Newscasts

PNS Daily Newscast - May 25, 2018 


President Trump scraps planned talks with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un. Also on our Friday rundown: California lawmakers support and emergency hotline for foster kids; and boating is a booming business in states like Minnesota.

Daily Newscasts

A “Win-Win” for Wind Power, Whales Off East Coast

Wind turbines off Denmark's coast. Photo courtesy NWF
Wind turbines off Denmark's coast. Photo courtesy NWF
December 18, 2012

NEW YORK - The Obama administration has announced funding for seven projects that will speed up the development of the nation's first offshore wind farms. Meanwhile, environmental groups have reached agreement with developers on how to protect critically endangered North Atlantic right whales.

The wind towers themselves, which are planned for installation off the coast of New England, do not threaten right whales, but the site surveys and advance work that come first could be harmful.

Catherine Bowes of the National Wildlife Federation says an agreement between three major environmental groups and three wind-energy developers will ensure that the work will be done without disrupting the whales and their migratory behavior.

"It's a win-win. We really feel like this agreement is a win for the whales and a win for the climate."

She says the benefits for wildlife in general of non-polluting, renewable energy were the motivation that brought together environmentalists and industry. And, for their part, the developers say they have a shared objective.

Mark Rodgers of Energy Management, the firm behind the Cape Wind project in Nantucket Sound, says the agreement matches their commitment to developing wind energy in a responsible way.

"Offshore wind does that by making a lot of energy without creating any air pollution. But we also need to be good neighbors to the wildlife in the immediate area. This is a measure to try to help do that."

The Cape Wind project is in an area where right whales have seldom, if ever, been spotted. Bowes says the other projects, slated for farther out in the Atlantic, will now be looking to avoid doing the advance work while whales are migrating.

"We're reducing co-occurence with the whales and making sure that when those activities are happening out there, it's at times when we do not expect the whales to be in the areas."

In Washington, D.C., the Department of Energy said funding of up to $168 million over six years will advance the creation of America's first offshore wind farms. Worldwide, 12 countries have working wind energy installations. The U.S. has none so far.

Mark Scheerer, Public News Service - NY