RICHMOND (AP) -- Spanish wind giant Gamesa Energy Inc. has Virginia's approval to construct a 479-foot wind turbine prototype off the Eastern Shore.
The Virginia Marine Resources Commission unanimously approved the 5-megawatt wind turbine on Tuesday. It will be located in the lower Chesapeake Bay about three miles off the town of Cape Charles. Completion is scheduled for late next year.
Gov. Bob McDonnell hailed the development and construction of the prototype as an important step and said it puts Virginia at the forefront of clean energy technology development.
Gamesa is partnering with Huntington Ingalls Newport News Shipbuilding to develop and test new offshore wind technologies.
One of their goals is to reduce the cost of wind power.
In Norfolk Wednesday, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Director Tommy P. Beaudreau will discuss the next steps regarding conventional and renewable energy development in the Mid- and South Atlantic offshore planning areas.
They'll be joined by Douglas W. Domenech, Secretary of Natural Resources for the Commonwealth of Virginia in the visit to Fugro Atlantic offices in the World Trade Center. The company provides geotechnical, hydrogeologic, environmental and marine survey services and is involved in offshore wind development.