Virginia regulators green light offshore wind pilot project

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia state regulators have begrudgingly approved a proposed offshore wind pilot program they have said is expensive, risky and unneeded to provide reliable electricity.

The State Corporation Commission issued a ruling Friday allowing Dominion Energy to proceed with building two wind turbines about 27 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach. The commission said the proposal would not be considered “prudent” under any normal definition of the word, but a new law Dominion helped write required the commission to approve it.

Commissioners noted that Dominion’s customers will bear “essentially all the risk” if the estimated $300 million project has cost overruns or has performance issues.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam supported the law and wants to make Virginia an East Coast hub for offshore wind energy.

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