The Biden administration on Tuesday announced its final approval of the nation’s first commercial-scale offshore wind farm, a major step toward President Biden’s goal of expanding renewable energy production across the United States.
The Vineyard Wind project calls for up to 84 turbines to be installed in the Atlantic Ocean about 12 nautical miles off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, Mass. Together, they could generate about 800 megawatts of electricity, enough to power about 400,000 homes. The administration estimates that the project will create about 3,600 jobs.
The idea of a wind farm off the Massachusetts coast was conceived two decades ago but ran into repeated setbacks, delays and well-funded opposition from waterfront property owners before the Trump administration moved to cancel the project’s permitting process.
The Biden administration jump-started progress on Vineyard Wind in March as part of its larger push to tackle climate change.
“A clean energy future is within our grasp in the United States,” Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said Tuesday. “The approval of this project is an important step toward advancing the administration’s goals to create good paying union jobs while combating climate change and powering our nation. Today is one of many actions we are determined to take to open the doors of economic opportunity to more Americans.”
The administration has pledged to build 30,000 megawatts of offshore wind in the United States by 2030. It’s a target the White House contended would spark $12 billion in capital investments annually, supporting 77,000 direct and indirect jobs by the end of the decade.