Not only do we have environmentalists (who are divided, some want to mandate more turbines, the rest are freaked about it) opposing wind turbines because they kill birdies, seems they mess up a radar too.
Wind energy, the crown jewel of President Obama’s green revolution, seems to be encountering a stiff headwind of its own. As we shall see, wind energy is a highly inefficient technology for reliable power generation. The industry which supports it depends entirely on direct tax credits and federally-mandated consumption for its profitability.
This week in wind energy news:
- Wind farms exposed as a threat to homeland security
- Wind subsidies dwarf those for conventional energy sources
- Not coincidentally, wind energy lobbying expenditures grow by leaps and bounds
1. Wind Turbine Projects Run Into Resistance (New York Times, 8/26/10)
BARSTOW, Calif. — The United States military has found a new menace hiding here in the vast emptiness of the Mojave Desert in California: wind turbines.
Moving turbine blades can be indistinguishable from airplanes on many radar systems, and they can even cause blackout zones in which planes disappear from radar entirely. Clusters of wind turbines, which can reach as high as 400 feet, look very similar to storm activity on weather radar, making it harder for air traffic controllers to give accurate weather information to pilots. …
In 2009, about 9,000 megawatts of proposed wind projects were abandoned or delayed because of radar concerns raised by the military and the Federal Aviation Administration, according to a member survey by the American Wind Energy Association. That is nearly as much as the amount of wind capacity that was actually built in the same year, the trade group says. [emphasis added]