NORTH CHARLESTON — The Southeast coast has potential for offshore wind energy but the industry faces challenges, including a regulatory environment that offers little incentive for developing such power, attendees at the Southeastern Coastal Wind Conference were told Wednesday.
Speakers also said there needs to be more research on offshore conditions to determine the best kind of turbines that will hold up to the winds and waves of tropical storms and hurricanes.
“Offshore wind in the Southeast is an enormous opportunity,” said Brian O’Hara, president of the Southeastern Coastal Wind Coalition which is sponsoring the day-and-a-half conference.
The coalition is a consortium of manufacturers, researchers and government agencies working to promote wind development from Virginia to Florida. The group says about 60 percent of the potential offshore wind resources that can be tapped on the East Coast are between Virginia and Georgia.
“I would say the Southeast got a little later start in looking at offshore compared to the rest of the East Coast, but it’s quickly catching up,” he said. “We have a different approach down here with a regulated utility market.”
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Chris Bagley, Staff Writer- Triangle Business Journal
Alternative energy has become a sizeable industry in North Carolina, with estimated full-time employment of more than 15,000, and it also has become a steady source of customers for banks.
North Carolina-based banks put tens of millions of dollars into solar and other alternative energy projects, mostly in the last couple of years.
Raleigh-based First Citizens Bank (Nasdaq: FCNCA) has put a total of about $12 million into nine solar-energy developments since mid-2011, spokesman Frank Smith says.
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John Downey, Senior Staff Writer- Charlotte Business Journal
North Carolina remains the Southeast’s hot spot for solar development, according to the most recent figures compiled by SNL Energy.
But interest in solar projects has rapidly ramped up in Florida, SNL says. And with the help of some particularly large projects, the Sunshine State could be neck-and-neck with North Carolina if all currently planned projects in both states are built.
In an article based on figures as of June 3, SNL’s Charlotte Cox reports that solar development had its best first quarter in U.S. history.
Cox reports that 297 megawatts worth of utility-scale solar power projects were built in the country in the first three months of the year. That is more than twice the 122 megawatts built in the first quarter of 2012.
However, it was well below the 794 megawatts installed in the fourth quarter of 2012, which was the largest quarter ever for the industry.
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RALEIGH, NC - The NC Sierra Club today joined Governor McCrory in celebrating June as Solar Energy Month.
“North Carolina has become a clean energy leader in the Southeast,” said Molly Diggins, state director of the North Carolina Sierra Club. “With leadership and supportive policies, our state is poised to become a national leader.”
To coincide with Governor McCrory’s announcement, the NC Sierra Club has launched a campaign to encourage North Carolina to become a national leader in clean energy. The ‘First In Solar’ campaign will run the course of the month, and engage North Carolinians through events, solar installation tours, and social media outreach.
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When you think of North Carolina you probably think of barbecue, sweet tea and ACC basketball. Now, it's time to add solar energy to the list! At our current pace, we will be ranked 4th in the US in solar energy by the end of 2013! While many sectors of the economy are struggling, clean energy is booming! In an effort to recognize the contributions of solar energy to North Carolina, Governor Pat McCrory has declared June 2013 Solar Energy Month!
When you think of North Carolina you probably think of barbecue, sweet tea and ACC basketball. Now, it's time to add solar energy to the list! At our current pace, we will be ranked 4th in the US in solar energy by the end of 2013! While many sectors of the economy are struggling, clean energy is booming!
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For Immediate Release
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For Immediate Release
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By John Murawski
Meet the bill with nine lives – and twice as many votes cast against it.
Lawmakers on Wednesday could once again attempt to end a state renewables policy whose proponents say has elevated North Carolina to the nation’s fifth-largest developer of solar farms.
Last week, lawmakers defeated the measure 18-13 in a House committee. At the time proponents of solar power and renewables celebrated a rare victory.
On Tuesday, Rep. Mike Hager, the bill’s sponsor, revived it for another vote.
Even by the standards of North Carolina’s partisan legislature, the push to undo the 6-year-old energy policy marks unusual determination to salvage a struggling bill.
For their part, advocates of solar power and renewables are now bracing for the potential of esoteric parliamentary maneuvers that are used on rare occasion to advance controversial bills for last-minute votes.
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