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Proposed windmill area teeming with birds

Ongoing studies of birds, marine mammals and sea turtles off the Jersey Shore have found an abundance of life in an area where hundreds of wind turbines could be spinning by 2020, participants in a public meeting said today. ..."We're trying to figure out where are the areas of sensitive habitat, if you will, areas that perhaps we should think twice about or avoid before we build something," he said. "The objective here is to try and steer these facilities to areas where impacts will be reduced."

Ongoing studies of birds, marine mammals and sea turtles off the Jersey Shore have found an abundance of life in an area where hundreds of wind turbines could be spinning by 2020, participants in a public meeting said today.

The studies, which will cost $4.9 million and are overseen by the state Department of Environmental Protection, are being done in waters up to 23 miles offshore from Seaside Park to Stone Harbor, according to officials.

A final report is due in December 2009, said Gary A. Buchanan, project manager in the DEP's Division of Science, Research and Technology.

"This is an important study in terms of overall ocean protection policy for the state as well," said Jeanne Herb, director of the DEP's Office of Policy, Planning and Science.

Several companies want to build wind farms miles off the coast, and the state Board of Public Utilities has voted to award a $4 million grant to Garden State Offshore Energy for a pilot wind turbine project.

The company proposes to build a 345.6-megawatt offshore wind facility southeast of Atlantic City and 16 miles from the coast, according to the BPU. The facility would generate enough electricity to power about 125,000 homes annually.

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Ongoing studies of birds, marine mammals and sea turtles off the Jersey Shore have found an abundance of life in an area where hundreds of wind turbines could be spinning by 2020, participants in a public meeting said today.

The studies, which will cost $4.9 million and are overseen by the state Department of Environmental Protection, are being done in waters up to 23 miles offshore from Seaside Park to Stone Harbor, according to officials.

A final report is due in December 2009, said Gary A. Buchanan, project manager in the DEP's Division of Science, Research and Technology.

"This is an important study in terms of overall ocean protection policy for the state as well," said Jeanne Herb, director of the DEP's Office of Policy, Planning and Science.

Several companies want to build wind farms miles off the coast, and the state Board of Public Utilities has voted to award a $4 million grant to Garden State Offshore Energy for a pilot wind turbine project.

The company proposes to build a 345.6-megawatt offshore wind facility southeast of Atlantic City and 16 miles from the coast, according to the BPU. The facility would generate enough electricity to power about 125,000 homes annually.

New Jersey's recently released energy master plan calls for offshore wind facilities that generate at least 1,000 megawatts of power by 2012 and at least 3,000 megawatts by 2020.

At 3.5 megawatts per wind turbine, 3,000 megawatts would come from about 850 wind turbines.

Through the studies, "we will have data and we will have our generic impact assessment, which will point out ... what we think are the potentially low, moderate and high impacts of any type of power facility out there," Buchanan said.

"We're trying to figure out where are the areas of sensitive habitat, if you will, areas that perhaps we should think twice about or avoid before we build something," he said. "The objective here is to try and steer these facilities to areas where impacts will be reduced."


Source: http://www.app.com/article/...

OCT 30 2008
http://www.windaction.org/posts/17702-proposed-windmill-area-teeming-with-birds
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