Excellent news!

Austria’s largest state said Thursday that 100 percent of its electricity is now generated using renewable sources of energy.

Woo Hoo! Let’s get with the plan, eh?

The state in northeastern Austria now gets 63% of its electricity from hydroelectric power, 26% from wind energy, nine percent from biomass and two percent from solar.

Lead on McDuff!

So, which valleys do we flood?

No one will miss South Wales, so that’s a good start, if we damn the Clyde then that’s Glasgow gone, a twofer, where else?

What’s that? We’re not allowed to build dams because they’re not ecological?

20 thoughts on “Excellent news!”

  1. Bloke no Longer in Austria


    Niederoesterreich used to get >80% of its power from Hydro.
    If you drive along the flatlands towards Hungary, one sees nothing but windmills. The population of NOe is only about 1 1/2 million, though.

    Annoyingly I haven’t kept any of my old bills, so I can’t tell you what I used to pay ( big house very expensive gas usage).
    My flat in Vienna comes in about 12 cents/kWh, but there are a lot of standing charges and 20% VAT on top.

    Up the road from where I used to live, the national oil company OMV had discovered a shale gas field to supply Austria for 30 years, but the government put so many hurdles in the way, that they walked away from it.

  2. The South Wales point is fair enough, but damming the Clyde wouldn’t catch Glasgow, alas. The way to deal with Glasgow is to dig a deep ditch around it, and then declare the city to be part of the province of Northern Ireland.

  3. @Emil: Well in that case at that given point they’re getting 100% of the electric from hydro and biomass, so why bother with the extra expense of building all those bird mincers and countryside eyesores? If hydro and biomass can provide 100% of the electric requirement if required, why not require it all the time?

  4. Well in that case at that given point they’re getting 100% of the electric from hydro and biomass, so why bother with the extra expense of building all those bird mincers and countryside eyesores?

    Because water doesn’t flow downhill at night.

  5. Tim Newman is only masquerading as an oil company executive. He is, in reality, one of the dwarves that JRR Tolkien lent to the CEGB to build the Dinorwig hydroelectric power storage unit where water flows uphill at night-time.
    The project was planned in the early 70s and started in 1974 but the Labour government insisted on using a unionised human workforce so by the time the Conservatives gained power in 1979, only 60ft of the tunnels had been dug, just enough for the workers to be out of sight of the architect while they had a smoke. MacAlpine, run by a distant cousin of the Conservative Party Treasurer (who worked for a different company called MacAlpine) were keen to hire the non-union labour and the dwarves completed the tunnels in less than half the scheduled time so that the machine hall could be fitted out in the early 1980s.

  6. Bloke no Longer in Austria

    TimN is right.

    The gravitational pull of the moon means that water is dragged back upwards and has to be pumped downhill thus using up all the energy that would have been created by the windfarms.

  7. The grauniad was crowing about Denmark generating 100% of leccy demand from wind. Once. On an unusually windy day. Well, possibly night. Before 3am, anyway.

    Conveniently provided a link to a site showing current production and import/export of Danish leccy. Showing they were importing 5x wind output during the day.

    Seems impossible for anyone to be that clueless, but I honestly can’t tell anymore.

  8. In British Columbia the electricity company is actually called BC Hydro (not the slightest bit confusing to non-residents).
    Electricity cost is significantly lower than the UK.
    Funnily enough there is a dispute rumbling on over a proposed new dam. Always liked the expression in a dystopian novel that referred to a goulash of renewables

  9. @BiND
    I went to school with a lot of the children of those moved out when Treweryn was flooded (my bus route home ran pretty much round it). To say it still rankles is an understatement. I can quite understand why – losing your home where your family has lived for generations, and your land that said family has farmed for as long, (I also went to school with several people whose surname matches the valley their family farms), in return for a 60s council style house on a little estate and a bit of cash because of some Liverpudlian beaurocrat’s whim is pretty outrageous.
    And that’s before considering the attack it represented on almost the last monoglot Welsh community remaining.
    Also in the area was a Magnox nuclear reactor that came off line in the late 90s, built in the same era as Treweryn was flooded. Funnily enough, the only compliant I’ve ever heard about that about that was that they didn’t build a replacement, and that was despite it being a huge concrete eyesore in the middle of a beautiful area.

  10. In British Columbia the electricity company is actually called BC Hydro

    Quite a common Canadianism, actually: Ontario Hydro, Quebec Hydro, Manitoba Hydro… Boy, was I confused when I started to hear about Norsk Hydro…

  11. Tidal power is reliable, predicable, and redundantable (is that a word?) As long as the moon stays in the sky you will always be able to get 8 hours of generation twice day, and when your station isn’t generating you cover the gap with another one on the other side of the country.

    So, when’s that Severn Barrage going to be built then?

  12. Euan Mearns had a good post a while back on tidal a while back, basically he ran the numbers and concluded it was going to be expensive, and there wasn’t enough variation in tide timing in the UK for it to become baseload. Generally, his blog is worth reading for his technical analysis – he’s done a lot of number crunching of various energy sources, and thus actually adds light rather than heat to energy policy debate.

  13. Jgh tidal power is also dependent upon putting components into a marine environment, which is very hostile to electronic devices, and subject to the destructive forces of waves. The maintenance costs would probably outweigh any electricity generated.

  14. Pingback: Yes, It’s Called ‘Reality’… | Orphans of Liberty

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