energy

Too much green energy could lead to sudden collapse of power grid

Monday, January 27, 2014 by: J. D. Heyes
Tags: green energy, power grid, electrical infrastructure

eTrust Pro Certified

Delicious Pin It
(NaturalNews) Renewable "green" energy is an admirable goal, and our country should strive to develop it as quickly as possible, but we've got a problem that needs addressing first: a power grid that is simply outdated, aging and in danger of becoming overwhelmed.

Plugging in automobiles by the tens of millions, coupled with powering the energy-hungry high-tech industry of the future will require a substantial investment in the infrastructure necessary to deliver the energy, experts increasingly say.

Fortunately, the problem has been identified, as reported by the Los Angeles Times:

In a sprawling complex of laboratories and futuristic gadgets in Golden, Colo., a supercomputer named Peregrine does a quadrillion calculations per second to help scientists figure out how to keep the lights on.

Peregrine was turned on this year by the U.S. Energy Department. It has the world's largest "petascale" computing capability. It is the size of a Mack truck.

Its job is to figure out how to cope with a risk from something the public generally thinks of as benign - renewable energy.


Too much for a 20th century grid

The discovery of electricity - or, more appropriately, the discovery of how to utilize electricity to power American growth - came with a daunting problem: how to get that electricity to the cities and towns, factories and businesses.

As America grew, so too did our patchwork of electrical grids. Today, the aging "grid" is held together tenuously, and energy officials worry quite a bit about how to keep "the massive patchwork of wires, substations and algorithms that keeps electricity flowing" stable, the Times reported.

A number of scenarios could put the grid on the fritz, big time, officials say. Such potentially devastating scenarios include cyber attacks, sabotage or a freakish storm.

But in the race by some states like California to bolster the use of wind, solar and geothermal power, those forms of alternative energy, as well as others, are creating new worries for energy officials.

The problem? Renewable energy places unprecedented levels of stress on a grid that was designed for 20th century America.

As noted by the Times:

Green energy is the least predictable kind. Nobody can say for certain when the wind will blow or the sun will shine. A field of solar panels might be cranking out huge amounts of energy one minute and a tiny amount the next if a thick cloud arrives. In many cases, renewable resources exist where transmission lines don't.

So, ecological concerns aside, we seem to have gotten ahead of ourselves in terms of the electrical infrastructure needed to handle these new technologies.

"The grid was not built for renewables," Trieu Mai, senior analyst at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, told the paper.

That said, it is not as if there is no effort to upgrade the current grid. In fact, as the paper noted, state and federal government officials who are concerned that the 20th century grid will hinder efforts to reduce greenhouse gases are investing billions of taxpayer and ratepayer dollars to "hasten the technological breakthroughs needed for the grid to keep up with the demands of clean energy."

What about energy storage? Expensive...

But it won't be easy - as anything worthwhile on this scale isn't. Building a green energy future will be "one of the greatest technological challenges industrialized societies have undertaken," says a group of Caltech scholars in a recent report.

The role of the nation's power grid is to ensure a steady, predictable flow of power. At every moment of every day, engineers work to carefully calibrate how much electricity to feed into the system as every electrical device - from a porch light to a factory machine - is switched on and off at all hours.

This requires painstaking precision, for at any moment an overload can bring the system crashing down.

One of the technologies being examined now involves the development of some kind of green energy storage device, which would allow energy to be distributed more evenly over time.

"Energy storage has the potential to be a game changer for our electric grid," California Public Utilities Commissioner Mark Ferron said.

The drawback? Dramatically higher utility bills.

Sources:

http://www.latimes.com

http://www.californiacitynews.org

http://ecowatch.com

Get breaking news alerts on GMOs, fluoride, superfoods, natural cures and more...
Join over four million monthly readers. Email privacy 100% protected. Unsubscribe at any time.


Have comments on this article? Post them here:

comments powered by Disqus

Take Action: Support NaturalNews.com

Email this article to a friend

Permalink to this article:

Reprinting this article: Non-commercial use OK, cite NaturalNews.com with clickable link.

