Offshore Wind NO Transition Without Transmission

New England will not achieve clean energy goals without modernizing its antique power grid and considering health and safety.
Offshore wind contractors are sending their power onshore by using High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) transmission cables. HVDC transmission is new to the United States as the entire electric grid is alternating current. 
There are massive barriers to the further development of offshore wind that represent a major risk to the long-term growth, financial, and economic success of projects. 
In 2020 the New England states had an opportunity but failed to place miles of HVDC subsea transmission cables from wind sites to large cities for example Boston, Hartford, and Portland. 
States in a rush to meet renewable energy goals by 2025 allowed offshore wind contractors to pick the fastest low-hanging fruit. They allowed the cables to come onshore close to old grid locations on the coast where now the antique grid needs to be rebuilt to move the power to large cities. It would have been cheaper to place submarine cables in 2020.
To put it bluntly, they put the cart before the horse. No matter how many megawatts of power are awarded to offshore wind contractors there is not enough land-based electric grid built for the future.
Offshore wind permitted their projects from the ocean to the land and didn't have the necessary land access, right of way, and local municipal permits. 
The major obstacle is every place the high voltage direct current offshore wind cables come onshore a massive high voltage direct current converter station has to be built to change the power to high voltage alternating current to adapt to the old electric grid. 
One example is Falmouth, Massachusetts a proposal by offshore wind to build a six-acre HVDC converter station on the Cape Cod aquifer. The town is a residential vacation destination and boating community with a large percentage of retirees. The EPA In 1982, defined the Cape Cod Aquifer as the sole or principal source of drinking water for Cape Cod. Falmouth depends 100 percent on the aquifer for drinking water. Now the town has to gamble their drinking water for the wind agenda. 
Safety and health a major issues with these new HVDC plants but it is the last thing you read in siting studies.
A study is being done for a proposed HVDC converter station in the Bronx, New York where a one-quarter-mile setback is being requested by a nearby Museum. 
Accidents do occur in these direct current conversion plants. In 2021 the British power plant in Sellindge power station in Kent, England had a fire accident at the 2000 megawatt HVDC converter station in which the building imploded.
Setbacks are required for noise, radio frequencies, and fires.
The issues are catastrophic accidents including lightning strikes at electric substations resulting in contamination of drinking water. Concrete containment walls in the event of a large fire don't always work. These electric station fires require using high-pressure foam which hurts the environment. 
Commercial wind is a bunco scheme of enormous consequence. Citizens who value intellectual honesty should not quietly be fleeced by such mendacity, even from their government officials. 


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Comment by Willem Post on February 2, 2024 at 1:06pm


The sooner that expensive boondoggle is dumped, the better for the future of Maine

Comment by Frank Haggerty on February 2, 2024 at 10:27am

Gulf of Maine Draft Wind Energy Area 

Massachusetts Offshore Wind Update - 2023 Q3 and Q4

Jan 2024 Wind Update - 2023 Q3 and Q4
Comment by Willem Post on February 2, 2024 at 9:23am





Annual Cost of Megapack Battery Systems; 2023 pricing


Assume a system rated 45.3 MW/181.9 MWh, and an all-in turnkey cost of $104.5 million, per Example 2

Amortize bank loan for 50% of $104.5 million at 6.5%/y for 15 years, $5.484 million/y

Pay Owner return of 50% of $104.5 million at 10%/y for 15 years, $6.765 million/y (10% due to high inflation)

Lifetime (Bank + Owner) payments 15 x (5.484 + 6.765) = $183.7 million


Assume battery daily usage for 15 years at 10%, and loss factor = 1/(0.9 *0.9)

Battery lifetime output = 15 y x 365 d/y x 181.9 MWh x 0.1, usage x 1000 kWh/MWh = 99,590,250 kWh to HV grid; 122,950,926 kWh from HV grid; 233,606,676 kWh loss


