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View Full Version : The down side of wind turbines



jack grebe
06-24-2008, 08:45 PM
Can anyone foresee problems with them as an energy source?
If my education serves me right, energy is never lost, only
transformed, right? So, if we start taking energy out of the wind,
this has to have some effect elsewhere. maybe if these were used inmass
there would be a counter effect of the earth's rotation slowing or
something.
Same goes with solar energy. If solar panels were to soak up
the suns rays and convert it to electricity, wouldn't that be less
rays to actually heat the earth? Sounds like another evil cycle.....
produce elect. to heat the house-less heat from sun to warm the
outdoors=more need to produce elect. to heat the house.




Thoughts?

LeeG
06-24-2008, 08:54 PM
storage and the huge capital investment for a given kwatt of power, but look at Germany, they have less sun than we do and they're going gang busters with solar. It's not so much that solar will allow us to run hot tubs and drive 6,000lb suburbans but that it ties us to the cost of a renewable source of energy and encourages the efficient use of it. Burning a barrel of oil is soooo much easier given the huge capital investment in it's refinement and engines.

Rigadog
06-24-2008, 09:01 PM
Are you worried too many windmills will stop the earth's rotation? I;m not a scientist but that idea seems w/o merit.

Ian McColgin
06-24-2008, 09:35 PM
Do the kilowatts. No chance we'll be taking enough to even notice. Probably. One wonders about the pollutants making photovoltaics. But it's still nothing to oil and its by-products.

Woxbox
06-24-2008, 09:43 PM
How about this one: They're already experimenting with underwater turbines driven by the Gulf Stream off the coast of Florida. If they install enough of them, they'll slow down the stream to the point that it doesn't reach as far north and cross the Atlantic any more, freezing all of Northern Europe.

OK, unlikely. And turning solar energy into electricity is a non-problem, since all electric power winds up as heat sooner or later. It might be better if this weren't so, given global warming.

Gary E
06-24-2008, 09:56 PM
yeah yeah.. and remember to add up all the energy used to manufacture the solar pannels and windmills and all the other schemes.. and you will find that by the time you total all that you'l fine that the newfangled things dont generate the total of the power used to make the contrraptions... The ONY reason it's ever beneficial to the home owner is the tax breaks they get... A few yrs ago I knew a guy who installed a system in his house that cost over $15,000... THE STATE PAID 10,000 of it.. that's right the others in the state, the suckers, paid...
It's hokus pokus...
DO THE MATH...maybe it'l be a little better these days

Woxbox
06-24-2008, 10:00 PM
Gary -- Yep. Tax incentives from the same geniuses who decided all we have to do for gas is turn all our food into fuel.

LeeG
06-24-2008, 10:39 PM
well,,aint nuthin like necessity being a mother.

Bruce Hooke
06-24-2008, 10:56 PM
As far as solar goes, regarding the original question, it seems to me that almost all the solar radiation that gets turned into electricity via solar panels ends up becoming heat again, so there is just a bit of a delay in the process of the sun adding heat to the earth. It is exactly the fact of conservation of energy and the fact that most energy eventually degrades to heat that makes this so...turn electricity into light and that light ends up becoming heat when it hits various surfaces and warms them, use electricity to run an electric motor and pretty much all the energy that goes in eventually gets transformed into heat, either very directly as the motor heats up or less directly as the mechanical work being done by the motor heats up whatever it is "working on."

SchoonerRat
06-24-2008, 10:58 PM
OK, alternative energy sources are not very efficient. Neither was producing energy from hydro carbons in the beginning. You don't just take oil out of the ground and pour it in your fuel tank.

And atomic power didn't just happen. My impression is that LOADS of R&D was done at GREAT EXPENSE to develop military applications, and peacetime use was an after thought.

I have no idea how long it takes for a refinery to pay for itself and return enough energy to make up for what it took to design and build it, but I suggest that it is probably less now than it was in the beginning of the use of infernal combustion engines.

The gravy train of cheap energy from oil is over! The answer is not to stop research on alternative energy because it now costs more in energy to produce the energy they output. The answer is to double and redouble our efforts to reduce our dependence on oil.

This is not going to be easy when there is little weapons capability associated with alternative energy. There is also NO plus side for the oilmen in power who now have us by the gonads. What possible incentive could there be for the Bush League administration to support anything that would have that kind of detrimental effect on the bottom line of Big Oil if any alternative energy source actually was feasable. For God sakes, they started a war or 2 to help secure the future of Big Oil.

S/V Laura Ellen
06-24-2008, 11:33 PM
... So, if we start taking energy out of the wind,
this has to have some effect elsewhere. maybe if these were used inmass
there would be a counter effect of the earth's rotation slowing or
something...
Thoughts?

The same could be said of sailboats, can a large fleet of sailboats affect the local weather patterns? I'll be contributing to the decline of the earth soon and loving every minute of it.

Ron Williamson
06-25-2008, 05:00 AM
Hey Allan
Have you driven up #21 lately?
There have to be a few hundred new turbines between me and you.
I think if wind farms change the weather,the people downwind of Lake Huron will be among the first to know.
R

joeha
06-25-2008, 05:10 AM
I think the Sun warms the air causing wind. I don't believe we have anything to worry about with the Sun running out of energy. Well not now, in our lifetime.

Joe

sawcutmill
06-25-2008, 05:59 AM
My theory: here on Narragansett Bay, I have seen thousands of times, the days that started out with a zephyr, then the Motorboats came out,all day long, made wakes, and the breeze completely died, for the day, then all there was , was wakes all day long, so motorboats have an effect on the wind too!lol

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 06:01 AM
It's amazing how many answers here echo
those of yrs. gone by..........with oil.

Rigadog
06-25-2008, 06:48 AM
yeah yeah.. and remember to add up all the energy used to manufacture the solar pannels and windmills and all the other schemes.. and you will find that by the time you total all that you'l fine that the newfangled things dont generate the total of the power used to make the contrraptions... The ONY reason it's ever beneficial to the home owner is the tax breaks they get... A few yrs ago I knew a guy who installed a system in his house that cost over $15,000... THE STATE PAID 10,000 of it.. that's right the others in the state, the suckers, paid...
It's hokus pokus...
DO THE MATH...maybe it'l be a little better these days

Is this your belief or can you cite studies to back this up?

