Alternative Energy

Alternative Energy

Alternative energy news, and information about renewable energy technologies.

Feb 01

Is It Possible To Convert To 100% Wind Power?

Posted in Wind Farms | Wind Power | Wind Turbines

Wind Power With all the talk of going green, the question had been thrown out many times if there will ever be a time that we can use nothing but renewable energy to power our world. A small island in Denmark is trying answer that question with a resounding yes as they power up every single day via nothing but wind power. The Danish island is the ideal setting as the wind literally never stops blowing. The North Sea offers the perfect opportunity to capitalize on the winds that come off of the sea and for them to use wind power as their primary source of power. As a matter of fact, the wind power that they are using is their ONLY source of power.

Samso Island has about 4,000 people who reside on the island and they have a direct stake in how well this project works out. You see, the residents are the ones that own shares in most of the windmills that are being used to power the island. That being the case, they don’t mind the noise of the windmills as the blades are whipping around to create electricity.

While the naysayers of the world would argue that this is great on an island, but how would it work in a city, they need only know that this “island” is far larger than Manhattan, NY. It gives hope that one day, regardless of the location or size, that an entire US city can use some sort of renewable energy to get their power. To be able to erase the entire carbon footprint can actually become a reality.

The one thing that holds many of these projects back is the financing of them. They can be quite expensive to get rolling, but because of islands like Samso, improvements will continue to be made and over time, these prices will come down. We just need to keep plugging away and sooner or later the world is going to come around to greener way of thinking.

  • The Trutherizer

    I would think that the most obvious thing to do would be to scale down our need of electricity at the same time as scaling up our capacity to generate renewable energy. A big factor here is the ‘Alternative Material’ concept.

    We should switch to materials which will lower our power usage during the manufacturing process wherever possible. Especially where the new materials could increase the durability/strength/quality of the products in question. Carbon fiber could replace many, many aluminum products out there for example. If a carbon fiber tennis racket is better than an aluminum one then I dare say the same applies to crutches and a host of other common objects – Window frames(prefabricated building modules even)/sailboat masts/furniture/etc..etc.. And I really think it would be cheaper to truly mass produce using carbon fiber than almost any other material out there. I’m really surprised the world has not embraced this substance more than it already has (currently only as some kind of luxury that comes at a premium price!)

    And better energy grids are definitely a must.

  • Vladimir

    The island may be larger than Manhattan, but population density is the key factor. Manhattan has more than 70,000 residents per square mile, while this island’s population density if far smaller. Once we break down the number of wind turbines per person (or 100 persons), and the area these turbines need to occupy, and the local wind conditions, we’d quickly realize, that powering a city solely through wind power is basically a dream that is very very far away.

    The only way to approach this ideal case is to allocate thousands of square miles of offshore locations and plant wind turbines there, which would maybe generate enough electricity to power all the cities in the world.

    No, I think various renewable energy technologies (excluding nuclear, as some like to categorize it) on a very large scale may eventually power the world’s urban population…

  • Mike Hohmann

    The world will need something like four times current electricity supply in 100 years+, and only solar power (of which wind is a derivative) will be able to supply this as the only ubiquitous and abundant safe source.

  • Reva

    Location plays a major role here. What we achieve in Denmark may not be possible elsewhere. The availability of wind at the specified speeds or availability of direct sunlight is necessary of achieving 100% power from renewable sources. For places not as lucky as Denmark would require both conventional and renewable sources with the market share of renewables increasing with time.

  • Madeleine

    Sustainable Energy – without the hot air by Cambridge professor David JC MacKay looks in detail at this question (& many other interesting ones) – the simple answer is no, unless we reduce our energy consumption drastically.

    You can read/download the book for free – here is the wind chapter:

  • Roger Lauricella

    Doubtful that the island in DK is truly 100% wind, you still need the grid to get wind started so that starting power needs to come from somewhere. In addition, the majority of wind power can not regulate nor control voltage and frequency which presents problems for heavy industry and for stable grid control. Technical problems remain that will prevent wind from powering NYC entirely in the future, supplemental to stable base load (and frequency and voltage regulating type power)yes, but not 100% in the true sense.

  • ken upton

    Why does Denmark want to use wind ,when they have rivers and tidal RE . The cheapest and the best way to collect REH .Is multi axis and conveyor with multi foil/kite energy collectors . With a tidal grid system this is non stop and does not need and convention pollutive old fashion back up (Oil .Coal ,Nuclear). These kite/ foil systems are the IP of 4paz charity and copied by M&S with their shell company Atlantis . Same bankers that robbed Tesla .

