Two Delaware Republicans are working on a resolution to protect the state’s beach economy and environment.
Senate Republican Leader Gerald Hocker, R-Ocean View, and Rep. Ron Gray, R-Selbyville, announced legislation Friday that would require irrevocable pre-construction decommissioning bonds be posted.
Their resolution would also mandate that wind farm developers commit to recycling or disposing of decommissioned turbine components in Maryland, and Aircraft Detection Lighting Systems be deployed for any offshore wind project with power transmission lines coming ashore in Delaware’s Coastal Zone as a condition of permit approval.
“The Delaware Tourism Bureau reports that Sussex County tourism contributed $2.7 billion to the state’s economy in 2021,” Hocker said in a statement. “Experts estimate that offshore wind turbines could severely harm Delaware’s tourist industry resulting in $65 million in lost taxes, eliminate over 5,000 jobs, and deal a huge hit to coastal small businesses by losing upwards of $640 million in tourist spending.”
If any of the individual conditions of the resolution are not met, a permit would be automatically nullified.
“The permitting process is the only way Delaware can ensure wind projects approved by other states, such as Maryland, include maximum protection for our state’s beach communities,” Gray said in a statement. “We must do all we can to protect our coastal economy and environment.”
The lawmakers’ resolution follows Gov. John Carney’s announcement that negotiations will begin between US Wind and Delaware pertaining to two planned offshore wind projects.
Raised in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, Jarek earned a B.A. in journalism and a B.A. in political science from Temple University in 2021. After running CNN’s Michael Smerconish’s YouTube channel, Jarek became a reporter for the Bucks County Herald before joining Delaware LIVE News.
Jarek can be reached by email at [email protected] or by phone at (215) 450-9982. Follow him on Twitter @jarekrutz
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