Wind Energy

why we should use it

Pros On Wind Energy

· Free Fuel: Unlike other forms of electrical generation where fuel is shipped to a processing plant, wind energy generates electricity at the source of fuel, which is free. Wind is a native fuel that does not need to be mined or transported, taking two expensive costs out of long-term energy expenses.

· Price Stability: The price of electricity from fossil fuels and nuclear power can fluctuate greatly due to highly variable mining and transportation costs. Wind can help buffer these costs because the price of fuel is fixed and free.

· Promotes Cost-Effective Energy Production: The cost of wind-generated electricity has fallen from nearly 40¢ per kWh in the early 1980s to 2.5-5¢ per kWh today depending on wind speed and project size.

· Creates Jobs: Wind energy projects create new short and long term jobs. Related employment ranges from meteorologists and surveyors to structural engineers, assembly workers, lawyers, bankers, and technicians. Wind energy creates 30% more jobs than a coal plant and 66% more than a nuclear power plant per unit of energy generated.

· National Security/Energy Independence: Wind turbines diversify our energy portfolio and reduce our dependence on foreign fossil fuel. Wind energy is homegrown electricity, and can help control spikes in fossil fuel cost. Distributed generation facilities, like many community wind projects, provide a safeguard against potential terrorist threats to power plants.

· Supports Agriculture: It is not often a new crop emerges from thin air. Wind turbines can be installed amid cropland without interfering with people, livestock, or production.

· Local Ownership: A significant contribution to the worldwide energy mix can be made by small clusters of turbines or even single turbines, operated by local landowners and small businesses. Developing local sources of electricity means we import less fuel from other states, regions, and nations. It also means our energy dollars are plowed back into the local economy.

· Conserves and Keeps Water Clean: Turbines produce no particulate emissions that contribute to mercury contamination in our lakes and streams. Wind energy also conserves water resources. For example, producing the same amount of electricity can take about 600 times more water with nuclear power than wind, and about 500 times more water with coal than wind.

· Clean Air: Other sources of electricity produce harmful particulate emissions which contribute to global climate change and acid rain. Wind energy is pollution free

· Negligible Greenhouse Gases: The sources of most of our power, coal and natural gas, produce large quantities of greenhouse gases. (Coal much more than natural gas.) Wind power produces none, other than in the manufacture, installation and maintenance of the turbines. On average those greenhouse gases are offset by the clean power the turbines produce within 9 months of operation.

· Mining & Transportation: Harvesting the wind preserves our resources because there no need for destructive resource mining or fuel transportation to a processing facility.

· Land Preservation: Wind farms are spaced over a large geographic area, but their actual "footprint" covers only a small portion of the land resulting in a minimum impact on crop production or livestock grazing.