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A Maryland offshore wind farm can be a success

The Feb. 5 front-page article “Despite likely O’Malley win, wind project might not fly” underestimated the prospects for developing Maryland’s most abundant clean-energy resource.

Gov. Martin O’Malley’s 2013 offshore wind bill represents Maryland’s piece of the puzzle for launching one of our region’s best available solutions to the global climate crisis. The bill is projected to lead to a 200-megawatt wind farm off Maryland’s coast, nearly doubling the state’s current supply of power from the wind and sun and providing about 1 percent of its electric needs. That’s enough power to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of taking nearly 80,000 cars off the road. This is just the beginning. Studies have found that wind power off our state’s coast could provide two-thirds of our current electric load.

Maryland cannot afford to wait. In 2012, we suffered the hottest year on record, with devastating drought and unrecognizable storms. The winds off our coast represent our largest-scale clean energy answer for mitigating the intensifying wrath of global warming. This year, the Maryland General Assembly must put our state at the forefront of the burgeoning offshore wind industry.

Tom Carlson, Takoma Park

The writer is the Maryland campaign director for the Chesapeake Climate Action Network.

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