Tuesday, June 23, 2009

.: EfficienCity :.

Greenpeace UK has put together a nice website to help envision an climate-friendly city.

EfficienCity is a virtual city but all towns and cities in the UK could be enjoying the same lower greenhouse gas emissions, cheaper bills and better energy security.

Visit the EfficienCity and check out the "South Zone". It has cool animations/explanations of wind, wave and tidal power as well as information resources.

Salazar Announces 5 Exploratory Leases for Offshore Wind Energy Development off Coasts of NJ & DE

Contact: Frank Quimby (DOI), (202) 208-6416
Nicholas Pardi (MMS), (202) 208-7746

ATLANTIC CITY, NJ - Calling it a major step forward in President Obama's new energy frontier, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, joined by New Jersey Gov. Jon S. Corzine, today issued five exploratory leases for renewable wind energy production on the Outer Continental Shelf offshore New Jersey and Delaware.

"We are entering a new day for energy production in the United States - a time of clean energy from renewable domestic sources on our Outer Continental Shelf," Secretary Salazar said. "Other nations have been using offshore wind energy for more than a decade. We made the development of offshore wind energy a top priority for Interior. The technology is proven, effective and available and can create new jobs for Americans while reducing our expensive and dangerous dependence on foreign oil."

"This is tremendous news for New Jersey and I thank Secretary Salazar and the Obama Administration for issuing these leases which are so critical to getting the development of our offshore wind turbine projects underway," said Governor Jon S. Corzine. "New Jersey's Outer Continental Shelf is a resource that holds a great promise for our energy independence and should be considered a haven for the clean, renewable and environmentally friendly energy that wind power provides. This is a major step for the State in meeting its goal of 1000 megawatts by 2013 and 3000 megawatts by 2020."

"The development of clean energy will be a major part of our economic recovery and will help lay the foundation for long-term economic security for our families, our state and our nation," said U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ). "We should be proud that New Jersey has led the way in the effort to harness the tremendous potential that offshore wind in the Atlantic has to generate clean electricity. This lease is a step toward lowering energy costs for families, creating innovative 21st Century industry jobs and reducing our reliance on dirty energy."

Secretary Salazar issued the exploratory leases, the first of their kind ever issued by the Federal Government, to Bluewater Wind New Jersey Energy, LLC; Fishermen's Energy of New Jersey, LLC; Deepwater Wind, LLC; and Bluewater Wind Delaware, LLC. The leases were developed under an Interim Policy and authorize data gathering activities, allowing for the construction of meteorological towers on the Outer Continental Shelf from six to 18 miles offshore to collect site-specific data on wind speed, intensity, and direction.

The leases exemplify the renewable energy initiatives Secretary Salazar has made a top priority and worked to accelerate. Under his efforts, the final regulatory framework for Outer Continental Shelf renewable energy development was completed in the first 100 days of President Obama's administration. The comprehensive framework, which regularizes the process and brings certainty to this nascent industry in terms of how applications for OCS wind, solar and hydrokinetic resources would be addressed, had been long delayed in the previous administration. Interior negotiated a breakthrough agreement with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on April 9 that clarified the jurisdictional responsibilities for leasing and licensing renewable energy projects.

The President and the Secretary announced the final comprehensive framework on Earth Day, April 22, and it becomes effective on June 29. It provides the "rules of the road" for states and companies with renewable energy initiatives to pursue development of those projects on federal submerged lands as well as methods for sharing 27.5 percent of the revenues generated from these projects with adjacent coastal States. The Secretary then launched a series of 12 Minerals Management Service workshops nationwide to discuss and explain the new program for renewable energy on the Outer Continental Shelf.

The data collected under these leases will be shared with Interior's Minerals Management Service and used to inform and support future commercial renewable energy projects, such as wind turbine farms, to help coastal States meet mandated renewable energy portfolio standards.

New Jersey is actively pursing the development of offshore wind energy through various state initiatives (e.g., grant solicitations, reimbursement programs, and renewable energy portfolio standards). In October 2008, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities established a meteorological tower reimbursement program, which provides $4 million per company to help expedite the development of offshore wind.

In Delaware, Delmarva Power signed a power purchase agreement with Bluewater Wind for up to 200MW in June 2008, and the pact was ratified by the state in July 2008. Delaware's average offshore winds have the potential to produce 5,286 MW*, which would power between 1.2 to 1.5 million average homes.

The following companies are receiving the exploratory leases for meteorological towers:

New Jersey
15 - 18 miles
Bluewater Wind New Jersey Energy, LLC

New Jersey
6 - 9 miles
Fishermen's Energy of New Jersey, LLC

New Jersey
15 - 18 miles
Deepwater Wind, LLC

New Jersey
12 - 15 miles
Deepwater Wind, LLC

14 miles
Bluewater Wind Delaware, LLC

For additional information on the limited leases and renewable energy, please visit:


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Oregon Well Situated For Ocean Energy

There are a series of coincidences that make Oregon well-suited to take advantage of ocean power.

Advantage one: Oregon has a coastline. But unlike the states along the eastern seaboard, the waves that reach our coast are large and regular -- because they have thousands of miles to grow. Prevailing weather means that waves develop from west to east.

Advantage two: the state sits around the 45th parallel, where waves are apparently bigger, according to Bob Paasch the direct of the newly formed Northwest National Marine Renewable Energy Center.

Advantage three: in order to bring electricity ashore, you need industrial scale substations close to the ocean. Oregon has dozens of those in the form of shuttered old logging mills.
Read More

Friday, June 12, 2009

Wave Energy Projects that interest the Surfrider Foundation

View Wave Energy Projects in a larger map

These are wave energy projects where the Surfrider Foundation is actively participating in project planning. This doesn't mean that we fully endorse the proposed project but we are following their progress and providing input.

Click on the symbol to see project name and FERC docket number. The FERC docket number can be used to find up to date information on the permit status for that project.

Click here to look up the docket number: http://elibrary.ferc.gov/idmws/docket_search.asp

Monday, June 8, 2009

Blue Energy: Plans to harness the ocean excite coastal power agencies

The boundary of Pacific County’s public utility district touches a source of clean and inexhaustible energy — the ocean. And PUD manager Doug Miller says he thinks it’s “highly likely” that someday the utility will plug into it.“I’m excited,” he said. “It’s right here in our backyard.”

Spurred by a nationwide push to develop green energy, entrepreneurs and public utilities are scouting Washington’s coastline from the Strait of Juan de Fuca to the mouth of the Columbia River for places to generate electricity by channeling the sea through turbines.

Ocean energy advocates say the sea’s reliability and proximity to coastal population centers provide a big benefit for a country trying to wean itself from fossil fuels. The ocean energy industry, however, is in its infancy and faces technical and environmental problems.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Federal Cuts Proposed for Research & Development

Washington D.C. - The Obama administration has proposed a 25 percent cut in the research and development budget for wave and tidal power. At the same time the White House sought an 82 percent increase in solar power research funding, a 36 percent increase in wind power funding and a 14 percent increase in geothermal funding. But it looked to cut wave and tidal research funding from $40 million to $30 million.The decision to cut funding came only weeks after the Interior Department suggested that wave power could emerge as the leading offshore energy source in the Northwest and at a time when efforts to develop tidal power in Puget Sound are attracting national and international attention. By some estimates, wave and tidal power could eventually meet 10 percent of the nation's electricity demand, about the same as hydropower currently delivers. To read the full article in the Tacoma News Tribune, please click here.