A few weeks ago, an underwater turbine generating renewable energy was pulled from the bottom of the East River in New York City for inspection. The turbine worked just swimmingly, marking the start of a five-year project that will install 30 turbines throughout the river, generating enough electricity to power about 600 homes.
His project didn’t work so well at first, with turbines breaking under the high pressure of the tides. But with stronger equipment and more research, six turbines worked smoothly and produced enough energy to power a supermarket on Roosevelt Island, located in the middle of the East River.
The best part of this is that the project is quickly progressing while still keeping delicate underwater ecosystems in mind. The slow movement of these devices does not hurt animals, and with quick-flowing currents, fish don’t hang around in one spot long enough to be affected.
According to John Miller, head of the New England Marine Renewable Energy Center at the University of Massachusetts, devices like this could provide 5% of the nation’s electricity in the next 20 years. It’s certainly a hopeful way to combine the power of the city and the water surrounding it without sacrificing the health of our environment.
Image: Verdant Power