Like it or not, when we talk about alternative energy today, we're talking about wind turbines. Every type of energy has the same upside: providing the power we need to run our economies and our lives. But each has its unique downside. In the case of wind turbines, there are a few. They are a blight to landscape or seascape. They shred birds that are sucked into their blades (5,000 a year in one California wind farm). They are expensive and difficult to maintain. But they're not going away, and in fact they are becoming more commonplace. Wind turbines generated 59,000 megawatts of power around the world last year, more than quadruple the amount in 1999. The World Wind Energy Association estimates that figure will more than double again by 2010. That kind of growth usually presents interesting opportunities for investors. But traders in the U.S. will find it frustrating to get in on it. The main reason is the mere absence of stocks available for U.S. investors. The obvious choice would be GE Wind, the biggest American manufacturer of wind turbines, which posted revenue above $2 billion in 2005, more than tripling from 2004. But impressive as that is, GE Wind only makes up about 1.5% of General Electric's ( GE) $150 billion in revenue last year. There may be a lot of good reasons to hold GE's stock, but GE Wind has to be pretty far down the list. Then there are the smaller U.S. based wind-energy companies, such as U.S. Wind Farming ( USWF) or Western Wind Energy ( WNDEF). But they offer little interest to most investors. U.S. Wind Farming last traded at well under a penny on the pink sheets and had a nasty run-in with Securites and Exchange Commission officials last summer. Western Wind was trading at $1.66 and had no apparent revenue.