Though more consistent than such sources as wind energy and solar power, the Haw River hydroelectric project would produce full power only about 50 percent of the time, depending on the amount of water available.
Gamesa intends to sell the electricity generated by the turbine to recoup some of its design-and-build costs - which, Hopper estimated, could be as high as $20 million. The company aims to install the turbine next year.
As far as what the project could mean economically for Dare County, Hopper committed to nothing.
The project has been approved by the N.C. Utilities Commission. It would cost about $600 million to build. And construction must start before year end to qualify for a 30% federal tax break. The trouble has been that Iberdrola has not been able to secure a contract from any utility that serves North Carolina to buy the power the wind-farm would produce.
Pamlico County commissioners voted down a proposed tall structures ordinance Monday that would govern wind farms and communication towers.
The split 4-3 vote came after a public hearing ...While the wording covers towers, the gist of the ordinance was aimed at potential wind turbine farms, which were first proposed in Pamlico County this past August.
Prospects for a proposed wind energy farm in Eastern North Carolina are likely to remain iffy as long as naturalists and environmentalists have doubts about the project on account of its proximity to a wild bird refuge.
A complete version of the draft ordinance regulating wind turbines and communication towers was presented Thursday to the County Planning Commission, and while the ordinance now addresses noise, shadow flicker and more, there are still several steps to go before the draft is proposed to county commissioners.
Planning Commission Chairman Harry Archer said now that a significant amount of research has been done and an initial draft has been developed, comments obtained during three public comment meetings recently will be used to modify the draft.
Duke Energy Corp. said Thursday that it has dropped plans to install demonstration wind turbines on the North Carolina coast, saying the project was too small to be worth the cost.
Duke Energy Carolinas had planned to install three wind turbines in the Pamlico Sound under a collaboration with the University of North Carolina.
Duke Energy Carolinas is ramping up plans to generate some of its own renewable energy, with the company primarily warming up to solar power. ...Duke has been considering its options on owning alternative energy capacity or buying it. Chief Executive Jim Rogers says the corporation has decided its utilities will do both. ...Rogers says some of Duke's utilities will also own their own wind capacity. But he says wind energy is a less likely alternative in the Carolinas.
Duke may negotiate the purchase of wind energy here. But the only place wind farms would work in Duke's footprint is along the ridge lines in the western mountains and along the coast. "I'm not sure many environmentalists would salute that proposal," Rogers says.