By Alex DeMetrick

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Wind already generates enough electricity to power 29,000 homes in Maryland.

A new study released Thursday find a double benefit from increasing wind energy in Maryland.

Alex Demetrick reports.

The study by Environment Maryland says scaling it up could power 750,000.

“By 2030, wind energy in Maryland can save us 8 million megatonnes of carbon pollution,” Bailey Rehnberg with Environment Maryland said. “That’s roughly the equivalent of two coal fired power plants.”

Pushing for cleaner air is why the group released its study in the shadow of a Baltimore hospital.

Respiratory illness like asthma are made worse by air pollution, especially for children, which has a national parents group backing the study.

“If you protect the children, you’re also protecting adults from asthma,” Trisha Sheehan with Moms Clean Air Force said.

It’s not a new cause. backers of wind power and the O’Malley administration have cleared the way for turbines someday being built off Ocean City, Md.

More problematic is a proposed large scale wind farm on the Eastern shore.

Critics say it posed a threat to military aviation from Patuxent Naval Air Station.

But supporters say there’s room for compromise on any project.

“We are advocated of proper sighting and land review before any project is started,” Bailey said.

So far the largest is a ridge top in western Maryland and smaller scattered wind turbines around the state.

You have to go to YouTube to find the kind of wind farms western states are building right now.

The Environment Maryland study backs other reports, which find the greatest return on wind energy will be found off the state’s coast.

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