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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Google Makes Investment In Off Shore Wind Farm

The Official Google Blog has announced an investment by the company in a backbone transmission project off of the mid-Atlantic. 
When built out, the Atlantic Wind Connection (AWC) backbone will stretch 350 miles off the coast from New Jersey to Virginia and will be able to connect 6,000MW of offshore wind turbines. That’s equivalent to 60% of the wind energy that was installed in the entire country last year and enough to serve approximately 1.9 million households.
Besides the environmental advantages of off shore wind energy, Google says the project makes good business sense as well and is "... investing 37.5% of the equity in this initial development stage, with the goal of obtaining all the necessary approvals to finance and begin constructing the line. Although the development stage requires only a small part of the total estimated project budget, it represents a critical stage for the project."

There certainly is ample wind off the east coast, and by locating the turbines offshore, in relatively shallow waters, the producers should not meet the same objections that land based wind farms do regarding noise and health affects to local residents. The turbines will supply power to the strongest land based grids along the coast via under water cables. At 1.9 million households it's still but a drop in the bucket, but it's a great start.