are plenty of U.S. wind power success
stories, but of late the pace of wind power adoption in the U.S.
has slowed, even as it has soared in other nations like China.
Part of wind power's problem is the need for new high power
transmission lines stretching to the remote stretches of land ideal
for wind farms. The nation's largest wind project, a Texas wind
farm championed by billionaire T. Boone Pickens, fell
apart when the funding for its transmission lines fell
through.Another major obstacle is public sentiment.
Across the country citizens have been moving to block local wind
project, citing a variety of concerns. Among the most
contentious battles has been a fight over a pending 130-turbine farm
the coast of Martha's Vineyard. Alternative energy
advocates have spent millions lobbying local, state, and federal
governments to adopt the project. However, the project has been
met with diverse resistance.Environmental groups have blasted
the project saying that it will destroy the beauty of the Nantucket
Sound. A tougher challenge has come from local Native
Americans, who buried artifacts in the seabed and every morning
perform a sunrise ceremony on the sound. Members of the Mashpee
Wampanoag and Aquinnah tribes local to the region are both fighting
the project. They previously had managed to get the seabed
classified in the National Register of Historic Places due to its
buried artifacts, which may give them legal ammo to fight the
project.Other locals oppose the wind farm because it might
raise their power costs (wind costs substantially more than
traditional coal power or
nuclear energy). There are also worries about the health
concerns that have been linked to active wind farms.The
wind farm, originally unveiled in 2001, would be the first U.S.
offshore wind farm and would be able to by 2025 provide 20 percent of
Massachusetts' power needs. The Energy Management project is
backed by President Obama, whose Interior Secretary Ken Salazar
includes the farm in the President's alternative energy plan.
If the rival groups cannot reach a resolution by April, he says he
will try to force one -- potentially forcing a wind farm on the
locals.States Salazar, "What happens to Cape Wind,
whether it goes up or goes down, will not be determinative of wind
energy in the United States. The president and the department
have made renewable energy one of the imperatives in our
country."Across the country in Ludington, Michigan, a
similar fight is brewing. While federal politicians have taken
less note of the struggle between Havgul Clean Energy and local
citizens, its nonetheless another intriguing example about the debate
over the impact and cost of wind power.Havgul, a Norwegian
firm, wants to build a $3B USD wind farm off the shore of Lake
Michigan. The wind farm would feature between one hundred and
two hundred thirty-story tall turbines. The project, which is
pending local, state, and federal approval could power 350,000 homes,
and could bring many much-needed jobs to the state.However,
critics say that the project would hurt local wildlife and damage
property values. Pentwater resident Janet Webber comments, "I
spend more time buying a car then they're asking us to decide on
something that would be sitting out on our lake for the next hundred
years."The local voiced their concerns at a recent
Town Hall meeting.Wind power certainly isn't the only
topic that's drawing such debate. Similar objections have been
voiced about similar massive scale construction projects, such as
high speed rail. The commonalities of these objections raise an
interesting question. Should the U.S. stick to an
individualized approach when it comes to such projects, or should it
push them through regardless of local objections? That's a key
question that faces the Obama administration as it watches China
outperform the U.S. in laying down high speed rail and deploying
quote: You have it backwards. Non-dispatchable power sources like wind require the massive grid upgrades. Dispatchable power (nuclear, hydro, coal) do not.As a rough rule a thumb, a power source requires excess grid capacity as the inverse of its capacity factor. Windpower generally has a CF of about 1/3, meaning you need 3X the grid capacity to transmit that power. Nuclear averages about a 95% capacity factor, meaning you only need about an extra 5% to the grid.
quote: If a wind farm averages 5GW, though, it'll require about 15GW of grid capacity.
quote: Of course, the ones who are not naive, have stated clearly their intention to dismantle the country and our standard of living, and reducing the population by 50% or more, regardless of consequences - it's all for the greater good, in their idiotic minds, not realizing they'll be among the first to die. But indeed, they so hate themselves and society, death is exactly what they want to achieve. All because they seem to think they know what "the greater good" is!
