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(Discovery)   Surprising contributor to global warming: wind farms   (news.discovery.com) divider line 308
    More: Interesting, global warming, wind farms, Discovery News, West Texas, zhou, warm air, farming, wind turbines  
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17281 clicks; posted to Main » on 30 Apr 2012 at 12:20 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-04-30 09:16:08 AM  

edmo: The nutjobs who complain about wasteful green energy spending can now attack wind farms as harmful to the planet. The problem is they'll have to admit global warming is more than a theory - it's real. But since they know global warming is a crock, they know this study is more liberal bullshiat. But the wind farms will still be there.


See, here's the thing: they don't give a fark about cognitive dissonance. They'll still attack it because fark Al Gore.
 
2012-04-30 09:16:27 AM  
Is it maybe time to give these a fair shake?

Wind Turbine Balloons:
athousandgreatideas.files.wordpress.com
 
2012-04-30 09:17:10 AM  

edMinton: If all the humans died tomorrow would the earth continue to warm?


Depends on how long the CO2 that we have already contributed to the atmosphere continues to have impact after we are gone ... I don't have numbers for that.

We are coming to the end of the warm period of this Milankovich cycle so the natural forces over the next 10k years or so will slowly start heading towards cooling. But they are weak forces as compared to the warming from the CO2 we've contributed.

I would assume, that if humans disappeared today, eventually what we've done to unbalance the system would return to normal and the Milankovich cycles would become the dominant force again. Leading into an ice age in 10k to 20k years (possibly delayed by our CO2).
 
2012-04-30 09:26:20 AM  
Greens won't be happy until we're all living in the Middle Ages.
 
2012-04-30 09:26:40 AM  
www.climatewatch.noaa.gov

Localized mixing is not "heating". It's localized mixing.
 
2012-04-30 09:26:53 AM  

destrip: ARGH! It's phenomenon in the singular. Who's Discovery hiring for copy editors these days?

The turbines would be good for orange groves, as they install (or used to install) huge fans in California groves to mix colder and warmer layers of air to prevent freezing.


static.guim.co.uk

/ interested in redirecting resources towards orange groves
 
2012-04-30 09:47:23 AM  
All this global warming worrying pisses me off. If we don't kill ourselves off the planet or the universe or the sun eventually will. The only way to ensure the survival of the human race is to find some more baskets to put our eggs in. The real disaster in the making is the underfunding of our space and science programs and education.
 
2012-04-30 09:48:52 AM  

Baron Harkonnen: Apparently, hadcrut3vgl/last1709 is up to 0.5 over the last 100 years.

Oh. My. God.


You do understand that the concern is mainly about what can happen in the absence of emissions stabilization rather than the small but significant amount of warming we've already realized, right?

You do realize that in the absence of emissions stabilization, we can warm the planet by several degrees Celsius in a century or so, right?

You do realize that such a change is of the same magnitude as the change from the depths of a glacial maximum to an interglacial but happening orders of magnitude more rapidly, right?
 
2012-04-30 09:49:58 AM  
Wind farms are a waste of time for exactly one reason: what do you do when there's no wind? Offshore hydro in all of it's forms is far better idea because tides and currents are rather predictable. That irregularity is what will always keep wind energy in a supplement role.

Wind and solar are currently not profitable without government subsidy, meaning without being able to pickpocket the taxpayers the companies involved probably wouldn't even exist.
 
2012-04-30 09:56:24 AM  

Keizer_Ghidorah: Uchiha_Cycliste: Keizer_Ghidorah
So, no matter what type of energy we try to use, we're going to destroy the planet regardless.

we *could* get everyone to ride a bike to work, but no. that would fix too many problems. it's not the profit driven american way.

Have fun riding those 30 to 50 miles over hills.

Seriously, nothing we do seems to help. Hydroelectric? Cutting off water flow to other places, disrupting wildlife. Wind? Mass bird kills, heat buildup. Solar? We'd need a facility that covered the entire Southwestern US to provide any appreciable power. Nuclear? People are terrified of radiation, environmentalists won't let us dispose of the waste. Until we discover the magic of warp drives or cold fusion, we're boned.


