J. Tierney: Near shore wind power ready now

To be sure, it is good, as was suggested in the Sun Journal editorial (Dec. 11), that Habib Dagher is exploring creative ways to generate the nine billion kilowatts of electricity that Mainers use each year. Sending our checks to POB 11752 in Newark, N.J., cannot be good for the Maine economy. But, putting the turbines on floating platforms, as the editorial also suggested, may be a stretch, especially since we don’t have to.

The same technology being used to generate electricity in the mountains of western Maine can be used to generate electricity in water up to 90 feet deep, and much of the Gulf of Maine is less than 90 feet deep. I would think there would be a spot where turbines could be placed that wouldn’t shake the sensibilities of the folks fortunate enough to live along the coast.

The technology for near-shore wind generated electricity has already been proven. It is ready to go now and Cianbro is ready to install it. Waiting 18 more years for the far-off-shore technology to prove itself cannot be in the best interest of Mainers.

And, since Mainers own the wind within three miles of shore, we don’t have to pay either the federal government or some corporation from away for access to turn the turbines.

We have known this for over a decade or more. What stands in the way of Mainers using the wind to generate electricity?

Do you know?

James Tierney, Auburn

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Frank Heller's picture

Actually, undersea generation of electricity is still risky.

Unless marine currents are channeled through barrages holding arrays of underwater turbines, the greater the current the more likely that the mounting frames will be subject to a wide variety of stresses and strains.


Go to a Coast Guard station and examine the used off shore buoys and the wear & tear on them.

There are long standing barrages off of France, like the Rance installation built in 1966; and new one at Orkney, Scotland. see this video to see how they work: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=NO1mFMQlMDg

Now imagine the environmental opposition to building this in Maine or ever restoring the tidal barrage at say, Parker head.

JOANNE MOORE's picture

Mr. Tierney,

Do you have any idea what amount the fishing industry adds to the tax base in Maine? Or are you just repeating stuff Angus told you.

And, do you know that most of the electricity generated by wind goes to other states who we share the grid with? And that it is only a fickle trickle at that? All that environmental damage to our hills and mountains just so other states will benefit?

I do not live on the coastline so this is NOT a case of NIMBY. But I will fight with whatever it takes to keep our coast from being destroyed. A coastline, I might add, that also generates tax dollars from tourism.

Do you really want to destroy the fishing industry AND tourism, our two main industries, for the benefit of con artists who say wind is a green industry?

I always thought you were an honerable and smart person. Guess I was wrong.

ERNEST LABBE's picture

Simple answer

Simple answer: the same answer to every other problem we have. THE NIMBY's.

 's picture

High cost and

High cost and non-dispatchable to a power system based on serving the customer with reliable and steady electricity.


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