Virginia is the first state in the country to secure a wind energy research lease to build and operate turbines in federal waters, Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced Tuesday.
The agreement with the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) will enable Dominion Virginia Power to move forward with its plans to erect a pair of 6-megawatt test turbines on the Outer Continental Shelf, about 24 nautical miles east of the Virginia Beach shoreline.
The turbines are intended as a demonstration project that, if successful, could mean Dominion will develop an adjacent 113,000-acre Wind Energy Area to generate enough electricity to power 700,000 homes.
"The data collected...