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Wind farms warming up Texas

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hypocritexposer

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Unintended consequences might be more damaging than the non-existent problem these "greenie Weenies" are trying to solve.

New research finds that wind farms actually warm up the surface of the land underneath them during the night, a phenomena that could put a damper on efforts to expand wind energy as a green energy solution.

Researchers used satellite data from 2003 to 2011 to examine surface temperatures across as wide swath of west Texas, which has built four of the world's largest wind farms. The data showed a direct correlation between night-time temperatures increases of 0.72 degrees C (1.3 degrees F) and the placement of the farms.

"Given the present installed capacity and the projected growth in installation of wind farms across the world, I feel that wind farms, if spatially large enough, might have noticeable impacts on local to regional meteorology," Liming Zhou, associate professor at the State University of New York, Albany and author of the paper published April 29 in Nature Climate Change said in an e-mail to Discovery News.

http://news.discovery.com/earth/hot-wind-farms-120429.html
 

Tam

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Crime ‘Bird-Brained’ Hypocrisy: Oil Companies Prosecuted for 28 Dead Waterfowl While Wind Companies Get Away with Offing 400,000+ Every Year
Posted on September 30, 2011 at 3:06pm by Dave Urbanski

You may have gotten wind of the seven North Dakota oil companies recently charged in federal court with the deaths of 28 migratory birds.

The birds allegedly landed in oil waste pits in western North Dakota last spring; the maximum penalty for each charge under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act is six months in prison and a $15,000 fine, the AP said.

But did you know that wind-power companies are responsible for more than 400,000 bird deaths annually, and not one has faced a single charge?

The Wall Street Journal knows it, opining yesterday that the prosecutions are “bird-brained,” especially when wind-power outfits routinely beat the rap:

The companies have pleaded not guilty, though they are not unamazed. They say they’re not responsible for the bird deaths and that, even if they were, the deaths were “incidental” to lawful commercial activity in full compliance with all environmental laws.


Law enforcement officials we talked to in North Dakota say they can’t remember such a case ever going to court. One local commentator calls it “the most absurd legal action taken by the government in the history of North Dakota.” One of the charged oil companies “even went to U.S. Fish and Wildlife and self-reported a number of birds, asking what else they could do soon after they had found the dead birds,” reports the Plains Daily, North Dakota’s statewide newspaper.

U.S. Attorney Timothy Purdon is nonetheless undaunted as he pursues the cause of ornithological justice.

Absurdity aside, this prosecution is all the more remarkable because the wind industry each year kills not 28 birds, or even a few hundred, but some 440,000, according to estimates by the American Bird Conservancy based on Fish and Wildlife Service data. Guess how many legal actions the Obama Administration has brought against wind turbine operators under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act? As far as we can tell, it’s zero.

The American Bird Conservancy—no fan of the oil companies’ actions—also hammers the feds for hypocritical, selective enforcement.


“It is perplexing that similar prosecutions have yet to be brought against the operators of wind farms,” said American Bird Conservancy President George Fenwick. “Every year wind turbines kill hundreds of thousands of birds, including eagles, hawks, and songbirds, but the operators are being allowed to get away with it. It looks like a double standard.”

The Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) estimated in 2009 that about 440,000 birds were being killed by wind turbines, the ABC reports. With an anticipated twelve-fold wind energy build-out by the year 2030, bird mortality is expected to dramatically increase in the coming years, absent significant changes in the way wind farms are sited and operated. Based on studies, one wind farm in California is estimated to have killed more than 2,000 eagles, plus thousands of other birds, yet no prosecution has been initiated for violations of federal laws protecting birds.

Kevin Cramer, North Dakota’s public service commissioner, expressed concern about an apparent presumption of guilt that motivated the U.S. Wildlife Department’s 45-day helicopter search for dead birds in North Dakota’s oil fields, according to the Plains Daily.

“That’s chilling to me in a free society,” Cramer noted on a Bismark, N.D. radio show. “I’m certainly concerned this was a high priority for the government.”

