(Andrew Follett, The Daily Caller News Foundation) – Offshore wind turbines may generate green energy, but they use a lot more oil than proponents like to admit.
Just installing the foundation of a single offshore turbine can consume 18,857 barrels of marine fuel during construction, according to calculations published by Forbes Wednesday. Offshore wind farms often have over 100 wind turbines, meaning that building them requires almost 2 million barrels of fuel just to power the ships involved in construction.
“You can’t even construct or operate offshore wind turbines without oil,” Chris Warren, a spokesman for the free-market Institute for Energy Research, told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “For decades, we have been told that wind, solar, and other so-called ‘green’ sources are the future, and yet these sources remain expensive, intermittent, and unreliable despite government mandates and subsidies. Offshore wind, in particular, remains one of the most expensive sources of electricity that exists.”
The Long Island-New York City Offshore Wind Collaborative will cost $1 billion to build and generate roughly 200 megawatts of electricity, enough to provide power to between 40,000 and 64,000 homes — depending on how much the wind blows over the course of the year.
The wind farm’s power will cost around $25,000 for every home it powers, according to Daily Caller News Foundation calculations. The first American offshore wind farm in Block Island, Rhode Island will cost $17,600 per home it powers.
The extremely high cost of offshore wind apparently doesn’t worry environmentalists and progressives because, as Salon.com says about the project, “it’s the precedent that counts.” The costs attributed to both the Block Island and the Long Island wind farms are just to build the turbines, not to operate them.
Despite the extremely high cost, federal officials want to power a whopping 23 million homes with offshore wind by the year 2050. Offshore wind is so pricey that early investors, like Germany, plan to stop building new turbines to lower the costs of electricity and prop up the existing power grid.
Offshore wind power is so expensive because installing and maintaining any kind of infrastructure on the water is extremely difficult. The salt water of the ocean is incredibly corrosive and makes operating such facilities difficult and expensive. Electricity is so comparatively cheap in most parts of the country that offshore wind isn’t generally necessary.
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