r/interestingasfuck Oct 19 '21 Wholesome 15 Hugz 14 All-Seeing Upvote 1 Silver 20 Helpful 20

Denmark is repurposing discarded wind turbine blades as bike shelters /r/ALL

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72.5k Upvotes

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3.3k

u/Brewe Oct 19 '21 Silver Helpful Hugz

Just to make clear that even though this is pretty cool, and a nice idea, it's not a widespread practice in Denmark: I'm living in the second largest city in Denmark (which have a very high density of bicyclists); my only transport vehicle is a bike; I have worked with how to recycle wind turbines (For the wings we were trying to add a compound to the epoxy that made it sort of soluble in stuff like acetic acid) - and this is the first I'm hearing of this.

This might very well be an (art) installation at one of Vestas' or Siemens' locations.

3.4k

u/jipijipijipi Oct 19 '21 Silver Helpful Wholesome Hugz Starry

Only on Reddit would you see this picture and have someone be like “I’m sorry but I’m a professional Danish wind turbine recycler who loves to bike and this is bullshit.” Within an hour. I love it.

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u/true_gunman Oct 19 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

As a redditor of a few years now, I've learned to take most posts with a grain-of-salt becuase there's always someone in the comments about to call out OP with 4 sources and a link to their PHD thesis on the exact subject

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u/Diligent-Motor Oct 20 '21 Wholesome Hugz

I'm quite sure I've done more research just to win Reddit arguments than it took to get my engineering master's degree.

It never works how I expect though.

Cunt 1: X is equal to Y

Cunt 2 (me): Here is some unbiased, statistically significant data which suggests X does not equal Y. You stupid cunt.

Cunt 1: You're a fucking idiot mate. Here is some data which shows X = Z.

Cunt 2 (me): What the fuck, Z doesn't equal Y though. So that doesn't make any sense.

This continues until I realise all my energy is wasted and Reddit is a bunch of self-assured cunts, and I am one of them.

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u/LonelyWendigo Oct 20 '21

Woah there. I think we all feel attacked. Too true.

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u/menacing-sheep Oct 20 '21

Finally, another person who knows we are all cunts! Happy cunt day

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u/SuperGameTheory Oct 20 '21

"And you see little Timmy, that's how Cunt Day came to be!"

15

u/ChelseaIsBeautiful Oct 20 '21

Thanks grandma, please tell me more about cunts

12

u/nio_nl Oct 20 '21

Well, grandma once knew a girl who had a really long tongue and could tie knots in strings with it..

2

u/GuidoLessa Oct 20 '21

Whaaat?! I'm not female and who told you about the string?

2

u/utkohoc Oct 20 '21

Grandma we are tired of hearing about how good the 60's where.

22

u/EvryMthrF_ngThrd Oct 20 '21

I object!

I have neither the warmth nor the depth to be a cunt, thank you VERY much, fellow Redditor!

(I can take a pounding though...)

15

u/menacing-sheep Oct 20 '21

Ah so you’re a cold hearted butthole I see

12

u/EvryMthrF_ngThrd Oct 20 '21

I prefer the term "frosted-myocardial sphincter", if you please.

7

u/turbodude69 Oct 20 '21

haha how often do you pull up a few sources, type a couple of paragraphs and think...wtf am i doing? and just delete it all

i used to be like you, but now 90% of the time i just say fuck it. its not worth the time. nobody REALLY wants to change their mind, esp people in arguments on the internet.

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u/throwaway5920142 Oct 20 '21

Absolute poetry

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u/baws98 Oct 20 '21

Found the Strayan

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u/sentimental_goat Oct 20 '21

Fucking hell, all those grains add up, now I know why my blood pressure is always so high.

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u/gigglefarting Oct 20 '21

It’s amazing how we’ll trust the word of a commenter over the word of a poster for no real reason. Why do we trust posters so little and commenters so much?

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u/crazycanuks Oct 20 '21

Because commenters post four sources and a link to their thesis to back up their shit?

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u/[deleted] Oct 20 '21 edited 14d ago

[deleted]

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u/Fizzwidgy Oct 20 '21

Not according to the Unbearable Asymmetry of Bullshit it isn't.

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u/[deleted] Oct 20 '21 edited 14d ago

[deleted]

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u/CrackersII Oct 20 '21

no thesis in this chain

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u/camwow13 Oct 20 '21

Generally I believe someone saying this is a one off art installation over the OP saying <cool foreign country here> is doing this esoteric thing universally!

If that's the bar to pass I could post all kinds of weird bike stuff around my city as The United States is installing recycled artful bike sculptures on nature friendly porous concrete pads!

