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Letters to the Editor

Sat., Jan. 18, 2014

Coal bails out renewables

German power suppliers are in frenzy. Why? In December, Germany’s cold, windless, overcast winter returned. Result: “Germany’s wind and solar power production was consistently near nonexistent. More than 23,000 German wind turbines stood still for days. One million photovoltaic systems, subsidized by consumers to the tune of 108 billion Euros, stopped work nearly completely and delivered a few kilowatts briefly during lunch. For the whole week, coal, nuclear and gas plants generated an estimated 95 percent of Germany’s electricity supply.” (Dec. 24 – Die Welt)

Coal is correcting Germany’s renewable mistake, with 23 new coal plants coming. Spain was first to see its renewables blunder, but the coal revival fever swells Europe-wide.

Never mentioned in the rush to win billions in renewable subsidies, is that wind and solar require backup from coal, gas or nuclear plants; meaning duplicate power-generating systems without which electrical blackouts are guaranteed. Is this Washington’s Renewable Electrical Standard’s path?

Initiative 937 (2006) mandates 15 percent of electricity will be from renewable sources. Is Washington prepared for when renewable power fails for a week, like Germany’s? Can hydro save you from RES? Was I-937 a mistake? You will know when the lights go out.

David Boleneus

Spokane



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