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Where are the results of this wind project?

Perhaps some will remember that FSU received a much ballyhooed Maryland grant to study the performance of a wind and solar apparatus built several years ago on the campus. But where is the data showing how this project fared over the last 18 months? How much fuel did the campus save? What were the annual capacity factors? How much energy did the systems provide at peak demand times? Such data and more should have been presented so that the public would know how this equipment really performed. Now, thanks to the nation's taxpayers - the source of the DOE grant - here we go again, onward and upward in the name of energy du jour.

One should applaud efforts to promote accountability through access to information. The Freedom of Information Act is a bulwark of democracy, although it would not be needed if elected officials placed the public's interest ahead of their own.

Hiding information or stonewalling to protect political incompetence, prevent personal embarrassment, or, worse, cover up illegal activity is understandable. And it shouldn't be permissible. Good for those who work for better government by insisting upon transparency.

But this should apply to all receiving public support - not just politicians and their staff. Consider the U.S. Department of Energy's recent $1.5 million grant for a Sustainable Energy Research facility at Frostburg State University, with its wind turbine, solar roof, and energy monitors. A small staff will use the facility to evaluate mainly wind and solar projects.

Perhaps some will remember that FSU received a much ballyhooed Maryland grant to study the performance of a wind and solar apparatus built several years ago on the campus.

But where is the data showing how this project fared over the last 18 months? How much fuel did the campus save? What were the annual capacity... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

One should applaud efforts to promote accountability through access to information. The Freedom of Information Act is a bulwark of democracy, although it would not be needed if elected officials placed the public's interest ahead of their own.

Hiding information or stonewalling to protect political incompetence, prevent personal embarrassment, or, worse, cover up illegal activity is understandable. And it shouldn't be permissible. Good for those who work for better government by insisting upon transparency.

But this should apply to all receiving public support - not just politicians and their staff. Consider the U.S. Department of Energy's recent $1.5 million grant for a Sustainable Energy Research facility at Frostburg State University, with its wind turbine, solar roof, and energy monitors. A small staff will use the facility to evaluate mainly wind and solar projects.

Perhaps some will remember that FSU received a much ballyhooed Maryland grant to study the performance of a wind and solar apparatus built several years ago on the campus.

But where is the data showing how this project fared over the last 18 months? How much fuel did the campus save? What were the annual capacity factors? How much energy did the systems provide at peak demand times? Such data and more should have been presented so that the public would know how this equipment really performed.

Now, thanks to the nation's taxpayers - the source of the DOE grant - here we go again, onward and upward in the name of energy du jour. The reality is that no energy system is sustainable or renewable, although some are better, from the standpoint of human time, than others.

The infatuation with making renewables like wind and solar work at industrial scale seems, well, fatuous, given the physical realities at work. Modern energy systems insist upon highly precise, predictable, dispatchable machine performance. Wind systems are the antithesis of such performance.

There is a round hole/square peg aspect to "integrating" wind energy that would be appropriate to Cinderella's stepsisters as they tried to make Cinderella's slipper fit their outsized feet.

The real work of science insists upon measuring actual performance using dispassionate methods, where researchers have no stake in the outcome. This is not the case with FSU's SER lab. The programs that will be "evaluated" have a stake in being perceived as "successful." And so does the FSU lab.

The whole affair reeks of promotion under the guise of "research," which takes chutzpah and an exquisitely uninformed citizenry.


Source: http://www.times-news.com/a...

NOV 5 2009
http://www.windaction.org/posts/23101-where-are-the-results-of-this-wind-project
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