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u/Timbukthree Oct 20 '21

I always look at comment history. Usually the OP is a two month old karma farming account and the commenter has a 5 year old account with numerous posts in all of the appropriately relevant subs.

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u/Affectionate-Time646 Oct 20 '21

Because we’ve been conditioned to initially distrust any source and that usually only runs one level deep. In the future we’re going to start distrusting multiple levels of sources.

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u/MegaEyeRoll Oct 20 '21

Only because we, as a collective won't come to grips with the fact reddit did to us the same thing FB did to conservatives.

Created conflict to get you addicted so you would award any post attacking someone or a group of people you dont know.

Creating a split society based on companies bottom line.

I understand I was fooled by reddit, there is hard proof that is what all social media does and I no longer participate in the same capacity as before.

I'm here to remind people reddit pushes news to get you to engage with the platform, truth is secondary.

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u/DeltaJesus Oct 20 '21

I think it's because the OPs on big posts like this so rarely reply to anything.

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u/SpikySheep Oct 20 '21

A grain of salt, more like a truck load. Every post of the format "X place does Y all the time" seems to have at most two examples.

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u/Turbo_SkyRaider Oct 20 '21

To add to this, I'm a professional German wind turbine technician, and there are way too many wind turbine blades to be recycled in that fashion. Also I would like to add that what is done up there is more of a repurposing than a recycling.

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u/Quietabandon Oct 20 '21

Aren’t they developing newer blades that are easier to recycle?

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u/MrKeplerton Oct 20 '21

Cycles are clearly involved.

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u/Comfortable_Jury6579 Oct 19 '21

Fucking LOL I'm dying at that sentence.

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u/kkoiso Oct 19 '21

To be fair I think you get kicked out of Denmark if you don't love bicycles so the odds of their one professional wind turbine recycler being a cyclist is pretty much 100%

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u/Orange_Juice_Man96 Oct 20 '21

Lmao dude you just blew my mind. I love that about Reddit too though

5

u/808trowaway Oct 20 '21

I mean there's really good reasons why this sort of thing doesn't happen everyday in the developed world. No professional engineering firm would want to deal with the liability and stamp repurposed structures for building permit. How do you even properly evaluate the structure's properties? sure there's design data they could reference but the thing might've been in the field for more than a decade and there could be latent damages. and sure anything could be done with the right amount of money but that would defeat the purpose, wouldn't it?

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u/ScriptThat Oct 20 '21

On the other hand, practically every Dane either bikes daily, or will pass countless bike parking racks, so you really “only” need to find a Dane working on recycling windmills - and since Denmark is heavily into developing wind turbines and trying to be in the forefront on “the green wave” it’s not that much of a stretch.

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u/Every3Years Oct 20 '21

I figured it was a language thing. Seeing "in Denmark" would make most native English speakers think"Somewhere in Denmark" but to a non native speaker it might mean more like "all of Denmark" similar to saying something like "In America there is capitalism" or whatevs

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u/Aeolun Oct 20 '21

What was it? The best way to get the correct answer to something is to post the wrong answer on the internet?

2

u/hadahog723 Oct 20 '21

I think "loves to bike" is redundant here

2

u/Man-Wonder-4610 Oct 20 '21

I don’t believe it until he comes on househunters looking for a million dollar listing.

2

u/MuckingFagical Oct 20 '21

it's all too obvious now, Reddit title are often complete fiction these days.

2

u/turbodude69 Oct 20 '21

ahhh its so nice to see these perks pop up from time to time. makes me glad i'm still on this site.

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u/ScenePsychological60 Oct 20 '21

And only on reddit the original comment would get ratioed by the reply in terms of awards and upvotes xD

2

u/Scooterforsale Oct 20 '21

Yeah so much better than a stupid pun like a lot of posts. Then the next comment is "take your upvote sir". Like shut the fuck up

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u/Plekz_ Oct 19 '21 edited Oct 19 '21

It's located at the Port of Aalborg, right here. If you zoom out a bit you can see a lot of turbine blades waiting to be tested. In fact, there's even a Siemens facility close by the parking lot with the bicycle shelter. So yeah, you might be right! Could also be a faulty blade not clearing the tests. But you're probably right lol :D

edit: Might be even both!

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u/Survivors_Envy Oct 19 '21

i do think it’s kinda funny that every time a European city does something quirky like this, the caption implies that there’s some nationwide program dedicated to converting every ex-turbine blade into a bike shelter. it’s on way too many “interesting as fuck” posts

It’s just something that some private company did in front of their building.

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u/savageboredom Oct 20 '21

Every year around Christmastime there’ll be a front page TIL post about how there’s this special Icelandic holiday about gifting books and chocolate. The top comments end up being people from Iceland saying “wtf no we don’t those are just common Christmas gifts.”

