March 17, 2005

Speaking of electricity use in Massachusetts

As noted in the previous post, there has been some confusion about electricity demand in Massachusetts (actually, at issue was the whole New England grid, but also at issue are wind turbines proposed in the Berkshires of Massachusetts). According to the U.S. Energy Information Agency, 52,410 GW-h of electricity were sold in Massachusetts in 2002. The annual output of a 1.5-MW wind turbine can be expected to be (granting a generous 25% capacity factor) not quite 3.3 GW-h. Therefore, each turbine might produce electricity equivalent to six one-thousandths of a percent of the state's electricity needs. In other words, almost 16,000 of them would be required to provide only 1% of the state's needs.

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