LOCE Wind and Wave Energy Weblog

The web's first ocean and offshore wind energy weblog. Continuously renewed, like the ocean itself.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Update on US Tidal Power Development

A Reuters report,
U.S. cities eye ocean waves for power supplies
(2/15/05) gives an update on tidal and wave energy developments in the US. The article reports that in May, Verdant Power is scheduled to place as many as six underwater turbines on the bottom of New York City's East River to supply power to a food market on Roosevelt Island in the river, which separates Manhattan from the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens. Eventually, the project could expand to 200-300 turbines and would produce five to 10 megawatts of electricity at an initial cost of $20 million, but New York state as a whole, Taylor said, could produce about 1,000 megawatts, or power for about 1 million homes. The fuel source is free.

There's tidal progress on the West Coast as well with the City of San Francisco studying wave energy potential beneath the Golden Gate Bridge. The article reports that the city is working on a demonstration project with Scotland's Ocean Power. Other offshore sites include Oahu, Hawaii, WellFleet, Massachusetts, and Gardiner, Oregon, are also candidates for pilot studies.

Tidal Power for Russia

Here's a blurb from an article in Bellona.no (2/9/05) entitled Tidal power plant re-opened in Murmansk region about the possibilities for tidal power in Russia:

"Russia has fantastic possibilities for building of some tidal power plants of unique capacity", – said Anatoly Chubais – chairman of Board of Unified Energy Systems of Russia (UES) after visiting Kislogubskay tidal power plant in Murmansk region on 8th of February.

Chubais mentioned that a unique orthogonal tool of the tidal power plant is the first tool in the world, discovered by Russian scientists. It is a pilot project, and specialists have to work hard on managing the orthogonal tool. The orthogonal turbine of the plant rotates one side, independently of fluxes and refluxes, “RIA News” reported.
“Kolenergo” energy company is an owner of the unique Russian pilot Kislogubskaya tide power plant. After 10 years of delay the plant was put into operation in December last year due to construction of a new orthogonal hydroelectric unit. Specialists of “Kolenergo” company say that the unit opens wide possibilities for industrial use of renewable sources of energy.

Electric Socket Under the Sea

This article, 'Electric socket' in sea to make waves (Scotsman, 2/10/05)reports that a giant electric socket on the seabed has been proposed which could help develop Britain's wave power indutry. From the article:

The proposed multi-million pound Wave Hub "socket" - which would be moored ten miles off the South West coast - would be a test bed for wave power developers.

Wave energy converters on or just below the surface would be linked to the wave hub, and an electricity cable would run under the sea floor to connect it to the national grid on land.

A location for the project off the coast of Hayle, north Cornwall, has been identified.

The plan - which has support in principle from Energy Minister Mike O’Brien - would bridge the gap between production prototypes and full commercial wave farms. It would also generate enough clean, renewable energy to power 60,000 homes, according to studies commissioned by the South West of England Regional Development Agency.

Corps' Cape Wind EIS Criticized by Cape Cod Commission

This article,

Commission wants more from the Corps
(Barnstable Patriot 2/11/05)
reports that the Cape Cod Commission filed a 32 page critique of the Corps' Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) regarding the Cape Wind project and has asked for preparation of a supplemental EIS. According to the article, the Cape Cod Commission objected to the following issues:

that the Corps defined the “utility-scale renewable energy” project standard based on the size of Cape Wind’s proposal, overlooking all other renewable projects, which are smaller; that it failed to analyze alternatives such as the phased introduction of turbines being practiced in Arklow, Ireland or a distributed-generation operation of several smaller clusters of turbines; that “flawed assumptions and inappropriate compressions” are found in some of the conclusions; that the analysis used to reach those conclusions was not objective in all cases; and that the environmental and economic benefits touted for the project were not actually tied to the project.

DOI Report on Renewables on Public Lands

Via Renewable Energy Law Blog comes this link to a Science Blog post on efforts to increase interest in development and use of renewable energy resources found on public lands. According to the article, the DOI's 26-page report, Renewable Resources for America's Future, shows that lands managed by the Department of the Interior provide 48 percent of the nation's geothermal energy, 17 percent of hydropower and close to 10 percent of the nation's wind energy production.
The report is available here.