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Wind Energy

What is wind energy?

The natural heating and cooling patterns of the earth result in moving air which we call wind. Wind energy refers to using or collecting energy from this wind.

How do we use wind energy?

Wind energy has been in use for thousands of years in the form of sailing boats and hundreds of years in the form of windmills. Windmills use wind for mechanical energy to perform tasks such as grinding or powering other machinary. Rather than powering machinary, wind turbines convert wind energy into electrical power that can be used or stored for later use.

Why use wind energy?

Unlike most other forms of energy such as coal and fossil fuels, wind energy is virtually unlimited and is clean. We will never run out of it and it exists everywhere.

Who uses wind energy?

Everyone soon could could be! In 1990, less than 1% of power in the US came from wind and worldwide 3.6 billion kWh was generated in 16 countries. Today it is nearing 9% in the US and worldwide 1.42 trillion kWh was generated in 127 countries!

Wind Power Facts:

“Of all the forces of nature, I should think the wind contains the largest amount of motive power … Take any given space of the earth’s surface, for instance, Illinois, and all the power exerted by all the men, beasts, running water and steam over and upon it shall not equal the 100th part of what is exerted by the blowing of the wind over and upon the same place. And yet it has not, so far in the world’s history, become properly valued as motive power. It is applied extensively and advantageously to sail vessels in navigation. Add to this a few windmills and pumps and you have about all. As yet the wind is an untamed, unharnessed force, and quite possibly one of the greatest discoveries hereafter to be made will be the taming and harnessing of it.” - Abraham Lincoln