Articles filed under General from Delaware
But if Bluewater's offshore wind farm gets built, it may have both to thank for keeping the project afloat. Bluewater lost its financial backing when its Australian parent company, Babcock and Brown, was ravaged by debt and the global economic meltdown. The wind farm developer missed a critical deadline this summer to provide a letter of credit to Delmarva, which has a 25-year contract with Bluewater to buy power from turbines off the coast of Rehoboth Beach.
Bluewater Wind expects a controlling interest in the firm to be sold in the next few weeks, and sources familiar with the plan say the company is in serious negotiations to sell to NRG Energy Inc. In selling a majority stake in the offshore wind farm company, Bluewater would get the immediate financial help it needs to keep its projects moving forward, and the backing of a large energy company that should ease the financing of billion-dollar wind farms.
Delmarva Power's four power purchase agreements with wind developers should begin paying dividends by the end of the year, with the first clean-energy electrons flowing to the state later this fall. One land-based wind farm under contract to the local utility could start sending electricity to Delaware by year's end, and another in western Maryland could get its permit soon despite concerns the turbines could harm endangered species. That project has an easier path to approval thanks to a controversial new law that exempts smaller wind farm projects from an extensive environmental vetting.
Bluewater Wind expects to name a new investor within two months, pumping badly needed capital behind its plans to build a wind farm off Delaware's southern coast. Peter Mandelstam, president of the offshore power development company, said he is confident a deal will be completed within 60 days with a new ownership partner and that Babcock and Brown, its embattled Australian financier, would be out of the project by the end of the year.
Many residents of this quaint beach town say they are all for green energy, but when Bluewater Wind officials came to town with a concept plan to bring the power cable from their proposed offshore wind farm under their beach, boardwalk and bandstand, they had one really big question: What's in it for the town?
A project that could involve the town in the Bluewater Wind offshore wind farm project has been proposed, and officials and residents are looking at possible plans with careful eyes. Bluewater is planning to construct a wind farm several miles off the coast of Rehoboth Beach in the coming years.
Delaware may want an offshore wind farm, and the idea has won more confidence than any other similar plan in the nation. But the company that has promised it has a few challenges to overcome, not the least of which is financing. Can Bluewater find its sea legs?
Bluewater Wind says it has been given the green light to put up a testing station off the Rehoboth Beach coast, which would be the first physical manifestation of its planned offshore wind farm. Bluewater President Peter Mandelstam said Wednesday the Department of the Interior and the state of Delaware have told Bluewater it has met the requirements to construct a meteorological tower.
The Department of the Interior has given Bluewater Wind approval to build a weather testing station off Rehoboth Beach. Bluewater Wind announced Wednesday that it has approval to build two meteorological towers off Rehoboth Beach and New Jersey's coast.
The Bluewater offshore wind farm project's future remains tied to the search for an investor, and does not sink or swim with the fate of Babcock & Brown Ltd., its publicly traded parent company, the company and observers said. On Friday, bankers took control of Babcock & Brown Ltd., after investors voted down a plan to restructure the company's debt. The development further focused attention on the viability of the Bluewater Wind project here.
Delaware's Bluewater Wind will have a tough time raising the $1 billion it needs to build an offshore energy farm now that its principal backer has been financially crippled, experts said Monday. Investment groups that might have made a play for Bluewater in years past have disappeared or are "teetering on nationalization," said Brian Yerger, an alternative energy analyst and researcher with Jesup & Lamont Securities Corp. "The economics are going to have to work out perfectly right for somebody to come in and spend probably $1 billion plus" to build the wind farm."
The toppling of a major international investment firm left Delaware's offshore wind project in uncertain waters Sunday, although one project official said he was optimistic that the Bluewater Wind venture will survive. Babcock & Brown, an Australia-based company that owns "virtually all" of Bluewater Wind, announced Friday it had agreed to a controlled breakup and liquidation of the company, which was once worth $12 billion, with outright collapse and bankruptcy still an imminent threat. ...Babcock & Brown acquired the owners of the Delaware offshore wind project in September 2007, a deal that Bluewater said would give the the wind company the "commitment, strength, reliability and financial backing" needed to build a wind farm off Rehoboth Beach. Those assurances began cracking almost immediately as the global economic crisis took root and spread.
Wind farm developer Bluewater Wind says permitting for the Delaware offshore wind park is moving ahead and the project is squarely on schedule to produce power by 2012. The size of the wind farm has yet to be determined, and Bluewater Wind says it is unclear if power will be produced beyond 2037.
Delaware's major renewable energy project -- the Bluewater Wind offshore wind farm -- is still a go, even as credit markets tighten company officials say. That's true even given significant debt problems faced by Bluewater's Australian parent company, Babcock and Brown.
Continued debt problems have dragged down the stock value of Bluewater Wind's Australian parent company to around one Australian dollar a share, far from its $31.08 a share value a year ago. But leaders of Babcock & Brown said Wednesday the firm's debt issues, and the current freeze-up of global credit markets, will not derail Bluewater's plan to build a wind farm off Rehoboth Beach.
Delmarva Power's land-based wind farm contracts are scheduled to get a vote at the Public Service Commission today, and the commission staff has recommended approving a 20-year deal between Delmarva and Synergics for a maximum of 100 megawatts of power from a farm in western Maryland. The commission staff also said the PSC should approve a 15-year deal with AES for a maximum of 70 megawatts of wind power from a project in north-central Pennsylvania.
Blue H's 328-foot-tall wind turbine is different from the offshore generators that have sparked opposition from U.S. coastal residents. Because it sits atop pontoons, this turbine can operate in water farther from shore, where winds are stronger and more reliable - and where it's not visible from land. ...Linowes said that those opposing onshore wind projects - which often are gigantic schemes spanning tens of thousands of acres - welcome proposals to place turbines out in the water. She calls current onshore turbines "dinosaurs" and says she finds Blue H's idea appealing because it shows "that we should look to new technology rather than bigger land-based turbines," she said.
H. Russell Frisby Jr., who was chairman of the Maryland Public Service Commission from 1995 to 1998 and now represents the advocacy group Marylanders for Reliable Power, said Friday at the Maryland Association of Counties summer conference that the clock is ticking for Maryland to free up enough capacity to meet the state's growing demand, and residents need to realize that.
Maryland has opened energy supply talks with a Delaware offshore wind developer, hoping to tap into green energy from an expanded wind farm off Rehoboth Beach. State Energy Administration officials in Maryland said Wednesday that options now under review include using Bluewater's proposed turbine complex to power all of Maryland's state and county buildings, and possibly drawing energy from a second wind farm that could be built off Ocean City. ... "This is in its infancy. At first blush, I would say: Build it in Delaware, let us look at it, let us see how it looks and what kind of problems you have first," Hall said. Neither of Bluewater's talks in Maryland and New Jersey currently involve forced contracts or costly, regulator-driven deals of the type used in Delaware to produce the Delmarva contract.
The Delaware Electric Cooperative and its 11 sister co-ops have signed an agreement to buy power from a planned land-based wind farm in Pennsylvania. The Old Dominion Electric Cooperative has signed a 15-year agreement with AES Corp. for power from a planned wind farm straddling Tioga and Bradford counties in north-central Pennsylvania. It is named the Armenia Mountain Wind Energy Project. The purchase includes half the power and half the renewable energy credits from the facility, which is expected to produce between 100 and 140 megawatts of power when the wind is blowing hardest, the company reported.