Germany Forced To Pay Consumers To Use More Electricity

Tyler Durden's picture

A stormy weekend led to free electricity in Germany, as Bloomberg reports wind generation reached a record, forcing power producers to pay customers the most since Christmas 2012 to use electricity.

Power prices turned negative as wind output reached 39,409 megawatts on Saturday, equivalent to the output of about 40 nuclear reactors.

 To keep the grid supply and demand in balance, negative prices encourage producers to either shut power stations or else pay consumers to take the extra electricity off the network.

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LetThemEatRand's picture

But how many birds died, said everyone who is looking for some reason to be against wind power. Energy independence from NWO oil oligarchy is "homeland security."  Or in this case, "Motherland Security."

Arnold's picture

Global Warming Benefits Germans One Day a Year.

Many windmills go off line during high winds. Their dispersed capacity must be incredible.
Storage to smooth it out, they might have a viable thing going until useful lifetime replacement.

Global Douche's picture

You're among the FEW I've encountered who understand that! In the wind industry, many call that "faulting out" where you'll notice the blades are no longer pitched at an angle to rotate, instead they're directly into the wind and the term for that is "vaning" as in a wind vane.

Storage is possible. The best examples I've heard of are those few turbines whose energy is used to pump water into an upstream reservoir, then use hydroelectric generation from what was stored.

zvzzt's picture

Creating hydrogen as a 'battery' is interesting as well. Main problem being storage due to risks and particle size. Just a matter of time until something effective is found and then, indeed, forget the NWO and SandSuckers in the middle east. 

Watson's picture

I wonder if anyone has ever compared the cost of building an artificial hill near the wind turbine,
to put a reservoir on top of.

In a flat plain, probably pretty expensive...until compared with the total lifetime (including decommissioning) cost of a nuclear plant.
And which technology is simpler, and better understood...


Utopia Planitia's picture

I hope you are happy having e- only when the wind is blowing hard.  Kind of negates the entire reason for having any.

Provocateur's picture

Maybe they could just put a big rubber band inside the pole and the generator at the bottom.



theprofromdover's picture

Energy storage is the biggest deal, and they really aren't doing anything significant about it.

They generate power to over-satisfy the demand (if they didn't you'd get power cuts), and flush it all down the toilet.

Until the next big thing comes along every country with mountains should be building giant reservoirs and pumping water uphill with their over-capacity. When they are short, gravity will run the turbines.

It is very simple, convert your energy into something reversible at a later date, would be interesting to know what percentage of generated energy is just thrown away.

Nikola Tesla the original) was the just the guy, and Edison destroyed him.


kellys_eye's picture

They should use excess wind-generated electricity to back-feed normal generators that can reverse-convert electricity back into fossil fuels.

Well, if people are gullible enough to believe cAGW and the 'benefits' of green energy - they'll believe THIS explanation too.

Oldwood's picture

Turbines should be mounted ?on towers that incorporate massive weights that can use electric motors powered by surplus energy to raise these weights storing energy. When wind fails these weights can be released to energize the turbine's generators. Rather than building massive reservoirs holding water at elevation, this can be done incrementally just as turbine's are now, not all eggs in singular large baskets. And zero risk to people through dam breakage or all the consequential costs of battery manufacture, operation and disposal.

Teja's picture

Although the technical idea is valid, and has been implemented in millions of Cuckoo Clocks in the last few hundred years, I doubt if it will work cost-wise, as the towers need to be more robust for this. 

Another idea would be to add a remote controlled electrical heating element to gas water heaters. Modern gas heaters have some level of remote control anyway (maybe not in the US, not sure). 1 million 1000W heaters would generate a good load to take up the unneeded power. Special price for this heating electricity needed, of course.

Utopia Planitia's picture

Actually you can do that, though it is quite complex and not very efficient.  Would keep many chemists and engineers off the street, though!  :-)

malek's picture

Really, so you heard.

Now point us to where in Germany they should place the dozens of Lake Mead sized reservoirs needed, genius.

