Wind Win

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) speaks at a news conference on the boardwalk in Point Pleasant Beach, N.J., in 2018 before signing a bill banning offshore oil and gas drilling. (Wayne Parry/AP)

Alternative energy sources are the requirement for the future. We can only hope that positive leadership actions such as this aren’t vetoed by an administration that would like to keep progressive plans as a thing of the past.

New Jersey aims to lead nation in offshore wind. So it’s building the biggest turbine port in the country.

Gov. Phil Murphy (D) said his state will build the country’s first port dedicated to assembling the turbines that will go up not just in New Jersey but across the Eastern Seaboard.

New Jersey wants to be known for more than just its shores and casinos.

It aims to be the hub of the nation’s nascent offshore wind energy industry.

On Tuesday, Gov. Phil Murphy (D) is set to announce the construction of what he calls the country’s first port dedicated to constructing the colossal turbines that may one day dot the East Coast horizon as Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states rush to build more renewable energy.

For New Jersey, it is about more than just tackling climate change. Just as Texas is the de facto capital of the U.S. oil and gas industry, New Jersey wants to be an economic engine for offshore wind.

“We have a huge opportunity,” said Tim Sullivan, chief executive of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority. “Somebody’s going to get to be the Houston of American offshore wind.”

To make sure New Jersey plays that role, the state government is planning to turn 30 acres along the Eastern Shore of the Delaware River 20 miles south of Wilmington, Del., into a staging area for assembling the massive turbines. Taller than 800 feet, the turbines will tower higher than the Washington Monument.

State leaders are also hoping to coax factories to the rural area, too, and have set aside 25 acres for potential turbine part manufacturers. They aim to start construction next year and launch operations by 2024. Another 160 acres will be available for future development.

“We’ll be able to be the focal point for the industry in this part of the country,” Murphy said in an interview.

The port is part of the state’s broader plan to get all of its electricity from clean energy by the middle of the century. New Jersey, already one of the nation’s fastest-warming places, wants to generate 7,500 megawatts from offshore wind by 2035 — enough to power half of New Jersey’s homes.

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Wind Powering 590,000 Homes

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 Drone footage shows world’s largest offshore windfarm – video

Thanks to the Guardian for this news about harnessing wind at a record scale:

World’s largest offshore windfarm opens off Cumbrian coast

Walney Extension will power 590,000 homes amid fears Brexit could stifle growth

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Guardian Graphic | Source: Renewable

The world’s biggest offshore windfarm has officially opened in the Irish Sea, amid warnings that Brexit could increase costs for future projects.

Walney Extension, off the Cumbrian coast, spans an area the size of 20,000 football pitches and has a capacity of 659 megawatts, enough to power the equivalent of 590,000 homes.

The project is a sign of how dramatically wind technology has progressed in the past five years since the previous biggest, the London Array, was finished.

The new windfarm uses less than half the number of turbines but is more powerful.

Matthew Wright, the UK managing director of Danish energy firm Ørsted, the project’s developer, said: “It’s another benchmark in terms of the scale. This – bigger turbines, with fewer positions and a bit further out – is really the shape of projects going forward.” Continue reading

Turbines, Bigger & Better

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Prototype wind turbines whirl at a testing site in Osterild, near the northern end of Denmark’s Jutland peninsula. By Rasmus Degnbol

Thanks to the New York Times for this reminder that, in spite of what headlines often lead us to believe, progress is out there on as many fronts as we care to look to:

How Windmills as Wide as Jumbo Jets
Are Making Clean Energy Mainstream

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Blades for wind turbines lie outside a factory, waiting to be transported to wind farms.By Rasmus Degnbol

OSTERILD, Denmark — At the northern end of Denmark’s Jutland peninsula, the wind blows so hard that rows of trees grow in one direction, like gnarled flags.

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Technicians reach the roof of these enormous wind turbines either via an internal elevator or, if the turbine is installed offshore, by helicopters that lower them into the fenced-off area.By Rasmus Degnbol

The relentless weather over this long strip of farmland, bogs and mud flats — and the real-world laboratory it provides — has given the country a leading role in transforming wind power into a viable source of clean energy.

After energy prices spiked during the 1973 oil crisis, entrepreneurs began building small turbines to sell here. “It started out as an interest in providing power for my parents’ farm,” said Henrik Stiesdal, who designed and built early prototypes with a blacksmith partner. Continue reading

Increasing China’s Wind Power Production

Dabancheng wind farm in China’s Xinjiang province (Source: Bob Sacha/Corbis, via Dailytech.com)

Wind power, as we’ve written before, has great potential as an alternative energy source, although there are certain issues to take into account. China is installing the most new wind turbines per year, but has yet to produce the most wind-generated electricity given barriers by the coal industry. Prachi Patel reports for Conservation Magazine:

China is the world’s top wind energy installer. The country’s wind installations have a capacity of generating 145 Gigawatts, twice that of the United States and about a third of the world’s total wind power. Yet the country produces less wind electricity than the US. Last month, researchers from Harvard University and Tsinghua University argued in the journal Nature Energy that this underperformance is due to deliberate favoring of coal over wind by grid operators, delays in connecting new wind farms to the grid, and sub-par equipment.

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More (Offshore) Power to You, Germany

Germany is set to overtake the UK as the biggest installer of offshore wind globally, Denmark comes behind the UK by capacity, followed by Belgium and China PHOTO: Reuters/Fabian Bimmer

Germany is set to overtake the UK as the biggest installer of offshore wind globally. Denmark comes behind the UK by capacity, followed by Belgium and China. PHOTO: Reuters/Fabian Bimmer

We first discussed wind energy, as a viable resource to power the world’s needs, almost three years ago. Prior to that and in the time hence, Germany has done much about it. The country has chalked out a plan to replace nuclear power plants with offshore wind farms in a bid to use renewable energy round-the-clock. Importantly, the country is sticking to its plan. Above all, it is building on it.

Germany has hugely ambitious green goals. Five years ago it set a goal to produce 18% of its energy from renewables by 2020 (latest figures show it having reached 12.4%). The country also wants to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2020, compared with 1990 levels, and by 80% by 2050. The transformation is knows as the Energiewende—literally “energy turn.”

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