Pumping Water with Wind at Villa Maria, Pennsylvania

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O’Donnell, Barbara
Master of Arts in Earth Literacy
Wind power, used as a source of energy for the sailing of ships, continues to be harnessed through the invention of windmills. Cooperating with nature to convert kinetic energy remains a viable choice for sustainable living. The project goal of pumping water from an old well by constructing a mechanical windmill includes research for using wind turbines for producing electricity. A report with recommendations will be submitted to the Sisters of the Humility of Mary leadership team. With an almost 14 billion year old narrative, humans are learning the cosmic story through empirical evidence and scientific understanding. The sun, Earth’s ultimate source of energy, and the wind, a form of solar power, provide abundantly for nature’s life systems. Evolutionary processes that stored solar energy in the form of coal, petroleum, and natural gas resulted from organic matter being heated, cooled, and compressed over eons of time. They are exhaustible and non-renewable elements. Referred to as fossil fuels, when burned they produce toxins and contaminants that pollute and diminish the quality of air, water, and soil. A deeper planetary consciousness enables a new way of thinking regarding advanced technologies of primary, renewable energies. Ecologically, wind is integral to an energy flow system that creates no carbon dioxide or other climate changing gases being strewn into the atmosphere, nor pollutants that settle in the soil and water. However, all human activity impacts the planet. Concerns are voiced about wind turbines affecting birds, bats, wildlife habitats, noise levels, and aesthetic views.