The Cape Wind Project

Cape Wind is a proposal by Energy Management, Inc., a for-profit corporation, to build 130 wind turbines on Horseshoe Shoal, a shallow area in Nantucket Sound, slightly over 5 miles off the southern coast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts.7 With average wind conditions the project, once built, would generate an average of 170 megawatts of electricity, with a maximum of 458 megawatts. The average production would be about 75 % of the 258 mega-watts normally used by Cape Cod and the islands of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket. Each turbine would be on a tower 16 feet in diameter and 258 feet tall, with the tip of the blade, when vertical, extending 440 feet above the surface of the water.

The wind farm would be located in federal waters. It would be connected to the mainland, and to the national electric grid, by two 115 kilovolt cables. These cables would pass through waters regulated by the state of Massachusetts.

Cape Wind is the first major alternative energy proposal for Cape Cod, but not the only one. In May 2006 Patriot Renewables, LLC, proposed a 90 to 120 turbine wind farm to be sited in Buzzards Bay;8 and in June 2006 Oceana Energy Company announced that it is considering Vineyard Sound for the site of a tidal power plant.9

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable energy is energy that is generated from sunlight, rain, tides, geothermal heat and wind. These sources are naturally and constantly replenished, which is why they are deemed as renewable. The usage of renewable energy sources is very important when considering the sustainability of the existing energy usage of the world. While there is currently an abundance of non-renewable energy sources, such as nuclear fuels, these energy sources are depleting. In addition to being a non-renewable supply, the non-renewable energy sources release emissions into the air, which has an adverse effect on the environment.

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