Vineyard Wind is well underway in developing the nation's first utility-scale offshore wind energy project over 15 miles off the coast of Massachusetts. The project will generate clean, renewable, cost-competitive energy for over 400,000 homes and businesses across the Commonwealth, while reducing carbon emissions by over 1.6 million tons per year.
New England is shifting to clean, competitively-priced energy, and Massachusetts state law seeks to have 3,200 MW of offshore wind providing electricity to the Commonwealth by 2035, which could represent over 20% of electricity consumed in the state. Vineyard Wind is an important part of that goal, and will make a significant contribution to the Commonwealth’s aim of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, while growing our economy and enhancing energy security and reliability.
Vineyard Wind has leased a 160,000 acre area south of Martha's Vineyard, and 15 miles from the nearest shore. The location was determined through a multi-year, inter-governmental task force process, which carefully considered scientific data and public input. The offshore wind project will consist of an array of wind turbines, spaced at least eight-tenths of a mile apart, that are each capable of generating 9.5MW of power. Power from the turbines is collected by an offshore substation.
Submarine cables will be installed along a carefully designed route from the project site to a landing point on shore, buried up to six feet below the sea floor. The route has been designed after an extensive geological survey of the area to avoid as many sensitive areas as possible. The upland cables will be buried along proposed routes in Barnstable.
CONNECTION TO THE NEW ENGLAND GRID
From the onshore cable landing site, the route will extend to the grid connection point inland. The route will run underground primarily along public roads, but also includes segments within other previously disturbed corridors such as an existing utility right-of-way. After the initial installation, all maintenance work will be accessed via installed manholes.
CLEAN & COST-EFFICIENT
Offshore wind is both clean and cost effective. In Europe, offshore wind is now priced competitively with fossil fuels such as coal and even natural gas. Vineyard Wind will offer $3.7 billion in energy related cost savings over the life of the project while eliminating 1.68 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually - the equivalent of taking 325,000 cars off the road.
THOUSANDS OF NEW JOBS
The development of 1,600 MW of offshore wind energy will kickstart a new industry in Southeastern Massachusetts. Over 3,600 local full time equivalent jobs over the life of the project, starting with in-state construction in 2019.
ENERGY FOR MORE THAN 400,000 HOMES
Vineyard Wind’s turbines, totaling up to 800 MW, are expected to reliably produce the amount of energy used by over 400,000 Massachusetts homes. Offshore wind delivers much of its power in the winter, when Massachusetts needs the most energy for both heat and electricity generation.
A NEW INDUSTRY FOR MASSACHUSETTS
Vineyard Wind has pledged a long-term economic development initiative including $15 million in investments to accelerate the growth of the offshore wind industry in Massachusetts
GREENHOUSE GAS REDUCTIONS
Vineyard Wind will reduce the Commonwealth’s carbon dioxide emissions by over 1.6 million metric tons annually, the equivalent of taking 325,000 cars off the road
Vineyard Wind will result in well over $1.4 billion in energy-related cost savings during the first 20 years of the project
Vineyard Wind will provide 800MW of power directly to Cape Cod, enhancing reliability on the edge of New England’s transmission system
OFFSHORE WIND ACCELERATOR
The Vineyard Wind Project presents a historic opportunity to ignite the Massachusetts supply chain and workforce. Vineyard Wind is committing $15 million in three initiatives that will build a skilled offshore wind workforce centered in southeastern Massachusetts, attract additional investment in infrastructure and supply chain development, and advance technologies that will allow for greater expansion of offshore wind, while continuing to protect marine mammals. Learn more here.
Vineyard Wind is committed to ensuring the protection of marine habitats and minimizing any impacts to the fishing industry. Federal and state agencies have extensively studied the Vineyard Wind area examining the presence of endangered whale, turtle and bird species, as well as fisheries and important seafloor habitats, since 2011. These studies helped guide the appropriate design of the Vineyard Wind project.
Vineyard Wind is committed to having an ongoing positive relationship with Massachusetts’s largest offshore industry: fishing. They have a strong voice in this project and we listen. At the start of the development process in 2010, we reached out to fishermen to ensure that fishing concerns could be incorporated early into the project plans.
Vineyard Wind engaged the first offshore wind fisheries representative in the United States. The fisheries representative’s role is to meet with fishermen where they work and live, and report back to the project their concerns and ideas. This way, fishermen can participate in this process, even while working long hours offshore.