You know, it's funny you mention that, As we speak I am in santa Cruz. To get to work will be a 50 mile ride and 30 miles of climbing up Hwy 9.I am ever so much looking forward to it. But first, coffee and cereal!
 
2012-04-30 10:02:14 AM  
Obvious to me... the cult of Global Warming has overplayed their hand. So these Global Warming machines artificially raise temperatures, so the alarmists can bang the drum, then after Al Gore has bought up all the crippled US industry... the Obama will flip the switch and shut these machines down. Occam's razor...
 
2012-04-30 10:04:14 AM  

Jon Snow: Baron Harkonnen: Apparently, hadcrut3vgl/last1709 is up to 0.5 over the last 100 years.

Oh. My. God.

You do understand that the concern is mainly about what can happen in the absence of emissions stabilization rather than the small but significant amount of warming we've already realized, right?

You do realize that in the absence of emissions stabilization, we can warm the planet by several degrees Celsius in a century or so, right?

You do realize that such a change is of the same magnitude as the change from the depths of a glacial maximum to an interglacial but happening orders of magnitude more rapidly, right?


Do YOU realize that the change so far has been less than one degree C since 1850, don't you?

Do YOU realize that the amount of change since 1850 has been just about the same as the margin of error for the proxy data that is used prior to 1850?

You got nothing but a bunch of worthless charts.
 
2012-04-30 10:09:17 AM  

karmaceutical: Obvious to me... the cult of Global Warming has overplayed their hand. So these Global Warming machines artificially raise temperatures, so the alarmists can bang the drum, then after Al Gore has bought up all the crippled US industry... the Obama will flip the switch and shut these machines down. Occam's razor...


Wow ... so much stupid condensed into so little space. Quite an accomplishment.
 
2012-04-30 10:13:58 AM  

nmrsnr: As I said in the redlit thread:

This just in: You can't take large amounts of energy out a system and not affect that system.


I came here to say this.

Why the hell are people surprised that increased energy use affects the environment? The answer is not in where we get our resources. The answer is in how much of various resources we use. And that number is directly tied to population. No getting around it.
 
2012-04-30 10:22:47 AM  

Whar'sMuhWhiskey: Marcintosh: There's too damn many of us.

THIS!


Anyone who agrees with this, and then doesn't just run out and off themselves, are mountainous hypocrites.
 
2012-04-30 10:25:56 AM  

GAT_00: Turbines mix air at night and could affect local climate and farming.

Turbines mix air at night and could affect local climate and farming.

local climate

local climate


But like, all of the local systems are interconnected man. So eventually a net increase in one part of the system means a net increase in the system as a whole or whatever.

If you've studied the Interconnectedness of All Things , like i have, then you'd see the terror of the situation. Unless we set up a system to sell Wind Credits we'll end up cooking the planet in the next 3000yrs.
 
2012-04-30 10:28:35 AM  

waterrockets: I came here to say this.

Why the hell are people surprised that increased energy use affects the environment? The answer is not in where we get our resources. The answer is in how much of various resources we use. And that number is directly tied to population. No getting around it.



The odd thing is that when it comes to the American nation that admires bootstrappy independence, you'd think we're very resource conscious.
 
2012-04-30 10:32:21 AM  
upload.wikimedia.org

Yeah, let's skip the fact there's a big glowing ball in the sky that goes through cycles of heating and cooling. That's just crazy talk.
 
2012-04-30 10:32:23 AM  

sharkbeagle: Greens won't be happy until we're all living in the Middle Ages.


Trolls won't be happy until we all herp a derp.

You Are All Sheep: Whar'sMuhWhiskey: Marcintosh: There's too damn many of us.

THIS!

Anyone who agrees with this, and then doesn't just run out and off themselves, are mountainous hypocrites.


Or doesn't have their own children, but adopts instead. Or, donates to planned parenthood. Or something sensible like that.

