May 1, 2011
Shadow Shot Sunday is the fabulously popular weekly meme started by Tracy in Brisbane. Here in the USA, we post on Saturdays as it is already Sunday in Australia. If you’d like to see more Shadow Shots and find out how to participate, see the Hey Harriet Blog. In the meantime, Gabba Gabba Hey!
My Shadow Shot Sunday submissions are long range telephoto shots of wind turbine blades, taken at a wind farm in rural Minnesota. I love the small shadow on the left side blade in the first photo. In the second, the third blade is submersed in shadow and almost invisible.
I’ve included a couple of photos below that I took while driving through the Palm Springs area of California a few months ago. What do you think? Do these monstrous wind turbines create an ugly landscape? Would you concede their ugliness in your neighborhood to save fossil fuel expenditure and sunsequent pollution and global climate changes?
|Wind turbines along Interstate Highway 10 in Southern California, USA|
Here in the USA we have plenty of them, but there are more in Europe than America. They produce around 10% of America’s electrical power these days. Some folks say they are ugly and ruin the view of the landscape or the waterfront. But they harness the wind, which is stilll free, or at least blows for free, and they don’t burn coal, oil, natural gas or create nuclear waste to generate electrical power.
|Pardon the glare in the windshield, non professional photographer at work!|
But what about the manufacturing and shipping costs involved? How much does it cost to manufacture the parts needed to make one wind generator of the type in the photos? How much energy is used to make one and ship it across the ocean and Continents? How about just dragging it across the country from a United States manufacturer?
The trucking rig alone, that’s the specialized truck needed to haul one of the large specialized pieces, is over $350,000 US dollars. Seven rigs are needed to haul one complete wind turbine. And how about those complete wind turbine towers with blades made in China, bought by American companies with Chinese financed yuan, and set up to generate and sell power for the masses?
|Electrical power usage might be out of control by some|
Interesting stuff, to be sure. Wave of the future? Maybe so. The industry has grown steadily since the 1990’s. But I wonder how it would be if we all just had our own old fashioned windmill and generated our own power.