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Clarifying Wind Turbines

It is possible to include heating elements in wind turbines to prevent freezing. They never took that into consideration in Texas where the wind turbines probably supply as much as 10% of the power. The same problem took place in Germany. Nobody seems to have done their research into historic weather patterns.

I have said many times that in school, I was confronted with a real conflict between Physics class and Economics. The first said nothing is random and the latter said everything was so the government can manipulate the economy i.e. Marxism.


The Father of Chaos Theory is Edward Norton Lorenz (1917–2008) who was an American mathematician and meteorologist. Lorenz was certainly THE pioneer in Chaos Theory. A professor at MIT, Lorenz was the first to recognize what is now called chaotic behavior in the mathematical modeling of weather systems.

During the 1950s, Lorenz observed that there was a cyclical non-linear nature to weather yet the field relied upon linear statistical models in meteorology to do weather forecasting. It was like trying to measure the circumference of a circle with a straight edge ruler. His work on the topic culminated in the publication of his 1963 paper Deterministic Non-periodic Flow in the Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, and with it, the foundation of chaos theory. During the early 1960s, Lorenz had access to early computers. He was running what he thought would be random numbers and began to observe there was a duality of a hidden repetitive nature. He graphed the numbers that were derived from his study of convection rolls in the atmosphere. What emerged has been perhaps one of the most important discoveries in modern time.


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Offshore wind turbines: Expensive, risky, and last just 15 years

Offshore wind turbines: Expensive, risky, and last just 15 years




Preface: The Department of Energy high wind penetration plans require a lot of offshore wind. But is it possible, affordable, or wise to do this? Corrosion leads to a short lifespan of just 15 years. To reduce maintenance, offshore windmills use limited rare earth metals.  A 500 MW offshore wind farm could cost $3.04 billion dollars (Table A-1). The materials (i.e. steel & concrete) needed for 730,099 2 MW windmills in America are staggering. Offshore turbines of 6 MW weigh 757 tons, nearly 2.5 times more than onshore turbines (table 4.3), each one weighing as much as 505 cars of 3,000 pounds each.  Most components are made in China and Europe, so supply chain disruptions would delay repairs or repowering.

Wind turbines can be battered, rusted, corroded, or destroyed by tides, storms, hurricanes, lightning, icebergs, floes, large waves, and marine growth, shortening their lives and increasing maintenance and operation costs.

Why build risky, expensive, short-lived offshore wind farms if a renewable electric grid may not be possible given the lack of a national grid, lack of commercial-level utility-scale energy storage, and the insurmountable issue of seasonal wind and solar?  Peak oil occured in 2018, so sometime within the next 10 years oil shocks will hit and be too precious for building such contraptions, and oil will eventually be rationed mainly to agriculture (if government is not controlled by libertarians, republicans, or demagogues), and after that, the center will not hold.  Best to use the energy to build offshore wind turbines on creating organic farms and other postcarbon strategies.


Navigant. 2013. U.S. Offshore Wind Manufacturing and Supply Chain Development. U.S. Department of Energy.

Can we afford offshore wind turbines? A 500 MW farm costs $3 trillion dollars and will last only 15 years

offshore wind capital costs 3 trillion dollars

















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The stuff problem

‘Yes to renewables!’ Hundreds rallied outside the Victorian Parliament House, Melbourne, 10 December 2013. Takver under a Creative Commons Licence

How much mined material will we need to build a 100-per-cent renewable world? Danny Chivers works it out.

The problem with wind turbines, solar panels, ground-source heat pumps and electric cars is that they’re all made of stuff. When people like me make grand announcements (and interactive infographics) explaining how we don’t need to burn fossil fuels because fairly shared renewable energy could give everyone on the planet a good quality of life, this is the bit of the story that often gets missed out. We can’t just pull all this sustainable technology out of the air – it’s made from annoyingly solid materials that need to come from somewhere.

So how much material would we need to transition to a 100-per-cent renewable world? For my new NoNonsense book, Renewable Energy: cleaner, fairer ways to power the planet, I realized I needed to find an answer to this question. It’s irresponsible to advocate a renewably powered planet without being open and honest about what the real-world impacts of such a transition might be.

