Aliens hate green energy!

Contributed by
Jan 8, 2009
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Turbine damage from a UFO! Feh.
Obviously, aliens hate the fact that we're going green: an energy-producing wind turbine in the UK was destroyed last Sunday. Mysterious lights were seen in the sky around the same time. Ergo, aliens want us to burn coal.

Hey, my conclusion is no dumber than assuming flying saucers were around in the first place. But that didn't stop people from assuming UFOs were behind the turbine's destruction.

What's funny is that we have a whole pile of rational explanations for this event. The lights have been identified as fireworks. While they probably didn't destroy the turbine, it's not completely out of the question. More likely, though it was a coincidence: the weather conditions were very cold, with icing a problem. Ice on one blade could have been flung into another, causing the destruction. Or ice could have built up in a crack or seam on the blade, bending it, throwing it off balance. At the size and speed of those blades, a small deviation can cause catastrophic damage.

Heck, even someone taking a shot at it with a rifle would explain what happened.

But that didn't stop the BBC and other news outlets from devoting a lot of time and space to the UFO angle (including The Mirror, which also posted a picture of a flying saucer from the movie "Forbidden Planet"). Of course, they're just quoting Dale Vince, the founder of Ecotricity, the owner of the turbine:

"Until we have some idea, some plausible explanation that it was not a UFO, I don't think we should rule it out".

Brilliant! Of course, they have no evidence Doctor Who didn't do it, so they can't rule that out either. Or maybe it was Jenny McCarthy! Windmills cause autism! Why, that would even explain Don Quixote! Was Cervantes ever chelated?

And to top it all off, the Ecotricity site has been using this for publicity, saying, incredibly, "We don’t as yet have any evidence that points us to a cause ... but speculation in the press is rife." Yes, speculation has been rife because the CEO of your company specifically mentioned UFOs.

Sheesh.

This kind of breathless nonsense is really, really dumb. It'll waste time during the investigation, it wastes space in the news, and it reduces the overall population's IQ by some fraction of a point as well.

Feh.

But hey, at least I can use this graphic now:

The stupid, it burns

Tip o' the tin foil beanie to John J Dempster, Thomas Siefert, and James Oberg.