The Biden administration approved Wednesday the construction of major commercial-scale offshore wind farm to supply power to New York.
Why it matters: The approval for the installation of a dozen turbines near Rhode Island marks a major step in the administration’s ambitious plans to have 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030, powering more than 10 million homes.
- Officials see offshore wind as a key tool to help meet the White House goal of 100% carbon-free power by 2035, as part of a wider commitment to combating climate change.
Details: The 130-megawatt South Fork Wind project will be the first wind farm to power New York, transmitting power to Long Island, the Washington Post notes.
- The project “create about 340 jobs and provide enough power for about 70,000 homes,” per an Interior Department statement.
The big picture: The green light for the South Fork Wind project marks the second commercial-scale offshore wind farm approved by the Biden administration after the Vineyard Wind, a project off the Massachusetts coast.
- The Biden administration plans to identify and lease federal waters along seven coastal areas to offshore wind power developers by 2025.
Yes, but: The Biden administration has to overcome conservationists’ worries about the wind farms’ effect on endangered wales, people in the fishing industry’s concerns about their catch and coastal homeowner trepidations about their seas views, per WashPost.
Meanwhile, a $1.75 trillion social spending and climate bill passed by House Democrats earlier this month that includes over $300 billion in clean energy tax incentives for projects including the erection of wind turbines faces an uncertain future in the Senate.
- Changes to the bill are likely, with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) among those expressing concern at some aspects of the measure, Axios’ Ben Geman writes.
What they’re saying: Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said in a statement there’s “no time to waste in cultivating and investing in a clean energy economy that can sustain us for generations.
- “Just one year ago, there were no large-scale offshore wind projects approved in the federal waters of the United States. Today there are two, with several more on the horizon,” she added.
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Rebecca Falconer