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New York launches third offshore wind power solicitation, seeks 2 GW of capacity


6.3 GW of offshore wind being developed

Aiming for 9 GW offshore wind by 2035

First project expected by end of 2023

New York Governor Kathy Hochul July 27 announced the release of the state's third competitive offshore wind solicitation, seeking an incremental 2 GW of offshore wind power capacity to help meet the state's target of 9 GW by 2035.

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"New York is proud to continue leading the way in offshore wind development while establishing a blueprint for building a locally based green economy," Hochul said in a statement.

"Today we are putting words into action and making it clear that New York State is the national hub of the offshore wind industry," Hochul said, adding that the "clean energy transition is driving significant private investment and family-sustaining jobs in communities across the state, and we are setting ourselves up for success with a brighter and more sustainable future."

New York State is seeking to procure at least 2 GW of offshore wind power capacity through a diverse set of project proposals while leveraging public and private capital to build a strong supply chain, according to the statement.

New York's Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act calls for 70% of the state's electricity to come from renewable energy sources by 2030 and emissions-free power by 2040. Along with multiple other clean energy goals, the CLCPA mandates 9 GW of offshore wind capacity from zero operating today.

The latest solicitation, called ORECRFP22-1, will expand New York State's existing approximately 4.3 GW offshore wind portfolio which currently consists of five offshore wind projects, according to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, which administers the solicitations.

The third solicitation includes the first phase of the $500 million investment in offshore wind ports, manufacturing, and supply chain infrastructure as announced in Governor Hochul's 2022 State of the State address.

Achieving the 9 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2035 goal will generate enough electricity to power approximately 30% of New York's electricity consumption, according to the governor's office.

Specifically, NYSERDA seeks to procure Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Credits, or ORECs, through this third solicitation, the winners of which are expected to be announced in early 2023, according to NYSERDA's website.

"Releasing our third offshore wind solicitation provides a further opportunity to revolutionize our economy and continue to build a thriving offshore wind industry right here in New York as we continue to grow our nation-leading renewable energy project pipeline," NYSERDA's president and CEO Doreen Harris said in the statement.

Offshore wind progress

Including the latest solicitation, the state currently has over 6.3 GW of offshore wind projects under various stages of development.

Land-based construction began in February on the 130-MW, 12-turbine South Fork Wind project that is expected to begin service late-2023, which will be New York's first offshore wind project. The project, a 50/50 joint venture partnership between US-based Eversource and Denmark's Ørsted, is located 35 miles east of Montauk Point and the underground transmission line will deliver power to the local grid in the town of East Hampton.

Those companies are also developing the 924-MW Sunrise Wind project which is expected to come online in 2025, according to NYSERDA. The project will connect to New York's power grid at the Holbrook Substation in central Long Island.

Equinor and BP's 816-MW Empire Wind 1 project is expected to become operational in 2026 when it connects to the electricity grid at the Gowanus Substation in Brooklyn. Equinor and BP's 1,260-MW Empire Wind 2 project is expected online in 2027 connecting to the power grid in Nassau County at the Barrett Substation in Oceanside. And the 1,230-MW Beacon Wind project which is being developed by the same companies is expected to connect to the power grid through the Astoria Substation in Queens in 2028.

Further north in Massachusetts, Iberdrola subsidiary Avangrid Renewables and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners are building the 806-MW Vineyard Wind 1 project that will connect to the grid in Barnstable.

The project is on schedule to start generating power in the second half of 2023 with commercial operations beginning in 2024, Avangrid executives said during the company's second quarter 2022 earnings call on July 27.