The U.S. Virgin Islands Public Services Commission approved recognition of offshore wind developer Ocean Offshore Energy, LLC as a public utility on Thursday, June 27, Virgin Islands Daily News reports.
This decision has opened the way for the development of an offshore wind farm off the coast of St. Thomas, for which the company had already undertook a subsea survey and identified the exact location. The construction would start by the end of this year or in the first quarter of 2014, subject to approval from the Army Corps of Engineers and the Coastal Zone Management Commission, to which Ocean Offshore Energy is scheduled to submit final permit applications on July 17.
Located south of the Bovoni landfill, St. Thomas, the offshore wind farm would have a capacity of 10.5 MW. A single 1.5 MW turbine would be installed at first and the project would be expanded with three 3 MW wind turbines later on.
Offshore WIND Staff, July 1, 2013; Images: oceanoffshoreenergy