Thursday, March 26, 2009

Texas News: Wind industry anticipates boom with many job openings

LubbockOnline is featuring an article about Wind Energy in the Panhandle, quoting our very own Ken Starcher:

The title of Wednesday's alternative-energy seminar was "What's in the Wind?" The answer seemed to be "jobs."

Most presentations focused on staffing an anticipated boom of wind farms, assuming credit markets get stronger and the Public Utilities Commission makes a final decision on which companies will build transmission lines.

"Wind is going to grow where there has only been cattle and cactus in the past," said Ken Starcher, director of West Texas A&M's Alternative Energy Institute. "In four years we're going to have wires strung through the Panhandle."

The focus is on the large demand from cities downstate served by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas grid.

"They don't want any more coal plants there, but they want the lights to work," Starcher said. "If we don't do it with conventional plants, we'll need to use renewables, conservation or efficiency."

Click here to read the full article.

Local News: Dr. Nelson's Book On Sale

AEI's Dr. Vaughn Nelson's book, Wind Energy: Renewable Energy and the Environment is available for sale at CRCPress Online.

The book is selling for $107.96.

Book Summary:
Due to the mounting demand for energy and increasing population of the world, switching from nonrenewable fossil fuels to other energy sources is not an option—it is a necessity. Focusing on a cost-effective option for the generation of electricity, Wind Energy: Renewable Energy and the Environment covers all facets of wind energy and wind turbines.

The book begins by outlining the history of wind energy, before providing reasons to shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy. After examining the characteristics of wind, such as shear, power potential, and turbulence, it discusses the measurement and siting of individual wind turbines and wind farms. The text then presents the aerodynamics, operation, control, applications, and types of wind turbines. The author also describes the design of wind turbines and system performance for single wind turbines, water pumping, village systems, and wind farms. In addition, he explores the wind industry from its inception in the 1970s to today as well as the political and economic factors regarding the adoption of wind as an energy source.

Since energy cannot be created nor destroyed—only transformed to another form—we are not encountering an energy crisis. Rather, we face an energy dilemma in the use of finite energy resources and their effects on the environment, primarily due to the burning of fossil fuels. Wind Energy explores one of the most economical solutions to alleviate our energy problems.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Texas News: Texas selects developers to build transmission lines to tap wind regions

Breaking news from SNL Interactive:

Texas regulators on Jan. 29 awarded more than a dozen electric transmission developers shares of an approximately $5 billion plan to build transmission lines between wind-rich regions in west Texas and the panhandle and major load centers.

The decision, made by the Public Utility Commission of Texas at its open meeting, parcels out about 2,900 miles of high-voltage transmission projects, which the commission expects to support nearly 18,500 MW of wind generation.

Click here for more information. Click here to download the PDF map mentioned in the article.

Friday, October 3, 2008

National News: Gases on auction block

In today’s Amarillo Globe News, there is an Associated Press story about the nation’s first auction of pollution credits aimed at curbing global warming.

Auction proceeds will go toward energy conservation and renewable energy programs in each of the 10 participating states: New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Vermont.

The program aims to hold carbon dioxide emissions steady through 2014 and then gradually reduce them; it is widely viewed as a model for future programs nationally and around the globe.

“It’s historic,” said Lance Pierce, climate program director of the Union of Concerned Scientists. “The carbon markets have arrived in the United States. And carbon markets, if designed correctly, hold the promise for development of cleaner energy … and reductions in global warming pollution that benefit consumers, businesses and the environment, as well.”

Click here to read more about the greenhouse gas sales.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Local News: Panhandle wind to generate power for ERCOT

There’s a new segment from High Plains Public Radio out about Panhandle wind power and ERCOT. Click here to listen.

The segment is part of the Regional News Report by Mark Haslett, who did an interview with AEI’s Ken Starcher earlier this month about how wind power might affect afterlife. Click here to hear that and check out HPPR for more local wind energy news!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Texas News: Texas approves major wind power project

Check out this article from My Way News AP about wind power in Texas.

In what experts say is the biggest investment in the clean and renewable energy in U.S. history, utility officials in the Lone Star State gave preliminary approval Thursday to a $4.9 billion plan to build new transmission lines to carry wind-generated electricity from gusty West Texas to urban areas like Dallas.

“People think about oil wells and football in Texas, but in 10 years they’ll look back and say this was a brilliant thing to do,” said Patrick Woodson, vice president of E.On Climate & Renewables North America, which has about 1,200 megawatts of wind projects already in use or on the drawing board in Texas.

Texas is already the national leader in wind power, generating about 5,000 megawatts. But wind-energy advocates say the lack of transmission lines has kept a lot of that power from being put to use and has hindered the building of more turbines.

Click here to read more.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Local News: Mike Pool's Solar Cooker

From Blogger Pictures

Today, we had a visit from Mike Pool who has had his solar cookers featured in Back Home Magazine’s June edition. (The article starts on page 42!)

His solar fryer can be seen here.