Google-Backed Offshore-Wind Grid Gets Environmental Review

A $5 billion transmission line backed by Google Inc. and Marubeni Corp. that will distribute power from offshore wind farms planned for the Atlantic coast will proceed with a U.S. Interior Department environmental review.

“The first-of-its-kind Atlantic Wind Connection is an encouraging sign of significant industry interest in developing the infrastructure to support offshore wind development,” Deputy Secretary of Interior David J. Hayes said today in a conference call with journalists.

The line, which may transport as much as 7,000 megawatts, would take 10 years to build, according to an Interior Department statement. Atlantic Grid Holdings LLC’s proposed corridor will distribute power from offshore wind farms to be built along the shores between New Jersey and Virginia.

Investment in offshore wind will increase 44 percent to $8.5 billion this year, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. By 2020, about $55 billion will be spent on offshore wind farms, compared with $84.7 billion for onshore projects.

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