Wednesday, January 5, 2011

NOIA sees positive signs for tapping energy off Massachusetts

The National Ocean Industries Association applauds the US Department of the Interior’s recent Request for Interest concerning renewable leasing off Massachusetts and the availability of the commercial lease for the Cape Wind offshore wind project.

“I applaud Secretary [Ken] Salazar’s forward movement…on offshore renewable energy,” NOIA President Randall Luthi said in a news release. “It is gratifying to see the publication of the commercial lease for the Cape Wind project, which has undergone extensive studies, reviews, and litigation this past decade.”

Luthi sees the Request for Interest “as a positive indicator that there will indeed be more such leases to come. “

Acknowledging that offshore wind energy eventually will be helpful to the overall US energy supply, Luthi noted that analysts and others anticipate that it will be decades before offshore renewables “make a real dent in the domestic energy demand.”

Luithi encourages Salazar to commit himself “equally, if not more so, to the efficient and timely permitting for offshore oil and gas projects that will produce energy now and provide more jobs today.”

In November 2010, Cape Wind announced its first buyer. The Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities approved a contract in which Cape Wind plans to sell half of its power to National Grid, the state's largest electric utility.

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