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Brandi Colander’s Blog

Offshore Wind Moving Forward in the US

Brandi Colander

Posted November 9, 2010 in Green Enterprise, Solving Global Warming

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This week, Maryland moved closer to advancing their offshore wind plans. Governor Martin O'Malley's administration announced the federal government's acceptance of planning recommendations to advance this renewable technology. The western edge of the proposed project is an estimated 10 nautical miles from Ocean City's coast and 27 nautical miles from the eastern edge's coast.

As the nation awaits a final decision on the docket before the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities regarding the cost effectiveness of the power purchase agreements for Cape Wind with National Grid, Maryland and Delaware are moving forward with the federal government in the offshore wind process.

Meanwhile, it is clear that the industry at large continues to expand. Siemens announced this week plans to increase their offshore wind services by providing maintenance for grid connections HelWin1 and BorWin2 in the North Sea for five years, as an initial pilot. Having received orders totally roughly 4800 MW for connecting offshore wind farms, the company is positioning themselves to sharpen their maintenance expertise. While this increase in the immediate future will only accommodate non-domestic offshore wind, it is clear that Siemens is well poised to service future domestic offshore wind projects.

Forbes has also taken note of the trend, acknowledging the success that the US has had in leading the globe in land based wind, but failing to currently have any offshore wind in operation. Things are changing. The federal government is engaged and appetites have peaked. This technology has been demonstrated to add immediate value abroad. Ensuring that these projects are properly sited taking into consideration the strength of the resource and the ecological and marine impact is critical to doing this well.

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Comments

Robbyn CandelariaNov 9 2010 09:50 PM

"Ensuring that these projects are properly sited taking into consideration the strength of the resource and the ecological and marine impact is critical to doing this well."

Brandi, thank you for making this important point. It is common sense that destroying natural areas to develop alternative energy sites is counterproductive. However, making it policy to use brownfield zones, abandoned military bases, landfills, and existing buildings as alt. energy sites will both recycle and preserve.

Reduce, Recycle, and Retrofit.

Robbyn CandelariaNov 9 2010 10:06 PM

p.s. After posting the previous comment, I found this article.

http://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2010/11/09-0

Jackson DanielsNov 10 2010 04:31 PM

I agree entirely with what Robbyn says. We should not be cutting off our nose to spite our face. Destroying areas of stunning natural beauty, such as the waters off Cape Cod do not make sense and is, indeed, counterproductive. The natural environment can be preserved and our renewable energy needs can be met if we would just be responsible with how we site these projects.

Kaseciu pildymasNov 11 2010 06:38 AM

p.s. After posting the previous comment, I found this article.
http://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2010/11/09-0, nice.

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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