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US Set to Deliver More Offshore Wind Energy in New Climate Bill

  • New rule reverses ban on wind energy leases for US territories
  • Act would also lift restrictions off Florida, Georgia coasts
Bloomberg business news
Democrats Send Inflation Reduction Act to House

The strong gusts blowing off the coasts of Puerto Rico, Guam and other US territories offer big green energy potential -- but for decades, a quirk in federal law meant renewable developers have been barred from tapping them.

Now, a tax and climate bill passed by the Senate on Sunday would lift that prohibition, opening coastal waters around the five US territories to offshore wind development and compelling the US Interior Department to pursue potential lease sales there. The shift, which the House must still must clear as part of the so-called Inflation Reduction Act, is being cast as a win for island territories that are heavily reliant on fossil fuels, including diesel, for electricity and are especially vulnerable to the effects of climate change.