Cape Wind Project Hits Another Roadblock

Cape Wind Associates might suffer another setback in their efforts to build a 468MW offshore wind farm in Nantucket Sound, Massachusetts, after the state’s energy agency recommended that the company’s permit for two underwater power lines should not be extended for two additional years, according to The Boston Globe.

The developer said that the decision reached by the Energy Facilities Siting Board on Tuesday is ”tentative” and that the board is expected to act on the recommendation next week.

Cape Wind had earlier requested for the permit for the two power lines to be extended until May 2017.

In a 26-page decision, the board’s presiding officer James Buckley noted that Cape Wind Associates could not demonstrate that the project will enter construction phase by mid-2017, adding that the construction is likely to be postponed further after Cape Wind lost key contracts with National Grid and Eversource Energy back in 2015.

Buckley added that at his point, Cape Wind would need ”a lengthy, almost open-ended extension period,” which was deemed ”unreasonable” by the board.

Cape Wind should also submit a new request for the extension of the permit, Buckley said.

Cape Wind Associates obtained the commercial lease to construct and operate the wind farm in October 2010. The project will consist of up to 130 Siemens 3.6MW wind turbine generators. The electricity generated from the project could provide about 75 percent of the electricity demand for Cape Cod and the Islands of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket.

The lease area is comprised of approximately 46 square miles in Nantucket Sound, 25 square miles of which make up the project footprint area on Horseshoe Shoal. The lease includes a 5-year site assessment term and a 28-year operations term.

Back in February 2015, the developer submitted a request for a two-year suspension of the operations term of its commercial lease, which was approved by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) in July 2015. No construction or installation activities related to the commercial lease may occur during the lease suspension period which expires in July 2017.

Offshore WIND Staff

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