Thursday, 15 May 2008

Wind Would Power 20% of America for Cost of Four Months in Iraq has run an article about a report of the Department of Energy claiming that 20% of the US electricity demand could be provided by wind power, by 2030. Provided that some $43 billion dollars of investment would flow into the sector. Which is about the same amount of money that the US is wasting on the war in Iraq. This is all great news, but I'm always a bit skeptical about the feasibility of grand projects like this. Wind power is known to be an unreliable source of electricity. It can not provide a base load for the grid (because of the unpredictability of wind patterns) and it can not provide at peak times, when the most power is drawn from the grid. I need to mention at this point, that the problem is not unsolvable, as the clever people of Denmark have found, but I wonder if this issue was addressed in the DOE report.
Still the article makes one important point. That money is being wasted on a grand scale, on meaningless endeavours.

image from wikipedia

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