‘Free as the Wind’: The True Cost of Wind Energy

(18H) 12/3/13
Green activists preach about renewable energy sources, using words like ‘holistic’ and ‘sustainable’. Nor is it sustainable. We’ve previously looked at the reliance of giant wind turbines on rare earth minerals such as neodymium. The Daily Mail (UK) takes a close look at the state of environmental stewardship in the People’s Republic’s rare earth mining industry.
The reality is that, as Britain flaunts its environmental credentials and unspoiled moors and mountains with thousands of wind turbines, it is contributing to a vast man-made lake of poison in northern China. The ‘green’ companies profiting from the demand for wind turbines would prefer you knew nothing about. Look closely at the pictures accompanying the article. Near the metals refinery, there is a toxic tailings pit that looks like the surface of the moon; not a blade of grass will grow. It measures six miles across.
I distrust the EPA: In their first 30 years or so they did a decent job of cleaning up our skies and waterways. Their current push to regulate carbon dioxide is not about cleaning up the environment (as CO2 is not toxic or harmful to anyone’s health as a constituent of 0.4% of the atmosphere); regulation of CO2 is about control of the economy, pure and simple. If you control CO2 you control every factory and just about anything that moves.
The UK has instituted a measure called the Renewable Obligation (RO), a governmental mandate which increases proportions of renewables in the electrical generating mix. Two problems with that: 1) wind energy is unreliable, necessitating conventional backup power for those times (especially in winter) when demand is high and the wind is not blowing; and 2) wind energy is expensive, roughly twice the cost of conventionally-generated electricity.
Generous state subsidies to reenewable energy producers are passed on to the consumers’ utility bills, in effect a non-tax tax. By 2020, when 15% of total energy consumption (meaning 30% of electricity) must come from renewables, it is estimated that the cost of electricity will increase by nearly a third for both residential and industrial users. By 2020, environmental regulation will be adding 31 percent to our [residential] bills. That’s £160 [$258] green tax out of and average annual bill of £512 [$825]. As costs rise, more people will be driven into fuel poverty.
Sources—red state, steve maley, the daily mail,


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