Though it was meant to generate electricity, the Cape Wind project, a large offshore wind farm proposed for Nantucket Sound, has instead produced plenty of acrimony and legal ink. Well-connected residents, among others, have fought hard to keep the blades from spinning off the historic and picturesque Massachusetts shore. Now, however, it appears the project may have the wind at its back.
On 31 August, the Massachusetts Supreme Court granted all state and local permits to the Cape Wind farm, upholding a prior ruling by the state energy board in May 2009. This clears the way for construction to begin on 130 planned generators.
If built, the 468-megawatt power plant would be the largest wind generating installation in the U.S., providing power to about 220,000 households. While multiple offshore wind generators dot the coasts of Denmark, the Netherlands, and China, this would be the first in the U.S.