Cramer agreed with the WSJ editorial board’s analysis, saying “when you selectively prosecute this way, it’s the worst injustice and the grossest form of discrimination in a free society that you can ever have.”

Oil Companies get charged and Wind Farms aren't ANYONE SURPRISED? :roll:
Aren't EAGLES on the endangered species list? If so why are the Feds not flipping out over one California Wind Farms killing 2000 of them? :?
 

Tam

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Solar Plan Ignites Some Environmental Concerns

by Jeff Brady

September 28, 2009
An Obama administration plan to build huge new solar energy plants in the Southwest is causing heartburn in the environmental community.

The Interior Department has proposed allowing two dozen solar energy study areas on public land in California, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Colorado. These would be industrial facilities that would require huge amounts of land and water to operate. They wouldn't allow room for other uses on the land such as recreation.

While conservation groups generally support the president's campaign for more renewable forms of energy, some local groups are concerned about putting industrial-scale solar projects on public land.

In the Southwest, the U.S. government is the largest landowner by far — in Nevada, it owns 85 percent of the state. The Southwest also is one of the best regions in the world for producing energy from the sun. So, it might seem like a no-brainer to build more solar in the unpopulated desert. But Terry Weiner of the Desert Protective Council in San Diego opposes it.

"It doesn't make any sense to slap up big industrial projects hundreds of miles from where the energy's going to be used," Weiner says.

She says she understands the climate change arguments for getting more of the country's energy from renewable sources. But she says these projects could displace endangered species, such as the desert tortoise.

The Sierra SunTower facility utilizes 24,000 mirrors to harness solar energy. It covers 20 acres of ground. Some environmentalists have raised concerns about the Obama administration's plan to build new solar facilities because of the land and water requirements.

"You're destroying habitat and creatures to save the planet?" Weiner says.

Around the Southwest, local groups like the Desert Protective Council have similar concerns. But national environmental groups have a slightly different point of view.

"All of our energy has to come from somewhere," says Alex Daue, renewable energy coordinator for the Wilderness Society. "I would rather not see a single additional industrial development on the land. But if we don't develop renewables, we're just going to have more mountaintop coal mining removal or additional drilling in the Rockies."

Daue says his group also is concerned about losing the benefits of recreation and habitat for plants and animals. But he says the effects of climate change have a significant affect on public lands and endangered species, too.

The Wilderness Society has pushed the Interior Department to choose properties that already are degraded in some way by past industrial activity or farming, for example. And they've encouraged the department to select parcels that are close to existing transmission lines so new ones won't have to be built.

Daue echoes arguments made by the solar energy industry that rooftop panels alone aren't enough to supply the country's energy needs.

"The bare-bones fact is that we have a centralized electricity infrastructure in this country," says Rhone Resch, president of the Solar Energy Industries Association. He says that to replace existing coal-powered energy facilities, the country will need industrial-scale solar-powered ones in addition to things like rooftop solar panels.

Resch is frustrated by criticism from within the environmental community, because his industry wants only 670,000 acres of public land for the solar energy study areas.

"When you look at the oil and gas industry today, they have over 44.5 million acres of public land under lease," says Resch. "So you're looking at maybe 2 percent of all the oil and gas lands that are currently leased are being evaluated and considered for solar."

Of course, after the government evaluates the environmental effects of the solar facilities, the number of acres dedicated to them could grow substantially. And that's what really worries local environmental groups concerned about losing special places for recreation and habitat for endangered species.
The NIMBY greenies are fighting among themselves. :wink:
 

cowman52

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You think any of these temperature testers ever thought that this monstrosity of fibre glass, iron, and wiring sits in the sun at 100 plus degrees for x number of days, and that it doesn't cool off near as quick as the white rocks, and cactus that are all around the towers? O he'll no, that would indicate a LITTLE thought.
Renewable has a place, but like we learned a long time ago, to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Just putting up a windmill ain't gonna fix all our ill's.
 

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