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Connecticut picks Deepwater Wind to supply 200 MW of offshore wind

SNL Image
Deepwater Wind built the first U.S. offshore wind project in Block Island, R.I., in 2016.
Source: Deepwater Wind

Connecticut officials have chosen Deepwater Wind to provide distribution utilities 200 MW from the developer's 600-MW Revolution Wind Offshore project.

Out of the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection's clean energy request for proposals, Connecticut on June 13 selected more than 250 MW of renewable energy projects, including 52 MW of fuel cell projects from developers including a Connecticut-headquartered fuel cell division of Korea-based conglomerate Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Co. Ltd., Bloom Energy Corp. and FuelCell Energy Inc., plus a 1.6-MW anaerobic digestion facility.

Developers of the selected projects will negotiate with utilities Eversource Energy and United Illuminating Co., an Avangrid Inc. subsidiary, on 20-year power contracts. Any contracts will be subject to Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority approval.

The Revolution Wind facility is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2023, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data. In addition to supplying electricity to Connecticut, Deepwater Wind said it will invest in the New London, Conn., State Pier to improve the port's infrastructure and enable the city to become an attractive economic offshore wind hub for other projects.

Robert Klee, the state energy department's commissioner, said in a June 13 statement that the winning six projects accomplish his team's goal of providing cheaper, cleaner and more reliable energy to state residents and businesses. "Offshore wind, anaerobic digestion and fuel cells are the clean, resilient and diverse energy sources that our state and nation need," he said. "Connecticut is showing the rest of the nation what the future of clean energy looks like."

The Connecticut selection is the second for Deepwater's Revolution Wind project. In May, 400 MW from the project were selected in Rhode Island's offshore wind request for proposals. That same day as the Rhode Island decision, Massachusetts officials announced that had selected Vineyard Wind LLC's 800-MW Vineyard Offshore Wind Project to deliver electricity to residents.

The wave of announcements has indicated to clean energy proponents that New England will be the market leader for the emerging energy industry. Currently, Deepwater Wind's 30-MW Block Island Offshore Wind is the only operating project of its kind in the U.S., but the northeastern U.S. decisions say to renewable energy advocates that offshore wind is ready to take off in the U.S.

"With demand for 1,400 megawatts of U.S. offshore wind announced in less than a month, there's a golden opportunity for heavy manufacturing companies and shipbuilders to invest in American jobs, factories and infrastructure," Nancy Sopko, the American Wind Energy Association's director of offshore wind, said in a statement.