Deepwater Wind's Block Island offshore wind farm marked the US' entry into the offshore wind industry, "paving the path for all of the wind energy offshore that's about to explode in the Northeast now," says Jerry Petros, a partner at Hinckley Allen and Deepwater's legal counsel. "It is unchartered water in the United States -- it's been done in Europe -- but finally someone took the lead and proved the proposition that you can do offshore wind here and do it effectively," he adds.
Vineyard Wind has selected WSP USA and Wood Thilsted to design the foundations for its 800-megawatt offshore wind project slated for the Massachusetts coast, according to the companies. "WSP and Wood Thilsted have taken a significant step toward becoming leading consultants in delivering US offshore wind energy projects," noted WSP Offshore Wind Manager Matthew Palmer.
Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy has achieved a cost-savings of 30% at its 28-megawatt Nissum Bredning offshore wind pilot project off the coast of Denmark, it said. Siemens Gamesa said the savings came from using concrete transition parts instead of steel components for the project's gravity-based jacket foundations.
Transportation Partners and Logistics has purchased two new cranes, one for its distribution center in Kansas and another for its facility in Oklahoma, designed to handle oversized components for the wind industry and other energy sources, says the firm. "As we look ahead to new opportunities and business ventures, these cranes will help us continue to focus on moving, storing and delivering our customers' equipment on time and without error," co-founder and President Jim Orr said.
The American Council on Renewable Energy has kicked off a $1 trillion capital campaign in an effort to raise that total for new renewable energy and grid-related projects by 2030. "With the $1T 2030 campaign, the investment community is charting a course to modernize America's energy infrastructure that will create massive economic opportunities over the next decade and beyond," said CEO and President Gregory Wetstone.
The House Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources will begin reviewing three bills that would accelerate offshore wind development off the coast of the US on Tuesday. The measures, if approved, would create a leasing schedule for projects in federal waters, establish a federal grant to support related careers and allow the Interior Department to regulate offshore energy projects in federal submerged lands, like Guam.
The administration of Maine Gov. Paul LePage is still gathering public comments on the effect of wind development on tourism and won't release the names of the individuals on its Maine Wind Energy Commission until the panel's first meeting, says Steve McGrath, director of the Governor's Energy Office. The first meeting will likely take place near the end of the summer or in early September, he adds.
Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory found that a gene responsible for amino acid production also helps regulate gene function involved in lignin production, which could be used to improve production of biofuels and biobased materials. "While we do not know how this new function came about in poplar, we now know that this enzyme exhibits the same behavior in other plant species," said researcher Wellington Muchero.
Oil refiners cannot be forced to blend additional biofuels into gasoline to compensate for volumes exempted through waivers authorized under the Renewable Fuel Standard, the Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday. "Binding precedent holds that agencies can only impose retroactive obligations if Congress has given them the authority to do so," said EPA spokeswoman Molly Block.
A report commissioned by the Department of Defense cited synthetic biology's ability to re-create known viruses in the laboratory as one of the biggest concerns with the field. "There are certain capabilities that may not be possible now, but in those cases we tried to identify what the bottlenecks or barriers might be that, if overcome, would enable those to be more possible," said Michael Imperiale, who led the committee that studied the matter.
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