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Offshore wind energy stirs debate in the Maryland House

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February 28, 2013

Maryland

By: Josh Altic

Annapolis, Maryland: Last week Governor Martin O'Malley proposed big incentives for the development of a large offshore wind facility estimated to provide 200 megawatts of power to Maryland residents. This Offshore Wind Energy Act of 2013 would also establish a framework of regulation, allowing additional projects to interconnect in Maryland.[1]

The Maryland House Economic Matters Committee Chairman, Dereck Davis said that he expects vigorous debate over this issue and several amendments to the proposed bill. According to reports, this new act would increase residential energy costs by about $1.50 per month. But Davis believes the price hike is out-weighed by the benefits of the measure and pointed out the job creation potential of this act saying, "The project being proposed would create almost 850 manufacturing and construction jobs for five years."[2]

This 2013 measure is essentially identical to a bill proposed last year, which was overwhelmingly supported in the House but got shut down by the Senate Finance Committee.[2]

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