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Wave & Tidal Matters

dspp
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Wave & Tidal Matters

#80283

Postby dspp » September 10th, 2017, 7:33 pm

FT running a story that the Meygen units are in doubt as being told to compete with offshore wind. Exactly the concern I have often put forwards for this technology area, i.e. what added value does it really bring that cannot be more cheaply solved by other pathways.

"Developers of the MeyGen scheme in the Pentland Firth say they may switch their focus to France and elsewhere if, as they expect, their proposed £200m expansion loses out to offshore wind projects in the UK energy subsidy auction."

FT link is https://www.ft.com/content/24321f5a-956 ... e3f882dd7b if accessible to you. Scottis gov of course is complaining. Likely to be a planted story in advance of Monday capacity auction.

regards, dspp
Last edited by csearle on May 2nd, 2021, 10:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Subject change

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80313

Postby Nimrod103 » September 10th, 2017, 10:39 pm

dspp wrote:FT running a story that the Meygen units are in doubt as being told to compete with offshore wind. Exactly the concern I have often put forwards for this technology area, i.e. what added value does it really bring that cannot be more cheaply solved by other pathways.

"Developers of the MeyGen scheme in the Pentland Firth say they may switch their focus to France and elsewhere if, as they expect, their proposed £200m expansion loses out to offshore wind projects in the UK energy subsidy auction."

FT link is https://www.ft.com/content/24321f5a-956 ... e3f882dd7b if accessible to you. Scottis gov of course is complaining. Likely to be a planted story in advance of Monday capacity auction.

regards, dspp


After I got over choking on the words 'subsidy' auction' in the article, I read the comments. I thought the FT was the paper for risk taking businessmen, yet all the comments wanted big taxpayer subsidies. Given this enthusiasm for the technology, I would have thought MeyGen could have raised the capital and built a small prototype to test out the concept.

As for competing with wind power, IMHO the lunatics took over the asylum long ago. From today's Telegraph article, one of the comments below it:

We don't know the auction price yet, but it is likely to be around £105/MWh. But this is at 2012 prices, so at current prices about £115/MWh. This is nearly three times the market price, and all for intermittent power. How the naive Jillian Ambrose can say "lightening the load on energy consumers" is beyond satire

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80428

Postby UncleEbenezer » September 11th, 2017, 4:06 pm

A small prototype? The first four turbines have been operational since last year.

Geography says the UK should be world leader in tidal energy, and concentrating our best efforts on developing it. That applies to both private and public investment. Not just for the energy it could produce, but also for the 24/7 reliability that contrasts with weather-dependent generation.

Yet our government instead gives subsidies to lots of mature technologies. Most outrageously by failing to charge dirty fuels for the damage they do (compounded by breaks for things like fracking and north sea exploration). Most expensively by giving whopping subsidies to those rich enough to have a roof to put solar panels on. The latter has demonstrated in recent times the power of early-stage subsides to enable an industry to mature and bring down costs, though at a much higher unit cost and for much less potential payback than with tidal energy.

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80627

Postby jackdaww » September 12th, 2017, 1:02 pm

how about a nice motorway from newport to brean down , with a tidal barrage attached ?

:)

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80707

Postby tjh290633 » September 12th, 2017, 7:06 pm

jackdaww wrote:how about a nice motorway from newport to brean down , with a tidal barrage attached ?

:)


And goodbye to the Severn Bore.

The odds are that it will destroy most of the potential tidal flow (as was found with the Rance barrage).

:-(

TJH

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80733

Postby BreakoutBoy » September 12th, 2017, 9:35 pm

It is not at all clear that tidal is the answer for our energy problems. Silting will be epic, the costs huge and the environmental benefits dubious.

Far better to power-down by reducing demand than spend billions on new supply, in my view.

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80736

Postby Mark » September 12th, 2017, 9:41 pm

Does anyone have any thoughts about the potential tidal lagoon at Swansea Bay? I was an investor in the original EIS for this scheme, but have been mentally writing down the value of my holding to zero over the preceding few years...

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80747

Postby dspp » September 12th, 2017, 10:04 pm

I advised anybody who asked me not to invest in the lagoon schemes.