Jarhead_h: Wind farms are a waste of time for exactly one reason: what do you do when there's no wind?


Supplement it with other power sources or have some type of battery or other energy storage as a backup. You know what is a waste of time? Pretending that because a form of energy isn't a silver bullet that it's a waste of time.
 
2012-04-30 10:35:54 AM  

indarwinsshadow: [upload.wikimedia.org image 290x277]

Yeah, let's skip the fact there's a big glowing ball in the sky that goes through cycles of heating and cooling. That's just crazy talk.


You are the first person in history to ever make the connection between the Sun and the warmth here on Earth. The first person to discover a basic physical principle gets to name it whatever they wish. May I humbly suggest you name it herpaderpadoo?
 
2012-04-30 10:36:13 AM  

cman: If there is one green technology that I am interested in, it would be GeoThermal power production. True unlimited power* that does not need wind (wind mills), or a sunny day (Solar power), or a stream of water (hydroelectric).

I have always wondered how close we are to such a reality


*not actually true or unlimited
 
2012-04-30 10:38:00 AM  
Good Lord this is retarded. At night, especially in the dry plains, you develop a stable mass of cold air at the ground due to radiation cooling. It sits like a bubble over the ground with warm air above/around it. Any disturbance powerful enough to mix the air will cause the temperature to rise until the stable layer can reassert itself. Hence why nighttime temperatures are highly correlated to wind speed. You'll even sometimes see a temporary rise in temperature with the passage of a cold front due to mixing alone.

It works for everyday winds, and it apparently works for mechanical mixing by wind turbines. This is in no way connected to global warming; it's closer to the urban heat-island effect. But it has to do with warmer temperatures due to human influence so the FARK global warming DERP parade has begun and cannot be stopped.
 
2012-04-30 10:38:55 AM  

GAT_00: Turbines mix air at night and could affect local climate and farming.

Turbines mix air at night and could affect local climate and farming.

local climate

local climate


They put up a fence at the edge of local climate
 
2012-04-30 10:48:01 AM  

You Are All Sheep: Whar'sMuhWhiskey: Marcintosh: There's too damn many of us.

THIS!

Anyone who agrees with this, and then doesn't just run out and off themselves has more than two children, are mountainous hypocrites.


FTFY. If you're already alive may as well make the most of it and actively work towards a better future instead of just giving up.

People who DON'T agree, however...


Egoy3k: If we don't kill ourselves off the planet or the universe or the sun eventually will.


The difference is climate change could fark our sh*t up within this century. The sun isn't due to go out for a few billion years so we have plenty of time to prepare for that.
=Smidge=
 
2012-04-30 10:48:13 AM  

b2theory: cman: If there is one green technology that I am interested in, it would be GeoThermal power production. True unlimited power that does not need wind (wind mills), or a sunny day (Solar power), or a stream of water (hydroelectric).

I have always wondered how close we are to such a reality

It is used where ever it is easy to get to. Unfortunately, that means its mostly Iceland.


I believe there is a plant in California IIRC. Saw something on it on Discovery actually.
 
2012-04-30 10:49:51 AM  

GAT_00: Turbines mix air at night and could affect local climate and farming.

Turbines mix air at night and could affect local climate and farming.

local climate

local climate


And once adjacent locales try to balance that, boom, global climate change.
 
2012-04-30 10:53:12 AM  
Im sure this study was brought to us by our friends at the Society of Petroleum Industry Leaders, better known as "SPIL",
 
2012-04-30 10:58:31 AM  

SevenizGud: Surprising contributor to global warming:

[www.woodfortrees.org image 640x480]

Nothing.


Yeah, and I dare you to publish that same chart with a longer time-line, say a century or two.
 
2012-04-30 11:00:32 AM  
An article that jumps to conclusions based on data in which the margin of error actually excludes the hypothesis entirely? Really?
 
