The Corpus Callosum

Progress in Wind Energy

i-6217b086b10328905783ee52a0c05811-turiguano05.jpgThe government, finally getting wise,
has installed href="http://www.plenglish.com/Article.asp?ID=%7BA602DDD6-4C6E-413C-8299-F951DBA7CC0C%7D&language=EN">100
stations to measure wind velocity in 32 areas.  The
idea tis to get a map of available resources for the generation of wind
power, specifically with the intention of reducing dependence on
foreign
oil.  

There is already a demonstration project with 1.67MW wind generators.
 This
particular
demonstration project is expected to supply about
10WM by the middle of next year.

It is located east of Havana.

Comments

  1. #1 Mark P
    September 26, 2007

    This 30 years after Ronald Reagan killed the alternative energy research started by Jimmy Carter’s administration. If the US had continued along Carter’s path, we would be in far better shape today.

  2. #2 stewart
    September 26, 2007

    I saw a 1976 or 1977 National Geographic lately, presenting articles on energy conservation, alternate fuels, improved fuel economy, etc. We have lost those 30 years, and I want Reagan and the Bushes to give them back

  3. #3 Scott S.
    September 26, 2007

    A wind map of the US has existed for years. I’ve seen copies, and it’s on the internet. Just search on ‘wind map USA’. They’ve been around for years.

    As to those who whine about Republicans killing alternative energy, there is nothing to stop you from investing in an alternative energy company, is there.

    Or starting one yourself? Can’t sell solar or wind power because it’s too expensive? Blame cheap oil. No more, no less, no conspiracy.

  4. #4 Mark P
    September 26, 2007

    Scott, any useful wind resource map must be finely detailed. Large-scale maps are virtually useless, as I’m sure you know.

    I don’t understand your comment. Are you one of those who believe that the free market can solve every problem? Like health care? Or fuel-efficient cars? Or cars that don’t pollute? Or coal-fired generating plants that don’t pollute? Or drug safety? Every one of those is the result of government activity, not the free market.

  5. #5 Mark P
    September 26, 2007

    Opps. The solution to those problems is the result of government activity, except for health care. That one remains a problem because the government is letting the free market solve that one.

  6. #6 bigTom
    September 26, 2007

    Uhhhh, unless I’m reading this thing wrongly, the article was talking about Cuba, not the US. The US has had wind maps for years. Generally the tropics have pretty light winds, perhaps Cuba has some wind sites because it has relatively high mountains.

    Scott, the complaint has been that research on alt energy had been cut back, and remains at a pretty low level. There is quite a lot of investment capital flowing into alt energy these days. The time frame for commercial investment is relatively short, so only things for which the science is reasonably far along will get developed by the private sector. Fundamental research is still needed.

  7. #7 Mark P
    September 26, 2007

    As I mentioned, wind maps are generally large-scale. To find out if a particular location can supply sufficient wind energy to make a windmill worthwhile, you need measurements at that location. Generally, wind maps can give a decent idea of where to start looking. For example, the area where I live in the Southeast US does not have strong enough and consistent enough wind to make it a primary power source. On the other hand, Wyoming does. But you still have to decide where exactly in Wyoming to site a windmill or windmill farm. For that, the existing maps are almost certainly not good enough.

    I mention Wyoming, of course, because there is already at least one large windmill farm there.

    The irony of this story is, of course, that it is in Cuba. Although I doubt that wind energy will ever be a large part of the power supply for the US, it can be useful in certain areas and for certain uses. But wind energy is not the only alternative energy source. Conservation is probably the largest and cheapest source of energy.

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