Saturday, December 01, 2007

More Wind Farms, Pt. 2

Here is more from Newport's Anthony Spiratos. If you're interested, check out http://www.saveoursound.org/. This group has been fighting a windfarm off Nantucket Sound for years. There will be a Pt. 3.


There are so many more things that need to be addressed that will have a negative impact if this flawed wind project is built. By the looks of it the Governor wants it completed and in full operation before he leaves office which would be absolutely disastrous. What I wrote previously is the tip of the iceberg!
These turbines can actually catch fire, spew oil and have oil spills. They only are able to operate 20 years; then it becomes a huge rust farm instead of a wind farm. Also, severe weather affects the wind turbines in devastating ways. Most wind turbines are built to withstand a max of 100 mph winds (ironically the wind turbines must be shut down with winds higher than 50mph). The Hurricane of 38, Carol & Bob were Category 3 or higher with sustained winds of excess of 120 mph.
There are many studies that shed real light on what the wind industry really is and what they don’t want you to know. Eric Rosenbloom, a wind farm researcher and science editor, gives numerous examples of problems with the wind industry which I have cited previously. Some examples of his research are from paper called “A Problem With Wind Power.”
Many studies in Europe have shown that up to 11,200 birds of prey, 350,000 bats, and 3,000,000 small birds are killed each year by wind turbines in Europe. Build-up of salt on off-shore turbine blades has been shown to reduce the power generated by 20%-30%. According to the Department of Defense in a report to the Congressional Defense Committees titled "The Effect of Windmill Farms on Military Readiness" (2006), the wind turbines hurt radar capabilities. This would especially be a problem because of the close proximity to the Navy Base and would cause a gigantic national security issue for the base.
Studies have shown that the effects of residents near wind turbines are horrific. These would affect for Newport, Middletown, Little Compton, Block Island, and Westerly. There is a scientist/physician by the name of Nina Pierpont, MD, PhD. She has documented numerous cases of "Wind Turbines Syndrome" which occur and effect citizens living up to 3 miles away from wind farms. The symptoms of this syndrome include sleep problems (insomnia), headaches, dizziness, unsteadiness, nausea, exhaustion, anxiety, anger, irritability, depression, memory loss, eye problems, problems with concentration and learning, tinnitus (ringing in the ears). Check out her website http://www.ninapierpont.com/. I also find it very interesting that, most of these wind farm companies are owned by fossil fuel and oil companies, which use them for tax breaks and write-offs.
The world however is starting to catch on these last few years to the "great wind scam." In 1998, Norway commissioned a study of wind power in Denmark and concluded that it has "serious environmental effects, insufficient production, and high production costs." Denmark has a population of 5.3 million and has over 6,000 turbines that produced electricity equal to 19% of what the country used in 2002. Yet with 6,000 turbines no conventional power plant has been shut down! They haven’t been shut down because of the intermittency and variability of the wind and, because of this, conventional power plants must be kept running at full capacity to meet the actual demand for electricity.
The Danish government has cancelled plans for three offshore wind farms planned for 2008 and has scheduled the withdrawal of subsidies from existing sites. The development of onshore wind plants in Denmark has effectively stopped.
Another country, Germany reduced the tax breaks to wind power. Domestic construction then drastically slowed in 2004. Switzerland also is cutting subsidies as too expensive and lacking significant benefit. In Germany, utilities are forced to buy renewable energy at sometimes more than 10 times the cost of conventional power, in France 3 times.
Some countries are decommissioning their turbines. The Netherlands decommissioned 90 turbines in 2004. Ireland in December 2003 halted all new wind-power connections to the national grid. In early 2005, they were considering ending state support. In 2005, Spanish utilities began refusing new wind power connections. In 2006 the Spanish government, ended by emergency decree, its subsidies and price supports for big wind. In 2004, Australia reduced the level of renewable energy that utilities are required to buy, dramatically slowing wind-project applications.
I think the way to go if we actually want to save money is to use solar energy. They are now coming up with the technology to use solar powered shingles. They look just like black shingles and when you build a roof the solar cells are built right into the shingles of the roof. Also insulating homes and using energy efficient light bulbs is another great way to reduce energy costs to citizens and allow them to keep much more money in their wallets. If everyone in this country used energy efficient light bulbs we would be able to close 80 major power plants. Now that’s a ton of energy saved.
The Governor’s so called 132 page wind power study is clearly one sided, offering none of the drawbacks. It clearly is not taking into account the things that are being found out about the wind farm industry in many countries across the world. The politicians up in Providence are giving us a non-solution while the big wind power companies worth billions walk away laughing with millions upon millions of taxpayer’s hard earned money.
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