About the Author: Mary Claire McCarthy

An environmental science writer and marketer with a passion for crafting engaging messages to a wide range of audiences. In my free time, I enjoy reading up on the latest renewable energy news, mountain biking and backpacking. I currently manage Windlift's social marketing and PR.

Freeing energy from the grid

The Russian invasion of Ukraine continues to disrupt trade and production, exerting a drag on the global economy while pushing up inflation. The World Bank forecasts a rise in food and energy prices for the next three years, with Americans already feeling prices at the gas pump with a national average of $4.68 a gallon. According to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics report, the U.S. annual inflation rate in May was 8.6%, its highest level since 1981. The cost of living has risen steeply and isn’t showing signs of slowing down. Living off the grid is starting to sound [...]

By |July 20th, 2022|Categories: Airborne Wind Energy|0 Comments

Race car mechanic turned composite designer

Professional race car mechanic – an unexpected profession for one of our Windlift employees. In college, Brayden Summerlin earned a degree in race car building. While Brayden is a car enthusiast, he decided composite design was the lane he wanted to stay in.   As a composite technician, he now spends his time at Windlift creating parts for the Airborne Power Generator (APG). He’s worked at composite companies in the past and as a service manager at an automotive shop during the pandemic. He says that “there wasn’t anything for me at the auto shop – it was just a [...]

By |June 23rd, 2022|Categories: Employee Highlight|0 Comments

Offshore wind energy could bring over $140 billion to North Carolina

North Carolina is known for its exceptional solar capabilities, but what about its wind energy? Recent advancements in wind energy technology have made wind energy an economical and reliable source of power in North Carolina and throughout the Southeast. Wind energy can help combat climate change while creating high-paying jobs in manufacturing and shipping turbine components.  North Carolina is home to the first large-scale coastal wind farm in the Southeast, called the Amazon Wind Farm North Carolina – Desert Wind. It came online in 2017, producing enough electricity to power roughly 61,000 homes a year. Since this wind farm came [...]

By |June 15th, 2022|Categories: Industry|0 Comments

Solar continues to soar in North Carolina

Renewable energy abounds in North Carolina. North Carolina is first in the South and fourth in the nation for solar power generation, with solar comprising 8% of the state’s electricity mix. While the state has only one major wind farm on land, powerful offshore winds have enough power to meet the state’s energy usage many times over. This article, focusing on solar in particular, is the first in a series that discusses renewable energy in North Carolina. In the coming weeks, we'll cover North Carolina’s wind energy capacity as well.  Most of North Carolina’s 10 million residents get their electricity [...]

By |June 1st, 2022|Categories: Industry|0 Comments

Renewable energy continues to break records in 2022

Globally, the renewable energy sector continues to break records. Solar, wind and other clean sources generated 38% of the world’s electricity in 2021, surpassing coal (36%). For the first time, solar and wind generated 10% of this share of electricity, according to research from global energy think tank Ember. Taken together, wind and solar are now the fourth-largest source of electricity in the world. Renewable energy’s market share has doubled since the Paris Climate Agreement was signed (4.6%) in 2015.  In 2021, wind and solar were also the fastest-growing forms of electricity worldwide for the 17th year in a row. [...]

By |May 26th, 2022|Categories: Industry|0 Comments

Windlift engineer & Chapel Hill native Ellie Funkhouser

Meet Eleanor Funkhouser, also known as Ellie. As one of Windlift’s tech engineers, she splits her time between designing and testing individual components and subsystems of the Airborne Power Generator (APG) and testing the entire system as a whole. She joined the team in January 2021, quickly demonstrating tenacity and creativity in solving the many complexities of the APG.    Ellie with her father on a hike.   Ellie is a Chapel Hill native turned Bostonian for college at Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering. She worked as an applications engineer for three years at Accu Tech after [...]

By |May 18th, 2022|Categories: Employee Highlight|0 Comments
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