Another sign of the continuing downward spiral of the Cape Wind project popped up on social media this morning when Mark Rodgers announced via his Facebook page that he was resigning from his role as the company’s spokesman.
“After 13 years and 2 months, today I am saying goodbye to Cape Wind,” Rodgers wrote. “I’ve learned a tremendous amount and met a lot of great people.”
He added he was ready for new challenges and looking forward to the “next chapter” of his communications career, “whatever that turns out to be.”
In an email to the Times Rodgers wrote that he felt it was time to take on new challenges and that his departure “has nothing to do with the future of Cape Wind and it would be a mistake to interpret it as such.”
“As Jim Gordon recently told project supporters, reports of the project’s demise are greatly exaggerated,” he wrote.
Calls from the Times to Gordon, president of Cape Wind Associates and its parent company Energy Management Inc., were not immediately returned this afternoon.
The Facebook post follows a series of problems that seem to foreshadow the project’s demise, including the announcement earlier this month that a $4.5 million deal to lease the Marine Commerce Terminal in New Bedford for the staging and construction of the project on Nantucket Sound had been terminated.
In January, Eversource Energy, formerly known as NStar, and National Grid announced that Cape Wind had failed to meet some crucial contract deadlines and that deals to buy its power had been canceled.
The two utility companies planned to purchase about 77 percent of the energy generated.
Cape Wind could have paid $1.8 million to extend the agreements for an additional six months but instead claimed that the long history of litigation by abutters constituted a force majeure, which would allow the extension of the contracts without the payment.
The utilities disagreed. Without buyers for its energy it’s nearly impossible for Cape Wind to secure the $2.6 billion required for construction, according to renewable energy financing experts.
A few weeks after the utilities backed out of their contracts, Quonset Development Corporation confirmed it terminated a lease agreement with Cape Wind for a port facility in Kingstown, R.I.
An arrangement to buy a marina in Falmouth Harbor, announced in 2012, also appeared to be dead in the water in late January, with an employee there saying Cape Wind was “not in the mix anymore.”
Cape Wind was also suspended from participating in New England’s wholesale electricity markets by ISO New England.
Despite the series of setbacks Cape Wind officials, including Rodgers, had said they continued to hold out hope that the 130-turbine project could still be built.
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