USA: New Bedford’s Biggest Opportunities Lie in Offshore Wind, Mayor Mitchell Says
New Bedford’s Mayor Jon Mitchell, spoke about the city’s progress in offshore wind sector and highlighted the importance of offshore wind development for the city in his State of the City address on Thursday, March 21.
“Today, thanks to the hard work of the residents, employees and supporters of our great City, there is much progress to report. This past year we received the green light for the construction of the nation’s first specialized marine terminal for offshore wind energy, positioning us to become the birthplace of a new industry,“ the Mayor said.
He emphasized advantages that New Bedford has in the downtown historic district and its waterfront, saying that the city will continue to promote the waterfront and its linkages to the downtown cultural district and sponsor activities related to those areas.
“But our biggest opportunities lie in offshore wind development,“ Mayor Jon Mitchell said in his speech.
He continued: “New Bedford’s advantages, ranging from its industrial port to its proximity to ocean wind areas, offered the potential for an entirely new industry to take root and flourish here.
“But for a time, it appeared that the New Bedford Marine Terminal project might not be moving forward, and that its future was uncertain. Action needed to be taken fast, and in the past year, we have taken the bull by the horns. We have worked handin- glove with the Patrick administration to move the project along, especially in the areas of land assembly, permitting, and advocacy with federal officials. It is an enormously complicated project with multiple layers of review and many issues for the City to negotiate and resolve. Governor Patrick and Lt. Governor Murray, and their team, especially Energy and Environment Secretary Rick Sullivan, Clean Energy Center CEO Alicia Barton and Wind Energy Director Bill White, deserve tremendous credit for their leadership and support along the way.
“With the EPA’s go-ahead a few months ago and a ground breaking coming soon, we are in the ball game now. As mayor, I pledge to you that we will not sit back and passively hope for opportunities come to us.
“The goal is nothing if not ambitious, and nothing is guaranteed, but it is worthy of every ounce of our energy. And we have rolled up our sleeves and have gotten down to the work of building this new industry here. “
Offshore WIND Staff, March 22, 2013; Image: Port of New Bedford