The Disadvantages of Wind Power
- The largest disadvantage of wind power is the fact that wind is unpredictable and can fluctuate wildly. This means it is not easy to predict how much wind a region or turbine will be able to process to turn into electricity and without wind, it is not possible to generate energy via a wind turbine. This issue can be mitigates somewhat by clever positioning of wind turbines such as on high ground and in coastal areas but it is still a weakness associated with this form of energy production.
- In order to create more energy it is necessary to house more wind turbines. This can lead to a coastline or land mass becoming cluttered with wind turbines and often there is an objection from local residents towards the construction of wind turbines which sometimes delays or even prevents the building of turbines.
- Although some people find wind turbines to be beautiful and worthwhile additions to the landscape many (typically local to the turbines) people do not find wind turbines to be aesthetically pleasing and they will protest that the landscape should be allowed to flourish in its natural form.
- Large commercial wind turbines can be noisy when in operation. When they are operating together in large banks of wind farms it can be very noisy which is one of the reasons why many wind farms are sited offshore. A typical single large scale industrial wind turbine will produce noise that is equivalent to a small jet engine when in operation.
- The building of large numbers of wind turbines can often prove to be environmentally unfriendly. The construction involves siting steel rods in large man made holes that are filled with tons of concrete and steel that is necessary to secure the wind turbine in high winds.
- There have been reports that housing wind farms offshore can pose a danger to aquatic life in the form of low frequency vibrations and problems associated with navigation both underwater and above water.
- Although it has been stated in the advantages of wind power that the threat to bird and bat life is minimal, there are still occasions when wind turbines can kill flying animals. During the initial plans for siting wind farms it is a pre-requisite that planners take into account bird flight and migrationary patterns in order to mitigate any possible loss of life but the unfortunate truth is that wind turbines have been known to kill airborne animals from time to time.
- Wind power is not the cheapest method of producing energy even though the actual source is free. The manufacture and installation of wind turbines is relatively expensive and is often subsidised by government payments.