“Gov. Jerry Brown in April signed into law a mandate that a third of the electricity used in California come from renewable sources, including wind and solar, by 2020. The new law is the most aggressive of any state.”
So states aÂ paragraph from a June 6Â article in the LA Times titled, Wind power turbines in Altamont Pass threaten protected birds. The story talks specifically of golden eagles but it could apply to many many species of birds and bats.
It goes on…The fate of the Bay Area’s golden eagles highlights the complex issues facing wildlife authorities, wind turbine companies and regulatory agencies as they promote renewable energy development in the Altamont Pass and across the nation and adds urgency to efforts to make the technology safer for wildlife, including bats, thousands of which are killed each year by wind turbines.
And therein lies the uncomfortable truth of wind power everywhere: it is far from harmless, far from “green,” far from being the knight-on-a-white-horse saving us from evil carbon.
The reason wind continues to be held in such high regard by enviros everywhere is quite simple: It’s not big oil. That’s it.
Wind power will never deliver us from dependence on carbon fuels, and shouldn’t. But that doesn’t stop the trumpeting of its so-called merits from every pair of ill-informed lips.
Big Oil, though? Well, they’re just evil, vile corporations existing only to gouge the public of every last dollar in a quest to dominate the world, pollute the earth, and makeÂ lives miserable. So they tell us. And they target Big Oil with lawsuits, stand in the way of oil developments, and curtail any effort toÂ expand domestic drilling.
Oil companies (and I include natural gas producers here as well) factorÂ a certain level of litigation settlement money into their yearly budgets, so relentless areÂ attorneys targeting them. Some birds land in oil and die? Wham, lawsuit. And dollars are extracted from the evil corporations (aside: how many of us have Exxon or BP in ourÂ mutual fundsÂ and don’t know it? Just wondering). But if wind turbines kill birds there is not a peep from lawyers, not one sound.
Again from the article: So far, no wind energy company has been prosecuted by federal wildlife authorities in connection with the death of birds protected by the Migratory Bird Act, the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act or the federal Endangered Species Act.
Surprised? I’m not.
Finally, here’s a few quotes to chew on:
“With the right subsidies, wind could become a viable energy source. And, with the right subsidies, gasoline could be made free, and 2-carat diamonds could be given away in cereal boxes. How is it that wind, with a 4000-year head start, is such a small player in the energy scene? Could it be â€” just possibly â€” that the answer has something to do with physics instead of economics and politics?”– Dr. Howard Hayden, Professor Emeritus of Physics, University of Connecticut
“In the end, we remain convinced, the entire state [Va.] will see clearly that wind power … is wrong for our mountains and that those who pursue it are driven not by concern for the environment, but by the opportunity to pocket huge profits offered by huge taxpayer subsidies. When the smoke clears, there can be no other conclusion. Whether reason will triumph over the leverage of powerful special interests remains to be seen.” –Editorial Staff, Roanoke Times
Wind farms are “environmentally damaging money wasters whose large scale use increases power demand. The New Age dream of a world operated by wind farms will remain a dream because the laws of physics do not allow it in an industrialised world. If wind power were economic then oil tankers would be sailing ships.” –Dr. Richard Courtney, internationally recognised expert on energy and climate change
(thanks to DL for bringing this article to my attention)