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  • Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

    I don't pay a lot of attention to wind energy, but this article claims wind turbines have a very quick payback.

    Researchers studying the environmental life cycle of 2-megawatt wind turbines found they recoup the energy required to manufacture and install them, and begin making a net energy contribution, in a matter of months.

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  • #2
    Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

    This may be true, but lately I have seen more and more turbines not moving, just standing still. Why is that?
    "First we finish the game, then we’ll deal with the Armada!"

    Sir Frances Drake

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    • #3
      Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

      Anheuser Bush has a 320' one by the freeway going to Sacramento, I've never seen it turning until last month, maybe it took that long to build, I recall that when it was first proposed there were lawsuits from environmental groups relative to bird kills, but but they were settled and this always means money was paid.

      Originally posted by North Bay Business
      This clean renewable source provides sufficient energy to power 399 homes, with a carbon offset benefit of 3,003 tons per year.

      The 700,000 square foot Anheuser-Busch plant produces 4.4 million barrels of beer annually, or 136 million gallons. It will utilize 100 percent of the wind energy generated and will not route power back to the grid. However, the turbine’s electrical system operates with a parallel interconnect to the grid enabling the brewery to use both power sources as needed.

      According to Plant General Manager Kevin Finger, “This is the first wind turbine at an Anheuser-Busch In-Bev location and also the first at a brewery in the U.S.”

      The $6 million dollar project utilizes a General Electric SLE 1.5 megawatt turbine — equivalent to $4 per watt of generating capacity. This turbine went into service with no up front investment from the Budweiser plant.

      Anheuser-Busch partnered with Foundation Windpower, LLC, located at 505 Sansome Street in San Francisco, the firm that developed the project, provided equipment, construction financing and long-term maintenance.¹
      The way this works is California's Cap and Trade law, Foundation Windpower sells 3,003 tons of carbon offsets to other industries on the carbon trade market (the price fluctuates like the stock market), by buying these carbon offsets other industries reduce their carbon taxes, the state's rake-off the first year was over a billion dollars profit, Governor Brown wants to put a lot of it into the train, the teachers' union wants it to fund the teachers' pension fund.

      That's one $6 million turbine, at Altamont Pass they have thousands of them, there is a lot of wind there but about half are turning about half the time. They now have to replace all of them within the next few years with newer technology because of bird kills.

      Originally posted by Mercury News
      Altamont Pass -- one of the largest concentrations of wind farms in the country -- is in the middle of a decommission of 4,000 old turbines that use 1970s and '80s technology; nearly all will have to be removed or replaced by 2018. The world's most heavily studied area for wildlife impacts could also be the proving ground for a new type of turbine that county officials and ecologists hope will be less deadly.

      Since 2012, Smallwood and his team have been studying flight behavior and counting dead birds every four days for wind energy company Ogin Inc. The company is seeking Alameda County's approval to install 40 of its "shrouded" turbines in the Sand Hill area to test its theory that the turbine's unique design will help prevent golden eagles, red-tailed hawks and other species from colliding with the blades, hopefully reducing deaths.

      The key is the shroud -- two concentric covers around the blades -- which the company says not only make them more efficient than older turbines, but also less accessible to approaching birds and bats. At less than 200 feet, they're shorter and smaller than most "next-gen" turbines, which can reach almost 500 feet.

      "It's a visual and physical obstacle that, in theory, will prevent birds from flying into the rotor zone," explained John Howe, Ogin's vice president of public and environmental affairs.

      The three-year avian impact study could influence how conventional turbines are phased out from the Altamont and elsewhere. According to Alameda County Assistant Planning Director Sandra Rivera, its objectives fall in line with a 2007 settlement reached with wind energy companies, the Golden Gate Audubon Society and Californians For Renewable Energy (CARE), in which the companies agreed to reduce deaths among four raptor species -- the golden eagle, burrowing owl, American kestrel and red-tailed hawk -- by 50 percent from 2005 figures.²
      Like the Tesla car, without carbon offsets none of this would be economically viable, so other car manufacturers raise their prices and buy carbon offsets from Tesla reducing the price of the Tesla, likewise other industries like oil refineries raise their prices and buy carbon offsets from companies like Foundation Windpower, eventually the consumer pays for all of this and the state makes what is estimated to be several billion a year once the program gets going.

