"At the recent meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Mark Z. Jacobson, a professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford, spoke in a session on renewable energy.
Jacobson was invited to speak at the conference because he has developed a roadmap to convert the entire U.S. to renewable energy using primarily wind, water, and solar generated energy. His detailed analysis includes looking at costs and benefits on a per-state basis, including the obvious benefits to human health from reduced pollution. One of his slides showed a very unexpected benefit, however: taming of destructive hurricanes with the help of offshore wind farms.
Jakobson's study, co-authored by Cristina L. Archer and Willett Kempton, has been published in Nature Climate Change (full text available here)."
Is it just me or can other people see how stupid this is?
Why isn't it obvious that if you slow the wind down enough to interfere with hurricanes that you will cause other non intended effects?
Then there is reality testing - like how tall is the atmosphere in comparison to the height of windmills? or a few dozen other obvious points that blow this out of the water.
Remember: When the government does most anything - they have a less than even chance of making things worse.
WINDMILLS DO NOT WORK THAT WAY!!!!!111one1!! - Morbo
not replying to you, posting a new comment seems to be broken currently.
I agree. Lunacy.
From the article:"In the case of Katrina, Jacobson's model revealed that an array of 78,000 wind turbines off the coast of New Orleans would have significantly weakened the hurricane well before it made landfall."
That would look like shit in the gulf and what percentage above 78,000 would have to be built to make sure this unproven, untested beyond common sense tactic would work to calm the winds.
You can't see much of the Gulf of Mexico from shore. It's over half a million square miles. I'm sure they could hide a bunch of wind turbines out there and nobody would know. But i agree with you about the storm reduction. I mean, it's possible but it would take a lot. Kind of like how jet contrails affect weather. It takes a lot but the effect is there.
Also, those wind mills could get a hit and be destroyed if the winds that hit them are too strong, leaking oil and what not into the sea.
Add to this that such reduction in wind energy would also cause at least a change in rain patterns (if the wind is not strong enough, clouds may not travel too inland before raining, like in Australia) leading to droughs in some places. Not saying that it couldn't happen because of other causes (climate is dynamic, after all) but doing it on purpose...
How is something like that "obvious"?
Some obvious flaws in your arguments, partly because you didn't RTFA.
The turbines would be placed to help prevent hurricanes building up in the first place. Once one has started it moves relatively slowly, being preceded by high winds that the turbines can again sap. In the event of being hit by a full on hurricane the blades will limit the stress on the turbine to safe levels or just apply the brakes and bring the whole thing to a halt, while still sapping energy.
Height is irrelevant. Removing energy at the bottom will cause the upper parts to be slowed down due to friction against the slower moving air below. In any case we are only really interested in the wind speed at the bottom. You can try a little experiment to see how this works. Get a glass of water, stir it up and then lift your spoon so that only the end is slowing the upper part of the water. The lower part will slow down as well, not as fast but quite significantly. Most importantly the top part will slow down a lot, which is what we want.
TFA isn't suggesting wind turbines are a hurricane shield, just that having very large numbers of them would have a measurable effect. There would be some effect on normal weather, but nothing like as much as other forms of energy create.
I dare say that height is not irrelevant. What effect are wind turbines of a few hundred feet going to have on a storm with a height of 10 miles? (The turbine is about about 3/4 of a percent of the height of the storm) The spoon example doesn't really compare, the spoon is about 30% the height of the "storm", impedes about 50% of the flow at its level, and the flows have pretty much no similarity (Reynolds number.)
Now they propose putting the turbines out in the Atlantic "where the storms form"?... Most hurricanes that hit the United States begin either in the Caribbean or the Atlantic. Many of the worst start as seedlings coming off the coast of Africa.That's a rather large area and at a significant distance.
Finally, "...bring the whole thing to a halt..." Will result in a large force being applied to the structure and the blades. Even if they are feathered (turning them so they will show minimal resistance to the flow).
It's stupid to even presume that his little windmills will be anything more than a few orders of magnitude worth of the energy you get from even a small hurricane. This is like suggesting that if everyone in a country can jump at exactly the same time a massive earthquake can be mitigated into a small tremor. But hey, people believe stupid stuff and doubt facts all the time. Because obviously all those "scientists" are just in one big conspiracy, or they're just too negative.