Australian Base Load Electrical Power – Week Ending 21st April 2018

Posted on Sun 04/22/2018 by

2


By Anton Lang ~

Week 42

This is the continuing Post, where each Saturday, I will detail the power consumption for the Base Load in Australia for the previous week. This will show what is actually meant by the term Base Load, and that is the minimum daily power consumption at its lowest point. Power consumption never falls below this point.

Here in Australia, that level of power is 18,000MW. (See data for the Running Weekly Average For Base Load below)

The Bayswater Coal Fired Power Plant In New South Wales

This data I have collated below is for this last week, and is for the five States connected to the Australian grids, every State east of the Western Australian border, and here I will show that data for each of those five States, New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania.

As you can see from these numbers, that huge amount of power is being supplied mainly by coal fired power, and on most days that coal fired power provides 80% or more of that level of power, at that time, when power consumption is at its lowest level, that total of 18,000MW.

All of this data is taken at a single point in time, and that is at 4AM of every day, when nearly all of us are sound asleep.

For the Introduction and background for this Base Load, refer back to the original Post at this link.

This is the permanent link to all the Posts with the data from each week.

For the purposes of this data, the sources are as follows.

Total Power consumption for each State

Fossil Fuel totals and Coal Fired power totals

Hydro Power totals

Wind Power totals

All these totals are from 4AM on each day, the time of minimum power consumption.

There are no coal fired power plants in South Australia or in Tasmania.

*****

Sunday 15th April 2018

New South Wales – 5780MW (Coal Fired Power – 3700MW)

Queensland – 5280MW (Coal Fired Power – 5100MW)

Victoria – 3420MW (Coal Fired Power – 3300MW)

South Australia – 810MW

Tasmania – 980MW

Total – 16270MW

Fossil Fuel – 12700MW (Total coal fired power – 12100MW  – 74.4% of the overall total of 16270MW)

Hydro – 1000MW

Wind – 3300MW (20.3% of the total)

Renewable power – 26.4% of the total.

Sunday Peak Power at 6PM – Total Power Consumption – 23810MW and Coal Fired Power supplied 17300MW (72.7%)

Monday 16th April 2018

New South Wales – 5720MW (Coal Fired Power – 3600MW)

Queensland – 5350MW (Coal Fired Power – 5100MW)

Victoria – 3560MW (Coal Fired Power – 3600MW)

South Australia – 960MW

Tasmania – 960MW

Total – 16550MW

Fossil Fuel – 13000MW (Total coal fired power – 12300MW  – 74.3% of the overall total of 16550MW)

Hydro – 1200MW

Wind – 2700MW (16.3% of the total)

Renewable power – 23.6% of the total.

Monday Peak Power at 6PM – Total Power Consumption – 26020MW and Coal Fired Power supplied 18000MW (69.2%)

Tuesday 17th April 2018

New South Wales – 6190MW (Coal Fired Power – 4500MW)

Queensland – 5430MW (Coal Fired Power – 5500MW)

Victoria – 3860MW (Coal Fired Power – 4400MW)

South Australia – 1120MW

Tasmania – 980MW

Total – 17580MW

Fossil Fuel – 15500MW (Total coal fired power – 14400MW  – 81.9% of the overall total of 17580MW)

Hydro – 1100MW

Wind – 1400MW (8% of the total)

Renewable power – 14.2% of the total.

Tuesday Peak Power at 6PM – Total Power Consumption – 25870MW and Coal Fired Power supplied 17800MW (68.8%)

Wednesday 18th April 2018

New South Wales – 6210MW (Coal Fired Power – 4400MW)

Queensland – 5510MW (Coal Fired Power – 5600MW)

Victoria – 4070MW (Coal Fired Power – 4400MW)

South Australia – 1060MW

Tasmania – 1090MW

Total – 17940MW

Fossil Fuel – 15700MW (Total coal fired power – 14400MW  – 80.3% of the overall total of 17940MW)

Hydro – 1200MW

Wind – 1200MW (6.7% of the total)

Renewable power – 13.4% of the total.

Wednesday Peak Power at 6PM – Total Power Consumption – 25530MW and Coal Fired Power supplied 17900MW (70.1%)

Thursday 19th April 2018

New South Wales – 6060MW (Coal Fired Power – 4600MW)

Queensland – 5320MW (Coal Fired Power – 5300MW)

Victoria – 4030MW (Coal Fired Power – 4400MW)

South Australia – 1070MW

Tasmania – 1010MW

Total – 17490MW

Fossil Fuel – 15800MW (Total coal fired power – 14300MW  – 81.8% of the overall total of 17490MW)

Hydro – 1200MW

Wind – 850MW (4.9% of the total)

Renewable power – 11.7% of the total.

