Case | HBS Case Collection | January 2008 (Revised May 2008)

Cape Wind: Offshore Wind Energy in the USA

by Richard Vietor


Cape Wind is an extreme example of NIMBY--not in my backyard syndrome. This is the first offshore wind project planned for the United States, in Nantucket Sound, just south of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Initially proposed six years ago, in 2001, the wind farm would be visible from Hyannis port and Osterville, two affluent communities. The coastal residents of those towns have led a campaign in Massachusetts and in Congress to thwart the efforts of Cape Wind. This case introduces the global wind industry, the rationale for wind, and then carefully reviews the various issues associated with the project.

Keywords: Renewable Energy; Corporate Entrepreneurship; Business Startups; Projects; Government and Politics; Environmental Sustainability; Business and Community Relations; Public Opinion; Power and Influence; Energy Industry; Massachusetts;


Vietor, Richard. "Cape Wind: Offshore Wind Energy in the USA." Harvard Business School Case 708-022, January 2008. (Revised May 2008.)