President Obama to Release Federal Waters to Generate Electricity

Last week, President Obama marked Earth Day by announcing a new initiative to lease federal waters for the purpose of generating electricity from wind and ocean currents.

photo credit: ClearlyAmbiguousCrashing Waves

Crashing Waves

The president visited a wind energy plant in Newton, IA as part of his exploration into “a new era of energy exploration.” Wind power can generate 20 percent of the country’s electricity by 2030 and support 250,000 jobs, Obama said, asserting that the country does not have to choose between protecting the environment and expanding the economy. That the real choice is between “prosperity and decline.”

A large aspect of stimulus funding is gradually beginning to filter down to renewable energy companies. Various cities and counties are already planning for this new energy future. San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, is one of the first to take advantage of the Pacific coast’s natural ocean waves by applying for federal permission to develop a large scale ocean wave energy project off the coast of San Francisco.

The U.S. Department of Interior recently published a report highlighting the information currently available regarding the nature and scope of energy resources on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), including renewable energy. The program to lease OCS area for the projects to produce electricity from wind, wave and ocean currents will be run through the Interior Department.

“It is estimated that if we fully pursue our potential for wind energy on land and offshore, wind can generate as much as 20 percent of our electricity by 2030, creating as many as 250,000 jobs in the process,” said the president.

In literature and popular culture, the blowing winds have always been associated with fickle behavior and a lack of dependability. it is interesting to now how they are now perhaps responsible for the shape of things to come!

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