It certainly can't take more energy to make a solar hot water panel than the panel captures in solar heat during its useful life.

Now if you want to talk Nuclear power... I do believe that it does take more energy input than is extracted over the life of the plant. Think of all the concrete and steel, all the diesel, then all the energy needed to mine the uranium ( they've done actual studies on this). And then factor in the Gov. subsidies, and tax breaks that are given... All of this is before you factor in the costs we will incur, both monetary and intangible, when one of these plants melts down. I suggest that YOU DO THE MATH.

As for oil, well we are already paying $10 a gal for gas if you factor in the taxes we pay to maintain our military presence in the MId-East and elsewhere. And did you know that the byproducts of refining and burning hydrocarbon-based fuels are poisonous? Would you take a soak in a bathtub of crude?

Alternative, sustainable energy is the only way to go.

peb
06-25-2008, 07:04 AM
yeah yeah.. and remember to add up all the energy used to manufacture the solar pannels and windmills and all the other schemes.. and you will find that by the time you total all that you'l fine that the newfangled things dont generate the total of the power used to make the contrraptions... The ONY reason it's ever beneficial to the home owner is the tax breaks they get... A few yrs ago I knew a guy who installed a system in his house that cost over $15,000... THE STATE PAID 10,000 of it.. that's right the others in the state, the suckers, paid...
It's hokus pokus...
DO THE MATH...maybe it'l be a little better these days

I don't buy this argument. It may be valid for solar, but not for wind. The total cost for installation of wind power in 2007 averaged $1300/kilowatt. This would include the energy costs used in manufacturing the turbines. With electricity being over .10/kwh, that doesn't seem like a bad deal at all. What? average payback time of 13,000 hours of operation?

Rigadog
06-25-2008, 07:17 AM
6/17/08

Washington D.C. The Bush administration is looking into ways for states and municipalities to charge a tax on the wind used by privately owned windmills. Albert Smalls, director of the Department of Revenue Research, says that private ownership of windmills may someday impinge on the ability of utility companies to harness wind power.
"If you have ever been out sailing, or watched the America's Cup, you know that the sailboat that can position itself up wind of a competitor has the advantage. It's known as 'stealing' the wind. Well these private individuals who are putting upon these windmills are doing much the same thing - limiting the ability of future placements of wind harnessing infrastructure to become fully effective. We feel that some sort of tax, or 'wind user fee' is called for to level the playing field, and compensate the public at large".

TMny
06-25-2008, 09:16 AM
>you will find that by the time you total all that you'l fine that the newfangled things dont generate the total of the power used to make the contrraptions...

A state-of-art windfarm in a very good wind-resource regime {windy spot} by 1990 provided electricity at about $.05/kWhr , contrasted with about $.02 for a coal plant.

By 1998 , when petroleum barrels sold for less than $20, commercial scale windplants were commercially feasible ; some of this is due to production tax credits.

The cheapest energy source is eliminating waste.

Nuclear power has benefitted from much R&D , and is enormously productive [particularly useful in replacemrnt of coal] ... only downside (other than proliferation/meltdown threat, and decommissioning fees) is toxic wastestream endures longer than recorded history.

Windmills divert wind (may dry ground beneath) , kill impinging birds , make noise and electric. The big limitation on wind/solar (aside capital cost and site limitations) is intermittent nature, and expense of storage. Storage in conventional battery bank can increase price about $.20/kW.

ljb5
06-25-2008, 09:19 AM
Can anyone foresee problems with them as an energy source?
If my education serves me right, energy is never lost, only
transformed, right? So, if we start taking energy out of the wind,
this has to have some effect elsewhere. maybe if these were used inmass
there would be a counter effect of the earth's rotation slowing or
something.

A windmill blocks the wind in much the same way that a tree blocks the wind.

Since no one ever worried that cutting down (or planting) a tree would cause the earth to stop spinning, I suggest you put these thoughts out of your head.

The same is true for solar power. Everything on this planet absorbs some sunlight and reflects some. When you bought your last car, did you agonize over which color to choose to minimize your impact on the planet? (Silver would be best to minimize global warming) If not, I see no reason why you should worry about this.

If this is really the type of thing you worry about, you should paint the roof of your house white (or better yet, cover it with mirrors).

peb
06-25-2008, 09:29 AM
A state-of-art windfarm in a very good wind-resource regime {windy spot} by 1990 provided electricity at about $.05/kWhr , contrasted with about $.02 for a coal plant.



The latest report I read was total cost (capital expenditures and operational costs) was wind costs 5.5 cents per kwh, coal is 4.5 cents per kwh. Now, the wind cost would be 7.5 cents without the 2 cent subsidy. Without the subsidy, wind would still be profitable, but does become significantly more expensive than coal.

Gary E
06-25-2008, 09:29 AM
I don't buy this argument. It may be valid for solar, but not for wind. The total cost for installation of wind power in 2007 averaged $1300/kilowatt. This would include the energy costs used in manufacturing the turbines. With electricity being over .10/kwh, that doesn't seem like a bad deal at all. What? average payback time of 13,000 hours of operation?


You dont buy it? neither would I ...
Looking around I came across this... lets get an old envelope out of the waste basket and do some math...


The Skystream home windmill starts cranking out electricity in scant 8mph winds. Its 12-foot-long blades allow it to hit maximum output (1.7 kilowatts, 30 to 90 percent of most homes’ needs) at 20 mph and keep its noise on par with an air conditioner. Installation is easy, with all electrical parts contained in the turbine body. And you can sell extra watts to your utility company to fund that solar-panel project. About $10,000; windenergy.com (http://www.windenergy.com/)



Lets start with MY electic bill and because I am only one person, lets double it...I paid $44 last month, and that's typical.. so round it off to $100...

