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Big Wind Meets an Ill Wind - The answer to our electricity needs is not blowin’ in the wind.
American Spectator ^ | 12.28.12 | PETER HANNAFORD

Posted on 12/28/2012 7:31:01 PM PST by neverdem

Four years ago, Shell Wind Energy, a unit of the oil company, looked for a suitable site for a wind farm on the Northern California coast. Its scouts found a large acreage — cattle pastures — high on the hills about six miles from the town of Ferndale. They secured permission from the rancher-owners to use the land and announced the project. All hell broke loose.

The local weekly in the tight-knit town was flooded with concerned letters to the editor: One of two narrow roads into the hill area carried all the daily traffic of a large hinterland; the other was largely dirt. They would be clogged for months with construction trucks. Wind turbine blades will kill thousands of birds. The constant noise of the turning blades will keep local ranch families awake. The wind farm will spoil the view and forever alter the bucolic nature of the land.

Protest meetings...

--snip--

If one believes the global warming (“climate change”) theory, it follows that one believes humans are causing it by their use of hydrocarbons. Thus, wind farms reduce emissions.

Can they produce enough energy to reduce the use of natural gas, oil, nuclear?

In a word, no. The International Energy Agency estimates that the world’s demand for electricity will grow every year over the next two decades by the equivalent of Brazil’s annual usage. (Brazil uses about 475 tetrawatt hours a year.) The world’s total wind turbine energy output in 2011 was 437 tetrawatts, of which the U.S. share was a little under 20 percent. So, just to keep up with demand (without displacing any of the traditional energy sources) the world’s wind energy industry would have to develop five times the 2011 U.S. capacity every year for years to come. That’s a definition of Mission Impossible.

(Excerpt) Read more at spectator.org ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: agw; energy; greenenergy; windpower

1 posted on 12/28/2012 7:31:09 PM PST by neverdem
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To: neverdem

Big Wind doesn’t blow, it sucks.


2 posted on 12/28/2012 7:32:10 PM PST by AU72
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To: neverdem

We used to have a 5’ diameter propeller raised in the main triangle. There were times when it was spinning too fast to take down...yet the power generated didn’t keep the deep cycle batteries charged for long, and our electrical needs on the boat were few.


3 posted on 12/28/2012 7:35:56 PM PST by gorush (History repeats itself because human nature is static)
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To: gorush

How’s that for anecdotal?


4 posted on 12/28/2012 7:36:54 PM PST by gorush (History repeats itself because human nature is static)
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To: neverdem

anyone have a ping list for wind?

I’m facing the very real possiblity of having them built within 1250 ft of my house.

they build some 15 miles away that I can see from here.

Need any and all input to pass on to anti-wind movement before Zoning Appeals Mtg in Feb


5 posted on 12/28/2012 7:41:13 PM PST by digger48
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To: neverdem

The opposition needs to sue over the bird deaths. A huge part of Exxon’s Valdez settlement was based on bird kills.


6 posted on 12/28/2012 7:44:46 PM PST by Slicksadick (Go out on a limb........Its where the fruit is.)
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To: neverdem

Follow the money. Money laundering industries.


7 posted on 12/28/2012 7:45:51 PM PST by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote; then find me a real conservative to vote for)
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To: neverdem

not to mention that our locals just got hosed by Obama and Abound Solar.

he’s detemined to pland hundreds of these 450 foot middle fingers on the best cropland in the country. (no drought here this year, no irrigation either)

they’ve been throwing lots of big checks to anyone willing to sign over the rights to the land their ancestors homesteaded in the 1840s.

BIG checks


8 posted on 12/28/2012 7:46:06 PM PST by digger48
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To: digger48

Make the check big enough and they can put one in my back yard. What the heck, the government will eventually mandate it anyway. Just say’n


9 posted on 12/28/2012 7:55:35 PM PST by doc1019
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To: neverdem

“Increasingly, this seems to be the fate of Big Wind, one of the two mainstays of President Obama’s “alternative energy” plan. “

One of the reasons that Republicans keep getting their heads handed to them as they’re continually forced on to defense, is that they simply CANNOT understand the bigger picture.

In this case, the groups doing the suing are environmental groups, which are some of the many front groups for Democrats. In other words, it’s one group of Democrats stopping the Democrat president from carrying out his policy.

So why doesn’t he simply stop that? Because President Obama doesn’t actually want the windmills built - but he needs them discussed as a way to buy time as coal plants are shut down.

What if I’m wrong? If he REALLY wanted those windmills built, he could do one of the following: (1) Call up the groups and tell them to knock it off. Or, if you don’t believe he has that power, then he could (2) simply demand federal pre-emption of these lawsuits - and that would likely roll right through the Rubber-stamp Republicans.

But he has done neither, and the lawsuits continue, so one MUST conclude that this IS their policy, for sure.


10 posted on 12/28/2012 8:12:39 PM PST by BobL (Agenda 21...Agenda 21...Agenda 21...Agenda 21...Agenda 21... (whatever the hell that is))
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To: doc1019

If you don’t own 80+ acres, it ain’t you getting the check.

