The power of wind


Our son, Ben, took 55 of his closest friends to NYC for the Climate March last month and when he was home over Fall break, he spent quite a bit of time updating his mom and dad on the current status of Spaceship Earth.  It was very cool for us to listen to Ben’s passion as he shared the latest new from what scientists are saying about the climate.  So when we drove East through the vast open areas of California, headed for the Yosemite National Park, we ran across a huge garden of wind turbines that stretched for miles across the treeless landscape of this sparsely populated part of the state.  We decided to research a few facts for ourselves on this renewable source of energy and here is what we learned:

•  The United States currently has 61,110 MW of installed wind project capacity, comprising 5.7% of total U.S. installed electric generating capacity.

•  Wind power is currently the fastest-growing source of electricity production in the world.

•  Iowa and South Dakota generated more than 25% of their energy from wind during 2013.

•  In 2013, the roughly 168 million megawatt-hours generated by wind energy avoided 95.6 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) — the equivalent of reducing power-sector CO2 emissions by 4.4% or removing 16.9 million cars from the roads.

•  Modern wind turbines produce 15 times more electricity than the typical turbine did in 1990.

• At times, wind power produces as much as 45% of the electricity in Spain.

•  Wind is a credible source of new electricity generation in the United States. Wind power comprised 43% of all new U.S. electric capacity additions in 2012 and represented $25 billion in new investment. Wind power currently contributes more than 12% of total electricity generation in nine states (with three of these states above 20%), and provides more than 4% of total U.S. electricity supply. Source: 2012 Wind Technologies Market Report

Source:  unless otherwise noted, these come from the Wind Energy Foundation, Washington, DC.

Nothing Like an Afternoon Napa

After spending the night at the Old Crocker Inn, a converted hunting lodge that has become a delightful bed and breakfast, and eating the promised hearty breakfast, we headed into wine country. Sally’s brother Jim and his wife, Jill had visited a vineyard two years ago and recommended Jericho Canyon to us. We were able […]
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Morning worship at St. Gregory of Nyssa

What a fabulous time we are having in San Francisco!  Staying with our friend, Maggi, and gaining a wealth of information about this city and community has been wonderful. Sunday morning, Maggi encouraged us to worship at St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church where Sara Miles is a deacon of the church.  I (Sally) had read […]
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Bicycling Over the Golden Gate

On Saturday, we grabbed the grocery bags and headed to the Farmer’s Market.  A broad selection of fresh vegetables and fruits adorned a large market.  Maggie makes this trek every couple of weeks and folks from all ethnic groups, some of whom work the land that produces what is being sold in the market and […]
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The Grandeur of a Cathedral

Sally and Maggie went for a yoga class while I caught up on the news of the World Series.  The city has been alive with the energy of having the home team in the championship.  When they returned from yoga, we headed out to eat at one of the city’s well-known eateries, The Plow.  After […]
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Range of Light

John Muir once referred to the Sierra Nevada as the “Range of Light.”  Here is a quote from the first chapter of his book, The Yosemite:   And after ten years of wandering and wondering in the heart of it, rejoicing in its glorious floods of light, the white beams of the morning streaming through the […]
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The longest distance between two points

To celebrate 25 years of marriage, Sally and I planned a trip to San Francisco.  Just like our honeymoon 25 years ago, we delayed our celebration until the month of October.  We planned for a mid-day flight out of Tampa and spent the morning in a marathon laundry folding party, packing, taking Max to the […]
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