First Question...
Do I have, or will I spend $10,000 to install one?
My answer?... I have the $10 gees but...No, not when I have to pay 100 months of a electric bill to only get 30% to 90% of my electric needs... Even if it was ALL my needs... that's over 8 years of electric bills even if MY use doubles... 16 years if it stays the same as now.

Second question....
What if electric doubles in 5 yrs ?
Then the 8 yrs becomes 4 yrs...
Still not worth it...so... No

Third question...
I was gona ask, but sinceQ1 and 2 was answered I dont see the point of asking it...


And for those of you who dont have the $10 grand....
Are you going to put it on a credit card?
What's the interest your going to get socked with EVERY MONTH for that??

peb
06-25-2008, 09:38 AM
Windmills divert wind (may dry ground beneath) , kill impinging birds , make noise and electric. The big limitation on wind/solar (aside capital cost and site limitations) is intermittent nature, and expense of storage. Storage in conventional battery bank can increase price about $.20/kW.

The storage issue is a red herring. First of all, no one is saying rely exclusively on wind. With a diversified generation capacity, this is simply not needed. Some european countries generate up to 20% of their electricity via wind and don't have gigantic batterry plants spread throughout their grid.

As for drying ground underneath, are you serious. Have you stood underneath a modern wind turbine. The wind is not affected at ground level at all. On top of that, wind at the ground level causes the ground to dry quicker. If it could stop that, it would be a good thing.

The noise is not a big factor at all. If you have a small one on your roof, maybe. If you live more than a 1/4 mile from a wind farm, I doubt if you will hear it at all. I was right underneath a large turbine and it was not loud.

peb
06-25-2008, 09:44 AM
You dont buy it? neither would I ...
Looking around I came across this... lets get an old envelope out of the waste basket and do some math...



Lets start with MY electic bill and because I am only one person, lets double it...I paid $44 last month, and that's typical.. so round it off to $100...

First Question...
Do I have, or will I spend $10,000 to install one?
My answer?... I have the $10 gees but...No, not when I have to pay 100 months of a electric bill to only get 30% to 90% of my electric needs... Even if it was ALL my needs... that's over 8 years of electric bills even if MY use doubles... 16 years if it stays the same as now.

Second question....
What if electric doubles in 5 yrs ?
Then the 8 yrs becomes 4 yrs...
Still not worth it...so... No

Third question...
I was gona ask, but sinceQ1 and 2 was answered I dont see the point of asking it...


And for those of you who dont have the $10 grand....
Are you going to put it on a credit card?
What's the interest your going to get socked with EVERY MONTH for that??


We are comparing apples to oranges. You are talking the cost/benifit of a small scale, personal wind generator, I am talking about the economics of wind power on a large scale. mea culpa.

As with many things, the return on investment becomes quite small on a small personal scale. We certainly don't decide if we should use coal for electrical power based on what it would cost a household to put in a coal boiler, steam turbine, and generator in their backyard.

Gary E
06-25-2008, 09:50 AM
We are comparing apples to oranges. You are talking the cost/benifit of a small scale, personal wind generator, I am talking about the economics of wind power on a large scale. mea culpa.

As with many things, the return on investment becomes quite small on a small personal scale. We certainly don't decide if we should use coal for electrical power based on what it would cost a household to put in a coal boiler, steam turbine, and generator in their backyard.

OhhhKaaaaaaa
In this area the TV advertizes the availability of WIND POWER... and because the arangment the "lectric co" now has with producers and providers and the local delivery... You can 'buy" your lectric from the WIND POWER Co that has those HUGE Wind farms all over the place... have you priced it?? IT COSTS MORE... so much for green...

peb
06-25-2008, 10:00 AM
OhhhKaaaaaaa
In this area the TV advertizes the availability of WIND POWER... and because the arangment the "lectric co" now has with producers and providers and the local delivery... You can 'buy" your lectric from the WIND POWER Co that has those HUGE Wind farms all over the place... have you priced it?? IT COSTS MORE... so much for green...

I am not familiar with this, but I can believe what you say. I know that wind power companies sell most of their power to utilities and the electricity gets intermixed with everything else supplying the grid. I suspect that between them and the utilities, they have figured out that some people will pay a premium for being green and they are simply doing some smart marketing (but perhaps a bit deceptive, where your power comes from would be indeterminate).

Back to the small scale, I started to look into the cost of doing wind/solar on my house to see out it worked out from a financial standpoint. I didn't get very far before I got distracted with more pressing work. I was hoping for about a break even investment if I assume a cost of capital of 5%. I intend to get back to it and I will see how my numbers compare with yours. I suspect it might be a little more favorable, but that is because I have a larger electric bill and live in a windy area.

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 10:07 AM
You dont buy it? neither would I ...
Looking around I came across this... lets get an old envelope out of the waste basket and do some math...



Lets start with MY electic bill and because I am only one person, lets double it...I paid $44 last month, and that's typical.. so round it off to $100...

First Question...
Do I have, or will I spend $10,000 to install one?
My answer?... I have the $10 gees but...No, not when I have to pay 100 months of a electric bill to only get 30% to 90% of my electric needs... Even if it was ALL my needs... that's over 8 years of electric bills even if MY use doubles... 16 years if it stays the same as now.

Second question....
What if electric doubles in 5 yrs ?
Then the 8 yrs becomes 4 yrs...
Still not worth it...so... No

Third question...
I was gona ask, but sinceQ1 and 2 was answered I dont see the point of asking it...


And for those of you who dont have the $10 grand....
Are you going to put it on a credit card?
What's the interest your going to get socked with EVERY MONTH for that??
I think you are being a little narrow in your thinking.
!st off, if it was just electic that doubled in 4 yrs., that may not be such
a problem. HOWEVER, it will not be just the costs of elect dipping into
your pocket. It will be tire(and all rubber products), plastics, not to mention
oil/fuel prices continueing to escalade.
At what point do you look into alternatives? 5 yrs. from now, that $10k
might be a real steal considering the costs to produce the same item
may have bulged to $50k......;.after all, labor is going to have to rise
drasticly to keep pace with workers living costs, we don't want the average
Joe freezing his ass of in the winter up there now do we?

