What do you do when local opposition to an offshore wind farm project dries up, when the NIMBY crowd runs out of steam, when the federal government gives the green light and extends every permit and courtesy the law will allow, when the technology is tested and proven, and there’s nothing left to do but build it? Well, then you go looking for money -- lots of it. After more than a decade of preparation, the Massachusetts wind energy company Cape Wind has done just that -- and the results are looking promising.
A $2 billion agreement with Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ penned last week catapults Cape Wind to a commanding lead in the race to be the first offshore wind project in the U.S. When complete, 130 turbines in Nantucket Sound will generate 468 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 100,000 to 200,000 households in the Cape Cod region, depending on the season. If the company can get construction started this year, Cape Wind’s clean power could begin turning on lights from Buzzards Bay to Provincetown by 2015.