Researchers create N.S. wind map
to assist growth of energy source
Sep 18, 2007 - The Associated Press
Halifax - The Nova Scotia government
has mapped the province's wind potential and is hoping
to lure investors to what it claims are some of the
most promising wind sources in the world.
Energy Minister Bill Dooks presented
a wind atlas Tuesday that highlights hot red areas
from the northern tip of Cape Breton to the southern
coast of Yarmouth where winds are at their highest.
"By 2013, nearly 20 per cent of all
Nova Scotia's electricity will come from green sources
like wind," he told an environmental conference in
Halifax on Tuesday.
"Now we have an online map to show us
that opportunity in detail."
The atlas shows how much wind is available
to producers and where, with a heavy concentration
in Cape Breton, while the coastline is dotted with
areas showing high wind gusts.
Dooks said the map, which was developed
with a $78,000 provincial grant, will give developers
information and incentives to set up wind farms much
like those that have become popular sources of energy
"Nova Scotia has an exceptional wind
regime - one of the best wind regimes in the world,"
said Yves Gagnon, a researcher at the University of
Moncton who created the wind atlas.
"And therefore wind energy should be
developed to generate electricity from renewable sources."
The map is touted as a tool to set future
policy and planning, and as a help for smaller developers
without the resources to do their own mapping for
The maps show wind speeds at three different
heights including 30, 50 and 80 metres above ground.
To spur wind turbine development, the
Energy Department is working with the Union of Nova
Scotia Municipalities to establish policies for zoning
Brendan Haley of the Ecology Action
Centre praised the initiative and said it could lead
to a reliance on renewable resources while providing
ownership to communities that erect turbines.
"What's wonderful about a wind-energy
map is that it provides information for lots of communities
across the province to become renewable energy producers
themselves," he said.
"That needs to be backed up by other
policies that allow communities to finance renewable
It's not clear how officials will go
about setting up the turbines in communities that
might not want them, but Dooks said a call has been
issued for proposals to establish best-practices guidelines
New Brunswick released an updated, high-resolution
wind map last May that includes more detail about
land features and wind velocity.
The province has said it wants New Brunswick
to produce 300 megawatts of electricity from wind