Gary E
06-25-2008, 10:15 AM
I think you are being a little narrow in your thinking.
!st off, if it was just electic that doubled in 4 yrs., that may not be such
a problem. HOWEVER, it will not be just the costs of elect dipping into
your pocket. It will be tire(and all rubber products), plastics, not to mention
oil/fuel prices continueing to escalade.
At what point do you look into alternatives? 5 yrs. from now, that $10k
might be a real steal considering the costs to produce the same item
may have bulged to $50k......;.after all, labor is going to have to rise
drasticly to keep pace with workers living costs, we don't want the average
Joe freezing his ass of in the winter up there now do we?

disagree with about everything you claim

This type of LOW Volume item, will get cheaper as the demand for them increases... more players on the market, and they will be made in China... CHEEEEP Chineee crap.. it's all over the place now... wait till the TransTexas road is complete.. it'l get cheaper....

THe $10 gees used in trading can generate a hellofalot more $$ than any lectric saving whachamacallit gizzzmo..

SchoonerRat
06-25-2008, 10:21 AM
OhhhKaaaaaaa
In this area the TV advertizes the availability of WIND POWER... and because the arangment the "lectric co" now has with producers and providers and the local delivery... You can 'buy" your lectric from the WIND POWER Co that has those HUGE Wind farms all over the place... have you priced it?? IT COSTS MORE... so much for green...
It always costs more for green. It's green to deposit our bodily wastes in conveniences that remove them from our homes. It's green to take our trash and remove it from where we live. It's green to prevent companies from depositing their toxic waste in our water supply. These things all cost money, lots of it.

We could remove all the smog crap from our autos, they'd be more efficient, cheaper to build, and cheaper to run. We could cut down all of our forests, pave over all grasslands, and provide lots of cheap land for development. Why bother putting our drinking water through expensive filtration systems.

SINCE WHEN IS IT A BAD IDEA TO SPEND MONEY TO IMPROVE YOUR LOT IN LIFE, PROTECT YOUR HEALTH AND THAT OF THE PLANET WE LIVE ON?

Excuse me while I go test my new standing rigging. Boy, that 1/8" nylon cord sure was cheaper than 7 x 19 stainless.

CHEAPER = BETTER? Not always in my book!!!!

Gary E
06-25-2008, 10:24 AM
Apples and oranges SR

TimH
06-25-2008, 10:32 AM
On the bright side though, wind turbines reduce earthquakes by lessening continental drift due to winds blowing on mountain ranges.

Will make the world safer for all.

Ian McColgin
06-25-2008, 10:35 AM
When you do your math, try to recall that kilowatts are the momentary power. Residential customers buy kilowatt hours. (Industrial customers also pay a capacity charge based on their peak kilowatt demand.) When you look at a turbine, the killowatt generation at various wind speeds needs to be multiplied by your site's wind over a year to figure the actual return.

On a poor site, a windmill that's managing to produce say 500 watts for 24 hours has produced 12,000 watt hours. 12 KWH. If you can average that for a month you've produced 360 KWH which pretty much covers basic refrigeration and lighting. Most non-heat residential accounts I read when I was regulating utility companies ran about 500 KWH per month. If you have a well, freezer, many TV's, a much used home shop or whatnot, residential non-heat use can easily climb to 1500 KWH. Now add the pool and air conditioning.

If your electric is averaging about $0.15/KWH and your state's residential cogen laws make it that essentially you're selling electricity into the grid at retail, your 350 KWH contribution saved you $52.50. $630 per year.

On a good site, a small unit can reliably produce more on the order of over 700 KWH per month. However if you used only 600 KWH, the 100 KWH surplus - your meter really ran backwards - is not sold at the $0.15 retail cost that you sold your off-set useage for. Rather, you get a check from the electric company for "avoided cost" which is about $0.05/KWH. Give or take. These are remembered numbers adjusted to today's market in my head, not researched today.

For residential use while connected to the grid, you need to see if there's a unit with capacity maybe between half and all your annual use that can work on your site.

Turbines are getting far more reliable and durable so it is now a good bet that you'll have the unit trouble free for at least a decade and have good service should you break a blade or something.

Tower technology is also improving and you don't need an erector set in the back yard.

TimH
06-25-2008, 10:48 AM
its the future...like it or not.

switters
06-25-2008, 10:53 AM
You dont buy it? neither would I ...
Looking around I came across this... lets get an old envelope out of the waste basket and do some math...



Lets start with MY electic bill and because I am only one person, lets double it...I paid $44 last month, and that's typical.. so round it off to $100...

First Question...
Do I have, or will I spend $10,000 to install one?
My answer?... I have the $10 gees but...No, not when I have to pay 100 months of a electric bill to only get 30% to 90% of my electric needs... Even if it was ALL my needs... that's over 8 years of electric bills even if MY use doubles... 16 years if it stays the same as now.

Second question....
What if electric doubles in 5 yrs ?
Then the 8 yrs becomes 4 yrs...
Still not worth it...so... No

Third question...
I was gona ask, but sinceQ1 and 2 was answered I dont see the point of asking it...


And for those of you who dont have the $10 grand....
Are you going to put it on a credit card?
What's the interest your going to get socked with EVERY MONTH for that??


How much was your gas bill and what is the payback if your heat were provided by electricity? Does AE add equity to your home? Is there a reason to have a back up power source based on where you live? (for instance in a rural area where power outages can last for days) These are a few of the questions that need to be taken into account. Your situation may not apply or have any relevance to the questions just asked, but may apply to others. nothing personal, just using your post as an example.

Gary E
06-25-2008, 11:04 AM
How much was your gas bill and what is the payback if your heat were provided by electricity? Does AE add equity to your home? Is there a reason to have a back up power source based on where you live? (for instance in a rural area where power outages can last for days) These are a few of the questions that need to be taken into account. Your situation may not apply or have any relevance to the questions just asked, but may apply to others. nothing personal, just using your post as an example.
My heat is ELECTRIC
Does AE add value?... No
A backup system would be nice, rightnow I use a real big Uninteruptable Power Supply.. almost never needed it

Are you ready to shell out $10 Grand??? NOW or in the near future???
If you answer YES.. why have you not done it already??

