350 New Hampshire

Offshore Wind

Offshore Wind is Coming to New Hampshire!

Overview

How we won the 350NH offshore wind campaign

To start the process of developing offshore wind energy, the Governor has to request a joint task force from the federal government. 350NH organized community support, connected with elected officials and delivered hundreds of petitions in 2016, but Maggie Hassan failed to act before leaving the Governor’s office.

With Sununu at the State House, we doubled down our efforts and passed warrant articles in more than 20 towns across the state calling for action. In 2019, we caught Sununu on NHPR’s “the Exchange” and got a verbal commitment to request the offshore wind task force. We followed up with public pressure and forced Sununu to keep his word. 

The official process began in 2020 with the first meeting of the federal and state joint task force on offshore wind. Offshore wind energy will create thousands of jobs and save NH ratepayers millions of dollars.

The 411 on NH's Offshore Wind

Why Offshore Wind?

Burning fossil fuels causes global climate change. Our coastal communities are flooding and extreme weather puts NH families and businesses at risk.  We can stop the climate crisis and create thousands of good paying jobs by building offshore wind energy and there is enough wind capacity off the coast of New Hampshire to generate 2,600 MW of energy (enough to supply the entire state). Wind energy construction and production is already underway in MA, RI and NY. It’s past time for NH to join in!

Economy

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NH spends billions of dollars buying dirty energy from out of state. We can keep jobs and dollars in our local economy by building offshore wind energy. Energy produced in our region will also allow ratepayers' energy bills to decrease!

Jobs

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Offshore Wind would bring jobs to New Hampshire in manufacturing, construction, operation and maintenance. It would also help NH rely more on local energy instead of imported energy.

Benefits of Offshore Wind

Climate and the Coast

Show More Climate change is destroying the Seacoast. Building offshore wind energy will help stop sea level rise and protect NH communities. Wind turbines will be far enough from the coast that they won't impact views. (And wouldn't you rather see a windmill than a smokestack?)

How Will We Build Offshore Wind?

In 2020, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Gulf of Maine Renewable Energy Task Force held their first meeting. The Task Force, composed of local and state elected officials and agency representatives, is a federal requirement recognized as the first step towards development. During the Task Force, members will discuss and finalize lease areas in federal waters off the New England coast, along with various other important topics related to offshore wind development including impacts on wildlife, fishing, ocean travel, and more.

Check out this article from Energy News about the campaign!

FAQ

The wind turbines will be miles offshore, barely visible on the horizon from coastal areas. Regardless, wind turbines are better to look at than polluting towers of coal plants.

Wind turbines are considered safe. The turbines are on floating platforms that are anchored to moorings. They are designed to withstand waves, severe storms, hurricane-force winds and even ice flows. They have lightning protection systems and are equipped with navigation and aviation warning lights. Unlike fracked gas pipelines, wind turbines won't cause massive explosions or leak methane into the air.

Commercial fishing crews are working with researchers at the new Block Island Wind Farm in Rhode Island to study the impacts on fishing.  Initial data suggests that there can be different species of fish located under different towers. Those in the fishing industry of RI are pleased to be working directly with researchers.

Offshore wind’s potential to reduce air and water pollution will make the natural world a cleaner, safer place for wildlife. After the construction period, the impact to animals is expected to be minimal and wildlife will adjust by swimming around the platforms. Construction guidelines have been developed to protect wildlife.

2015: We delivered over 1000 petitions to then-governor Hassan.  She failed to act before she left office so we shifted our attention to Governor Sununu.  

2016: on the campaign trail, we asked Chris Sununu if he would support offshore wind. He said if there was community support he would not oppose it.

2017: 350NH set out to educate the NH community about offshore wind, and to show definitive community support by passing warrant articles and resolutions around the state and working with businesses to send letters to the governor.  

March 2018: 350NH passed 21 resolutions and warrant articles in towns and cities around the state urging the governor to request a task force from the Bureau of Ocean and Energy Management to start the process of bringing offshore wind to New Hampshire.  

April 2018: On earth day over 100 people gathered at the capital to deliver letters from towns, businesses, and legislators to the governor.

December 2018: Governor Sununu officially requested the intergovernmental task force from the Federal Government which is the only way to move forward with building offshore wind on our coast.

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