It's the Environment, Stupid.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Feds halt wind power

The U.S. Department of Defense has effectively halted the construction of wind power across the nation because they've decided to drag their feet.

"The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) announced last week that it would miss a legal deadline in a suit that alleges the department is preventing wind farm construction across the nation. The department had until August 28 to file their response to the Sierra Club's claim that it has created a virtual moratorium on the construction of new wind power plants by failing to complete a study of windmills' impact on radar by Congressionally-mandated..."

Whatever the motivations are (use your imagination, it shouldn't be much of a stretch), this (in)action is preventing the expansion and growth of renewable energy sources, at a time when we should be diversifying our power generating options.

"Federal officials have declined to reveal how many wind projects have been blocked from construction, but, according to media reports, at least 15 wind farm proposals in the Midwest have been shut down so far.

The list of stalled projects includes one outside Bloomington, Illinois, which would have been the nation's largest source of wind energy, generating enough electricity to power 120,000 homes in the Chicago area."

Not only is it a bit contradictory considering the Air Force is the largest purchaser of renewable power (even though it is only 11% of their total usage), it also begs another question: if they don't want wind, what are they really pushing for?

Via Environment News Service


  • Well . . . the Department of Defense has tens of thousands of employees, and it doesn't always speak with one voice.

    The radar issue is a legitimate one--wind turbines do show up on radar screens--but it is site-specific and can usually be dealt with by relocating some turbines or by upgrades to the radar hardware or software. A blanket "freeze" on all new installations is inappropriate.

    Also, the language calls for studying impacts of wind on radar, but not ways to mitigate those impacts. Obviously, that is a wrong-headed approach and potential solutions should be thoroughly studied and publicized as well.

    Thomas O. Gray
    American Wind Energy Association

    By Blogger Tom Gray, at 22:25  

Post a Comment

<< Home