Opinion: NC Must Seize the Day on Wind Power

The writer is president of the Southeastern Wind Coalition.

When the Inflation Reduction Act was signed this month, North Carolina won the lottery, giving us 369 billion reasons to be optimistic about the good that can be achieved with those dollars. Offshore wind was a clear winner, strengthening our state’s shot at thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions in manufacturing, construction and other economic investments.

But those dollars won’t magically appear unless N.C. government leaders plan now to secure funds for programs and projects that will maximize N.C.’s share of the benefits. Our state may be a strong leader in clean energy, but other states are taking concrete steps to attract manufacturers who’ll bring well-paying jobs and economic benefits with them.

To keep up, we need the N.C. Utilities Commission to approve a strong Carbon Plan that reflects the realities of our true offshore wind potential and help meet our climate goals.

This historic package is a game-changer. The cherry on top was the provision that lifted a previous offshore wind leasing moratorium. North Carolina can now forge ahead to compete for a hefty share of the $109 billion offshore wind industry. We were already well-positioned to capitalize on this opportunity due to our strong manufacturing workforce, deep water ports, and robust supply chain industry. Lifting the moratorium unlocks the state’s economic potential.

Providing a stable policy environment allows N.C. businesses to better predict demand and make sound investment decisions, that will allow them to create family-sustaining wages in parts of the state that don’t have as many job opportunities.

North Carolina is already home to manufacturing facilities that make fiberglass fabric for blades (in Huntersville), steel plates for wind turbine towers (Hertford County), and transmission cables (Tarboro). Lifting the moratorium, a strong NC Carbon Plan, Inflation Reduction Act funds, and Gov. Cooper’s commitment to build offshore wind by 2040 are a winning combination for these businesses. It will set N.C. on a direct path to a future where clean wind energy powers our homes, creates jobs and grows local economies.

Katharine Kollins, President of the Southeastern Wind Coalition 

This story was originally published August 30, 2022 12:05 PM.

Read more at: https://www.newsobserver.com/opinion/article265036439.html#storylink=cpy

Share:

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

Latest Post

2024 International Partnering Forum

The International Partnering Forum (IPF) is the premier offshore wind energy conference in the Americas. Hosted by Oceantic Network, formerly the Business Network for Offshore Wind, IPF connects global leaders and businesses in the supply chain, offers unparalleled networking opportunities, and delivers the most timely and relevant updates on the industry, from technology and policy to safety and siting.

State Energy Conference of North Carolina

The State Energy Conference provides actionable insight into the business of energy, connecting technical innovation, diverse resources and industry opportunity to help drive North Carolina’s regional energy economy forward with national impact. The 2024 State Energy Conference will be held in person at the McKimmon Center in Raleigh, NC. Come to network, learn best practices, hear about successful case studies, engage in important energy discussions and more.

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Releases Potential Sale Notice for Gulf of Mexico 2 Wind Auction

New Orleans, LA. – Today, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) released a Potential Sale Notice (PSN) for the second wind lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM2). BOEM is proposing to auction four areas offshore from Louisiana and Texas, totaling 410,060 acres on the Outer Continental Shelf.  

Duke Energy’s Updated Load Forecast Calls for 2400 MW of Offshore Wind in the Carolinas

Raleigh, N.C. – Today, Duke Energy filed supplemental modeling, additional portfolio analysis, and supplemental testimony with North Carolina regulators for the proposed combined Carbon Plan and Integrated Resource Plan (CPIRP). The Carbon Plan is mandated through HB951 and requires the NCUC to take ‘all reasonable steps’ to achieve 70 percent carbon emission reductions from 2005 levels by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 using a least-cost approach.

Louisiana Wind Energy Week

January 15-19, 2024 – Produced by GNO, Inc. and the Southeastern Wind Coalition, Louisiana Wind Energy Week will convene local stakeholders, national partners, industry leaders, and environmental specialists in a week of enriching activities surrounding the State of Louisiana’s emerging offshore wind industry.

SEWC Statement on Louisiana Offshore Wind Operating Agreements

New Orleans, L.A. – This week, Louisiana approved the first two Operating Agreements for offshore wind leases in Louisiana state waters, representing a significant step by the state and Governor John Bel Edwards towards Louisiana’s goal of 5 GW of offshore wind by 2035. 

Newsletter

Sign Up with Your Email Address to Receive News and Updates