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Key Step Nears in Va. Quest for Offshore Winds

A top state energy official says the federal government is preparing to accept expressions of interest from prospective developers of wind power in Virginia's coastal waters.

Deputy Secretary of Natural Resources Maureen Matsen says that's
a "critical step" in developing wind power off Virginia's shores.

At least two companies have submitted unsolicited bids for federal leases, and Dominion Virginia Power is expected to express its interest in developing offshore power.

Matsen said Wednesday that the government's call for requests is
important because it will help define the leasing area approximately 15-20 miles off Virginia Beach.

She called it a first step in developing offshore wind energy for Virginia.

The governor's energy guru made her remarks during a meeting of
the Virginia Offshore Wind Development Authority in suburban Richmond.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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