As an engineer, I have never thought of most "alternative energy" schemes as much more than curiosities suitable for the better-off to install in their back yards as conversation pieces. Here's some confirmation on the wind power front.
It seems that not only is wind power unreliable, it's unreliable on a nation wide, and sometimes trans-national basis. Also, those gigantic wind turbines require some base of input power to keep the innards in working order whether they're running or not, so when a large high-pressure feature moves across your wind farm, not only is the whole system becalmed, it becomes a net user of power from other sources. On top of that, the mega-watts you thought the wind would provide now need to be provided by some other means, so wind power only makes sense if you have the conventional generating capacity to replace it when it stops producing.
Texas has a large wind farm located in west Texas, and spliced into the state grid. I remember, not long ago, that there were brownouts in Texas when the west Texas wind stopped blowing for a couple of days. When someone proposes putting in a wind farm, be sure and ask if the proposed price includes a coal-fired plant of the same capacity to take over when the wind drops.
There's a fellow with a ranch, located along I-25 south of Castle Rock, who has a windmill on his property. When the wind blows, he probably powers his spread, and even has some power left over to sell to Excell Energy, which they are required to buy at retail rates, which the government has mandated. It works because he's on the grid, and has a 100% backup should his system fail. I have to wonder, though, how long it will take to pay off the investment in the system.