This essay by David Stevenson of the Caesar Rodney Institute Center for Energy & Environment appeared in May, but I just ran across it today. It analyzes data from the PJM electrical grid, America’s largest, between 2019 and 2021.
This comparison of actual regional grid carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions between 2019 and 2021 shows increased use of wind and solar did not reduce emissions. Wind and solar electric generation are actually poor technologies no one would use without permanent government mandates and massive subsidies and taxes that are adding $1 billion a year in power cost. They are also unreliable, non-recyclable, have negative environmental impacts, have shorter productive life spans than alternative power sources, and take up a lot of ground. If it doesn’t reduce carbon dioxide emissions why are we using wind and solar?
The intermittency of wind and solar power generation means that other, reliable sources have to cycle up and down, repeatedly. This decreases efficiency and increases emissions. Thus:
Coal emissions should have fallen the same 7% generation did, but only fell about half as much as power plant efficiency fell.
Overall, CO2 emissions declined only 0.8%. As I understand the data, this suggests that CO2 emissions would have declined more if there had been no wind or solar on the PJM grid.
This lack of CO2 reduction by wind and solar comes at a high cost. Tax payers and electric customers provide expensive subsidies totaling almost $2 billion in the 2020-21 period, or $1 billion a year.
Wind and solar energy are entirely pointless, if you don’t consider the fact that enormous amounts of money are changing hands. You and I pay more in electricity rates and taxes, while the Communist Chinese and a handful of Americans and Europeans make out like bandits.