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Off-shore wind farm moves ahead; Critics still objecting

As waves crashed ashore on this Rhode Island beach there was more turbulence blowing.

Construction of five wind turbines – much like this one in North Kingstown – is set for three miles off Block Island., from the company “Deepwater Wind.” This comes the same week the similar “Cape Wind” farm based in New Bedford, failed to get it’s financing.

Could the Rhode Island wind farm, face similar trouble?

Mark Curtis Q: “Some of the Commissioners did ask questions about final financing today. Can you put those concerns to rest?

“Yeah, of course. Our financing is secure. We’re ready to build and we actually are in construction, so we are full steam ahead, and this summer the activity begins,” said Jeff Grybowski, CEO of Deepwater Wind.

Deepwater Wind and National Grid also told the Public Utilities Commission, all environmental issues have been addressed.

ABC6 Chief Political Reporter Mark Curtis said, “This wind farm is on the fast track. Construction is already underway and it should be generating power off of Block Island, by the fall of 2016.

But critics are angry the turbine assembly is not being done at Quonset Point; it’s being done elsewhere.

“Anywhere from New Orleans to Europe, so. That was the promise of project – bring jobs to Rhode Island and I don’t see it,” said State Rep. Bob Craven, (D) North Kingstown.

Others say the project will discourage tourism, with five, 6oo-foot turbine towers.

“I think it’s going to completely destroy what it’s like to be on Block Island. There will be people on the mainland who will be able to see it. It’s an industrial plant,” said Block Island resident Maggie Delia.

Despite critics, Deepwater Wind says it’s full speed ahead.