2012-04-30 11:03:09 AM  

LouDobbsAwaaaay: Good Lord this is retarded. At night, especially in the dry plains, you develop a stable mass of cold air at the ground due to radiation cooling. It sits like a bubble over the ground with warm air above/around it. Any disturbance powerful enough to mix the air will cause the temperature to rise until the stable layer can reassert itself. Hence why nighttime temperatures are highly correlated to wind speed. You'll even sometimes see a temporary rise in temperature with the passage of a cold front due to mixing alone.

It works for everyday winds, and it apparently works for mechanical mixing by wind turbines. This is in no way connected to global warming; it's closer to the urban heat-island effect. But it has to do with warmer temperatures due to human influence so the FARK global warming DERP parade has begun and cannot be stopped.


You may be correct, but it just seems like a crappy study. Here would be a good study. Measure the local climate as accurately as possible in a number of areas of similar size, vegetation and location. Check the variation between the measures and set up the 95% confidence interval for the measurement. Build the wind farm then repeat the measurements. Is the local temperature statistically different from before it was a wind farm?

You could do this with any number of constructions. A large parking lot around a football stadium might be easy to check. I would predict the warming would be worse.
 
2012-04-30 11:03:17 AM  
Wind farms take energy from moving air and turn it into mechanical energy. That is a basic energy balance situation that everyone who has ever had a basic physics class.

because I am not an atmospheric scientist, I don't know how much energy a large wind farm removes compared to the amount of energy in the atmosphere.

But whenever, I talk to people about forecasting weather, they always talk about the atmosphere being a chaotic system where small changes in one place can have an increased effect somewhere else.

So my question has always been, can large wind farms have an unexpected effect on weather patterns in their immediate area, or even in an extended area.

I don't think we have the technology or understanding of weather systems to answer the question, but it sounds like maybe people are starting to ask the question

/not anti-wind, just wondered why people always assumed they would have no effect.
 
2012-04-30 11:09:41 AM  

sharkbeagle: Greens won't be happy until we're all living in the Middle Ages.


At the rate we're going we'll get there anyway. Then you geniuses can blame the enviros for not telling you that it was going to be THAT BAD.
 
2012-04-30 11:13:49 AM  
this is a good thing for growing grapes

we like wine, right?
 
2012-04-30 11:22:57 AM  
FTA: "But Zhou and his colleagues found that turbulence behind the wind turbine blades stirs up a layer of cooler air that usually settles on the ground at night, and mixes in warm air that is on top."

This is not "contributing to global warming", subby.


The only way to combat the loudest of ignorant global warming "experts" is by being even louder with the actual, real science.
 
2012-04-30 11:28:14 AM  
Next they are going to tell us that land in the shadow of solar panels stays cooler than the land not in shadow.

Science is always worth while, even the ignoble stuff is science and writes new theories about the natural world, but this was obvious, I wouldn't be surprised if the scientists didn't do the work because it was so obvious.
 
2012-04-30 11:28:30 AM  

indarwinsshadow: [upload.wikimedia.org image 290x277]

Yeah, let's skip the fact there's a big glowing ball in the sky that goes through cycles of heating and cooling. That's just crazy talk.


You keep pointing this out, even after being corrected regarding the actual impact of this simplistic argument. This is because you aren't merely ignorant, but rather a liar.

NASA data regarding insolation:
sohowww.nascom.nasa.gov

You'll note that irradiance has actually trended slightly downwards over the past several decades. There have been studies on the impact of insolation, cosmic ray flux, sunspots, etc. From that publication: "Our results show that the observed rapid rise in global mean temperatures seen after 1985 cannot be ascribed to solar variability, whichever of the mechanisms is invoked and no matter how much the solar variation is amplified."

rspa.royalsocietypublishing.org

Panel (e) is the temperature trend over the last three solar cycles, shown in (d), and sunspot cycles, shown in (a).

It has become obvious that you will continue to repeat the lie that solar factors drive the recently observed climate change, even after being repeatedly confronted by clear evidence to the contrary. The only question is: Why?
 
2012-04-30 11:31:33 AM  
Great, now I need to make a chart that shows number of turbines VS Al Gore's hockey stick chart. I'm betting the correlation will be remarkable. What might that imply....
 
