Google Splashes Into Offshore Wind Power Infrastructure

googlewindpowerinvestment

Google Splashes Into Offshore Wind Power Infrastructure
 
Google has announced a major investment in the USA’s Atlantic Wind Connection (AWC) backbone.
 
The Atlantic Wind Connection (AWC) backbone will run nearly 500 kilometres from off the coast from New Jersey to Virginia. The line will allow for up to 6,000MW of offshore wind turbines; enough for the power requirements of approximately 1.9 million households.
 
Google says the Mid-Atlantic region provides massive offshore wind potential in relatively shallow waters that extend miles out to sea, allowing for wind turbines to be installed virtually out-of-sight from land.
 
The Atlantic Wind Connection will allow for rapid scaling up offshore wind power in the region. Without it, developers would need to construct individual radial transmission lines from each offshore wind farm to the shore, meaning additional time and cost and making balancing the grid more difficult.
 
Google is investing 37.5% of the equity in this initial development stage which is reported to cost USD $5 billion.
 
A recent study released by Oceana found that investment in offshore wind power in the USA would be more cost effective, generate more jobs and be better for the environment and ocean than offshore oil and gas exploration and development.
 
Oceana highlighted the potential of the Atlantic Coast; saying 127 gigawatts of wind power could be installed, creating  up to 212,000 jobs annually. Overall, Oceana said offshore wind could produce nearly 30% more electricity than offshore oil and gas resources combined while costing tens of billions of dollars less to tap.
 
Earlier this year, Google announced its first direct investment in large scale renewable energy projects; being two wind farms situated in the North Dakota plains and in July, the company announced a purchase agreement with a 114 megawatt wind farm in Iowa.