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The Alternate Side Of Wind Power

1903 words - 8 pages

For thousands of years, wind has turned windmills, flown kites, cooled houses and filled sails, as technological advances are breathing new life into the usage of wind power as a clean, renewable, cost-effective means of generating electricity. Wind energy has become one of the most rapidly expanding industries on the planet. The world added 2,100 megawatts of new wind energy generating capacity in 1998, a new all time record, and 35 percent more than was added in 1997 (Flavin). Wind power is the world's largest growing energy source as most countries are starting to lack adequate indigenous supplies of fossil fuels. The shift from fossil fuels to wind power will help change how each individual will perceive on energy today. Unlike fossil fuel, which is a non-renewable source, wind power is a forever on going resource that will never disappear. The renewable, clean fuel source produces nonpolluting energy as wind turbines don't pollute atmospheric emissions that can cause acid rain or greenhouse gasses unlike power plants that rely on combustions of fossil fuels, such as coal or natural gas. Recent analysis show that wind power is considerably more environmentally friendly than electricity produced by coal-fired power stations as the renewable wind energy have opened the wind power controversy. Many who favor the use of wind energy assert that it helps promote non-polluting air, also with the assertion that wind supply is abundant. However, wind energy poses many drawbacks that can affect each individual.The major disparagement against the use of wind energy is the cost. Most of the United States energy is powered by non-renewable resources. These resources are petroleum, coal, and gas. It is what fuels our vehicles, light our ways, and keep each other warm. However, the use of these resources is very inefficient and leads to many environmental problems but due the cost, many individuals are content and are willing to deal with it. The cost of operating a renewable source such as wind energy would exceed twice as much as what it cost for non-renewable resources. The world has long been searching for a non-polluting, renewable source of energy that is as cheap as coal and oil. The technology to make wind powered turbines requires a higher initial investment compared to fossil-fueled generators. According to Malinda Miller, a content specialist, "the cost can range from $3,000 to $35,000 for a small wind turbine depending on the location, application and service agreement. A large tower and utility scale turbine can exceed $1 million." (par.19). A larger sized wind turbine would offer a better economic scale and can generate electricity at lower costs compared to a smaller model. The cost for equipment isn't the only factor; many people do not want to pay a higher price just to use energy. A person who would pay to use this technology would have an 8% increase on their electric bill. The cost of generating a non-renewable electricity kilowatt per...

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