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New Jersey approves over 3,700 MW of offshore wind capacity

In the US, New Jersey’s utility regulator has approved 3,742 MW of offshore wind capacity in its first round of awards as part of its drive to reach a 100% clean energy economy by 2035.
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Showing support for a sector that has been facing increasing cost and supply chain challenges, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) awarded 2,400 MW of capacity to the Invenergy and energyRE joint venture’s Leading Light Wind project and 1,342 MW to the Attentive Energy Two wind farm being developed by TotalEnergies and Corio Generation. Combined, the projects are expected to provide enough energy to power 1.8 million homes.

 

Reported to be the largest offshore wind project in the US to date, the Leading Light Wind project is slated to start construction in 2028, for start-up in 2032, and is expected to cut CO2 emissions by some 4.1mn t/y. Attentive Energy Two is expected to reduce emissions by 1.3mn t/y.

 

Commenting on the approvals, State Governor Phil Murphy said: ‘Today’s Third Solicitation awards are undeniable proof that the future of offshore wind in New Jersey is as strong as ever.’ In recognition of this, he recently directed the NJBPU to accelerate the State’s fourth offshore wind licence invitation, with project awards anticipated in early 2025.  

 

The announcement is a shot in the arm for a sector that has had a mixed start this year, with New York’s Empire Wind project being cancelled and ‘reset’, while the nation’s first commercial-scale wind farm, Vineyard Wind 1, 15 miles offshore New England, came onstream.

 

Final approvals for largest US offshore wind farm

In other US wind news, Dominion Energy has received the last two major federal approvals needed to begin construction of its 2.6 GW Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind (CVOW) project, keeping the largest planned offshore wind farm in the US on schedule to generate enough clean, renewable energy to power up to 660,000 homes once fully constructed in late 2026.

 

Meanwhile, BP and Equinor are to restructure the ownership of their joint US offshore wind projects which will see BP taking ownership of Equinor’s 50% stake in the (Massachusetts) Beacon Wind 1 and 2 projects, and Equinor taking ownership of BP’s 50% stake in the (New York state) Empire Wind 1 and 2 projects. In addition, BP is to take ownership of Equinor’s 50% interest in the Astoria Gateway for Renewable Energy (AGRE) site and, subject to certain future conditions, Equinor will take ownership of BP’s 50% interest in the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal (SBMT), both of which are in New York City. The combined potential generative capacity of the projects is in excess of 2.5 GW.

 

Looking onshore, Iberdrola, through its US subsidiary Avangrid, is to build a 147.5 MW onshore wind farm in Oklahoma, US. Pontotoc Wind will comprise 33 wind turbines and will generate around 500,000 MWh – enough to supply 40,000 homes, according to the company.  

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