The Democrats’ Green New Deal calls for a fully renewable electric power grid. Regardless of the economic or political challenges of bringing this about, it is likely technologically impossible.
An electric power grid involves second-by-second balancing between generated supply and consumer demand. In the case of a sudden imbalance—such as from the loss of a generator’s output—all the remaining generators on the grid instantaneously pool together. Each one pitches in a small part of the required power to make up for the lost generator fast enough to keep supply and demand balanced.
How could the market price in the cost of providing rapid replacement energy that renewable sources can’t provide reliably? The entity that caused the outage should need to pay. Yet the power industry—to say nothing of the Green New Dealers—hasn’t given this much thought. An all-renewables power grid is destined to collapse.
- On February 21, 2019