    If you made many things in carbon fiber and other modern composite technology they would not break and last a life time. Not good >for one of the most toxic clans who use E13 with all it’s cancer, corrosive, contamination and cancer effects, which is good for the other multi nationals. Read the Sugar Blues, William Duffy. That will explain the basics.

    4paz have now developed even better systems ( not published ) of wet REH , anyone who is interested in the development and exploitation in a fair and honest way. Please get in touch.

  • Jim

    I only know what I have seen on Danish TV about Samsø, but as I recall they are trying to be carbon free in electrical energy via wind mills, carbon neutral in home heating via straw burning plants, but remain carbon generating via automobile/truck/tractor engines. The island is good example for the world, but not completely running on alternate energy yet.

  • Madeleine

    @Ken – I would be interested to know more about what you are talking about, do you have some information you could send me? madeleine.anna[at] gmail[dot]com. Thanks

  • Phil

    If you sum all the additional power coming on line from wind power projects in each country it would be interesting to see if they were indeed powering the equivalent of a New York City.

    For Spain which on a windy day solar and wind supplies around 40% of the nations energy so a list if Spanish cities would appear

  • Hiro Chandwani

    Why only wind? There are other sources of RE which are emissions free. For Samsa Island, tidal and waves could be explored for RE. And sun is also available. As far as NY city is concerned, situation there is very different. For any field of Renewable Energy, large acres of open land is required which is the only thing not available in NY city. Only way to get RE electricity in NY city is through grid, the plant being located far off either inland or offshore. However direct use of RE like solar water heating, energy efficient buildings, building top wind turbines etc could be other solution.

  • josihoff

    Vladimir took the words right out of my mouth.

    The article said “they need only know…” Well that’s the kind of misuse of facts to get a desired result, that people need to call out. I am happy for the people of Samso, but there is no comparison to the energy density of Manhattan. And by the way, I am not a naysayer. Just realistic. The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

  • Roger Roster

    A Green energy economy is the way forward. The US needs to rid its dependence on fossil fuels and reduce its traditional energy consumption. As the energy prices continue to rise, wind energy is a smart alternative. Wind energy will have a significant share of the world energy market in the coming years. More and more homeowners have decided to have a wind turbine in the US. Transformer company, Pacific Crest Transformers has been partnering with the wind energy sector since 1985. It specializes in the manufacture of energy-efficient transformers and solutions for the wind energy sector.

  • Andrew Jiang

    Agree @ Vladimir and Josihoff

    The size of the Danish island should probably be used in the argument against the possibility of relying 100% of renewable energy. Manhattan’s population density of 27,490.9/sq km versus Samso Island’s population density of 36.175/sq km means that if we use Samso as the baseline,in order to power Manhattan we would need 86,633 sq kilometers of space, or about the size of the state of Maine (91,646 sq km).

  • Rif

    Film clip about Samsø. There are 11 land based wind turbines and 10 off-shore wind turbines.

    Samsø – Denmark’s renewable energy island

  • Mary

    Wonderful for that windy island. Have you ever been in a Southern US town on a hot, humid, NON-WINDY day in the summer?

  • Squall

    Samso is using a combination of wind and solar technologies for producing electricity and supplying thermal energy for households and subsequently hydrogen produced from excess electricity. In fact the only problem in this case, as far as I can see it, is the demand side management. Most of the predictions and some research projects claim that maximum penetration of the intermittent RES in the grid can be up to 30%. Therefore, the islands grid infrastructure has to be carefully managed in order to withstand 100% penetration. Of course, microgrids can be easily managed due to small peak loads, while the “biggies” cannot withstand such penetration.

  • Edgar

    Now all they need is an electrically driven personal rapid transport system such as JPods, then they can call themselves 100% renewable.

  • Gerrie

    Mary I live in tx were it is extremely hot almost all year round and I receive 100% wind energy thru my electric company, Also I think that most people forget wind is not the only way to make energy I’m originally from new York and I get that maybe wind mills wouldn’t work so great in the city but solar panels would definitely work there. Lastly guys don’t forget to ask your electric companies about renewable energy they usually have plans available for about the same price as your normal electric in my case I pay less than did before and have 100% wind energy if more people did this it would force the energy companies to close down their not so Eco friendly plants.

  • Edward

    One should not completely discount wind power as a viable energy source simply because it might not be the best solution for everyone or every location.

    Wind power may not be the answer for every city or town in the world. Other renewable energy sources could be employed where wind may not be sufficient enough.

    Combining wind and solar power would definitely help preserve or non-renewable energy reserves. If the best we can do right now is lower the use of non-renewable energies to ensure they will be there for future generations, we should.

  • delta farce

    how much wind power is used in the U.S.?

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