Decision on first US offshore wind power plant expected soon

This area is a highly significant historical and symbolic property for the Wampanoag tribe, who ask that the wind energy project be relocated.

Eight years after the proposal of the first project draft, the final decision on the construction of Cape Wind – the first offshore wind farm in the USA – will soon be taken. It is actually scheduled for April, said Interior Secretary Ken Salazar after a meeting with the proposed developers of the project, the municipalities concerned and American natives, aimed at forging a compromise to satisfy all parties involved.

The Cape Wind facility should be constructed in Nantucket Sound, an area on the Atlantic coast of Massachusetts, which has great historical, symbolic and cultural importance for the Wampanoag tribe, and is therefore eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. For this reason the Wampanoag tribe is concerned about the project and asked that the plant be relocated in adjacent sites.

The sponsoring Cape Wind Association has a very different attitude, since it is confident that the project will be approved if its benefits and consequences are carefully assessed. Furthermore, wind farm designers are willing to agree to a number of objections made in order to overcome the concerns of the community of Native Americans.

The Cape Wind project foresees the placement of 130 wind turbines with a total capacity of 420 MW. The energy produced would meet 75% of the electricity consumption on Cape Cod and nearby islands (approximately 230,000 inhabitants). The investment is expected to amount to 1.6 billion dollars.