Wind Power Facts

This page has some articles about industrial wind power. What makes them different, is that they aren’t written by lobbyists.

My name is John Droz, jr, and I’m a physicist who has also been an environmental activist for some 25 years. I’ve been a member of the Sierra Club, the Adirondack Council, the Association for the Protection of the Adirondacks, and the Resident’s Committee to Protect the Adirondacks, among others. [The views expressed here are mine as a scientist promoting science, and may not be consistent with the political agendas of those organizations. None of this is about me anyways. It all comes down to this: do you want our energy and environmental policies determined by Science or lobbyists? So far the lobbyists are pitching a shutout.]

The main point of all of my documents is to educate citizens about the basics of industrial wind power, a highly complex technical matter. [A major belief of mine is the KISS (Keep It Simple) philosophy, and my writings attempt to incorporate that principle.]

What then? The objective would be for educated citizens to demand that their government only support (and allow on the grid) energy solutions that have been verified as legitimate using scientific methodology. Science is not a body of data, but is really a methodology. Science without the Scientific Method is just a set of opinions.

That is my key message here: we do have serious energy (and environmental) problems, and we should insist on Sound Scientific Solutions for such matters.

[Note 1: Wind energy is the more technically correct term, but since most citizens are more familiar with the phrase wind power, I will use the latter here.]
[Note 2: This is not a NIMBY issue for me, as no wind power projects are proposed for my community.]
[Note 3: “Industrial wind power” refers to large scale ventures designed to provide electrical power on a commercial basis. This is an entirely different product (for several technical reasons) from home or boat based wind power generators, which can sometimes make economic sense.]

The ONLY legitimate reason industrial wind power should exist today is for it to live up to its promoter’s assurances that it will meaningfully (and affordably) help reduce greenhouse gas emissions (e.g. CO2). However (since neither one of these conditions are being met), in almost all cases, wind power development is instead sold to a community based on the financial incentives offered by the developers.

This, of course, is a completely different and unrelated consideration. As the picture on the right shows, the only thing green in this whole matter is the substantial profit being made by the developers and their paid supporters. So begins a series of serious incongruities.

It is an unfortunate indictment of our society today that so many important decisions are primarily based on “what’s in it financially for me.” One obvious consequence of this shortsighted and selfish perspective is that we get what we deserve.

To those people who say wind power is good because it brings money to their community, then we would expect them to be leading the charge promoting other local economic developments that would also bring money to their community, like: a regional landfill, a chemical plant, a prison for terrorists, etc.

Courtesy of WindToons.
See their site for many other insightful representations.

I am STRONGLY in favor of reducing the pollutants of fossil fuel power facilities (like coal), and of aggressively investigating other good options for producing electricity. My main concern is that we should not be wasting time and money on illusionary solutions — like some of the alternatives being promoted by those with vested financial interests in them.
A critical fact to understand is that just because a power source is an alternative, or a renewable, does NOT automatically mean that it is better than any conventional or fossil fuel source! In other words, electrical energy alternatives/renewables should not be given a free pass on common sense scrutiny, and the use of scientific methodology, in objectively evaluating their merits. (See near the bottom of this page for status of Common Sense.)

Whether an alternative/renewable is acceptable is a highly technical matter that should be decided on the basis of a comprehensive, independent, objective and transparent evaluation of three key conditions:
a) its technical performance, b) the economics of the power produced, and c) its FULL environmental impact.

All independent evidence to date indicates that industrial wind power fails on all three of these critical counts.

Now, does stating that fact make me “anti-green?” How absurd a conclusion that would be! No, it makes me “anti-illusion” or “pro-science.” And I fully support legitimate “renewables” like industrial geothermal.

My articles discussing various aspects of this issue have been grouped into two categories:
1 – those of interest to anyone who wants to know more about industrial wind power, and
2 – those that relate to local groups who are organizing to resist the wind power conglomerate. As a bonus, a few selected documents written by other experts in the energy field are also referenced. Here is an example: Key Industry Terms in the wind energy business, is an important paper by energy expert Glenn Schleede that does a fine job of explaining many of the technical concepts that we are dealing with. Please read this closely!

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