原标题:【国际】泰王国拟对使用区块链发电售电收取额外国资本费

本期原著选自The Economist 2017-02-二伍的小说Clean energy’s dirty
secret,释义来自巴黎高等师范高阶7版、有道词典等财富。固然你也在念书The
Economist,欢迎订阅笔者的文集The
Economist,一起念书交换。

翻译按:任何二个行当的变革都会受到既有势力的拦截。读完本文,你将领会到洁净财富为什么无法登时取代旧财富的八个原因,以及恐怕的消除方案——政坛的参加和调节和测试。
本文译自《医学人》四月②二十八日刊。

By ANGUS McNEICE | China Daily | Updated: 2017-10-05 17:44

泰国官员起草的新法规须求向使用区块链技术的电力生产商收取额外国资本费。

Clean energy’s dirty secret

The renewables【1】 revolution is wrecking【2】 the
world’s electricity markets. Here’s what to do

金沙网址 1

Solar power projects, such as this one shaped like giant pandas in
Datong, Shanxi province, are now a common sight.

据《日经信息南美洲评论》报道,泰王国发电局(EGAT)渴求开发那笔开销作为区块链技术带来的私人住房影响的津贴。

【一】renewables 可再生财富

医学人封面

现行反革命,类似于图中的辽宁浙大学同的大花熊形状的太阳能发电类型现已很宽泛了。

ERC成员Viraphol Jirapraditkul表示:

金沙网址 2

Clean energy’s dirty secret

The renewables revolution is wrecking the world’s electricity markets.
Here’s what to do

  1. ALMOST 150 years after photovoltaic词汇解析,泰国拟对使用区块链发电售电收取额外国资本费。 cells and wind turbines
    were invented, they still generate only 7% of the world’s
    electricity. Yet something remarkable is happening. From being
    peripheral to
    the energy system just over a decade ago, they are
    now growing faster than any other energy source and their falling
    costs are making them competitive with fossil fuels. BP, an oil
    firm, expects renewables to account for half of the growth in global
    energy supply over the next 20 years. It is no longer far-fetched
    to think
    that the world is entering an era of clean, unlimited and
    cheap power. About time, too.

being peripheral to: not as important as other things or people in
a particular activity, idea, or situation
e.g. The romance is peripheral to the main plot of the movie.
competitive: as good as or better than others
far-fetched: extremely unlikely to be true or to happen
e.g. The whole story sounds very far-fetched.

1)光伏电池清劲风涡轮机注脚大约150年后,他们照旧只爆发世界七%的电力。但是,壹些值得注意的工作正在产生。十几年前还处在财富连串的外围,它们未来的增速超越任何别的财富,它们下跌的资产使其和化石燃料一样有竞争力
BP,一家石脑油公司,预计可再生财富将占今后20年天下能源供应拉长的二分之一。世界正在进入3个干净,Infiniti和廉价电力的一世不再是狐疑的。也是岁月难题。

  1. There is a 20trn dollars hitch, though. To get from here to
    there requires huge amounts of investment over the next few decades,
    to replace old smog-belching power plants and to upgrade the
    pylons and wires that bring electricity to consumers. Normally
    investors like putting their money into electricity because it
    offers reliable returns. Yet green energy has a dirty secret. The
    more it is deployed, the more it lowers the price of power from any
    source. That makes it hard to manage the transition to a carbon-free
    future, during which many generating technologies, clean and dirty,
    need to remain profitable if the lights are to stay on. Unless the
    market is fixed, subsidies to the industry will only grow.

hitch: a small problem that makes something difficult or delays it
for a short time
e.g. In spite of some technical hitches, the first program was a
success.
e.g. The whole show went without a hitch .

