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Monday, November 9, 2009

$700,000 in stimulus for offshore wind turbines

You know what's really going to give the New Hampshire economy an immediate boost? Offshore wind turbines! Because nothing gives small business owners an incentive to grow their workforce like a windmill, in the water. UNH is getting $700,000 from us, through the stimulus package, for an experimental program that anchors wind turbines in deep water to the ocean floor. Seacoast Online reprints the UNH press release.
Within the next year, CORE will install a wind turbine with a 25-foot diameter on a 60-foot tower floating in 170 feet of water just south of the Isles of Shoals, where a mooring grid is already in place – and permitted – from UNH's Atlantic Marine Aquaculture Center. The site is six miles offshore and one mile south of White Island. CORE researchers will equip the 10-kilowatt turbine with extensive instrumentation to measure wind, wave, and temperature effects on the turbine itself, the platform on which it floats, and the mooring lines that anchor it to the ocean floor.
I'm sure the folks at UNH are doing good work. Maybe some day, we will be getting 20% of our electricity from windmills, as the Department of Energy hopes. But does this really reach the level of an emergency stimulus package, or is it just another way for Congress to borrow from the future in order to buy support back home?

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