Thursday, December 10, 2009

How offshore wind won in Delaware

Two developers hoping to build off-shore, wind-energy projects.
Both seeking public acceptance and local government approval.
In two different states--Massachusetts and Delaware.

Today, Delaware's project is moving toward construction.
Massachusetts' project--dead in the water for years--is only now inching forward.

The difference between the two?

Willett Kempton, an associate professor at the University of Delaware, says Bluewater Wind was successful in getting public opinion on its side because of the argument it used to illustrate the value of its energy-generating technology.

Kempton told an audience last week at an American Wind Energy Association conference that the Massachusetts project got bogged down by the argument that offshore turbines would ruin the view of Cape Cod residents and vacationers.

In Delaware, he said, Bluewater Wind summed up its approach to energy production as "wind versus coal."

And, therein, lies a valuable lesson for developers, lobbyists and public relations practitioners. To win: Frame your argument carefully.

Aaron Nathans provides the interesting details in a report today in the (Wilmington) News-Journal.

Utility bets on offshore turbines
Plan Advances to Build Wind Farm Off New York
Maryland picks NRG Bluewater to supply wind power
NRG of Princeton to supply energy to Maryland
Delaware: First to sign and the first to spin?
Will NRG save Bluewater's wind projects?
Offshore Rhode Island wind power at a dead calm

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