Ohio to build offshore wind farm in Great Lakes

Cleveland, May 9, 2011 — Cleveland-based firm will begin construction on the 20-MW wind project in 2012, with the goal of spurring a turbine manufacturing industry in its home city

Ohio is set to build the first offshore wind farm in the Great Lakes, outpacing neighboring states and Canadian provinces whose own plans are facing long delays and possible outright bans.

Cleveland-based Lake Erie Energy Development Corp. expects to start construction on a 20-MW, $100 million pilot project by next year and aims to have the turbines operational by late 2013.

Freshwater Wind — a developer formed by Bechtel Development Co., Cavallo Great Lakes Ohio Wind and Great Lakes Wind Energy — could reach a power purchase agreement with utilities within a month. Energy from the project could supply around 16,000 homes with electricity.

LEEDCo hopes the demonstration can jump-start a freshwater wind industry across the eight states and two Canadian provinces surrounding the five lakes — all while steering wind turbine manufacturing to Ohio’s existing component and construction materials industries.

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