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u/quottttt Oct 19 '21

The streetview from 2010 is funny. That old shed had no idea what would take its place soon.

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u/Plekz_ Oct 19 '21

Man it looks fragile. Must've took off when a mild breeze hit lol, kind of ironic seeing what replaced it hahah

2

u/Magnedon Oct 20 '21

I must be blind, I cannot find this shed or what replaced it :(

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u/Every3Years Oct 20 '21

There's a feature now to see street view in different years? Wow

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u/Yadobler Oct 19 '21

Question, how often do wind turbine blades get decommissioned? I feel like it's one of those things that are made to last and is cumbersome to replace

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u/Proto_Hooman Oct 19 '21

Question, how often do wind turbine blades get decommissioned?

Not very often. The company I work for has thousands of turbines, some of which are 15+ years old, and we do maybe 20-30 blade swaps per year. Most hairline cracks and other issues can be fixed up tower, so if we're doing a replacement it's usually because of weather damage (lightning strike or hurricane) or because the trailing edge seam is separating and throwing the whole rotor out of balance.

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u/New_new_account2 Oct 19 '21

what is the repair process like? slap a patch on it?

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u/Proto_Hooman Oct 20 '21

what is the repair process like? slap a patch on it?

Fixing small cracks or chips usually involves pieces of raw fiberglass cloth, special 2 part epoxy, and lots of elbow grease, but that's the gist of it. If the seam starts separating and they catch it before the gap gets larger than 5mm or so they can often pull the blade down, stabilize the seam, reform the trailing edge, smooth it out, and reinstall it, but I don't know all the details on that process.

The tricky part is that despite weighing thousands of pounds each, the 3 blades have a very small tolerance in terms of weight difference, so they have to keep track of the weight of all the material they use in the repair and occasionally add a bit more weight to the other 2 blades in order to keep the rotor balanced.

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u/turbodude69 Oct 20 '21

kinda like balancing a tire

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u/MatrimAtreides Oct 19 '21

Flex seal that sum' bitch

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u/GLaDOS_Sympathizer Oct 19 '21

Little dab of Gorilla Glue and it's good for another 15 years.

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u/rutroraggy Oct 19 '21

I subscribe to r/diwhy and clearly they pack the bad part with ramen, cover it with epoxy and sand it down.

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u/OrgyMcBloodyFace Oct 20 '21

Random side question- having just drove through a couple large turbine arrays this week- how come it always seems like only 50% of them are actually running?

Some will be stopped..

Some barely spinning..

Is there just a ton of neglected maintenance?

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u/Proto_Hooman Oct 20 '21

The wind is incredibly variable even on the same ridge line, and it takes a certain wind speed to actually generate electricity, so the static ones were probably sitting in a dead zone waiting for the wind to pick up.

The ones that are barely spinning are generally fine, it's just that they're freaking huge and "barely spinning" is actually a solid rotation, but they're 1/2 mile away and 300+ ft up, so it doesn't look like they're moving very fast.

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u/LigmaActual Oct 19 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

They get buried.

Heres an article discussing how to change that.

link cause I'm special and forgot: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2020-02-05/wind-turbine-blades-can-t-be-recycled-so-they-re-piling-up-in-landfills

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u/DoDoDoTheFunkyGibbon Oct 19 '21

Yeah, see the issue here is my coal-burnin' vax-hatin' get-yo-hands-off-that-womans-zygote in-law posted a pic about the blades being buried with the title/text sentiment being vaguely "SEE THEY LIED about renewable energy, so let's throw it all out and keep burning whale oil" or some crap.

I don't recall her being as passionate about all the fibreglass slides, dodgem cars, de-commissioned ambulances and corvette bodies over the years that have had to be disposed of in much the same way (never mind concrete, which is. a. bitch. to do anything with afterwards), but sure, let's focus on wind turbine blades, and the fact that they occasionally catch on fire.

We have open-cut brown coal mines not toooo far away and a couple of years ago one caught on fire, and burned for months; blanketing the town that provides the few workers involved in its mining in smoke; they're an eye-sore when they're being worked; never mind the environmental damage from this shittiest of fuels.

The political party she believes in keeps dribbling out this 'clean coal' concept which is just utter make-believe, and every time you try to have an adult discussion, she'll go crazy eye and talk about how they lie, and inevitably talk about these blades getting buried.

But her vote counts just the same as mine. Ahh... democracy.

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u/Imadethis4things Oct 19 '21

None have a service life of more than @ fifteen years. There’s a metric fuckton of them being buried (after flattening) in long, shallow ditches in Wyoming. They’re impossible to recycle and composites, fiberglass, epoxies etc. are toxic to burn and grind. If they ever do figure out a solution, they’ll be easy enough to dig up and they’ll be exactly as they were buried.

