Attempt to Kill Cape Cod Wind Project Could Have Major Implications for Nation's Clean Energy Future
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Green Party leaders today announced their support for an offshore wind turbine project being proposed by Cape Wind Associates six miles offshore of Nantucket Sound.
"This 130-turbine wind farm will provide 74% of the electricity used by Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, and would displace two million barrels of oil each year," said Julie Risser, Green candidate for Minnesota State Senate in District 41.
Greens noted that the project has support from most major environmental groups, as well as the Seafarers' International Union, which includes local Cape Cod fishermen.
Among the wind farm's opponents are wealthy Cape Cod homeowners, including Mass. Sen. Ted Kennedy, his nephew Robert Kennedy, Jr., and the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound, whose first president was CEO of Phelps-Dodge, a mining corporation that placed first on the EPA list of toxic emitters in Arizona and New Mexico. Other opponents include Senators John Warner and Lamar Alexander, whose families also own waterfront property on the Cape.
Green Party activists are urging Congress to reject provisions in the Coast Guard bill (Section 414 of the Coast Guard conference report) that would allow Gov. Mitt Romney, who opposes the project, to cancel it, see Union of Concerned Scientists here.
The Green Party has consistently called on Congress to increase funding for conservation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy.
As noisy as a whisper at 40 feet, Greenhouse gases rise
Contrary to rumors, noise from the wind farm will be minimal: approximately 30 decibels, equivalent to a whisper at 40 feet, less than the ambient breeze and much less than the noisy, polluting, and energy-inefficient power boats operated by some wealthy Cape Cod residents. The wind farm will occupy an area equivalent to one New York City block of "water sheet" although it is spread over 23 acres of Horseshoe Shoal.
Greens, citing recent figures that the U.S. emitted more greenhouse gases in 2004 than at any time in history, stressed that the wind farm project will open up the field of wind power for widespread development across the country which in turn will make a significant dent in emissions that contribute to global warming.
"Cape Wind is the largest renewable-energy project east of the Mississippi, making it a vital building block in the struggle to stop global warming," said Charles Komanoff, of Komanoff Energy Associates and a respected energy economist and environmental activist. "It is also a test for the environmental movement: do we keep faith with the promises we made as antinuke and antifossil fuel activists throughout the 1970s and 1980s to embrace energy efficiency, solar and wind power? The choice is crystal clear, and Greens are leading the way."
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