New Offshore Wind Facility Approved By New York

Artist’s Rendering of Brooklyn Port Upgrade    Art: Equinor

By Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer

New York state selected Norwegian energy giant Equinor to build and supply clean energy from two offshore wind facilities in one of the largest renewable energy deals ever in the United States, according to Reuters. Under the deal, Equinor and its “strategic partner” BP will generate 3.3 total gigawatts of offshore wind power for the state. In addition, they will refurbish two port facilities in New York (the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal and Port of Albany) to support additional offshore wind projects. Per Businesswire, Equinor’s Chief Executive Anders Opedal described the successful bids as “a game-changer for our offshore wind business in the U.S.”

Why This Matters:  Offshore wind projects are a highly anticipated source of clean, renewable energy — but have been hard to get off the ground so far.  As we have reported, a large project off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard has had significant delays under the Trump administration.  But with a new administration taking over today that has pledged to decarbonize the electric power sector by 2035, and Congress recently extending the tax credits for wind projects, offshore wind is an inevitable part of the equation.  This project, along with the other offshore wind farms in development, could generate 30 gigawatts of electricity, create 83,000 jobs, and bring in 25 billion dollars in annual economic output over the next ten years.

Offshore Energy Comes to the Big Apple

Anders Opedal, also said in the statement that these offshore wind projects will help the State restore its economy after the pandemic and provide jobs to disadvantaged communities while helping New York become a leader in the nation’s quest to pursue more sustainable forms of energy. “These projects will deliver homegrown, renewable electricity to New York and play a major role in the State’s ambitions of becoming a global offshore wind hub,” continued Opedal. The upgrades will make world-class wind facilities of the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal and Port of Albany, which will provide the facilities to build offshore wind towers, transition pieces, and other manufacturing components.

BP Gets Winded

BP bought a 50% share of these Equinor projects last summer for $1.1 billion.  BP had a target of increasing its renewable power generation capacity 20 fold over the coming decade to 50 gigawatts, according to Reuters at the time of the sale.  BP will partner on the development and construction phases of these projects — they are planning on partnering to develop both bottom-fixed and floating offshore wind facilities.

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