Thursday Peak Power at 6PM – Total Power Consumption – 26260MW and Coal Fired Power supplied 17000MW (64.7%)

Friday 20th April 2018

New South Wales – 6190MW (Coal Fired Power – 4900MW)

Queensland – 5640MW (Coal Fired Power – 5300MW)

Victoria – 4050MW (Coal Fired Power – 4400MW)

South Australia – 1060MW

Tasmania – 1010MW

Total – 17950MW

Fossil Fuel – 16000MW (Total coal fired power – 14600MW  – 81.3% of the overall total of 17950MW)

Hydro – 1450MW

Wind – 850MW (4.7% of the total)

Renewable power – 12.8% of the total.

Friday Peak Power at 6PM – Total Power Consumption – 24610MW and Coal Fired Power supplied 17300MW (70.3%)

Saturday 21st April 2018

New South Wales – 5890MW (Coal Fired Power – 4700MW)

Queensland – 5440MW (Coal Fired Power – 5300MW)

Victoria – 3830MW (Coal Fired Power – 4400MW)

South Australia – 1080MW

Tasmania – 1010MW

Total – 17250MW

Fossil Fuel – 15200MW (Total coal fired power – 14400MW  – 83.5% of the overall total of 17250MW)

Hydro – 1500MW

Wind – 1000MW (5.8% of the total)

Renewable power – 14.5% of the total.

Saturday Peak Power at 6PM – Total Power Consumption – 23150MW and Coal Fired Power supplied 17000MW (73.4%)

*****

This Week’s Average For Base Load – 17290MW

This Week’s Average For Base Load Supplied from Coal Fired Power – 13786MW – 79.7%

Running Weekly Average For Base Load – 18007MW

Running Weekly Average For Base Load Supplied from Coal Fired Power – 14564MW – 80.9%

*****

This Week’s Average For Peak Load – 25036MW

This Week’s Average For Peak Load Supplied from Coal Fired Power – 17472MW – 69.8%

*****

Comments For This Last Week

It’s mid Autumn now, and as I have been saying over these last few weeks, this is traditionally the Season of the year for the lowest power consumption, as the heat has gone out of the Summer, and the cold of the Winter is yet to kick in. That is reflected in the data, as both the Base Load and Peak Power has fallen, much more so that Peak Power figure. That Peak Power average figure is around 4000MW to 5000MW lower than it is in Summer, while that Base Load figure (at 4AM) is only 1000MW to 1500MW lower. Because of that, and with reference both Summer and Winter, it’s obvious that with not so much power required during the Peak especially, then those large coal fired plants can close down individual Units at their plants for scheduled maintenance on a rotational basis, so that they are in their best possible condition when the higher Peak Power of Winter begins to kick in. There were times in the Summer just gone when just One Unit in the Country was off line during the week, and just for this week, the average was 7 Units off line. This requires careful planning in those three remaining States with coal fired power, incidentally, the three largest power consuming States in Australia. Individual plants must co-ordinate their maintenance closures with other plants, some not even in their own State, so that not too much power is taken out of the system, so an individual unit closure at one plant does not affect overall total power availability. Sometimes you can see one Unit coming back on line after that maintenance closure and not long after that, a Unit at another plants starts to wind back to its closure.

The total power removed from the overall grid this week was between 3420MW and 4730MW, which is quite a substantial amount of power to be removed from the grid, and now refer that back to the difference I mentioned above where Summer consumption was anything up to 5000MW higher, so that larger total is getting close to that Summer/Autumn difference for the Peak Power.

What it does do is to highlight an interesting exercise I will show you below.

The Difference Between The ‘Missing’ Coal Fired Power And Wind Power

Last week, I mentioned that for the Saturday, the last reporting day for that week’s data, it was as good as it ever gets for Wind Power, and the following day, the Sunday, the first day for this reporting week, Wind power again had a substantially good day for power generation.

So, in the form of an exercise, what I will do below is show you how Wind Power performed during these last seven days, only in reference to what I mentioned above, the Unit closures for maintenance at those coal fired plants for those same seven days. It’s a legitimate exercise, because it shows the relationship between wind power and coal fired power. For the purpose of this exercise, I will indicate the total power removed from the grid because of those coal fired power plant Unit closures for that day of the week, the average power supplied from wind power for that day, the high point for the day for wind power, and the low point for that same day for wind power, and also the amount of wind power supplied at the Peak Power time, and its percentage at that time

As you can see from each of the images below, they are shown with the date, from the Sunday at top left image, and then across the page and then, on the second row, the continuation of the week, with one fossil fuelled power image at bottom right. Now, while these images are small to fit across the page, if you click on each individual image, it will open on a new page in a larger size for ease of seeing the detail. With each of the Wind Power images, the black line indicates the total power generated, and, along the bottom, are the coloured lines indicating the power generated by each Wind Plant, and as you can see from the legend under each image, all the boxes for all the Wind Plants in the five States are ticked.

