General or Technology
This paper documents the results of an in-field test at the Maple Ridge wind energy facility in New York to determine the effectiveness of using an experimental acoustic bat deterrent to reduce bat mortality. The executive summary excerpted below suggests the results were inconclusive. Most bat experts remain unconvinced that acoustic deterrence will be a suitable mitigation approach to reduce bat fatalities at existing turbines.
Written in 2000 by the Country Guardian, the UK's leading 'action group', this report addresses comprehensively wind issues in the UK. As one of the first papers of its kind, it is generally viewed as a 'classic' and 'required reading' for those interested in becoming thoroughly familiar with the diverse impacts of industrial wind.
Editor's Note: Recently updated, Elizabeth Mann's extensive research on the deceptive measures employed by proponents of industrial wind energy in the UK at both the national and local level should prove quite useful to opponents of wind energy in the UK.
This report focuses on the effects of wind
farms on air defense and missile warning radars and the resulting potential impact on
military readiness. Its scope is limited to these specific subjects and is based on the
current level of understanding regarding interactions between such defense systems and
state-of-the-art wind turbines.........
The results from those flight trials documented that
state-of-the-art utility-class wind turbines can have a significant impact on the operational
capabilities of military air defense radar systems. The results demonstrated that the large
radar cross section of a wind turbine combined with the Doppler frequency shift
produced by its rotating blades can impact the ability of a radar to discriminate the wind
turbine from an aircraft. Those tests also demonstrated that the wind farms have the
potential to degrade target tracking capabilities as a result of shadowing and clutter
"New York has the potential to generate a significant share of its electrical energy requirements through the use of indigenous renewable resources such as wind."
"In response to emerging market conditions, and in recognition of the unique operating
characteristics of wind generation, the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) and
New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) commissioned a
joint study to produce empirical information that will assist the NYISO in evaluating the
reliability implications of increased wind generation. The work was divided into two phases.
Phase 1, Preliminary Overall Reliability Assessment, was completed in early 2004. This initial
phase provided a preliminary, overall, screening assessment of the impact of large-scale wind
generation on the reliability of the New York State Bulk Power System (NYSBPS).
This document was prepared by General Electric International, Inc. in Schenectady, NY. It is
submitted to THE NEW YORK STATE ENERGY RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY (NYSERDA).
In the Executive Summary, GE argues that 'imbalance' penalties should not be imposed on wind: "subimbalance penalties should not be imposed on wind generation. Wind projects would need to settle discrepancies between their forecast and actual outputs in the energy balancing market. However, because wind is largely nondispatchable, any additional penalties for imbalance should be eliminated. [emphasis added] The FERC Order 888 allows imbalance penalties to be applied to generators that operate outside of their schedule. As applied in New York, any “overgeneration” can be accepted without payment and any “undergeneration” is priced at the greater of 150% of the spot price or $100/MWh. Strict application of these policies in the MAPS analysis performed would result in the loss of roughly 90% of the wind generation revenue, which would be disastrous to their future development."(page 2.8)
..neither renewable energy nor greater energy efficiency can provide the complete solution to the shortfall we face. This will depend on securing energy supplies from abroad, in new nuclear power stations to replace those becoming obsolete and replacing older coal-fired stations with cleaner, more efficient technology.
Link to recent program aired in the UK
This important document examines the real cost of wind power after factoring in accomodations for wind's variable nature and the need to site projects long distances from load.
Wind generated electricity requires back up capacity of conventional power stations. This capacity is required to deliver electricity to consumers when wind supply is falling short. To have the non-wind power stations ramp up or down to compensate for the stochastic wind variations causes extra efficiency loss for such power stations. How much efficiency is lost in this way and how much extra fuel is required for this extra balancing of supply and demand is unknown. In this article we attempt to make an educated guess.
The extra fuel required for the efficiency loss must be added to the fuel required building and installing the wind turbines and the additions to the power cable network. While these extra requirements may be too small to notice when the installed wind power is a small fraction of the total capacity, matters change when wind capacity becomes significant. Based on the German situation with 23 GW installed wind power we show that it becomes doubtful whether wind energy results in any fuel saving and CO2 emission reduction. What remains are the extra investments in wind energy. The authors are formerly with Shell & STW of the Netherlands. They can be reached by e-mail at these addresses: email@example.com and