Climate advocacy group Better Future Project has launched a campaign to save Cape Wind, the proposed 468 MW offshore wind planned for Horseshoe Shoal, off the coast of Massachusetts' Nantucket Island.
The group plans to petition Marcy Reed, president of National Grid in Massachusetts, to reinstate the utility's contract to buy 50% of the power produced by Cape Wind.
On Jan. 6, National Grid and NSTAR terminated their power purchase agreements with Cape Wind, citing the offshore wind developer's inability to close project financing by Dec. 31, 2014. Combined, the utilities had agreed to purchase 77.5% of Cape Wind's output.
On Feb. 28, the group will host a rally in Boston Common to urge Reed to reinstate National Grid's contract with Cape Wind. To date, more than 1,500 have signed the petition. According to the group, Mothers Out Front, Massachusetts Climate Action Network and Healthlink have joined the effort as official partners.
‘Reed has been a long-term and enthusiastic supporter of offshore wind,’ says Craig Altemose, executive director of Better Future Project. ‘Now, Cape Wind's fate lies in her hands. By reinstating National Grid's contract with Cape Wind, she can save the nation's first offshore wind farm, help create thousands of jobs and move toward securing Massachusetts' clean energy future.’
‘Unlike Tom May, CEO of Northeast Utilities – who has opposed Cape Wind since the beginning – Marcy Reed is on the record calling for more offshore wind in Massachusetts. This is her chance to act on her convictions, with support from people across Massachusetts and beyond,’ says James Razsa, director of campaigns at Better Future Project.
The activist organizations maintain that saving Cape Wind – as opposed to building new gas pipelines and facilities – is the best option.
‘Gas is not the solution to our energy problems: gas drilling wells, pipelines and plants pose unacceptable health and safety risks to surrounding neighborhoods and communities, and extracting, transporting and burning gas contributes to climate change, fueling mega-storms like last week's blizzard,’ Altemose says. ‘We need to invest in a clean energy future, and the best way to start is by building Cape Wind.’