Donald Trump really, really hates wind energy, but he doesn’t seem to understand how it works.
During a rally on Tuesday, the president declared that windmills kill birds and that, if you rely on wind energy, your television won’t run when the wind isn’t blowing.
Trump told the crowd, “And then all of a sudden it stops, the wind and the televisions go off, and your wives and husbands say, ‘Darling, I want to watch Donald Trump on television tonight, but the wind stopped blowing, and I can’t watch. There’s no electricity in the house.'”
It’s a claim that he’s repeated several times, including in a Hannity interview earlier this year.
Here’s a clip from his Tuesday rally in Pennsylvania:
President Trump criticizes windmills again in speech on energy:
"All of a sudden it stops, the wind and the televisions go off, and your wives and husbands say, 'Darling, I want to watch Donald Trump on television tonight, but the wind stopped blowing" https://t.co/AfEIFrfeM5 pic.twitter.com/iOJOPogrAc
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) August 13, 2019
Of course, that’s not how wind power works. Wind turbines (or windmills) feed into the power grid in the same way that solar panels feed into the power grid.
Even the Department of Energy notes in their FAQs about wind energy, “The U.S. power grid consists of a huge number of interconnected transmission lines that connect a variety of generation sources to loads … adding variable renewable power to the grid does not inherently change how the process of balancing electricity supply and demand works.”
Trump also repeated one of his favorite claims — that windmills “kill all the birds.” But, the DOE notes that windmills kill far fewer birds than power lines and birds are much, much more likely to die from a collision with a building than a windmill.
Trump has also claimed — without any evidence — that the noise from windmills cause cancer. The Department of Energy also calls that claim bogus. They note that there have been multiple peer-reviewed studies showing that there is no link between human health and windmills.