New Jersey Joins OffShore Wind Consortium

On June 8, 2010, Governor Chris Christie joined nine East Coast state governors in signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the U.S. Department of the Interior, which creates the Atlantic Offshore Wind Energy Consortium. The consortium is intended to foster federal-state cooperation for commercial wind development on the Outer Continental Shelf off the Atlantic coast.

According to U.S. Secretary of the Interior, Ken Salazar, wind could supply 20% of the nation’s electricity needs by 2030 and create a quarter of a million jobs.

New Jersey DEP Commissioner Bob Martin stated, “It opens the door of economic opportunity, allowing us to lure companies that manufacture the components of wind turbines, creating green jobs to harness the power of nature and provide our resident with a renewable energy supply.”

In a May 1, 2010, article, Abby Gruen of the Star Ledger, reports on 3 offshore wind projects currently underway off the coast of New Jersey, including a 20 megawatt project proposed for 3 miles off the coast of N.J. She notes that there is little opposition to wind energy in NJ in contrast to Massachusetts, where local opposition threatens its first offshore project.

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