Monthly news wrap up March- April 2013

United States Senator Angus King to Address the 6th Annual Global Marine Renewable Energy Conference
On January 3, 2013, Angus S. King, Jr. was sworn in as Maine's first Independent United States Senator.
Senator King joins a long line of independent leaders from the State of Maine. He is a steadfast believer in the need for greater bipartisan dialogue and relationship building among legislators.
 
 
Maine regulators OK Passadumkeag Ridge wind farm
The board's 5-1 vote Thursday reverses last November's decision by the Department of Environmental Protection to deny a permit for the 42-megawatt wind farm. It means Quantum Utility Generation can move forward with construction once DEP writes the permit.
 
Construction company gets award for Maine tidal energy project work
The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) awarded CPM Constructors with a 2013 Build America Award for New Municipal & Utility Construction at AGC’s 94th annual Convention in Palm Springs, Calif., on March 7. CPM won for its construction of the first phase of Ocean Renewable Power Co.’s (ORPC’s) Cobscook Bay Tidal Energy Project in Lubec and Eastport, the first commercial, grid-connected tidal energy project to be built in the United States.
 
UMaine offshore wind team engaged in international race to use lasers to gauge ocean wind speeds
 The University of Maine is in the midst of an international race to develop a new system to measuring winds high above the oceans and advance the push for offshore wind power.
 
UMaine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center is working on a buoy-based light detection and ranging system, or LiDAR, which it hopes to deploy in the Gulf of Maine by late May or early June, according the center’s director, Habib Dagher.
 
Sen. Collins Renews Push For Offshore Wind Energy, Investment Tax Credit
Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Tom Carper, D-Del.,  have reintroduced the Incentivizing Offshore Wind Power Act, which would provide financial incentives for investments in offshore wind energy.
 
The legislation provides a 30% investment tax credit (ITC) for the first 3 GW of U.S. offshore wind projects. Once awarded a tax credit, companies have five years to install the offshore wind facility. Companies cannot receive other tax credits in addition to the offshore wind ITC.
 
New England states consider buying power from renewable sources
New England states are considering establishing a market for renewable energy in an effort to reduce dependence on fossil fuels. Establishing a New England market to buy renewable energy seemed a laudable goal when governors committed last year to bulk purchases of wind and solar power to knock down the price while reducing the region's reliance on fossil fuels.
 
Study predicts looming workforce shortage in the energy industry
The U.S. energy sector, including the wind industry, may experience a serious shortage in skilled workers over the next five years if the industry does nothing to train younger workers who could replace retiring baby boomers, a new study by the nonprofit group National Research Council found. The council recommends several actions to address this scenario such as conducting efforts to change perceptions about the energy sector to lure younger workers to join the industry. "Unless this is corrected, the nation risks losing its capacity to provide new science and engineering professionals for the workforce," according to the report.