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Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia partnering on offshore wind energy development

Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia partnering on offshore wind energy development
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Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina are teaming up on an effort to kickstart wind energy and economic development off their shores.  

The new initiative provides a framework for the three states to "cooperatively promote, develop, and expand offshore wind energy and the accompanying industry supply chain and workforce," they said in a joint press release.

“Maryland has been leading the charge when it comes to real, bipartisan, common sense solutions and we are proud to continue setting an example for the nation of bold environmental leadership,” said Gov. Larry Hogan (R). “Joining this multi-state partnership to expand offshore wind development will further our strong record of supporting responsible energy projects that provide jobs, clean air benefits, and energy independence.”

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Planners estimate the project will provide up to 86,000 jobs, $57 billion in investments and up to $25 billion in economic output in the next decade. 

“Harnessing the power of offshore wind is key to meeting the urgency of the climate crisis and achieving 100 percent clean energy by 2050,” said Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D). “Virginia is well-positioned to scale up offshore wind development with a 12-megawatt wind demonstration project already built off our coast." 

The states said they will collectively form a leadership team tasked with identifying and streamlining the development of regional offshore wind resources. 

Wind energy projects pay up to $1.6 billion to state and local governments every year, according to the American Wind Energy Association, and wind energy accounts for more than 20 percent of the electricity in six states.