The True & Staggering Environmental Cost of Wind & Solar Power: Unsustainable Energy Defined

Posted: July 23, 2017 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics

Paul Driessen tells is like it is, and makes a wake up call to governments and private industry to properly assess the costs and impacts of ‘green’ energy.


Where wind turbines are born: just one of China’s rare earth plants.

For the uninitiated, the sight of snow white wind turbines flailing in the breeze in some green field reinforces that feel-good notion that wind power is the crème de la crème of ‘green energy’.

For those in the know, whenever the term ‘green energy’ is trotted out by some starry-eyed hipster or sandal wearing troglodyte, a sense of wild frustration ensues, followed by an urge to throw something solid at their antagonist or to throw them off the top of one of their beloved windmills.

To maintain their faith, the wind worshipper avoids facts like the plague. Mathematics and meaningful statistics are shunned by cultists, too.

Here’s CFACT’s Paul Driessen laying out the numbers and reaching the obvious conclusion that – in relation to so-called ‘green energy’ – the numbers can never stack up.

Monumental, unsustainable environmental impacts

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  1. oldbrew says:

    Looks like they found a way of making wind power even more expensive.

    BBC: World’s first floating wind farm emerges off coast of Scotland

    ‘While the turbines are currently very expensive to make, Statoil believes that in the future it will be able to dramatically reduce costs in the same way that manufacturers already have for conventional offshore turbines’

    Quote: The tower, including the blades, stretches to 175 metres, dwarfing Big Ben

    Each tower weighs 11,500 tonnes
    – – –
    Floating in the North Sea off the east coast of Scotland. Hmmm…

  2. Curious George says:

    The Spanish Armada comes to mind. Francis Drake, where are you?

  3. renewableguy says:

    Monumental, unsustainable environmental impacts
    Paul Driessen
    2 July 2017
    Demands that the world replace fossil fuels with wind, solar, and biofuel energy – to prevent supposed catastrophes caused by man-made global warming and climate change – ignore three fundamental flaws.

    1. In the Real World outside the realm of computer models, the unprecedented warming and disasters are simply not happening: not with temperatures, rising seas, extreme weather, or other alleged problems.

    Illinois just had 12 and 13 inch rains in one storm about 2 days ago. this is the very pattern of global warming. More intense rainfalls.

    8 studies show we did it. The only warming influence is humans. this is very clear in the science and yet there are some in the world who just go with the science and want to believe the fossil fuel propaganda.

  4. renewableguy says:

    Assuming 25 acres per turbine, the turbines would require 4,585,000,000 acres (1,855,500,000 hectares) – 1.3 times the land area of North America! Wells adds:

    this is way way off about land per turbine. It is about a 1/2 acre per turbine. This number is way different than those who do the professional studies.

    In Part II, we address variability, economics, and policy of WWS energy. We estimate that 3,800,000 5 MW wind turbines

    This is a world wide number byy Jacobson. Hugely different.

    [Reply] Recommended spacing between turbines is 7 rotor blade diameters. Average turbine rotor size is now 80m. 560m x 560m = 77 acres

  5. renewableguy says:

    Click to access JDEnPolicyPt1.pdf

    In Part II, we address variability, economics, and policy of WWS energy. We estimate that 3,800,000 5 MW wind turbines

    Click to access Nikolaj_Ager_Hamann.pdf

    72 tons steel per turbine in offshore wind. The turbines in ocean are larger turbines than on land.

    the author from the article referred to has 2,513 tons of steel and cement. I think this one is very very high number. David Wells numbers look way off and very high.

    David Wells number is 35 times higher than the specs from Dong Energy.

    [Reply] “The base of the steel tower is anchored in a platform of more than a thousand tons of concrete and steel rebar, 30 to 50 feet across and anywhere from 6 to 30 feet deep. Pylons may be driven down farther to help anchor the platform.”

  6. What could possibly go wrong with floating wind turbines and their attached cables?

  7. thefordprefect says:

    All wind turbines are not the same:
    These variable speed turbines have no gears, use electronics to synchronize to the grid and can help a black grid recover.

    ENERCON WECs produce clean energy without neodymium

    29.04. 2011

    ENERCON wind energy converters (WECs) generate electricity in an environmentally friendly way without the use of the controversial element, neodymium. The gearless WEC design on which all WEC types – from the E-33/330 kW to the E-126/7.5 MW – are based includes a separately excited annular generator. The magnetic fields required by the generator to produce electricity are created electrically. By design, and unlike the majority of competing products, ENERCON WECs do without permanent magnets whose production requires neodymium.

    Neodymium has made the headlines recently because its extraction partly involves significant environmental damage. China, where neodymium-containing rocks are quarried in mines, is the main supplier of this so-called rare earth element. According to investigations by Germany’s NDR TV station, separation of neodymium from mined rocks results in toxic waste products (Menschen und Schlagzeilen and Panorama television magazines aired on 27 and 28 April). In addition, radioactive uranium and thorium are released by the mining process. These substances find their way into the ground water, heavily contaminating plant and animal life. They are seen as harmful to humans. According to the reports, part of the locals at the neodymium production sites in Baotou in northern China are already seriously ill.

    ENERCON feels that these environmental and health aspects support its choice of WEC design. “We are a high-tech company that sets great store by environmental protection,” says ENERCON Managing Director Hans-Dieter Kettwig. “Our choice to rely on separately excited generators was the right one, not only from a technological but also from an environmental point of view.” According to Kettwig, renewable energies need to be viewed in their entirety in order to offer a convincing alternative. Producing clean energy is one thing; however, sustainability in production is just as important.

  8. tallbloke says:

    Thanks Ford. My 38 year old Moto Guzzi motorcycle has a field coil activated generator in it, and I had wondered why fecking great big wind turbines needed permanent magnets.

    So why do the majority use them? Is it because an activated coil generator itself consumes a proportion of the electricity the turbines produce?

  9. renewableguy says:

    [Reply] Recommended spacing between turbines is 7 rotor blade diameters. Average turbine rotor size is now 80m. 560m x 560m = 77 acres

    That space in between is all usable by the landowner. So in effect the 77 acres isn’t valid.

  10. tallbloke says:

    But not useable by countryside amenity users, raptors and other birds, bats, nearby housedwellers suffering the infrasound sicknesses they cause or hang gliders, light aircraft etc. Inefficient, costly half baked technology the taxpayer is forced to subsidise by bad laws.

    All the hassle for this:

    Shalegas update from GWPF

    Click to access Shaleupdate.pdf

  11. tallbloke says:

    Meanwhile our Govt is about to feed another £250million of our tax money to its favourite cronies to no effect. There are already plenty of tech companies out there working hard to develop this technology.

  12. oldbrew says:

    For ‘investment’ read ‘gamble’ – with tax revenues.