Energy from the sun, in the form of wind, plant matter, and heat and light, is renewable. Renewable energy offers a clean, cost effective alternative to fossil fuels and nuclear power. Producing power from these renewable sources can be far less environmentally damaging than conventional energy supplies. Wind power, more than any other renewable energy technology, is a proven, non-polluting renewable resource that is beginning, and will continue, to play an important role in meeting energy needs in the Upper Midwest.
People have harnessed the wind throughout history to convert wind energy into useable energy. Less than 100 years ago, millions of small windmills provided an important source of power for rural homes throughout the United States. These machines powered water pumps and converted wind into electricity. Beginning in the 1930s, rural electrification programs began to extend the electrical grid into the countryside, replacing wind energy with electricity generated from fossil fuels and large hydroelectric projects. The once abundant wind machines that were a common feature of the rural landscape have largely disappeared from sight.
Today, however, new wind machines are beginning to appear on the landscape, as windy rural areas tap a unique opportunity to benefit from wind power. Modern wind turbine technology now makes it possible to generate cost-effective, clean, renewable electricity on a scale ranging from a single wind turbine for an individual landowner up to large, utility-scale "wind farms." Declining costs and improving technology are quickly making electricity generated from wind energy competitive with all types of nonrenewable fuels, like new coal-fired generation.
Advantage and Disadvantages(Questions):
a) Is the energy source renewable?
Wind energy will never run out, ther's always wind somewhere on the earth.
b) Does the energy resource produce much power, enough for a home, village, city from one power plant?
If used in large numbers, wind energy can be used to power whole cities but usually it is only used to power a home or maybe a small village.
c) Is the energy resource available all the time?
No, Wind energy can only happen when there's wind blowing in its direction.
d) Does the energy resource need to be transported to the power plant?
No, the power plant is it's own generator and the wind that spins it comes to the plant.
e)Does the power from the plant have to be transported over long distances?
f)Is the energy resource polluting (in transportation, power production or with waste products)?
Using wind energy is not polluting in any way.
g)Is the energy resource plentiful?(in how many parts of the world?)
This energy resource can be found anywhere in the world, because at some point wind will blow through that area.
h)How expensive is it to produce the power?
Wind energy doesn't cost too much to buy a turbine. Personal homes can afford to buy turbines.
i)Is the technology for the energy resource easy to use?
Yes, anyone can operate and maintain a wind turbine.
j)Can this energy resource provide power for automobiles?
No, there are currently no technologies to use wind energy for cars.
k)How much technology is currently available for this energy resource?
Using wind energy is already very widespread and can be used anywhere in the world. There are many types of turbines you can buy now.
From 1 to 5
a)Renewable or Non Renewable 5
b)Enough power for a city, for a village or for a home? 3
c)Available all the time, part of time or seldom? 3
d)Resources shipped long, or short? 5
e)Plant can be close to users or far away. 5
f)Non-Polluting or Polluting? 5
g)Plentiful or scarce? 4
h)Expensive or cheap? 5
i)Easy to use or hard to use? 5
j)Could power automobiles. 1
k)Currently available and widespread or scarce. 4