Greenhouse Gas Pollution by Wind Turbines

The environmental damage (e.g. by the mining of lithium) caused by the push for electric vehicles is well-documented. The following article reports on another noxious side effect of “green” energy: pollution caused by the sulfur hexafluoride used in wind turbines.

Many thanks to Hellequin GB for translating this article from Der Wochenblick. The translator’s comments are in square brackets:

Chemical substance in wind turbines worse than carbon dioxide

Wind turbines are worse climate killers than domestic flights

One of the long-known but little-noticed consequences of the expansion of wind turbines, which has been pushed by hook or by crook, is the fact that wind turbines contain the chemical compound sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) as an insulator. This contributes more to the greenhouse effect than all German domestic flights, and is not called a massive “climate killer” for nothing. This connection is ignored or even hushed up by green wind power fetishists.

SF6 is not only 22,800 times more effective than the same amount of carbon dioxide, it also remains in the atmosphere for over 3,000 years before it decomposes again. 25 years ago the Kyoto Protocol stipulated that SF6 emissions must be limited. However, there is still no legal basis for this, only a voluntary commitment by the industry to only use the substance in closed systems and to recycle or chemically neutralize it at the end of its life. In addition, the quantities used and recycled are to be recorded and reported.

Much of the contamination is airborne

However, scientific studies and the Federal Environment Agency came to the conclusion that more than 50 percent of the reported SF6 is in the air in Europe. So the data reported by the industry must be grossly wrong. Research by the ARD magazine “Panorama” — which is guaranteed to be harmless in terms of its political orientation — revealed that every owner of a wind turbine that is to be dismantled must take care of the SF6 recycling himself. Since there are no corresponding controls, it makes sense to simply let the substance escape into the air.

The wind turbine manufacturers Nordex and Vestas claimed that there are currently no alternatives to SF6, minimal amounts of SF6 are released into the air during operation of wind turbines and proper end-of-life disposal of wind turbines is assured. [Will SF6 be the next gummi-bear flavour?]

Alleged lack of alternatives only a result of the price war

The alleged indispensability and lack of alternatives to the material is probably mainly due to the price war among the wind turbine manufacturers, which does not allow any expensive changes. In fact, both Siemens Energy and various suppliers of high-voltage switches used in small substations have developed climate-neutral alternatives to SF6.

The EU is now aiming to restrict and then ban SF6. A transition period until 2030 is currently planned. However, it is again questionable whether the possibly extremely rising costs for wind turbines as a result will drive the desired expansion, which, however, will not be sufficient in any case to replace Germany’s loss of nuclear and coal energy. This adds another to the countless absurdities of German climate policy. Because with its wind power course, it remains the worst air polluter in Europe for the time being.

Afterword from the translator:

The green ideology (or should that be idiocy?) is clear cut. We also can’t confuse them with the facts; their little pea-brains would explode and then we really would have a serious environmental disaster on our hands. The biggest problem I can see for humanity and the planet as a whole is that this specific breed of “people” are heavily infested with an STED (Systemically Transmitted Educational Disease) called ACADEMENTIA. Only the complete eradication of the host itself can save us.

3 thoughts on “Greenhouse Gas Pollution by Wind Turbines

  1. I’m not sure how seriously this should be taken, honestly. SF6 may be a potent substance, but the amounts used in these electrical components are small. And it would only escape if the device got damaged or was disposed of in an uncontrolled manner. Furthermore, such switches are not just used in wind turbines but have many applications. How accurate the measurements are or can be of how much of the gas already is in the atmosphere would be worth a lengthy scientific article in itself and without knowing more about that, we should be careful not falling into blind alarmism. This doesn’t mean there can’t be a problem with it, but if it was, the consequences would a) apply to all fields of usage and b) the technology would likely be able to be replaced with something else and therefore not likely become a hindrance for wind power expansion. I see better chances with the arguments of its killing birds and the more recently discovered drought problem.

  2. These turbines also leak oil, cause more power lines to be connected underground to each v. a single power plant, and they massively kill birds. An example of this can be seen in the Altamont Pass in California. Many of these are not working.

  3. I don’t want to discount that wind is a legitimate power source, and if there is one good reason to think of alternatives which officials won’t ever admit, then it is to wean us off of having to buy oil from furfaced fanatics who will only plot our destruction for the money we give them.

    But the way we’re going about it right now is extremely reckless. Environmental consequences are only beginning to be understood, it sure looks squeaky clean but no large-scale removal of energy from the environment stays without its own effects.

    Even if we just take what we know already for starters, vertical rotors would be better, if only slightly less efficient but this is outweighed by several other advantages which actually should appeal especially to environmentalists. They are not top-heavy and therefore much easier on the foundations needed. The Savonius type as ideal choice can be easily avoided by birds because it appears as a solid obstacle to them. Small versions of them can be mass-produced very cheaply, much cheaper than solar cells, and put on the roof of every house, on every mast or pole as support (won’t be enough for full supply but every bit helps). If we find them ugly in the landscape, well we have that already. Come up with a better alternative and we’ll take them down again. But what is done now is really not good.

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