Home Energy and Environment Virginia Sierra Club Applauds Federal Auction of Virginia’s Offshore Wind Energy Area

Virginia Sierra Club Applauds Federal Auction of Virginia’s Offshore Wind Energy Area

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The following is from the Virginia Sierra Club. I strongly agree with Glen Besa that Dominion Virginia Power (the likely winner) “should be required to move forward with offshore wind development without delay and be prohibited from dragging its feet in fully developing Virginia’s entire lease area.” The problem is, I don’t have much faith that they WILL move forward without dealy and not drag their feet. We’ll see…

Sierra Club Urges Rapid and Full Development of Entire Offshore Area

[Washington, DC] – Today the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announced it will hold a competitive lease sale on Sept. 4, 2013 in which it will auction off approximately 112,799 acres offshore Virginia for commercial wind energy development.

In response Glen Besa, Director of the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter, issued the following statement:

“After years of intensive problem-solving attention by all stakeholders involved, to include military, shipping, government and environmental interests, we are finally arriving close to the point in the Federal process where we pass the baton of our work to Virginia’s actual developers of its offshore wind resources”.

“While we applaud the diligence of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to move aggressively with the lease sale process, we also urge their continued dedication to moving offshore wind development along.  The eventual winning bidder, likely Dominion Virginia Power, should be required to move forward with offshore wind development without delay and be prohibited from dragging its feet in fully developing Virginia’s entire lease area.”

“Virginian’s are already suffering the impacts of climate disruption from increased flooding on our coasts to heat waves and super storms. We’re ready to build a cleaner, safer and more reliable renewable energy economy here. We must move as quickly as possible to catch up to other states who are ready to start installing full-scale offshore wind farms along the Northeast coast in the next few years.”

  • Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe made the following statement on the U.S. Department of the Interior’s announcement that it will be conducting its second offshore wind development leasing plan in Virginia:

    “I applaud today’s announcement by the U.S. Department of the Interior that it will be conducting an auction of more than 112,000 acres off Virginia’s coast for a private sector-led offshore wind development.

    “This is a critical step forward to make offshore wind power a significant part of Virginia’s energy supply. Today, Virginia imports much of its energy from other states. And the development of renewable energy sources grows at a far slower pace than important conventional sources like coal, nuclear, and natural gas. The successful development of a major offshore wind power project will diversify – and make more secure – Virginia’s energy supply, while creating well-paying jobs right here in the Commonwealth.

    “Virginia’s work with the federal government to focus on the potential of offshore wind began under then-Gov. Kaine and has intensified under Gov. McDonnell. I applaud them both. Virginia must remain engaged with the private sector in the years ahead to bring offshore wind power and the thousands of jobs it promises to our great Commonwealth.”

  • Joint statement from Virginia Conservation Network, National Wildlife Federation & Southern Environmental Law Center: http://www.southernenvironment