贰)然则,有3个20万亿法郎的小问题。从今后到今后急需在以往几10年多量的投资,以替代旧的喷出谷雾的发电厂和提高给买主带来电的电缆塔和电缆。平常投资者喜欢把钱投入电力,因为它提供保证的报恩。但是,紫红财富有二个污染的暧昧。它配置得愈多,它就会让来自别的来自的电力价格暴跌更多。那使得通向无碳的前途的连通难以控制,在那中间,假设要让灯继续发光的话,许多发电技术,无论清洁照旧污染,需求保证毛利。除非市镇是固定的,不然对行业的补贴只会增进。

  1. Policymakers are already seeing this inconvenient truth as a
    reason to put the brakes on renewable energy. In parts of Europe
    and China, investment in renewables is slowing as subsidies are
    cut back. However, the solution is not less wind and solar. It
    is to rethink how the world prices clean energy in order to make
    better use of it.

An inconvenient
truth
是壹部有关天气变化和满世界变暖的纪录片,维基上译作《难以忽视的本色》——译者注
put the brakes on sth: to stop something that is happening
cut back: If you cut back something such as expenditure or cut
back on it, you reduce it.
e.g. The Government has cut back on defence spending.

三)政策制定者已经把这些尴尬的本质看作停止可再生财富的二个缘由。在澳洲和玖州的1对地方,可再生财富的投资正在缓慢,因为补贴被削减。可是,化解方案不是更加少的风和太阳能。而是重新思考世界哪些为清新财富定价,以便更加好地动用它。

Shock to the system

  1. At its heart, the problem is that government-supported renewable
    energy has been imposed on a market designed in a different era.
    For much of the 20th century, electricity was made and moved by
    vertically integrated, state-controlled monopolies. From the 1980s
    onwards, many of these were broken up, privatised and liberalised,
    so that market forces could determine where best to invest. Today
    only about 6% of electricity users get their power from monopolies.
    Yet everywhere the pressure to decarbonise power supply has
    brought the state creeping back into markets. This is disruptive
    for three reasons. The first is the subsidy system itself. The other
    two are inherent to the nature of wind and solar: their
    intermittency and their very low running costs. All three help
    explain why power prices are low and public subsidies are
    addictive
    .
    四)其中央难点是,政坛帮助的可再生财富已经被强加到二个不暂且期设计出的商海。在20世纪的大部分时候,电力是由垂直整合的、国有控制股份的垄断企业制作和平运动送的。从20世纪80年间初步,在那之中许多把持被打破,被私有化和方向,使市集力量能够控制最佳投资趋势。前日只有约陆%的电力用户从垄断公司获得他们的电力。不过,随处去碳电力供应的压力1度使得国家专擅潜回市面。那是破坏性的,有多少个原因。第2是补贴制度自小编。别的五个是风和阳光的品质固有的:它们的间歇性和它们相当的低的周转开销。那八个原因扶助解释了干吗电力价格低和公共补贴停不下来

  2. First, the splurge of public subsidy, of about 800bn dollars
    since 2008, has distorted the market. It came about for noble
    reasons—to counter climate change and prime the pump for new,
    costly technologies, including wind turbines and solar panels. But
    subsidies hit just as electricity consumption in the rich world
    was stagnating because of growing energy efficiency and the
    financial crisis. The result was a glut of power-generating
    capacity that has slashed the revenues utilities earn from
    wholesale power markets and hence deterred investment.

prime the pump: to encourage a business, industry, or activity to
develop by putting money or effort into it
slash: to greatly reduce an amount, price etc = cut
e.g. The workforce has been slashed by 50%.

5)首先,公共补贴的“挥霍”,自二〇〇八年的话约为九千亿欧元,扭曲了市面。它是由于华贵的说辞——为了对抗天气变化和勉励发展新的、昂贵的技巧,包涵风力涡轮机和太阳电池板。不过,由于财富成效的频频增强和金融风险的影响,富裕国家的电力消耗停滞不前,补贴就在那时出现。结果导致过量的发电能力,大幅缩小了电力服务公司从周围电力市集赢得的进项,从而阻碍了投资。

  1. Second, green power is intermittent. The vagaries of wind and
    sun—especially in countries without favourable weather—mean that
    turbines and solar panels generate electricity only part of the
    time. To keep power flowing, the system relies on conventional power
    plants, such as coal, gas or nuclear, to kick in when renewables
    falter. But because they are idle for long periods, they
    find it harder to attract private investors. So, to keep the lights
    on, they require public funds.

kick in: If something kicks in, it begins to take effect.
e.g. As discounts kicked in, bookings for immediate travel rose by
15%.
falter: to become weaker and unable to continue in an effective
way
e.g. The economy is showing signs of faltering.
idle: not working or producing anything ≠ busy
e.g. The workers have been idle for the last six months.

