Celebrating Global Wind Day on June 16th, we clear the air with the latest research on wind energy. Wind farms are becoming a more viable option for renewable energy in Australia as climate change demands less greenhouse gas intensive energy sources. If we make full use of the world’s abundant clean energy resources (wind, solar, hydro, wave, geothermal), we seek the potential to meet Australia's growing energy needs. Also, a clean-energy economy will create new job opportunities and provide other social, economic, and environmental benefits to current and future generations.
What is wind energy?
Large turbines are used to harness the power of wind, generating electricity from its naturally occurring power. Wind turbines capture the energy within the area swept by their blades. The spinning blades drive an electrical generator that produces electricity that is then exported for use.
How much does it cost?
Wind energy is currently the most cost-effective, renewable energy production practice in Australia. It continues to reduce in price and has already dropped by 80% in 25 years. Wind farms are not responsible for rises in electricity bills, as renewable energy organizations that encourage investment in wind and solar power have found they only contribute between 4%-7% to the total cost of power bills.
How effective is wind energy?
Wind farms do not produce wasted heat. Wind stations collect 25% more energy than coal-powered stations. Wind turbines also do not use any water to generate electricity, whereas coal-powered stations can use at least 11 billion liters of fresh drinking water each year.
Is wind energy damaging to our health?
There is no scientific evidence that states that wind energy or wind farms cause health issues. There are also no recorded cases of a person becoming ill due to living near a wind farm. Challengers of wind farms have claimed that “infrasound” (sound that is too low-frequency for humans to hear) can cause negative health effects, yet there have been multiple scientific studies on the noise that have found that it is not an issue.
Why use wind energy?
The Australian government has committed to reducing the amount of greenhouse gas emissions to 5% below 2,000 levels by 2020. Using wind to create electricity does not produce greenhouse gases.
Information was provided by The Clean Energy Council.