A federal judge has dismissed the latest lawsuit against Cape Wind, but opponents say they are not giving up on their fight to stop the long-delayed offshore wind farm.
“We are still full steam ahead,” said Audra Parker, president and CEO of the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound. “We are still fully committed to defeating Cape Wind.”
A federal judge late Friday dismissed the suit brought by the Alliance and the town of Barnstable that challenged the power purchase agreement between Cape Wind and Nstar, and its approval by the state. U.S. District Judge Richard Stearns said the federal court has no jurisdiction because individuals are barred from suing states in federal court.
Cape Wind said in a statement that the decision will allow it to move forward with the project.
“This important legal victory provides further momentum for Cape Wind to secure project financing and produce the energy, economic and environmental benefits to the region and the United States by launching a domestic offshore wind industry,” said Cape Wind president Jim Gordon.
But opponents vowed to continue their more than 10 year fight to derail the planned wind turbines off the coast of Nantucket.
“This is far from over,” said Charlie McLaughlin, assistant town attorney for Barnstable.
Parker said the Alliance will appeal.
“We believe we have a strong case both on the merits and the process,” she said. “Cape Wind is still not off the ground. It is far from a done deal.”
The Alliance has several other legal battles pending. In March, another judge upheld the Interior Department’s approval of Cape Wind’s turbines, but said two federal agencies must revisit studies on the impact on migrating birds and right whales.
Cape Wind remains in the financing stage, which it plans to complete in the second half of 2014. Construction will begin soon after the project is financed, the company said.
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