WOW – More Mega Watts from Cape Scott Wind Farm on Global Wind Day!

Global Wind Day & Cape Scott Wind farm is Powering UP!

Most of Northern Vancouver Island was in the dark starting at 11 pm Saturday evening, as crews worked to make the final grid inter-connect to the Cape Scott wind farm.  By 7 AM the restored power included 99 more peak watts of clean green electricity, available to the planet. The marine forecast is for 10 to 15 knot winds, so here comes wind powered electrical current from Cape Scott, British Columbia.

Wind turbines near Cape Scott on Northern Vancouver Island

Some may recall my first post in this wind series, Tilting at Windmills; a Turnabout Indeed, which looked in depth at the Cape Scott wind farm. Stage 2 of this project could begin by August, adding another 25 turbines that produce 44 Mega watts of electricity under peak wind conditions.

 

factsheets_2013

This chart shows European Union employment facts as reported by the European Wind Energy Association. Similar benefits from wind power occur globally. Here is a synopsis on wind power in the U.S.A. as quoted from the Global Wind Energy Council 2012 annual market update:

“The US wind energy industry had its best year ever in 2012, installing 13,124 MW and surging past the 60-gigawatt milestone for total installed wind power capacity. The record year for new wind power resulted in 28% annual market growth . . . 

 Sailing against the winds of a down economy, lower demand for new power, and continued policy uncertainty, the industry invested roughly USD 25 billion (EUR 19.2bn) in the US in 2012, with much of the investment going toward rural parts of the country. The vast majority of wind projects, over 98%, are installed on private land in the US, with wind project owners leasing land directly from the landowner. The local property tax payments and land lease payments to farmers and ranchers bring significant annual revenue to local communities across the country.”

Wind farm and ranchers barns near Pnicher Creek, Alberta

 

This chart shows what 8 Mega watts of wind power can do. The example is for homes in Europe, which use substantially less energy than Canadian or American homes.

Wind turbine energy output

 

GWD_general

 

I love the photo below, because I’m so keen on wind power. You’ve figured that out by now, I’m  sure.

How we perceive things is always subjective, and how things are presented affects how they are perceived. As the saying goes . . . beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What a person sees is not always the reality.  I’ll use the photo to illustrate.

Tall wind turbine behind a country house in Minnesota.

Here are two scenarios: 1) You live in this house with co-operative ownership of the turbine, that pays a $1000 dividend per month – likely you’re quite content with the beauty of wind power.

Conversely, 2) You don’t own the turbine, and its noise is disturbing. You own the house, and when it get really windy, the windows rattle. You’re not so keen about wind power – you’re downright angry!

OK – here is an interesting detail about the photograph. In reality the house is quite distant from the wind turbine, even though it appears to be nearby in the image! My use of a telephoto lens (and the way I tell the story) shapes your perception of things. There is no doubt a zoom lens makes things look closer. A subtle distortion also occurs – distant objects (like the turbine) appear disproportionately larger than foreground objects (like the house). In other words, objects aren’t enlarged equally. Our perception is not only changed, it is also distorted.

 

Wind farm in spanish fork, utah alongside higway

 

In all honesty, no technology is completely benign. This includes wind. And oil and gas, as well. During this series I have tried to present the facts in an objective and factual manner, although purposely I have added a subjective flair. Most of your feedback has been positive, and in my opinion this bodes well for wind power  –  sort of like mother, God, and apple pie.

 

Toronto 'windshare' turbine

So here is a green light to wind power, on the streets of Toronto anyways.

 

Wind powered kite

Don’t forget that wind power can be fun and innovative, too! Imagine, airborne wind turbines?

 

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I will conclude through your voices and with some of the comments you made during this series on wind power:

 

Glenn Dukes at civilrightskiosk.com said “At first, they (the wind turbines) were, I hate to say it, a bit of a “blot on the landscape”. . . Would I prefer looking at the pristine, green ridge through haze of a climate-induced brush fire or fossil fuel smog? On the whole, wind power is a necessary part of a patchwork of solutions that can take us to a more sane and sustainable world.”

 

Cyclocross cd1972 said that “In Germany we have some problems with birds and bats getting killed by the wind turbines. I think scientists will find a solution for that problem soon.”

 

Kaitlin Kelly at broadsideblog said “The ongoing challenge is the power and economic might of the oil/gas lobby, which — here in the U.S. where I live — is enormous.

 

Jeanne over at JM Light said “I am happy to read about your wind farm, understand the concerns about the birds, and agree a solution can be found – I encourage you to keep posting.”

 

A favourite comment was from my friend Louise in Scotland, who said “I enjoy all your pictures and posts, Bruce, but this one really blew me away. Everywhere David and I go in the world, we see wind turbines. You highlight their beauty.”

 

Small air 403 wind turbine and  solar home in the snow

 

 

Our cabin at nightime, lit up with independent power and the stars.

 

Although the lights were out on the North Island last night, we declare energy independence!

 

This concludes Watts of Wind  –  enough WOW for NOW . . . Smile

The full WOW Wind series can be accessed via my category cloud.

 

Cheers to all, and thanks for reading – Bruce

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14 thoughts on “WOW – More Mega Watts from Cape Scott Wind Farm on Global Wind Day!

  1. Bruce, thank you for stopping and liking a post today. I look forward to following your blog and its eclectic messaging. I am going to hop over to Francis’ blog right now and follow that one as well.

    Take care,

    Ivon

    • Thank you Ivon. I had noticed your icon on a few posts I had liked, and then just googled your name + wordpress – and voila, I found your blog.

      The tribute poem titled “I am a Teacher” (over on your blog “Teacher as Transformer”), is very touching. I am also fascinated by your current doctoral work in systems thinking and complexity theory. Awesome. In this field, I bet (and I’m not a betting man) there is interesting thoughts and developments around social media!

      I appreciate you so freely showing genuine interest in Francis’ and my blogs. I look forward to hearing about your journey as well.

      Best regards – Bruce

      • Thank you for the comment Bruce. My tentative dissertation topic is about the use of digital technologies in schools. I am very early in the process, but your point about complexity and systems thinking fits into the scope. I used Peter Senge’s work to write my Candidacy Paper.

      • The tentative is sometimes the hardest part, right? I googled Peter Senge and found his “5th discipline – the ability to see the organisation as a whole, and I loved his quote that “you can only understand the system of a rainstorm by contemplating the whole . . . business and other human endeavours are also systems.” It is fascinating, this complexity theory and systems thinking. On the flip side (i.e. the lack of systems thinking), it reminds me of the space shuttle tragedies, and the anlysis of how things went so wrong.

        I hope your time in Spokane is going well.

    • There are so many innovative ways to save and create energy – sure we’ll need to use some fossil fuel, but we waste so much of it and yet the sun shines and the wind blows, and yet we never go to war for that. My life is dedicated to show people from my personal experience, that there are ways we, all of humanity, can have a better quality of life by using less energy more wisely. Amen.

      • Quite calm here. Spent the day making my own wind hustling to pack and clean for my relocation to less crowds and more open space. Plan to be resettled at the end of the week. Then I’ll really enjoy doing nothing but fly a kite!

      • Hope that your week of ‘resettlement’ has gone well. I’m in the big city for a few days, though most of the time my wife and I will be the 2 grandkids – their youthfullness will rejuvenate. Peace to you in your new home and space.

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