陆)其次,深灰电源断断续续。风和日光的变动莫测——
尤其是在未有适用天气的国家——意味着涡轮机和太阳电池板仅在部分时刻致电。为了保证电力流动,系统依靠常规的发电站,例如煤、柴油或核能,在可再生财富减弱起到效益。然而因为她们久久居于空闲意况,他们发觉很难吸引私人投资者。所以,为了维持灯亮着,他们须要国有资金。

  1. Everyone is affected by a third factor: renewable energy has
    negligible or zero marginal running costs—because the wind and
    the sun are free. In a market that prefers energy produced at the
    lowest short-term cost, wind and solar take business from providers
    that are more expensive to run, such as coal plants, depressing
    power prices, and hence revenues for all.
    七)每一种人都境遇首个因素的影响:可再生财富具有可忽略的还是是零边界运营资本——因为风和日光是免费的。在多少个援救于以压低短时间资金生产能源的商海中,风能和太阳能从运维开销越来越高的提供商(如燃煤电厂)那里拿走生意,降低电价,从而下落了全数人的低收入。

Get smart

  1. The higher the penetration of renewables, the worse these
    problems get—especially in saturated markets. In Europe, which
    was first to feel the effects, utilities have suffered a “lost
    decade” of falling returns, stranded assets and corporate
    disruption. Last year, Germany’s two biggest electricity providers,
    E.ON and RWE, both split in two. In renewable-rich parts of America
    power providers struggle to find investors for new plants. Places
    with an abundance of wind, such as China, are curtailing wind
    farms to keep coal plants in business.

8)可再生财富的渗透率越高,这么些题材越严重——特别是在饱满市集。在率先感受到影响的欧洲,电力服务公司相当受了低收入下跌、资产搁浅和商店瓦解的“失去的10年”。2018年,德意志联邦共和国两大电力供应商E.ON和奥迪Q3WE两家都分拆成两家。在美利哥可再生资源丰盛的地域,电力供应商很难找到新工厂的投资者。拥有多量风力的地方,比如中华,正在削减风力发电站,以让燃煤电厂有工作可做。

  1. The corollary is that the electricity system is being
    re-regulated as investment goes chiefly to areas that benefit from
    public support. Paradoxically, that means the more states support
    renewables, the more they pay for conventional power plants, too,
    using “capacity payments” to alleviate intermittency. In effect,
    politicians rather than markets are once again deciding how to avoid
    blackouts. They often make mistakes: Germany’s support for
    cheap, dirty lignite caused emissions to rise, notwithstanding
    huge subsidies for renewables. Without a new approach the renewables
    revolution will stall.

9)推论是,电力系统正在被重复调整,因为投资根本去往受益于国有支撑的小圈子。争持的是,那意味帮忙可再生财富的国家愈来愈多,他们为符合规律发电厂支付的也越来越多,来利用“容积支付”来缓解间歇性。实际上,战略家而不是市面再次决定哪些幸免停电。他们平日犯错误:德意志对有利于、脏的褐煤的支撑引起排泄量上升,即便其对可再生财富提供巨额补贴。未有壹种新的办法,可再生财富革命将熄火

  1. The good news is that new technology can help fix the problem.
    Digitalisation, smart meters and batteries are enabling companies
    and households to smooth out their demand—by doing some
    energy-intensive work at night, for example. This helps to cope with
    intermittent supply. Small, modular power plants, which are easy to
    flex up or down, are becoming more popular, as are high-voltage
    grids that can move excess power around the network more
    efficiently.

smooth out: If you smooth out a problem or difficulty, you solve
it, especially by talking to the people concerned.
e.g. It’s O.K. I smoothed things out.

