Did you know that the building previously known as the Freedom Tower (standing in proximity to where once the Twin Towers proudly stood) during its design process, once boasted wind turbine ‘sustainable’ energy power until further research pointed to the technology’s ill effects on man and beast alike?
I have said in the ‘Case for Ecosystemizing the Urban Landscape’ that we are still in the nascent steps of learning how to nurture a sustainable planet. Sometimes we make mistakes in which case we must also be big enough to admit it and learn how to backtrack. But it seems that although it is so hard to break into the brick wall of political process, once it does take off (usually for totally selfish promotional reasons) it can never be put to rest.
A case in point is that of wind energy. On the face of it, it is an excellent natural resource not nearly harnessed enough. Images of the sleepy Dutch village, against a backdrop of cows and a couple of donkeys come to mind. Serene, who would be against it?
Enter, the vast expanses of land, rendered arid, with hundreds of wind turbines sending their disturbing vibrations far and wide. Standing between 300 and 400 feet tall, this behemoth has long blades anywhere between 115 and 150 feet that sweep an average area of 1.5 acres, moving at 150 to 200 mph at the tips (taken from the link below). Installed on land and sea they not only interfere with signals of sea and air creatures, they have rendered uninhabitable by fauna and flora alike, vast land areas that once were thriving ecosystems.
Not only that, but there have been a few published studies with conclusive testimonies by medical doctors of the ill effects of vibrations from the pulsating blades to human beings ranging from poor sleep patterns to far more serious conditions. While the industry states that today’s turbines are much better than earlier versions and many parrot away the jargon, there is every proof that the effects are comparable.
This is not to say there may not be constructive ways to harness this free resource out there waiting to be invented. But for the mass installed, high velocity iron blade it is time to go back to the drawing board. And until we find earthy friendly systems that do not compromise the health of the ecosystem, the benefits of harnessing wind energy are just illusionary windmills of the mind.
p.s. For more on this subject, a useful resource is https://www.wind-watch.org/faq-size.php. Additional resources abound. Not convinced? Google it and be mindful to weed out the chaff from the wheat.
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