TimH
06-25-2008, 11:07 AM
all you sustainable energy haters are going to HTFU.

or go cry to your mommy.

OIL is yesterday...not the future.

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 11:12 AM
Are you ready to shell out $10 Grand??? NOW or in the near future???
I will be taking a real hard look into it soon.
Like I said before, I plan on building a cabin in TX and
would like to be off grid(power is available).
Everything would be designed around that concept and most
likely would be DC also, with inverters supplying AC
needs if any.

Would $10k be out of the question......No.

switters
06-25-2008, 11:26 AM
My heat is ELECTRIC
Does AE add value?... No
A backup system would be nice, rightnow I use a real big Uninteruptable Power Supply.. almost never needed it

Are you ready to shell out $10 Grand??? NOW or in the near future???
If you answer YES.. why have you not done it already??

Currently designing a home using recycled ocean shipping containers with radiant floor heat, the water will be heated by solar. As I said, it may not make sense to you and others based on your power usage and location. I agree that the 10K is pretty steep with a long payback, but the economics are not the only motivator in going to solar. To be honest, its kind of a geek thing for me. Like building my own boat or making my own furniture.

peb
06-25-2008, 11:26 AM
My heat is ELECTRIC
Does AE add value?... No
A backup system would be nice, rightnow I use a real big Uninteruptable Power Supply.. almost never needed it

Are you ready to shell out $10 Grand??? NOW or in the near future???
If you answer YES.. why have you not done it already??

If I can get anything close to a reasonable break even point (like I said before I was only going to assume a 5% cost of capital), get my HOA to agree (probably an uphill battle), get the city to agree, find one that is will not make noise for the neighbors (may have to look at solar) and the neighbors are ok, find a decent looking tower, then I would consider it.

This all will take a lot of time, and I have not done it yet because of time constraints. I suspect that as a few people do it and the hurdles start coming down, more and more will be willing to spend the money.

TimH
06-25-2008, 11:30 AM
now if people lived on family farms that were passed on from generation to generation things would be different. This disposable society dictates that there must be an immediate gratification for everything, in this case immediate cost break even for it to be worth it.

peb
06-25-2008, 11:39 AM
now if people lived on family farms that were passed on from generation to generation things would be different. This disposable society dictates that there must be an immediate gratification for everything, in this case immediate cost break even for it to be worth it.

I disagree. I don't thing many will require an immediate cost break even for it to be done. If it becomes more common, and word gets out it is viable and works, people who can afford it will jump on the bandwagon and accept a slow payback (in years, not decades).

As for family farms, it will be tougher to get farmers to implement it. Farming is a business, and farmers will look at the return on investment much more carefully than you assume. Also, many farm homesites have high electricity demands do to farm buildings and equipment on the same site, they will require a larger system to make it worth it, hence a larger capital outlay.

BTW, my folk's house was built in 1941 by my grandfather (lucky timing on his part) and until the REA came through in 1948, it relied on a windmill running a generator and batteries in the basement for all the house lighting. My grandmother had electric appliance, a DC mixer/egg beater, besides that all electricity was for lights. Every room had electric lights.

TimH
06-25-2008, 11:49 AM
my point was that if people did things in a manner that considered passing it down to their kids.
Now days people dont stay in one place very long it seems.
Why invest in something like that when you may be moving in a few years.

Captain Blight
06-25-2008, 12:10 PM
Apples and oranges SR
No, oranges and tangerines, or apples and pears.

First of all, why the automatic resistance to any- and everything the Left has paradigmatically thought of as a good idea or a platform issue? Are you that narrow-minded to think "LEFT BAD" and stop the thought process there?

Second of all, more specifically, why the Neo-Right resistance to renewable energy? If you were in the pockets of Big Oil, I'd understand it. But we all stand to benefit, so.... I don't get it. So it costs more. Big deal. New technology always does, absent tax breaks its up to the consumers to help out with (read that as pay for) R&D costs. That's capitalism. That's supply-side economics. That's as Murrikkin as it gets.

Gary, why do you hate my freedoms? Why do you hate America? If you hat it so much, why don't you go to Iranistan, they would just love you there

peb
06-25-2008, 12:19 PM
Second of all, more specifically, why the Neo-Right resistance to renewable energy? If you were in the pockets of Big Oil, I'd understand it. But we all stand to benefit, so.... I don't get it. So it costs more. Big deal. New technology always does, absent tax breaks its up to the consumers to help out with (read that as pay for) R&D costs. That's capitalism. That's supply-side economics. That's as Murrikkin as it gets.


As far as I can tell, neither neo-cons nor conservatives have a resistance to renewable energy. I'm sure you can find some statements opposing certain subsidies for renewable energy, but that would be about it. For instance, I am adamantly against subsidies for ethanol in this country, but I favor those for wind. I haven't done the research into solar to know if they are smart or not.

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 12:22 PM
I really don't like the term "renewable energy"

Oil is renewable, it just takes a few million yrs. longer.

Kaa
06-25-2008, 12:22 PM
Second of all, more specifically, why the Neo-Right resistance to renewable energy?

I don't think there's much resistance to renewable energy.

I think there's some resistance to the idea that the government must immediately throw lots of money at renewables while taxing the hell out of fossil fuels.

Kaa

Gary E
06-25-2008, 12:31 PM
No, oranges and tangerines, or apples and pears.

First of all, why the automatic resistance to any- and everything the Left has paradigmatically thought of as a good idea or a platform issue? Are you that narrow-minded to think "LEFT BAD" and stop the thought process there?

Second of all, more specifically, why the Neo-Right resistance to renewable energy? If you were in the pockets of Big Oil, I'd understand it. But we all stand to benefit, so.... I don't get it. So it costs more. Big deal. New technology always does, absent tax breaks its up to the consumers to help out with (read that as pay for) R&D costs. That's capitalism. That's supply-side economics. That's as Murrikkin as it gets.

