Professional Engineers Of North Carolina

FALL 2014

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21 Fall 2014 the Professional Engineer total East Coast resource potential. In addition, the Energy Information Adminis- tration estimates that South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and Virginia are four of the fi ve lowest construction-cost states for off shore wind. T is could be a signifi cant competitive advantage for the region in attracting supply chain jobs. However, despite its massive scale and 20-plus-year track record in Europe, off shore wind is still a new industry to the United States. Construction for the fi rst projects is likely to start in Massachusetts and Rhode Island in 2015. T e Southeast should see some demonstration-scale projects off shore in the next few years, but large commercial scale development will take a bit more time. The future of wind energy So far, wind energy has not played a signifi cant role in the Southeast; that will change soon. Nationally, wind energy is at historically low costs. Technology advance- ments and increased scale will continue to drive that downward cost trend for the foreseeable future. Improvements in effi ciency and energy capture also are increasing productivity and making new areas, such as the Southeast, economically viable. Several land-based projects in North Carolina are under development, and developers are actively exploring sites in several other Southeastern states. (See price comparison chart on page 18.) Finally, virtually all regulators and utility planners agree that there will be an increased need for zero-emission energy sources for some time to come. Wind has proven its ability to deliver clean energy economically and at a large scale. No energy source is perfect, and we should never put all of our energy eggs in one basket. But as we strive for a balanced energy portfolio, wind has a signifi cant role to play delivering clean, broad-reaching and stable-priced energy for many years to come. Professional Civil Engineering Consulting, Design and Project Management Services Fredric T. Royal, PE, CFM (919) 369-8397 Royal Water Resources PLLC IBERDROLA RENEWABLES Brian O'Hara is the President and Founder of the Southeastern Coastal Wind Coalition.

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