AEIdeas

The public policy blog of the American Enterprise Institute

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Discussion: (3 comments)

  1. This is a very limited and uneducated view, presented in a “parrot”-fashion.

    The worst part is the last comment:
    “Catalina Schröder, the author of the Der Spiegel article, tries making lemons into lemonade by pointing out that backup-power providers are doing a lot more business, but of course, this is “broken windows” thinking: ultimately the cost of power redundancy comes out of the consumer’s pocket.”

    This comment by a “Free Enterprise”-Blog author showcases such a distored and brainwashed understanding of how a market works, that it makes one want to vomit. It seems that the AEI believes that electricity has to be generated in a soviet style vertically aligned monopoly market in which only the peoples power company provides services.

    The reality in Germany is far from the American over regulated power-dictatorship, that basicly prohibits competition on a meaningful scale. Go figure what this Blog is about… it certainly isn’t thoughtful and timely analysis.

  2. Well Thomas, perhaps in your unlimited knowledge and education you can tell us why the German power grid voltage is not keeping up? That is the point of this story after all.

    1. The point of the article on this site is to denounce the expansion of renewable energy capacity by quoting articles and adding qeustionable comments in order to spin bits of information. The story that is hijacked for that goal is on power grid stability in Germany.

      While I am certainly not blessed with infinite knowledge, but it’s enough to notice that on first sight. But since you asked, I will take a minute to explain the situation:

      Since the US has no significant solar capacity and alot more grid-stability issues than Germany, it would seem rather ill advised to blame changing production patterns for grid problems.

      Just like in the US, the current (rather insignificant) grid problems in Germany are a consequence of insufficent investments in power grid infrastructure over the course of the last decade.

      From 2000-2010 TSOs have not adequatly expanded the transmission grid. This has to do with the fact that the four TSO areas of Germany were under the direct control of the four big energy corporations (E.On, RWE, Vattenfall & EnBW) that controll centralized power stations but almost no renewable energy capacity.

      The resulting weakness of the grid effects mainly energy intensive companies (like the one in the story) that are connected to the high voltage power grid.

      Photovoltaic & windpower aren’t directly connected to the high-voltage power grid.
      In fact 85% of all PV-Capacity is connected to the low voltage power grid. Windpower and solar parks are usually connected to the distribution network operated by DNOs. These power grids have been significantly expanded since the year 2000.

      Can you explain to me how solar power connected to the 220V grid in Bavaria and seperated by several transformer stations effects an alluminium company in northern Germany that is connected to the 380kV grid?

      The truth is:
      It doesn’t and the reason for these mikro-glitches effecting energy intensive companies has all to do with the transmission grid being unprepared to distribute the electricity produced by coal & gas in the west/east or rare windpower surplusses from the north.

      Just like with all blackouts of this century, E.On & RWE are to blame because of mismanagement due to lack of investments in grid upgrades.

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