Offshore Wind Power Picks Up Momentum Along the Atlantic Coast
"Two energy firms will spend more than $1.8 million to potentially develop wind farms in federal waters off the coast of New Jersey," reports Devin Henry.
"The companies — RES America Developments and U.S. Wind Inc.— won the rights in a lease auction on Monday. Combined, the firms bought up leases for nearly 344,000 acres of space, the Department of Interior announced."
The 344,000 acres is located seven miles of the coast of New Jersey, extending about 21 miles into the Atlantic Ocean. Department of the Interior Secretary Sally Jewell is quoted in the article describing the auction as the first step toward a "sustainable offshore wind program" for communities located on the Atlantic Coast.
Following that news, came an announcement this week that Denmark-based DONG Energy A/S, "is proposing what could be North America’s largest offshore wind farm 15 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard…" Jay Fitzgerald reports on that proposal, noting that the plans for 100 wind turbines would more than double the output of the Cape Wind project, which is stalled after a financial setback in January 2015.
DONG has already acquired the lease for the area—one of the offshore stretches approved by the federal government for offshore wind power generation. The next steps in approval, along with construction, are expected to require patience. According to Fitzgerald, "DONG Energy faces lengthy Massachusetts and US permitting processes that include environmental reviews and approvals for where its power lines would come ashore. Once those approvals are in hand, DONG Energy said, it would take about three years to build the wind farm, and the first phase could include 30 to 35 turbines and be in service by early next decade."