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):
Most Popular
Today | Week | Month | Year

See all Top Headlines...



GET SHOW DETAILS
+ a FREE GIFT

Now Available at ShopNaturalNews.com

O3 Essentials OraJuvenate™
A powerful, cleansing dental cream for maximum oral/dental health.
New Cancer Solutions
Over 3 hours of content covering today’s best cancer tests, how to kill cancer cells and the best diets and exercise routines.
Freeze-Dried 100% Organic Whole Corn
Our freeze-drying method preserves taste, texture and nutrients better than any other food preservation method ever invented.
Fenix TK35 Flashlight
Tough, waterproof, extremely bright and it’s touted to throw an 800+ lumen beam more than 1,000 feet into the night.
Inca Treasure Smoothie Pack
This pack of our four most popular superfoods from South America is the perfect combo pack for smoothie lovers.
Pink Himalayan Salt
This salt delivers significant levels of magnesium, zinc and selenium, with trace levels of dozens of other elements.
Pinhole Glasses - Aviator Style
Pinhole glasses are becoming famous for helping people improve their vision without the risks of laser surgery.
Oxy-Rich Facial Serum
O3 Essentials Jojoba Oxy-Rich Facial Serum is cellular nourishment for your skin. Helps smooth fine lines while enhancing tissue elasticity.
Freeze-Dried 100% Blackberry Halves
Our freeze-dried blackberry halves are grown in Serbia under strict organic standards.

Also on NaturalNews:

Health Ranger Videos
Activist music
CounterThink Cartoons
Food documentaries
FREE Special Reports
Podcasts
Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Most Popular Stories

Flu shot kills 19-year-old, but vaccine industry still has total immunity against lawsuits
Here's a nutty fact: Eating more tree nuts lowers the risk of all-cause death by up to 20 percent
Six important facts you're not being told about lost Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 now clearly a government cover-up: All evidence contradicts official story
10 other companies that use the same Subway yoga mat chemical in their buns
BLM fracking racket exposed! Armed siege and cattle theft from Bundy ranch really about fracking leases
High-dose vitamin C injections shown to annihilate cancer
U.S. treating meat with ammonia, bleach and antibiotics to kill the '24-hour sickness'
USDA to allow U.S. to be overrun with contaminated chicken from China
Vaccine fraud exposed: Measles and mumps making a huge comeback because vaccines are designed to fail, say Merck virologists
Battle for humanity nearly lost: global food supply deliberately engineered to end life, not nourish it
Diet soda, aspartame linked to premature deaths in women

25 Amazing Facts About Food

This FREE downloadable report unveils a collection of astonishing and little-known facts about the food we eat very day. Click here to read it now...

 

Resveratrol and its Effects on Human Health and Longevity - Myth or Miracle.

Unlock the secrets of cellular health with the "miracle" nutrient Resveratrol Click here to read it now...

 

Nutrition Can Save America

FREE online report shows how we can save America through a nutrition health care revolution. "Eating healthy is patriotic!" Click here to read it now...

The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D

In this exclusive interview, Dr. Michael Holick reveals fascinating facts on how vitamin D is created and used in the human body to ward off chronic diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, mental disorders and more. Click here to read it now...

Vaccines: Get the Full Story

The International Medical Council on Vaccination has released, exclusively through NaturalNews.com, a groundbreaking document containing the signatures of physicians, brain surgeons and professors, all of which have signed on to a document stating that vaccines pose a significant risk of harm to the health of children. Click here to read it now...

Health Ranger Storable Organics

GMO-free, chemical-free foods and superfoods for long-term storage and preparedness. See selection at www.StorableOrganics.com



Recommended Resources On:

Natural News trends
Health Ranger news
Natural News GMOs
Mike Adams tracker
Natural News photos
Natural News Global
Natural News in focus
Natural News connect
Natural News shocking stories
Natural News radar
GMOs
Quackwatch
Vaccines
Health freedom
Dr. Paul Offit

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2014 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

eTrust Pro Certified Android app on Google Play

Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of NaturalNews.com, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source: Alexa.com)

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.