金沙网址,10)好音信是,新技巧可以支持缓解这一个题目。数字化,智能电衡量提示仪表和电池使公司和家中能够解决他们的须求——例如在夜间做一些能源密集型的办事。那促进应对间歇性供应。小型、模块化的发电站,不难灵活调节生产能力,变得尤为受欢迎,高压电力网也得以更有效地在互联网上传输多余的电力。

  1. The bigger task is to redesign power markets to reflect the new need
    for flexible supply and demand. They should adjust prices more
    frequently, to reflect the fluctuations of the weather. At times of
    extreme scarcity, a high fixed price could kick in to prevent
    blackouts. Markets should reward those willing to use less
    electricity to balance the grid, just as they reward those who
    generate more of it. Bills could be structured to be higher or lower
    depending how strongly a customer wanted guaranteed power all the
    time—a bit like an insurance policy. In short, policymakers should
    be clear they have a problem and that the cause is not renewable
    energy, but the out-of-date system of electricity pricing. Then they
    should fix it.
    11)越来越大的任务是双重设计电力市镇,以展现对灵活供应和需要的新要求。他们应当更频仍地调价,以体现天气的动荡。在极端稀罕的时候,高固定价格能够起效果来阻止停电。市场应该奖励愿意利用更加少的电力的人来抵消电力网,正如他们奖励那多少个产生更多电力的人。账单能够被组织变成越来越高或更低,那有赖于客户多么强烈地可望平素保障电力供应——有点像保单。由此可见,政策制定者应该掌握,他们相当,原因不是可再生财富,而是过时的电价制度。然后他们应当化解它。

原来的作品出处:法学人杂志

译者:七呵夫

本译文仅供个人研习、欣赏语言之用,谢绝任何转发及用于别的商业用途。本译文所涉法律后果均由作者负责。本身同意简书平台在接获有关作品权人的关照后,删除文章。

金沙网址 3

家用阳光能屋顶发电机的数码正在快捷扩大。那正是财富监禁理委员会员会(ETucsonC)供给制订对各样人都人己一视监管的原委。

【2】wreck破坏,毁坏

China accounted for more than 40 percent of capacity growth in global
renewable energy in 2016, which was a record year for worldwide clean
energy additions, according to a new study.

尤为多的泰王国公司选拔分布式账本技术(DLT)支持房主从屋顶太阳能系统中毛利。新一代区块链消费者通过在疏散的点对点(p二p)财富市镇上买卖剩余的太阳能电力财富,造成该国国有公用事业利润锐减。

金沙网址 4

2016年,中华夏族民共和国顶住了多于五分之二的大世界可再生能源,依据一项新的学习彰显,那是一项整个世界暗灰财富合成物的笔录。

换句话说,随着市集层面包车型大巴恢弘,直接从国营公用事业公司购得的电力收缩,那象征守旧电力行业的赢利减弱。

ALMOST 150 years after photovoltaic cells【3】 and wind
turbines【4】
were invented, they still generate only 7% of the
world’s electricity. Yet something remarkable is happening. From being
peripheral to the energy system just over a decade ago, they are now
growing faster than any other energy source and their falling costs
are making them competitive with fossil fuels【5】. BP, an oil
firm, expects renewables to account for half of the growth in global
energy supply over the next 20 years. It is no longer
far-fetched【6】 to think that the world is entering an era of
clean, unlimited and cheap power. About time, too.

The International Energy Agency, a Paris-based policy advisory
organization also known as the IEA, found that renewables accounted for
almost two-thirds of new power capacity last year. For the first time,
solar additions rose faster than any other fuel, including coal.

就在一年前,泰国还甩掉了对非政党太阳能发电的严酷限制。据《维也纳邮报》报纸发表,泰王国政党允许家庭和商社二零一八年8月将太阳电池板发生的剩余能量出售给EGAT,但大概当初并未料到p2p财富社区会这么高效地选择区块链技术吧。

【叁】photovoltaic cell光伏电池

国际财富代理中心(IEA),一家在设置在法国首都的讯问公司,发现可再生产资料源占新财富的四五%。有史以来第一次,太阳能合成物发展的比包涵煤炭在内的此外燃料快。

英文原来的书文

【四】wind turbine风力涡轮机

Last year, new solar capacity around the world grew by 50 percent,
reaching more than 74 gigawatts, with China accounting for almost half
of that expansion. China is also the world market leader in hydropower,
bioenergy for electricity and heat, and electric vehicles.

