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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pro Offshore Wind Power Petition Surpasses 10,000 Names As Maryland General Assembly Meets

Petition comes on heels of poll last week showing big support for offshore wind power statewide; Constituents to deliver thousands of signatures to key legislators Tuesday

ANNAPOLIS— Environmental, labor, faith, and women’s groups announced Tuesday that their statewide petition drive for offshore wind power has surpassed 10,000 signatures. The news comes one week after a new poll showed 62 percent of Marylanders support offshore wind power development in the state and are willing to pay slightly more on their utility bills to make it happen.

Activists will deliver thousands of petition signatures to key legislators Tuesday as Senate and House committees continue to study the wind power issue. The offshore wind poll was conducted by Maryland firm Gonzales Research and Marketing Strategies.

“With thousands more petition signatures delivered and a poll showing super-majority support, it is more clear than ever that Marylanders want offshore wind now,” said Mike Tidwell, Director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network.

The Senate Finance Committee will meet this Thursday at 2:00 pm to continue their study of offshore wind policy, while the House Economic Matters Committee will meet to study the issue again in November.  This week’s session will focus on different policy approaches for supporting offshore wind development, including setting up a process for the Public Service Commission to consider long-term contracts for the resource and creating a renewable energy carve out for offshore wind energy.

As legislators discuss the issue in Annapolis, offshore wind advocates and their allies are organizing half a dozen town hall meetings throughout the state to further demonstrate Marylanders’ support. The first will take place on Thursday, November 3rd at 6pm at the Mid County Community Recreation Center in Silver Spring.

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