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siegal, very good diary! Excellent.
You have given us almost too much to work with.

I do have a couple of points:
1. Ohio's wind energy potential actually exceeds the electricity demand of the entire state of Ohio
It always seems like a no brainer, that there is so much potential energy all around us, for example: How much energy does a hurricane release?

  1. The article that Robert posted: Alberta turns to natural gas after wind lessens reliability, brought up some important points. One being that we need to create more energy diversity than worry about one source suiting all our needs.

  2. One of my favorite bloggers on the environment wrote the post entitled: Random Nature #119. I know not very thrilling title but has a lot of good information on this subject.

  3. As far as putting windmills on the Great Lakes, I believe it will face the same problems as Nantucket sound wind mills. Bodies of water are usually "the commons" and as such there will always be one party or another that will loose out on its free lunch.

In conclusion, I like all the good news and information that is coming out. As I read your post (a siegel) and Rogue Pundits, I have the feeling that a lot of projects on renewable energy sources are more 'feel good' moves than actually finding the best sources of energy in the most efficient method.

Rutherfordian ------------------------------ RDRutherford
by Ronald Rutherford (rdrradio1 -at- msn -dot- com) on Sat Apr 21st, 2007 at 07:41:23 PM EST
There is one difference, though, between Lake Erie and Nantucket, which is that there are a lot of people, including small business owners with investments in various faltering urban and small town economies, that are going to say, "View? Shmiew!" if it means jobs and expanded economic activity.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.
by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Sat Apr 21st, 2007 at 09:04:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
if it means jobs and expanded economic activity.

Unfortunately the jobs appear to be temporary (for the life of the installation) and most of the profits from the development get hoovered out of the community to the carpet-bagger developers and the Wall Streeters who finance them.

In the US the community probably doesn't even get the new community bus shelter the developers toss them over here in the UK for not resisting too hard.

What's needed is a "Community Energy Partnership" development model that keeps the turbine in community ownership and pays a community dividend in perpetuity in energy or sales proceeds from energy.

It's not too hard use an LLC to achieve that result.

 

"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson

by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Sun Apr 22nd, 2007 at 12:57:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The real jobs don't come from the profits in any event, they come from the costs. The costs of manufacturing the windplants, the costs of installing them, the costs of maintaining them.

First, if Ohio rolls out, first, 20% of its current electricity consumption, and then proceeds to go offshore and starts exporting power, the "installation phase" is by no means temporary. It may be temporary for any given location, but its an ongoing economic stimulus in the state.

Second, the ongoing impact will be a greater share of consumption spending by Ohions remaining in the state.

Now, certainly a state-sponsored financing system that provides community financial dividends, over and above financing costs, will boost that further. But we are not going to get that state-sponsored financing system by trying to minimize the overall job creating potential of the windplants themselves ... to get that, we need to point out the full job creating potential of the windplants themselves, and then point out how it can be leveraged still further with public ownership of the wind generators.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Sun Apr 22nd, 2007 at 02:51:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
  • for the great link
  • for the thoughts
  • for the nice words

Re Cape Wind ... the NIMBYites are horribly counter-productive. But, that is in 'nature reserve' type areas rather than off industrial areas and cities.  It is a different coastline.

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!
by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Apr 22nd, 2007 at 12:00:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The "energy potential" refers to exploitable with today's technology ... hurricanes, well, hard to capture and store.

And, absolutely agree that a holistic approach is required.

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!

by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Apr 22nd, 2007 at 12:02:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think that this both an excellent and problemmatic discussion.

  • Wind never provide a majority of electricity ... if storage issues are 'solved', that changes as a potential.  Also, if there is a real, high-quality, national grid, can balance wind across large geographic areas. But, the more important point is that we should have diversified sources -- there is no Silver Bullet solution, just lots of Silver BBs.

  • Wind at 1% of US electricity: Absolutely. But it is growing by 25+% a year, at an accelerating rate (not in percentage, but in total installed). If we can maintain that momentum, it is in the 15-20% range by 2020 ...

And, so on ...

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!
by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Apr 22nd, 2007 at 12:08:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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