Posts Tagged ‘wind’

Just What the Heck is This Mysterious Green Thing Getting Installed High Above Civic Center? A Windmill?

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

I’m voting for windmill, but I’m getting a pre-invasion-Iraq vibe from the thing so you never know.

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Anyway, I gots to know but I don’t want my curiosity to interfere with my lifestyle so I’m going to assign all three* of my “interns” to get on this, stat, while I go to some trendy coffee bar and bitch about people who are youngersmartercutermoretalentedrichermoreedumacatedmorepopular than I. Why oh why won’t the world recognize my genius? Now, if I only had a million dollars…

*How wish I could pay them more (or at all, hah!), ’cause they’re so talented and whatnot. Oh how I wish.

Jerry Brown Throws Down: Brokers a Deal to Have Those Altamont Pass Windmills Kill Fewer Raptor Birds

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

Our California Attorney General Jerry Brown can’t abide thousands of California’s raptors getting chewed up by fast-spinning windmill blades, so he’s struck a deal.

Get all the deets below.

El Protector de la Gente, Jerry Brown:

via Thomas Hawk

Don’t mess with Texas, pardner. Them boids is big:

Until they fly through the Altamont Pass. Then they die:

All the deets, after the jump


All Those Airplanes Making Noise Over San Francisco are Landing at OAKland – A Rare and Dangerous Fed-Ex MD-11 Jumbo

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Here’s a recent view from the Western Addition towards the west, so the giant American flag you can see is indicating an atypical stiff breeze from the south, more or less.

Airline passengers don’t fly in three-engined tri-jets anymore because the concept isn’t fit for the 21st century. But the stuff you order on the Amazon rides old-school Fed-Ex Cargo McDonnell Douglas DC-10‘s and MD-11‘s all the time.

Now, the DC-10 got a bad rep about three decades back – some of that wasn’t its fault (like when a pilot heard 1500 feet instead of 1500 meters) but some of it was. So Mickey D came out with a replacement, the MD-11. It was better in a lot of ways but it turned out to be more crashy than its predecessor and that’s a whole story in itself.*

Anyway, these MD trijets generally do fine when they land facing straight into the wind, as here:

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Stay safe in your pterodactyls, in your flying dinosaurs, Fed-Ex pilots!

*Like how they made the landing gear stronger to handle the stretched body, so they’re stronger than the wing they’re hanging from – that situation has killed passengers and pilots. McDonnell Douglas simply tried way too hard to make up for the fact that its only jumbo design just happened to have an unnecessary third engine sucking up a lot of fuel.

Run for the Hills, Ma Barker, ‘Cause the Windpower People are in Town – Windmills will be a NIMBY Nightmare

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

The driver of this corporate pick-em-up probably had no idea, but s/he parked her/his rig right next to the residence of one of San Francisco’s most notorious NIMBYs and, well, if the NIMBYs already hate Life and Everthing In It now, just imagine how they’re going to react to windpower in the 415.

Let’s inventory the possible complaints now, shall we?

As seen near Golden Gate Park, a truck from Energy Management Services, LLC parked near the ramparts of the NIMBYs’ Fortress of Reaction:

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Let’s see here:

1. Noise

2. Lights

3. Danger of falling objects

4. Bird killings

5. Deadly EMF transmissions from monitoring equipment

6. Nearby property values/ obstruction of scenic views

And that’s just for starters.

You ought to start up a 501(c)(3) right now so you’ll be ready when windpower kicks off…

Switch off the mind and let the heart decide
who you were meant to be
Flick to remote and let the body glide
There is no enemy!

Etch out a future of your own design
We’ll tailored to your needs
Then fan the flame and keep the dream alive
Of a continent
A continent a continent a continent a –

Shatter the lens and grind it into sand
One measured exposure
Scatter the seed and furrow in our land
The future is roses! Roses!
Switch off the mind and let the heart decide
There is no enemy!
Lift up the hearts of this your only tribe
We’re a continent
A continent a continent a continent a

NIYFY! Twin Peaks NIMBYs Say Hell No to Miraloma Park Man’s Dream of a Front Yard Wind Turbine

Monday, August 16th, 2010

Dude wants to put a Skystream 3.7 windmill turbine in his front yard on windblown Teresita Boulevard*, but area NIMBYs are having none of that. They’re saying Not In Your Front Yard. The whole concept “irks” them, you dig? It’s stiring up debate is what it’s doing.

Comes now the San Francisco Coalition of NIMBYhoods to rain on one Nathan Miller’s parade. They’re basically calling him stupid here:

Whereas existing turbine windmills were not designed for residential City use, and exceed in height and width the appropriate scale for a San Francisco residential neighborhood and delivering only a fraction of the promised power because sufficient vertical and horizontal clearance is impossible in nearly all residential neighborhoods in San Francisco;”

Why would anyone want to live in an area with such emotional no-nothings in charge of things?