New regulations drafted by Thailand officials demand that electricity
producers using blockchain be charged additional fees. Government
regulators fear an explosion in independent power generation will lead
to a reduction in revenue.

【伍】fossil fuel化石燃料,矿物燃料

二零一八年,全球太阳能体积增加了百分之五十,在神州负担了靠近的2/肆的能量增加的景观下降成并超越7四千兆瓦。同时中夏族民共和国也是大地用水力和生物能发电,热,和电力交通工具市镇的理事。

Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) has demanded the
fees be paid as a subsidy for potentially destabilizing effects
blockchain technology brings, Nikkei Asian Review reports.

【陆】far-fetched 牵强附会,难以置信的

Fatih Birol, executive director of the IEA, estimates that renewable
capacity will grow by about 1,000 GW-or half the current global
capacity in coal power-by 2022.

“The number of household solar rooftop power generators is increasing
rapidly. That’s why the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) needs to
develop regulation that is fair for everybody,” declared ERC member
Viraphol Jirapraditkul.

金沙网址 5

IEA的进行总管Fatih
Birol测度在202二年可再生财富覆盖面能够拉长十亿瓦特,可能今后天下用煤量的四分之2。

There is a growing number of Thai companies leveraging distributed
ledger technology (DLT) to help homeowners profit from rooftop solar
systems. A new generation of blockchain-savvy consumers is muscling the
state-owned utilities out of profits by buying and selling surplus solar
energy on decentralized peer-to-peer (p2p) energy markets.

There is a $20trn hitch【7】, though. To get from here to there
requires huge amounts of investment over the next few decades, to
replace old smog-belching【8】 power plants and to upgrade the
pylons【9】 and wires that bring electricity to consumers.
Normally investors like putting their money into electricity because
it offers reliable returns. Yet green energy has a dirty secret. The
more it is deployed, the more it lowers the price of power from any
source. That makes it hard to manage the transition to a carbon-free
future, during which many generating technologies, clean and dirty,
need to remain profitable if the lights are to stay on. Unless the
market is fixed, subsidies to the industry will only grow.

“What we are witnessing is the birth of a new era in solar photovoltaics
(panels),” Birol said. “We expect that solar photovoltaic capacity
growth will be higher than any other renewable technology through 2022.”

As the markets grow bigger, less electricity is being purchased directly
from the state-run utilities, meaning less profits for the traditional
power industry.

【7】hitch钩住(v),困难,故障,结(n);get hitched 结婚

“大家正在见证三个新太阳能电板时期的诞生,“
Birol说,”大家预测在202二年,太阳能光板的能量会比别的任何可再生产资料源技术进步的快。“

Here, we are witnessing the decentralization of the energy sector, in
Thailand at least. Andreas Antonopolous thinks that this is one of the
“most important trends in human history.” Despite the benefits of p2p
energy markets, the fact that governments can just impose additional
fees to compensate puts a real dampener on things.

金沙网址 6

In its report, the IEA labeled China as the world’s “undisputed
renewable growth leader”, driven by concerns about air pollution and
capacity targets that were outlined in the country’s 13th Five-Year
Plan(2016-20).

It was only a year ago that Thailand rolled back strict restrictions on
non-government solar power generation. Bangkok Post reported that the
Thai government allowed households and businesses to sell surplus energy
generated by solar panels back to EGAT last September, but I guess it
didn’t count on blockchain being adopted by the p2p energy community so
quickly.

【8】belch喷(大量)出,吐出,打嗝

IEA的告知中,中中原人民共和国被认为是世界上“毫无疑问的可再生产资料源的官员“,在对环境污染和能量目的的担忧下,可再生产资料源的开支被标明在炎黄第2三个5年陈设中。

译者:高旭

金沙网址 7

The IEA report said China represents half of global solar photovoltaic
demand, and Chinese companies manufacture around 60 percent of the
world’s panels.

