Maine for Offshore Wind
Offshore wind energy is Maine’s largest untapped resource. With significant technical potential relative to its energy demand and the strongest winds of the East Coast off its coast, offshore wind in Maine could power the state many times over.
Maine is currently moving forward with the Maine Aqua Ventus project south of Monhegan Island that consists of one floating turbine. This project is estimated to bring many jobs to Maine. According to the University of Maine, construction is expected to start in 2022 and the turbine is expected to be operating by 2023.
This project only scratches the surface of Maine’s potential for offshore wind. Governor Mills has supported offshore wind, allowing the Aqua Ventus project to move forward. She has also established the Maine Offshore Wind Initiative, soliciting input from local officials, Maine tribal representatives, marine interest groups, the commercial fishing industry, environmental organizations, academics, scientists, business organizations and labor unions.The state of Maine is also part of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s Gulf of Maine Intergovernmental Regional Task Force on offshore wind along with Massachusetts and New Hampshire.
Future of Offshore Wind
The State of Maine has announced its intention to apply for the first floating offshore wind research array in the nation. The Gulf of Maine has incredible potential for a significant offshore wind industry to thrive. Research on floating offshore wind technology will allow the State and other stakeholders such as the fishing industry to learn about the impacts and benefits of this new technology, with the aim of learning best practices for how offshore wind can coexist with existing ocean uses and avoid, minimize, or mitigate impacts to wildlife and the environment. This research could potentially allow Maine to capitalize on its abundant renewable energy resource and protect its environment by mitigating the effects of climate change.
Contractors, developer promote offshore wind jobs deal for Maine
The developer of a floating wind demonstration project off Monhegan Island has reached an agreement with organized labor unions that’s expected to lead to skilled workers being hired for hundreds of construction jobs in a burgeoning new industry.
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