Deepwater Wind Looks to Wainscott

A view of a wind turbine at the Block Island Wind Farm. Peter Boody photo

By Kathryn G. Menu

Wainscott’s Beach Lane has been identified by Deepwater Wind, the firm behind a proposed 15-turbine wind farm 30 miles off the coast of Montauk, as the ideal location for the cable bringing electricity to connect to the town’s power grid.

On Tuesday, Clint Plummer, the firm’s vice president of development, gave the first of what is expected to be a series of public meetings about the South Fork Wind Farm to the East Hampton Town Board. Deepwater Wind is expected to make another presentation Monday, December 11, to the East Hampton Town Trustees, where Mr. Plummer said the firm will discuss environmental issues associated with the project.

On Tuesday, Deepwater Wind officials told the town board the landing site in Wainscott offered the best protection for the cable itself from erosion or damage during coastal storms, and was also the shortest route on the ground to a PSEG substation in East Hampton Village.

In addition to paying the town for the right to bury the electrical line, it will also have to pay for easements along Beach Lane and for the use of right-of-ways between the beach and the substation. Mr. Plummer said the company would also give the East Hampton Town Trustees $600,000 for environmental projects, including improving fisheries and habitats on bay bottoms, marsh and wetlands controlled by trustees.

Mr. Plummer said the firm also planned to operate out of Montauk during the project’s 25-year lifespan, and would make an effort to hire local residents if possible.

The South Fork Wind Farm would theoretically go online in 2022 with a permitting process expected to take two years. Officials from Deepwater Wind, which has a 20-year contract with the Long Island Power Authority, say the wind farm will provide electricity to 50,000 homes.