Offshore Wind Energy Introduction Chapter

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[. . .] 371-372).

2. Wind Power: "air that is in motion in relation to the earth's surface, especially in a horizontal direction."

3. Wind Energy: "the energy contained in the movement of air masses; in human energy use traditionally captured by means of the sails of a ship or the vanes of a windmill, and currently by mechanical blades similar to air plane propellers" (Cleveland & Morris, 2006, p. 485).

4. Wind Turbines: "a wind-driven machine containing curved rotors or blades inside a wheel set vertically on a revolving shaft; wind or air pressure against the blade turns the wheel, and the rotating shaft may then drive a dynamo to produce electric power" (Cleveland & Morris, 2006, p. 487).

5. Wind Farm: "a wind farm (often also called a wind park) is a cluster of wind turbines that acts and is connected to the power system as a single electricity producing power station. Generally it is expected that a wind farm consists of more than three wind turbines. Modern wind farms may have capacities in the order of hundreds of MW, and are installed offshore as well as on land" (Cleveland & Morris, 2006, p. 486).

Wind Power is an important energy source. As the definition suggests that the winds are a circumlocutory type of solar power. For the past many centuries, they are used as a source of energy. In recent times, wind power has developed into one of the thriving renewable energy technologies. Wind projects are present in many parts of the world (Elliott, 1997, p. 88). The main usage of wind energy or wind power has continued to be the pumping of underground water. Topography and weather conditions have a drastic effect on wind power. It is also affected with seasonal, daily and hourly dissimilarities. Recently, wind power is used to generate electricity by using wind turbines. This energy generation is enough to meet the requirement of a local electricity grid (Williams & Uqaili, 1999, p. 73).

Offshore Wind Energy

Renewable energy has been given this name as it depends on natural energy flows and sources in the environment. As these sources are which, since they are endlessly and incessantly replenished, they are not in any danger of ever running out. Thus, from the sustainability point-of-view, they are our first decisive factor (Elliott, 1997, p. 85).

We already know that wind is air in motion. The earth's surface is not flat (because of diverse land and water formations) and due to its uneven Topography, the radiations from the sun are absorbed disproportionately by it. Thus, the production of wind is due to the irregular heating of the earth by the 'big star' at the center of the solar system. It has been more than 2000 years that the wind energy consumed for power generation onshore. However, in today's cotemporary world, the main purpose for producing energy from wind is to generate electricity by using wind turbines principally (Offshore Wind Energy, para. 2-3).

The Persian Gulf Scenario

Most of the countries that produce oil are located on the Persian Gulf. Those include Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Qatar, and United Arab Emirates. Despite of the fact that these states have adequate supplies of oil, they are presently experiencing a very low rate of oil production. Their economies are completely dependent on oil. This situation has led them to come to the point where they should start moving towards new energy resources to face the forthcoming oil exhaustion (Cinti, 2008).

It has been analyzed by experts that countries that are in possession of adequate oil resources offer better education to the people. Also, their economic policies are more market oriented. If compared with other developing countries, such countries have more beneficial and complimentary investment saving attribute. It is also said that oil rich countries have more facilities available for the detection, discovery and exploitation of natural resources (Cinti, 2008).

On the contrary, many researchers suggest that it is not necessary that a country rich in natural resources would have a better economy than a country that have no or less natural resources. History provides evidence that those countries that had less natural resources did better than the ones that possessed ample quantities. This phenomenon has been given the name of resource curse. The same is the case with oil-rich Middle East countries who haven't achieved higher rates of growth regardless of the fact that they export oil globally (Cinti, 2008).

The oil-rich countries are not growing due to the following factors:

i. Swarming out manufacturing sector that is the one leading growth and development.

ii. Institutions are given a central role that becomes a reason for the worsening condition f a country. Ineffectiveness and incompetence is increased and competition is lowered in such a situation.

iii. Political inefficiency by reimbursing high salaries to the public employers. This is done so as to get elected again by 'buying' people.

In order to develop and overcome inefficiencies and the approaching oil supply collapse, the mentioned countries are striving hard to update their financial systems. The common circumstances are presenting that the resource on which everyone is relying its way of living is diminishing continuously at this instant (Cinti, 2008).

The Middle East countries should consider development and advancement of technologies instead of dropping price precariousness and overworking of basins. This area has been observed as the one which does not concentrate on developing wing energy industry as this industry is thought to be the one with a highly volatile nature. As the economies of this area are completely dependent on oil, they should start considering investing in the wind energy industry as it will benefit them in more ways than oil does. It seems as if these countries on the Persian Gulf do not care much about the future and their irrational thoughts and hopes have been the cause of their present situation (Cinti, 2008).

If the Middle East countries manage the extraction of oil, only then they would be able to manipulate the markets and performance of other countries in the world. This is because the world is becoming more and more dependent on the oil-rich countries. However, as there is not enough oil, the Middle East countries are developing their internal consumption radically. They are keen to extract oil that is necessary for their own development rather than extracting it for exporting purposes. This situation could lead to a political fight as a rickety global scenario may cause a reduction of the production (Cinti, 2008).

It has also been observed that the quality of oil has changed too, specifically in Saudi Arabia. Much of the produced oil is of such a low quality that it is entirely impossible for most of the importing countries to refine it. Thus, in order to utilize this oil, Saudi Arabian government has started investing in new refineries. However, investing in refineries is not easy. Huge investments are needed for the purpose. As Saudi Arabia is the only country that has the power and money to invest in oil refineries, it gives her an edge over other Middle East countries (Cinti, 2008).

The question arises that what should be done? The most important thing now is to give attention to the accurate management and proper organization of the resources that are in no danger of exhaustion. Thus, wind energy is one of the vital resources that can help countries to develop and prosper. These countries should avoid thinking only in terms of the short run and must make plans and take actions that could make things get better. The need of the time is that these countries should change their behavior of depending solely on oil. Instead, they must use alternatives such as wind energy to elevate their levels of economy (Cinti, 2008).

Why is investment in wind energy sector beneficial?

It is the high time to appropriately canalize investments in various energy resources sectors such as hydropower and wind power to create new capital markets and to develop and prosper. These sectors provide energy sources that are cost-effectively and reasonably competitive. The most important step that can be taken in this regard of exploitation of resources is that Middle East countries must initiate empowerment of the wind energy sector as an alternative for producing energy utilizing oil. Using renewable resources presently would surely make it possible that the necessity of oil is lessened. It appears as if this is the right time for the Middle East countries to start investing in the wind energy industry which would help them to engage in the prosperity and betterment of their countries. If truth be told, investment in the wind industry would certainly be a significant step taken by these countries to elevate their economic status (Cinti, 2008). However, industrial innovations, scale effects and learning curves of wind power shall provide… [END OF PREVIEW]

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