The Winds of Change

Since fossil fuels are heating up the earth, the race is on to develop cool alternatives

Over the Columbia River, on a high desert ridge, the world's largest wind farm sprawls across 50 sq. mi. of Oregon and Washington. When the last of its 460 turbines are installed, this postmodern power plant will offer clean electricity to 70,000 homes and businesses. Every month hundreds of tourists come to gawk at its fiber-glass blades, twirling with balletic grace atop 160-ft. poles. "People are in awe of wind power," says Anne Walsh, community-relations manager of the Stateline Energy Center.

And guess what? Wind is becoming more than a quixotic sideshow. It's now the world's fastest growing power source--a high-tech...

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