You just get your home value slashed by 25-50%


11 posted on 12/28/2012 8:38:42 PM PST by digger48
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To: digger48

You might rent the DVD “Windfall” from Netflix or check it out from your local library. It’s a 2010 documentary exposing the downside of wind turbines and how the issue pitted the residents of the small community against each other. If I recall there were also some discussion about the financial aspects of these projects.


12 posted on 12/28/2012 9:02:28 PM PST by DawnPatrolGuy
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To: DawnPatrolGuy

Thank you.

Ironically, the town across the county from me where they already built these things is named “Windfall”.


13 posted on 12/28/2012 9:06:39 PM PST by digger48
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To: wardaddy; Joe Brower; Cannoneer No. 4; Criminal Number 18F; Dan from Michigan; Eaker; Jeff Head; ...
Climate Science vs Politics: The Road Ahead

P.J. O'Rourke: Dear Mr. President, Zero-Sum Doesn't Add Up

Who Is Too Unbalanced to Be Armed?

The Tea Party has not yet begun to fight

Some noteworthy articles about politics, foreign or military affairs, IMHO, FReepmail me if you want on or off my list.

14 posted on 12/28/2012 9:47:13 PM PST by neverdem ( Xin loi min oi)
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To: neverdem
Many things are atrocious with wind power but one of the worst is that you don’t actually get any power out of them relatively speaking (any electrical benefit gained is essentially offset by the excess gas that is consumed since less efficient gas turbines have to be used to accommodate the rapid acceleration and deceleration rates that wind imposes on the system). I would urge all who are affected by the proliferation of this stupid idea to read this report from Prof Gordon Hughes from the UK entitled ‘Why is wind power so expensive?’ . It at least is a reasonably thorough analysis of the true cost of wind power.… http://www.thegwpf.org/images/stories/gwpf-reports/hughes-windpower.pdf

Here are a few highlights:  Meeting the UK Government’s target for renewable generation in 2020 will require total wind capacity of 36 GW backed up by 13 GW of open cycle gas plants plus large complementary investments in transmission capacity at a cost of about £120 billion.  The same electricity demand could be met from 21.5 GW of combined cycle gas plants with a cost of £13 billion, i.e. an order of magnitude cheaper than the wind scenario.  Under the most favourable assumptions for wind power, the Government’s wind policy will reduce emissions of CO2 at an average cost of £270 per metric ton (at 2009 prices) which means that meeting the UK’s renewable energy target would cost a staggering £78 billion per year in 2020. “The key problems with current policies for wind power are simple. They require a huge commitment of investment resources to a technology that is not very green, in the sense of saving a lot of CO2, but which is certainly very expensive and inflexible. Unless the current Government scales back its commitment to wind power very substantially, its policy will be worse than a mistake, it will be a blunder,” Professor Hughes said.

15 posted on 12/28/2012 9:56:02 PM PST by hecticskeptic
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To: neverdem; biblewonk
The answer to our electricity needs is not blowin’ in the wind

Don't tell biblewonk.

He's as bad about wind as Willie Green was about trains.

16 posted on 12/28/2012 10:06:22 PM PST by Carry_Okie (GunWalker: Arming "a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as well funded")
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To: hecticskeptic

Maintenance issues are not considered either, things break down and they are waaaaay up there, needing expensive tower monkeys to fix the bird blenders.


17 posted on 12/29/2012 12:57:22 AM PST by Leo Carpathian (FReeeeepissed)
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To: digger48
Some good factual cartoons: http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/category/wind-turbines Some of the comments in the threads have useful facts as well. This is from Britain where wind farms are big business and a big bust.
18 posted on 12/29/2012 5:09:04 AM PST by palmer (Obama = Carter + affirmative action)
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To: neverdem

Mrs. JohnnyP and I drove through that area on vacation in the late seventies and I remember those beautiful hills above the ocean.

Years prior to that I had been a sonar technician in the navy, and I had learned there was a “Naval Facility” (NAVFAC) in Ferndale.

A NAVFAC was one of the land based sonar sites that formed part of the SOSUS system. They were connected to hydrophone arrays on the continental shelf.

These were very hush hush at the time so I wanted to do a “drive by” to see what I could see. There was another one at Point Sur, but it was separated from the coast route by a long spit of land so you couldn’t get close at all.

Very informative history at this link:
http://www.navycthistory.com/NAVFACStationsHistory.txt

From the text:

“Naval Facility Centerville Beach, was located in Humboldt County, Northern California,
near the cities of Ferndale and Eureka. The base at Centerville Beach was the site
of a Naval Air Station, and the Eureka airport. Centerville Beach was a thirty-acre
U.S. Navy base used for oceanographic research and undersea surveillance. The site
was decommissioned in 1993. Through the historic town of Ferndale, past idyllic
farmhouses and picturesque landscapes with cows grazing, past Centerville Beach
and up a winding road, overlooking the Pacific Ocean was the Centerville Naval
Facility. As of 2006, the base is a ghost-town and is completely deserted, with
boarded up buildings still standing, and no plans for its future use.”