来源:THE NEXT WEB

【9】pylon电缆塔

IEA的报告中还说中华表示了大地太阳能板的须求量,中中原人民共和国制作了天下百分之60左右的阳光能板。

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Policymakers are already seeing this inconvenient truth as a reason to
put the brakes on renewable energy. In parts of Europe and China,
investment in renewables is slowing as subsidies are cut
back【10】
. However, the solution is not less wind and solar. It is
to rethink how the world prices clean energy in order to make better
use of it.

The IEA states that, due to the size of the market, policy developments
in China will have global implications for solar energy demand, supply,
and prices.

责编:

【10】cut back (on sth)削减,减少

IEA提出,由于商场的体积,中夏族民共和国国策的进步会对整个世界的太阳能须求,供应和价格发生影响。

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The report identified the growing cost of renewable subsidies and grid
integration in China as potential barriers to further growth, and noted
that China’s renewable energy policies are being modified in order to
address these challenges.

Shock to the system

At its heart, the problem is that government-supported renewable
energy has been imposed on a market designed in a different era. For
much of the 20th century, electricity was made and moved by vertically
integrated, state-controlled monopolies. From the 1980s onwards, many
of these were broken up, privatised and liberalised, so that market
forces could determine where best to invest. Today only about 6% of
electricity users get their power from monopolies. Yet everywhere the
pressure to decarbonise【11】 power supply has brought the state
creeping back into【12】 markets. This is disruptive for three
reasons. The first is the subsidy system itself. The other two are
inherent to the nature of wind and solar: their intermittency and
their very low running costs. All three help explain why power prices
are low and public subsidies are addictive.

告知中申明了中夏族民共和国的可再生财富的津贴和网络集成的价格持续抓好,会对前途的腾飞有地下阻碍,并以为中华夏族民共和国对可再生财富的方针相应依据那一个阻碍做出调整。

【11】decarbonise除碳,脱碳;de-去掉,除掉,……反义

China is moving away from its feed-in-tariff program to a quota system
with green certificates. The IEA states that these new policies,
together with power market reform, new transmission lines, and the
expansion of distributed generation, are expected to speed up the
deployment of solar energy.

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中原从停放电价项目升高到有水草绿证件的定额分配制。IEA认为那几个新的策略加上能量市镇的重新整理,新的电子通信传输线,和分布式发电的充实会加快太阳能财富的分布。

【1二】creep in/into sth 起首爆发(或影响)

Under an accelerated case -where government policy lifts barriers to
growth-IEA analysis finds that global renewable capacity growth led by
China could be boosted by another 30 percent, totaling an extra 1,150 GW
by 2022.

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在当局政策消除发展阻碍的图景下,IEA分析发今后202二年,中夏族民共和国引导的满世界可再生财富的容积会在追加三成也正是一,150千瓦。

First, the splurge【13】 of public subsidy, of about $800bn
since 2008, has distorted the market. It came about for noble reasons—
to counter climate change and prime the pump【14】 for new,
costly technologies, including wind turbines and solar
panels【15】
. But subsidies hit【16】 just as electricity
consumption in the rich world was stagnating because of growing energy
efficiency and the financial crisis. The result was a glut【17】
of power-generating capacity that has slashed the revenues utilities
earn from wholesale power markets and hence deterred investment.

Globally, falling auction prices for wind and solar projects have
contributed to the rise in new renewable energy capacity.

【13】splurge挥霍,乱花钱

从整个世界的角度来看,风力和太阳能项目竞价价格的暴跌,对晋级新的可再生财富体量做出了孝敬。

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Last month, the United Kingdom government held a wind farm auction at
which two companies agreed to build facilities for 57.50 pounds ($76)
per megawatt hour. The price is half what new wind farms were built for
just two years ago, and means off shore wind power will be cheaper than
nuclear energy in the UK for the first time.

【1四】prime the pump投资振兴

上个月,英帝国政坛进行了风力场的竞价会,两家商店同意建立每小时发生伍⑦.50英镑(约合7陆法郎)的百万沃特t的配备。这几个价位已经是两年前新建工厂的十一分之5。意味着在英帝国,海上风力发电第一回比原子能发电要便于。

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Researchers from the UK and China recently announced five new projects
to develop the”next generation” of technology in wind and wave power.