Site selected through an intergovernmental stakeholder process
Located over 15 miles from the nearest shore in an area that allows for minimal environmental and human impact
Scientific studies of the nearby ocean and seafloor were conducted over several years, ensuring that the best information was used in making project siting decisions
Powerful and reliable wind speeds and ideal site conditions to support wind turbine foundations
Offshore studies and technical design underway since 2011
STRONG GRID CONNECTION
Proposed connection to onshore locations reduces seafloor disruption and ensures that environmental impacts are minimal and temporary
Location offers a reliable grid connection without the need for changes to the existing grid system
ON TRACK TO START ONSHORE CONSTRUCTION IN 2019
Vineyard Wind is the first of several competing projects to have already initiated the full permitting review process, putting the project on track to start in-state construction in 2019.
The project requires over 25 federal, state, and local permits and authorizations: the lead federal agency is the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and the main state agency is the Energy Facilities Siting Board. Applications were made to both in December 2017.
+ RECENTLY ADDED DOCUMENTS
+ GENERAL PROJECT INFORMATION
+ GENERAL PROJECT AREA INFORMATION
+ STATE PERMITTING
Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA)
83C Bid Commitments
+ FEDERAL PERMITTING
For all documents related to federal permitting, please visit BOEM’s website here.
Check this page for the next steps in the Vineyard Wind permitting process, and the latest information about public agency meetings and opportunities for public comment. For any questions regarding the permitting process, please email Nate at email@example.com.
Many of these documents are available to the public in print form, please click here for a listing of locations.
The Vineyard Wind project is subject to permitting, review, and consultations with nearly 30 different agencies at the federal, state, local, tribal, and regional levels.
The lead federal permitting agency is the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM). Visit BOEM’s webpage for the Vineyard Wind project for further information, and current opportunities to submit comment and public meeting schedule. The detailed project proposal is contained in the Construction and Operations Plan (COP), which is available on this BOEM webpage.
The Vineyard Wind Connector, the transmission cables bringing the clean energy from the turbine area 15 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard to the New England grid connection point in Barnstable, is subject to approval by the Massachusetts Energy Facilities Siting Board. In addition, the project is subject to review under the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act.
Vineyard Wind encourages active participation in the permitting process! Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or concerns about the permitting process and how you can participate and be heard.
In addition to the formal permitting process, Vineyard Wind staff is continuously meeting with fishermen, local residents and other stakeholders. Visit our community connections page to connect with the right project staff person about any questions or concerns you might have.
+ UPCOMING PUBLIC AGENCY MEETINGS AND PUBLIC COMMENT
There will be multiple public agency meetings and opportunity to submit public comment. This section shows current information and will be updated throughout the permitting process.
The United States’ Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has issued a Notice of Availability (NOA) for Vineyard Wind’s Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). The DEIS was prepared by BOEM as part of the agency’s review of Vineyard Wind’s proposed 800-megawatt (MW) wind farm to be constructed in federal waters south of Martha’s Vineyard and approximately 34 miles south of the Cape Cod mainland.
The purpose of the review is to ensure the technical accuracy of all aspects of the document and offer an opportunity for the public to comment. You can learn more about BOEM’s Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) Process here.
There is a 45 day public comment period on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the project. The public comment period ends January 22, 2019. The public may either comment to in writing or by making oral comments at one of the public meetings. Additional information on Vineyard Wind’s DEIS can be found here.
On September 5, 2018, Vineyard Wind submitted the project’s Vineyard Wind’s proposal is currently undergoing extensive reviews by the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act Office and the Energy Facilities Siting Board. More information on these permit applications and processes can be found in our Document Room. Future releases or opportunity for public input will be posted here.
Please visit here. for information on the Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR).
CAPE COD COMMISSION
The Cape Cod Commission held a public hearing on Tuesday, April 9, 2019. The comment period has closed.
The Project application, plans and relevant documents may be viewed at the Cape Cod Commission offices located at 3225 Main Street, Route 6A, Barnstable, MA 02630 between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. For further information or to schedule a viewing appointment, please contact the Commission office at (508) 362-3828.
+ SUBMIT COMMENTS NOW
The comment period for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) has been completed. Thank you to everyone who submitted comments.
The comment period for the Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR) has been completed. Thank you to everyone who submitted comments.