World is bombarded with solar energy

World is bombarded with solar energy

World is bombarded with solar energy

First published in Your Letters

The real world I inhabit, Mr Alexander (Free Press, Aug 15), is incessantly bombarded by about 180 thousand million megawatts (MW) of fluctuating solar energy. That’s astronomical fact. This is equivalent to the full output of 90 million large (2,000 MW) power stations, or 30 thousand million of the largest available wind turbines – if they work flat out during the 27 per cent of the time they are available.

To think that the regular five per cent plus or minus fluttery fluctuations (of about +/-9 thousand million MW) in this sunlight from ice age to ice age can be overwhelmed by the tiny 0.005 percentage point increase in the atmosphere’s candle-snuffing carbon dioxide content (from the present 0.04 per cent) is the real fantasy. — Roderick Taylor, Abbotsbrook, Bourne End

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