Provided by the NRDC and Google Earth
Google Earth recently started a new service targeting renewable energy project developers in the U.S. It consists of maps showing restricted lands and wildlife areas in the western U.S. that have to be avoided. The service was developed in collaboration with the National Audubon Society and the Natural Resources Defence Council (NRDC).
On its website, the NRDC also provides other kinds of maps developed for the same target group. These include maps of the entire U.S. showing the potential for wind, solar, and biomass projects, as well as the existing and planned projects in those technologies.
The NRDC map on wind energy clearly shows that the density of wind projects does not always coincide with the actual wind energy potential. The relatively small potential of states like Texas and Illinois is already extensively well deployed, while the huge wind energy potential in states like Colorado, Nevada, and Wyoming is grossly underdeveloped. No doubt this partially has to do with the large amount of restricted land and sensitive areas in the latter, as well with state policies that may or may not encourage wind energy.Log in to post comments