quote: Just thought I'd mention that Facism is a loose term....One of the most common descriptions of facism is a melding of corporation and state. In this case, the RIGHT WING agenda in the US would fit the "facism" model much better than a left wing agenda.
quote: Part of wind power's problem is the need for new high power transmission lines stretching to the remote stretches of land ideal for wind farms. The nation's largest wind project, a Texas wind farm championed by billionaire T. Boone Pickens, fell apart when the funding for its transmission lines fell through.
quote: I have yet to see a Republican wish to take over corporations and establish "czars" to set their policies.
quote: You didn't look very far. Richard Stickler, Bush's mine safety czar
quote: You could also easily include Dan Bartlett, Bush's communications czar.
quote: LOL at the people DRASTICALLY oversimplifying something as complex as the definition of "Fascism". You'll find plenty of entomologists that do indeed place fascism at the very far right
quote: Wind power a sham? So, the fact that companies are spending billions of dollars in research in development into making larger, more efficent and quieter wind turbines is a sham? The fact that wind power usage and planning has more then doubled in the last 10 years is a sham?
quote: take energy out of this system are trivial in almost every way:The total solar energy absorbed by Earth's atmosphere, oceans and land masses is approximately 3,850,000 exajoules (EJ) per year. In 2002, this was more energy in one hour than the world used in one year.
quote: Solar power is, for the time being, a secondary source of additional energy that supplements the baseload generation of constant generation plants. I dont think anyone proposes powering the whole world with solar in the near term. Long term answers involve sending massive mirrors into space and beaming concentrated energy back to earth. That will be a while in the future though.
quote: Yes, stuff dies under solar panels
quote: It is not possible to make a completely clean coal or gas system that is even remotely affordable at this time.
quote: Do YOU have any idea what it would do to the air temperature, judging by your inane rantings here, I would imagine that you do not. The air would not freeze, your implication is that minus reflected IR from the sun, their would be nothing to warm the areas covered by the solar panels. But, have you ever seen a large scale solar installation? They do not just "sit" on the ground, they are set at angles that track the sun (i.e. they move) and focus their energy into towers of various substances to transfer the energy from the sun.
quote: Fact remains, that land area could have had thriving life on it. It doesn't matter that the amount of life you kill is only a small percent of the total, you're still killing life. Of course to a naive socialist, you think the ends justify the means and so killing some life is okay, because after all, it is a small percentage.
quote: The truth is that environmentalists may say they want solar power--- but when it actually comes to papering over an entire desert with solar cells (and thereby decimating all the plant and animal life in the region) they will be the first ones to stand up and block construction.
quote: Projects like these need to be put somewhere
quote: But maybe thats just me......
quote: i'd much rather see a few hundred gleaming white and spinning wind turbines...rather then a collection of run down and uncared for houses and mobile homes...with 4-8 children running around wearing nothing but diapers
quote: I agree! Who gets to shoot all those worthless parasite children in the head, to make room for those beautiful windmills? Do you get them all? Or can I have a few too?
quote: Its amazing how easy it is for some random person on the interweb to take somones elses opinion and turn it into genocide.
quote: How about this, I will hop on board a massive nuclear expansion as soon as the Federal Government gets it head out of its ass and adopts a national procedure for storage and disposal of nuke waste.
quote: Interior Secretary Ken Salazar
quote: States Salazar, "What happens to Cape Wind, whether it goes up or goes down, will not be determinative of wind energy in the United States. The president and the department have made renewable energy one of the imperatives in our country."
quote: "Nuclear is the safest form there is".Safer than solar, geothermal, wind, hydroelectric, you gotta be kidding me.
quote: I have nothing personal against nuclear power plants there is one in the state I live in that was built in the 1970's and is still going strong. But I don't think we need to proliferate the country with them. I also remember 3 mile island and the movie the china syndrome. The movie came our prior to the accident and they spoke about how an accident could potentially wipe out an area as large as Pennsylvania. Well that made a lot of people sit up and think after the 3 mile island accident.
quote: Nuclear technology is anything but clean. Don't believe the media; it's not clean just because they say it is. What happens with the Uranium and Plutonium waste after being used in a nuke plant? Where is it dumped? How radioactive is it?