Wind Power is reliable because it’s always blowing somewhere

Myth-busters #3

Data is made available by Elexon for power generation from various sources (coal, gas, nuclear and so on) including wind. This set covered some 4000 half hour periods in early Autumn 2012.

This is the electrical power generated per half hour by wind turbines. The red line is the median.

WindPowerHalfHour

That doesn’t look reliable, does it? Some days there are huge peaks but most of the time it looks like there is very little power generated. You can bet the wind industry points to the success of wind power on those rare days when production is at it’s peak.

Let’s look at this differently. We’ll count the number times the wind power is generated in a certain range. This is very revealing.

WindDistributionTable

Now it’s very clear that most often there is very little power generated and you need to run the power stations almost full blast MOST OF THE TIME!

The oddest thing is the one stated aim of the government is energy independence.  Clearly this is not the way to get it.

Busted!

PS: Here is the data for 2014, to date. Note the total power has doubled in just two years and we are still no closer to energy independence.wind_2104.

 

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