CONCORD, Mass. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District on Sept. 4, 2014 approved the Deepwater Wind Block Island, LLC, and Deepwater Wind Block Island Transmission System, LLC, permit request to construct five wind turbine generators and do other work off the southeast coast of Block Island, Rhode Island.
Deepwater Wind Block Island, LLC plans to construct and maintain the Block Island Wind Farm (BIWF), a 30-megawatt offshore wind farm located in Rhode Island waters. The BIWF will consist of five 6-megawatt wind turbine generators (WTG), a submarine cable interconnecting the five WTGs, and a 34.5-kilovolt submarine transmission cable. Deepwater Wind Block Island Transmission System, LLC plans to construct the Block Island Transmission System (BITS), a 34.5-kilovolt alternating current bi-directional submarine transmission cable from Block Island to the Rhode Island mainland (approximately 25.1 miles).
There are two separate permits. One authorizes the 5 wind turbine generators and the cable linking them to Block Island. The other permit is for the cable from Block Island to Narragansett, Rhode Island, where it will hook up to the power grid.
The authorized work includes: 1) installation of 5 offshore wind turbine generators (WTGs) and associated foundations including the placement of 0.35 acre of permanent fill; 2) installation of 2 linear miles of submerged Inter-Array Cable including the placement of up to 0.1 acre of fill for cable armoring; 3) placement of up to 355 cubic yards of fill for armoring of the Inter-Array Cable at the base of the foundations; 4) installation of 6.2 linear miles of submerged Export Cable including the placement of up to 0.3 acre of fill for cable armoring; 5) Export Cable aerial crossing of approximately 45 linear feet over Trims Pond in the town of New Shoreham (Block Island); and 6) a temporary trench excavated between mean low water and mean high water for the Export Cable landfall at Crescent Beach on Block Island with a temporary disturbance area of approximately 0.01 acre.
The Corps issued a public notice on Oct. 2, 2012 seeking public comment on the proposed Block Island Wind Farm and the Block Island Transmission System. The application for the federal permit was filed with the Corps in compliance with Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act, which provides for federal regulation of any work in, or affecting navigable waters of the United States; and with Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, which regulates the discharge or fill of material in U.S. waters, including wetlands.
The BIWF and BITS were subject to joint review under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
The Corps public notice, with more detailed information, can be viewed at http://www.nae.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/PublicNotices.aspx. The Corps permit and Environmental Assessment can be viewed at http://www.nae.usace.army.mil/Missions/ProjectsTopics.aspx under “Rhode Island.”
For additional information on these permit actions (file # NAE-2009-789 and file # NAE 2012-2724) contact Regulatory Permit Project Manager Michael Elliott by email at: email@example.com.