Greater Boston residents ready for offshore wind

A new poll has found that a clear majority of Greater Boston residents back offshore wind over fossil fuel power.

The MassINC Polling Group asked for local opinions on what should replace the Mystic Generating Station in Everett, a 2,000 MW coal and gas plant due for retirement in 2024. According to the poll, which was commissioned by transmission and grid developer Anbaric, 70% of respondents would prefer not to keep the plant open past its retirement date.

58% prefer for offshore wind power to be transmitted to the state of Massachusetts via underwater cables, while only 19% would prefer the land-based transmission of fossil fuel power. A whopping 77% of respondents said the state should rely more on wind power, as opposed to 37% who believe the state should rely more on natural gas.

The priorities for residents in the Greater Boston area are clear, as 64% said reducing air pollution should be a high priority, 63% saying the same for addressing climate change, and 53% saying that high priorities should include expanding renewable energy.

Anbaric proposed the Mystic Reliability Wind Link, an offshore wind interconnection at the site of the power station, back in 2019. Under proposals, up to 1.2 GW of electricity from offshore wind farms would run between Plymouth and Everett.

Massachusetts residents recognize the vital importance and potential of renewable energy,” said Theodore Paradise, Senior Vice President for Transmission Strategy at Anbaric. “The retirement of Mystic is once-in-a-generation opportunity to tap into our growing offshore wind resource, reduce air pollution and avoid often-delayed overland transmission. Our Mystic Reliability Wind Link proposal will strengthen reliability and help set the stage for the next generation of clean energy in the region.”