Gone With The Windmills?

Industrial wind power has a place, and T. Boone Pickens knows exactly where that is: On the plains, where winds are incessant. Other potentially low impact sites are mid-western crop-fields, eastern strip mines, and off-shore waters, much closer to the coastal cities that need the power.

But in forested rural areas like Appalachia, community-scale rather than industrial-scale would better contribute to your goal of 10% of our electricity from renewable sources by 2012. Solar panels and small wind turbines have enormous potential for on-site, small-scale power generation, with hardly a ripple on the grid.

by Chris Bolgiano

via Gone With The Windmills? A Plea to President Obama to Save the National Forests of Appalachia « Via Negativa.

My takeaway from Chris’s post at Dave’s Via Negativa is that we need to “invest” more in right sizing our approach to our search for answers…Be it in climate change, energy independence, food production and safety, or the economic crisis. We tend to want to “industrialize” every facet of our economy. From past results, it doesn’t work out like we wish…and the unintended and unforeseen consequences are almost always bad.

This issue leaves me torn in a number of different ways…I would rather see wind-power than more mountaintop removal for coal power. But if you are going to remove the mountain top to put up a wind tower, is their really much difference?

Americans seem to embrace the “big” project even in places where the “big ” answer isn’t appropriate. The only question the “big” answer seems to address is how can the few profit the most from the many…

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