A personal quest to promote the use of wind energy and hydrogen technology in the Great Lakes area of the United States. The Great Lakes area is in a unique position to become an energy exporting region through these and other renewable energy technologies. *Update 2014: Just do it everywhere - Dan*
The US Conference of Mayors, which represents 1,400 mayors nationwide, has advanced a resolution encouraging cities to aim for 100% renewables by 2035. Columbia, S.C., Mayor Steve Benjamin said the resolution is "a message to the entire world that America is still at the table and we support a vision at 100% clean and renewable energy."
Pattern Development has acquired Wind Quarry's 103-megawatt Willow Creek project in South Dakota, according to the companies. "We are thrilled to acquire our first wind project in South Dakota and look forward to working with Wind Quarry and the local community to develop the Willow Creek Project, creating jobs, economic spending and a new source of energy in Butte County," said Pattern Energy President and CEO Mike Garland.
North Dakota has seen an increase in wind and transmission projects under the wind energy Production Tax Credit and more wind-related investments will likely take place before the credit expires in 2020, said state Rep. Mike Brandenburg. NextEra Energy is seeking approval for its Emmons-Logan Wind Energy Center in the state, which could feature up to 133 turbines and has a power purchase agreement with an electrical cooperative in Minnesota.
Dong Energy has inaugurated its 582-megawatt Gode Wind 1 and 2 offshore wind project off the coast of Germany in the German North Sea, according to Dong. The complex features 97 Siemens 6-MW offshore wind turbines.
WEB Aruba, a provider of water and electricity on the Caribbean island of Aruba, will use a microgrid from Swiss grid firm ABB to integrate more wind and solar capacity, according to the company. "This innovative microgrid solution will support the island of WEB Aruba to integrate more renewables and maintain reliability and efficiency of power supplies to meet increasing demand for electricity," said ABB Managing Director of Grid Automation Massimo Danieli.
Researchers from the Energy Department and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recently wrapped up a wind forecasting project in the 80-mile Columbia River Gorge between Washington and Oregon. Energy Department Meteorologist Joel Cline said that the team hopes to use the data to develop a computer model capable of accurately forecasting daily wind speeds anywhere in the country.
The offshore wind industry's need for government support mechanisms will dwindle as turbines increase in size, getting both taller and more efficient, said Dong Energy, EnBW and Vattenfall in an interview with Reuters. Executives from all three firms said they're working on taller, higher capacity megaturbine prototypes, including one from Dong that could fall in the range of 13 to 15 megawatts.
Mining firms in Canada and across North America are generating new revenue by repurposing old sites for wind and solar generation, said Ernst & Young Western Canada Market Leader Meghan Harris-Ngae. "There's a huge opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and also offset greenhouse gas emissions both for business, but also within a province," she said.
The US could become a global leader in energy production under the Trump administration, said Energy Secretary Rick Perry, adding that the government plans to prioritize clean energy as well as fossil fuels. "An energy-dominant America will export to markets around the world, increasing our global leadership and influence," he said.
May cooler heads prevail in debate over renewables' role in providing clean electricity
While articles in the academic journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences don't often provoke bitter fights on the pages of major newspapers, that was the case for an academic study about renewable energy published last week. Read more.
Criticism is so often nothing more than the eye garrulously denouncing the shape of the peephole that gives access to hidden treasure.
Djuna Barnes, writer and artist
These stories were selected and summarized by independent editors at SmartBrief Inc., not by AWEA's staff, and do not represent AWEA positions. They reflect the variety of daily coverage of American wind power.