Wind Turbines, Nimbyism, Fish and Chips

             I love it when I’m right.  I admit that I don’t bat 1.000, but good hits are nice.  In today’s NY Times Roger Cohen (Britain Goes Nimby) writes that 82% of Brits favor wind power, yet in every community in England where turbines are proposed the citizens have fought them with the proverbial teeth and nails.

             Cohen’s disdain for environmental hypocrisy is not concealed:  “As they adopt nimbyism in droves, touchy-feely, green, politically correct types who only eat bacon from locally reared pampered pigs and would hug any hypothetical wind farm morph into rabid reactionaries. They bleat about 350-foot eyesores, turbine noise and animal suffering.”

             Could it be that there is some common DNA between Americans and the folks in Great Britain?

             I’ve written about this phenomenon in this forum several times before, noting that the only places reliable wind sources exist are mountain ridges and panoramic seashores.  It’s an environmentalist’s Catch 22.  Neither choice produces desirable results.

            If we can harness the renewable energy from the tides, the wind and the sun we can wean ourselves from the politically destabilizing and environmentally destructive effects of fossil fuels.  But doing so often places the ultimate decisions not in the hands of federal and state regulatory agencies but in the laps of county commissions and Boards of Adjustment who must decide how the local zoning ordinance should be applied.

             For a review of my past posts on this subject, please feel free to read Earth, Wind, Fire . . . and Google or Destroying the Environment to Save it.

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One Response to “Wind Turbines, Nimbyism, Fish and Chips”
  1. Tom:

    Thank you for your good thoughts here. Two corrections:

    1) wind energy opposition has nothing to do with being a NIMBY. That is a false characterization created by wind proponents, that perverts reality. The core of wind resistance is that there has been no scientific assessment that wind energy is a cost-beneficial energy option — yet it is being FORCED on citizens through things like Senate Bill 3.

    2) There is nowhere that “reliable wind sources exist” — unless you have a new definition of “reliable.” Reliable in the electrical energy business equates to what is called “Capacity Value.” The Capacity value of a nuclear facility is about 100%. The Capacity Value of a typical wind development is well less than 10%.

    For more science-based information on these matters, please look at EnergyPresentation.Info

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