The dawn of a more robust era in offshore wind may be breaking, according to two recent reports on floating wind power that show long-inaccessible deepwater sites with some of the highest winds on Earth now appear to be within reach. One report, a polling result commissioned by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) at its annual conference in November, finds the sector to be already “winning the cost argument” based on simpler installation requirements. It projects electricity generation as low as $93 per megawatt-hour and focuses on construction of floating foundations as the main design challenge. That would be competitive with traditional offshore projects if floating wind reaches commercial-scale deployment in the 2020s.
New Jersey is in position to generate more power from offshore wind turbines over the next few years than neighboring states, according to a report released by an environmental group Monday. If every regulatory and financial hurdle are met, two major projects in New Jersey could produce 1,700 megawatts by 2020 outpacing Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Maryland, which also have large offshore plans, said the report by Environment America.
A new study estimates that $2.2 billion in benefits came from reduced greenhouse gas emissions and $5.2 billion from reductions in other air pollution for state renewable portfolio standard (RPS) policies operating in 2013.
Renewable portfolio standards have “sizable” impacts on U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, water use, job creation and the economy, two national laboratories say in a report released today. The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and National Renewable Energy Laboratory conclude that renewable portfolio standards in 29 states and the District of Columbia resulted in $2.2 billion in benefits from reduced greenhouse gas emissions, assuming a “midrange” scenario and a central value for the social cost of carbon.
TransCanada Corp sued the U.S government on Wednesday to reverse President Barack Obama’s rejection of the Keystone XLpipeline, and also plans to seek $15 billion in damages from a trade tribunal. TranCanada’s lawsuit in a federal court in Houston, Texas, called rejection of its permit to build the pipeline unconstitutional. In a separate action under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the company said the pipeline permit denial was “arbitrary and unjustified.”
In comparison, the United States is just beginning to invest in offshore wind energy, and is rapidly approaching the operational launch of its first commercial offshore wind farm. There is incredible potential for offshore wind development in the United States – the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has estimated the United States has over 4,000 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind potential, enough to power the country four times over.
Govs. Terry Branstad and Gina Raimondo will chair the coalition in 2016. The Governors’ Wind Energy Coalition has announced its new leadership for 2016. Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad will take over as chairman, while Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo will step in as vice chair.
The Governors’ Wind Energy Coalition has appointed Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad and Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo as the group’s new chair and vice chair, respectively, for the 2016 term. “I look forward to working with Governor Raimondo and our coalition colleagues to help the wind energy industry diversify our nation’s energy portfolio and drive economic development in our states,” says Branstad, who previously served as the coalition’s vice chair. “We will continue to share best practices across the states and work with federal leaders to deliver stability and predictability in supportive federal policies.”
This was a record-breaking year for rooftop solar power. It’s booming across the country. But as more homeowners make their own power, electric utilities are making less money and that’s shaking up their business model. Utilities in two states — California and Georgia — are handling the growth of solar in dramatically different ways.
The company that lets you compare air fares and translate foreign languages online wants to make it easier to weigh the costs and benefits of installing solar panels on household rooftops. Google is rolling out a new online service that quickly tallies up considerations of going solar and whether homeowners should consider buying or leasing photovoltaic panels costing thousands of dollars. Google’s Project Sunroof combines the eye-in-the-sky images behind Google Earth with calculations on how much shade trees cast over a rooftop, data on local weather patterns, industry pricing and available subsidies to arrive at its bottom line.