Offshore wind and wave power are renewable energy sources that share the marine environment. Collocating these systems can reduce power variability; however, the extent of this differs between sites. Regional differences in combined system variability are investigated.
Siting, Leasing, & Permitting
(Generation, Transmission, & Grid Interconnection)
Many US Atlantic Coast states have set rigorous goals for offshore wind power generation and developers have responded by leasing established wind energy areas from the federal government. The total project generation under contract has surpassed 6 GW across several established wind energy areas. Under the Biden administration, the US has redoubled efforts to improve and accelerate permitting and job creation as well as support new infrastructure and other research and development initiatives.
The SARAL-AltiKa dataset was evaluated for refined offshore wind energy resources assessment and potential metocean monitoring capability in the Southern New England region. Surface wind speed and Significant Wave Height (Hs) products were assessed with corresponding variables from buoy observations for 2014–2019. To increase the sample size, this study analyzed and applied an approach to collect data around the reference buoys beyond the satellite footprint at the expense of a bias increment. The study corroborated the accuracy of the SARAL-AltiKa measurements for the offshore area of interest and added details for stations closer to the coast compared with past studies.
In October 2021, BOEM announced a proposed schedule for seven new lease area auctions across the United States by 2025. These include areas in the New York Bight, Northern & Central California, Carolina Long Bay, Oregon, the Gulf of Mexico, the Gulf of Maine, and the Central Atlantic. In the first three lease areas—New York Bight, California, and Carolina Long Bay—BOEM has already progressed to the Proposed Sale Notice (PSN) phase of the leasing process within previously identified Wind Energy Areas (WEAs). This study forecasts the revenue that BOEM could expect to accrue both from the sale of the area leases and the long-term rents and operating fees paid by projects developed in those areas, which necessarily involves estimating the size of the lease areas that will go to auction in the remaining four lease areas. Economic impacts from these future projects are also calculated.
On January 18, 2022, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management approved the Construction and Operations Plan for the South Fork Wind Farm and South Fork Export Cable Project. The South Fork project will be located within federal waters on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) in BOEM Renewable Energy Lease Area OCS-A 0517, approximately 19 miles southeast of Block Island, Rhode Island, and 35 miles east of Montauk Point, New York.
The purpose of this public notice is to: (1) Describe the proposal submitted to BOEM by the Commonwealth of Virginia, Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy (DMME) to acquire an OCS lease for wind energy research activities; (2) solicit indications of interest in a renewable energy lease in the area identified by DMME for substantially similar wind energy activities; and (3) solicit public input regarding the proposal, its potential environmental consequences, and the use of the area in which the proposed project would be located.
Consistent with the regulations implementing the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announces its intent to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) for the review of a construction and operations plan (COP) submitted by Empire Offshore Wind, LLC (Empire). The COP proposes the construction and operation of two wind energy facilities offshore New York with two export cable routes and up to three export cable landfalls in New York. This notice of intent (NOI) announces the EIS scoping process for the Empire Wind COP.
BOEM is proposing a lease sale for the Wilmington East Wind Energy Area (WEA), located in the Carolina Long Bay Area offshore North Carolina. The area proposed for the lease sale consists of approximately 127,865 acres and includes the majority of the Wilmington East WEA, which has the potential to unlock over 1.5 GW of offshore wind energy and power more than 500,000 homes.
The purpose of this Project is to provide between 2,500 and 3,000 megawatts (MW) of clean, reliable offshore wind energy; to increase the amount and availability of renewable energy to Virginia and North Carolina consumers; to create the opportunity to displace electricity generated by fossil fuel-powered plants, and to offer substantial economic and environmental benefits to the Commonwealth of Virginia.
The Outer Continental Shelf along the U.S. east coast exhibits abundant wind resources and is now a geographic focus for offshore wind deployments. This analysis derives and presents expected extreme wind and wave conditions for the sixteen lease areas that are currently being developed.