The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released a new report yesterday showing progress for the U.S. offshore wind energy market in 2012, including the completion of two commercial lease auctions for federal Wind Energy Areas and a number of commercial-scale U.S. projects reaching an advanced stage of development. Further, the report highlights global trends toward building offshore turbines in deeper waters and using larger, more efficient turbines in offshore wind farms, increasing the amount of electricity delivered to consumers.
This year in Providence, Rhode Island, the American Wind Energy Association and the Offshore Wind Development Coalition hosted the Offshore WINDPOWER Expo. One of the unique aspects of this conference was the renewed focus on the value of offshore wind energy. Another aspect that was new to this conference was the focus on logistics – specifically ports, vessels and transmission capabilities. Several speakers and many attendees from various government agencies could not confirm their attendance until just a few days before the exposition. But, some people still were unable to attend in part because of sequestration and the reduction in available federal funds. With all the manufacturing, ship-building and offshore energy expertise here in the South, perhaps the conference organizers should look towards New Orleans or Jacksonville as potential conference locations.
The City of North Charleston proclaimed support for offshore wind energy at last night’s City Council meeting as Mayor Keith Summey presented a proclamation listing many benefits of wind energy and how the City is positioned to benefit from the industry’s further development. Some highlights of the proclamation include recognition that North Charleston is well [...]
This year, the American Wind Energy Association and the Offshore Wind Development Coalition are hosting their Offshore WINDPOWER conference in Providence, Rhode Island on October 22-23. This annual event usually draws about 1,000 participants from all over the world so they can “learn more about technological advancements, hear first-hand how the U.S. government is successfully advancing offshore energy development, and network with top-tier developers, government agency representatives, and many other industry leaders making offshore wind energy news.” If you’re working with the industry, or just interested in offshore wind energy, you should absolutely plan on attending this event. (Tip: Even though the conference officially starts on Oct. 22, you should really plan on arriving earlier on Oct. 21 to take advantage of the U.S. Offshore Wind Market and Supply Chain Workshop at 1PM and an evening reception later that day.)
The following is a guest post written by Jen Banks, Director of Operations for the Southeastern Coastal Wind Coalition originally posted here. The Southeastern states from Virginia to Florida are home to over 65 wind related manufacturing facilities that support thousands of wind energy jobs in the Southeast region. These supply chain facilities could expand [...]
It’s all about the sea breeze effect. During the summertime, as the sun beats down, the oceans and land absorb and radiate heat at different rates. As such, air over the lands tend to heat up quicker than air over water. The temperature difference between the land air (hot) and ocean air (cold) causes the ocean air to rush inland and fill the vacuum over land. The result is a sea breeze rushing inland in the hot summer afternoons. Simply put, offshore and nearshore wind farms can generate electricity by using the sea breeze effect to serve peak demands, including our air conditioners. Particularly for offshore wind, where costs are estimated to be higher than onshore wind farms, supplying high-value energy when its needed the most may help justify a higher price for those resources.
Last night, Charleston, South Carolina’s City Council passed a resolution in support of wind energy as an economic driver for our region. The resolution acknowledged that wind energy manufacturing currently employs nearly 3,000 South Carolinians and that there is a great opportunity for market growth. We applaud Charleston City Council for taking this symbolic step [...]
Yesterday, SACE hosted the first ever Wind Energy Day at the Georgia State Capitol. This event was sponsored by Senator Lester Jackson (D-Savannah). The first day of spring started with the senator speaking about the benefits of wind energy from the Senate floor and letting other Senators and gallery attendees know about the exciting presentations we had planned for the day. Senator Jackson also used this opportunity to give recognition to SACE and the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators (NCEL) for our participation in Wind Energy Day. Several days before Wind Energy Day, Senator Jackson introduced a resolution lauding the benefits of wind energy – a first of its kind in Georgia.
Things are moving in the realm of offshore wind energy in North Carolina. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) recently announced that it intends to prepare an environmental assessment for three large areas off of North Carolina’s coast in preparation for potential wind energy development and has asked for input on these areas. The environmental assessment (EA) will consider the environmental effects associated with the initial stages of site assessment and research leading up to wind farm development, for example geological and geophysical surveys and biological surveys.
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announced that it will be preparing an environmental assessment (EA) for a potential meteorological data collection facility offshore from Tybee Island, Georgia. The EA is the next step in advancing Southern Company’s potential plans for building meteorological tower and/or meteorological buoy to gather data to help determine the feasibility of [...]