The fact we can utilise nuclear fuel pellets that were previously wasted fits within our Green reduce, reuse, recycle philosophy.?

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Comparative electricity generation costs – New Zealand Green Party

?Nobody is scared to go to hospital because they use nuclear materials in their facilities. There have never been any accidents or incidents. It is this same, safe, efficient fuel that will power our homes and our industries?.

?We will be the envy of the world?, Dr Russel Norman added. ?People have been demanding we show them our ?Green Tech?, and today we are proud to lead New Zealand into a new and secure era of electricity supply?.

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