Cape Wind: the reality

Today at the American Wind Energy Association’s annual conference, Secretary of the Interior, Ken Salazar, and Jim Gordon, CEO of Cape Wind signed the first permit for an offshore wind farm in US waters, marking the end of a nine-year regulatory hurdle. “Responsibly developing this clean, renewable, domestic resource will stimulate investment in cutting-edge technology, create good, solid jobs for American workers, and promote our nation’s competitiveness, security, and prosperity,” Salazar said in a statement. He also reaffirmed his commitment to streamlining the permitting process for future offshore wind projects. This is something CCAN has been working very hard on. It shouldn’t take longer to permit an offshore wind farm that generates clean, renewable energy than an offshore drilling rig that can cause enough damage to shut down our entire coast, harming important industries to our coastal towns.

The Cape Wind announcement comes just days after Secretary Salazar approved the first large-scale solar-power projects on U.S. public lands in California and a announcement from President Obama about his plans to put solar panels back on the White House roof after a 30 year absence. Hopefully we will see a continued commitment to the environment from this administration.

As I’ve mentioned in an earlier post, this victory is personal for me since I spent almost 4 years working to make Cape Wind a reality. With today’s announcement, I can breathe a sigh of relief that it’s finally becoming real.