In a comment on my post Green Energy Kills Jobs stressdoc had this to say about his experience with wind power.
I am a mechanical engineer and quite knowledgeable about wind power and the reliability problems. They are many!I have always thought that the subsidy for wind power ought to be phased out. I'm more convinced of that than ever. I am still in favor of wind power, where it makes unsubsidized economic sense.
Wind power has a longer history in the EU, but the experience has been similar. Wind power has been subsidized in the EU for longer than it has here in the states. The results have been similar. Power from wind turbines is more expensive that the more traditional sources (coal, gas, hydroelectric, nuclear and oil). The only way that it viable is with government subsidies.
In the EU, turbines cannot be installed without monitoring system to watch their health. This is due to the many failures that have occurred. They cannot operate without insurance and the insurance is unavailable without monitoring. Here in the states, very few turbines are installed with monitoring.
Why? Simple. Turbines here are normally owned by investor groups that exist primarily to market the tax credits. The total cost of the turbine can be recouped in 3-5 years with these credits. The investor groups contract with the turbine manufacturers to install and operate the turbines for the 5 year warrantee period. By the time that the warrantee has expired, the turbines are paid for and any further running time is pure gravy. When they fail, shut them down and there is no loss.
Except, of course, to the tax payers that support this scam.
Cross Posted at Classical Values