Selling Wind Power With Misleading News Leads
From Yahoo News, April 7, 2022:
“Power generated by wind turbines in the United States hit a milestone last week, becoming the second-highest source of electricity in the country for a 24-hour period, according to the Energy Information Administration. Wind turbines generated more than 2,000 gigawatt-hours of electricity in the U.S. on Tuesday, March 29, more than was provided by nuclear and coal power plants that day.”
Great news, right? It sounds impressive, but it really isn’t so hot.
According to the US Energy Information Administration, the United States consumed “approximately” 3.8 trillion kilowatt-hours in 2020.
This means that the average daily consumption of electricity in the U.S. in 2020 was actually 10.4 BILLION kWh per day.
Those 2,000 Gigawatts generated by wind turbines translates into 2 billion kilowatts, which means that wind turbines generated just under 20% of the total energy requirements for a typical day in 2020. (Obviously, we don’t have figures for 2022 and I could find any for 2021 either.)
However, this “news story” is very misleading because that level of energy production was achieved for just one day.
How do I know that? I know that is true because otherwise, the report would have told us the number of consecutive days that wind power generated more electricity than coal or nuclear power. It is obvious (to anyone who has ever worked in a real newsroom) that this was an exceptional event, not a daily occurrence.
The point is this: the energy grid needs consistent power generation, and the winds don’t always blow and sometimes they just don’t blow hard enough to turn those turbines.
This “news story” was based on a press release. (Believe me on this. I’ve read enough press releases…and written enough of them…to recognize the animal when I see one.)
There’s another word for this type of press release: propaganda.
It is good propaganda if you believe that alternative energy generation is going to save us. It’s bad propaganda if it encourages people to put their faith in a false solution when a real solution (nuclear energy) is right there at our fingertips…but we refuse to use it.
Future generations will not be able to understand what happened in the 20th and 21st centuries. They will not be able to comprehend how so many people became so insane.