Gary, why do you hate my freedoms? Why do you hate America? If you hat it so much, why don't you go to Iranistan, they would just love you there

I'm not aginst your freedom... just aginst the imposition that the lefties try to impose on the rest of us because they "supposedly know better" ...screw them..

Now from your original post...

It always costs more for green. It's green to deposit our bodily wastes in conveniences that remove them from our homes. It's green to take our trash and remove it from where we live. It's green to prevent companies from depositing their toxic waste in our water supply. These things all cost money, lots of it.
Dont spend MY money on what YOU think is needed...I'm not aginst the normal trash removal, but if some day the lefties tell us we have to have a compost pile... SCREW THAT....I like RED White and Blue... screw green


We could remove all the smog crap from our autos, they'd be more efficient, cheaper to build, and cheaper to run. We could cut down all of our forests, pave over all grasslands, and provide lots of cheap land for development. Why bother putting our drinking water through expensive filtration systems. Not intirely true.. My 16 yr old car still uses a Chevy V8 developed in 1954... and it gets much better mileage even with the car weighing about double the 55Chevy and with probably double the horsepower...
As for drinking water,,,city water has always been safe, unless you llive in adump...


SINCE WHEN IS IT A BAD IDEA TO SPEND MONEY TO IMPROVE YOUR LOT IN LIFE, PROTECT YOUR HEALTH AND THAT OF THE PLANET WE LIVE ON? Within reason.. no problem... Just dont demand windmills and solar cells... fookin seatbelts are bad enough


Excuse me while I go test my new standing rigging. Boy, that 1/8" nylon cord sure was cheaper than 7 x 19 stainless. What's the tensile test on both of those?? Apples and oranges...


CHEAPER = BETTER? Not always in my book!!!! Didnt say that, but I agree with you on that statement..
I usually over design, built Machine Tools all my life, I would not have made a good airplane designer.

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 01:13 PM
fookin seatbelts are bad enough
.
Yup, only in America is it against the law to drive a car without wearing a seatbelt, but you can drive a motorcycle without a helmet:confused:

SchoonerRat
06-25-2008, 01:40 PM
I'm not aginst your freedom... just aginst the imposition that the lefties try to impose on the rest of us because they "supposedly know better" ...screw them..

Is that any worse than the righties trying to impose on the rest of us because they "supposedly know better? Guess we have to screw them too.


Dont spend MY money on what YOU think is needed...I'm not aginst the normal trash removal, but if some day the lefties tell us we have to have a compost pile... SCREW THAT....I like RED White and Blue... screw greenOK, fair enough. I don't think we need a war. Don't spend MY money on that because you think it's needed. I don't think we need more nukes. Don't spend MY money on them. I don't think we need to support cruel despots who promise to sell us their oil. Don't spend MY money on that.



Within reason.. no problem... Just dont demand windmills and solar cells... fookin seatbelts are bad enough
What's the tensile test on both of those?? Apples and oranges...
Didnt say that, but I agree with you on that statement..
The point that I didn't seem to make very clear is that going to sea with parachute cord shrouds instead of proper rigging to save money is a road to disaster. Continuing our current energy policy because green energy is more expensive is a road to disaster. The only viable argument you seem to present against green is the cost. This cost can, and must be reduced through research, and research costs money.

Bob Smalser
06-25-2008, 01:47 PM
The fun side of wind power are the Grade-A hypocrites like the Kennedy Family who get away with saying, "Not in my back yard."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cape_Wind


Other opponents include some prominent individuals who normally support sustainable energy. Proponents suggest that some of this opposition is motivated by ownership of real-estate on Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard or the mainland and that it raises issues of environmental justice.

Robert Kennedy, Jr., whose family's Kennedy Compound is within sight of the proposed wind farm, wrote an essay stating his support for wind power in general, but opposing this project. It was published in the New York Times op-ed page on December 16, 2005.

This doesn't represent the view of most Massachusetts citizens in certain surveys: 81% of adults supported the project, 61% of Cape Cod residents supported it, and only 14% of adults oppose it.

Gary E
06-25-2008, 01:49 PM
The only viable argument you seem to present against green is the cost. This cost can, and must be reduced through research, and research costs money.
That is why private industry is developing whatever they can.. there's a mighty tastey carrot at the finish line for them... or do you want Govmnt $$ to fund that?

Captain Blight
06-25-2008, 02:05 PM
I don't think there's much resistance to renewable energy.

I think there's some resistance to the idea that the government must immediately throw lots of money at renewables while taxing the hell out of fossil fuels.

KaaWell, since the decision was made to socialise highway infrastructure (mostly by Ford Chevrolet and Dodge lobbying back in the '20s), how else are we to pay for their upkeep than by taxes? Doesn't a tax on the fuel that the vehicles that use the roads, use, make sense?

Captain Blight
06-25-2008, 02:06 PM
That is why private industry is developing whatever they can.. there's a mighty tastey carrot at the finish line for them... or do you want Govmnt $$ to fund that?Why in the world would you assume that? That's not just insulting, it's downright dumb.

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 02:17 PM
Doesn't a tax on the fuel that the vehicles that use the roads, use, make sense?
As long as that is where the tax money really goes.....but that will never happen

TimH
06-25-2008, 02:31 PM
in reality it goes to fund personal wars.

Kaa
06-25-2008, 02:36 PM
Well, since the decision was made to socialise highway infrastructure (mostly by Ford Chevrolet and Dodge lobbying back in the '20s)

Huh? LOL.

I guess the Romans decided to "socialize highway infrastructure" at some point, right? :D

But we were talking about renewable energy and whether it's proper government function to throw tax money at technologies it likes at the moment.

Kaa

Raka025
06-25-2008, 02:41 PM
Yup, only in America is it against the law to drive a car without wearing a seatbelt, but you can drive a motorcycle without a helmet:confused:

Or a seatbelt!

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 02:46 PM
It is not about throwing money at technologies
the gov. likes, It is about paying off election debt.

NOW, BACK TO THE TOPIC:rolleyes:.

