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Ocean City plays far-shore card

Maryland wind farms need to be at least 37km from shore, say officials

Ocean City plays far-shore card image

Officials in Ocean City, Maryland are ratcheting up criticism of offshore wind farms with a demand that turbines be built at least 37km from shore.

State regulators are reviewing two applications for offshore renewable energy credits. 

The Ocean City council and mayor sent a second letter this week to the Maryland Public Service Commission complaining the proposed turbines would be too visible from the beach and would harm tourism.

US Wind plans to build a 250MW project about 19km offshore and has already offered to move it another 8km farther away.

Deepwater Wind said it is willing to discuss shifting its 120MW Skipjack project, now slated to start about 27km off the coast of Maryland.

The council supports the "concept" of offshore wind "provided it is done in a responsible manner". However it will only back the projects if they are not visible from the Ocean City shoreline.

Based on the applicants' proposed turbine sizes, the US Wind project must be at least 37km away while the Deepwater wind farm must be 42km from Ocean City, said council.

The state commission is reviewing the projects and expects to award funding by 17 May.

Image: Ocean City, Maryland (USACE)

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