Virginia, Maryland, and North Carolina announce new regional partnership in massive clean offshore wind development

"Coming together regionally also makes the Mid-Atlantic that much more attractive to offshore wind manufacturers to locate here, which in turn creates tens of thousands of jobs in each of our respective states.”

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Governors from the three states committed to developing new offshore wind energy. The partnership between Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina will help promote clean energy, while creating thousands of clean energy jobs.

The Southeast and Mid-Atlantic Regional Transformative Partnership for Offshore Wind Energy Resources (SMART-POWER) partnership seeks to “attract and promote massive clean offshore wind development” all while becoming the economic hub for clean energy, a press release stated.

“This partnership between Mid-Atlantic States is only the start of unlocking the region’s massive potential for clean affordable offshore wind energy,” David Smedick, Sierra Club Beyond Coal Campaign Representative, said in a news release.

The partnership will develop a leadership team with representatives from each state, who will work to expand and promote wind energy in Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina.

“Coming together regionally also makes the Mid-Atlantic that much more attractive to offshore wind manufacturers to locate here, which in turn creates tens of thousands of jobs in each of our respective states,” Eileen Woll, Offshore Energy Program Director with the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter, said.

According to the U.S. Energy Department, the partnership is estimated to garner “$57 billion in investments, support over 86,000 jobs, and provide up to $25 billion in economic output by 2030.” The Mid-Atlantic partnership already committed 6.8 gigawatts to procurement, with an additional 20.2 gigawatts of offshore wind projects are in the making across the United States.

“It makes sense therefore that the Mid-Atlantic states come together to coordinate development of this exciting new American clean energy frontier industry,” Woll said. “Virginia has set bold goals of attaining 100 percent clean energy by 2050 and offshore wind can and must make up a lion share of that 100 percent mix.”

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