Posts By Davis Swan


Posted on: December 4, 2015
There is an ongoing debate regarding the value and/or wisdom of the German Government’s implementation of an energy transformation – the Energiewende.  The primary driver for this initiative was the policy decision, first made in 2000, to eliminate nuclear power in Germany.  Nuclear generating stations contributed as much as 25% ... more...
Filed under: Nuclear
Posted on: November 11, 2015
If we had affordable and reliable utility-scale battery systems our energy problems would be over. We could easily develop enough wind and solar power to meet our energy demands by storing excess energy generated at mid-day and when the winds were blowing strongly. It would then be available to use ... more...
Filed under: Energy Storage
Posted on: October 28, 2015
I am not a big fan of roof-top solar. Roof-top solar panels are expensive and inefficient to install. These systems also cause major issues for utility grids because of the need to handle the bi-directional flow of electricity to and from the customer. This additional complexity unfairly imposes additional costs ... more...
Filed under: Solar
Posted on: April 14, 2015
I haven't posted anything to the Black Swan Blog for 8 months. One reason is that I have had a few other projects that have really monopolized my time.  But the other reason is that I usually write blog posts in response to something that interests me in the world ... more...
Filed under: Wind
Posted on: April 29, 2014
In a previous posting I stated my belief that the pure electric vehicle was the way of the future and that this sector of the automobile industry would grow more or less continuously for the foreseeable future. I decided to do a bit more investigation into how quickly that could ... more...
Filed under: Electric Vehicles
Posted on: March 7, 2014
There has been a lot of discussion about the electric vehicle revolution and what its impacts will be.  Are EV's gaining traction or getting stuck in the mud?  Will they quickly replace internal combustion powered vehicles or will they represent a "green" niche market for decades to come?  Will manufacturers ... more...
Filed under: Electric Vehicles
Posted on: February 14, 2014
Having spent more than 25 years in the oil and gas industry I have seen my fair share of hydro-carbon price fluctuations. So it has not come as a complete surprise to me that the "shale gas" phenomenon has had such a dramatic impact on North American Natural Gas prices. ... more...
Filed under: Fossil & Biomass
Posted on: February 6, 2014
In previous blog postings I have expressed my concerns about the relative return on investment and the economic fairness of roof-top solar panels. But I am also a big fan of solar power which is, after all, the most abundant and the most reliable energy source that we have at ... more...
Filed under: Solar
Posted on: January 14, 2014
Most supporters of renewable energy development are probably pretty comfortable with the way things are going.  Wind and Solar generation has been increasing both in "nameplate capacity" and in actual production of electricity.  There have not been any significant grid failures that can be blamed on renewables.  Apart from a ... more...
Filed under: Clean Power Investing
Posted on: January 6, 2014
In many parts of the world there are significant financial incentives for homeowners to install roof-top solar panels.  This can include capital grants for the equipment, tax write-offs and/or Feed-In-Tariffs that guarantee that electricity produced by the solar panel will be purchased by the local utility at above-market prices.  In ... more...
Filed under: Solar

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