Advantages of wind power plants
- The wind is a renewable and practically inexhaustible source of energy.
- Wind power plants do not produce carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO2) and oxides of nitrogen and sulfur, dust pollutants and other hazardous waste.
- The constructed large wind turbine is relatively easy and cheap to service.
- Wind farms are able to reduce dependence on natural fuels, hydro resources and nuclear reactors for electricity production.
- Large wind turbines can be widely located on the terrain. This allows the distribution of electricity sources by regions and helps to create a non-sensitive power supply system (protected from catastrophic failures and terrorist attacks).
- Wind energy can be used as an additional source of energy along with other ways of producing electricity. This diversifies the country’s electricity supply system.
- Large wind turbines can be placed on offshore platforms – on large lakes, in the ocean, as well as on the ground.
- Even the largest wind turbines occupy little space, and in their locations can be carried out other activities – to engage in agriculture or cattle, for example.
Disadvantages of wind power plants
- The wind is an unstable source of energy. Its performance is lower than that of the vast majority of other energy sources. (In regions where the wind is rare and does not have high velocities, it is not advisable to build a wind turbine.).
- A storm, a hurricane or a snowstorm can damage or destroy a large wind turbine.
- Some people do not like the sight of large wind turbines.
- Wind turbines are making noise. However, even at a short distance from the tower, the noise produced by the blades and turbine is seldom more audible than the sound of the wind.
- Large wind turbines sometimes injure and kill birds. This problem can be partly solved by a reasonable choice of the location of the wind power station and by placing the turbines themselves in such a way that they are not close to each other and that their blades do not rotate in the same plane.
- Wind energy can not by itself satisfy the electricity needs of a city, state or state as a whole. It is best to use it as an auxiliary source, in combination with natural fuels, water resources and nuclear reactors.
- Areas with constant winds that are suitable for the construction of a wind farm, as a rule, are located far from populated centers, requiring the construction of extensive transmission lines.
Why is wind power not being used more widely? If you build wind turbines in all appropriate areas of the US, then at least some of them at any time will blow a good wind. If we combine all the turbines in a single network, then we will get a permanent and reliable source of electricity, do not we?
Theoretically yes. At any given time in the US, there are several areas where the wind blows with an optimal speed for wind turbine operation. The problem is to efficiently deliver the generated electricity to the end users. Some of them will inevitably turn out to be too far from working electric generators, so that the transmission of electricity to them is effective. So far, there are no technologies that allow to save electricity generated by wind energy in quantities sufficient for regular electricity supply to cities and settlements.