Vineyard Wind starts laying undersea cable

Officials say work significant milestone for project

VINEYARD WIND said on Tuesday that it has begun laying the undersea cable that will carry electricity from its yet-to-be built wind farm off of Martha’s Vineyard to landfall in Barnstable on Cape Cod.

The cable work is being done by the Prysmian Group using cable manufactured in the United Kingdom. Prysmian is also planning to build a cable manufacturing facility at Brayton Point in Somerset to supply cable for future wind farms off the coast.

Klaus Moeller, the CEO of Vineyard Wind, said he regarded the cable work as a significant milestone for the project, which is scheduled to start producing some electricity in late 2023 and complete the 400-megawatt first phase of the project by January 2024.

“For a project that has achieved many firsts, the beginning of offshore cable installation is perhaps the most significant we have achieved so far,” Moeller said in a statement.

The progress with Vineyard Wind comes as Commonwealth Wind and Mayflower Wind, two other wind farms in the planning stages, are facing financial uncertainty amid rising inflation and supply chain issues. Both companies are seeking to renegotiate their contracts with Massachusetts utilities.

Vineyard Wind, the nation’s first industrial scale wind farm, appears to have avoided a good chunk of those problems by locking in many of its contracts before the world economy became destabilized.