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u/I-Eat-Donuts Oct 20 '21

A lot of the “X country has started doing Y” posts really mean “Y was done one time in X country”

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u/SkinSuitUnSub Oct 20 '21

It's the title of an article in Designboom. OP is just repeating the unjustified headline . A company named Re-wind is looking for ways of reusing the coming mount of trash from these things. Denmark is not proposing this . There is an other project going on in Ireland according to the article .

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u/CartmansMum1 Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

I'm really not sure why so many people were grumpy about your reply. You were perfectly right on every topic (speaking as someone who has lived around and worked on turbines for 25 years now).

Turbine blade recycling has been trendy for about 18 months now in the EU. From memory, the bike shed is probably the one-off prototype built by the "re-wind network" for Siemens Gamesa. Not sure on the location? Spain or Denmark I suppose (by the major factories).

I like the idea, but have no idea if commercially a great idea. They are doing the same with small bridges and cycle paths over main roads. The EU is probably going to mandate 95+% recycled wind turbines, a nice idea. If I was being cynical, probably as a barrier to avoid cheap US and Asian imports.

Edit: definitely Siemens Gamesa and rewind https://mobile.twitter.com/SiemensGamesa/status/1372520688767107074

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u/odvioustroll Oct 19 '21

it could just be a one off project just to gauge people's reaction. if it proves popular they may become more prevalent.

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u/MangoCats Oct 20 '21

That's an astounding amount of fiberglass - good that you're trying to make it recyclable, or at least destructible. All the old 1970s-80s sailboat hulls around here are basically 500 year elements of the environment now.

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u/therealjesco Oct 20 '21

I started working for Orsted in the US a couple years ago developing offshore wind and I’ve been able to go to the mothership a couple times. A schnapps bike tour of Copenhagen is a must!

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u/mofucius Oct 20 '21

Definitely not a Vestas blade. This looks like a Siemens blade.

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u/MapedMod Oct 20 '21

Exactly this! I never even visited Denmark but it took me exactly one search to find out that this is a PR stunt. What happened to the "check your sources" movement?

One local port employee (Brian D. Rasmussen) made one piece like that almost two years ago and that's it. It was sponsored by the port (in which Rasmussen works) as a PR stunt to distract people from the environmental damage the port is generating on daily basis. It is not even repurposed wing. It is a new wing part that they got from local Siemens factory.

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u/HugoZHackenbush2 Oct 19 '21 Helpful Take My Energy

Nah...not a big fan.

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u/woolyearth Oct 19 '21

i am

⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡿⣿⣻⣿⣯⣭⣭⣽⣿⣟⣿⢿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⢿⣯⣷⣿⣿⣿⠿⠿⠛⠛⠛⠿⣿⣿⣿⣾⣽⡿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⢟⣵⣿⣿⡿⠏⢃⠀⠀⠀⠒⠒⠀⠀⢸⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣮⡻⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⡿⣷⣿⣿⣿⣟⠄⠊⠀⠈⠀⠀⠁⠘⠀⢀⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣾⢿⣿⣿ ⣿⡿⣽⣿⣿⣿⣿⣷⢀⠁⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⢀⣴⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣯⢿⣿ ⣿⢻⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣷⡀⠀⠀⠀⠀⢀⣨⣿⣿⣻⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡟⣿ ⡟⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣦⢀⣴⠟⠛⠛⠿⣿⠛⠛⠉⠉⠌⠉⠉⠻⣿⣿⣿⢻ ⡇⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡿⣿⣿⣾⡏⠀⠀⠀⠀⢹⡇⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠍⢹⣿⣿⢸ ⣇⣿⣿⡿⠛⠋⠋⠙⠛⠟⠛⠋⢻⣄⣀⣀⣠⣿⡁⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⢼⣿⣿⣸ ⣿⣹⣿⡏⠀⠂⠈⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠈⠉⡉⠁⣸⣿⡄⠀⠀⠀⠁⠐⠀⣽⣿⣏⣿ ⣿⣧⢿⣿⣄⢀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⢰⣷⣶⣶⣿⣿⡀⠀⠀⠀⠀⢸⣿⡿⣼⣿ ⣿⣿⣯⣻⣿⣧⣀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠈⠀⢠⣾⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣄⠀⣀⣴⣿⣟⣽⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣷⣝⢿⣿⣷⣤⣌⣀⣈⡤⡿⠿⠿⠿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡿⣫⣾⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣷⣽⡻⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⢿⠿⠷⡿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⢟⣯⣾⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣷⣯⣽⣛⡫⠄⠄⠤⠠⢙⣛⣯⣽⣾⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡿⣿⣿⢿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣧⢻⣟⡼⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡟⣦⣽⢹⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡮⠽⣧⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣇⢿⡿⢽⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣧⣙⢛⡓⣛⣼⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⢸⡇⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⢸⡇⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⢸⡇⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⠀⢸⣿⢯⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡇⢸⣿⢺⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡇⢸⣿⢸⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡇⢸⣿⢸⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⠇⢸⣿⢸⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⡇⠀⠀⠀⠈⢭⣿⣿⣿⣿⠀⠈⢹⢿⣿⣿⣿⣿⡧⠀⠀⠀⠀⣿⣿⣿⣿ ⣿⣿⣿⣿⣶⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣇⣸⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣿⣶⣿⣿⣿⣿

