Wind power is a reliable energy source obtained from the wind. Also known as eolic energy, wind power is created by converting the energy produced during gusts of wind through wind turbines. Wind turbines are moved by the wind, which in turn, creates electrical energy.
But what are the advantages of wind power, and why is it a great choice? That’s what we’ll be exploring today. Read on to learn more about the key benefits of wind power, from reliability to the environmentally-friendly nature of wind power.
Wind Power is Abundant
First and foremost, wind can be found pretty much everywhere on Earth. Although the extent of wind power can depend on local conditions, harnessing wind power is relatively simple, and can be done on a global scale.
In 2023, we have accurate information on where the wind blows the strongest and where it is present most frequently, and this data helps to determine the most effective locations for wind plants, whether it be onshore or offshore.
Ultimately, the more windy an area is, the more energy can be produced. Placing a wind plant in an area with strong wind can quickly make up the overall costs.
Wind Power is Reliable
Although there may be times when the wind doesn’t blow as strongly, in the medium to long term, wind power is a reliable source of energy.
Unlike solar power, for example, wind power can be effective 24/7 if the conditions are right. It doesn’t depend on the time of day; instead, it depends on the presence of wind.
This can vary depending on seasons and locations, which is why great care is taken to determine the right location for wind plants. On the whole, wind power is a reliable resource that guarantees regularity in the longer term.
Wind Power Doesn’t Take Up Much Space
Wind turbines can be located both onshore and offshore. Onshore wind turbines don’t often take up too much space; the blades of wind turbines extend vertically. The base size is also small, taking up a very minimal area; especially in comparison to solar plants.
Wind Power Is Inexpensive
Wind power is a great source of renewable energy, which means fuel is not needed to power the turbines. This, in turn, makes wind power a generally affordable option.
Generally, the only costs associated with wind turbines are the raw materials and the maintenance costs – with little to no operational costs.
Electricity generation/ energy generation is slowly being decarbonised across the world – and investing in wind turbines is a low-cost, effective, and environmentally-friendly alternative.
Wind Power is Efficient
Wind power has excellent performance levels, and this may even be improved in the future with the improvement of technology.
The efficiency of wind power can vary, typically ranging from 40% to 50%. This is very close to the estimated maximum level, which is thought to be 59% according to Betz’s Law.
To put this into perspective, the efficiency of most residential solar panels is around the 20% ballpark.
Wind Power Requires Little Maintenance
It’s relatively simple to keep a wind power plant working efficiently. There are minimal breakages involved with wind power – and due to reliable digital monitoring, it’s easy to pick up on any issues.
Modern models are much more reliable than previous models, which means breakages rarely occur, and performance levels are at an all-time high.
Wind turbines may function effectively for years without needing any maintenance. However, small adjustments may be needed in order to extend their lifespan.
Wind Plants are Reversible
One of the key benefits of wind power is that wind plants can be easily reversed. Once a wind plant has finished its cycle, the land that the plant lay on can be completely restored.
Likewise, the plant itself can be restored to its original components, and the materials used in the plant can be recycled. Raw materials from previous wind plants can be used to create new wind plants too, which is in line with the environmentally friendly nature of renewable energy.
Wind Power Can Power Homes
Wind power isn’t just used for commercial purposes/ government purposes or large-scale operations. Modern wind turbines can be used to power a home on a reduced scale.
Mini wind power systems can be used on a domestic level to power just one building. In the future, more homes may be powered using micro-wind power.
In many cases, wind power is used to power residential homes alongside other renewable energy/ natural energy sources such as solar power or natural gas.
Wind Power is Environmentally Friendly
Ultimately, the main advantage of wind power is that it is a clean energy source compared to traditional forms of electricity production such as fossil fuels.
Before we explore the environmental benefits of wind power, let’s discuss how exactly it works. When the wind blows, the wind turbines turn – generating kinetic energy.
This powers the generator located inside the turbine, creating electricity. Although they work more efficiently during strong winds, even a light breeze can generate electricity.
Wind power is clean energy; it does not emit greenhouse gases or pollute the earth – they do not cause impacts on the environment. This means that by using wind energy, you’re reducing your carbon footprint and helping to keep the environment clean.
Wind power is considered the most environmentally-friendly source of energy with the lowest impact. Any emissions and resources used come from the production, installation and transportation stages of the process. In many cases, resources used to create wind turbines are recycled.
In most cases, wind turbines are located in mountainous areas and at sea. However, when they are placed on land (e.g fields), the area can still be used for farming or growing crops with very little disturbance.
Some people that live near wind farms complain about the noise caused by the turbines, but steps are being taken to reduce the noise pollution associated with wind power.