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American Wind Energy Association Comments on Vineyard Wind Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement

Washington D.C. - The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) yesterday filed comprehensive comments on the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM) draft supplemental environmental impact statement for Vineyard Wind, the first utility-scale offshore wind project in American federal waters. The full comments can be found here. AWEA today also issued the following statement:
“We urge BOEM to move toward timely approval of this milestone project, at last unlocking the enormous potential for offshore wind to meet our nation’s growing appetite for clean energy, create tens of thousands of jobs, and provide substantial investments into the American economy. It is time for our country to start catching up to global competitors, who are already harnessing the significant economic and environmental benefits of offshore wind.

The offshore wind industry remains committed to collaborating with other ocean users as we move forward. We are confident that the deployment of offshore wind can be compatible with commercial fishing and safe navigation, as has been demonstrated in many other countries that are already safely and successfully operating offshore wind farms. AWEA strongly agrees with the analysis from the U.S. Coast Guard and BOEM that the turbine spacing and uniform grid layout proposed by offshore developers for the adjacent Massachusetts and Rhode Island lease areas, which is reflected in Alternative D2 in the draft supplemental environmental impact statement and results in 200 transit lanes through the lease areas, will ‘maximize safe navigation,’ as the Coast Guard determined. There is no reason to adopt Alternative F to provide even wider transit lanes when Coast Guard and BOEM analysis demonstrates it is worse for navigation safety.    

By finishing the environmental review in a timely fashion, BOEM will signal that U.S. offshore wind is about to take off, attracting the 83,000 American jobs and $25 billion in annual economic investment this industry represents. On the other hand, additional delays and regulatory uncertainty will likely cause these careers and dollars to flow to Europe and other countries whose policies support clean, safe, and affordable offshore wind.” - Laura Morton, AWEA Senior Director of Policy and Regulatory Affairs, Offshore

Join AWEA and #SupportOffshoreWind. The United States has a vast offshore wind energy resource with a technical potential of more than 2,000 gigawatts (GW), nearly double the nation’s current electricity use. Harnessing America’s offshore wind resources presents an enormous opportunity to create tens of thousands of jobs, revitalize coastal communities, and deliver large amounts of clean, reliable energy to the country’s biggest population centers. AWEA is the national trade association of the U.S. wind industry, the largest source of renewable energy in the country. We represent 1,000 member companies and over 120,000 jobs in the U.S. economy and serve as a powerful voice for how wind works for America. Visit AWEA’s new website to learn more about the enormous economic benefits offshore wind power will bring to America and be sure to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.