In this online article, I make a stab at coming up with an answer – but first I need to lay down a quick proviso. All the numbers in this piece are rough, ball-park figures, that simply aim to give us a sense of the scale of materials we’re talking about. Nothing in this piece is meant to be a vision of the ‘correct’ way to build a 100-per-cent renewably powered world. There is no single path to a clean-energy future; we need a democratic energy transition led by a mass global movement creating solutions to suit people’s specific communities and situations, not some kind of top-down model imposed from above. This article just presents one scenario, with the sole aim of helping us to understand the challenge.

– See more at: http://newint.org/blog/2015/08/15/material-requirements/#sthash.FQbbzNu7.dpuf


Germany Now Faced With Thousands Of Aging Wind Farms

Germany Now Faced With Thousands Of Aging Wind Farms

Germany has long been a pioneer in the field of renewable energy, generating a record 78 percent of its power consumption from renewables in July of this year. In fact, Germany is one of the very few countries in the world that is actually struggling with too much renewable energy. The latest testimony to this fact is the new issue of decommissioning its old wind farms.

2011 was a turning point for the European giant as it started moving away from nuclear energy (post Japan’s Fukushima nuclear disaster) and began to replace it with renewables. However, wind energy made its foray in Germany well before 2011. Germany started building wind turbines in the mid-1990s and now there are almost 25,000 wind turbines in the country.

However, the problem now is that a large number of the 25,000 odd turbines have become too old. Close to 7,000 of those turbines will complete more than 15 years of operation by next year. Although these turbines can continue running, with some minor repairs and modifications, the question is whether it makes any economic sense to maintain them?

Related: Winners And Losers Of Iran’s Return To The Oil And Gas Markets


(Click Image To Enlarge)

Image source: TriplePundit.com

Efficiency is the key

Beyond a period of 20 years, the guaranteed tariffs that are set for wind power are terminated, thereby making them unprofitable. “Today, there are entirely different technologies than there were a decade ago. The performance of the turbines have multiplied, the turbines are also more efficient than before”, said Dirk Briese of market research company called Wind- Research. It therefore makes sense to replace old turbines with newer ones. However, it is not very easy to dismantle an existing turbine and, while there are companies like PSM that specialize in dismantling of wind turbines, the costs of decommissioning can run upwards of $33,500 per turbine.

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Bitter Wind: A Town Divided Over A Controversial Maine Wind Farm

Bitter Wind: A Town Divided Over A Controversial Maine Wind Farm

The proposal seemed straightforward: Erect 16 wind turbines on hilltops in rural Maine and generate enough electricity to power 25,000 homes and enough tax revenue to help a struggling local government in a depressed region. But the 450-foot turbines of the Bowers Wind farm would be seen from miles away in the picturesque

Video Award First Place

Grand Lake Stream area, and objections to their presence set up a conflict that pitted neighbor against neighbor.

In this nine-minute video, winner of the 2015 Yale Environment 360 Video Contest, videographer Roger Smith presents the viewpoints of the local proponents and opponents of the $100 million project. Those in favor see a revenue-generating, job-producing, green-energy boon for the region, with minimal environmental impact. Those opposed — including owners of the fishing, hunting, and tourist camps — see an eyesore that would mar Grand Lake Stream’s scenic vistas and drive away visitors.

Soon enough, class divisions emerge, with some locals who support the project saying that the camp operators and owners of vacation homes were edging out longtime residents. “We’re in a different class from them — they got money and a big camp on the lake,” says Travis Worster. “We’re just the people that used to live here.”

Watch the video


Survey Says… wind farms don’t hurt people’s health. But some people find them annoying. | – Environmental Defence

Survey Says… wind farms don’t hurt people’s health. But some people find them annoying. | – Environmental Defence.

We now have another study that confirms that there are no health impacts associated with living near wind farms.

The study, conducted by Health Canada at a cost of $2.1 million, agrees with the findings of the study by Ontario’s Medical Officer of Health, which found no “causal link between wind turbine noise and adverse health effects.” A study by the American Psychological Association  found the same. So have a myriad of other studies done over the years in multiple jurisdictions.

Health Canada’s study found that there was no relationship between wind turbines and reports of trouble sleeping, incidence of self-reported illness, stress, or quality of life.

They did, however, find that some people are annoyed by wind farms. In the language of epidemiology, the study found a correlation, but not a causal relationship, between increasing levels of wind turbine noise and “annoyance.”

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Olduvai IV: Courage
In progress...

Olduvai II: Exodus
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