Cape Wind Officials Held A Press Conference Downtown This Morning To Warn The Public That Backroom Deals In Washington DC

Cape Wind officials held a press conference downtown this morning, to warn the public that back-room deals in Washington, DC threaten the future of their proposed offshore wind farm in Nantucket Sound.

It looks like Alaskan representative Don Young's amendment, which would have killed the project immediately, is off the table, but it's been replaced by a compromise amendment, proposed by Alaskan senator Ted Stevens, which singles out Cape Wind, and gives ultimate last say to the state.

Here's the language of the new amendment, which has Cape Wind president Jim Gordon worried that five years and $20 million are about to go down the drain:


In any case, under the following conditions, in which a person requests the Secretary of the Army to take action to permit a wind energy facility:

(1) where the proposed site of the wind energy facility is within the area commonly known as Nantucket Sound; and
(2) the permit sought is under the authority of section 10 of the Act of March 3, 1899, popularly known as the Rivers and Harbors Appropriations Act of 1899 (chapter 425; 33 U.S.C. 403).

The Secretary of the Army shall only issue such permit if the Commandant of the Coast Guard and the adjacent state concur in writing, after the date of enactment of this Act, that no obstructions to navigation will result from the proposed structures or activity. The Commandant and the adjacent state shall provide in writing a determination on whether or not the proposed wind energy facility presents an obstruction to navigation within one year of the date of enactment of this Act or for requests made after the date of enactment of this Act the written determination shall be made within one year of the request for the permit. If no written determination is made by either the Commandant or  the adjacent state within the above specified time the Secretary of the Army shall proceed as if the non-responding entity has issued a written determination that no obstruction to navigation will result from the proposed structures or activities. The determination of the Commandant and the adjacent state shall not be arbitrary or capricious.

This provision shall expire five years from the date of enactment of this Act.

It begs several questions.

  • Why are two Alaskan congressmen targeting this project, and this project only? (Is it because the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound, which vigorously opposes the wind farm, retains a lobbyist who has worked closely with Don Young in the past?)
  • If the state had final say, what would be the procedure? Would the legislature have to sign off, or would it just be up to the governor?
  • If the governor has total veto power over energy projects, does that give Deval Patrick (the only official gubernatorial candidate who supports the wind farm) a boost?
  • Why the five-year expiration date? Is that how long the authors think it will take to permanently kill Cape Wind?
| More

 Friends' Activity   Popular 
All Blogs
Follow the Phoenix
  • newsletter
  • twitter
  • facebook
  • youtube
  • rss
Latest Comments
Search Blogs
Talking Politics Archives