Using Wind to Power Long Island!
Clean, inexhaustable energy
for the 21st Century
Long Island Offshore Wind Farm Proposal "Taken Off the Table"
Wind power is clean, technologically mature, and not dependent on diminishing fossil fuels. On Long Island, there is little available open land where wind turbines can be placed, and on onshore winds are not sufficiently powerful for large-scale wind farms to be economically feasible.
It was recently announced by LIPA that plans for the proposed offshore wind farm to be built by Florida Power and Light would be cancelled. The reason given for the cancellation of the project was the increasing projected cost for the project. A recently released study from Pace Global Energy Services estimated that the potential rate impact from the offshore windfarm, at the higher projected cost, would be about $2.50 per month for the average residential customer (about a 1.6% increase in the bill).
The Neighborhood Network belives that wind power and off-shore wind facilities should still play a significant role in Long Island's energy future, even though this particular proposal has been taken off the table. On the cancellation of the Florida Power and Light proposal, Neighborhood Network Executive Director, Neal Lewis was quoted in Newsday, August 23, 2007, "I think a number of things went wrong with the whole process. We indicated years ago that cost issues should have been brought out in a more forthright way."
The Neighborhood Network is calling on LIPA to commission a major study of potential renewable energy projects for Long Island. The study should be broad in scope, with all technologies and sites on the table. It should be conducted by a well respected independent firm, and should actively solicit public input. In cases where conflicts arise, professional third-party mediation should be employed to help identify common ground, and acceptable mitigation measures. We look forward to working with LIPA to help identify new opportunities for developing renewable energy.
An operating offshore windfarm in Vindeby, Denmark, built in 1991
The proposal received consistently high approval ratings from the general public. In a recent Cablevision News 12 online poll, 87% of those responding were against killing the windfarm proposal, and a 2006 Hofstra University poll found 85% of respondents supportive of LIPAs offshore wind project. Offshore wind energy production is also supported by the Islands leading labor and business organizations such as the Long Island Association, Hauppauge Industrial Association, Long Island Mid-Suffolk Business Association and the Nassau/Suffolk Building and Construction Trades Council.
The Neighborhood Network is a member of Wind Works Long Island. See windworks4li.org for mor information about the offshore wind project.
Advantages of wind power:
Wind power is clean and inexhaustible. Taking power from the wind releases no emissions and does not deplete natural resources.
Wind power promotes local economic development. Wind power creates more jobs per dollar invested and per kWh generated. A study by the New York State Energy Office found that 10 million kWh of electricity produced by wind energy generates 27 % more jobs in the state than the same amount of energy produced by a coal plant and 66 % more jobs than a natural gas combined-cycle power plant. This is because most money spent on wind power is spent on local labor, rather than on foreign, or out-of-state fuel.
Wind power reduces dependence on fossil fuels that are subject to price volatility. Because it uses no fuel, the cost of wind power is much more stable. Oil, coal and gas power plants are dependent on fuels that are subject to shortages and price spikes. Future environmental regulations may also increase the costs of operating fossil fuel burning plants, either by adding a surcharge for emissions, or requiring costly emission control technologies.
Although construction and maintenance costs are somewhat higher for offshore turbines, winds on the ocean are stronger, more consistent and less turbulent than on land, so they produce more energy. In addition due to the lower turbulance, which results from winds travelling more smoothly over water than land, offshore turbines are subjected to less wear and may have a longer life-span. Offshore wind farms have already been established in northern Europe in water depths up to 50 feet, and advances in undersea foundation designs are making deeper water placement more cost effective.
Did you know?
A study commissioned by LIPA found that wind turbines along the south shore, between 3 and six miles off shore could supply a significant portion of Long Island's electricity needs. To download the study follow this link: http://www.lioffshorewindenergy.org/study.html.
Many European countries have made the construction of land-based and offshore wind farms a top energy policy priority. According to the Brussels based Global Wind Energy Council (www.gwec.net ), installed global wind power capacity has grown to 59,322 MW.
The countries with the highest total installed wind power capacity are:
1. Germany (18,428 MW)
2. Spain (10,027 MW)
3. United States (9,149 MW)
4. India (4,430 MW)
5. Denmark (3,122 MW)