A view of the facility from the ocean is at the end of this link:
http://www.navy.mil/navydata/cno/n87/usw/issue_25/sosus.htm

Related to the Point Sur facility:
http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=565


19 posted on 12/29/2012 5:41:24 AM PST by JohnnyP
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To: Leo Carpathian
Not only aren't the maintenance issues of the wind turbines considered, neither is the maintenance impact on the existing coal and gas fired units... those units used to go up and down slowly over the course of a day to reflect the increasing/decreasing demand of the grid. Now with wind entered into the mix, the coal and gas units are expected to go up and down like yoyos. Metal and thermal fatigue is a fact of life and like it or not, dragging wind into that mix will greatly shorten the life of these other power units.
20 posted on 12/29/2012 8:12:55 AM PST by hecticskeptic
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To: hecticskeptic

“Not only aren’t the maintenance issues of the wind turbines considered, neither is the maintenance impact on the existing coal and gas fired units... those units used to go up and down slowly over the course of a day to reflect the increasing/decreasing demand of the grid. Now with wind entered into the mix, the coal and gas units are expected to go up and down like yoyos. Metal and thermal fatigue is a fact of life and like it or not, dragging wind into that mix will greatly shorten the life of these other power units.”

-—<>-—<>-—<>-—<>-—<>-—

Excellent, excellent point! I had never considered that aspect, but had only considered the raw loss of efficiency as the major cost of cycling those units, as they require a certain amount of time at any given output level to attain best efficiency at that level.


21 posted on 01/02/2013 10:24:35 AM PST by AFPhys ((Praying for our troops, our citizens, that the Bible and Freedom become basis of the US law again))
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To: AFPhys
I attend the annual power conference almost every year and this is an issue that is just starting to get some attention.... there are a number of technical papers out now that address it fairly well. Given however that fatigue is one of those issues that never seem to get on the radar until problems occur, I suspect that it won't get dealt with until it seriously rears its ugly head and bites the appropriate authorities squarely in the a$$....which now that I think about it, shouldn't be too difficult given how deep they get their neck in the sand.

The basic problem with wind turbines is that it’s almost impossible to step back far enough to grasp the big picture… metal fatigue being a case in point since it is typically not something that happens immediately. You mentioned ‘the raw loss of efficiency as the major cost of cycling’….I’ve been studying overall efficiency as well but just ran into a new aspect of that this past year that I had never heard discussed before. The issue works like this…. Most jurisdictions with wind turbines also have other sources of electrical supply i.e. coal, gas, hydro, nuclear etc. and each have their characteristics (such as the one for gas that I mentioned in Post 15 which in that instance is so significant, it virtually negates all the electrical supply by wind turbines… but I digress). The problem with nuclear is that it does not lend itself to being increased or decreased in terms of output… it is only good for flat line base load supply. The problem is the spring and the fall for many jurisdictions….demand drops because air conditioning isn’t required and it is too early to need winter electrical heat. It is also the time that the wind typically blows hardest. Since almost all jurisdictions give wind power priority to the grid, this means that the electrical systems are way over supplied and because most nukes are quite large, it means having to pull units off line. This isn’t good and if you know something about nuclear power, the reasons are obvious….pull a nuke off line in response to a temporary spike in wind and you will be 3 days trying to put it back on line. Trying to run a grid with this kind of unpredictability as a fact of life makes for a highly inefficient system and in fact, once again a review of the big picture will tell you that operating under this condition with wind is significantly less efficient than having no wind at all. If the wind dies and the grid has nukes down, it means putting coal and gas back on line to make up the shortfall and if all of the headlong rush into wind was to try to reduce greenhouse gases, all of that ‘benefit’ is long gone. This gets back to a fundamental issue…. Should the control strategy for grids be driven by the available supply? Or by the instantaneous demand? I think the answer is obvious. Incidentally, here is a short section out of a program on Ontario’s publicly funded television network where this issue was discussed…. http://ww3.tvo.org/video/176598/green-energy-act-green Incidentally, the fellow describing the problem is with the Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (an organization that has a vested interests in all this as they are looking for engineering jobs amongst other things that they do)……first they lobbied for the engineering jobs that they thought the rush into wind would bring and now they are looking for the engineering jobs that involve solving all the problems that wind has wrought.

22 posted on 01/02/2013 12:22:55 PM PST by hecticskeptic
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To: AFPhys
Oh and here is a very interesting link that has to do with overall grid stability with wind turbines feeding into it.... a pretty interesting response from the neighbouring countries to Germany, no?

http://www.thegwpf.org/poland-czech-republic-ban-germanys-green-energy/

23 posted on 01/03/2013 6:34:25 AM PST by hecticskeptic
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To: hecticskeptic

Your example of bringing a nuke up and down is an extreme case of the raw loss of efficiency I intended to portray. That type of situation applies with any drastic change of output of a coal or any other generation unit. Some more, some less, however, there is always an extended period of time when efficiency is significantly lower any time a base unit has drastic change of output. For gas units, the time and efficiency loss is on the low end. Nukes are on the high end.

Thanks for bringing this all up, and thanks for the links. I will be checking them out later on.


24 posted on 01/03/2013 8:50:56 AM PST by AFPhys ((Praying for our troops, our citizens, that the Bible and Freedom become basis of the US law again))
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