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Home Forums General Discussion Micro-wind fanatics ruining it for everyone else

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    I do solar, and from time to time, I get someone saying “yeah, but all renewables is rubbish, isn’t it?”. The most recent site I got pointed at was:

    I read that site and hung my head in despair. Now, we all know that small scale wind turbines currently don’t pay for themselves, either in carbon footprint payback or financial terms. Would it be great if there was someone who had found a way of making it work out?! Except, as I was reading through, I couldn’t help thinking “what about this? what about that?”. I was twitching to find the “contact” link, when my questions were answered at the bottom:

    It appears “the economic case” puts aside small things like depreciation, maintenance, replacement of batteries, installation costs, etc etc etc.

    So, let’s have a brief look at a summarized version of the Q&A (I have abridged but not edited or changed any words)

    Q. You haven’t considered the cost of borrowing money to fund the installation.

    I didn’t factor in the cost of borrowing as I wanted to keep the article simple.

    Q. Do the battery banks not need replacing periodically?

    A. This is a complex area whose costs I cannot accurately quantify

    Q. [The article] does not deal with storage issues

    A. Regarding how electricity is stored, I deliberately kept that side of the article simple because I did not want to obscure the main argument.

    Q. Does your calculation include installation costs?

    No, because these are difficult to quantify.

    Q. What would the planned maintenance costs be over 20 years?

    A. Difficult to say

    Q. Are there any maintenance or insurance costs associated with the turbine?

    A. A|l turbines need regular preventative maintenance, […] I have not included these costs.

    Riiiight, so as long as you don’t actually factor in any real-world costs, it works out perfectly!

    For those of us trying to make a living out of viable energy (solar thermal etc), these kinds of sites don’t help at all – they just make the whole industry look bad.

    BTW – grants paid since inception of scheme:

    Not very inspiring.


    This wind generator pays for itself very fast:

    Its all about shopping around and lowering your needs.


    does anyone else notice how velacreations is advertising for velacreations?


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