The Obama Administration will invest $180 million in innovative offshore wind projects over the next six years as part of an initiative to promote a renewable energy sector that in the U.S. remains largely untapped.
The Department of Energy will select four projects developing “next generation” technologies that will achieve large cost reductions over existing wind energy technologies. U.S. officials hope these demonstration projects will help overcome some of the critical challenges facing the emerging industry, including installation of newer turbines, connecting to the power grid, and navigating the complex permitting process.
While energy analysts project that U.S. offshore wind resources have the potential to provide more than 4,000GW of wind energy, a litany of financial and political obstacles has slowed the development of several projects. “These investments are critical to ensuring that America remains competitive in this growing global industry that can drive new manufacturing, construction, installation and operation jobs across the country,” Energy Secretary Steven Chu said in an announcement.
Article appearing courtesy Yale Environment 360.