The Interior Department on Monday cleared the way for a proposed offshore transmission line backed by Internet giant Google, which could potentially enable up to 7,000 megawatts of wind energy generated offshore to be brought to the national power grid.
Deputy Interior Secretary David Hayes and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Director Tommy Beaudreau announced that the agency found "no competitive interest" for the proposed offshore cable, meaning the project can now move forward to an environmental review that would then enable Atlantic Grid Holdings to begin building the project.
"The first-of-its-kind Atlantic Wind Connection is an encouraging sign of significant industry interest in developing the infrastructure to support offshore wind development," Hayes said. "It's the type of project that will spur innovation that will help us stand up a clean energy economy to power communities up and down the East Coast."
The proposed project would stretch along the coasts of New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia and is backed by Google, Good Energies, Japan's Marubeni Corp., and the Belgian transmission company Elia. The transmission line would collect wind power generated by offshore facilities along the Atlantic coast and bring it to the grid.