Global Douche's picture

You know, way more birds die from cats. I drive through the Texas Panhandle often and most go the 75 mph speed limit while many push 90. THONK!! There goes another bird, feathers and all from hitting either the grill or windshield. At that speed on two-lane roads, if they make one wrong move, they're history. I had a windshield replaced 2 years back from a direct strike on I-40 near Yukon.

pcrs's picture

It does not replace oil. Heating and transportation are the big energy users, home electricity use is nothing. 

But Germany also uses a ton of coal in case there is no wind

effendi's picture

With the move to electric cars and trucks the storage capacity of their batteries will soak up any peaks in wind power and the variable nature of powerfrom the wind, the waves and the sun will be less of an issue.

J2nh's picture

In your dreams.  

Not enough battery capacity and that leaves the choice of powering the grid or transportation.  This is an anti science and engineering answer.

And where are those batteries going to come from?  Are you familiar with the devastation that comes from Cobalt mining?  The massive mining involved in recovering Rare Earths for wind turbines?  The cost?

miszczuk's picture

Production at the wrong place, wrong time and wrong quantity. Sounds like socialist paradise? Yes, and on top I have to pay 100% more as in France which is 30 miles away from where I live. On on top of that comes the additional dependence of the NWO green oligarchy. Additional because sometimes the wind doesn't blow for several days and that makes a second grid necessary.

Flankspeed60's picture

Yup - Not sure just how France escaped the wrath of the Greenies long enough to do it - but they're 80% nuclear power, 20% 'other.' Here in the US, it's 20% nuke, 80% 'other,' which includes lots of natural gas, diminishing coal, and a microscopic level of wind/solar. In the Southern states under Tennessee Valley Authority, residential rates are ten cents/kwh, which is approx. 50% higher than it was ten years ago. TVA is a major nuke power producer.

Teja's picture

Thats because nuclear power is massively subsidized. Radioactive waste which has to be managed over 10'000s of years, who is paying for that? Uranium mining also highly energy intensive, and at least as dirty as rare earth mining. And "peaceful" nuclear power is one of these ideas where you doubt the brain of some people - too easy to use the technology to go a step further, see NK, Iran and others.

Also, new nuclear power plants tend to be extremely expensive, thats why they are so rarely built these days, in western countries. Old French, Belgian and German reactors mostly at or over the end of their planned lifetime. Try to obtain electronics spare parts for a 40 years old museum piece. Try to get bright young people to start a career there... and avoiding those with certain backgrounds. Reality check, anyone?

Just waiting for the next Fukushima, hopefully far enough from Berlin.

RafterManFMJ's picture

Are you thinking what I’m thinking?! GERMANY IS THE PLACE TO MINE BITCOIN! Get paid to use the electricity to power your mining TRS-80!

Common_Law's picture

The winds of space-time blow like this forever.

Aka- spintronics / Zeropoint energy / energy from the Vacuum / Spin connection resonance (Einstein Cartan Evans UFT)

Global Douche's picture

This sounds like the perfect place to mine BTC or LTC. Use enough mining rigs and you don't even need a heater to keep your house warm all through the Winter! Makes me wish I were back in Luebeck.

rpc's picture

Merkel's socialism at it "best" until running out of other peoples money. It is not producers who are paying the bill, they have fixed prices per kWh, but the German private power consumers thru always higher "green energy extra charges", making energy prices in Germany the highest in the world.

bidaskspread's picture

"Weekend" key word, just like solar and the duck curve.

Wile-E-Coyote's picture

40 GW one day, nothing the next when the wind fails, oh I know you can buy more gas from Putin.........oh wait.

All those electric car owners standing around with a plug in their hand scratching their arse when the charger says NO.

Posa's picture

Well no... that's why the Germans are building more dirty coal plants... that's the acftual, reliable generating capacity on which the Green Energy ornaments are built... two power systems, of course are a lot more expensive than one... ths the high prices (and CO2 emissions) that plague the German electric power grid.

Debugas's picture

Germans need to build more hydro-accumulation power plants to smooth electricity usage

Byte Me's picture

Those tend to be "environmentally unfriendly" and get the Greenies and Snowflakes triggered.


has been tested and building a fleet of these could go some way to helping out...

