The December Issue of EARTH Magazine is now on newsstands and inside you'll find the latest article I wrote with Michael Webber entitled, A Tale of Two States: Offshore Wind in Texas and the Curious Case of Massachusetts. Our piece explores the ways that development of offshore technology has progressed in Massachusetts and Texas-- two states with very different perspectives on energy. Here's a short excerpt:
Offshore wind projects are particularly attractive because coastal wind tends to blow more reliably than onshore winds, especially in times of greater demand, such as hot summer afternoons. In addition, a significant fraction of the U.S. population lives near the coasts, so coastal wind farms are close to demand centers, obviating the need for transmission lines that are hundreds or thousands of kilometers long. Ideal conditions involve relatively shallow water, low wave heights and high-speed winds. Development has been rapid, but not uniform because each state must work within its own governance framework to establish the institutions to support them.
It's an interesting comparison and the graphics in EARTH Magazine are great. I'll also link to the full article when it becomes available online.