US BOEM proposes sale of wind energy area offshore Massachusetts

The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has proposed the lease sale of the largest area of offshore Massachusetts for offshore wind energy projects.

The proposal for more than 742,000 acres lease sale is a part of the US President Obama’s Climate Action Plan to create American jobs, develop domestic clean energy resources and cut carbon pollution.

The 742,000-acre zone, which will be auctioned as four leases, is expected to double federal offshore acreage available for commercial-scale wind energy projects.

US Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said Massachusetts is heading towards developing a clean and sustainable energy future which creates jobs, cuts carbon pollution and develops domestic clean energy resources.

Jewell said, “Thanks to Governor Patrick’s vision and leadership, the competitive lease sale in Massachusetts will reflect the extensive and productive input from a number of important stakeholders.

“The 742,000-acre zone is expected to double federal offshore acreage available for commercial-scale wind energy projects.”

“This includes interests such as commercial fishing, shipping, cultural, historical, environmental and local communities to minimise conflicts and bring clarity and certainty to potential wind energy developers.”

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick said, “Through our investments and proactive planning, Massachusetts is poised to lead the charge in offshore wind energy development, with the economic and environmental benefits that come with it.”

Located approximately 12 miles offshore from Massachusetts in its northern boundary, the Massachusetts Wind Energy area extends 33 nautical miles southward and has an east / west extent of approximately 47 nautical miles.

BOEM acting director Cruickshank said, “The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has been working hand in hand with BOEM to foster responsible commercial wind development in federal waters off Massachusetts.”

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