The New York Times is hyping a sensational announcement by Mayor Bloomberg to site windmills across New York city on buildings, bridges and other locations on land and sea, including Long Island Sound. Apparently Bloomberg's aides are asleep at the switch. It was just one year ago that the Long Island Power Authority cancelled ambitious plans to construct a 140 megawatt wind project 3 miles off the south shore of Long Island. The project's estimated costs had ballooned to more than $800 million including transmission lines, making it financially unfeasible, even with huge government subsidies. Siting windmills offshore is deceptively attractive. An article last year in the German magazine Der Spiegel spoke directly to this point. Citing two of the leading wind turbine makers, German company Enercon and the Danish firm Vestas
"Many constructors of such offshore facilities in other countries have run into difficulties. Danish company and world market leader Vestas, for example, had to remove the turbines from an entire wind park along Denmark's western coast in 2004 because the turbines were not sufficiently resilient to withstand the local sea and weather conditions. Similar problems were encountered off the British coast in 2005.
"German wind turbine giant Enercon, for its part, considers the risks associated with offshore wind power generation too great, says Enercon spokesman Andreas Düser says. While the growth potential is tempting, he says, the company does not want to lose its good standing on the high seas."
It appears unless there are dramatic engineering improvements to the turbines, let alone the inherent unreliability of the wind, effectively excluding it as source for a base load source that wind power is not viable without the heavy government subsidies now extended by the Europeans and Americans.
With the buffoons at the NYT covering him, Mayor Bloomberg can get away with making these ridiculous public relations announcements that are completely divorced from reality.