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The Great Lakes Wind Energy Vision
The initial focus of the Task Force is examining the opportunity of offshore wind energy. Northeast Ohio’s unique location on the windy shores of shallow Lake Erie offers the essential elements for pursuing a wind energy strategy. In addition to natural resources, the Cuyahoga region possesses unique industrial specializations positioned to advance and take advantage of the synergies of off- and onshore wind industries.
The vision of the Great Lakes Energy Development Task Force is to establish the Cuyahoga region as the hub for a wind energy cluster and capture a large portion of the future economic potential in research and manufacturing.
The Task Force aims to grow local businesses related to the wind sector, expand employment opportunities, attract wind-related businesses and grow the wind energy research and development base within the Great Lakes Region.
Wind Energy Press Conference
Wind Energy Development Video
Great Lakes Wind Research Center
The Great Lakes Energy Development Task Force issued a report in February of 2007 that presented the concept for creating a wind energy cluster in Northeast Ohio. The report called for the creation of a Great Lakes Wind Research Center. The Center includes both an off-shore wind energy generating demonstration project of several turbines in Lake Erie to produce 5-20 megawatts, as well as a research center for the development and monitoring of new technologies and designs optimized for the challenges of offshore applications.
Great Lakes Wind Research Center Objectives:
- Demonstrate to the economic and engineering viability of offshore wind generation in Lake Erie and across the Great Lakes more generally,
- Reduce the institutional and knowledge barriers, and thereby reduce the costs and time required, to subsequent development of wind projects in Lake Erie and across the Great Lakes more generally,
- Attract companies to our region, and catalyze the growth of companies in our region, that perform R&D and manufacturing in wind technologies by demonstrating our commitment to advancing the frontiers and possibilities of wind energy – particularly for freshwater offshore application,
- Create a crowning visual icon for the Greater Cleveland area
Cuyahoga County, based on the recommendation of the Great Lakes Energy Development Task Force, has begun to implement an approach to explore the viability of creating a Great Lakes Wind Research Center. The County, in partnership with the Task Force and its members, has begun to undertake a series of tactical steps to investigate and pursue an off-shore wind energy strategy. Wind energy projects include:
Feasibility Study: The Task Force has begun a study to examine the feasibility of installing a 20 mega-watt offshore wind turbine demonstration project in Lake Erie and creating the “Great Lakes Wind Energy Center”, a center of excellence for research, testing, and certification of new wind turbine technologies. An RFQ process was designed to identify the appropriate project management team. JW Great Lakes Wind, LLC was selected to lead the feasibility study.
Cleveland Water Crib Monitoring Study: Green Energy Ohio (“GEO”) gathered data from the wind power-monitoring tower located on the 5-mile water intake station in Lake Erie and analyed the offshore wind climate of the lake. GEO worked with the Task Force to interpret the data and found the wind capacity on Lake Erie to advantageous for the development of wind turbines for power generation.
Clean Renewable Energy Bonds: The Internal Revenue Service granted a national bond volume cap to the County to issue tax credit bonds called “clean renewable energy bonds” (“CREBs”) under section 54(f) of the Internal Revenue Code (the “Code”) to finance eligible clean renewable energy projects described in section 45 of the Code. Department of Development submitted the application to for the allocation on behalf of the BOCC and the Task Force.
2007 European Offshore Wind Conference: The Task Force presented the vision for the Northeast Ohio wind energy strategy at the 2007 European Offshore Wind Conference in Berlin, Germany. The conference assembled over 2,000 participants to discuss the future of offshore wind energy. Attendees included representatives of the offshore wind industry, policy makers and energy specialists.
In the News
Freshwater Wind Farms for the Great Lakes?
- 25 February 2009 - nytimes.com