Draft is headed for Watauga commissioners
Library from North Carolina
An important variable is how much power can be generated using alternative forms of energy such as solar and wind, and other sources that are either renewable or cheaply available. North Carolinians need an independent evaluation of the potential of these energy alternatives. The good news is that state utility regulators have commissioned one.
Supporters of sustainable energy are supporting a county ordinance that would allow for development of windmills while keeping true to the intent of a state law that limits development on ridge tops.
And, while I agree with Mr. Shutkin that wind power, as a source of clean and renewable energy, should and will play a role in our future energy portfolio, its role will necessarily be small because of its fundamental limitation as an energy source: wind power is ‘intermittent’, i.e. it provides energy only when the wind blows, and, as such, wind power is a source of supplemental, not ‘base load’ energy.
"In a number of European nations, offshore wind farms are well established. However, in the United States, the concept is relatively new and an established approval process for offshore wind farm permitting does not yet exist. This document identifies the approval process one would need to take in order to site an offshore wind farm in coastal waters of the U.S., particularly North Carolina." Editor's Note: The U.S. Minerals Management Service, a branch of the Interior Department, has review responsibility for offshore projects per the 2005 Energy Policy Act passed in May 2005.
Hager, a former Duke Energy engineer beginning his second term in the House, argues the mandate unfairly forces utility customers to subsidize renewable energy, which costs more than traditional forms. He says that runs against state policy ordering utilities to provide “least cost” electricity.