Gulf of Maine Wind Proposal Could Cost $25B

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Last week, we took a quick look at Matthew Simmon’s Ocean Energy Institute and its proposal to build a 5 gigawatt (GW) offshore wind farm in the Gulf of Maine. This evening we chatted with the Ocean Energy Institute’s George Hart, who explained a few more details of the ambitious plan: Hart says the 5 GW offshore wind farm could cost $5 billion per gigawatt — a whopping total of $25 billion. That’s more than double the amount of investment that T. Boone Pickens’ now-delayed wind farm is supposed to cost.

Hart also explained to us that the nonprofit Ocean Energy Institute, which employs only Hart full time and a couple of other part-time advisers and interns, is looking at a variety of ways to propel its offshore wind plan forward. One of those could be for the Institute to take on the role of project coordinator, including coordinating funding for the project. Hart says that Simmons, who is an energy investor and adviser, has managed this kind of multi-billion-dollar project financing before and has a long list of industry connections. According to an article in Fortune, after he graduated from Harvard Business School in 1969, Simmons helped raise money for a company called Oceaneering, which turned into “one of the country’s fastest-growing and most successful offshore-drilling service companies.”

But the Ocean Energy Institute is a far ways off from coordinating a massive fund raising effort. The Institute could decide to go other routes to help implement its plan as well, like connecting companies and inventors building technology like new offshore turbines and platforms. And if the Institute decides to act as project coordinator it will likely do so several years down the road, as raising funding in these markets is difficult, Hart concedes. “Everything has certainly changed from a year ago,” Hart says, adding that “capital is very tight.”

Hart says the project development process is in “a very slow dance.” Basically, we get the impression that the plan is a proposal without a clear path to how or if it will be implemented. With a price tag like $25 billion it will take a massive undertaking to coordinate.

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Cliff Carroll

The costs of a poorly chosen offshore wind farm is best exhibited by the Cape Wind Nantucket Sound offshore industrial plant proposed just off the beaches of Cape Cod. This sprawling 25 square mile industrial plant (size of the island of Manhattan) will tower 44 stories above the pristine shore lines of the island of Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod. In the middle of it a 10 story transformer filled with 40,000 gallons of transformer oil. The local airports, ferry lines and chambers of commerce have strongly protested the threats presented to our navigation, tourism and fragile eco system. This project is not offshore, it is off our beaches. And for what? According to section F of the federal DEIS it will Double our electric rates and that is after an estimated $70,000,000 a year in Federal and State hand outs for the next 10 to 20 years.
The USCG recently told the President of the Mass Fishermens Partnership (3800 fishermen) that they will have to find another palce to fish. Outrageous!!
Offshore wind is like the Hindenburg, just take a look at the insane $2 Billion Cape Wind proposal, it is destined to crash and burn before it is even built.
Let’s put our tax payer dollars where they will count, not in some private developers pocket
http://www.windstop.org

lance sjogren

What is the alternative? Should we just allow civilization to die due to lack of energy resources?

Clifford J. Wirth, Ph.D.

Independent studies conclude that global crude oil production will now decline from 74 million barrels per day to 60 million barrels per day by 2015. During the same time, demand will increase. Oil supplies will be even tighter for the U.S. As oil producing nations consume more and more oil domestically they will export less and less. Because demand is high in China, India, the Middle East, and other oil producing nations, once global oil production begins to decline, demand will always be higher than supply. And since the U.S. represents one fourth of global oil demand, whatever oil we conserve will be consumed elsewhere. Thus, conservation in the U.S. will not slow oil depletion rates significantly.

Alternatives will not even begin to fill the gap. And most alternatives yield electric power, but we need liquid fuels for tractors/combines, 18 wheel trucks, trains, ships, and mining equipment. The independent scientists of the Energy Watch Group conclude in a current report titled: “Peak Oil Could Trigger Meltdown of Society:”

“By 2020, and even more by 2030, global oil supply will be dramatically lower. This will create a supply gap which can hardly be closed by growing contributions from other fossil, nuclear or alternative energy sources in this time frame.”

http://www.energywatchgroup.org/fileadmin/global/pdf/EWG_Press_Oilreport_22-10-2007.pdf

With increasing costs for gasoline and diesel, along with declining taxes and declining gasoline tax revenues, states and local governments will eventually have to cut staff and curtail highway maintenance. Eventually, gasoline stations will close, and state and local highway workers won’t be able to get to work. We are facing the collapse of the highways that depend on diesel and gasoline powered trucks for bridge maintenance, culvert cleaning to avoid road washouts, snow plowing, and roadbed and surface repair. When the highways fail, so will the power grid, as highways carry the parts, large transformers, steel for pylons, and high tension cables from great distances. With the highways out, there will be no food coming from far away, and without the power grid virtually nothing modern works, including home heating, pumping of gasoline and diesel, airports, communications, and automated building systems.

This is documented in a free 48 page report that can be downloaded, website posted, distributed, and emailed: http://www.peakoilassociates.com/POAnalysis.html

I used to live in NH-USA, but moved to a sustainable place. Anyone interested in relocating to a nice, pretty, sustainable area with a good climate and good soil? Email: clifford dot wirth at yahoo dot com or give me a phone call which operates here as my old USA-NH number 603-668-4207. http://survivingpeakoil.blogspot.com/

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