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Environment

NC, Virginia, Maryland Reach Offshore Wind Agreement

A bill seeks to protect air space for military exercises by prohibiting wind farms.
Paulo Valdivieso
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Flickr Creative Commons

North Carolina has teamed up with Virginia and Maryland for more clout in the emerging offshore wind industry.

The three states announced an agreement on Thursday to advance offshore wind development. They also have agreed to form a team with representatives from each jurisdiction that will work to streamline the development of regional offshore wind resources

They’ll work together to encourage the development of offshore projects and other aspects of the industry, such as manufacturing the turbines, blades and other equipment. Katharine Kollins heads the industry group Southeastern Wind Coalition.

"And these are risky projects. They are projects that take a lot of time, a lot of capital, and a lot of political will." Kollins said. "And so to have everything moving in the same direction, is going to make a big difference in how quickly and how successfully we're able to bring this industry to the US."

The partnership also will aim to reduce project costs through supply chain development and share information and best practices.

"This bipartisan agreement with neighboring states allows us to leverage our combined economic power and ideas to achieve cost effective success," North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said in a statement announcing the agreement.

Virginia already has an offshore pilot project, and a company that’s built a large land-based wind farm near Elizabeth City has a leased a site off North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

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