We have recently likened wind energy output to a polygraph test (with lies). Here is a real world example. So, why not build batteries to store the energy and prevent these fluxes? Stated by Stanford scientists below, “Batteries…consume more fossil fuels and therefore release more carbon dioxide over their lifetime…its overall contribution to global warming could negate the environmental benefits of the wind or solar farm.” The author was careful with his words, when he states COULD. Let’s be honest and replace that with WILL….
Why won’t wind energy power the future?In our original analysis, we considered why wind energy producers are unlikely to ever become independent of government subsidies that currently sustain them and stand on their own as a reliable source of power for ordinary consumers.But today, were going beyond that, because were going to directly address the single most important issue that will physically prevent wind energy producers from ever being more than a niche producer of energy consumed across the globe….
But the energy return on investment for the technologies that might be used to cleanly store the energy produced by wind power is far lower, which makes them undesirable to use with wind energy production. For for most of those options, it would actually make more sense, both environmentally and economically, to shut down production from wind energy rather than use these power storage technologies, like batteries, to store the energy produced from wind power.
As more and more renewables come online, large batteries have become more and more attractive as an energy storage option. But as with most developing technologies, they’re often expensive, and thus Stanford’s research focus.
The Stanford scientists examined the energy return on energy investment (EROI) ratios of using several technologies to store solar and wind energy. The EROI calculation is relatively simple – the amount of energy produced by a technology divided by the amount of energy required to build and maintain a storage system.
“Batteries with high energetic costs consume more fossil fuels and therefore release more carbon dioxide over their lifetime,” said lead author Charles Barnhart. “If the battery’s energetic cost is too high, its overall contribution to global warming could negate the environmental benefits of the wind or solar farm.”…