      The only organized opposition to this are various environmental groups and their law firms, they push for whatever they can get and settled with as much as they can line their pockets with.

      Speaking of environmental groups, did you see that Greenpeace lost €3.8 million the other day gambling their ill-gained profits?


      ¹ http://www.northbaybusinessjournal.c...nheuser-busch/

      ² http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_248268...-bird-friendly
      You will ask what goal the U.S. is pursuing? .... their external debt is huge, and ruining other countries is their customary method. Even ownership of the global 'printing press' is no longer helping. Nor is full control over NATO, None of that if enough for the 21st century colonizers. They don't just need to preserve the dollar as the only global currency but also to get their hands on the economic wealth of other large powers and regions. - Sergei Naryshkin

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      • #4
        Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

        Seems to me industrial outfits make good users for intermittent sources like wind and solar. They (might) have batch processes which can be scheduled whenever that energy source is available, thus using the manufacturing process itself for energy "storage".

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        • #5
          Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

          What an obscure benchmark.
          ROI is a subject for other endeavors. For wind, we look at EROEI?
          One would think that it would be "a given", that energy put into an energy producing device would have a short payback payback period for the the energy invested. Come to think of it, ethanol mandates fly in the face of that idea.

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          • #6
            Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

            Whether it's electric cars, solar panels, or windmills none of these make economic sense absent carbon taxes on the rest of us. Allan has a good argument for incorporating them since he has stated that he pays a million dollars a year in taxes, he can claim that he is offsetting the taxes he is paying. These are regressive taxes since they hit the poor and middle classes particularly hard, in not only the added costs of their fuel but all goods consumed as they travel by truck, plane, or train, so we all pay more for everything we consume to benefit the few who adopt them. The energy companies don't "pay taxes" they are merely a conduit as they pass them through to their customers.
            You will ask what goal the U.S. is pursuing? .... their external debt is huge, and ruining other countries is their customary method. Even ownership of the global 'printing press' is no longer helping. Nor is full control over NATO, None of that if enough for the 21st century colonizers. They don't just need to preserve the dollar as the only global currency but also to get their hands on the economic wealth of other large powers and regions. - Sergei Naryshkin

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            • #7
              Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

              I burn tires.
              "First we finish the game, then we’ll deal with the Armada!"

              Sir Frances Drake

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              • #8
                Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

                Originally posted by Ted S. View Post
                I burn tires.
                Doesn't look like you will have to do that anymore Ted, it looks like we are doing everything possible to start a nuclear war, that should reduce the world's population that there will be enough food and energy for everybody without these things.
                You will ask what goal the U.S. is pursuing? .... their external debt is huge, and ruining other countries is their customary method. Even ownership of the global 'printing press' is no longer helping. Nor is full control over NATO, None of that if enough for the 21st century colonizers. They don't just need to preserve the dollar as the only global currency but also to get their hands on the economic wealth of other large powers and regions. - Sergei Naryshkin

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

                  Originally posted by Dick Seibert View Post
                  Doesn't look like you will have to do that anymore Ted, it looks like we are doing everything possible to start a nuclear war, that should reduce the world's population that there will be enough food and energy for everybody without these things.
                  There is so much space and so much capability for food on this planet it can easily feed a 100 billion of us. If you reduce the population, those remaining will still be sinful, so you would not have improved a thing.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

                    Originally posted by Allan Edwards View Post
                    I don't pay a lot of attention to wind energy, but this article claims wind turbines have a very quick payback.




                    http://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/...medium=twitter
                    Allan, are you stupid, or just want to be provocative for some reason? A $3.5m 2mw wind generator paying itself off in 6 mos???? Sounds like some pretty expensive electricity to me. Besides, there must be a continuous perfect 50 mph wind and nothing ever breaks down. Yup, happens all the time. We got to get over this saving the planet crap before we destroy ourselves by trying to think we can actually save it. I know Dick thinks destroying ourselves will be our salvation, but that thinking is just from living too close to San Fran.
                    Last edited by Stovepipe; 06-20-2014, 07:22 AM.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

                      If you have large banks of wind power, you need back up power in order to provide a stable output, since wind energy is very erratic and unpredictable. This backup power must have 100% of the capability of the wind generator production. Does this article calculate this cost in their numbers?