I am fairly sure their tech advisors ran scale model queries through my tech/econ models for free. Then flipped the results for a fee. Not good practice.

regards, dspp

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80776

Postby youfoolishboy » September 13th, 2017, 7:27 am

BreakoutBoy wrote:It is not at all clear that tidal is the answer for our energy problems. Silting will be epic, the costs huge and the environmental benefits dubious.

Far better to power-down by reducing demand than spend billions on new supply, in my view.


With every greenie in the country and even the governemnt talking about electric cars taking over from petrol ones in the near future powering down is not even on the agenda never mind feasible we have to scale up massively.

dspp
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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80792

Postby dspp » September 13th, 2017, 9:21 am

youfoolishboy wrote:
BreakoutBoy wrote:It is not at all clear that tidal is the answer for our energy problems. Silting will be epic, the costs huge and the environmental benefits dubious.

Far better to power-down by reducing demand than spend billions on new supply, in my view.


With every greenie in the country and even the governemnt talking about electric cars taking over from petrol ones in the near future powering down is not even on the agenda never mind feasible we have to scale up massively.


But scaling up must be done cost-effectively. The most cost-effective way is wind for at least the next decade. The Treasury gets this.

regards, dspp

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80800

Postby UncleEbenezer » September 13th, 2017, 9:45 am

Mark wrote:Does anyone have any thoughts about the potential tidal lagoon at Swansea Bay? I was an investor in the original EIS for this scheme, but have been mentally writing down the value of my holding to zero over the preceding few years...

Likewise.

I invested in part because it was (AFAIK) at the time the only remotely realistic option to invest in tidal energy, and because the man in charge had an impressive track record. Since then we've seen everyone but the loony wing of the Torygraph in favour[1], governments talk the talk[2] but kick it into the long kelp, and the board of the project itself turn its nose up at Chinese investment.

[1] Including notably the Hendry review, whose recommendations were strong and unambiguous.
[2] To the extent of featuring it in the 2015 Tory manifesto.

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80802

Postby tjh290633 » September 13th, 2017, 9:58 am

I think that the big mistake is to use tidal lagoons. Far better to use tidal flow turbines, like the Pentland Firth trial. They do not destroy the tidal flow, only make use of it.

TJH

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80806

Postby UncleEbenezer » September 13th, 2017, 10:03 am

BreakoutBoy wrote:It is not at all clear that tidal is the answer for our energy problems. Silting will be epic, the costs huge and the environmental benefits dubious.

Far better to power-down by reducing demand than spend billions on new supply, in my view.


OK, I'll bite.

Silting depends on the site: to a first-order approximation, it's an issue where the location is an estuary. General debris will have to be kept clear, but that seems to be a solved problem.

Costs will be high at first, as with any new technology. But nothing to compare with the unit cost of subsidising solar panels on rich peoples' roofs at the comparable stage of solar power development. Let alone the indirect costs of fossil fuels.

The environmental benefits come in two parts. The main one is that the alternatives are so much worse: once cleaned up, nuclear gets expensive, and fossil fuels simply can't run clean even if you believe the fairytale of carbon capture and long-term leak. The secondary ones come with specific schemes, like the Bridgewater barrage that will double up as a flood defence for Somerset (and one of the projects planned to follow after the smaller Swansea project has provided relevant experience).

Finally, while it's right that reducing demand should be the first priority, it's not an either/or, it's a both/and.

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#80810

Postby UncleEbenezer » September 13th, 2017, 10:09 am

tjh290633 wrote:I think that the big mistake is to use tidal lagoons. Far better to use tidal flow turbines, like the Pentland Firth trial. They do not destroy the tidal flow, only make use of it.

TJH

This thread is (or was originally) about the Pentland Firth.
RNS for the same story referenced: https://www.investegate.co.uk/atlantis- ... 59033370Q/

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#81110

Postby youfoolishboy » September 14th, 2017, 4:27 pm

youfoolishboy wrote:
BreakoutBoy wrote:It is not at all clear that tidal is the answer for our energy problems. Silting will be epic, the costs huge and the environmental benefits dubious.

Far better to power-down by reducing demand than spend billions on new supply, in my view.


