Leases sought to test wind turbines off Ga. coast

ocean wind farm
ocean wind farm
FILE - In this July 11, 2006 file photo, a vessel sails towards a wind farm off the coast of Whitstable on the north Kent coast in southeastern England.

BRUNSWICK, Ga. - Southern Co. has asked the U.S. Department of the Interior for ocean leases off the coasts of Jekyll Island and Savannah to erect research towers to determine the feasibility of constructing offshore wind turbines.

The Atlanta-based company wants to construct towers to support equipment to measure wind speeds and directions, hurricane resistance and to gather other data determine if wind turbines may be viable as an alternative energy source in Georgia.

A two-year study the company conducted with Georgia Tech found favorable conditions for wind turbine technology five miles off Georgia' coast, where average wind speed was 16 to 17 mph.

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