                      We have a wind generator farm near where I live, and it has a natural gas power plant to back it up. This natural gas power plant is producing 75% of the power output, but of course the wind generators are getting all the credit for it. What Allan is pushing here is a classic pig in a poke.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

                        Originally posted by Dick Seibert View Post
                        Whether it's electric cars, solar panels, or windmills none of these make economic sense absent carbon taxes on the rest of us.
                        Dick:

                        At current costs solar makes a lot of economic sense without carbon taxes, not sure I see that connection. Based on average costs of electricity you can get 8%-10% return on the costs of solar panels.

                        Allan has a good argument for incorporating them since he has stated that he pays a million dollars a year in taxes.
                        I do not pay a million $ in taxes. I once mentioned that if I totaled all business taxes, personal income taxes, property taxes, and sales taxes, that I might approach a million$ a year. But keep in mind I pay 8-1/4% sales tax on building material, very high property taxes on lots and spec homes, all in addition to income taxes.
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                        • #13
                          Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

                          Originally posted by Allan
                          Dick:

                          At current costs solar makes a lot of economic sense without carbon taxes, not sure I see that connection. Based on average costs of electricity you can get 8%-10% return on the costs of solar panels.
                          The government subsidizes wind and solar through credits, for instance Musk can sell Teslas at a loss but still make a lot of money by selling the credits to other car manufacturers, that's his business model. As to solar panels our government subsidizes them and that's tax money that the rest of us pay, the price was driven down by competition from China where the government subsidizes them there in addition to making them with their de facto slave labor rates, another generation fought a war over slave labor, and we delight in the cheap prices afforded us by slave labor in other countries, it's particularly egregious when those saving the money self-righteously proclaim they are "saving the planet".

                          I read somewhere that the subsidies for wind were due to expire and congress was refusing to extend them, I don't know how that ended up.

                          If someone saves money with government subsidized energy, others of us pay in higher taxes, classic redistribution of wealth. On the subject of taxes I was chagrined to read Obama's tax returns, I paid a lot more than he did and I'm sure you did as well, of course I'm in California. Also note that he got a tax deduction by donating to the private school that his girls attend, the same school that Carter and Clinton sent their girls to rather than send them to our failed public schools, I certainly can't blame them for that.
                          You will ask what goal the U.S. is pursuing? .... their external debt is huge, and ruining other countries is their customary method. Even ownership of the global 'printing press' is no longer helping. Nor is full control over NATO, None of that if enough for the 21st century colonizers. They don't just need to preserve the dollar as the only global currency but also to get their hands on the economic wealth of other large powers and regions. - Sergei Naryshkin

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                          • #14
                            Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

                            Dick

                            There are tax credits for renewables just like there are depletion allowances and other tax credits and deductions for oil and gas. These credits and deductions permeate our tax code. Politics and tax policy aside, the bottom line is solar panels make economic sense for the user.
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                            • #15
                              Re: Wind Turbines Reach Energy Payback Quickly

                              I've been considering buying a boat to do some fishing off the Cape. Kind of like a business expense as I will take clients out, I figure its a step up from taking them golfing.

                              So what I'm wondering is if I can get a Tax Credit if I buy a sail boat vs a power boat as I will be then using renewables. That way I could redistribute myself some of Dicks hard earned cash towards my boat, I mean heck, do you want your dough going to someone who sits on a couch or to me, a hard working guy?

                              Besides Dick, if you ever get out this way I'd take you on a boat ride. Something you don't get when your are funding pedicures.
                              "First we finish the game, then we’ll deal with the Armada!"

                              Sir Frances Drake

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