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Somerset Wind Project Faces Uncertainty After MD Senate Vote


With the overwhelming Senate vote to delay the $200 million wind project in Somerset County state Senator Jim Mathias said that this vote would be a $45 million loss for local residents.

Developers had hoped to move forward with construction of the Great Bay Wind Energy projection by next summer.

But the measure would delay that for another 15 months while a study is conducted to examine the impact of the wind turbines the U.S. Naval Air Station on the Patuxent River.

Paul Harris, a development manager with the Pioneer Green Energy, issued a statement expressing disappointment with the vote that came despite an agreement with the navy to work with them so that the turbines would affect the radar at the base.

WBOC reports that Harris said if the moratorium goes into effect it would make his company’s involvement in the project more difficult missing out on some crucial tax benefits and some interconnection deadlines.

But supporters of the delay brought in House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer from southern Maryland where the naval base is located as well as a letter from the state’s two senators on their behalf.

Governor Martin O’Malley has said he opposes the law as it is currently written.


Don Rush is the News Director at Delmarva Public Media. An award-winning journalist, Don reports major local issues of the day, from sea level rise, to urban development, to the changing demographics of Delmarva.