AWC President Among Top ‘2011 US Innovative Lawyers’ (USA)

 Atlantic Grid Development’s core project, the Atlantic Wind Connection, is an offshore high–voltage transmission backbone designed to serve efficiently mid-Atlantic region offshore wind energy parks while also making the congested land-based transmission grid more reliable and efficient.

The system’s backbone cable will run in shallow trenches on the seabed in federal waters 15-20 miles offshore, where the wind is strong but the towers would barely be visible. When completed, the project will generate enough to power approximately 1.9m households.

 Mr Melnyk says: “The idea came about as a result of my needing to change the focus of my legal practice and deciding there was a lot of potential in developing offshore renewable power as a practice area. So I looked at how you would develop a project in US waters and saw there was a whole transmission angle to it, then I saw that there was an opportunity to actually do it.”

The $5bn Atlantic Wind Connection project exemplifies the fact that innovation in the energy sector is not always born in the laboratory. It is also an example of how legal training and experience can be applied to creating change.

Mr Melnyk says: “Sometimes you think it’s only the engineers who can make it better and drive down costs, but here there were policy opportunities to make it better.”


Source: atlanticwindconnection, November 04, 2011