2012-04-30 11:31:40 AM  

cryinoutloud: sharkbeagle: Greens won't be happy until we're all living in the Middle Ages.

At the rate we're going we'll get there anyway. Then you geniuses can blame the enviros for not telling you that it was going to be THAT BAD.


And these chuckleheads don't seem to realize that something has to give. It's going to either be voluntarily, or it will be forced on us. The thing that has prevented mankind from seeing a major drop in population so far is through sheer genius of scientists and doctors, and evil soshulist plots to keep sick people from crossing borders.

Energy will be the same way. We're at a tipping point where we're going to have to change, no matter what. Some of these knuckleheads seem to live by the mantra that we don't have to change because, gosh darn it, we've just made so darn much progress so far, so changing now means defeat, or something. I can't wait until these knuckleheads get their way, they get offshore drilling galore, they get their Keystone pipeline, they get their nuclear waste storage along the aquifer our agriculture is so dependent on...and prices still skyrocket because oil companies still have high demand, and electrical companies still can't expand to meet demand in a profitable way that doesn't require raising rates.
 
2012-04-30 11:37:34 AM  

sufferpuppet: Great, now I need to make a chart that shows number of turbines VS Al Gore's hockey stick chart. I'm betting the correlation will be remarkable. What might that imply....


It would imply that you don't understand how energy budgets work, and think that local mixing will cause global warming.
 
2012-04-30 11:38:04 AM  

CrispFlows: waterrockets: I came here to say this.

Why the hell are people surprised that increased energy use affects the environment? The answer is not in where we get our resources. The answer is in how much of various resources we use. And that number is directly tied to population. No getting around it.


The odd thing is that when it comes to the American nation that admires bootstrappy independence, you'd think we're very resource conscious.


Fairly unconscious, aren't we? Did our ancestors really suffer because they didn't have American Idol?

I think I'd like to have an older house, or one based on old principles. On a decent day, it'd be nice to actually open the windows and let the breeze go through. For that to happen in my house, though, it'd better be a pretty strong damned wind. Meanwhile, 150 years ago, they had these things called breezeways. They helped even if it was humid. There had to be an absence of wind for it to not help.
 
2012-04-30 11:39:45 AM  

s2s2s2: DirtyDeadGhostofEbenezerCooke: 1. Local warming is not global warming

contributing to

CONTRIBUTING TO

CON FARKING TRIBUTING TO YOU FARKING DOLT!


The association of this localized warming and global warming comes soley from subby's pin-head. Zhou carefully delimited the preliminary and partial nature of his observations. The article's author pumps up an inflamtory association with 'killer drought', but even he doesn't use 'global warming'. (Is the drought any worse in the Panhandle, where those windfarms are located, than on the Edwards Plateau?) If you think it is any more 'contributory' than a fart in a windstorm, please feel free to panic.
 
2012-04-30 11:43:05 AM  

Crosshair: DirtyDeadGhostofEbenezerCooke: 3. What is the relative impact on enviroment of a wind farm vs. a conventional power plant, whether hydro, natural gas, nuke or coal, for the same production?

Wind power tends to increase CO2 emissions due to their production/maintenance emissions and the required backup capacity necessary for when the wind doesn't blow.

That backup capacity is typically provided by OCGT peaking units, powered by natural gas. Problem is that those OCGT peaking units are far less efficient than non-peaking units, CCGT, designed to simply run 24/7, thus they have higher emissions.

Link

It will be interesting to see further research and discussion on the topic.


I read that report.
It is full of bad math and 30 year old tech,

You need to go look again it is the equivalent of saying that you need to leave your PC on 247 because the spike for less than 1 second at start up is greater than 24/7 running.

It is total BS.
 
2012-04-30 11:49:06 AM  
Now now, don't forget that 97% of scientists have a consensus on global climate change.