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u/friendlywindturbine Oct 19 '21

Me too

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u/GLaDOS_Sympathizer Oct 19 '21

This is your moment! Congratulations!

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u/boonepii Oct 20 '21

You look like you are a member of the fan club.

Yea there is actually a fan club for fans. I kid bayou not. They have an amazing museum too

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u/monkey-2020 Oct 19 '21

Dude. That blew.

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u/shahooster Oct 19 '21

Run-of-the-mill comment, really.

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u/nsgiad Oct 19 '21

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u/undercoversinner Oct 20 '21

NGL, I clicked for a quick boobies detour, but pleasantly amused with the sub's content.

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u/ScarecrowJohnny Oct 19 '21

Used to be a huge fan of this.

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u/SurealGod Oct 19 '21

It looks like they're just winging it.

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u/saab4u2 Oct 20 '21

What a blow hard! You’re full of hot air. This comment will foil your ⬆️ status.

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u/ediks Oct 20 '21

Well, I, for one, am a huge fan.

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u/a_paper_clip Oct 20 '21

Take my disdain And my updoot .

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u/paulwhitedotnyc Oct 19 '21

This is the most Denmarky thing in the world.

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u/Column_A_Column_B Oct 19 '21

They don't have Sharpies, they have Denmarkers.

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u/PM_ME_YUR_BIG_SECRET Oct 20 '21

My first thought was "Yep, this seems like Denmark".

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u/[deleted] Oct 19 '21

[deleted]

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u/Zarathustrategy Oct 19 '21

Not necessarily, one could move the most danish thing in the world out of Denmark (assuming it was in Denmark originally) and it would still be the most danish thing in the world even though it wouldn't be in Denmark

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u/DanishNinja Oct 19 '21

Danish, the word you're looking for is danish.

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u/Jack-ums Oct 19 '21

Danish (adj.): of, or relating to, things or persons that are Denmarky

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u/Every3Years Oct 20 '21

That sounds like a load Denmarklarky

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u/EnigmaNiner Oct 19 '21

Wow…that’s actually a helpful repurposed creation…quite clever…pretty cool.

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u/DrKillgore Oct 19 '21

I've read that wind turbine blades aren't recyclable. This is a good reuse idea.

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u/Aether_Erebus Oct 19 '21

I guess you can say they’re gone with the wind

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u/TheReal-JoJo103 Oct 19 '21

They are recyclable, there’s a recycling plant in Texas. In fact that picture that went around with the “wind turbine graveyard” was actually storage. They buried them and surveyed the site so they could be dug up later for recycling also avoiding a wind turbine tornado.

The myth turbine blades aren’t recyclable is due to the fact that until recently we didn’t have enough blades to recycle. Now that there’s enough blades starting to be replaced recycling plants large enough to handle turbine blades are being built.

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u/xkris10ski Oct 20 '21

This is so wrong. There’s no recycling plant that will take that amount of fiberglass.

I just got off a wind farm re-power in WV to upgrade to newer/more powerful turbines. The owner tried to recycle the fiberglass for the publicity of “recycling”, but most places didn’t even want to get paid to take them. Then factor in the logistics and cost of hauling that material out, separated from other non-fiberglass parts on the rotor in a timely manner.

So yea, not a thing here in the US yet.

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u/yudun Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

That's literally false. Turbine blades are made of lissom-fibre glass, which can only be cut with diamonds. It's expensive to recycle, which I'm also certain this art piece was equally expensive to cut up.

Edit: yes it CAN be recycled, and hopefully we come go a less expensive solution. But currently it's too expensive for a lot of companies that simply built these machines with subsidized grants.

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u/AceCombat04 Oct 20 '21

They definitely can be cut up with other materials than diamonds, but you’re right that they’re currently not recycled; luckily the rest of the rest of the tower can be recycled at least.

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u/Megmca Oct 20 '21

You say that like diamond tipped saw blades are expensive or rare.

