North Carolina Could Get All Power From Off-Shore Wind Turbines

Move over, Norway, here comes North Carolina. A new study out of the University of North Carolina (UNC) has shown that North Carolina could produce 100% of its power from off-shore wind turbines, without adversely impacting humans or the environment.

According to CleanTechnica, the state has a goal of supplying 12.5% of its power from renewable energy by 2021. But marine ecologist and co-author of the new study, Pete Peterson, pointed out in a statement that if North Carolina developed one-sixth of the offshore regions suitable for wind farms, it would be possible to generate twenty percent of the state’s power needs. The study involved researchers from UNC, North Carolina State University and East Carolina University as well as experts on everything from birds, bats, and insects, to ecotourism and fishing, highlighting Onslow Bay and Raleigh Bay as prime areas for off-shore wind development.

Offshore_Wind_Turbines

image courtesy of CleanTechnica

Even more encouraging: plans are now in the works for Duke Energy to build three off-shore pilot turbines in state waters, which would make North Carolina–which boasts some of the best wind speeds in the country–the first state to generate wind power from in-water turbines.  As far as aesthetic impact to the state’s scenic coastlines, the impact would be negligible, as these full-sized wind turbines, stationed 20 miles off shore, will look no more than an inch tall.

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Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.