Did you know that 33 percent of the total East Coast offshore wind energy within 50 miles of the shortline is located of the coast of South and North Carolina? This data comes from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and also indicates “North Carolina and South Carolina have the largest offshore wind energy resources in shallow water on the Atlantic Seaboard.”
There are various reasons for SC to invest in renewable wind energy according to SC Offshore Wind Collaborative, including “rising energy prices, growing public concern over energy security, climate change, public health, sustainable local economic development, and the desire to preserve the environment are driving the increased demand in renewable energy and sustainable management of water resources throughout the world.”
Now, the development of this industry may be advanced through regional collaboration. In June, representatives from South Carolina and North Carolina met to discuss working together to expand wind energy in the Carolinas.
Southern Alliance for Clean Energy describes the meeting in a press release:
The objective of the two-state meeting was to explore ways to leverage each state’s unique experience, knowledge, and resources to accelerate the deployment of offshore wind energy in a way that is mutually beneficial to both states. “Our states are uniquely positioned with strengths and advantages that complement each other.” said Elizabeth Colbert-Busch of the Clemson University Restoration Institute. Some of the initial opportunities that were discussed included enabling various research institutions to collaborate on future research projects and exploring the possibility of an offshore wind energy project along the NC/SC border.
Both states are open to regional collaboration with other neighboring state as well. For further reading, check out the S.C. Energy Office’s page on wind energy.