The challenges of wind power
Billions of dollars of investment during the past decade have created a wind-power corridor that stretches more than 170 miles along the Columbia in Eastern Washington and Oregon, vaulting the Northwest to the leading edge of national efforts to develop this renewable energy source.
But the fickle, roller-coaster nature of generating electricity from the wind is also placing large new strains on efforts to manage the regional power grid.
May 28, 2010
by Hal Bernton
in The Seattle Times
Booming industry a complex interplay with hydropower
CENTERVILLE - Along the ridge-top flanks of the Columbia River, hundreds upon hundreds of wind turbines rise from wheat fields and sagebrush.
On a blustery spring day, these turbines can crank out more than twice the power of the Northwest's sole nuclear power plant. Then, on hot days in the summer, when the winds go still, the output plunges.
The turbines represent perhaps the most dramatic change to the regional power-supply system since the construction of Bonneville Dam launched the era of federal power.
Billions of dollars of investment during the past decade have created a... [continue via Web link]