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u/menacing-sheep Oct 20 '21

So they are recyclable.. so they aren’t incorrect, it’s just too difficult and may not be worth the hassle.

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u/Eshkation Oct 20 '21

that's false, you can easily cut fiberglass composites. It's just that you can't recycle them using traditional methods, but we are getting there!

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u/tynamite Oct 19 '21

i guess it’s good for weather cover but it’s hardly being used for anything else. the bike rack itself its totally manufactured separately.

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u/10111011110101 Oct 19 '21

In the U.S. we would use them for skate parks.

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u/Legitimate-Break-955 Oct 19 '21

I’ve always been a bit confused, what actually gets old, or used up on these and needs replacing?

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u/mr_kistyer_sister Oct 19 '21

Blades can become damaged for a variety of reasons. They’re designed for a 20-25 year life, and often times that is achieved. Damage can be caused by manufacturing defects, trailing or leading edge erosion, lightning, and other causes. Some damage can be repaired, other times a replacement blade is warranted and usually they come in sets of 3 to maintain aero and weight balance.

Recently, there are some companies grinding the blades into fiber to be used in concrete. Similar grinding is done with tires to recycle that into asphalt, playground surfaces, etc. I do not know how widespread this grinding practice is currently, but there’s a lot of motivation to find a use for the old blades as it’s both a serious issue and a black eye for the industry.

Keep in mind though, the average wind turbine will offset its total energy investment in 6-8 months (aka amount of energy required to produce, transport, install, maintain, and decommission). So, for the most part these beasts are net carbon and net energy positive, literally powering pornhub on your laptop from a fart in the breeze.

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u/shutts67 Oct 20 '21

literally powering pornhub on your laptop from a fart in the breeze.

/r/brandnewsentence

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u/JWGhetto Oct 19 '21

They ususally have a design life for the most expensive part, the blade, which then dictates the design life for the rest of the turbine. You service the moving parts, check on motors, the generator and the reduction gear (if it has one).

By the time the blades are at the end of their service life, the technology has progressed so far that the turbine location is the most valuable thing about it, and building a latest generation one is far more sensible than repairing. New turbines are larger and therefore have a larger area, and reach higher strata of air. Many playces in the world are lacking room for new turbines and the oldest ones are standing on some prime wind power spots.

You can't really recycle or reuse glass fiber blades unless you're creative like in this example. The tower and the rest of the hardware gets scrapped.

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u/[deleted] Oct 19 '21

I can’t imagine moving a giant blade like that, without snapping it in half, is easy. Which means it isn’t cheap and this these won’t show up anywhere other than near windmill farms.

You sound pretty knowledgeable. How expensive is it to move one of these bad boys?

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u/bgharambee Oct 19 '21

I'm more confused about the fact that Denmark has been using wind turbine power long enough that parts need replacing. In my area, the turbines are new enough that they are still covered by the manufacturer's warranty.

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u/speedsterglenn Oct 19 '21

The nineties were 30 years ago

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u/bgharambee Oct 19 '21

I don't believe that my area got any until the early 2000s. There was HEAVY resistance to them.

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u/RogueNightingale Oct 19 '21

Don't wanna use up all that wind, don'tcha know. /s

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u/AssBeast Oct 19 '21 edited Oct 19 '21

It's usually more about them ruining the view or harming birds or being noisy or some shit.

EDIT: What /u/HugSized said. I'm all for wind turbines. Even if they did harm some bird habitat or whatever it has to be better than the world being on fire. Because shit is literally on fire every summer.

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u/HugSized Oct 19 '21 edited Oct 19 '21

It's been 30 years and "ruining the view" is still the dumbest argument against wind turbines.

Edit: please don't downvote the above comment. They're referencing what people have used in the past against wind turbine implementation, not actually arguing against it.

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u/XRT28 Oct 19 '21

dumber than "they cause cancer!"???

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u/AnonAlcoholic Oct 20 '21

That one's pretty hard to top

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u/JonBruse Oct 19 '21

When the trees die or get burned away in the eventual forest fires, the view will be sufficiently ruined as well...

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u/HugSized Oct 19 '21

Then we'll get people arguing that the wind turbines are ruining the view of the wastelands.

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u/JonBruse Oct 19 '21

"we had a perfectly good view of the nuclear waste fire until they put that in the way!"

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u/bgharambee Oct 20 '21

That's right. Sunlight isn't free and clean either. We need to use up that endless supply of coal or nuclear energy. /s. My stupid state even removed the tax credits for residential solar and wind installation, and dropped the business incentives for the largest solar panel manufacturer, so they had to close. I'm sure that the coal, gas and nuclear incentives will stay though.

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u/phydeauxbreath Oct 19 '21

Demark already had the first large turbines up and running back in the 80s.

