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Letter: Wind power hot air?

Published: Friday, April 25 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

A recent article about wind power in Utah was an incomplete report on so-called "renewable" energy.

It gave no comparison of the cost of initial construction/installation per megawatt with other producers. It omitted any comparison of the cost of electricity with other producers (coal, natural gas, hydro, nuclear or solar). It failed to state what and how much subsidy comes from taxpayers. It failed to say that no power is generated when the wind doesn't blow or blows too little or too strongly and to what extent other sources must make up the difference.

On the environmental side, it made no mention of the acreage of land required, bird destruction, the need for a huge road network (an access road to each tower), trench excavation to every tower for cables, the huge size of holes to be excavated for foundation of each tower, the amount of raw materials and metals required for towers, blades, turbines, etc.

The question of maintenance was entirely omitted. How much maintenance is required as compared with other power sources? A fleet of special maintenance vehicles with tall cranes and with trained crews must be necessary as well as a network of remote controls for each tower and turbine with a central monitoring station.

I understand some wind power projects in Europe have proved very costly and as a result are being abandoned. This information was, of course, omitted. Altogether, I found the article woefully deficient because it does not inform your readers of the true costs versus limited benefits of wind power.

Amos Wright

Provo

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