100 yrs ago, most everyone would have thought that oil
was a gift from the gods, that it would never run out, and
we couldn't possibly have any side effects from using it.
Even the waste oil was used......to keep the dust down:eek:.


I am hearing the same type of things about alt. energy.....
WE COULD NEVER USE UP THE WIND
WE COULD NEVER EFFECT SOLAR ENERGY ON THE PLANET
Etc., Etc. Etc.

I say bullshirt, for every action, there is an opposite reaction.
"going green" may actually endanger future generations

TimH
06-25-2008, 02:55 PM
at least the buffalo are still there.

SchoonerRat
06-25-2008, 03:13 PM
100 yrs ago, most everyone would have thought that oil
was a gift from the gods, that it would never run out, and
we couldn't possibly have any side effects from using it.
Even the waste oil was used......to keep the dust down:eek:.


I am hearing the same type of things about alt. energy.....
WE COULD NEVER USE UP THE WIND
WE COULD NEVER EFFECT SOLAR ENERGY ON THE PLANET
Etc., Etc. Etc.

I say bullshirt, for every action, there is an opposite reaction.
"going green" may actually endanger future generations
I agree, we don't know. However we do know that the effects of burning fossil fuels are endangering future generations. I don't believe that we should continue sleeping with the devil we know. We need to find a better alternative. It might not be wind or solar or geothermal or wave action or bio diesel. It might be some of the above, it might be a combination of all of the above, or it might be some as yet unconceived technology.

The path we are on now does not have a happy ending. We are in the visegrip of big oil, and it's getting worse. A handful of companies can charge us anything they want for an energy source that is choking us to death, and we have no choice but to smile, bend over, and spread our cheeks.

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 03:18 PM
and we have no choice but to smile, bend over, and spread our cheeks.
If that is what you think......how sad:(

TimH
06-25-2008, 03:22 PM
sad but true.

peb
06-25-2008, 03:23 PM
Huh? LOL.

I guess the Romans decided to "socialize highway infrastructure" at some point, right? :D

But we were talking about renewable energy and whether it's proper government function to throw tax money at technologies it likes at the moment.

Kaa

Off the top of my head:

It is entirely proper for the government to subsidize an industry at times in order for it to take hold and be a success under certain circumstances.

1) The industry is critical to the future of the overall economy
2) It is apparent that the capital outlay is great enough that private investment will not get the job done as soon as desired.
3) The technology mature enough such that the early infrastructure deployed will not be wasted or thrown away.

Now, besides funding research institutions (ie universities) I am not that much in favor of the government subsidizing the technology research itself.

These three criteria could be shown to be a success with the railroad subsidies. I think they apply quite well to wind energy. The do not apply at all to corn based ethanol.

Edited to add:
Let me add a 4th condition:
The technology is advanced enough such that it is apparent the industry will be able to stand on its own within a reasonable period of time.

TimH
06-25-2008, 03:29 PM
anyone know if its possible to dilute Hydrogen? Its more volatile than needed in its pure form. If we ship it pure to the distribution centers and dilute it before we pump it into our cars it wont be quite as dangerous and it will go much further.


remember...its the most plentiful element in the universe...

Captain Blight
06-25-2008, 03:40 PM
Kaa, way to derail without answering the question. I was answering Gary's blather; but hey! Good for you, obfuscation is always the way to win an argument!

it doesn't compare, since Rome built their roads with slave labor. How far back do you want to go? Amoeba reproduce asexually! We should emulate their example!! We won't have to expose our children to amoeba-porn on the amoebaternet!!

Don't be a tool. Of course Government monies should be used to help along development that is for the greater common good. You'd have to have a shrine to Ayn Rand in your basement to not believe that. It shouldn't be fully subsidised--that just leads to greed and inefficiency-- but what is the Small Business Administration there for if not for this exact sort of thing?

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 03:41 PM
sad but true.
I don't see it that way.
I would rather develope other methods of energy, learn to
conserve, and change to alt. way of living before being
sodimized by big oil.

I can and have made my own fuel
I can and will continue this in the future.

Grass roots movements can have a profound effect on
government. Homemade biodiesel and ethanol, will become
accepted by the government when they can no longer control
it.
Those that will be spending the winter in the northern states
and Canada will be looking into anything and everything
that may keep them warm this winter.....next year will be worse.
For many, the decision will be whether to eat, keep warm, or go
to work......they may only be able to afford 1. and some???????

When the # of people making there own fuel increases,
it will have to be accepted, because it cannot be stopped.
Does this have the ring of revolution? Maybe, but I foresee
the collapse of the american economy for awhile now.....
It is coming

SchoonerRat
06-25-2008, 03:59 PM
If that is what you think......how sad:(
If work requires me to be 50 miles from where I now am, I have to buy enough fuel to get me there and back at whatever price the local outlet is charging. If mass transit is available I guess I could do that, but then I'm just reimbursing somebody else who has purchased the fuel.

If I want to go to San Diego to go sailing, I guess I could choose not to go, but that's not really much of a choice.......how sad

The existence of a truly viable source of alternative energy would give me a choice.

Do you really believe that continuing on as we are is the best solution?

----------------------

OK, I give up. You win! I have seen the light. Green energy is not viable. Withdraw all funding for alternative energy research. Oil will last forever. Global warming is a myth, I always knew it, but it was a fun cause to rally behind. I know those WMDs are there, we just haven't found them yet. And all of those Iraqis on the 911 planes. The Shrub had no choice but to bomb the bejeezus out of them. Oil has nothing to do with the war. The complete lack of Saudis aboard the planes proved beyond a doubt that they had nothing to do with it. And all those big oil guys certainly have a right to make a little profit. I know they're not charging me one penny more than they have to. So what if much of the world views me with contempt because of the country I live in. All of those little piss ants don't amount to a hill of beans. Were AMERICANS! We've Got the Power! We can pick a fight with anybody we care to for any reason we want. My President can beat up your President.

........how sad indeed

Sorry for going off topic like that. I'm done now.

Kaa
06-25-2008, 04:05 PM
Kaa, way to derail without answering the question. I was answering Gary's blather; but hey! Good for you, obfuscation is always the way to win an argument!

