Groups Seek Obama’s Offshore Wind Help

OCEAN CITY — After several failed attempts at the state level to develop vast offshore wind farms off the mid-Atlantic including a proposed 100-turbine field off the coast of Ocean City, hundreds of clean energy advocates this week penned a letter seeking a higher authority’s effort to get the job done.

Over 200 clean energy advocates, environmental organizations and individuals, including some Maryland lawmakers, this week sent a letter to President Obama urging his administration to intercede and expedite the development of offshore wind energy off the mid-Atlantic including the proposed wind farm off the coast of Ocean City. In each of the last three General Assembly sessions, Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley has put forth wind farm legislation unsuccessfully.

This week, several hundred offshore wind advocates from around the country co-authored the bill to Obama, including Environment Maryland, an umbrella agency of sorts for the 26 signatories from Maryland on the letter.

“There are vast untapped reserves of wind energy off our coast that we can capture to reduce pollution and ramp up the clean energy economy,” said Environment Maryland Director Tommy Landers this week. “This letter shows broad agreement among environmental groups and a diversity of other stakeholders that our state and national leaders should act to steadily increase this important resource.”

The letter urges the Obama Administration to continue to support offshore wind off the mid-Atlantic coast and help jumpstart stagnant projects including the proposals for Maryland and Delaware.

“We urge you to continue to champion the swift development of our offshore wind energy resources,” the letter reads. “We are encouraged by the administration’s efforts to date to advance offshore wind development in the Atlantic Ocean in an environmentally responsible manner. For the sake of our environment and the prospects of a vibrant, clean energy economy in America, we must have numerous wind farms spinning off our shores within the next few years and we need your continued leadership to make that vision a reality.”

The letter urges the president to support the development of the untapped, clean renewable energy source.

“For nearly every Atlantic coast state, offshore wind represents one of our best strategies to generate significant amounts of energy without creating more pollution,” the letter reads. “We can no longer afford to ignore this massive domestic energy source that has been producing thousands of jobs and megawatts of clean energy in Europe for over a decade.”

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