Why Wind Power? What are the Pros and Cons of Wind Power?

The Advantages or "Pros" of Wind Power:

  • The wind is free. We are able to cash in on this free source of energy.
  • It is a 100% clean, renewable, and independent source of energy.
  • Wind turbines take up only a small plot of land. This means that the land below can still be used. This is especially the case in agricultural areas and backyards.
  • Single households, agricultural farms or small villages that are not connected to the electricity power grid can use wind turbines to produce their own electricity.
  • Wind Energy can be used directly as mechanical energy, e.g. to pump water or rotate mechanical macninery for mines and or farms.
  • Other advantage of wind energy - when combined with solar energy they can be used to provide reliable and steady supply of electricity.
  • Accessibility - can be used by almost anyone and anywhere where there is consistent average wind of 4 or more meters per second.

The disadvantages or "Cons" of Wind Power:

  • The power of the wind is not constant and it varies from zero to storm force. This means that wind turbines do not produce the same amount of electricity all the time. There will be wind-less periods when they produce no electricity at all! For an off-Grid wind turbine it would mean an additional expense of a battery bank.
  • Some of the wind turbines (mostly smaller propeller turbines) are noisy – this can be a disadvantage.
  • Older, faster rotating propeller turbines can kill or injure birds and bats, and are known to cause problems for Radars
  • Wind turbines have to be placed on land with high average annual wind speed. Consistently high wind conditions (and areas with such wind) are rare!
  • Intitial cost of a wind turbine can be sizable, and it can take many years for the turbine to repay the investment. In low-wind areas turbine may never produce back its cost in electrical power.