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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

May 15, 2012

Offshore Transmission Line Takes a Step Forward

By MATTHEW L. WALD, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2012-05-15 11:21:14

A pioneering proposal to build a wind power transmission line on the ocean floor from southern Virginia to northern New Jersey cleared a hurdle on Monday when the Interior Department opened the way for the project’s sponsors to start work on an environmental impact statement. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, part of the Interior Department, said that no competitor had emerged for the right-of-way for the proposed transmission line, known as the Atlantic Wind Connection, allowing the bureau to issue a “determination of no competitive interest.” By linking wind farms 15 to 20 miles off the coast, the backbone would greatly reduce the number of individual radial lines needed to bring the energy to shore. [ read more … ]

Interior announces progress on Atlantic transmission ‘backbone’

Phil Taylor, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2012-05-15 11:21:35

The Obama administration is moving forward with a transmission project to connect several thousand megawatts of offshore wind energy in the Atlantic Ocean, after confirming that there is no competitive interest from other developers. Interior Deputy Secretary David Hayes today announced that Atlantic Grid Holdings LLC is the only firm interested in building a 300-mile high-voltage transmission line from New York to Virginia, clearing the way for the agency to initiate an environmental review. [ read more … ]

CES would have to limit cost increases to 5% to pass Congress — study

Nick Juliano, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2012-05-15 11:22:01

Americans would be willing to pay about 13 percent more on their annual electric bills to support a clean energy standard of 80 percent by 2035, although members of Congress would be unwilling to support any policy that carried larger than a 5 percent annual price increase, according to a study published this week. Americans are generally willing to pay more for electricity if utilities were required to generate the bulk of their power from clean sources, but there is unlikely to be sufficient support in Congress for such a policy unless annual electric bills increase by less than 5 percent, according to a study published this week in the journal Nature Climate Change. By contrast, a proposed CES bill from Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) is estimated to raise electricity costs by an average of 18 percent in 2035, though the increases would be more modest when they first took effect [ read more … ]

Final approval of Calif. project marks renewables milestone

Scott Streater, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2012-05-15 11:22:17

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has authorized construction of the largest wind farm project on federal land in California, a major milestone in BLM’s ongoing efforts to significantly expand wind power production in the Golden State. Salazar signed a record of decision (ROD) late Friday for the Ocotillo Express Wind Energy Facility, which calls for stringing together 112 wind power turbines across about 10,000 acres managed by the Bureau of Land Management in Southern California’s Imperial County. [ read more … ]

Note: News clips provided do not necessarily reflect the views of coalition or its member governors.