Australia / New Zealand
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Germany has 18,300MW (megawatts) of installed wind capacity -- close to half Australia's total installed electricity generation capacity, about double Victoria's.
E.ON Netz draws on 7600MW of that.
In the precise German way, it tells us that maximum feed-in was 6234MW at 9am on 15/12/05.
Sound great? Except when you read the minimum feed in, at 12.15pm on 27/05/05. Just 8MW. And no, I'm not missing a nought or two.
Some 7600MW of installed capacity delivered just 8MW. When the wind don't blow, the electricity don't flow.
On average across the year, the 7600 MW of installed wind capacity produced 1327MW. That's an operational level of 18 per cent of capacity. In rational terms, it's insanity.
Now we have reports that investors are pulling out of wind projects in Victoria. The issue continues to be plagued by lots of investment uncertainty and while that continues to be the case, wind power is unlikely to take off here.
Would you want a wind farm next to you? What would it take to win your support? Do we need them, or are there better alternatives, both for investors in renewable energy and for the community?