Net-zero US carbon goal is unattainable – Washington Examiner

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The net zero emissions concept is once again exposed as a Hollywood-type fantasy. Regardless of whether carbon dioxide is seen as a credible climate problem or not, it just isn’t achievable in time.
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The goal of the U.S. government is to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, per the Paris agreement, says the Washington Examiner.

A three-step analysis establishes this as an impossible goal.

Three possible alternatives — wind, nuclear power, and utility photovoltaic solar (PV) — are analyzed separately in a three-step process to determine the amount of new capacity needed for any of them to meet net-zero carbon by 2050.

The same process then is used to determine whether any combination of the three can achieve the goal.

Step one determines the amount of new wind, nuclear, or PV capacity needed to replace all the electricity generated by fossil fuels in 2021.

A second step identifies the amount of each energy source needed to double the supply of electricity to meet demand when all light vehicles are battery-powered and homes use electricity for heating rather than natural gas. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory estimates that electricity consumption will nearly double from current levels to meet the added demand.

Finally, in the third step, we calculate the amount of each energy source needed to generate the electricity required to produce enough hydrogen to make steel and cement that meet net-zero carbon requirements. Producing steel and cement generates 14% of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions, with the use of hydrogen virtually the only way to eliminate these emissions. (Cement will also require carbon capture and sequestration to be fully net-zero carbon.)

Listed below are the amounts of new capacity for each power source that must be installed over the next 28 years for any one of them to achieve net-zero carbon.

995,141 new wind turbines rated at 2.5 megawatts (MW), or 35,551 units annually
881 new nuclear plants, or 31 annually
3,918,996 MW of new PV, or 139,954 MW annually
As a reality check, we researched the most capacity installed in one year since 2000 for each power generation method. The numbers are as follows:

5,680 wind turbines rated 2.5 MW
1 nuclear plant
21,500 MW of PV

A comparison of what is needed in new generation with historical data clearly shows the goal to be a physical impossibility. For example, installing 35,551 new 2.5-MW wind turbines every year far exceeds the 5,680 wind turbines ever installed in one year.

Larger wind turbines are being developed, but even 10-MW units would greatly exceed the number of units ever installed in one year.

Full article here.

via Tallbloke’s Talkshop

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