Is ‘off’shore BigWind a CHEAP way to produce energy? NO WAY!

We have, repeatedly, blogged that electricity rates are HIGHER wherever there are wind turbines. Do you believe that offshore wind is cheaper? Think again. The numbers below are absolutely staggering. What do YOU pay per kWh for electricity in your home? What do you believe your employer pays? My home bill is below 7 cents….

One of the towering turbines on the nation’s first offshore wind project was unlocked and started to spin Monday in the ocean waters off Rhode Island as the project begins months of testing prior to generating commercial clean energy.

Although President Barack Obama hailed the project as a renewable energy milestone, critics are awaiting a new hearing in the weeks ahead as they continue a legal fight…

 

The power agreement will require ratepayers to pay 24 cents per kilowatt-hour for the wind farm’s electricity, which is twice as much as the competitive rate, McCourt told AMI. In addition, there is a 3.5 percent annual escalator over the next two decades, he said, so the overall cost for ratepayers over that time will be $497 million.

“We’re looking at a rate 20 years from now that could be close to 50 cents a kilowatt,” McCourt said.
And Rhode Island already pays among the highest rates for energy in the nation, he said. Indeed, last year the state had the second highest electricity rates in the continental United States, at just over 17 cents per kilowatt-hour, according to the federal Energy Information Administration.

While it’s true that the wind farm project will represent a small fraction of the state’s power usage, McCourt said that even an incremental increase in overall rates can only make the state’s energy situation worse.

“This is death by a thousand paper cuts,” he said.

The U.S. Department of Energy reported last year that there are 21 offshore wind energy projects – with a potential of more than 15,000 megawatts of generation — in various stages of development across the nation. A single megawatt can power several hundred homes….

 

“It sounds great, but is it practical?” he said.

McCourt emphasized that the manufacturers association is concerned strictly with the power purchase agreement and not the wind project itself. Under that agreement, manufacturers will bear a significant part of the cost, something that may dissuade businesses from relocating to Rhode Island in the future, he said.

Moreover, McCourt doesn’t see offshore wind as a major long-term source of new jobs for the state. The Block Island project did provide some temporary construction jobs, as well as jobs in component assembly, but the prime components for wind turbine energy are being built by established businesses in other parts of the world, he said.

“The odds of a company to establish a manufacturing plant here to make those (components) is probably, in my mind, very low,” McCourt said….

Source: Critics blast power costs from nation’s first offshore wind farm

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