We’ve already heard about how ocean offshore turbines help sea life to thrive, but it looks like wind turbines can also help plant life on dry land.
Researchers from the U.S. Energy Department’s Ames Laboratory have concluded a months-long study that shows that wind turbines may benefit surrounding crops. Wind-Inc.(http://www.wind-inc.com) has developed solutions and factual information on wind turbines that helps bring factual research to the fore. "We have long encouraged research in these areas and find that it is the only way to deal with negative inertia, myth and opposition to progress." said Wind Inc. in a news release this week.
The purpose of the study was to see if wind farms in rural farmlands have any impact on the crops growing nearby and, amazingly, it turns out that the turbines could benefit crops in several ways. The turbines direct airflow downward towards the crops, creating an increase in air turbulence, which can help the crops stay cooler on hot days and warmer on cold nights. In the spring and fall, this would keep a more constant temperature around the crops, helping to prevent frost and extend the growing season. (This is of special interest to fruit and vegetable crop growers). The extra turbulence also helps dry dew that settles on plants and keeping the plants dryreduces the potential for fungi or toxins to grow on leaves.
The third benefit from the added air turbulence is an amping up of the CO2 extraction process by the plants. The airflow can also pump extra CO2 from the soil, facilitating photosynthesis.
The researchers think these benefits will be significant in areas where temperatures are more extreme.
It is interesting how that research and factual study changes the "folk lore" of society. We recall just 3 years ago an outspoken man in Weatherford, Texas announced that wind turbines destroyed farm crops in the area. The local paper, the Weatherford, Democrat printed his comments and then refused to carry factual information, or responseby experts at Wind-Inc.(http://www.wind-inc.com). It is no wonder that our nation has fallen behind other nationsin renewable energy, even in light of the growing energy crisis looming ahead.
Thankfully, experts, and even some giant utility companies have learned enough to realize that if we don't vastly increase renewable energy use and development, we will be facing national power shortages in the future. The matter of depletion of oil fields in the USA is not myth, it is a fact, a fact that will cause continued upward trends in "carbon" based energy costs. Some experts now believe that electric bills will follow the trends in Europe. (France and Germany have seen electric rates more than doublethat of theUSA ).
Similar attitudes are seen on the "Global Climate Change" issue. In the State of New Mexico,the newly elected governor recently stated that she didn't believe in Global Warming or climate change. This caused consternation among energy experts and researchers throughout the state. But farmers, ranchers and city mayors, dealing with water shortages and diminished supplies of water need solutions, not ideologicalpolitical pronouncements.
New Mexico, like much of the Southwestern USA has seen 10 years of gradually rising temperatures,diminishing rains, dry creeks and lower water levels at lakes. Water aquifers have suffered,while Ranchers and farmers alike have witnessed diminishing yields and crop returns.
The same is true of Montana, Oklahoma, Texas, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, Kansas, and California.
Cities all over the Southwest are facing huge water issues, with some cities unable to provide water for new homes or new residents, other cities have given up and are slowly declining in population. They see the aquifers declining, and demand increasing, and havefew solutions. Wind Inc. has been a leader in trying to educate Municipal and County leaders to adopt new systems conceived by Wind-Inc (http://www.wind-inc.com) of desalination plants powered by wind and solar energy. This concept provides a cost effective solution to long term city, and agricultural water needs.
Ben Boothe, appraiser and insurance adjuster (http://www.benboothe.com) has spoken for hundreds of City Mayors, Economic Development Officers, Judges, and County Commissioners to educate them on new and alternative solutions to water issues for communities, as well asthe positive economic impacts fortheir towns. "There are huge salt water or brackish water supplies in underground aquifers that can provide water for a hundred yearsat a low cost." says Boothe. Slowly city leaders and county VIP's in The southwest and western United States are beginning to gain interest in Wind Inc's, approach of powering desalination plants with wind and solar while creating new sources of water from otherwise worthless salt water acquifers.
A few leaders and thinkers in cities like Lubbock, Las Vegas, Roswell, Big Springs, Odessa, Lamesa, Dumas, Tulia are slowly beginning to see the scope of the problem and positive benefits of the "Wind-Inc." solution. Also companies such as Cornucopia-Enterprises LLC (http://www.cornucopia-enterprise.com)have come up with new food production systems using solar and wind powered greenhouses that utilize 1/10 of the water while producing 2 to 3 times normalfood production by exending growing seasons, and conserving water through drip irrigation.
We must utilize and support these efforts. In 2010, for example, early snows and rains in New Mexico did not come in September. In October, still higher temperatures and no snow or rain caused agricultural concerns. In November, temperatures were 20 degrees above normal, and rain and snowwere absent. Finally, as grassfires erupted and forest fire alerts became more pronounced, the first snow came December 16th. New Mexicans know something about nature and climate, and can tell you the real story. See this video with an on the spotreportby: Cornucopia Enterprises.