NRDC's POSITION ON THE CAPE WIND PROJECT, NANTUCKET SOUND
NRDC is often asked where we stand on the proposed Cape Wind offshore wind project, which would be located in Nantucket Sound, off Massachusetts. NRDC is a strong supporter of renewable energy, wind power and off-shore wind power. NRDC is also a strong supporter of ocean conservation. Earlier this year, NRDC reviewed the voluminous draft environmental impact statement for the Cape Wind project and weighed in both on the many environmental benefits of the project and areas of potential concern which still require resolution.
NRDC's Katherine Kennedy explains:
"The environmental standards set for the Cape Wind project will create an important precedent for the future offshore wind facilities in the United States, so it is crucial for us to set the bar in the right place.
"The air quality, public health and global warming benefits of the Cape Wind project are significant and beyond rational dispute. It is also critical to ensure that the project will protect marine wildlife and comply with all applicable laws. Cape Wind should strive to be an environmental model for other wind farms to follow.
"NRDC believes that the Cape Wind project would have significant air quality, public health and global warming benefits. We have also recommended additional steps for the project to take to protect marine mammals during construction. We have identified some remaining unresolved issues around the project's impact on birds, most importantly the endangered Roseate Tern, and have asked the federal government and the developer to work with avian experts to address these questions and come up with solutions.
"NRDC's approach, if followed, will provide the best path to realizing the air and energy benefits of the Cape Wind project while also creating a responsible and positive model for future offshore wind development."