The following letter was submitted to local newspapers by Keyser WV resident Dallas Adams, Sr.
Pleased to read the press release from Eastern Tech College about their training of wind turbine technicians (News-Tribune, August26, pg. 1B) They are equipping local students for $17 dollar per hour (+ job benefit ) to keep wind turbines working. While I’m not certain that I would advise my grandson or granddaughter to pay tuition to a college and spend two years studying for a job that is at best a borderline living wage, goodness knows these jobs are needed.
Friends in Mt. Storm tell me those turbines break down very frequently. It’s too bad that Eastern Tech isn’t training local folks for Marcellus gas jobs. They pay more of a living wage and there will be many more than the ” 60 or so” wind jobs Eastern is planning to train annually.
Now, it is one thing for a college to tell the public what they are doing and another thing entirely for a college or university to actively promote, with significant misinformation. a particular business. Eastern has crossed that line and in so doing this press release does a great disservice to Eastern WV Community College and Technical Center.
The Dean of Career, Technical and Workforce Education did not tell the public the truth regarding the expected electricity generation from industrial wind in our region. When he stated , “Just last year, three new farms totaling 95 units with a combined generating capacity of 170 megawatts opened in counties neighboring our service district” he chose to omit something very important. Those turbines will generate a mere fraction of their generating capacity. In fact the PJM grid anticipates new wind facilities .will produce only 13% of their rated capacity. (PJM Manual 21, pg 19) The Dean did not ignore this essential information out of ignorance. After all he is an engineer with 23 years of experience in studying wind issues.
He also said that industrial wind is importance to national security. What nonsense???? No electricity generator that functions at its capacity only a small fraction of the time, can be depended upon in a national crisis. A few weeks ago, Texas went through an energy crisis and wind failed miserably.
Texas has 10,235 ,megawatts of installed wind generation capacity. On this past August 2, electricity demand in Texas hit 67,929 megawatts. Output from the state’s wind turbines was just 1,500 megawatts, 15% of their total nameplate capacity. On four days in August 2010, when electricity demand set records wind energy was able to contribute just 1-2 percent of total demand. For this insignificant contribution to their energy, Texas ratepayers are on the hook for $17, billion. Why should area ratepayers want to raise their bills for something that does not work????
Eastern. Keep telling us what you are doing. But for goodness sakes, stop selling your credibility to the wind salesman. It would be interesting for you to report the number of grad’s finding employment with the wind industry.
Dallas O. Adams Sr.