Wind energy is an alternative form of energy that comes from wind generated electricity. The power is harnessed by wind turbines, large structures with structural functions of converting the wind’s kinetic energy to electric energy. Because it is an alternative and renewable source of energy, wind power is an effective and clean power source. Though an upcoming and preferred method of generating power for human consumption, it has its own downsides.
Disruption of natural wildlife
In order for wind to be harnessed, wind turbines must be put in place. More often than not, large scale wind turbine farms are placed in wind rich areas in order to secure the largest possible amount of electricity. Turbines are large machines, generally 328 ft tall on average, and some taller models which are more energy efficient are being introduced. On a large scale wind farm, there is many of these tall figures in place in order to generate the largest possible amount of Megawatts.
A disadvantage of wind energy in terms of wildlife and natural habitats, these machines tend to interfere with natural habitats. According to research, there is evidence that animals, especially birds, see wind turbines as a threat. Also, because these structures require to be deeply entrenched in order to stand, they have significant effects on the earth and habitats underneath.
Noise pollution is yet another disadvantage that is associated with wind energy. Because the turbines are significantly large and have moving blades, the movement tends to create noise. Those who live near wind farms have complained about noise pollution as a result of their close proximity to the farm. However, as developments progress, plants are being moved to more remote areas away from residential areas. This limits the number of areas where wind turbines can be set up and at times, places with high potential for wind power are residential and cannot be used to create a wind farm.
Because wind energy relies on a natural and unpredictable occurrence of wind, it is unpredictable. Also because energy is generated only when wind is available, it means that when there is no wind, there is no power. This is one of the biggest issues with natural sources of energy. This then requires wind turbines to be placed only in areas rich in wind energy. Technology is adjusting to the unpredictability and natural fluctuations of wind. Some turbines are implementing technological details that enable the turbine to harness the most wind even in weather that is not windy.
Wind energy is relatively low in generating electricity. The system that is responsible to convert energy into electricity is one that is not quite efficient. The turbines are not able to convert 100% of the captured energy into electricity. Only 59% of the captured energy is only able to be converted into usable energy. For that reason, the efficiency is relatively low. Experts, however, are looking to improve the capabilities of wind turbines by enhancing physical details which will enable these structures to harness and convert a higher percentage of wind power.