(Bank + Owner) payments, $183.7 million / 99,590,250 kWh = 184.5 c/kWh

Less 50% subsidies (ITC, depreciation in 5 years, deduction of interest on borrowed funds) is 92.3c/kWh

At 10% usage, (Bank + Owner) cost, 92.3 c/kWh

At 40% usage, (Bank + Owner) cost, 23.1 c/kWh


Excluded costs/kWh: 1) O&M; 2) system aging, 1.5%/y, 3) 19% HV grid-to-HV grid loss, 3) grid extension/reinforcement to connect battery systems, 5) downtime of parts of the system, 6) decommissioning in year 15, i.e., disassembly, reprocessing and storing at hazardous waste sites.
NOTE: The 40% throughput is close to Tesla’s recommendation of 60% maximum throughput, i.e., not charging above 80%  full and not discharging below 20% full, to achieve a 15-y life, with normal aging


NOTE: Tesla’s recommendation was not heeded by the owners of the Hornsdale Power Reserve in Australia. They added Megapacks to offset rapid aging of the original system, and added more Megapacks to increase the rating of the expanded system.



Regarding any project, the bank and the owner have to be paid, no matter what.
Therefore, I amortized the bank loan and the owner’s investment

If you divide the total of the payments over 15 years by the throughput during 15 years, you get the cost per kWh, as shown.

According to EIA annual reports, almost all battery systems have throughputs less than 10%. I chose 10% for calculations.

A few battery systems have higher throughputs, if they are used to absorb midday solar and discharge it during peak hour periods of late-afternoon/early-evening.
They may reach up to 40% throughput. I chose 40% for calculations

Remember, you have to draw about 50 units from the HV grid to deliver about 40 units to the HV grid, because of a-to-z system losses. That gets worse with aging.

A lot of people do not like these c/kWh numbers, because they have been repeatedly told by self-serving folks, battery Nirvana is just around the corner, which is a load of crap.

Comment by Willem Post on February 2, 2024 at 9:22am

Levelized Cost of Energy Deceptions, by US-EIA, et al.

Most people have no idea wind and solar systems need grid expansion/reinforcement and expensive support systems to even exist on the grid.

With increased annual W/S electricity percent on the grid, increased grid investments are needed, plus greater counteracting plant capacity, MW, especially when it is windy and sunny around noon-time.

Increased counteracting of the variable W/S output, places an increased burden on the grid’s other generators, causing them to operate in an inefficient manner (more Btu/kWh, more CO2/kWh), which adds more cost/kWh to the offshore wind electricity cost of about 16 c/kWh, after 50% subsidies

The various cost/kWh adders start with annual W/S electricity at about 8% on the grid.

The adders become exponentially greater, with increased annual W/S electricity percent on the grid


The US-EIA, Lazard, Bloomberg, etc., and their phony LCOE "analyses", are deliberately understating the cost of wind, solar and battery systems

Their LCOE “analyses” of W/S/B systems purposely exclude major LCOE items.

Their deceptions reinforced the popular delusion, W/S are competitive with fossil fuels, which is far from reality.

The excluded LCOE items are shifted to taxpayers, ratepayers, and added to government debts.

W/S would not exist without at least 50% subsidies

W/S output could not be physically fed into the grid, without items 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. See list.


1) Subsidies equivalent to about 50% of project lifetime owning and operations cost,

2) Grid extension/reinforcement to connect remote W/S systems to load centers

3) A fleet of quick-reacting power plants to counteract the variable W/S output, on a less-than-minute-by-minute basis, 24/7/365 

4) A fleet of power plants to provide electricity during low-W/S periods, and 100% during high-W/S periods, when rotors are feathered and locked,

5) Output curtailments to prevent overloading the grid, i.e., paying owners for not producing what they could have produced

6) Hazardous waste disposal of wind turbines, solar panels and batteries. See image.


