The budget about to be signed by Gov. Ralph Northam includes $350 million to kick-start a major dredging project in the shipping channel. If the project goes forward, shipping channels in the port of Hampton Roads will go from 50 feet to 55 feet in some places, surpassing Los Angeles, the busiest port in the nation. A Northam spokeswoman said the expansion would increase the port’s capacity by 40 percent or, put another way, 1 million more containers.
Gov. Ralph Northam announced May 22 the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy was looking for proposals. Hampton Roads – with its port infrastructure and workforce – was touted by Northam as an ideal location for wind energy. “Virginia should be the prime location for the offshore wind industry, from the supply chain to the full build-out of our offshore wind assets off the coast,” Northam said in the release.
Dominion Energy is reviving plans for an offshore wind energy project 27 miles east of Virginia Beach in a move it hopes will set the stage to make the Hampton Roads region a national leader in a still-developing technology. The company hopes to have two wind turbines — “taller than the Washington Monument” as CEO chief executive Tom Farrell put it — online by the end of 2020.