Trump Promises Action On Offshore Wind On Day One

( – Former President Donald Trump promised to sign an executive order that would end offshore wind turbines being used to generate electricity. The verbiage came during a Saturday, May 11 appearance in Wildwood, New Jersey, at a rally with over 100,000 attendees.

Trump suggested he would terminate the use of offshore wind turbines on “day one.” During his first term Trump had a neutral tone toward the technology, but the speech on Saturday suggests that Trump has been made aware that the technology is deadly for birds and certain types of whales and also fails to generate substantial amounts of energy when compared to nuclear or coal burning plants.

Trump’s authority to terminate the practice is questionable, although he could use an executive order to terminate any additional permitting while ordering a new review of the technology. President Joe Biden has similarly used his executive powers to limit additional applications for offshore oil leases shortly after he became president.

The technology is featured as an economic boon and environmentally-friendly though critics contend it isn’t worth the costs and fails to deliver sufficient energy to be useful. Developers tout $25 billion in associated economic activity from the construction of the turbines to specialty ships designed to install and service them.

Trump said that the technology was responsible for the deaths of whales. Ocean surveys using advanced sonar to map the ocean floor can disturb whales. It’s unclear if the construction results in whale deaths, although there has been an uptick in dead whales washing up along the eastern seaboard. Critics contend the deaths aren’t related while other scientists suggest regular traffic and changing the topography of the ocean could impact marine habitats in the areas they go up.

Paulina O’Connor is the executive director of a New Jersey-based wind cooperative. She highlighted good paying jobs, renewable energy, and benefits to the economy. She suggested the industry was vital for increasing job opportunities and safe, clean electricity.

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