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Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

Posted February 23, 2011 7:09 AM

Reports say wind speeds worldwide are dropping, which means wind turbines will need to be more efficient. And another study says the turbines need to be spaced farther apart for best interaction with the winds — taking up more land. Do concerns like these give you pause about the future of wind power — or are they just blowing hot air?

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#1

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/23/2011 8:34 AM

Where's the problem?

We just need to invest in giant solar powered fans to spin the turbines.......think of the jobs that will be created.*

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#2

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/23/2011 6:19 PM

I thought global warming climate change resulted in more energy flux, thereby increasing wind speeds and intensifying hurricanes, etc. Did they change their minds again?

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#4
In reply to #2

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/23/2011 10:40 PM

It's another bogus report by the Chamber of Commerce with help from David Koch.

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#3

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/23/2011 10:37 PM

Not only are we running out of oil but now we're running out of wind. Truth be known we're probably slowing down the rotation of the planet too

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#5

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/23/2011 10:42 PM

"Do concerns like these give you pause about the future of wind powe...?"

No, I have enough doubts about the efficacy of wind energy scams schemes that these concerns don't make a whole lot of difference.

Except maybe I should look more at the additional land requirements- Last information I saw estimated a requirement for 50 hetares per megawatt of capacity, which translates to 50 hectares per 300 kW delivered (assuming really, really good availability numbers). Maybe that should be increased to 70 hectares per megawatt?

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#6

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/23/2011 11:29 PM

How about using common sense instead of politics and putting them were the wind blows and not in places were it doesn't.

We have more wind than we know what to do with here in North Dakota and wind power is very viable and welcomed industry that fits in very well and peacefully coexists with our usage of our land for farming and ranching.

However just because they work well in one place and are highly profitable there does not mean they work everywhere else with the same level of profit and utilization. If put in the wrong place they are just a huge waste of money and materials that does nothing but give wind power and the related politics a bad image.

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#9
In reply to #6

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 12:41 AM

tcmtech-

I agree with you whole-heartedly- use alternatives where they are appropriate, but don't try to sell them as a panacea for all situations. By the way, it seems you may have to build a whole lot of power lines to transfer your wind to a dense enough market for the energy...

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#17
In reply to #9

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 2:23 PM

Fortunately for us we already have a fair power distribution infrastructure in place and the people who operate it understand the concept of increasing the capacity every time ther is a major overhaul or rework in the system.

The power producers in this state work together to help each other out opposed to what the rest of the country's power producers and line owners do which is cheat each other every way they can and try to blame everyone else for the limitations of their combined systems.

All year round I see truckloads of massive wind generator components being shipped into our region and right behind them so to speak are also massive loads of new poles huge power line cable and other primary electrical utility infrastructure components.

But if no one wants our wind power no problem! We will happily keep it here to power all of our high output oil wells and related systems we are putting in!

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#11
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Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 8:53 AM

I've brought this up on here before. Wind power is great. Where is one of the most productive sources of wind in the US? Within site of the Kennedy compound off Cape Cod.

OMG, NOT THERE, IT'LL SPOIL THE VIEW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Funny

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#7

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/23/2011 11:36 PM

Reports say wind speeds worldwide are dropping,

Yeah, right. I wonder were these reports are?

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#8
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Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/23/2011 11:56 PM

In the doldrums, no doubt.... (Although it is hard to decrease below zero.)

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#10

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 8:33 AM

Are wind speeds dropping? No. Do promoters trying to market wind ever hype their numbers? Yes.

The numbers that the promoters claim are usually right at the site of generation, not the final delivery point. So you might have a farm in the Dakotas that's producing 100 MW, great. But if the power is ultimately being used in San Diego as much as half of the power is lost to transmission. And all along the way every different owner of transmission lines wants a toll for the right to travel on their lines. This means by the time the final "profit" from the windmill comes in its less than half of what was promised in the glossy brochure, or more than double the payback period.

Wind is a great source but it has to be very close to where it will be consumed. I did a short study on this topic about 2 years ago. My favorite finding was that one of the larger windmills cost about 2 million dollars to construct and place (not to mention it has to hook into the grid somewhere, if you're 200 miles from an adequate transmission network who is going to pay for all the new towers and wire to hook you up?). The average payback period based on current KWH fees was 20 years. 20 years was also the expected life of the windmill. So if you add in transmission fees paid to others and transmission losses you end up with a net loss of investment. Not so sweet.

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#12

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 10:58 AM

There is a lot of dissent here in Maine and other places about the use of "typical" wind generators that use large prop type blades, because of noise, flicker effect, and the view. What I'd like to know is why there seem to be no discussions about alternative wind generator designs, such as the vertical shaft designs? Are these designs that much less efficient?

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#13

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 11:48 AM

I havn't heard anythin like that, but here in England where we have a lot of wind turbines off the coast (severel hundred and still counting), they have discovered that they only produce about 14% of what they are designed to produce?

