Donald Trump continued his war against renewable energy this weekend, telling a crowd of supporters at a rally that wind turbines were the real culprit behind climate change.
“I never understood wind,” Trump told the crowd. “I know windmills very much, I have studied it better than anybody. I know it is very expensive. They are made in China and Germany mostly, very few made here, almost none, but they are manufactured, tremendous — if you are into this — tremendous fumes and gases are spewing into the atmosphere. You know we have a world, right?”
“So the world is tiny compared to the universe,” Trump continued. “So tremendous, tremendous amount of fumes and everything. You talk about the carbon footprint, fumes are spewing into the air, right spewing, whether it is China or Germany, is going into the air.”
As The Hill noted Sunday, Trump is correct that the manufacture of wind turbines — like most things — does cause some carbon emission. But wind farm-generated electricity saved about 200 million tons of carbon pollution in 2018 and studies have found a wind project typically saves more than its carbon footprint in the first six months.
Trump, by comparison, has done little to reduce his own carbon dioxide emissions, flying in private planes, acquiring massive mansions, and erecting large golf resorts.
Trump has long objected to wind energy and the way wind turbines spoil his view. Earlier this year he was forced to pay 225,000 pounds sterling — a little less than $300,000 — to Scotland’s government after mounting a failed crusade to block offshore turbines near his Balmedie golf resort.
“I want to see the ocean, I do not want to see windmills,” he said in 2006 before launching the multi-year legal battle.
In 2012 Trump falsely told the tourism committee of the Scottish National Parliament that those turbines would “lead to the almost total destruction of Scotland’s tourism industry.”
Trump has claimed without evidence that wind turbines are dangerous, cause cancer, and bring blackouts. His administration has pushed for significant cuts in federal funding for renewable energy, while pushing to let coal plants spew more toxic waste.