Scotland Wind Farm 2016

By Griff Witte October 15 2016 – Washington Post

EDINBURGH, Scotland — Even by the blustery standards of this notoriously squall-swept land, Aug. 7 was a particularly gusty day.

Bursts of rushing air swept across the green expanse of the Highlands, felling trees, submerging boats and forcing wind-whipped organizers to cancel food festivals and concerts.

But amid the gale-force havoc, the day also brought a critical milestone in a quiet energy revolution: For the first time ever, the army of spinning white turbines that has sprouted across the lush countryside generated enough electricity to power all of Scotland.

The exceptional output brought the country membership in a small but growing club of nations proving that the vision of a world powered by renewable fuels is closer than many realize. Long derided as a fantasy, a day’s worth of energy harvested purely from the sun and the wind has lately become reality in nations such as Portugal, Denmark and Costa Rica.

In those countries, and others, the gains in renewable production have come quickly and unexpectedly, offering a ray of hope amid dire predictions from scientists about the impact of carbon emissions on the planet.

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