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October 5, 2020

Maine awarded $2.2M for offshore wind roadmap

Image of offshore wind turbine that's partly under water File image / Courtesy, University of Maine The U.S. Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration has awarded a $2.17 million grant to the Governor’s Energy Office in August to develop a roadmap for establishing an offshore wind power industry.

The federal government awarded a $2.17 million grant to Maine to develop a roadmap for establishing an offshore wind power industry.

The grant, to the Governor's Energy Office in Augusta, is being made by the Economic Development Administration within the U.S. Department of Commerce. The money will be matched with $267,624 in state funds and $112,457 in local funds.

“Unleashing American innovation is critical to our global competitiveness,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross in a news release. “This project will allow Maine to capitalize on its technical leadership in the wind power sector to diversify and grow the state’s economy and make it more resilient.”

The project is funded under a law in which Congress appropriated $600 million to the Economic Development Administration in additional funds for disaster relief and recovery as a result of natural disasters in 2017, including three hurricanes, under the Stafford Act.

The agency is charged with leading the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. The EDA invests in economically distressed communities to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth. 

U.S. Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, welcomed news of the grant in comments shared via email.

"As I’ve watched the breakthroughs of Maine innovators in the offshore wind sector, I’ve witnessed our capacity to harness immense opportunities for new jobs, and for a new, diversified energy source — we just needed to make the right investments," he told Mainebiz. "This new initiative will do just that.

"I’m proud to have worked with the Governor's team and the EDA to make this partnership a reality, and will continue advocating for Maine’s leadership in clean energy alternatives however I can."

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