Cape Wind

Cape Wind Lease Area
Cape Wind Lease Area 

In December 2017, Cape Wind Associates, LLC (CWA) announced it would relinquish its lease. The Lease was relinquished on May 10, 2018.

The Cape Wind Energy Project was proposed by Cape Wind Associates, LLC (CWA) in November 2001. Prior to BOEM’s involvement, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers assumed the lead Federal regulatory role under the River and Harbors Act, and issued a draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in November 2004. Following the Energy Policy Act of 2005, the former Minerals Management Service (MMS) assumed lead Federal responsibility for all offshore wind power projects in Federal waters under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act.

The proposed project was to consist of up to 130 Siemens 3.6 megawatt (MW) wind turbine generators (model #SWT-3.6-107) mounted on steel monopole foundations. The project was expected to have a total nameplate capacity of 468 MW, and with an average anticipated output of 174 MW.

Project Milestones

  • In November 2001, CWA submitted an application to the Army Corps of Engineers for the construction of a wind power facility.
  • In August 2002, the Army Corps issued a permit to CWA to construct a meteorological tower for measuring wind speeds and gathering data. The tower was constructed in 2002 and still operates today.
  • In November 2004, the Army Corps issued a draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the construction of a wind power facility.
  • The Energy Policy Act of 2005 gave lead Federal regulatory authority to the Department of the Interior. The authority was delegated from the Department to the former MMS, and CWA applied for a commercial lease from the bureau on September 14, 2005.
  • On January 18, 2008, the Cape Wind draft EIS was published, and the final EIS was published on January 21, 2009.
  • In December 2009, the EPA Clean Air Act General Conformity Determination was issued.
  • On January 4, 2010, the Keeper of the National Register of Historic Places issued a determination that Nantucket Sound was eligible for listing as a traditional cultural property and an historic and archaeological property. On January 13, 2010, BOEM published a revised Documentation of Section 106 Finding of Adverse Effect.
  • On March 2, 2010, Secretary of the Interior terminated Section 106 consultations after it became apparent that agreement among consulting parties could not be achieved.
  • On April 28, 2010, the Department of the Interior issued the Record of Decision approving issuance of a commercial wind lease for the project.
  • On October 6, 2010, CWA signed the first commercial offshore renewable energy lease in the United States. The lease became effective on November 1, 2010.
  • On October 29, 2010, Cape Wind submitted a COP. Cape Wind submitted an updated COP on February 4, 2011. On April 18, 2011, BOEM issued the Record of Decision approving the COP.
  • On November 20, 2012, BOEM approved Cape Wind’s Avian and Bat Monitoring Plan (ABMP).
  • On May 20, 2014, CWA submitted its Facility Design Report (FDR) and Fabrication and Installation Report (FIR).
  • On July 25, 2014, CWA submitted revisions to the approved COP.
  • On September 9, 2014, BOEM approved CWA’s revisions to the COP and determined it has no objections to the FDR and FIR.
  • On February 26, 2015, CWA submitted a request for a two-year suspension of the operations term of its commercial lease.
  • On July 24, 2015 BOEM approved the two-year suspension and issued a suspension order pursuant to 30 CFR 585.418. The lease suspension expired on July 24, 2017.
  • On June 22, 2017, CWA submitted a request for an additional two-year suspension of the operations term of its commercial lease and a suspension of its payment obligations during the suspension.
  • In September 2017, BOEM announced the availability of a Record of Decision (ROD) for the Cape Wind Energy Project Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS).
  • In December 2017, Cape Wind Associates, LLC (CWA) announced it would relinquish its lease.

  Additional Information