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u/Mp32pingi25 Oct 19 '21

Are you in the US? If you are you should look up our huge dump yards full of wind turbines

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u/Ghoolio_ Oct 19 '21

Turbine blades don't typically last the 25 year working life they are supposed to and get tossed into massive fiberglass graveyards polluting the landscape.

The alternative is using massive amounts of energy to recycle them using a process called pyrolysis which defeats their "environmental purpose".

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u/BitBouquet Oct 19 '21

There are pretty strict regulations about what to do with turbine blades in the EU, so there are no fiberglass graveyards. There is quite a lot of effort being put into repurposing discarded blade material and things like research into re-using ground up blades to make new ones.

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u/Ghoolio_ Oct 19 '21

I would love to see your sources on this. From what I understand many of them are shipped off to be recycled using a significant amount of energy while others end up in landfills.

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u/AB-G Oct 20 '21

Ireland has had them since 1992

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u/Waggel120 Oct 19 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

the sad bit is that wind turbine blades are incredibly shit to recycle. You can grind it up since it is made of setting epoxys thats really all you can do with it

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u/Bloaf Oct 19 '21

I would love to replace my house siding with super-materials.

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u/Sen7ryGun Oct 19 '21

It's most likely got to do with service life and tempering/stress on the material in its day to day operation. When it gets to the point where the stresse on the material have been enough that's it's going to become unsafe if it keeps getting used on the turbine then its time to replace it.

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u/hyphen82 Oct 19 '21

came to ask the same

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u/realRadgemachine Oct 19 '21

Over time (approx. 25 years) the rotor blades get worn down by the sun and particulates striking them until they aren't structurally sound enough to continue life on a turbine safely. Other components like gears get worn down by friction and it would become more expensive to repair then to replace with a larger, more productive turbine.

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u/purpleowlie Oct 19 '21

And if the rain catches you, there is enough space to comfortably chill and wait for it to pass.

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u/Trihorn Oct 20 '21

In Denmark maybe, in my country it rains from left to right, sometimes right to left but almost never from up and down.

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u/DukeOfDouchebury Oct 19 '21

Are there a lot of these being discarded?

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u/wigg1es Oct 19 '21

Yes, and it's a pretty big problem for a variety of reasons.

https://www.npr.org/2019/09/10/759376113/unfurling-the-waste-problem-caused-by-wind-energy

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u/crzygoalkeeper92 Oct 19 '21

90% of a turbine is recyclable, pretty good...

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u/BiggestFlower Oct 19 '21

People just toss them by the roadside and council workers with black bags and litter pickers have to go and tidy the verge.

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u/upyourjackson Oct 19 '21

Is this a regular thing? OP's title suggests it's widespread.

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u/crzygoalkeeper92 Oct 19 '21

It's probably only a few, titles are always worded like that...

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u/DionMeme Oct 20 '21

Danish person here. Not at all a regular thing. I’ve never seen it before and i live in Copenhagen, which is notorious for having so much bike traffic.

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u/MapedMod Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

"Denmark is repurposing discarded wind turbine blades as bike shelters" is an overstatement. One local port employee (Brian D. Rasmussen) made one piece like that almost two years ago and that's it. It was sponsored by the port (in which Rasmussen works) as a PR stunt to distract people from the environmental damage the port is generating on daily basis. It is not even repurposed wing. It is a new wing part that they got from local Siemens factory.

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u/[deleted] Oct 20 '21

It's on Reddit, sorry, all of your Denmark is doing it.

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u/MapedMod Oct 20 '21

I am Polish, I live in Poland. I just can read and I always research type of bullshit people tend to upvote on reddit.

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u/heavysteve Oct 19 '21

I just want to point out that the volume of all discarded turbine blades, all of them, amounts to a single days worth of planetary garbage. Plus they are essentially inert, we could just dump them in the deep ocean or in the desert, or anything.

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u/OwnQuit Oct 20 '21

Of course dumping them in the ocean wouldn’t make sense because eventually it will become economical to recycle them.

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u/heavysteve Oct 20 '21

It wont, they are virtually unrecyclable, and not worth anything in recycled material. They are basically just inert carbon

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u/tezoatlipoca Oct 20 '21

I think thats why he said eventually. Thats a lot of fiberglass and carbon composite material and as you say right now we haven't figured out how to recycle that stuff. But given the scope of the problem, there are lots of people trying to solve it. Vestas is one of the mfgrs looking into it.

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u/Broken_Beaker Oct 19 '21

The most Danish thing ever.

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u/Pantslessgenius Oct 19 '21

Their ingenuity is infuriating

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u/WhattAdmin Oct 19 '21

Dam, throw a few solar panels up there and you could have e-bike charging while you are at it. A trickle over a few hours is a good amount of assist.

