A few weeks ago I attended a Vineyard Power brunch. I got involved ten years ago when it was Paul Pimentel’ s dream and what has been achieved is one of the best contemporary success stories for the Island. Vineyard Power is a non-profit energy cooperative with more than 1,300 members with a goal of developing a source of sustainable energy for the Island. Projects to date include installation of solar arrays at the Aquinnah and Chilmark landfills, Cronig’s Market and the MV Boys and Girls Club.
They have successfully been awarded at the federal and state level the rights to build an offshore wind farm that will be the first in the country. The permits are in place, which was an incredible achievement in itself and as president Richard Andre said there was not a permit application created that they did not have to fill out and submit. The financing is in place and best of all it will bring approximately 100 jobs to the Island. They are also working with the high school to start technical training for our students to be able to step in to well paying, year-round jobs when they graduate. Could anything be better? This project will provide energy for our homes.
The next phase of the dream is to make the Island a totally wind dependent community to include cars, our public transportation, which is already working on electric buses, and all our town needs. It is an amazing project and not just a concept, it is a reality.
You can learn more about this initiative at www.vineyardpower.com.