Advantages of Wind Energy
- “Wind prices are extremely competitive right now, offering lower costs than other possible resources”.
- It offers many environmental advantages compared to its major rival coal generation.
- source: http://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy05osti/37602.pdf.
Environmental Problems with Coal
- Burning coal causes roughly $60 billion a year in health cost, mostly because of thousands of premature deaths from air pollution according to the National Academy of Sciences.
- Damages average $.032 /KWhr
In one year, a typical coal plant generates
- 10,000 tons of sulfur dioxide (SO2), which causes acid rain
- 10,200 tons of nitrogen oxide (NOx). NOx leads to formation of ozone (smog).
- 720 tons of carbon monoxide (CO)
- 220 tons of hydrocarbons, volatile organic compounds (VOC), which form ozone.
Further Info on Environmental Effects of Coal
- Further information on the environmental effects of using coal to generate electricity can be found at http://www.ucsusa.org/clean_energy/coalvswind/c01.html and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmental_effects_of_coal
In one year, a typical coal plant generates (continued)
- 170 pounds of mercury, will lead to neurological damage.
- 225 pounds of arsenic
- 114 pounds of lead, 4 pounds of cadmium, and trace amounts of uranium.
- 3,700,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) –as much carbon dioxide as cutting down 161 million trees. Carbon dioxide is a global warming gas.
Future of Wind Energy
- Wind suffers from being most available when electricity is least in demand (winter & nights).
- Smart grid applications may make wind more desirable such as charging an electric car during the evening hours
Future of Wind Energy (Continued)
- DOE (Department of Energy) has determined that it is feasible that 20% of the nation’s electrical energy could be generated by wind by the year 2030. See 20% Wind Energy by 2030: Increasing Wind Energy’s Contribution to U.S. Electricity Supply at http://www1.eere.energy.gov/windandhydro/pdfs/41869.pdf.
This power point discusses the advantages of wind over other energy sources.