Anywho, here’s what backyard windmills look like these days:

Oh well. A complete list of the windmill-haters making up one of the hundreds of coalitions about town, after the jump.

The fact is, this friction
Will only be worn by persistence
Leave out conditions
Courageous convictions
Will drag the dream into existence

*Fell is just a “street” with four lanes in one direction, but single-lane Teresita, which winds it’s way through the bucolic suburbs of the 415, is a “boulevard.” Go figure.


San Francisco Manages to Go Its Own Way, Despite the Prevailing Winds

Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

One of these flags was put up by an agency of the federal government and the other was put up by the City and County of San Francisco.

Just try to guess which is which.

Anyway, the rainbow flag refused to follow the lead of Old Glory for as long as I looked.

One of these days, these two flags just might point in the same direction…

The Windy Western Presidio isn’t the Best Place for Outdoor Wedding Photos

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

Or, I don’t know, maybe it is. As long as you don’t mind if your veil blows in the wind straight out, like the long, long hair of Disney‘s Pocahontas.

Passers by were cheering for this couple, anyway.

The scene near the Immigrant Point Overlook on Lincoln Boulevard with the shutterbug far off to the left:

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San Francisco Enjoyed a Day Without Wind Last Saturday, October 24th, 2009

Monday, October 26th, 2009

It’s rare to be able to look up at the American flags atop the 345 California Building in the Financh and see that they’re hanging listlessly. Verily, October 24th, 2009 was San Francisco’s Day Without Wind.

See? Click to expand:

IMG_9465 copy

And this held true all the way to the evening hours way up at Twin Peaks, where people could enjoy the view without risk of hypothermia.

But, be warned. The winds will return with a quickness soon.

Oh well.

Colma, CA is a Land of Fog and Cemeteries and Shut-Down Car Dealerships

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

Here’s Colma (nee Lawndale until 1941), CA, the West’s #1 necropolis. Why does it have its own BART station and musical? No one knows.

But what it does have includes car dealerships (both kinds – the dead and the living dead), fog, and, of course, cemeteries. Truly, it is the Land of Wind and Ghosts.

A look down Serramonte Boulevard.

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Not too long ago, Tom Hanks got his giant black Lexus from a dealership on this street, but all the Lexuseses are gone now. Will they return? No one knows.

See you there, on the next dreaded sunny day.

The Pickens Energy Plan vs. the Anschutz Plan vs. the Mt. Shasta Ski Bowl

Thursday, March 26th, 2009

Well the T. Boone Pickens medicine show came to town yesterday, so San Franciscans got the chance to see details of the Pickens Plan at the Commonwealth Club, the Western Hemisphere’s oldest and largest public affairs forum. 

The Plan is another one those ever-popular “public private partnerships,” which in this case has the federal government paying a couple hundred spare billion dollars to build electric transmission lines for proposed windmills in the Midwest.

Making the pitch last month with Al Gore in Washington D.C.:

via the Center for American Progress Action Fund

But what about the Phil Anschutz (yes, the very same Anschutz billionaire dude with a longtime interest in the Bay to Breakers civic event!) Plan? Let’s see:

On July 29, The Anschutz Corp.,through its affiliate Transwest Express LLC, said it had acquired the rights to develop a proposed $3 billion, 900-mile transmission line capable of moving 3,000 megawatts of power from wind farms in southern Wyoming to markets in Southern California, Las Vegas and Phoenix.”

See? Somebody is trying to get something done without asking for hundreds of billions of your money. And that brings us to the white elephant on the white mountain up in northern Northern California.

Back in the 1950’s, the Everitt Memorial Highway on Mount Shasta was built so that the Mount Shasta Ski Bowl resort could be built. Did that project make sense?

The old Mount Shasta Ski Bowl had been built in 1958 in a huge open cirque much higher up on the southern flank of the volcano, with a lodge at 7,800 ft and lifts topping out above timberline at 9,200 ft. However, the ski area had often been in financial trouble over the next two decades, and a massive avalanche in January 1978 which destroyed the main chairlift was the finishing blow. The Ski Bowl closed permanently after that…”

So just as the risk of this Shasta project was building an expensive road to nowhere, one of the risks of the Pickens Plan is building power lines to nowhere.

How is the Anschutz Corporation’s wind energy project working out? That’s a good thing to keep an eye on when you’re considering building a Bridge to Nowhere, or a Pickens transmission grid, or things like that.

O.K. fine.

Oh, and speaking of the Commonwealth Club, its ridiculous website’s popup ads remind us all of the upcoming Distinguished Citizen Award Dinner, coming up on Fiday, April 17, 2009 at the Fairmont Hotel. Enjoy. 

Each year, The Club honors individuals who have made significant and enduring contributions to the Bay Area and California community, and who embody the principles and values of The Commonwealth Club.

The Annual Dinner is also The Club’s most significant fundraising event, raising funds to support its important nonprofit public forum mission throughout the year.