Monday, February 15, 2010

A New Wind-Turbine Factory v. Real World Experience

Nice to have someone offer 250++ jobs. Troy also got a gift.

By co-incidence, we tripped across this article in the Thinker; here's a graf which jumped out:

European wind developers are fleeing the EU's expiring wind subsidies, shuttering factories, laying off workers, and leaving billions of Euros of sovereign debt and a continent-wide financial crisis in their wake. But their game is not over. Already they are tapping a new vein of lucre from the taxpayers and ratepayers of the United States.

That's not encouraging.

Oh, there's more. The article discusses the abandoned wind-farms in Hawaii and California; they were only moneymakers when tax credits were effective; after that, they became a burden. Maintenance and upkeep dollars stopped and the windfarms are now populated with lifeless, rusted, skeletons.

The current mania will depend on "carbon credits"--if it gets through Congress, which is highly unlikely--or EPA regulatory scheming. But regulations change, as did the price of gas and oil in the 1980's.

The article states that, after 30 years of development, wind-farms only supply 2.3% of California's electricity. That's partly due to the fact that "capacity" numbers are vastly overstated; the wind simply does not blow perfectly 24x7.

Europe (particularly Spain) offered utilities cash-offsets against their losses on wind-power. But now those bonds are due and payable--about $16Bn Euros--and Spain is having trouble paying them off.

250+ jobs is a good thing. But it's possible that those 250+ job-holders won't have retirement benefits.

1 comment:

Dohnal said...

Great article, would love to have some of your articles in the new Conservative Digest.

want some copies?