The reason for this is that the wind blows intermitently, and not for long periods of time, so all in all this has been one hell of an expensive experiment (£3+ million each turbine), but still our government is hell bent on putting hundreds more of these infernal turbines off shore?

The elecricity provided by these turbines is twice to three times as expensive as from a coal or gas fired power station, and 50% more expensive that from a nuclear plant! So when anyone says that the alternative power generators are good and efficient, don't believe them, it is all a lie!

Xanasax

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#14

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 12:58 PM

It is plainly obvious that you are fishing for reply emails for marketing purposes. Wind speeds are not dropping anywhere, and you can put turbines very close together as long as they don't hit each other and have room for maint to be safely done. I will not respond to any attempted contact from this thread.

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#15

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 1:35 PM

I saw a Gizmag article on the spacing.

I haven't seen "Reports say wind speeds worldwide are dropping"

Can you provide sources and/or links to same?

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#16
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Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 1:49 PM
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#18
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Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 2:46 PM

Thanks Kram

I do like to do the 'homework'.

Mr Goggin has "interesting" views. I wonder if he's read/understands, either study, or is just "reacting" on behalf of his vested interests.

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#19
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Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 2:58 PM

I don't know. One study is blaming trees. My guess is that wind is good where it's good, and where turbines aren't putting out the advertised power, the people responsible are looking for anything to blame but themselves.

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#20
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Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 5:33 PM

Odd isn't it most texts on wind power have chapter after chapter on selecting the site - yet so many 'farms' just seem to ignore that.

I didn't see enough in that National Geographic coverage to indicate exactly what/how/where the data was being collected, or to know how they are defining 'surface'. E.g. is the instrumentation rising with the height of local regrowth/construction. Are the oceanic speeds 'falling' or just continental speeds.

Seems to me you'd need 100 years of data from weather stations, around which nothing had changed over that time. I don't imagine there are many.

There also seems to my mind other factors worth a thought.

Earth's jet streams

Changes in weather patterns

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#21
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Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 6:14 PM

In the first one, after saying that this is possibly due to global warming, and then having a scientist say that he'd put his money on global warming as a culprit is suspect. As far as I'm concerned, these people need to shut up until they have a definitive answer. They tend to throw out, "global warming", as the potential culprit for any anomaly. It's not that I don't believe that global warming is happening, but the way they abuse the term waters down any valid scientific argument that might be had.

The second one, (to me), is equally misleading. "Impact of global warming underestimated". Could it be that the computer models were just wrong? I get weather forecasts daily, based on computer models. Today was 10° cooler than yesterdays prediction, and they called for rain, which didn't happen, yet I'm supposed to sit here and believe, that because things didn't go according to computer models, the impact of global warming is much worse than expected. I can't go there.

For me, the environmentalists would have a lot more credence if:

A) They were more honest and didn't try to skew the data. And

B) If the proposed solutions didn't somehow involve them getting rich.

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#22
In reply to #21

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 6:58 PM

"global warming" is the catch phrase for grant money and getting 'published' (A+B) ()

You may not have noticed, but one was 2008 and the other 2005

But yes "the way they abuse the term waters down any valid scientific argument that might be had".

'Oh just wait, a bit, the model nearly matches the empirical', is just more 'obstruction to solving the energy future' - not unlike the 'barge' of BS solutions from fringe dwellers, that produces never-ending 'foggy thinking' on which path to take.

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#23
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Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

02/24/2011 7:40 PM

There are people working on real solutions, they just aren't posting on CR4........they're too busy.

In the meantime, if we could all scale back our consumption it would help immensely. I scale back more from an economic standpoint, but the end result is the same. Plus, I like the idea of becoming independent from the grid........all grids.

Just bought the rest of the seeds for my vegetable garden today. It's not about saving the planet, we just happen to like good, fresh, free food.

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#24

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

03/07/2011 7:32 AM

If average wind speeds are in fact dropping (a big if), this may show that the global warming we have been experiencing (and benefiting from) is slowing and starting to reverse.

The sun provides the energy in the winds.

Major wind systems are driven by pressure differences which in turn are generated by temperature differences - especially between the land and the sea.

With higher surface temperatures, the sea rise will lag the land rise and, in particular, the up welling of deep ocean water will stay at about 4 C.

The higher the surface temperatures, the greater the available pressure differences to drive the winds. (During an ice age the winds increase due to significant areas of land being colder than the sea.)

Local factors then seriously modify this to give the actual winds we experience.

If warming is starting to reverse, these gradients will start to reduce consequently reducing wind speeds.

Interesting possibility. Perhaps the Russian climate scientists who predicted the start of global cooling before the 2020's are right after all? Who knows.

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#25
In reply to #24

Re: Is the Bloom off the (Wind Power) Rose?

04/02/2011 3:03 AM

I think we have all the winds they have lost or we had it last winter. Seems the cold winds never stopped last winter here in the Tennessee mountains.

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