Renewables are pulling two directions, nationwide and local
Recently a study found that wind can serve as reliable baseload power. The key is to link wind farms together with a high-speed transmission grid.
"This study implies that, if interconnected wind is used on a large scale, a third or more of its energy can be used for reliable electric power, and the remaining intermittent portion can be used for transportation, allowing wind to solve energy, climate and air pollution problems simultaneously," said Archer, the study’s lead author …
So much for the "wind can’t do baseload" shtick.
Windophobes will point out that creating a huge new continent-spanning transmission grid hardly fits with the localized, decentralized power model greens are usually pushing. And they’re right. I still think on-site solar (along with other renewables, cogen, storage, and EE) can do a ton to reduce baseload demand, but I suspect a nationwide high-speed transmission grid will be the other side of the electric coin.