The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Obama Administration Inches Toward Guaranteeing $150 Million Loan For Nation's First Offshore Wind Farm
The Cape Wind project faced a dozen opposers in court over the years, but it has never been closer to reality.
The U.S. Department of Energy on Tuesday announced the first step toward issuing a $150 million loan guarantee to help Cape Wind begin constructing the nation's first offshore wind farm as early as next year. The commercial-scale operation would create a capacity of 360 megawatts of energy off the coast of Cape Cod, MA.
The DOE is deeming the announcement as a "conditional commitment" with a promise to monitor the project's development before closing the loan guarantee. The DOE would join a slew of public and private lenders helping bring the $2.6 billion farm to light.
"Today's announcement by the Department of Energy represents an important endorsement by the United States government of the environmental, economic and energy benefits that offshore wind will provide to our country," Cape Wind President Jim Gordon said in a statement. "We appreciate Energy Secretary [Ernest] Moniz helping launch the American offshore wind industry, creating jobs and unleashing a new clean energy source for the nation."
Moniz joined Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, U.S. Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-MA) and U.S. Rep. Bill Keating (D-MA) to make the announcement.
“Offshore wind will not only provide a new, clean source of energy for the United States, it will reduce American reliance on fossil fuel, mitigate climate change and jump start a new U.S. industry that will create thousands of clean energy jobs,” Patrick said.
Updated project figures show that it would create about 400 construction jobs and 50 operations jobs. Its 130 or so turbines would create much of the electricity needed to power Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard.
“There is tremendous potential for producing clean, pollution-free wind energy off of our coasts," Environment America Energy Program Director Rob Sargent said. "We are thrilled that the Obama administration has announced another critical step forward in making this vision a reality for America. As states transition away from dirty energy under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Clean Power Plan, offshore wind energy is the Atlantic Coast’s largest pollution-free resource."
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Tara Lohan
If I were to open my refrigerator, the origins of most of the food wouldn't be too much of a mystery — the milk, cheese and produce all come from relatively nearby farms. I can tell from the labels on other packaged goods if they're fair trade, non-GMO or organic.
By Mark Hertsgaard and Kyle Pope
Some good news, for a change, about climate change: When hundreds of newsrooms focus their attention on the climate crisis, all at the same time, the public conversation about the problem gets better: more prominent, more informative, more urgent.
By Jeremy Hance
VIETNAM, July 2019 – I'm chasing a ghost, I think not for the first time, as night falls and I gather up my gear in a hotel in a village in southern Vietnam. I pack my camera, a bottle of water, and a poncho; outside the window I can see a light rain.
By Bailey Hopp
If you had to choose a diamond for your engagement ring from below or above the ground, which would you pick … and why would you pick it? This is the main question consumers are facing when picking out their diamond engagement ring today. With a dramatic increase in demand for conflict-free lab-grown diamonds, the diamond industry is shifting right before our eyes.