With every greenie in the country and even the governemnt talking about electric cars taking over from petrol ones in the near future powering down is not even on the agenda never mind feasible we have to scale up massively.


but for wind power as I have pointed out on another thread you need 3 sites in different locations to get the rated output of one due to the wind not blowing all the time, this was from a wind power supplier one radio 4 not something I made up.. Not sure if that still comes in cheaper than nuclear however factor in the wind turbines are the new bete noir of Nimbies and you have a problem for any government wanting to keep votes. If they move it offshore the costs go up by another factor again. If we are to goto electric cars we need lots more power or we will be back in the same situation we are now after Labour refused to sanction nuclear whilst in government thus leaving it to the Tories, and eventually the consumer, to pay over the odds for a quick fix. The Tories I am guessing will pass on the decision as well though they are after all politicians with no concern of problems that do not fall in this parliament..

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#81125

Postby dspp » September 14th, 2017, 5:27 pm

youfoolishboy wrote: but for wind power as I have pointed out on another thread you need 3 sites in different locations to get the rated output of one due to the wind not blowing all the time, this was from a wind power supplier one radio 4 not something I made up.. Not sure if that still comes in cheaper than nuclear .


yfb,

- I fully believe you that the talking heads on R4 said 33% of the time. However they were wrong. I am an engineer and have worked in wind and marine current & hydro and for wind it is a capacity factor of 33% that is typical. It is quite likely that the talking heads were media graduates, or just had too little sleep, but in any case they were wrong.
- For tidal stream turbines capacity factor tends to be lower than for wind, typically 20-35%
- http://www.oceanenergycouncil.com/ocean ... al-energy/ & https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capacity_factor
- yes wind does still work out cheaper than nuclear, and these new lower prices are for offshore wind

regards, dspp

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#81158

Postby youfoolishboy » September 14th, 2017, 7:28 pm

dspp wrote:
youfoolishboy wrote: but for wind power as I have pointed out on another thread you need 3 sites in different locations to get the rated output of one due to the wind not blowing all the time, this was from a wind power supplier one radio 4 not something I made up.. Not sure if that still comes in cheaper than nuclear .


yfb,

- I fully believe you that the talking heads on R4 said 33% of the time. However they were wrong. I am an engineer and have worked in wind and marine current & hydro and for wind it is a capacity factor of 33% that is typical. It is quite likely that the talking heads were media graduates, or just had too little sleep, but in any case they were wrong.
- For tidal stream turbines capacity factor tends to be lower than for wind, typically 20-35%
- http://www.oceanenergycouncil.com/ocean ... al-energy/ & https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capacity_factor
- yes wind does still work out cheaper than nuclear, and these new lower prices are for offshore wind

regards, dspp


The talking head as I said in my post was someone who was in charge of a wind power suppler my exact words were 'this was from a wind power supplier' . He was being interrogated on the pros and cons of wind my impression was it had a place but the economics of it was being deliberately obscured from the general public. Never worked in wind but work in oil in gas in control systems and my degree is electrical and electronic with a specialty in high voltage so not naive.

dspp
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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#81161

Postby dspp » September 14th, 2017, 7:39 pm

youfoolishboy wrote:The talking head as I said in my post was someone who was in charge of a wind power suppler my exact words were 'this was from a wind power supplier' . He was being interrogated on the pros and cons of wind my impression was it had a place but the economics of it was being deliberately obscured from the general public. Never worked in wind but work in oil in gas in control systems and my degree is electrical and electronic with a specialty in high voltage so not naive.


Well he got it wrong. Happens to all of us.

I once got shutdown (ESD) testing wrong on an oil & gas field. Oh well ........

regards, dspp

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#128431

Postby Mark » March 27th, 2018, 7:12 pm

It appears as if there may be tiny signs of progress over the tidal lagoon at Swansea following a CFD offer to the government at the same cost as Hinckley Point and/or the Welsh government's offer to fund debt/equity. Not quite enough progress to wipe out my pessimism though!

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... clear-deal

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Re: Wave & Tidal Matters

#128518

Postby dspp » March 28th, 2018, 10:17 am

As the list of the supply chain constituents makes clear these projects are really all about getting a big pork barrel out for the civil construction industry. I remain highly sceptical.

regards, dspp


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