Monday Moaning

Industrial Revolution in England

The world has become energy dependent. It started with coal and the Industrial Revolution and its still used today. Then came oil and the available energy increased; so our dependence. The miracle of electricity further increased our dependence until it was total. The modern world cannot live without energy.

Coal and oil were used to generate the monstrous demand, then came atomic energy, hailed as the environmental answer to belching tons of carbon into the atmosphere. Huge hydro-dam projects were the solution. Now the trend is toward wind farms with gigantic turbines blotting the landscape.

The modern wind farm

But man’s insatiable need will be his undoing. Coal and oil produce carbon; nuclear energy causes death and destruction (the Fukishima story hasn’t been played out yet, there is still the final act); Hydro power has drowned great swathes of nature, land and people; killing habitats, not to mention the detrimental socio-economic impact. Wind farms are not immune from problems either, reports of farmland becoming arid for miles behind the turbines as well as the damage caused by their support infrastructure, roads, pylons, etc.

But the turbines cause an even greater damage; not directly, but in their manufacture. This is an aspect that is not widely known; the public are not told.

The huge turbines need magnets.

Let’s take a moment to discuss their manufacture.

Nd-B-Fe magnetslook innocuous enough

The magnets are made of Neodymium-Iron-Boron alloy (Nd2Fe14B) which, thanks to its tetragonal crystal structure, is used to make the most powerful magnets in the world.

Where does this wonderful material come from?
One of the places is China, Inner Mongolia to be exact.
What are the ramifications for the Chinese whose land is destroyed, polluted and rendered useless and dead by the extraction and processing?

The lake of toxic waste at Baotou, China, which as been dumped by the rare earth processing plants in the background.

“The distinctly dirty truth about the process used to extract neodymium has been uncovered: it has an appalling environmental impact that raises serious questions over the credibility of so-called green technology.

The reality is that, as Britain flaunts its environmental credentials by speckling its coastlines and unspoiled moors and mountains with thousands of wind turbines, it is contributing to a vast man-made lake of poison in northern China. This is the deadly and sinister side of the massively profitable rare-earths industry that the ‘green’ companies profiting from the demand for wind turbines would prefer you knew nothing about.”

Quote and image from: Mail Online Read the rest of the sordid story. You’ll be shocked beyond belief.

What’s ‘green’ for the rich is death and misery for the poor.

No matter what man does to produce the energy we have become so reliant on, so dependent on, we can’t do it without some adverse impact on the planet.

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