Keen to reduce carbon emissions and promote clean energy, Denmark committed significantly to wind power. The program has helped saddle Danish consumers with the highest home electricity costs in the European Union (EU).
Proponents of wind power boast that 20% of Danish electricity is generated by wind. However, more than half of that over the last five years was created when unneeded. Since it cannot be stored, resulting surplus power was exported to Sweden and Norway at substantially less – sometimes zero – than prices guaranteed to Danish wind operators. Good for Swedes and Norwegians; bad for Danes. Good for power operators; bad for consumers.
When the wind wasn’t blowing according to needs, Denmark imported balancing power from Norway and Sweden, at substantially higher costs.
If this sounds familiar, it fits the scenario painted by Rafe Mair and others about Run of River power agreements foisted on BC Hydro by the Campbell Crime Family. Damien Gillis of the Save our Rivers Society wrote:
. . . the majority of the power these private river projects produce comes in spring – when our public dams are full and demands at their lowest, meaning that all this private power will be for export. Only here’s the kicker: since we’re being suckered into paying two to three times the market rate for this power, we will have to flip it to our neighbours at a loss, driving up our power bills and taxes as BC Hydro goes from making a profit for the people of BC to being a drain on our province and economy.
Good for Americans; bad for Canadians. Good for power operators; bad for consumers.
From the report: Wind Energy – the Case of Denmark
Costs of balancing wind power across the inter-connectors
Earlier in the document, we discussed how the stability of the Danish grid is maintained by the constant use of the “electricity storages” of Norway and Sweden, as electricity flows through the inter-connectors, keeping the balance between supply and consumption constant within the Danish systems.
Each MWh of power generated from wind turbines that gets exported, carries away the subsidy that caused it to be generated. The price obtained for this by the Danish generators is, on average, the spot price. Any difference between the real cost of generating and its sale on the spot market is not a material consideration for the wind generators who are compensated retroactively when the spot price is low.
But for the Danish householder who is paying the subsidy in order to save imported fuel and CO2 emissions, the subsidy so exported brings no direct benefit at all. The total probable value of exported subsidies between 2000 and 2008, was DKK 6.8 billion (€ 916 million) during this period.