The Associated Press (via Business Week) reports that two companies have filed applications with MMS under its relatively new offshore renewable energy program to lease federal lands in order to study the prospects for and potentially build wind farms offshore Virginia. Apex Wind Energy is seeking to lease 116,000 acres of submerged lands offshore Virginia to build a wind farm that could generate up to 1,500 megawatts of electricity. Seawind Renewable Energy has applied to install 240 wind turbines on a tract of submerged lands off the Virginia coast. An official with Seawind cited Virginia's manufacturing base as a positive factor for locating the company's wind farm off the state's coast, saying "there is a lot of heavy manufacturing involved in offshore wind and the Hampton Roads region is set up for that manufacturing and to take a big part of that."