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Wind Farms and potential

  1. May 25, 2010 #1
    Not 100% certain this is the best place to ask this question, though I've asked questions here before, and there seems to be some smart and helpful people here.

    I was pondering wind farms and thinking about T. Boone Pickens' idea of huge expansive wind farms to generate energy. Apparently the goal is to generate around 4 giga watts of energy with these farms.

    I'm wondering that if on such a grand scale might there be any possibility of inadvertent side effects? Such as the misdirection/interruption of continental currents, and thus adversely effecting weather?

    Perhaps the question is best posed to a meteorologist, not sure.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 25, 2010 #2
    Hmm.. how "grand scale" are we talking?

    From a logical view, I'd say it's not something to be concerned about. If this was the case, wouldn't a large city produce nearly the same effect with so many tall buildings?
     
  4. May 25, 2010 #3
    Well I though I've heard the goal is to have wind farms stretching from the Canadian border down to Texas. So pretty much or more or less cutting a line down the middle of the US.

    I hadn't though of buildings affecting wind patterns, but its a valid point. Though I'd counter the blades of the wind machines are more efficient and effective than say a building.

    Just thinking out loud about it, that's all.
     
  5. May 25, 2010 #4
    So we trade "global warming" for "global stilling"?

    Seriously, a letter in Scientific American recently brought up the same point, in response to an article that evaluated how all our energy budget can be satisfied using solar, wind, etc.
     
  6. May 25, 2010 #5
    I wouldn't suggest we not use wind farms at all, but I've got to wonder how many wind farms and solar panels it would take to replace the energy potential of the oil we will no longer be drilling for off the Pacific Coast.

    Sure, we can be come more efficient and supplement energy needs with renewable sources, but enough to forgo the use of fossil fuels significantly? I have my doubts.
     
  7. May 25, 2010 #6
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
  8. May 25, 2010 #7
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
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