Large-Scale Wind Farms Could Warm the US

Wind turbines stand over a farmhouse near Northwood Iowa. A new study out of Harvard finds that ram

The researchers modeled a scenario in which wind power were to provide all the present USA electricity demand and covered one-third of the continental US with enough wind turbines to meet that demand.

"If the paper instead looked across the global and long-lasting timescales that matter, renewable resources would fare hundreds of times if not infinitely better than fossil resources", Michael Goggin, vice president of Grid Strategies and a former researcher for a wind energy group, said in a statement. Using a standard weather-forecasting model, the researchers found that this scenario would warm the surface temperature of the continental U.S.by 0.24 degrees Celsius, with the largest changes occurring at night when surface temperatures would increase by up to 1.5 degrees. Today's commercial-scale wind farms carefully space turbines to reduce the impact of these wind shadows, but given the expectation that wind farms will continue to expand as demand for wind-derived electricity increases, interactions, and associated climatic impacts can not be avoided.

The researcher noted that the study shouldn't be viewed as a "fundamental critique of wind power", but as a consideration to begin assessing strategic decisions about decarbonizing electricity generation.

"Wind turbines contribute to climate change". It means that overall, the planet isn't warming up. Where are wind farms, there is an increasing number of precipitation.

Costs and benefits are the criteria used for evaluating new technologies. Miller and Keith determined that solar systems are 10 times more productive than wind within an equivalent area of land, indicating the environmental footprint of widespread wind power might be much greater than previously understood. In the real world, a spinning turbine might not cause almost as much as drag as the simulation suggested, meaning that flowing wind might be able to power the planet and still keep it cool. In 2013 research, Keith described how each wind turbine creates a "wind shadow" behind it where air has been slowed down by the turbine's blades.

In the future it will be possible to regulate climate change if you temporarily disable the selected turbine.

The study also leaves out the impact of extracting fossil fuels from the earth. Then, they tweaked the model to see what would happen if wind power became a key player in helping us cut carbon emissions.

One study aside, wind energy is still worth it.

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