/75 out of 77 who were active publishers in climate change
 
2012-04-30 11:52:58 AM  

Smidge204: The US peaks at some ~800 gigawatts of power consumption during the summer. At a conservative 8 watts/sq.ft. you'd need 100 billion square feet or 3600 square miles - just under 1/30th of Arizona - to meet that demand. Nobody seems willing to put out an estimate for total roof area in the US but I'm willing to bet it far exceeds that. There's no reason it all has to be in one place, after all.


Let's consider only residential roofs, which is obviously only a fraction of the total available roof space.

The 2010 census counts 131,704,730 housing units, 25.9% of which are multi-unit structures. Those get confusing, so let's throw them out too.

So we're down to ~97.6M single-family houses. The average roof size in the US is roughly 1,400 square feet, which gives you 136 billion square feet of roof to play with.

Now, obviously not every roof is presently strong enough to support solar panels, but all newer construction is. Not every roof has ideal geometry, some roofs are shaded by trees, etc.

But the fact that you very nearly hit your nationwide energy goal using only the roofs on single-family homes should tell you something about the fallacious argument that we'd have to carpet the world with solar to make a difference.
 
2012-04-30 12:00:01 PM  

Treize26: Uchiha_Cycliste: Keizer_Ghidorah
So, no matter what type of energy we try to use, we're going to destroy the planet regardless.

we *could* get everyone to ride a bike to work, but no. that would fix too many problems. it's not the profit driven american way.

You're aware that not everyone lives in a city right? And that the economy is shiat and people take jobs where they can get them... and, well, mainly not every person lives in/can afford to live in a goddamned city.

Seriously, I'm all for doing everything we can to improve the environment. I drive the most fuel efficient car that I can afford, I shop local, and my only regular long-distance commute is to work and back. People like you are not helping anything with suggestions that only apply to you or your immediate surroundings.

If you want people to think globally, you may actually have to come halfway and realize that not everyone has the same options on how to go about that as you instead of implying that it's some great evil that we all don't live a reasonable bike ride away from our jobs like you apparently do.


First off, yes as far as anything important is concerned, Americans live in cities. Since the industrial revolution, rural life has been marginalized. This is just progress an the very definition of "civilization". Rural areas should be kept as free from people as possible because they are inefficient for us to civilize.

If you drive 50 miles to work every day, you are taking advantage of absurd paradigms you have only a limited window of time to abuse. Unless you are engaged in a rural lifestyle, you are misusing the land and should move somewhere else. If you can't manage to do that, hey whatevs. But don't get self righteous about it.

It's not my bad that I observed progress and made a life for myself that took advantage of reality and now I expect the same for other modern human beings. I don't expect a ticker tape parade, but I don't give a lot of deference to complaints about driving 50 miles to work. You're burning what should be considered a month's worth of energy every single day. That's your bad.

Own it and move on. The upside is you get to live near a tree and work in a building. The downside is you don't get to participate in Internet discussions about energy conservation without feeling a little guilty.

Seems fair to me.
 
2012-04-30 12:16:06 PM  
And your average 20 acre Walmart parking lot doesn't do the same thing?
 
2012-04-30 12:24:45 PM  
Just run them in reverse at night when electrical use is lower anyway.
 
2012-04-30 12:27:48 PM  
A really cool wind map.

Link
 
2012-04-30 12:52:48 PM  

Delay: You may be correct, but it just seems like a crappy study. Here would be a good study. Measure the local climate as accurately as possible in a number of areas of similar size, vegetation and location. Check the variation between the measures and set up the 95% confidence interval for the measurement. Build the wind farm then repeat the measurements. Is the local temperature statistically different from before it was a wind farm?

You could do this with any number of constructions. A large parking lot around a football stadium might be easy to check. I would predict the warming would be worse.


The study is perfectly fine. I don't think your typical faculty/grad-student at SUNY Albany is going to be able to run experiments setting up multiple on-site wind farms.
 
2012-04-30 12:54:49 PM  

chimp_ninja: and think that local mixing will cause global warming.


Right, I'm sure constant "local" phenomenon that is planet wide and been occurring for years could never actually effect anything. Just like everybody's carbon car exhaust. That's only a local event too so I'm sure that couldn't effect global conditions either.
 
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