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*
Tuesday, August 02, 2016
Mass. lawmakers approve target of 1.6 GW offshore wind by 2027
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Mass. lawmakers approve target of 1.6 GW offshore wind by 2027 | Analysis: Alliant, MidAmerican projects show nationwide shift toward wind | PTC, CPP are low-cost options for cutting emissions, says Berkshire exec
The Massachusetts legislature passed a bill that, if signed into law, would require utilities to sign power purchase agreements with 1.6 gigawatts of installed offshore wind capacity by July 2027. Dong Energy applauded the bill, adding that it is the first policy in the US to specifically target offshore wind development.
A pair of wind farms under development by Alliant Energy and MidAmerican Energy in Iowa that will have a combined capacity of 2,500 megawatts highlight a larger trend in the US as the nation shifts toward a clean energy economy powered by wind, according to this analysis. American Wind Energy Association Manager of Industry Data and Analysis John Hensley said that the wind energy Production Tax Credit makes wind an attractive option for utilities, especially while they can qualify for 100% of the full credit.
The wind energy Production Tax Credit and Clean Power Plan are two excellent and cost-effective options for cutting carbon emissions, said Cathy Woollums, chief environmental counsel at Berkshire Hathaway Energy. Woollums, who said she would prefer these options over a tax on carbon, added that Berkshire subsidiary MidAmerican Energy has begun expanding its wind portfolio to take advantage of the PTC.
Broadwind Energy is planning a $4 million, 30% expansion at its turbine-manufacturing facility in Abilene, Texas, according to the company. The company said that it plans to increase the plant's capacity to about 200 towers per year.
The Duke Energy Renewables Control Center in Charlotte, N.C., has grown to oversee more than 3,500 megawatts installed wind and solar capacity, according to the company. Duke Energy Renewables & Distributed Energy Technology President Rob Caldwell said that the center, which serves as Duke's hub of renewable energy operations in the US, has allowed the company to improve safety and boost performance for all of its clients.
Transmission infrastructure build-out is necessary to support the spread of renewables in the US, according to this analysis. Observers say that by failing to provide support for transmission lines, regulators are stanching the flow of renewables by preventing clean energy from spreading to the areas where it's needed most and by creating a gap between the amount of energy produced and used.
Wind is responsible for 77% of new zero-carbon generating capacity in the US in the past 10 years and has an undeniable role to play in the nation's shift toward a clean-energy economy, writes American Wind Energy Association Senior Director of Research Michael Goggin. He argues that natural gas -- not renewables -- is hurting nuclear development and that wind and nuclear proponents should work together to bolster low-carbon generation.
North Dakota is home to some of the best wind resources in the country and has potential for future wind-related investments, according to North Dakota Public Service Commission Commissioner Brian Kalk. In Western North Dakota alone, more than 400 turbines have been added over the past 10 years, and developers have plans to add another 550 turbines by 2018.
How Fortune 500 is driving new market for clean energy
What brings diverse companies like Amazon, Disney, General Motors, Microsoft, Nike, Starbucks and Wal-Mart together? They're all buying renewable energy or want to get in the market for it. From tech giants to household names, corporate America is shopping for clean, renewable energy that is increasingly cheaper than conventional alternatives. Leading companies are seizing the opportunity to reduce their environmental footprint with wind and solar while simultaneously locking-in low, predictable energy prices for a decade or more. Read more.
In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.
James Allen, writer
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.