web analytics
August 30, 2014 / 4 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat (L) visits the JewishPress.com booth at The Event. And the Winners of the JewishPress.com Raffle Are…

Congratulations to all the winners of the JewishPress.com raffle at The Event



NIMBYs, Hostages, and the European Wind Wars

Nobody wants a wind turbine in his back yard.
Seriously, would you put a wind farm here? (View of Ferrieres-Poussarou looking toward the Mediterranean Sea.

Seriously, would you put a wind farm here? (View of Ferrieres-Poussarou looking toward the Mediterranean Sea.
Photo Credit: RussP

Those darned Europeans are so attached to their picturesque views.  When it comes to wind power and wind-turbine farms, the honeymoon is over.  The bloom is off the rose.  Rate-payers, homeowners, holiday-makers: if you’re wind, it turns out that Europeans can quit you.

A growing annoyance

It was being reported ominously, two years ago, that the Dutch – the Western world’s quintessential pioneers of wind power – were really starting to be over wind.  Not only is it expensive and unreliable; it’s just so…unsightly.  In the 21st century, we aren’t talking pretty, old-fashioned windmills that creak gently and make the Netherlands look its postcard-landscape best.  We’re talking about those towering monstrosities in vast phalanges that whir menacingly, slaughter birds, and mar world-heritage vistas – all while, who knows, causing cancer to boot.

One year ago, UK Minister of Energy John Hayes caused great rejoicing in the land – probably the first such event ever in human history – by proposing to put a hard cap on the number of wind farms that can be erected in the United Kingdom.  Daily Mail author Christopher Booker pointed out the following at the time:

[T]he amount of power [wind turbines] generate is so derisory that, even now, when we have built 3,500 turbines, the average amount of power we get from all of them combined is no more than what we get from a single medium-size, gas-fired power station, built at only fraction of the cost.

No one would dream of building windfarms unless the Government had arranged to pay their developers a subsidy of 100 per cent on all the power they produce, paid for by all of us through a hidden charge on our electricity bills.

Equally telling are the titles of related stories appended to his editorial:

Nobody wants a wind turbine in his back yard.  U-G-L-Y, they ain’t got no alibi.  They ugly! Problem is, in a place like Europe, offshore wind is in people’s back yards too, just as it is in, say, Massachusetts.  Folks don’t want offshore wind farms too close to shore.  They ruin the view, interfere with the commercial fishing, and make boating and other water activities less pleasant.  They also threaten the UNESCO world-heritage designations of beloved national landmarks, which are usually major tourist attractions and money-makers for local economies.

Moving the wind farms further offshore isn’t a solution, however.  Doing that just makes the electricity way too expensive per megawatt-hour for even the most power-hungry consumer or optimistic utility regulator.  Germany, which jumped into wind power with all 162 million feet, has been finding not only that residential consumers decline to support uneconomic electricity sources by keeping their grid-supplied energy use up, but that industrial users are being priced out of competition with foreign companies that have the advantage of cheaper energy.  In the meantime, overenthusiasm for offshore wind has already produced company closures, major layoffs, and idled capital in the German wind industry: a blow to tens of thousands of workers and investors in an already sluggish economy.

A looming choice

Europeans have a choice to make, and it isn’t going to wait much longer.  The privileged, subsidized position of “renewable” electric power is doing what it was supposed to in Europe:  driving out coal and nuclear power-generation sources.  Literally, it is driving them out: threatening to kill them, by making them impossible to run at a profit.  The reason is that, although coal and nuclear power generation are reliable, where wind and solar are not, coal and nuclear have the operational limitation that they can’t easily be cut back or shut down and then restarted.  They don’t degrade gracefully when demand is low.

Coal and nuclear are superb – reliable and cost-efficient – when they generate the power grid baseline, with natural gas and renewables adding power, either on-demand (gas) or when they can, given the weather conditions (wind and solar).  It doesn’t work the other way around, however.  Coal and nuclear produce too much power, and necessarily must produce too much, in a grid-infrastructure role, to function economically in the role of additional power sources.  It’s against their nature, at least in today’s technological conditions, to only be needed or available sometimes.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “NIMBYs, Hostages, and the European Wind Wars”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
ISIS in Quneitra
Updates from Kuneitra, Syria [video]
Latest Indepth Stories
IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz reviewing maps on the Golan Heights.

The bad news is that ISIS and Al Qaeda are on the Syrian Golan. The good news is that every terrorist in Syria is killing each other.

TorahScroll AoT17

The congregants, Ethiopians spanning generations, were beaming with joy and pride.

Troodler-082914

The withdrawal from the Gaza Strip nine years ago did not enhance Israel’s security.

Eisenstock-082914

How does a soldier from a religious home fall in love with a soldier from a non- religious kibbutz?

In 19th century entire ancient Jewish communities fled Palestine to escape brutal Muslim authorities

Responsibility lies with both the UN and Hamas, and better commitments should have been demanded from both parties in the ceasefire.

But the world is forever challenging our Jewish principle and our practices.

If this is how we play the game, we will lose. By that I mean we will lose everything.

Reportedly, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates have formed a bloc that seeks to counter Islamist influence in the Middle East.

One wonders how the IDF could be expected to so quickly determine the facts.

While there is no formula that will work for everyone, there are some strategies that if followed carefully and consistently can help our children – and us – gain the most from the upcoming school year.

We risk our lives to help those who do what they can to kill to our people .

Twain grasped amazingly well the pulse of the Jewish people.

The entertainment industry appears divided about the conflict between Israel and Hamas.

More Articles from J. E. Dyer
ZIM Piraeus in happier days. (Image: ShipSpotting.com user b47b56)

ZIM Piraeus isn’t Israeli-owned or flagged, incidentally, it is Greek operated.

Hellfire-300x194

Obama is transparent, if you read his oracular signs with the right key.

ISIS has no intention of “marching on” Baghdad. The Sunni affiliates of ISIS are going to disrupt life there.

Oslo’s moment of unchallenged American supremacy and the illusion of unforced global stasis, passed.

Could the Obamas be any more “let ‘em eat cake”?

The Obama administration wants to take over the short-term financial services industry.

The topics are “The Reagan Strategy,” and the “Iran Time Bomb.”

Maybe it’s a tad undiplomatic to announce it publicly before telling Israel’s prime minister about it?

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/j-e-dyer/nimbys-hostages-and-the-european-wind-wars/2013/11/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: