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Industrial Wind, Global Warming, and Our Dependence on Fossil Fuels

Windpower will do nothing about our dependence on foreign oil and virtually nothing about global warming, despite the ardent beliefs of its supporters.

Here are some facts for those who believe, without any evidence, that windpower could play a meaningful role in reducing our dependence on foreign energy sources while mitigating the combustion of fossil fuels likely responsible for accelerating global warming.

We consume energy in this country over three broad categories: transportation, home heating, and electricity. Sixty percent of our energy production is targeted toward the first two of these. Consequently, electricity production involves about forty percent of our energy use. Since windpower only contributes to the electricity portion of the problem—the minor portion—it could only very marginally affect, if at all, the majority part of our energy use, the part in which foreign oil is the essential commodity.

As to windpower's effect on our electricity use, you might consult the Energy Source information flyer accompanying your electricity bill. Notice the fuels required to generate nearly all our electricity do not involve oil. The breakdown in Western Maryland is: 53% coal; 7 percent natural gas; 37 percent nuclear; and 1 percent oil. Foreign sources of energy contribute virtually nothing to our production of electricity. And windpower will do nothing to replace the energy needed for home heating and transportation, the energy really stoking the fires of global warming.

Because its production is so “... [truncated due to possible copyright]  
Here are some facts for those who believe, without any evidence, that windpower could play a meaningful role in reducing our dependence on foreign energy sources while mitigating the combustion of fossil fuels likely responsible for accelerating global warming.

We consume energy in this country over three broad categories: transportation, home heating, and electricity. Sixty percent of our energy production is targeted toward the first two of these. Consequently, electricity production involves about forty percent of our energy use. Since windpower only contributes to the electricity portion of the problem—the minor portion—it could only very marginally affect, if at all, the majority part of our energy use, the part in which foreign oil is the essential commodity. 

As to windpower's effect on our electricity use, you might consult the Energy Source information flyer accompanying your electricity bill. Notice the fuels required to generate nearly all our electricity do not involve oil. The breakdown in Western Maryland is: 53% coal; 7 percent natural gas; 37 percent nuclear; and 1 percent oil. Foreign sources of energy contribute virtually nothing to our production of electricity. And windpower will do nothing to replace the energy needed for home heating and transportation, the energy really stoking the fires of global warming.

Because its production is so “piddling,”windpower-generated electricity will not even reduce the burning of fossil fuels below current levels. Yes, it is theoretically possible, assuming that hundreds of thousands of huge wind turbines could miraculously be constructed immediately, for windpower to reduce temporarily the need for new coal plants. However, in about 15 years, even this contribution would be overwhelmed by the monsoon of our increasing demand, projected to be at least two percent annually. Unfortunately, since all the wind rich areas will have been saturated, we'll have to look for other power sources, likely coal, since the wind industry will be tapped out.

Over 2,000-430 foot wind turbines are needed to replace the steady power production of a 1600 MW coalplant. But because windpower is inherently unpredictable, these plants must stand by at 80 percent of their capacity, burning coal all the while, assuring us about our electricity use but also contributing to the precipitous warming of the planet.

Windpower will do nothing about our dependence on foreign oil and virtually nothing about global warming, despite the ardent beliefs of its supporters.


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MAR 9 2006
https://www.windaction.org/posts/1613-industrial-wind-global-warming-and-our-dependence-on-fossil-fuels
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