Bacon Bits: Good News for a Change

More wind turbines off the Mid-Atlantic coast. Electricity from the Kitty Hawk Offshore Wind project 27 miles off the coast of Corolla, N.C., construction of which could begin as soon as 2024, will be funneled into the electric grid via a substation in Virginia Beach’s Sandbridge community. Roughly 600 jobs will be generated within the Hampton Roads statistical area, which includes part of North Carolina. The project is expected to generate 2,500 megawatts of electricity eventually, enough to power 700,000 homes, reports Virginia Business. From Sandbridge a combination of underground and overhead cables will make the electricity available for resale by developer Avangrid Inc., to Dominion Energy, Duke Energy, Appalachian Power, and others.

No aggressive enforcement of COVID curfew. Chesterfield County police will not enforce Governor Ralph Northam’s midnight-to-5 p.m. COVID-19 curfew by stopping motorists who are otherwise driving lawfully. “The law requires officers to have reasonable suspicion to stop a driver,” wrote Police Chief Colonel Jeffery S. Katz on Facebook. “There are completely lawful reasons for people to be out and about during these times and therefore mere operation of a motor vehicle does not remotely meet the legal burden necessary to justify a lawful stop.” Responding to queries from The Virginia Star, Henrico County police and the Hanover County sheriffs department confirmed that they, too, require reasonable suspicion for conducting traffic stops.

Satellite broadband for Southwest Virginia. Wise County Public Schools will be the first school district in Virginia to use the Starlink satellite internet constellation founded by Elon Musk. The entrepreneur, better known for his Tesla electric vehicles, touts Starlink as delivering broadband to “locations where access has been unreliable, expensive, or completely unavailable.”

The pilot project will provide free serve to 45 Wise County families starting early 2021 and will expand to 90 more. SpaceX will receive $856 million in federal grants to expand internet access for rural America. The low earth-orbit satellites will provide internet speeds faster than 150 megabits per second, not as fast as speeds provided by direct fiber-optic connections but faster than that available to most people in the U.S., Virginia business reports. 

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38 responses to “Bacon Bits: Good News for a Change

  1. free broadband !
    free, cause it’s a right

  2. “The project is expected to generate 2,500 megawatts of electricity eventually, enough to power 700,000 homes…”

    Or two of Al Gore’s vacation houses…


    • Oh God, let it go! Hasn’t South Park skewered the schmuck enough?

      But I did enjoy John Denver’s flaying of Tipper.

      • You don’t understand. I was once related to Al Gore – he was an in-law, twice removed – so I feel a certain “familial” responsibility to continue to bash him relentlessly.


        • Oh, yeah. Fair game, ex-in-laws are good for a lifetime of wounding. Once the ex-wife remarries and the alimony ends, you are legally required to mend the fence, but her brother is open season.

        • That’s an unfortunate situation, aren’t he and Tipper still legally married though?

          • I’m not sure. I don’t actually know them – the relationship is quite distant, at best – through my wife’s mother’s side of the family.

            I was just having some fun.

  3. Baconator with extra cheese

    “Rural America” is a dogwhistle for white…. seems systemically racist to be giving white people free internet while BIPOCs in cities have to sit outside a Starbucks to do school work!
    The Equity issue can be used to stomp on just about everything!
    Makes me ask why RVA isn’t considering free WiFi instead of bus service.

    • “…while BIPOCs in cities have to sit outside a Starbucks to do school work!”

      Aren’t they allowed inside the Starbucks?

      • Baconator with extra cheese

        The media is chockfull of stories of kids sitting outside McDonald’s or Starbuck’s doing their coursework.
        I believe Hanover was giving out mobile hotspots to those in need.
        Wouldn’t it be more “equitable” to provide “free” internet to BIPOC kids historically and currently suffering “systemic racism” over rural, often disproportionately white (and thus priveleged) kids?
        I mean come on it’s even racist now for magnet schools to be 70% asian!
        Dr Governor, Secretary Woke, and DJ AG need to crack down on this racism!

  4. The really good news about the NC wind project is we will have a direct side by side comparison on costs with our utility-owned project, and Dominion ratepayers are going to understand how completely the General Assembly Democrats screwed them. Might start digging into numbers today…..

    Other good news: Just looked at Real Clear Politics, which keeps a running tally on COVID by state. Virginia is now in the bottom ten on the deaths per capita ranking. So 40 states and DC doing worse….

    • The bad news is that it appears that Sandbridge, a nice little residential ocean front community that has changed a lot since we first start going there 17 years ago (got a traffic light now; two large condo developments; road straightened, etc.), will see more development what with “a combination of underground and overhead cables.”

  5. Good news all around. NC will pave the way on those water windmills. Police won’t enforce NoPlan’s non-plan. Satellite broadband is easily the most economically reasonable approach for people in somewhat isolated low density communities.

    Add the fact that a nurse in Queens got the first vaccine shot yesterday and the Electoral College ended the presidential debate and we may be at the beginning of the end of the 2020 fiasco.

  6. Satellite internet provider:

  7. What if a person of color is driving the streets of Virginia after mid-night? Should she/he be stopped?

  8. Re: offshore wind
    let me know if the NC project ever happens-
    New Jersey was supposedly way ahead with their cost-effective Ocean Wind project bid by Orsted, but nothing happening yet. Project was supposed to be online 2021 I think. NJ’s hoped for turbine manufacturing plant is still a dream apparently, I had thought it was going to happen. I guess you can get a good price bid, but you are at the mercy of the bidder to execute.

    The Virginia approach is full speed we will pay all costs ourselves, no matter how much it costs. So we are in control of our own destiny, for better or worse.

    One green thing I would approve of, is Federal govt help $$ on getting more cost-effective offshore wind. But maybe also more Fed gov’t oversight and coordination. Hoover Dam analogy in my mind, having walked the face of that dam in recent years.

    • A few years ago, my wife and I were in Oahu. We were driving on the east side of the Island heading to the north. We saw quite a few windmills, but more anti-windmill signs than windmills. People didn’t like the visual impacts.

      • Do you think the 16th century Dutch protested the building of all those windmills that are considered historical landmarks today?

        • I’m sure some of them did. Throughout history people have always needed to find something to bitch about.

          I think that is true across all racial, political and cultural boundaries.

      • Hawaii has little or no native fossil fuels and, like most islands, has to import diesel to burn at about twice or three times the cost of fossil fuels in mainland countries that have native supplies of fossil fuels.

    • More effective off shore wind is known as on shore wind…..

    • Agree, on-shore wind power costs less up front to build, and usually to maintain. But there is a significant advantage to off-shore in the amount of wind available on average (which adds up over time), and a big advantage to the builder if far enough off-shore that the aesthetic objections to permitting diminish. Also, once you get the off-shore site started and run a transmission line out to it from the grid, the incremental cost (and financing risk) of adding more off-shore units can be much lower than for the initial units, the pioneers.

      • Baconator with extra cheese

        Even better when you are guaranteed a profit.

      • Well, Virginia should start with much cheaper onshore wind, but we’d have to do most of the projects in WV, MD, PA. So we want offshore wind since that is our territory, but that’s going to cost $$ us, unless we try for lower cost bids, which we do not want to wait, and we are not trying for lower cost.

  9. When talking about the cost of offshore wind, few folks talk about the cost of nukes… 😉

  10. James Wyatt Whitehead V

    Starlink tracker here if you want to watch the train some night. I thought it was UFOs first time I saw it.

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