If cars were financed like turbines (theoretical example):
Breeze 2011 is the newest weapon against global warming. The cost of building the Breeze is $200,000. Subsidies, grants and tax credits give the manufacturer $120,000 per car. The Breeze retails for $180,000.
Goverment funds also pay lot rent for the car dealership to assure the dealer will stay in business. Dealer must have 20% of their inventory in Breezes. They are not allowed to replenish inventory until the Breezes are gone, lest people be tempted to go for an environmentally unfriendly alternative due to lower cost or desirability.
Breeze is all electric car. It recharges via solar panals on the car and a small wind turbine on the owners lot. They cannot be charged from household current. The use of solar and wind should keep the car battery bank charged at all times.
The vehicle has a 3 year warranty. After that, parts and service are the responsibility of the owner. Cost could be rather high compared to other cars. The Breeze cannot simply be parked if in need of repair. It can be sold but not retired. Otherwise, it will not serve as a weapon against global warming. The owner is responsible for insuring the car.
The most outstanding feature of the Breeze is the fuel for driving it is FREE!
How to lie with statistics:
A common theme amoung those advocating turbines is stating the total subsidies given to wind and oil/gas. For example, $43 to $46 billion for wind worldwide and $557 billion for oil/gas. Sounds very lopsided and makes oil and gas look like money hogs. Anti-wind proponents point out that, in the USA, if you look at the per/mw subsidy a very different picture appears: 25cents per MW for oil/gas and $24 per MW for wind. *
Which is correct? They both are. The question that is most important is which number more accurately represents the situation. Cutting subsidies to oil/gas would not change the cost of electricity by much. However, the same is not true with wind. Very large increases in cost would occur and it's likely customers would not accept such and increase. So it is best when selling wind to use totals, best when opposing it to use per MW. If you're a customer, you need to do much research before accepting the numbers.
Daryl Huff's "How to Lie with Statistics" is an excellent short book that will help explain how statistics can be used to defend even opposing positions.
*These numbers can vary depending on source and are for illustration purposes only.
Wind turbines benefit farms and ranchers:
There already exist subsidies for ranchers and farmers. Funneling money through a third party that is very expensive makes no sense. Congress also provides subsidies and grants through the 1603 program. So at this point, money is being paid to farmers/ranchers and to wind developers, all on the premise that this helps farmers/ranchers. It would be far more cost efficient to appropriately subsidize ranchers and farmers and eliminate the middle man. If it's important that farmers and ranchers not lose their land, make that happen instead of installing expensive, noisy turbines to "save the ranch". The turbines change the entire nature of farms and ranches making them power plants, not rural areas. It's questionable if wind turbines are actually saving or killing the patient, so to speak. The farm remains, the rural feel does not.
Wind turbines are needed to reduce our dependence on foreign oil:
Understand, this is NOT why we have the wind turbines and solar panals. Nor is it because oil and gas are not renewable. Natural gas may indeed be renewable in coal bed methane. Current tests are proposed by two companies for Wyoming. There are two theories on the origin of oil--one that it came form organic materials and is not being formed at present and an other that says it is formed deep within the earth and that this process continues to this day. What is really meant by "energy independence" and "reducing dependence on foreign oil" is the US must stop using fossil fuels. We must return to windmills, solar panals, bicycles and candles. The statement clearly does not mean reducing dependence because the US has huge reserves of oil and we are not allowed to use them. If the goal were energy independence, that would be the appropriate solution--drill our own oil. When someone talks about energy independence, think massive cuts in electical use, rolling blackouts and brownouts, reduction in the number of automobiles, etc. This is not about keeping the lights on.
Why Not Wind (return to home page)