If you were answering Gary's blather it's strange that you chose to quote my post... :-)


Don't be a tool. Of course Government monies should be used to help along development that is for the greater common good.

<rolls eyes>

Let me ask you:

(1) How do you know what the "greater common good" is?

(2) Are you sure that the government's idea of what's good matches yours?

(3) What makes you think that the greater common good is a deciding factor in how the government distributes money?

(4) How good is the track record of governments in picking the right technologies to subsidize?

(5) What are side-effects of the government being a major source of funding for new technologies?

Kaa

Captain Blight
06-25-2008, 04:12 PM
1) something that benefits the maximum number of people for the lowest minimum impact (economically, environmentally, whatever--case-by-case basis)

2) It ought to, this is a representative democracy. I am the government.

3) See #2.

4)Not as good as it should be but up till 10 years ago, it was impossible for people to keep as close an eye on the government, and for the government to recieve almost real-time feedback on issues. I like to call it Mr Al Gore's Amazing Calculatronic Blathertron (AKA Internet).

5) SOme bad, mostly good. Look at the binary computer. Look at how Usenet grew (good article in this month's Vanity Fair of all places). Look at what we've reaped out of NASA's R&D. Rural electrification. The list goes on.

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 04:31 PM
I am the government.


LMAO......... Yea, Right

Captain Blight
06-25-2008, 05:48 PM
You are too, much as it hurts me to think it.

jack grebe
06-25-2008, 05:54 PM
You are too, much as it hurts me to think it.
In that case, read my lips

no new taxes!

Lets see how long that lasts.:D

Gary E
06-25-2008, 05:54 PM
Can you compete with FPL with you home grown system?

MIAMI, June 25 (Reuters) - FPL Group Inc (FPL.N: Quote (http://www.reuters.com/stocks/quote?symbol=FPL.N), Profile (http://www.reuters.com/stocks/companyProfile?symbol=FPL.N), Research (http://www.reuters.com/stocks/researchReports?symbol=FPL.N), Stock Buzz (http://reuters.socialpicks.com/stock/r/FPL)) unveiled plans on Wednesday to build 110 megawatts of solar-power generating plants in Florida as part of a long-term goal to ramp up its renewable energy portfolio, the company's chief executive said.
The new plants would take FPL more than a third of the way to a goal announced last year to build a total of 300-MW of solar capacity in Florida, and the company is more bullish than ever on the prospects for solar, Chief Executive Lew Hay told Reuters in an interview.

Captain Blight
06-25-2008, 06:01 PM
Don't have to compete with them head-to-head. I just don't have to buy from them.

George Roberts
06-25-2008, 07:40 PM
" (1) How do you know what the "greater common good" is?"

"1) something that benefits the maximum number of people for the lowest minimum impact (economically, environmentally, whatever--case-by-case basis)"

By that standard we all get punished for being different - No additional help for those with any disability. Makes for a pretty rough world.

Captain Blight
06-25-2008, 07:46 PM
There's either some very convoluted logic there or you misunderstood that the topic here was technology.

Rigadog
06-25-2008, 09:55 PM
Gary E is just a grump. You're not going to change his thinking. He is set in his ways.

Even Bush is more forward thinking:

Meanwhile, back at the ranch (http://www.off-grid.net/2007/02/18/meanwhile-back-at-the-ranch/)

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HOMESTEADING (http://www.off-grid.net/section/homesteading/) — by Nick Rosen @ 18 Feb 2007
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http://www.off-grid.net/wordpress/images/ranch.jpg
Yo! I’m Green. Bush walks ranch
George Bush’s policies on just about everything to do with the environment are wrong headed and destructive, but you cannot say the same for his ranch in Crawford Texas. Amazingly, given his oil industry links, Bush’s ranch is off-grid, boasting a range of eco-features including geothermal heating and cooling, that would make Leonardo di Caprio proud. The passive-solar house is positioned to absorb winter sunlight, warming the interior walkways and walls. Does his inside knowledge lead him to suspect that he will need it to survive a downturn very soon? To see full details on the house, click here:
Bush acquired the Prairie Chapel ranch in Crawford, Texas, in 1999, and construction of the house was completed 2001. A White house press release of the time – showing their lack of connection with environmentalist concerns, commended the President for his use of a gas-guzzling Gator to help clear trails through “jungly” vegetation.
The place looks its best near dusk when the light is orange in the west and pale purple in the east and deep blue in the dome of the sky. Karen P. Hughes, counselor to the president, said, Bush has put in place “responsible environmental policies” at his 1,600-acre ranch. “He has installed a very environmentally friendly heating and cooling system, and he has put in place a system to recapture groundwater.”
Rainwater and household wastewater are reused for irrigation. First lady Laura Bush, is restoring native wildflowers and grasses on the property. The only sounds are the chatter of birds and the murmur of the breeze through the leaves of live oak and cedar elm trees. A short distance from the house are clusters of vivid bluebonnets and a sparkling pond, even though watchful Secret Service agents stand guard a few hundred feet from the low-slung limestone building, and telescopes for spotting intruders are set up under trees.
In 2001, White House officials introduced a policy of having the President interviewed in carefully selected backdrops including the ranch, to make pro-environmental statements, as they hoped this would draw attention away from more contentious proposals, but the strategy was dropped as it served only to highlight the hypocrisy of the administration on this issue. For Bush is no eco-nut . Early in his presidency he angered environmentalists by rejecting a treaty to reduce global warming, suspending new limits on arsenic in drinking water and breaking a vow to cut carbon dioxide emissions by power plants. And the energy policy he unveiled on gaining office eased curbs on drilling for oil and gas on public lands.
“By marketplace standards, the house is startlingly small,” says David Heymann, the architect of the 4,000-square-foot home. “Clients of similar ilk are building 16-to-20,000-square-foot houses.”
The narrow porch stretches across the back and ends of the house. At one end, it widens into a covered patio off the living room.
The Bush ranch is the kind of place we’d all like to live. Too bad his environmental policies are moving the rest of the country in exactly the opposite direction.