Friday, 12 January 2007

Wind Power and Peak Oil

The nuclear lobby has a lot of money and pay people to say that wind farms kill birds and don’t produce enough power. Unfortunately nuclear power isn’t green, the mining and processing of the radioactive material is costly in carbon terms. Bigger reasons for avoiding them are the waste issue and safety fears. No one knows how much it will cost to safely store the waste, and decommission an old nuclear power station.

Another reason given against wind turbines is that they kill birds. They are carefully sited away from bird migration routes. Though with climate change the routes could change. Birds fly into buildings and cars all the time, so its unfair to only blame wind turbines.

In town centres they aren’t so great, under them the light flickers, and buildings nearby cause wind to eddy. Better to have roofs covered in solar panels, coast in turbines.

We are predicted to run out of oil in 25 to 30 years, and atmospheric pollution is growing. Green ideas mean reducing our waste, living more efficiently, and more cheaply. Recognising the true cost of different things, like flying, helps that, so we should do it anyway. Other fossil fuels will last longer, but using coal to fuel aeroplanes and cars wont be easy or cheap.

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