Personally, I'd be interested in the 'domestic' version (suitably safeguarded against unpleasant failure modes)

oncemore's picture

The gap is huge1W used in the net means 5W installed

FlKeysFisherman's picture

Put one of those wind turbines in front of Maxine Waters' mouth.

Song_Of_Roland's picture

This made just about no dent in my incredibly high electrical bill, which is odd because we barely even have our tv on and we use one of those low-power, EU-mandated vacuum cleaners that will save the world.

Most people I know are consuming less (heating/electricity) because it simply costs too much. 

Posa's picture

Which, like carbon taxes, is exactly the point... freeze in the dark to appease the forces of Climate Change

UndertheDRADIS's picture

Cold in winter, hot in summer. I wonder how comfortable Al Gore is living.

Spectre's picture

Soundslike a great place for a BTC mining operation if KW's are free ......

Fer137's picture

With the average price double or triple than other european countries, due that "renevable" scam

Posa's picture

Germany is fast becoming an Object Lesson for the rest of the world... so is Australia where brownouts and blackouts have crippled the region at the worst times of the year... the same is inevitable in Germany... just rewards for Green Malthuisian fanatics on top of high prices.

Fer137's picture

This seems wind-marketing, or german stupidity, since they can turn off the mills (as they often do in adverse weather conditions) instead of paying to keep them connected.

Juliette's picture

Actually ZH got sth. wrong there:

No "customer" in Germany is getting paid for "using electricity", under no conditions. Prices are high as the sky, with 30 €-cent per kWh - that is about 36 USD-cent ...  Who gets electricity for free or is even paid for it then? Only the neighbour countries! CZ, FR, PL etc. So Germany fucks its own people in the ass with "renewables" and gives the neighbour countries a free ride.

bankbob's picture

Germans spent almost a Trillion EURO on wind and solar and prices climbed by 300%.

Shuttering their nuke plants also lead to more coal burning.  Total emmissions climbed.

Liberaldisdain's picture

They get everything wrong, no suprise. Thanks for the actual facts. 

aliens is here's picture

Good milk the kraut fkers. They love their wind and rapefugees.

bankbob's picture

Overproduction is the biggest problem with wind energy.  When the wind blows too hard too much energy is generated which blows out the grid.  Germany's 30 year electrical grid is degrading in only 7 years.

They used to dump excess on Poland and the Csechs until those countries built giant $100 million dollar capacitor banks to interrupt the flow.

snblitz's picture

When the wind blows too hard the windmills must stop to keep the tips of the blades from exceeding the speed of sound and disintegrating.

SantaClaws's picture

Gemany's clean electric energy system was likely designed by VW's clean diesel software geniuses.

Red Raspberry's picture

Pumped storage is used quite a bit now as a means to store excess energy.  The real problem here is the wind operators get paid a flat fee for what's generated with no incentive to shut down the wind generators when the need is not there.

If they sell into the wholesale market this problem disappears.


snblitz's picture

I have been 80% solar since 1998.

However, I am a proponent of the Thorium nuclear cycle and Molten Salt Reactor technology.

I would prefer Thorium backed solar to Oil/Gas backed solar.

And believe it or not, solar is just too expensive, though I like the distributed nature.

Everything you ever wanted to know about Thorium and MSR technology:

And Thorium is not just some wild theory. Thorium based reactors have been built and operated in the past.

Sapere aude's picture

It shows how ridiculous the idea of renewable energy is. It isn't FREE energy. It is highly subsidised energy that then has to be given away FREE to some but rarely consumers benefit.

In the UK for example they paid 48p per KW to some installations index linke and guarantee for 25 years, and allowed users to keep the electricity for their own use or put into grid.

So when recently energy costs were MINUS 1.9p per KW hour in the day, no consumer benefited. Only the producer and even then only because of subsidy.

Without that what producer would invest in renewable energy for negative returns, so the free market is turned on its head, and the constant attack on hydrocarbons.

At the same time taxes from hydrocarbons that have propped up treasuries are ceasing....causing a double whammy of trouble, in terms of subsidised renewables and in terms of tax loss.

But in the real world what producer would pay for turbines/solar if there is going to be a negative return?