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Wind Energy Comes of Age is the most thorough assessment ever published of the technology, economics, and politics of generating electricity with wind. It provides an up-to-date status report on the modern wind industry worldwide.
Written by Paul Gipe, one of America's leading wind energy experts, this book chronicles wind energy's remarkable progress from its rebirth during the 1970s through a troubled adolescence in California's mountain passes in the 1980s to its maturation on the plains of northern Europe in the 1990s. Gipe argues in a readable and engaging style that wind is no longer an alternative source of energy. He cites improvements in the performance, reliability, and cost effectiveness of modern wind turbines to support his contention that wind energy has come of age as a commercial technology.
Unlike other books on the subject, which focus on technology alone, Wind Energy Comes of Age critically examines a host of issues that will determine the future of this renewable resource, including:
* Wind energy's environmental benefits
* The design of wind turbines "as if people matter"
* Wind energy's impact on people and the environment
* Aesthetics and public acceptance
* Wind energy's potential
* Centrally directed vs. market-oriented R & D
* Wind energy's role in electric utilities
Wind Energy Comes of Age is extensively illustrated with more than 170 original line drawings, photographs, and charts. An annotated bibliography, tables of technical data, maps of wind resources, and a virtually exhaustive list of manufacturers, governmental agencies, and private organizations working with the wind further enhance the book's value as a reference. Not since the classic works of Putnam in 1948 or Golding in 1955 has there been a book on wind energy of this scope.
For those interested in the burgeoning wind energy field--engineers, researchers, environmentalists, policy specialists, and community leaders--Wind Energy Comes of Age is an essential resource.
Written by Paul Gipe, one of America's leading wind energy experts, Wind Energy Comes of Age is a comprehensive guide to the technology, economics, and politics of wind energy. Gipe has brought together information available nowhere else about American and European experience with wind energy. This landmark work is an indispensable reference source for engineers, researchers, environmentalists, planners, policy specialists, and community leaders who deal with this fast-growing field.
"A pragmatism born of meticulous research and wide field experience has made Paul Gipe one of windpower's most astute critics and most credible friends. He backs his exuberant chronicle with an insider's knowledge of the difficult process by which wind power has finally become practical. This is one of the best accounts of the rise of a technology I've ever seen."--Jay Baldwin, Whole Earth Review
"The wind energy field has waited a long time for a well-written, informative reference book like Paul Gipe's, Wind Energy Comes of Age. This book is a must-have for developers in need of technical or economic information, politicians who want to know both sides of the wind energy story, technicians who want a reliable reference and others interested in a well-rounded introduction to wind energy."--Torgny Mo?ller, Publisher, Windpower Monthly
"This book will make a major contribution to the development of wind energy in a responsible manner."--Neil Kelley, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Wind Technology Division
"For industry insiders as well as newcomers to the field, this book will be a valuable tool for understanding the development of wind power thus far."--Birger Madsen, Danish wind energy pioneer
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
America's leading wind energy expert presents a complete reference on the business and technology of generating electricity with wind. Covers the technology, economics and politics that have influenced the development of the wind energy industry in the U.S. and Europe. Describes advances made in improving reliability and performance and provides suggestions on how the industry can treat its imperfections. Includes several new important topics such as aesthetics and public acceptance of windmills.From the Author:
This book draws on personal experiences from nearly two decades of writing about wind energy and from a decade of observing California's wind industry. It also includes observations gleaned during the early 1990s from several tours of European wind projects, where I spoke with manufacturers, trade associations, and consultants about the future of wind energy. As part of the research for this book, I gazed at, listened to, walked among, and photographed wind turbines in Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Britain.
As both an observer of the wind industry and a participant in it, I have had the rare opportunity to see a dream materialize--to see wind energy come of age. As an observer, I have chronicled the industry's remarkable progress in trade publications as well as two previous books. As a participant, I have installed small wind turbines in Pennsylvania, testified before legislators about the benefits of wind energy, stood before angry crowds who were fearful that the wind turbines I advocated would take their firstborn, and answered so many questions from a public fascinated by the wind turbines in the Tehachapi Pass that I installed a low-power radio station to do it automatically.
As the reader will quickly grasp, I am not at arm's length from my subject. For much of my professional life, I have argued that wind energy makes economic and environmental sense, and I still believe that it does. Now, more so than ever, wind energy promises a safe and reliable source of electricity for today and tomorrow.
This book is partly an attempt to document wind energy's achievements. Part I examines where the technology stands today. It traces how far we have come in improving reliability and performance, and recounts how medium-sized wind turbines slew the giant progeny of the aerospace industry. Part I also warns against following a technological path littered with previous failures, and suggests that, despite its falling cost, wind energy should never become "too cheap to meter."
Like other technologies, wind energy has both its beauty marks and its blemishes. During the early 1990s, I became alarmed that the wind industry in the United States seemed headed toward repeating some of the mistakes we made in the 1980s. Fortunately, I have found that American wind developers--rather than the malicious marauders depicted by some critics--are, for the most part, managers with good intentions. Often they are simply ignorant of community or environmental values that others, myself included, take for granted.
How successful we are at working with our neighbors, siting our projects with care, and building aesthetically pleasing wind turbines will determine the extent to which wind energy ultimately fulfills its potential. For this reason, Part II looks closely at wind's aesthetic impact and how it can be minimized; discusses wind energy's broader impacts on people, land, and wildlife; and explains the benefits of this relatively benign technology, and how it is compatible with most other land uses. In Part II, I also call on the environmental community not only to take a more active role in fostering renewable energy, but also to join with us in ensuring that wind remains the environmentally-sound source of energy that it promised to be.
Part III explores the integration of wind turbines with utilities, considers whether wind is a suitable mate for methane, calls for sustained orderly development to avoid the boom and bust cycle seen in California during the 1980s, and looks at the technology's potential contribution to our energy mix.
Wind Energy offers a discourse useful to wind's proponents while also providing suggestions on how the industry can treat its blemishes. We have come so far during the past decade that now is an appropriate time to reflect on where we have been and on where we should be going.
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
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