The Nimby club is about to get a LOT larger because a Canadian developer has proposed to put 165 windmills on Lake St. Clair. This may be the first time in the US there is a proposal to put windmills in full view of a major metropolitian area and on water as precious to the locals as Nantucket Sound is to people on the east coast. (Where are those native american sunrise worshipers when you need them.)
Suppose the Canadian side of the lake is fully developed wiith turbines. For refernece here is the current October sunset from the Grosse Pointe Farms park on the American side, as seen by Google Earth. http://www.thumbpower.net/kmz/Lake%20St%20Clair/normal%20st%20clair...
There is an offshore wind farm in Europe called Horns Rev. It has 80 turbines, 2 mw name plate capacity each, about 400' tall, covering 10 square miles. Here is 18 of those, cheek to jowl, on the Canadian side of Lake St. Clair.
This kind of vast array is possible on Lake St. Clair because it's shallow everywhere. This can't be done on lakes Huron or Michigan because of deep water well offshore. Floating windmills are'nt yet proven technically or economically.
The Charlie Memorial Wind Farm would produce a lot of power, right? Wrong.
DTE's Fermi 2 has a name plate capacity of around 1098 MW and runs at full power about 85% of the time. In 2007 it produced about 8,300,000 MW hours which is about 17% of DTE's total electricity sales.
My offshore wind farm has 2,880 MW of name plate capacity but would produce only 1/3 of that at best because of variable winds. In round numbers the Charlie wind farm would produce about the same MW hours annually as Fermi 2. Here's the math 2,880 MW * 24 hours * 365 days * .33 capacity= 8,401,190 MW hours per year.