Baltimore backs Maryland offshore
UPDATE: US Wind to install met mast at 750MW wind zone
The city of Baltimore is throwing its support behind two offshore wind projects proposed in federal waters off the coast of Maryland.
The 14-member city council this week unanimously approved a resolution urging the state Public Service Commission to approve one or both proposals.
Commissioners are considering Deepwater Wind’s 120MW Skipjack proposal and US Wind’s 248MW Maryland bid.
A decision on future Offshore Renewable Energy Credits is expected by 17 May.
Baltimore aims to create a Maryland-based offshore wind manufacturing hub to generate significant economic benefits in the region.
The city expects the 3100-acre Sparrows Point port, the former home of Bethlehem Steel, will play a leading role.
Both wind farm developers and several supply chain manufacturers have said they plan to use the site for construction staging as well as new production facilities.
US Wind meanwhile plans to “immediately” start the installation process for a meteorological tower in its 750MW Maryland offshore wind lease area after winning final approval from state regulators.
Maryland's Department of the Environment has issued an air emissions permit for the tower.
The developer also plans to work on an application for a Construction and Operations Plan to be submitted later this year to the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.
US Wind’s 750MW wind farm will include installation of up to 187 turbines some 19km to 27km off the coast of Ocean City.
"US Wind isn't just trying to build a few wind turbines off the coast -- we're trying to bring a new $16bn net export industry sector to Maryland," said US Wind project development director Paul Rich.
"Each new fabrication facility that we can bring to Maryland because of offshore wind will generate $30m to $50m of investment in infrastructure and thousands of trained workers," he added.