Wind Power Sunday 15th April 2018

Wind Power Monday 16th April 2018

Wind Power Tuesday 17th April 2018

Wind Power Wednesday 18th April 2018

 

Wind Power Thursday 19th April 2018

Wind Power Friday 20th April 2018

Wind Power Saturday 21st April 2018

Fossil Fuel Power Friday 20th April 2018

Firstly, open up the image for Fossil Fuel Power, the bottom right image there. Note the difference in scale for generated Power, and that is shown at the left vertical axis, and as you can see there the scale is so much larger. Now, while this image is for just the Friday 20th April, it is fairly generic for the whole seven day period, especially for the five working days of the week. Note that the minimum for this day here is 16,000MW, as indicated in the data above for the Friday. This shows the power being generated from all fossil fuelled sources, both coal fired power and Natural Gas fired power as well. On that Friday, coal fired power was delivering 14,600MW of that power, and that was 81.3% of the power which was being consumed at that time, 4AM on that Friday morning.

For all the Wind Power data, the total Nameplate for Wind Power is 4917MW.

Sunday 15th April

As for the day before, this was a big day for Wind power, but keep in mind this day, the Sunday, is the day of the week for lowest power consumption. The average Wind power generation for this 24 hour period was 3200MW. The High was 3600MW and the Low was 2900MW. At Peak Power time, 6PM, wind was delivering 3000MW and that was 12.6% of the power being consumed at that time. Total coal fired Units off line totalled 6 Units and 3420MW, so even on its best day for a while, Wind Power was still not replacing the missing coal fired power across this day.

Monday 16th April 2018

The average Wind Power generation for this 24 hour period was 2200MW. The High was 3200MW and the Low was 1200MW. At Peak Power time, Wind was delivering 1700MW, and that was 6.5% of the power being consumed at that time. Total coal fired Units off line totalled 6 Units and 3420MW. Wind was delivering on average just half of the missing coal fired power across this day.

Tuesday 17th April 2018

The average Wind Power generation for this 24 hour period was 900MW. The High was 1500MW and the Low was 250MW. At Peak Power time, Wind was delivering 800MW, and that was 3.1% of the power being consumed at that time. Total coal fired Units off line totalled 6 Units and 3420MW. Wind was delivering barely a quarter of the missing coal fired power across this day.

Wednesday 18th April 2018

The average Wind Power generation for this 24 hour period was 800MW. The High was 1550MW and the Low was 250MW. At Peak Power time, Wind was delivering 300MW, and that was 1.2% of the power being consumed at that time. Total coal fired Units off line totalled 6 Units and 3420MW. Wind was delivering less than a quarter of the missing coal fired power across this day.

Thursday 19th April 2018

The average Wind Power generation for this 24 hour period was 550MW. The High was 950MW and the Low was 50MW. At Peak Power time, Wind was delivering 200MW, and that was 0.8% (Huh! So, when electrical power is at the time of most need, all Wind Power can deliver is LESS than one percent) of the power being consumed at that time. Total coal fired Units off line totalled 8 Units and 4670MW. Wind was delivering less than one eighth of the missing coal fired power across this day.

Friday 20th April 2018

The average Wind Power generation for this 24 hour period was 600MW. The High was 1400MW and the Low was 100MW. At Peak Power time, Wind was delivering 560MW, and that was 2.3% of the power being consumed at that time. Total coal fired Units off line totalled 8 Units and 4670MW. Wind was delivering only one eighth of the missing coal fired power.

Saturday 21st April2018

The average Wind Power generation for this 24 hour period was 700MW. The High was 1450MW and the Low was 200MW. At Peak Power time, Wind was delivering 600MW, and that was 2.6% of the power being consumed at that time. Total coal fired Units off line totalled 8 Units and 4730MW. Wind was delivering only 15% of the missing coal fired power.

Weekly Average

The average Wind Power generation for week was 1280MW. So, with a total Nameplate of 4917MW, wind power was generating its power at a Capacity Factor of only 26% for this week. The year round average is close to 30%, so while wind has some good days, you can see that they are evened out by some truly awful days as well. The High for the week was 3600MW and the Low was 50MW. That low of 50MW is a Capacity factor of only 1%, effectively meaning that for EVERY wind tower in the Country only one in every hundred actually had its blades turning. At Peak Power time, Wind was delivering an average for the week of 1022MW, and that was only 4.1% of the average power being consumed at that time at a Capacity Factor of only 20%. Total coal fired Units off line was between 6 and 8 Units, averaging 3965MW. So, during this whole week, Wind, as a whole total was only delivering just less than one third of the coal fired power which was missing from those closed Units.

There may be some people (ardent wind power supporters probably) who would say that this is not really a valid exercise, but it is in fact indicative. It effectively shows that wind power has virtually no effect whatsoever on coal fired power, on when those Units can close down for maintenance, on the power actually being generated by coal fired power, (at any time of the day) and the overall impact of wind power on what is actually required for consumption from the grid.

Again, all this whole thing does is indicate that when it comes to coal fired power, there really is no substitute.

Anton Lang uses the screen name of TonyfromOz, and he writes at this site, PA Pundits International on topics related to electrical power generation, from all sources, concentrating mainly on Renewable Power, and how the two most favoured methods of renewable power generation, Wind Power and all versions of Solar Power, fail comprehensively to deliver levels of power required to replace traditional power generation. His Bio is at this link.

OzBaseLoadTFO