The mood was upbeat at last week’s offshore wind industry conference in Atlantic City, New Jersey on October 7 and 8. The massive, long-awaited Cape Wind and Block Island offshore wind energy projects are kicking into high gear from the private sector, the Interior Department is steaming full speed ahead with the leasing process for additional Atlantic coast sites, and earlier this year the Energy Department announced federal funding for two more Atlantic coast projects that will serve as R&D platforms for cutting edge, cost-reducing offshore wind energy technologies.
As a brand new coastal industry emerging in the age of rapid climate change, the offshore wind energy industry has the good fortune of timing on its side. All that new infrastructure, from turbines and platforms to cables and onshore facilities, can be designed and sited for long term operational reliability with rising sea levels and severe weather taken into account.
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