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Wind power, or the lack of it.

(104 Posts)
M0nica Mon 12-Dec-22 07:30:43

All fine and dandy when the wind blows, but in freezing cold weather like now, which is invariably accompanied by still windless conditions, it is currently only capable of providing us with 3% of the power we need .

If we are going to be carbon neutral in the next few decades, we need to reduce our reliance on wind power and develop other more reliable sources of carbon neutral power production; hydro power, tidal and wave power. These sources of power are all running commercially on a small scale in this country, but we should be focussing on these sources of power that come far closer to running 24/7 in all weathers than wind power can possibly do.

Oldnproud Mon 12-Dec-22 08:18:53

My own feeling is that for the sake of energy security, the more sources of energy we have, the better, and what we really need is a need a big leap forward in efficient ways to store 'excess' wind-generated power to make it continuously available I don't know how feasible that is or if that is still a long way off or not.

Cabbie21 Mon 12-Dec-22 08:48:20

It seems to me that a lot more effort should be put into harnessing wave power. We are an island, so that source is never going to run out, if only it could be used to greater effect.

Gingster Mon 12-Dec-22 08:51:46

I’ve never understood why tidal and wave power isn’t considered!

Aveline Mon 12-Dec-22 09:04:10

Time for Volver to chip in. She's very knowledgeable about alternative sources of energy.

volver Mon 12-Dec-22 09:10:41

And, here I am, right on cue. 🤣

I've no idea where the "Wind can only meet 3% of the power we need" claim comes from, that's not what that gridpower page shows. Also, it only shows the current split of supply and says nothing about capability. Unless I'm reading it wrong, then you can correct me M0nica.

The whole "what happens when the wind doesn't blow then" thing is a gift to those who want to jump on the green movement and say we best stick with oil then. I'm not suggesting that anyone here is doing that, quite the opposite.

Tidal and wave power are being considered. Considered quite a lot. Along with geothermal, which is my current favourite.

We need it all. Can we stop complaining about wind? (If you know what I mean 🙂)

Lathyrus Mon 12-Dec-22 09:19:18

The big problem with wave power is it’s effect on other life forms.

Waves that are capable of generating power only occur on or near the surface and off the coast so any equipment will have to be on the surface of the sea.

The number of generators needed to generate significant power would cover several miles of ocean, extending along the coast and out into the sea.

Marine life would be seriously affected by an inability to surface or to reach land. Colonies of seals, for example, would be wiped out in one generation if they could not access their breeding grounds. Fish that come to the surface to feed or spawn likewise.

And, of course, most of the human population would raise protests at not being able to access the sea as they do now.

Added to that wave power is no more constant than wind or sunshine. It is air pressure and motion that creates waves.

Tidal power is more constant (though that varies with the moon) but there are only a few sites that are suitable that are not used for shipping and these also have further environmental consequences for other life forms.

volver Mon 12-Dec-22 09:21:38


It's like blooming groudhog day on here some days.

Lathyrus Mon 12-Dec-22 09:21:41

Geothermal looks promising 🙂

But the only real solution is fewer people.

25Avalon Mon 12-Dec-22 09:24:19

Volver I think it is all ill planned. Rather than people freezing to death we should use fossil fuels, (which let’s be honest we are still importing at great cost rather than using our own), until we have adequate green alternatives. These should have been brought online years ago. So many initiatives not taken up. Even the newest nuclear power station is 11 years behind schedule. Meanwhile are the rich freezing? I doubt it. It’s the poor who suffer again.

volver Mon 12-Dec-22 09:31:40

I don't disagree 25Avalon

Except about the nuclear. Let's just forget the nuclear, can we?

Katie59 Mon 12-Dec-22 09:33:35

We need or decide which is more important human needs or environmental needs, if humans reduced their demands there oils be no need to do environmental damage.

That means using less energy, less travel and less food, the problem is that consumers show no signs of doing anything in that direction. We all think that planting a few trees is going to solve global warming, it’s not!.

The only no fossil fuel reliable energy source is nuclear, France uses a massive amount and enjoy laughing at us and profiting from the UK nuclear stations that they run, we are fools.

volver Mon 12-Dec-22 09:40:42

Nuclear is not the answer. Nuclear produces waste which is deadly for thousands of years. We don't know how to manage that waste. Nuclear accidents make vast tracts of land uninhabitable.

Not nuclear. Ever.

(Unless somebody's managed to make fusion work?)

25Avalon Mon 12-Dec-22 09:46:26

Volver more than happy to forget the nucleur - just wish I could being downwind of Hinckley Point! I’ve never been in favour and agree with your comments.

25Avalon Mon 12-Dec-22 09:47:17

Nuclear not nucleur

Lathyrus Mon 12-Dec-22 09:55:28

“If humans reduced their demands”

If humans reduced their population…….

They don’t show any signs of doing that either


Katie59 Mon 12-Dec-22 09:55:54

Volver you have no idea if Fusion will ever be practical, economic or pollution free. Currently Fission is the “least worse” option if we plan to continue the extravagant lifestyle we enjoy today.

volver Mon 12-Dec-22 10:01:46

Katie59, when it come to energy sources, you really have no idea what I know. 🤣

Katie59 Mon 12-Dec-22 11:56:53


*Katie59*, when it come to energy sources, you really have no idea what I know. 🤣

If you’re lacking about Fusion this century you are the eternal optimist

Katie59 Mon 12-Dec-22 11:57:15



Katie59, when it come to energy sources, you really have no idea what I know. 🤣

If you’re lacking about Fusion this century you are the eternal optimist


Casdon Mon 12-Dec-22 12:36:17




Katie59, when it come to energy sources, you really have no idea what I know. 🤣

If you’re lacking about Fusion this century you are the eternal optimist


You mean it won’t happen in the next 77 years? How can you know that?

Katie59 Mon 12-Dec-22 13:12:18

I’m not an optimist and I’m pretty sure I won’t be around to be told how wrong I was. If controlled Fusion on a practical scale can be achieved it will be a game changer, as with Hydrogen the theory and practical application is a long way apart.

halfpint1 Mon 12-Dec-22 15:05:57

Renovated a house here in franc 15years ago and put in geothermal underfloor heating, worked a treat. Sold the house and the new owners promptly put in gas central heating as well,it wasn't warm enough for them, they were american

volver Mon 12-Dec-22 19:28:08

When I made my post this morning, I made a light hearted comment about fusion, knowing how difficult it will be to bring fusion to commercialisation. Maybe you didn't get the joke Katie59. In any case, it's the only possible nuclear energy we should be considering, because nuclear fission will be a disaster if we go for it, thinking it's the only practical option.

And that's me being optimistic.

volver Mon 12-Dec-22 19:29:54

Oh, meant to say. I drove past several wind farms today, including the offshore one near Trump's golf course.

They were all going like the clappers.