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December 26, 2007

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NO HOPE FOR SOLAR ENERGY

Because the electricity produced by solar energy sources fluctuates it can not replace conventional power sources: fossil fuel, nuclear, hydroelectric, etc., no matter how cheap it becomes. This is because it can not be fed directly into the electrical grid except in token amounts since there's no way to store its energy to smooth the fluctuations. This is true of most alternative energy sources.

For example, Northern Europe produces a large amount of wind energy but most of it is used to pump water into lakes behind hydroelectric plants in Norway. The electricity from these plants is exported back to Nothern Europe vis a special high-voltage DC underwater cable between Norway and Denmark.

It is significant that Germany plans to build 15 coal-fired power plants by 2012 because coal power is cheaper than natural gas power and, of course, wind energy power. This even though coal burning produces horrendous amounts of carbon dioxide which is thought to cause global warming.

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