Labor and Environmental Advocates Voice Strong Support for Responsible Offshore Wind Industry in Maine

Environmental, labor groups advocate for clean energy development, responsible offshore wind industry in LD 1895 public hearing

(Augusta, ME) – Yesterday, a winning coalition of environmental and labor advocates voiced strong support for LD 1895, An Act Regarding the Procurement of Energy from Offshore Wind Resources. The legislation would enact top recommendations from Maine’s Offshore Wind Roadmap, including setting a procurement schedule in statute and establishing standards for wildlife, fisheries, and environmental monitoring and mitigation.

Highlights from yesterday’s public hearing include:

Eliza Donoghue, Director of Advocacy & Staff Attorney, Maine Audubon – “We support this bill because it is Maine’s opportunity to secure environmental standards and minimize impacts to wildlife and the marine environment while also securing the climate and clean energy benefits of offshore wind.”

Steve Clemmer, Director of Energy Research & Analysis, Union of Concerned Scientists – “The development of offshore wind energy in Maine represents a pivotal moment in the state’s—and our country’s—path to decarbonizing the power sector and implementing what science says is necessary to achieve key climate goals. The bill’s procurement would help stabilize energy costs, create high quality jobs, and solidify Maine’s leadership in developing floating offshore wind technologies. By adopting strong labor and environmental standards and important protections for local communities, tribes, and the fishing industry, the bill ensures that offshore wind will be developed responsibly and equitably in Maine.”

Read Steve’s blog about the bill here.

Amy Eshoo, Director, Maine Climate Action Now – “An obligation of energy procurement and development of this size is that no one is left behind. This bill sets high standards for diversity, equity and inclusion plans and meaningful consultation and stakeholder engagement. It incentivizes developers to prioritize economic and community benefits for low-income ratepayers, environmental justice populations, and federally recognized tribes in Maine. This bill lifts all Mainers.”

Dr. Habib Dagher, Executive Director, University of Maine Advanced Structures and Composites Center – “This bill has a unique opportunity to strengthen Maine’s engineering and technology leadership, and keep us as leaders in the floating wind space. We would appreciate the opportunity to work with you to do so.”