BOSTON, September 9, 2016 — The path to a thriving American offshore wind power industry became clearer today following the release of the National Offshore Wind Strategy by the U.S. Department of Energy and Department of the Interior.
Nancy Sopko, Manager, Advocacy and Federal Legislative Affairs, made this statement on behalf of the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA):
“We commend the Department of Energy and Department of the Interior, through the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, for their commitment to developing offshore wind power as a new, inexhaustible American energy resource. The National Offshore Wind Strategy, five years in the making, builds on tremendous momentum created by the first American offshore wind farm which completed construction this summer. The U.S. is on the path to a brighter energy future – to the benefit of communities who will see cleaner air and American manufacturing that will help build, operate and maintain these wind farms. We look forward to continued engagement with these agencies to further reduce the cost of offshore wind and streamline permitting so that we can get these projects in the water as soon as possible.”
Offshore wind power is a proven technology that has reliably provided large amounts of clean energy to Europe for decades. The U.S. industry officially began this summer with construction now complete on the first offshore wind farm in American waters near Rhode Island. The Department of Energy’s Wind Vision estimates that offshore wind in the U.S. could reach 86 gigawatts (GW) of installed capacity by 2050. In comparison, today's U.S. land based wind fleet has surpassed 75 GW of installed capacity, enough to power 20 million average American homes and supplies roughly 5 percent of U.S. electricity.