On April 19, 2011, Ken Salazar, the Secretary for the U.S. Department of Interior (“Interior”) announced that the Cape Wind Energy Project’s Construction and Operation Plan (“COP”) received approval from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (“BOEMRE”).  The COP was the final federal regulatory approval needed to begin construction on the first offshore wind project in the United States.

The Cape Wind Energy Project will be 130 3.6+ MW generator turbines placed offshore in a grid pattern in the Nantucket Sound, Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket Island.  In October 2010, Salazar fist signed the lease for the Cape Wind Energy Project (see October 8, 2010 edition of the WER), and as part of preparing the COP, an Environmental Assessment (“EA”) was conducted pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act.  BOEMRE analyzed the EA and determined that there were no additional environmental impacts in addition to those identified in a 2009 Final Environmental Impact Statement. 

 A link to the Interior’s press release is available here.