Why do I need a wind turbine?

Perhaps you don't. But increasingly, we depend on computers at home, and we need timers to make gadgets work properly. These have to be reset if power cuts occur, even if they are of very short duration.

Many of us have gas central heating systems which will not work when there's a power cut. The safety cut-out activates when the grid falters, and nothing you can do will turn it back on until power is restored.

More of us earn our living at home, on the computer, in what Toffler called (twenty years ago, in "The Third Wave") "The Electronic Cottage". Computers are very sensitive to "spikes" of voltage, which seem to be more frequent nowadays. A spike can ruin a morning's work on your computer, lose a file, or damage your hard drive.

If you have a home office, a sensible way of maintaining your electricity supplyis to have some photovoltaic panels, or a wind turbine, to make what is known as a "UPS", which means an "Uninterruptable Power Supply". For office purposes, you will be independent of the Grid. You will have enough energy to power a computer or two, and to use a printer on and off, and you'll have low-energy lighting, all powered off some big batteries and an inverter fed by your wind / solar input.

Many home businesses are doing this. And with the likelihood of politicians procrastinating whilst our nuclear stations and half our coal stations are gradually switched off, anyone with a stand-alone supply in his home office will have an advantage over his competitors.

It won't do the environment any harm, either - or your pocket.

Incidentally, I would not recommend the much-touted option of feeding your excess electricity back into the grid.

You may get a refund, but there is no environmental benefit at all (see my remarks on "Spinning Reserve"), and the side effect (which they don't tell you) is that when there's a power cut, you will have no power. You're wired to the Grid, and you no longer have a stand-alone supply. That's the price you pay for the financial incentives on offer.

ND / Habitat21

Back to top

Energy Policy
Fuel to Electricity
Nuclear Power
Wind Turbines