Upcoming: Offshore Windpower 2013 Conference and Exhibition in October
Wind energy? We're big fans - and we're excited to be sponsoring the American Wind Energy Association's upcoming Offshore Windpower 2013 Conference and Exhibition this October in Providence, Rhode Island.
Wind power is the fastest-growing source of power on the planet. In the U.S. alone, there are more than 50 gigawatts of installed wind capacity - enough to provide electricity to 13 million American homes. The Department of Energy even predicts that we can get 20 percent of our power as a nation from wind energy alone by 2030.
Ten states are well on their way, already getting 10 percent of their electricity from wind power, including Iowa and South Dakota, which are topping out at 20 percent. Twenty percent of our country being powered by wind energy would result in the creation of approximately 800,000 jobs, alongside increased property tax revenues and new payments to rural landowners. In addition to the economic benefits, wind energy is much safer and cleaner for us and the planet, compared to more traditional, dirtier sources of energy, such as coal or oil.
We're particularly excited for the potential of offshore wind. Offshore wind is stronger and more reliable than land-based wind farms, and our wind resources are greatest along our coasts and the Great Lakes -- close to our nation's population centers and existing transmission resources. In fact, the Department of Energy reported that the U.S. has up to 4,000 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind along our coasts and the Great Lakes - four times as much as the capacity of every U.S. power plant in operation today combined.
Though we may not be able to harness all of this massive resource, even a small percentage would greatly reduce our dependence on dirty fossil fuels. Meanwhile, Europe has already been harnessing the power of offshore wind for more than twenty years, proving that offshore wind is possible in the U.S. today.
At AWEA's Offshore Windpower 2013 Conference and Exhibition, industry leaders will come together to discuss how the offshore market is forming in the U.S. Participants will have the opportunity to engage with manufacturers, suppliers, project developers, policy-makers, utility representatives, and thought-leaders from across the wind energy industry. Each day of the conference will also feature General Sessions during which attendees can hear from high-level government officials, offshore wind industry visionaries, leading companies in the offshore wind market, and offshore wind developers giving their latest insights into upcoming projects.
If you want to learn more, visit www.offshorewindexpo.org or register for the conference here -- you might just learn something about wind energy that will blow you away!
-- Vanessa Pierce, Beyond Coal Campaign Eastern Regional Director