Tilting at Windmills – a Brief Update

By Andi May – Re-Blogged From WUWT

About this time last year, I wrote a light-hearted review of New Zealand’s love affair with Wind Generation.

Since then I’ve become interested in seeing just how effective these things really are. Where I live adjacent to a string of Turbines, we get some pretty impressive winds – 150Kph is not that unusual. But we also get days of complete calm – usually at times when electricity demand is at its highest.

Nonetheless, our green-biased Government elected just over a year ago are still pushing so-called renewables as the way of the future. Interestingly New Zealand already produces more than 80% of its energy from Renewables, with Geothermal and Hydro way ahead of Wind.

Ironically, the green movement vehemently oppose any new hydro projects, and insist on visually polluting the beautiful GodZone countryside with these wind turbines.

Eventually I decided to try and discover exactly just how successful and efficient these wind turbine things really are. But finding the data seems like hard work. I’ve been unable to locate data on individual windfarms (unless someone can help me out here), but I have located data covering each of the North and South Islands.

Since July last year, I have been collecting the data via a computer script that downloads data at 5 minute intervals and stores it in a MySQL database. I needed to wait a reasonable interval before analysing just to make sure I had a representative sample.

I’ve just done my first analysis, and the results are as predicted – shocking.


The above graph shows theoretical “Plated” capacity versus actual average production by month.

Here’s the supporting data:

Month Plated Capacity Generated MW Average Production
July 658 186.15 28.29%
August 658 132.50 20.14%
September 658 174.62 26.54%
October 658 157.63 23.96%
November 658 149.15 22.67%
December 658 124.54 18.93%
January 658 179.51 27.28%
February 658 157.86 23.99%

Clearly in 6 months, there has been no capacity added to the National Grid, and last July had a high of just 28.29% productivity yet December could only yield 18.93%.

These results are pretty damning and expose the deceit we are exposed to every time a new proposal is put forward.


Next time there’s a public meeting regarding how wonderful these visual pollutants are, at least I can now present data to refute many of the absurd claims. They’d be hard pressed to refute this data since it comes from the Government’s State-Owned Enterprise “Transpower” who manage the National Grid.

I have made my data available to anyone who wants to analyse it at http://www.andic.co.nz/windextract.csv



One thought on “Tilting at Windmills – a Brief Update

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