Comment by Willem Post on February 2, 2024 at 9:21am

The German and UK economies are in tatters, due to expensive build-outs of wind and solar systems, that require all sorts of back up system for support.

Floating Offshore Wind in Maine


Electricity Cost: Assume a $750 million, 100 MW project consists of foundations, wind turbines, cabling to shore, and installation at $7,500/kW.


Production 100 MW x 8766 h/y x 0.40, CF = 350,640,000 kWh/y

Amortize bank loan for $525 million, 70% of project, at 6.5%/y for 20 years, 13.396 c/kWh.

Owner return on $225 million, 30% of project, at 10%/y for 20 years, 7.431 c/kWh

Offshore O&M, about 30 miles out to sea, 8 c/kWh.

Supply chain, special ships, and ocean transport, 3 c/kWh

All other items, 4 c/kWh 

Total cost 13.396 + 7.431 + 8 + 3 + 4 = 35.827 c/kWh

Less 50% subsidies (ITC, 5-y depreciation, interest deduction on borrowed funds) 17.913 c/kWh

Owner sells to utility at 17.913 c/kWh


NOTE: If li-ion battery systems were contemplated, they would add 20 to 40 c/kWh to the cost of any electricity passing through them, during their about 15-y useful service lives! See Part 1 of URL


NOTE: The above prices compare with the average New England wholesale price of about 5 c/kWh, during the 2009 - 2022 period, 13 years, courtesy of:


Gas-fueled CCGT plants, with low-cost, low-CO2, very-low particulate/kWh

Nuclear plants, with low-cost, near-zero CO2, zero particulate/kWh

Hydro plants, with low-cost, near-zero-CO2, zero particulate/kWh

Cabling to Shore Plus $Billions for Additional Gridwork on Shore


A high voltage cable would be hanging from each unit, until it reaches bottom, say about 200 to 500 feet. 
The cables would need some type of flexible support system

There would be about 5 cables, each connected to sixty, 10 MW wind turbines, making landfall on the Maine shore, for connection to 5 substations (each having a 600 MW capacity, requiring several acres of equipment), then to connect to the New England high voltage grid. 

The onshore grid will need $billions for expansion/reinforcement to transmit electricity to load centers, mostly in southern New England.


Floating Offshore a Major Financial Burden on Maine People


Rich Norwegian people can afford to dabble in such expensive demonstration follies (See Appendix 2), but the over-taxed, over-regulated, impoverished Maine people would buckle under such a heavy burden, while trying to make ends meet in the near-zero, real-growth Maine economy.

Maine folks need lower energy bills, not higher energy bills.

Comment by Dan McKay on February 2, 2024 at 9:06am

The clock is ticking away as New England State policies which are accelerating the percentage of renewables to meet compliance are in peril of complete collapse. Offshore wind was supposed to be the savior to these misguided policies, but people are awakening to the destruction these machines will inflict, environmentally and financially. How will legislators deal with this dilemma? People are getting sick of being thrown under the bus. 

Soon, the price per kilowatt hour paid to existing wind and solar developments as "Renewable Energy Credits" will exceed the market price of the physical energy production. The "Compliance RECs"  will more than double the cost of electricity.
Comment by Frank Haggerty on February 2, 2024 at 8:09am
 High Voltage Direct Current Converter Fire: Sellindge, Kent England 2021
Comment by Willem Post on February 2, 2024 at 7:43am

Offshore wind systems send their electricity as AC to shore, because distances are short, and it is much less expensive 

Then it is converted DC for onshore transmission to distant load centers with dedicated HVDC lines

New England just had a month with only a few % of  wind and solar after 25 years of subsidies 

See my article

We should stop the unaffordable wind and solar gravy train for the rich, that screws everyone else, and provides unreliable, dysfunctional power

Germany has ruined its economy with major build outs of wind and solar, that often do not produce anything.

We should learn from Germany’ s very expensive, ruinous lesson

We should build many more nuclear plants instead of wind and solar


Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.”

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Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

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