Saturday, September 22, 2012

The wind dies down

Siemens is laying off one-third of its workforce within its wind-energy U.S. operations for lack of orders.

Richard Weiss, Bloomberg, 19 September 2012 (hat tip: Early Warning)
Siemens AG will eliminate 615 jobs at U.S. factories producing windmills in response to declining orders, dealing a blow to Chief Executive Officer Peter Loescher's push into environmentally friendly energy sources.
Multiple troubles face wind industry (no link)
Diane Cardwell, New York Times, 21 September 2012 (via Raleigh's News & Observer)
Fairless Hills, PA
Last month, Gamesa, a major maker of wind turbines, completed the first significant order of its latest innovation: a camper-size box that can capture the energy of slow winds, potentially opening up new parts of the country to wind power.
But by the time the last of the devices, worth more than $1.25 million, was hitched to a rail car, Gamesa had all but shut down its factory here and furloughed 92 of the workeers who made them.
Weak demand for electricity, the cheap pricing of natural gas, the flooding of the market with cheaper (state and currency supported) Chinese competitors are all sited for the loss of jobs.  One item I did not see noted, but probably should have been, the lack of free capital to make the switch over.
The key here is not whether or not renewable sources of energy can be harnessed to replace fossil fuel, but will they.  We are not moving at lightning speed.  And when I look at the solar panel industry, they are busy trying to erect various certification requirements to inhibit competition.  Not exactly the sign of an industry going all-out.


PioneerPreppy said...

I have still not seen any non-biased stats on whether any of these alternative energy schemes pay out and use less overall oil per unit of energy produced. I am sure they can produce energy without using oil but not at anything near what is needed and not the way these companies and endeavors continue to try and do it.

I am no expert in energy engineering of course but still.

russell1200 said...


In theory there is plenty of sun, wind, ocean currents, et cetera.

There are some that argue that we also have the means to construct all that we need.

My point is that it doesn't matter if its not getting built.

There are a lot of issues with input versus output, but I thought I remembered seeing somewhere that wind was one of the better options as far as that went.

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