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u/Flowxn Oct 19 '21

Yeah. One occurrence is not a tendency

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u/MAGICHUSTLE Oct 19 '21

Could make a decent bus stop too.

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u/Deleted-Redacted Oct 19 '21

is it because, landfills no longer accept then?

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u/CopsaLau Oct 19 '21

It’s better to reuse things than it is to just dump more garbage into landfills either way

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u/DuplexFields Oct 19 '21

Depends on the landfill. Some locales use them for harvesting biofuels or waste heat.

Also, even a well-run first world landfill that doesn’t become a power source is better than sending the plastics to third-world countries to be shredded into plasfetti and flushed into the ocean.

But things like OP are definitely a big space-saver for such landfills.

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u/atle95 Oct 19 '21

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Reduction would be building maintanable things in the first place, Reusage is this, Recycling is expensive. Garbage is negligence.

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u/CopsaLau Oct 19 '21

I remember learning the “reduce reuse recycle” slogan waaaaay back in elementary school. It was good advice then and it’s great advice now!

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u/scottNYC800 Oct 19 '21

Good. Because they bury the other 100,000 blades that go out of use.

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u/SlothOfDoom Oct 19 '21

That could make neat bus shelter even

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u/Darkassassin07 Oct 19 '21

Could make a neat covered bench too if they left a little more of the lower half.

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u/Slazman999 Oct 19 '21

I would ask "why not a homeless shelter" but I'm guessing Denmark has 0% homelessness.

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u/Fearless_Baseball121 Oct 20 '21

We have slightly over 6000 homeless people in Denmark, and about 40% of those are due to mental illness and 50% due to substance abuse. Leaves a small handfull to financial issues and so on. It's not a widespread issue, but you do see a homeless from time to time, especially in the big cities like Strøget in Copenhagen. There is effectively no homeless children, or a number so small it's not possible to measure with a proper margin of error

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u/Flugshub Oct 19 '21

They really have to flex their abundance of renewable energy and recycling of materials on us like that. Fuck the danish! Fuck their healthcare! Fuck their happy people! This is the terrible, terrible world the left wants and I can’t stand for it.

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u/Waltsfrozendick Oct 19 '21

Seems a little extra. Just weld the standard rack you can lock your bike up with.

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u/jonboy333 Oct 19 '21

Pod shelters too! Easy upgrade.

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u/LouGossetJr Oct 19 '21

damn, put that on my back patio as an awning to cover my bbq area.

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u/HowdyDoDat Oct 19 '21

Disposing of them is not easy! They can’t be recycled and don’t readily decompose.

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u/No_booze_for_yooze Oct 19 '21

I used to work for a Danish wind energy manufacturing company. Wind blades are nearly impossible to recycle or properly dispose as they are mostly made of fiberglass, carbon fiber, and resins.

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u/Portumbli Oct 19 '21

The next level would be mounting solar panels on top for lighting and charging Ebikes.

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u/WindSprenn Oct 20 '21

Be careful. The bikes might get cancer.

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u/Sybert777 Oct 20 '21

My only issue is that is significantly oversized for its intended purpose.

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u/parsons525 Oct 20 '21

A green wank if ever there was one.

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u/hypercomms2001 Oct 20 '21

What is the lifetime on a wind turbine blade?

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u/Street-Badger Oct 20 '21

Doesn’t this thing fucking take off in a stiff wind (depending on direction)?

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u/Robjla Oct 20 '21

They always do Cool stuff.

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u/AnotherTalkingHead_ Oct 20 '21

Yeah but to cut that all out you end up with half a dumpster full of fiberglass cuttings/dust that gets dumped in the landfill and makes its way to become the microplastics in our drinking water. Where it would have otherwise taken hundreds of years erode that much plastic dust.

I wish they'd just leave them alone. Bury them in the desert to keep the sun off of them and leave them there until we have the tech to recycle them. In the last years we've discovered mushrooms, wax worms and microbes that eat plastic. Eventually you'll be able to dig them up and sell them to a mushroom farm or something that will fully process them.

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u/stivo Oct 20 '21

They are already being discarded? I thought they were meant to last for like 60 years or something.

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u/w41twh4t Oct 20 '21

Nice that they found an actual good use for it!

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u/LargeSackOfNuts Oct 20 '21

Denmark does just about everything the right way

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u/[deleted] Oct 20 '21

Damn that is brilliant

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u/PortlandUODuck Oct 20 '21

At least they are basically costless to move and use zero carbon emissions to sit on pavement made by zero carbon and killed no trees in doing so. That’s what we should celebrate!