Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Google Backs Major Offshore Wind Power Grid Project

Google is putting its money on offshore wind power. It's bought a major stake in an offshore wind power project that would construct a new trunk line to deliver up to 6,000 megawatts of wind power to the East Coast from Virginia to New York.
Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Good Energies, a renewable energy investment firm, have agreed to take a 37.5 percent equity stake each in the project which will connect 6,000 megawatts of offshore wind turbines.

Google said on its official blog that the line can handle the equivalent of 60 percent of the wind energy that was installed in the entire country last year and enough to serve approximately 1.9 million households.

The initial investment in first phase construction alone works out to about $200 million each, Robert L. Mitchell, the CEO of Trans-Elect told the New York Times. The Maryland-based transmission-line company proposed the venture.
The project would be especially beneficial to New Jersey, where several projects are currently being considered. Designing and building an offshore power grid is more expensive than doing so onshore, but it circumvents the problems associated with building in someone's backyard (NIMBY rearing its ugly head).

It would go a long way to improving the electric grid on the East Coast and build redundancy as well as a means for connecting the proposed wind power projects with the consumers of that power.

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