Fresh on the heals of NYC’s announcement for a clean energy project at Freshkills Park, a study just released by New York State and NOAA aims to make off-shore wind development become a reality sooner than later. The study reveals environmentally sensitive areas as well as commercial shipping lanes with the goal of helping wind developers quickly determine good sites to install wind farms without having to wait for a long environmental review for each project. And since New York is hot on the trail for developing substantial renewable energy projects, the study could not come too soon.

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The East Coast has ideal conditions for wind power not too far from shore, and it is already the focus of substantial infrastructure investments with the goal of creating a renewable energy super grid. NOAA and New York spent two years indentifying environmentally rich areas and commercial shipping lanes to help developers hone in on the best placement for wind projects. The study revels deep sea coral beds, boidivesity regions, and seabird territories to help redline potential sites for environmental review and to “provide technical assistance to New York as they assess and integrate ecological and human use information, and identify significant offshore wildlife habitats.”

The study also maps commercial shipping traffic to hopefully avoid commercial stress resulting from proposed wind farms. NOAA is viewing this as a prototype study to help move wind energy projects along the permit process at a greater speed. With heavy weights like Google, Co-ops, and local governments vying to make the resource of wind energy a reality on the eastern seaboard, the study is another key part of making large scale clean power a reality.

+ NOAA Offshore Wind Power Report

Via New York Times