Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Blown Wind

Is Windpower the solution to our energy needs? This article in Slate suggests that is not. Recently when Texas experienced a heat wave very little of its windpower capacity was of any use:
Put another way, only about 5 percent of the state's installed wind capacity was available when Texans needed it most. Texans may brag about the size of their wind sector, but for all of that hot air, the wind business could only provide about 0.8 percent of the state's electricity needs when demand was peaking.
The problem with windpower is not simply reliability (the wind does not always blow), but the relationship between wind and peak loads. When it is very hot the wind is less likely to be blowing and that is when the demand for electricity is at its highest. Windpower adds to non peak capacity, but then you still need coal and nuclear or whatever for peak loads.

I think the only green thing about the green jobs created by windpower is the currency we waste in the process.

1 comment:

建枫 said...

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