Bog Down, Wind’s Up

ENVIRONMENT Peat has been used as a source of energy in Ireland for at least 1,000 years. But it may be on its way out, as the Emerald Isle turns to another energy source of which it has unlimited quantities: Wind. (The Economist) Use our study guide to learn about peat, the forgotten fossil fuel. Discussion Ideas The short Economist article details how Ireland is … Continue reading Bog Down, Wind’s Up

Iran’s Centuries-Old Windmills May Soon Stop Turning

WORLD Without regular attention, Iran’s centuries-old windmills may one day stop. (Nat Geo News) How do windmills and wind turbines work? Use our resource to better understand wind energy. Teachers, scroll down for a quick list of key resources in our Teachers Toolkit, including a link to today’s easy locator map. Discussion Ideas The windmills of Nashtifan, Iran, have been operating for between 500 and … Continue reading Iran’s Centuries-Old Windmills May Soon Stop Turning

Energiewende? Energy what?

ENVIRONMENT Germany’s relentless push into renewable energy has implications far beyond its shores. By creating huge demand for wind turbines and solar panels, it has helped lure big Chinese manufacturers into the market, and that combination is driving down costs faster than almost anyone thought possible just a few years ago. (New York Times) Use our resources to learn more about renewable energy. Discussion Ideas … Continue reading Energiewende? Energy what?

Wind Farm Project Halted

WORLD Expansion plans at the London Array, one of the world’s largest offshore wind farms, have come to a sudden halt. Owners blame concerns about migrating birds. (BBC) Use our resources to better understand the debate about offshore wind farms. Discussion Ideas Read the BBC article, then read through our activity “Stakeholder Debate: Wind Energy.” Adapt the activity’s analysis for the London Array debate. Who … Continue reading Wind Farm Project Halted

Wind Power: It’s the Way of the Future, Y’all

As a Houstonian whose
father works in the oil industry (oil reservoir management to be exact), I
found this issue surprising, compelling, and extremely relevant even to those
who live outside the Lone Star State…


Texas may not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of alternative energy. Rather, it’s probably the state most
associated with oil production and consumption (e.g. “Texas T” from The Beverly Hillbillies). “Black gold” certainly plays a strong role in
Texas’ economy and history (it has been the
top oil producing state since the 1920s), but the Lone Star State is also gaining a reputation as a
leader in alternative energy. Texas is investing in wind
resources more than any other state, having just committed $4.93 billion to new
transmission projects
. Nationwide, only 1 percent of electric power is
generated by wind sources. By 2030, experts
estimate that figure could jump to 20 percent if other states follow Texas’ lead.


Wind energy can be captured by wind turbines like these in Missouri
Photo courtesy of
Popular Science

Continue reading “Wind Power: It’s the Way of the Future, Y’all”