Opinion: Ocean City Continues to Spend Big to Oppose Wind Energy That Residents and Visitors Support

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I was pleased to see that Maryland’s Public Service Commission last week approved Ørsted’s use of 12 megawatt turbines for the Skipjack Wind Farm. That brings use one step closer to delivering clean energy to 35,000 homes in the region.

Not coincidentally, the Town of Ocean City just committed to pay Annapolis lobbyist Bruce Bereano $67,000 in taxpayer money to assist their efforts to stop offshore wind.

By this time next year, the town will have paid Mr. Bereano $267,000 over four years to lobby against offshore wind, according to State Ethics Commission filings. The town has yet to make public how much they have paid Prince George’s County lawyer Tim Maloney or viewshed expert Robert Sullivan in their efforts to stop these offshore wind projects. The town should make public how much taxpayer money they have spent on all outside consultants in an attempt to stop offshore wind.

There is more good news on offshore wind: the University of Delaware this summer released a study showing that 90% of beachgoers say wind turbines 20 miles offshore would not detract at all from their beach experience and another 10% said the turbines would actually improve their beach experience. The Skipjack Wind Farm would be at least 21 miles from shore.

Maryland wants offshore wind. It means good jobs for the Lower Shore, clean energy for our homes and businesses, and happy beachgoers.

— JARED SCHABLEIN

The writer, a resident of Pittsville, is chair of the Lower Shore Progressive Caucus.