Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Wind and the Lying

Let's cut to the chase. Actually, let's jump to the end, the article closes with statements about the big drop in sales of wind generators following the disappearance of credit in the economy. The same final paragraph also noted that sales of wind generators depend on subsidies. Unless a wind generator can produce power for less than other methods, there is no basis for using the technology.

Wind generators themselves will become more expensive if legislation forces their use. Therefore, General Electric and Vestas are lobbying Congress for more laws that will ensure the continued success of their wind-generator operations. In fact, Environmentalists and their lobbyists will continue their work to convince Americans of the global threat presented by "reckless" and unchecked energy consumption.

In the 1950s, when Americans feared communist expansion, President Dwight Eisenhower alerted citizens to the dangers of the Military-Industrial Complex. The cozy relationship between government and defense contractors was accepted by most voters. Most believed in the Domino Theory and other scenarios describing the Moscow's plans for world dominanation. Americans, especially after World War II, were ready to believe that the best offense was a strong defense.

Americans were ready and willing to spend heavily to ensure that no nations would launch violent and destructive military campaigns to conquer and annex other states. However, Eisenhower understood this aspect of the American spirit. With that in mind, he warned Americans about an arms build-up. An expensive escalation of military strength leading to the creation of large stockpiles of nuclear weapons and complex systems for deploying them if war should break out. Intercontinental missile systems, long-range bombers, aircraft carriers, submarines, etc.

The vast arsenal worked as hoped. No shots were fired. Deterrence won the Cold War. About 30 years after Eisenhower spoke to the nation about the risks of a costly Military Industrial Complex, the Soviet Union collapsed, destroyed by its own fear and inability to maintain parity with the US military.

Today we are looking at the rise of the Environmental-Industrial Complex. Another cozy relationship between government and an industry. The Environmentalists are as intense and fervent as the old anti-Communists. Probably more driven, a result of the difficulty of describing the danger they see. Today we have a president whose attitude is "better safe than sorry." He's already declared a de facto war on the forces he believes have harmed the environment.

Unfortunately, he's escalating a war on a crucial element of our national strength: Cheap energy. He wants to raise the cost of energy. His policies -- those driven by the Environmental Industrial Complex -- will do the trick. But raising the cost of energy for an economy has about the same effect as cutting back supplies of clean drinking water available to the citizens. Imposing higher energy costs and attempting to restrict the future of an essential industry to fight an invisible and unidentifiable foe is extreme folly.


GE, Vestas Lead U.S. Wind Turbine Sales, Taking 56% of Market

April 12 (Bloomberg) -- General Electric Co. and Vestas Wind Systems A/S, the world’s two largest suppliers of wind turbines, sold a record 4,648 megawatts in the U.S. last year, taking 56 percent of the total market, an industry group said.

Installations rose 58 percent to 8,300 megawatts. Wind turbines accounted for 42 percent of all new generating capacity in the U.S., almost matching the additions of natural gas fueled plants, the Washington-based American Wind Energy Association said today in a statement.

Juno, Florida-based FPL Group Inc.’s NextEra Energy Resources ranked first among companies that install wind turbines, with 25 percent of U.S. generation totaling 25,300 megawatts, enough to power 7 million homes, the group said.

That’s about 2.5 percent of total U.S. power supply. The U.S. leads the world in wind-power capacity.

Texas and Iowa have the most wind generation, followed by California and Minnesota. Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy Inc. leads regulated utilities in wind-power production. Minnesota leads the nation in the share of power coming from wind at 7.5 percent.

President Barack Obama set a goal of doubling U.S. renewable energy over three years. Wind turbines are typically the cheapest source of renewable energy.

Employment in the wind industry rose 70 percent from a year ago to 85,000, the trade association said.

GE, based in Fairfield, Connecticut, retained the lead in largest number of wind turbines installed, with a 43 percent market share, the group said. Randers, Denmark-based Vestas had 13 percent, followed by Siemens AG and Suzlon Energy Ltd. with 9 percent each.

Developers were taking advantage of federal and state incentives to encourage renewable energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Installations this year have stalled as a credit crisis dried up financing, the wind association said.

2 Comments:

Blogger Torrance Stephens - All-Mi-T said...

them electric companies making big loot

9:43 AM  
Blogger no_slappz said...

torrance,

Utility companies must answer to Public Utilities Control Authorities in every state.

Their returns are limited by state governments.

Any company can improve, but utilities are government-regulated companies that are subjected to controls that go further than bank regulations in many areas -- like maximum allowable profits.

Hence, if it appears a utility is earning too much, then the government has to look into things.

Meanwhile, wind and solar power are decades from making a difference. Wind will always be a small part of our energy production. Solar has greater possibilities, but electricity from solar is still way way way more expensive that the power from traditional utility companies.

4:08 PM  

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