Reviews very positive on Vineyard Wind 1
‘It’s a mammoth, mammoth human undertaking,’ senator says
EVERY LAWMAKER on a boat trip last week to see Vineyard Wind 1 is supporting the development of offshore wind, but actually seeing the nation’s first commercial-scale wind farm taking shape still made a big impression.
“It’s absolutely amazing and stunning to see what I’ve been thinking about on paper and in policy, to actually see it come to life,” said the House’s top offshore wind supporter, Rep. Jeffrey Roy of Franklin.
His Senate counterpart, Sen. Michael Barrett of Lexington, was equally impressed. “The sheer scale of it blows you away. This makes the Big Dig look like a trench,” Barrett said. “It’s an extraordinary trip to see how each of these [turbines] are going to be positioned. There are going to be 62 of these, each one a mile apart from one another. The sheer mass of that configuration is hard to conjure with. It’s a mammoth, mammoth human undertaking. The scale of it is almost too much to encompass in your head.”
The Codcast took to the sea along with state lawmakers, some municipal officials, and members of environmental groups. The group found six foundations in the ocean floor, their tops just visible above the ocean’s surface. There was also an electrical substation, where the electricity from the wind farm will be gathered and fed into the undersea cable delivering power to Barnstable and from there to the regional power grid.
“It is bigger than the Statue of Liberty, the Eiffel Tower, and it’s very close to the Empire State Building,” he said.
Each turbine is capable of generating 13 megawatts of power and the entire wind farm will have a total capacity of 806 megawatts. Oytan said the actual capacity will be half of that, or about 400 megawatts, given that the wind doesn’t always blow and it doesn’t always blow with maximum strength.
Vineyard Wind 1 should also be viewed as a preview of coming attractions. It’s the first of several wind farms planned for the area. If they are all built, wind turbines will stretch for as far as the eye can see.Looking out at the initial construction outcroppings of Vineyard Wind 1, Roy is moved. “I’ve seen wind farms in Denmark, and so I’m used to seeing what I’m seeing out here. But to see it on the shores of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is just really touching my heart. This is something we thought about for years, this is something we’ve been planning for, and it’s a dream come true to see it here, live,” he said.
Roy says he is eager to see the whole vision of offshore wind come to fruition. “I always like to use the analogy of the Hoover Dam as to what government does really well in taking these projects that no one company or individual can do and bringing states together and bringing companies together in a public private partnership to build something that makes a difference in the world. And this to me is our generation’s Hoover Dam, which we’re looking at today,” he said.