Say, Why Doesn’t America Have Any Off-shore Wind Farms?


Surprising, Mother Jones’ Tim McDonnell never mentions how Democrats, especially the late Ted Kennedy and current Secretary of Climate Change, er, State, John Kerry worked hard to block the Cape Wind project

(Mother Jones) Despite massive growth of the offshore wind industry in Europe, a blossoming array of land-based wind turbines stateside, and plenty of wind to spare, the United States has yet to sink even one turbine in the ocean. Not exactly the kind of leadership on renewables President Obama called for in his recent State of the Union address.

That’s funny. Tim used leadership and Obama in the same sentence. This is the same guy who flies across the country and back to make a 30 minute speech, which involves taking two giant planes and heavy fossil fueled limo, plus all the cars in the motorcade.

Anyhow, he gives four reasons, the first of which is that the wind industry cannot survive without government bucks

That’s especially a problem for offshore wind, says Thierry Aelens, an executive with German developer RWE. Higher construction and transmission costs make electricity from offshore over twice the price of onshore in the United States, he says, a tough pill for state regulators and utility operators to swallow, especially given the low cost of natural gas made possible by fracking. Today renewables startups rely heavily on private investment to get off the ground, but the industry needs better financial backing from the feds to help it compete with fossil fuels, Aelens says. “Germany is a fully subsidized system. Which technology get supported is fully in the hands of the government.”

So, wind energy is already super duper expensive, and would be even more expensive from off-shore, and without massive subsidies it can’t survive.

2. Blowback from “stakeholders”: Whale and bird lovers. Defenders of tribal lands. Fishermen. The Koch brothers. Since it was proposed in 2001, Cape Wind, a wind farm whose backers say could provide 75 percent of Cape Cod’s energy needs, has been run through a bewildering gauntlet of opponents and fought off more than a dozen lawsuits on everything from boat traffic interference to desecration of sacred sites to harming avian and marine life.

Interesting. The Koch brothers are mentioned (and, yes, they have provided funds to some who are protesting Cape Wind) but not Ted Kennedy, who did all he could to block the project because the turbines would be visible from the Kennedy compound. Super enviro-weenie Joseph Kennedy, Jr, says he supports offshore wind projects, just not where he can see them.

Anyhow, number 3 is that the US has no ships that can handle installing offshore wind turbines.

Number 4 is that states and feds butt heads, and big government fascists, er, progressives are really upset that the Federal Government can’t just MAKE things happen.

What’s missing is that over time we’ve learned that the electricity from Cape Wind is going to be quite a bit more expensive than originally proposed, and will increase the costs for the islands who would receive the electricity. It can also reduce property values, hurt tourism, and cost jobs. Some say this is BS, people will get used to them. Alas, when you look at places with wind turbines, residents have lost a lot in property value (can be as much as 40%). They complain about views of turbines on land, such as in the UK and Oregon, which have residents who aren’t happy about seeing these tall turbines blighting the landscape.

And then there is the notion that so many enviros/Warmists say they love the thought of wind power, but do not want these projects to actually be built. Especially where they can see them.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.

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