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Maryland Public Service Commissions Approve New Offshore Wind Projects – Environmental Groups Honor Maryland Public Service Commissions
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Maryland Public Service Commissions Approve New Offshore Wind Projects – Environmental Groups Honor Maryland Public Service Commissions

Baltimore, MD

Today, the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC), approved more than 1,650MW of offshore wind projectsUS Wind and Skipjack Offshore Energy. This decision locks US Wind in economic development commitments for Maryland’s offshore wind industry.

Maryland must move away from fossil fuels in favor of clean energy. Susan Stevens Miller is a senior attorney for Earthjustices Right To Zero campaign. It is crucial that both the US Wind projects and Skipjack are approved. To create more jobs for Marylanders, clean our air and meet Maryland’s ambitious climate targets, we must continue to expand Maryland’s wind industry.

The PSC approved Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Credits for US Wind for a 808.5 MW project. It will include approximately 55 turbines and the closest turbine is located not more than 15 minutes off the coast of Ocean City. Skipjacks 846MW project, which will have 60 turbines, will also be awarded Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Credits. The nearest turbine is located 20 miles away from Ocean City. The PSC asked the developers to create at most 10,324 direct job opportunities during the development, construction and operation phases of the project; to commit to certain goals to involve small, local and minority businesses; to pass 80% construction costs savings to ratepayers; and to contribute $6 million each the Maryland Offshore Wind Business Development Fund.

Although offshore wind has the promise of abundant, clean renewable energy it will require strong support from policymakers to get it off the ground. This milestone is important because it shows Maryland is not only participating but also winning the offshore wind race. Maryland is now at the forefront of offshore wind development thanks to this decision. We are delighted that both projects will invest in local manufacturing and supply chain, helping to grow Maryland’s clean-energy economy. Josh Tulkin, Sierra Club Maryland Chapter Director.

Maryland continued to be a leader of the burgeoning offshore energy industry with the 2019 passage of Clean Energy Jobs Act. This law requires that at least 1,200 MW more offshore wind development be completed by 2030.

This is a significant first step for Maryland in reclaiming its position as a national leader on clean energy solutions. Offshore wind energy must also be part of this equation. These projects have the potential for huge amounts of electricity generation without causing climate change. As these projects progress, it is crucial that Maryland’s overburdened and underserved residents have equal access to the benefits of offshore wind energy. Kim Coble is the executive director of Maryland League of Conservation Voters.

Maryland’s offshore wind is one its most abundant renewable energy resources. This is a key tool to help the state meet its climate change laws and transition away from polluting oil and gas. Maryland’s offshore wind energy laws ensure that the state’s growing offshore wind industry is rooted in local, high-quality jobs and investments in growing minority- and women-owned businesses.

This is a great result for Maryland’s Eastern Shore. We have been fighting for clean energy and more jobs for years. Now we can’t wait for turbines to be in the water. We are so grateful to Marylanders for supporting growing the clean energy economy.” Cindy Dillon, chairperson of the Sierra Clubs Lower Eastern Shore Group.

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