It didn't take long for area fishermen to realize that Joe Biden is not their friend.

Biden, or whoever is calling the shots these days in Washington, rushed through a review of the Vineyard Wind offshore wind farm, moving the project, expected to be online by the end of 2023, closer to becoming a reality.

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, an arm of the U.S. Department of the Interior, says it has completed the project's final environmental impact statement. The project now moves to the final permitting phase.

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President Donald Trump slowed the review process over concerns about the negative impacts an offshore wind farm could have on the commercial and recreational fishing industries. Fishermen say the wind farm, some 15 miles south of Martha's Vineyard, would pose navigational hazards and negatively impact marine life resulting in higher prices for seafood and lost jobs.

The wind industry argues the wind farm would bring cheaper, safer, and cleaner energy to Massachusetts – but many analysts disagree. They say installing turbines at sea is considerably more costly than placing them on land and requires more frequent and expensive repairs. They also argue that the amount of energy generated is unpredictable due to changes in weather patterns.

Disposing of worn windmill blades and other pieces is problematic as well. Currently, many spent blades get buried in the desert in Utah as they are not biodegradable. That is not a very environmentally sound solution.

It's not the first time Joe Biden has dealt the fishing industry a losing hand. The Obama-Biden Administration closed fishing grounds off the New England coast by declaring the area a national monument. Trump reversed the decision upon taking office.

Windmills are noisy, unsightly, expensive, and not environmentally sound. Tell Washington to reject the Vineyard Wind project.

Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at barry@wbsm.com and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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