offshore wind

The US Department of Interior is planning to auction nearly 80,000 acres of offshore Maryland for commercial wind energy development.

The competitive lease sale, which is a part of President Obama’s comprehensive Climate Action Plan to create jobs, develop domestic clean energy resources and reduce carbon pollution in US, is scheduled for 19 August 2014.

The US Department of Interior Secretary Sally Jewell: "Thanks to Governor O’Malley’s leadership and significant stakeholder involvement through BOEM’s Maryland Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force, we have reached another milestone as we strengthen our nation’s foothold in the new energy frontier."

Around 16 companies have been qualified to participate in the auction of Maryland Wind Energy Area, which is expected to support between 850MW and 1,450MW of commercial wind generation, enough electricity to power 300,000 homes, according to analysis prepared by the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

"Around 16 companies have been qualified to participate in the auction of Maryland Wind Energy Area."

Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley said: "As we continue our work to drive up renewable energy generation in Maryland by 20 percent by 2022, the O’Malley-Brown Administration is committed to continuing to work with our federal partners to do everything we can to meet this goal and create a stronger, more sustainable future for generations to come."

The wind energy area is located around 10nm off the coast of Ocean City, Maryland.

Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) acting director Cruickshank said: "BOEM and the task force members have worked collaboratively to develop a wind energy area that has exceptional wind energy potential."

Image: US to offer 80,000 acres offshore Maryland for wind energy development. Photo: courtesy of xedos4/