25% reliability is terrible standard for “renewable” energy

It is true that we are against blowing up the tops of Maine’s scenic mountains to build industrial wind turbines that do nothing to reduce the state’s dependence on fossil fuels.

It is false that we are against TRUE renewable energy sources. Check out this dairy farm in Exeter, Maine. It takes food waste, combines it with cow manure, and generates electricity. The fuel supply is constant (those cows never stop!), which means the power is dependable and reliable 100% of the time. Unlike the wind turbines in Maine, which extract heavy subsidies from YOU, the ratepayer and taxpayer, but which operate only 25% of the time, when the wind is blowing. Thus when the wind isn't blowing, wind turbines in Maine require burning fossil fuels in conventional power plants as back-up, thus they do nothing to reduce our use of fossil fuels. And we're spending a BILLION DOLLARS on this non-solution.

Wind turbines on Maine’s mountains are a terrible idea, but we think many renewable ideas have great potential.

We’ve been told, for instance, that this country needs to replace tens of thousands of bridges. The EPA made a $15,000 grant available a couple of years ago for students to study the possibility of capturing wind power on highway bridges. The expected results were “an inventory of potential energy by bridge underpass type and location, and design guidelines for new underpass bridges and retrofit of existing underpass bridges to maximize wind generated power. The results on existing underpasses, model testing in a wind tunnel, turbine designs and estimated electrical energy production for several cases will help demonstrate the feasibility of harvesting and converting wind energy in support of bridge underpass infrastructure.”

Loading up the country’s bridges with wind turbines may work, it may not. One thing it has going for it is that it doesn’t try to capture one resource by destroying another, as the turbines on Maine’s mountains do.