The renewable energy projects include 18 utility-scale solar facilities, 9 geothermal plants and 7 commercial wind farms.
In addition to providing 13,000 jobs, these projects will provide 10,400 megawatts of energy, or enough to power 3.4 million homes, all without the emissions associated with fossil fuels.
The west is not the only beneficiary of the federal government’s support for renewable energy. On the opposite coast, Interior and other federal agencies have worked with their state counterparts, academia, and industry to identify six Wind Energy Areas (WEAs) off the Atlantic coast. These assessments examined areas with the greatest wind energy potential and fewest environmental risks.
The Department of the Interior is also moving forward with the construction of the 130-acre Cape Wind project, which is the first commercial wind development slated for federal offshore waters. Interior has already issued two non-competitive commercial wind leases, one off the coast of Massachusetts’ and one other off the coast of Delaware. It will also conduct the first competitive lease sale for a 278,000 acres WEA off Virgini, Rhode Island and Massachusetts.
Development of these offshore wind farms could support more than 4,000 megawatts (MW) of energy which is enough to supply power to 1.4 million homes.
In addition, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is evaluating a proposal to build the Atlantic Wind Connection, offshore, mid-Atlantic region transmission infrastructure that could carry as much as 7,000 MW of electricity from offshore wind farms.
These results demonstrate that government’s are capable of growing renewable energy and providing jobs all while paying due heed to social and environmental considerations.
© 2013, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.
US Government Support for Renewable Energy Projects
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