Cape Wind Clear State Environmental Hurdle: CLF Lauds Administration’s Commitment to Clean Energy

Brian Barth

Boston, MA (March 30, 2007) Cape Wind cleared an important state environmental review hurdle today as Secretary of Environment and Energy Ian Bowles approved the project’s Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR). The Conservation Law Foundation, New England ’s leading environmental group, praised Bowles’ decision, saying it was the right result after years of rigorous environmental review and highlighted the state’s commitment to combating climate change by supporting renewable energy.

“Projects like the Cape Wind offshore wind energy proposal are critically important in our effort to combat climate change and lessen our dangerous dependence on fossil fuels,” said CLF President Phil Warburg. “Today, the Patrick Administration showed us that the state is ready to respond to the global crisis of climate change by embracing responsible renewable energy solutions and moving them forward through environmental and permitting review.”

In their public comments on the FEIR, CLF and eleven other environmental groups said that the project will help the state meet mandatory renewable energy targets. “If built, the Cape Wind Project will help meet these clean energy goals set by the Commonwealth by contributing a significant amount of clean energy to the regional power grid,” the groups wrote in their letter.

The groups had also expressed appreciation for the scope of Cape Wind ’s extensive environmental analysis and noted the state’s jurisdiction extends only three miles from its coastline, covering just electrical transmission lines, not the platforms or turbines (which lay in federal waters).

Cape Wind , a 130 turbine proposed project in Nantucket Sound, now faces a series of state and federal permitting processes, in addition to ongoing comprehensive federal environmental review.

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