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Clean Power great-lakes-wind-300x195

Published on June 2nd, 2009 | by Jeff Kart

6

Great Lakes Wind Hopes to Blow from 0 to 20 by 2030

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June 2nd, 2009 by
 
Right now, there’s no wind in the Great Lakes, but lots of talk.

There’s a bit of money, too, totaling about $100,000 from the federal stimulus package, aka the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

The Great Lakes Commission has been granted $99,740 to develop a set of “Best Practices to Accelerate Wind Power in the Great Lakes and Beyond.”

The end result will be a guide to what works and what doesn’t when it comes to protecting the environment, being sensitive to community concerns and … building wind turbines in the water.

Michigan, the Great Lakes state, has become renowned recently for a record number of proposed coal-fired power plants (eight). With plans recently shelved for a new coal burner in Midland, near the headquarters of the Dow Chemical Co., that number is down to 7.

What is wind worth to Michigan and other Great Lake states? The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that a 20 percent wind-energy scenario by 2030 would cut carbon dioxide emissions by 1,260 tons and save more than 600,000 gallons of water. In other words, 70 times the amount of bottle water consumed in the United States in 2007.

I’d like to know what people think the pitfalls and positives are of erecting towers to capture wind in the Great Lakes — a resource that supplies drinking water, recreation and is home to (and visited by) a rich array of wildlife. Are there more jobs to be had in coal or wind on the water? Comment away.

(Image Credit: Wagner Christian, Creative Commons.)

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About the Author

is typing about issues in the Great Lakes, from advanced biofuels to zero-emission vehicles. Jeff is an environmental journalist and social media evangelist based in Michigan, where the summers are short, the winters are cold, and the stories are plentiful.



  • russ

    Clean coal is not new – just unused due to the costs. Check out the Great Plains Gasification project now owned by the Antelope Valley Coop (possibly electric coop).

    That project is from the 70′s and started in the early 80′s.

    With higher priced oil & gas (like now) it works.

  • russ

    Clean coal is not new – just unused due to the costs. Check out the Great Plains Gasification project now owned by the Antelope Valley Coop (possibly electric coop).

    That project is from the 70′s and started in the early 80′s.

    With higher priced oil & gas (like now) it works.

  • http://americaspower.org Monica from ACCCE

    Why not consider clean coal technology?

    A lot of people don’t know exactly what clean coal technology is, so I’ll fill you in: it refers not to any one technology, but to an entire suite of advanced technologies.

    During the America’s Power Factuality Tour, we’ve been traveling around the country talking to the people who are behind the production of cleaner electricity from coal – including a stop at the Pleasant Prairie Power Plant in Wisconsin. They’ve installed a retrofit system that has reduced nitrogen oxide emissions by 90 percent and sulfur dioxide emissions by 95 percent.

    In addition, through a pilot project in partnership with Alstom Power, they’re developing the latest in carbon capture technology. Check out http://sn.im/factuality5 to get the facts on clean coal technology once and for all.

  • http://americaspower.org Monica from ACCCE

    Why not consider clean coal technology?

    A lot of people don’t know exactly what clean coal technology is, so I’ll fill you in: it refers not to any one technology, but to an entire suite of advanced technologies.

    During the America’s Power Factuality Tour, we’ve been traveling around the country talking to the people who are behind the production of cleaner electricity from coal – including a stop at the Pleasant Prairie Power Plant in Wisconsin. They’ve installed a retrofit system that has reduced nitrogen oxide emissions by 90 percent and sulfur dioxide emissions by 95 percent.

    In addition, through a pilot project in partnership with Alstom Power, they’re developing the latest in carbon capture technology. Check out http://sn.im/factuality5 to get the facts on clean coal technology once and for all.

    • http://www.facebook.com/MarkhamNDP Markham Ndp

      To call the output of any coal plant clean is outrageous. The coal ash containing more radioactive waste than any Nuclear power plant, and the mercury contamination are enough to be concerned with. Ontario is off coal, and so can you. The only thing preventing it is ignorance and a few $ out of your electricity bill every year.

  • http://americaspower.org Monica from ACCCE

    Why not consider clean coal technology?

    A lot of people don’t know exactly what clean coal technology is, so I’ll fill you in: it refers not to any one technology, but to an entire suite of advanced technologies.

    During the America’s Power Factuality Tour, we’ve been traveling around the country talking to the people who are behind the production of cleaner electricity from coal – including a stop at the Pleasant Prairie Power Plant in Wisconsin. They’ve installed a retrofit system that has reduced nitrogen oxide emissions by 90 percent and sulfur dioxide emissions by 95 percent.

    In addition, through a pilot project in partnership with Alstom Power, they’re developing the latest in carbon capture technology. Check out http://sn.im/factuality5 to get the facts on clean coal technology once and for all.

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