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U.S. offshore wind gaining momentum as feds shop East Coast leases

Interior Dept. is offering a lease for 122,000 acres along the Outer Banks off the coast of North Carolina


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PHOTO: Deepwater Wind

The U.S.’s first offshore wind farm is expected to come online off Rhode Island this year. PHOTO: Deepwater Wind

KITTY HAWK, N.C.—The Obama Administration is inviting companies to bid for the right to build wind energy turbines off North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

Late last week, the Interior Department announced a proposed lease sale for 122,000 acres beginning about 28 miles off Kitty Hawk that includes part of the Outer Continental Shelf. The government has previously announced lease availability for two offshore areas near Wilmington and four areas offshore of South Carolina.

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will host public events in Raleigh and Kitty Hawk next month to describe the auction process. Once leases are awarded, there would be environmental studies of the specific areas and reviews of specific turbine construction plans.

As other development project begin churning, the first operational wind farm in U.S. offshore waters is expected to begin generating power off Rhode Island later this year.


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