Bill Koch has a nearly five-year history of opposing one of largest renewable energy initiatives in America. Cape Wind, a project to develop the country’s first offshore wind farm, has received a significant amount of media attention, not only for its prominence as the first major proposal of it’s kind, but also for the manufactured opposition from wealthy individuals like Bill Koch.
According to the project’s developer Jim Gordon and his company Energy Management Inc., Cape Wind calls for the construction of 130 wind turbines off of Horseshoe Shoal in Nantucket Sound. While the project is expected to produce 420 megawatts of energy, providing Cape Cod and the surrounding islands with three fourths of the area’s total electricity needs, Koch has been vehemently against Cape Wind.
Koch has a home overlooking the Sound in Osterville, Massachusetts, and has been quoted in a variety of publications stating that Cape Wind would ruin the beauty and hinder his sailing in the area. “Who would want to sail in a forest of windmills?” said Koch, in a 2006 Forbes article. “I don’t want this in my backyard.”
According to capewind.org, the turbines will be visible 440 feet above the water. Point Gammon is the closest land area to the development, at a distance of 5.2 miles and Nantucket is the furthest away at 13.8 miles. The Web site also adds however that Cape Wind is “farther away from the nearest home than any other electricity generation facility in Massachusetts