The fight over Cape Wind – a $1 billion, 24-square-mile offshore wind farm proposed for Nantucket Sound – has dragged on so long (9 years) that books have been written about it. But finally, finally, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has announced that he’ll be giving the project the green light.
Some numbers: Cape Wind’s 130 turbines will create 1,000 construction jobs and produce 468 mega watts of power – about the same amount that a “medium sized coal-fired power plant” would generate, as Salazar pointed out. As to CO2 reductions, Cape Wind will cut 700,000 tons per year – that’s the equivalent of taking 175,000 cars off the roads.
It gets better. Cape Wind is our nation’s first offshore wind farm, and Salazar made it clear, when he announced his decision in Boston, that he sees this pioneer project as just the beginning. “This will be the first of many projects up and down the Atlantic coast, which I expect will come online in the years ahead as we build a new energy future for our country,” he said.
Watch Salazar make the announcement here.
It seems as though NIMBYers (Not In My BackYarders) might have to take a seat on this one. Who knows – maybe naysayers and Nantucket/Cape residents will come to enjoy the peaceful sight (speaking from experience – I have stood smack in the middle of a wind farm in Vermont, and enjoyed the sights and sounds) of the actually quite graceful turbines whirring away off the coast. In any case, they may now have to like it or leave it: you don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.