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US Department Of The Interior Approves New York City Offshore Wind Project, Commercial Fishermen Oppose

First Posted: Jun 10, 2016 06:00 AM EDT
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The Offshore Wind Project in New York City is given a go signal by the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) last week. On the other hand, the commercial fishermen disagree in building windmills on pylons within approximately 329 square kilometers of the New York Bight.

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said that the department took a major step in broadening the nation's energy portfolio, channeling power near population centers on the East Coast. The Offshore Wind Project is a public-private collaboration by Con Edison, Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) and New York Power Authority (NYPA).

The main goal of this project is to supply the Long Island and New York City with clean and renewable energy. This is also to reduce the use of fossil fuels for electricity production. The project could generate at least 70 megawatts of energy yearly. This is sufficient to fuel a quarter of a million houses. According to Interior Department, the plan brings to 11 the number of states either partaking or interested the offshore wind energy program of the agency's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM).

Nancy Sopko, advocacy and federal legislative affairs manager for the American Wind Energy Association stated that the offshore wind turbines can enable the America's most overcrowded city to source big amounts of energy close to home while refining local air quality. Meanwhile, Anthony Fiore, the policy advisor for the New York City mayor's Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability also said that the offshore wind energy would help the city reach its goal of lessening greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050, according to EOS.

On the other hand, the fishing industry has urged for BOEM to relocate the project. They reasoned that the wind development might constraint valuable scallop habitat and initiate navigational hazards for fishing boats. They added that the construction of the project could also harm the scallop fishery.

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