New England offshore wind planning offers lessons for Great Lakes

When Scandia, a Norwegian wind company, announced its plans to install 200 turbines in Lake Michigan four miles from the tourist town of Ludington, Michigan, in 2009, they likely didn’t anticipate the controversy that would erupt. A similar brouhaha unfolded over the past decade in Nantucket Sound, off the southern coast of Cape Cod, over a proposed 468 MW wind farm known as Cape Wind. Residents of the area spent nine years fighting the project before the Interior Department approved it in 2010. Conservationists have their own set of what-ifs, as do commercial fishers.  A systematic mapping approach could help them meet their goals as well, said Sally McGee, who directs the Northeast Marine Program for the Nature Conservancy and serves on the New England Fishery Management Council, the major regional planning body for the fishing industry. Read more here