By Baltimore Business Journal

Gov. Martin Oâ¿¿Malley was expected to renew calls for offshore wind power in Maryland as the keynote speaker at an industry conference in Baltimore on Tuesday.

Oâ¿¿Malley was scheduled to speak at the American Wind Energy Association Conference at the Baltimore Convention Center on Tuesday afternoon. A proposal to explore offshore wind in Maryland was a key piece of his legislative agenda in 2011 but the legislation did not come up for a vote in the General Assembly.

Oâ¿¿Malley was expected to call for political support for such a measure in 2012, and also to call on the wind power industry to invest in Maryland.

He is pitching offshore wind as a source of clean, local energy and also as a jobs producer. The Oâ¿¿Malley administration estimates that offshore wind, as proposed, could generate 2,000 manufacturing and construction jobs and 400 permanent jobs.

Offshore wind has been criticized for being more expensive than more traditional sources of power. A poll sponsored by environmental groups released Monday found Marylanders would be willing to pay slightly more for electricity if more of it came from local offshore wind turbines.

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