The U.S. Jones Act Compliant Offshore Wind Turbine Installation Vessel Study examines the functional requirements and costs of constructing purpose-built vessels that would comply with the U.S. Jones Act and meet the needs of the U.S. offshore wind industry. The Jones Act requires any vessel transporting cargo between U.S. ports, or between U.S. ports and offshore facilities, be built and flagged in the U.S. The study presents designs for two Jones Act compliant vessel options: a wind turbine installation vessel and a feeder barge. Estimating packages were sent to multiple U.S. shipyards and indicative prices of $222 million for the wind turbine installation vessel and $87 million for feeder barge were received. Using the cost data, a business model was created that showed 10-years of work, or a pipeline of approximately 3,500 to 4,000 megawatts of offshore wind capacity (roughly equivalent to the expected low regional offshore wind deployment trajectory), would provide the owner of a wind turbine installation vessel with a reasonable rate of return.
Government Policy & Regulation
The Northeast Offshore Wind Regional Market Characterization report identifies the opportunities and challenges that will shape the offshore wind market. It estimates the scale of potential offshore wind deployment to serve Northeast markets through 2030, given the nature of the offshore wind resource, federal lease opportunities, state policies, regional energy needs, existing electricity generation and planned retirements, and transmission capacity. The report finds that a low regional deployment trajectory could lead to 4,000 megawatts of offshore wind generation by 2030 off the Atlantic coast of the Northeast. A high regional deployment trajectory could lead to nearly 8,000 megawatts, which could power almost four million homes. The report also provides background information on topics ranging from interconnection infrastructure and permitting timelines to electricity markets and relevant public policies.
Representative Stivers' amendment to Division D of H.R. 3219, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2018 (Make American Secure Appropriations Act, 2018), would deny funding from this division to be used for the Cape Wind Energy Project.
- Require the Secretary of Treasury to consult with the Secretaries of Energy and Interior when establishing the credit;
- Provide a 30 percent tax credit on the investment in offshore wind for the first 3,000 MW generated;
- Give Treasury the authority to make the final decision on who is awarded the tax credit. Once a credit is awarded, companies would have five years to install the wind facility;
- Prohibit companies from receiving other production or investment tax credits in addition to the offshore wind investment tax credit created under the bill; and
- Define offshore facility as any facility located in the inland navigable waters of the United States, including the Great Lakes, or in the coastal waters of the United States, including the territorial seas of the United States, the exclusive economic zone of United States, and the outer Continental Shelf of the United States.
Connecticut’s House Bill 7036, which was signed by the governor on July 27, 2017, permits the Commissioner of Energy and Environmental Protection to select proposals from providers for up to 3% of the state’s electrical distribution load from offshore wind resources.
On July 18,2017, the House Appropriations Committee adopted an amendment introduced by Congressman Andy Harris (MD-01) to the Interior Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2018. This amendment blocks the use of federal funds to conduct reviews of site assessment or construction and operation plans for wind turbines less than 24 nautical miles from the State of Maryland shoreline – the distance at which the turbines would not be visible from the shoreline and affecting the viewscape. The bill can be found here. Dowload the amendment below.