One can only react with disappointment, and a bit of amusement, over the tactics that some people use to try to spread a false narrative. Especially when the people, or person, involved purport to be objective and "follow the data." One such blog is WUWT, WattsUpWithThat, which styles itself as "The World's Most Viewed Site on Global Warming and Climate Change."
I have read many articles on WUWT, and have written a few that were published there (about one dozen thus far). At times, I have left comments and responded to the comments of others. The blog owner, Anthony Watts, has done immeasurable good for the world, in my opinion. He has investigated and published the incredibly sorry state of affairs with the US temperature measuring stations. He has also helped to publicize the rather amazing feats of wrong-doing that occurred and are still occurring in the arcane world of climate science.
However, Mr. Watts and I disagree on the subjects of renewable energy and nuclear energy. He has told me, and has written, that nuclear is the way of the future. That is clearly, in my view, not only not economic but not possible. The economics are very clear, with the most recent effort at building a world-class nuclear power plant using two reactors of the EPR design and to be built in the UK at Hinkley Point. That proposed plant is to cost US$26 billion, but the cost does not include the usual amounts for financing or interest on loans. Instead, the French government is allowing EDF to sell shares of stock, with the government purchasing 3/4 of those shares to finance its portion of the power plant.
Power from Hinkley Point C is to be sold at the wholesale level for US$ 145 per MWh, or 14.5 cents per kWh. That is far more than the price from other generators, but actually less than what a merchant nuclear plant would charge, having to add in financing costs. If one added in financing costs over the 10 to 12 years of construction, the wholesale power price from Hinkley Point C would be 19 to 20 cents per kWh.
The impossibility of nuclear energy powering the planet, long-term, is presented by Professor Derek Abbot in his paper published in IEEE. Professor Abbot gives 15 excellent reasons why nuclear cannot be the energy source over the long term. Chief among those reasons is the inability to recycle the irradiated alloy metals, and literally running out of metal to build new plants.
But, what prompted this article is the piece on WUWT a few days ago ( see link) that showed a failed wind-turbine project at a small college in Illinois, Lake Land College. It appears to me that WUWT has a tendency to publish only articles that highlight failures of wind energy. With one exception, and that one is an article I wrote that was published there. That positive article described the increase energy production from careful arrangement of vertical-axis wind turbines (VAWT) so that downwind turbines received stronger wind from those upwind. see link to "Location location, location: Wind Turbine Power Output Increased 10x" from July 16, 2011.
A quick search through the past 2 years of WUWT articles with the word "wind" shows zero articles in favor of wind energy, out of 50 articles. A few of the articles had nothing to do with wind energy, but had some other context for the word. Even excluding perhaps 10 articles on other uses for the word "wind", that leaves 40 out of 40 negative articles.
The most recent article from a few days ago describes the short life and very low output of two tiny, 100 kW wind turbines at Lake Land College. I left a brief comment, which is the basis for the points made below. Excerpts from my comment are in quotes below.
"This (WUWT) article appears to be yet again an example of confirmation bias at WUWT against any example of a renewable energy source that has a problem. We have seen featured on WUWT, just from my memory, a wind turbine that caught fire, a wind turbine being de-iced by a helicopter, a solar power tower project that actually works but is in the news for barely missing its estimated production volume, and now this on a small wind turbine that did not perform as expected."
As mentioned just above, WUWT has a history of bringing out the examples of failure. It is certainly cherry-picking the data to do so, though. More on this a bit later.
"Second, a bit of research shows that this wind project, two small turbines of 100 kW each, cost a bit above average for that size wind turbine at barely over $400,000 US for the both. What is glaringly missing from the article, and the commentary above, is that one of the wind turbines was installed with a defective rotor bearing, so of course it never performed to expectations. This fact is from another article on the college’s wind turbines, see below.
" “The 40-inch bearing is the cause of this disassembly, which is likely the result of a manufacturing error that came to light during the first months of the turbine’s operation,” explained Tillman (of Lake Land College). “We suspected this flaw was preventing the turbine from operating properly and Bora (the turbine manufacturer) confirmed our suspicions. We can now move forward to make the repair and get the turbine back in working order.” — source: http://www.lakelandcollege.edu/dv/ccs/news/detail.cfm?id=1681 " see link
Note that the WUWT article featured a misleading price for the turbines, citing a $2.5 million government grant, although at one point it did state that the turbines cost only 18 percent of that grant.