【一伍】solar panel太阳电池板

United Kingdom和华夏的商讨人口方今颁发了几个新品类去研究“下七个近日“的风能和波浪能的科学技术。

【1陆】hit发生不良影响,风险

The UK’s Natural Environment Research Council and the Engineering and
Physical Sciences Research Council have pledged 4 million pounds in
funding during the next three years for the projects, which will also
receive funding from the  of China.

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大不列颠及苏格兰联合王国的当然财富商量委员会和工程及自然科委会在未来三年会为这些项目出资四百万日币。中华夏族民共和国国家自然科学基金委员会员会也会掏钱。

【1七】glut供过于求,供应过剩

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Second, green power is intermittent. The vagaries【18】 of wind
and sun—especially in countries without favourable weather—mean that
turbines and solar panels generate electricity only part of the time.
To keep power flowing, the system relies on conventional power plants,
such as coal, gas or nuclear, to kick in【19】 when renewables
falter【20】. But because they are idle for long periods, they
find it harder to attract private investors. So, to keep the lights
on, they require public funds.

【1八】vagaries变化莫测

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【1九】kick in初阶生效

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【20】falter衰弱,衰退

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Everyone is affected by a third factor: renewable energy has
negligible or zero marginal running costs【21】—because the wind
and the sun are free. In a market that prefers energy produced at the
lowest short-term cost, wind and solar take business from providers
that are more expensive to run, such as coal plants, depressing power
prices, and hence revenues for all.

【二1】marginal
costs【会计学】边际开支(指因小额变动而招致总资金的照应改变)

Gets mart

The higher the penetration of renewables, the worse these problems
get—especially in saturated markets. In Europe, which was first to
feel the effects, utilities have suffered a “lost decade” of falling
returns, stranded assets and corporate disruption. Last year,
Germany’s two biggest electricity providers, E.ON and RWE, both split
in two. In renewable-rich parts of America power providers struggle to
find investors for new plants. Places with an abundance of wind, such
as China, are curtailing【22】 wind farms to keep coal plants in
business.

【22】curtail缩减,限制

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The corollary【23】 is that the electricity system is being
re-regulated as investment goes chiefly to areas that benefit from
public support. Paradoxically, that means the more states support
renewables, the more they pay for conventional power plants, too,
using “capacity payments” to alleviate intermittency. In effect,
politicians rather than markets are once again deciding how to avoid
blackouts【24】. They often make mistakes: Germany’s support for
cheap, dirty lignite【25】 caused emissions to rise,
notwithstanding huge subsidies for renewables. Without a new approach
the renewables revolution will stall.

【二三】corollary必然的结果(或结论)

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【2肆】blackout 断电,停电,灯火管制,信息封锁

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【25】lignite褐煤

The good news is that new technology can help fix the problem (see
page 16). Digitalisation, smart meters【26】 and batteries are
enabling companies and households to smooth out【27】 their
demand—by doing some energy-intensive work at night, for example. This
helps to cope with intermittent supply. Small, modular power plants,
which are easy to flex up or down, are becoming more popular, as are
high-voltage grids that can move excess power around the network more
efficiently.

【26】smart meter智能电衡量提醒仪表

【27】smooth out

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【27】smooth sth (back/down/out) 使平滑,使平整

The bigger task is to redesign power markets to reflect the new need
for flexible supply and demand. They should adjust prices more
frequently, to reflect the fluctuations of the weather. At times of
extreme scarcity, a high fixed price could kick in to prevent
blackouts. Markets should reward those willing to use less electricity
to balance the grid, just as they reward those who generate more of
it. Bills could be structured to be higher or lower depending how
strongly a customer wanted guaranteed power all the time—a bit like an
insurance policy【28】. In short, policymakers should be clear
they have a problem and that the cause is not renewable energy, but
the out-of-date system of electricity pricing. Then they should fix
it.

【28】insurance policy保险单

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