Following in the footsteps of Delaware, New Jersey is planning a 350 megawatt offshore wind farm a couple of miles off the coast. It's an exciting project for two reasons. First, because the billion dollar project is going far enough offshore that wind speeds will be fairly constant and not visible to beach-goers. And second because, despite being built in 100m deep water, the project is still economically viable.
This is a big deal for offshore wind. Once you can build in water more than a mile and a half offshore, a lot of new options get put on the table.
In the North East U.S. there has been a huge amount of opposition to wind farms that are easy to see. So simply moving the turbines so far offshore that they can't be seen makes the farms much easier to permit. But it's also simply because there's a lot more sea bottom out there, with much more constant wind flow out there than there is closer to shore.
So while this wind project, slated to be completed in 2013, is a big deal...it's a bigger deal that it will likely usher in hundreds more wind projects just like it. And as soon as floating turbines (which can be anchored in water almost a half-mile deep) will put that number in the thousands.
written by Steve N. Lee, October 07, 2008
written by Marcos Carot Collins, October 08, 2008
written by ahmad mourtada, October 10, 2008
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