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“Wind Power: A Turning Point” (Revisiting Worldwatch Institute Paper #45 from 1981)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- May 6, 2013

“From all signs, the wind-energy field has reached that all-important turning point.”

– C. Flavin, Wind Power: A Turning Point (Worldwatch Institute: July 1981), p. 47.

Christopher Flavin, long associated with the Washington, DC-based Worldwatch Institute (see appendix below), was among the most thoughtful and prolific energy writer in the neo-Malthusian energy/environmentalist camp. His tone was positive, his writing clear, and his research well documented. Flavin’s work is scholarly compared to his (shrill) predecessor, Lester Brown, the founder of WorldWatch. Still, Flavin’s final products are little more than lawyer briefs for energy/climate alarmism.

Flavin is now paying the price for assuming alarmism to hype market-incorrect energies. He banked on wind and solar as primary energies despite the fact that they were dilute, intermittent, and environmentally invasive. Flavin pretty much forgot his early caution and warnings about windpower (see his introduction to Paul Gipe’s Windpower Comes of Age).