Denise Goldberg's blog

Sunday, May 02, 2010

The power of the wind

Last week brought approval by the interior secretary for Cape Wind, an offshore wind farm that has been going through an approval process for the past nine years. Groups have been jumping forward, protesting the presence of 130 wind turbines five miles offshore. While there may be some legitimate concerns, most of them seem to be of the "not in my backyard" variety.

The wind farm is projected to supply 75% of the power used by Cape Cod and the Islands.

I still remember the first time I saw a working wind farm. It was many many years ago, in the hills of California. I thought it was a beautiful sight.

My wishes are for the wind farm to be built. And when it is up and running, I hope there is some way to travel across the water to view it.

A few interesting facts from the Cape Wind site:

The towers, from the surface of the water to the center of the blades, will be 258 feet tall. The lowest blade tip height will be 75 feet above the surface of the water and the highest blade tip height will be 440 feet above the surface of the water. The base of the wind turbine towers will be 16 feet in diameter.

The wind turbines will be arrayed in a grid pattern of parallel rows. Within a row, the wind turbines will be .34 nautical miles apart (about 6 football fields), the rows will be .54 nautical miles apart (about 9 football fields).

From the closest beach on Cape Cod, in clear conditions, the wind turbines will appear one half-inch above the horizon.
From the Boston Globe: Interior secretary approves Cape Wind plan, nation's first offshore wind farm

For information on the project, jump to the Cape Wind site.