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03 Apr 2009 05:04:13

All US electricity demands could be met by wind power

All US electricity demands could be met by wind power
Offshore wind turbines could meet all of the US' electricity needs, according to a report from the country's interior department.

Speaking at a renewable energy conference, secretary of the interior Ken Salazar said wind off the coasts of the lower 48 states had the capacity to generate a total of 1,900 gigawatts.

"The wind potential off the coasts of the lower 48 states actually exceeds our entire US electricity demand," he said.

While he was optimistic about the potential for a clean energy future, he also noted that "the realities of climate change are upon us" and highlighted a range of problems to which wind energy could be a solution.

"Our dependence on foreign oil is a national security problem, an environmental security problem, and an economic security problem," said Mr Salazar.

The report claims that the commercially feasible locations for wind power developments given current technologies could provide at least a fifth of almost all of the electricity needed in the country's 28 coastal states.



Discussion Thread  

09 Apr 2009

It is tragic that such reports do not recognize the difference between megawatts and megawatt-HOURS. Electric energy comes when a generating plant (coal, nuclear, wind, etc) is OPERATING, so the capacity of a plant (megawatts) does NOT indicate what energy it generates. Wind plants on the average have a 32% duty cycle, while coal plants have a 95% duty cycle. Thus it takes THREE (repeat THREE) wind plants of a given capacity to generate the electric energy of ONE (repeat ONE) coal plant. The U.S. Seceretary of Interior should know this. E.G. Meyer

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