Why Wind Energy?
Wind turbines of all sizes have become a familiar sight around the world for a wide variety of reasons, including their economic, environmental, and social benefits. The potential for wind energy is immense, and experts suggest wind power can supply more than 20% of U.S. and world electricity. Nevertheless, the United States currently produces less than 4% of our electricity from wind. The advantages and disadvantages of wind energy are detailed here to help you decide what the future of wind should be in the United States.
Economic Advantages· Revitalizes Rural Economies: Wind energy can diversify the economies of rural communities, adding to the tax base and providing new types of income. Wind turbines can add a new source of property taxes in rural areas that otherwise have a hard time attracting new industry. Each 100 MW of wind development in southwest Minnesota has generated about $1 million per year in property tax revenue and about $250,000 per year in direct lease payments to landowners.
· Fewer subsidies: All energy systems are subsidized, and wind is no exception. However, wind receives considerably less than other forms of energy. According to Renewable Energy World magazine, conventional energy receives US$300 billion in subsidies per year, while renewable energy has received less than US$20 billion of tax-payers money in the last 30 years.
· Free Fuel: Unlike other forms of electrical generation where fuel is shipped to a processing plant, wind energy generates electricity at the source of fuel. Wind is a native fuel that does not need to be mined or transported, taking two expensive aspects out of long-term energy costs.