I have lived in Wyoming for 30 years. One outstanding element of Wyoming is the wind. It can blow 25 to 30 mph for several days. I am always taking pictures of McDonald’s golden arches on the ground, shingles blown off, trailers blown over. The wind was part of Wyoming life and I embraced it.
December 2nd we had 40 mph wind with higher gusts.
Enter greed, lies and enviros. And a fundamental lack of understanding of energy sources and a tendency of Wyomingites to flippantly say “The wind blows all the time” (which it does not—it’s just memorable when it does). What we get is greedy ranchers and huge corporations (oil industry included) sucking in as much of the US citizen’s money as they can for themselves, throwing up monstrous bird killing monuments to the persuasiveness of Preacher Al Gore’s message. The prairie is torn up, roads cut, huge concrete bases poured, etc. When the wind blows, so does the dust. In huge clouds. If a coal mine caused that much dust, fines would be levied. Sacred wind is exempt from virtually all rules, exempted from the ESA via “take permits” and considered rural even as we term it industrial wind.
The wind industry is addicted to massive government handouts and is fighting to keep getting their fix (just as any good addict would). Ranchers and farmers love the “money for nothing, get your checks for free”. Sure, your neighbor may now consider you a greedy sell-out, but that 5 to 6 figure income for sitting on the couch makes up for it. The complete selfishness of this industry is appalling. This from an industry that complained bitterly that big oil was greedy and just did not care. Now this industry destroys the environment and pits neighbors against each other, running over anyone who gets in their way.
Thousands of these ecodisasters dot the once open spaces of the USA. When the wind blows, they make electricity, if it blows fast enough and not too fast. Many people are clueless as to how damaging high winds are to turbines. Energy output tops out at around 28 to 30 mph, so the faster wind just stresses the turbines. People do not realize the habitat damage exceeds oil and gas damage in many cases. People just like the feel-good lies fed to them by those promoting the notion “wind energy is free and good”. It is not free and it is not good.
Thanks to the wind power scam, now when I hear the wind, I think of greed, selfishness and destroying ecosystems. The wind is now the enemy.
Note: In the 40 mph wind on the 2nd, one of eleven turbines was not turning in the Chevron wind plant. That’s approximately 9% of the rated capacity of the plant being lost on what should be a blue-ribbon day for wind.