Jul 19, 2019

New York inks largest offshore wind agreement in the U.S.

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

New York State officials yesterday announced that Norway-based Equinor and a joint venture that includes Denmark's Orsted had won the solicitation to build 2 large offshore wind projects totaling around 1.7 gigawatts.

Why it matters: It's the biggest offshore wind agreement in the U.S. to date and, per New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office, will provide enough electricity for over 1 million homes.

  • The projects — one from Equinor and another from Orsted-Eversource Energy JV — are slated for completion by 2024, per Greentech Media.

Quick take: It highlights something we wrote about in March — the marriage of aggressive policies in northeastern U.S. and deep-pocketed, experienced Europe-based players is finally jumpstarting offshore wind in the U.S.

Where it stands: Action in several states is leading some analysts to revise their projections for U.S. offshore wind.

  • BloombergNEF recently upgraded their forecast to 15.4 GW of U.S. offshore wind capacity by 2030, up from 11.4 GW in their prior analysis.
  • Max Cohen of IHS Markit says that consultancy will soon be revising its estimates too, from the current projection of 7 GW by 2030.
  • Combine the "flurry" of contracting from New York and New Jersey with the legislative mandates for offshore wind in N.Y., Connecticut and Maryland, and the estimate rises a lot, Cohen says via email.

The bottom line: "These are very positive sign posts for the industry, and though there are still risks and some of these projects/targets could be delayed, we are tentatively thinking more like 11 GW by 2030 is likely," Cohen says.

Go deeper: Prices of renewable energy sources plummeted between 2009 and 2017

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Report: Major wind project off Massachusetts coast hits snag

Offshore windfarm in Redcar, England. Photo: Ian Forsyth/Getty Images

Federal approval for a large wind farm off the Massachusetts coast is being held up by "infighting" among agencies, Reuters reports.

Why it matters: The problems come as U.S. offshore wind, which has been very slow to get moving, finally appears poised to become a major industry as deep-pocketed developers plan large projects off several states.

Go deeperArrowJul 29, 2019

Wind power is winning in the U.S. despite Trump's critiques

Data: U.S. Department of Energy; Chart: Axios Visuals

President Trump used a speech at a Shell petrochemicals plant in Pennsylvania on Tuesday to revive his attacks against wind energy, but his speech came just days after Department of Energy's latest major analysis of wind technology trends.

Why it matters: The timing of the president's speech clashed with the report, which underscored why wind has become an increasingly competitive resource.

Go deeperArrowAug 14, 2019

As wind and solar energy grow, so do their challenges

Data: WoodMac; Chart: Axios Visuals

Costs for wind and solar electricity have plummeted in the U.S. and around the world, driving incredible growth in these cleaner sources of energy and helping combat climate change.

But, but, but: The costs associated with the variability of wind and solar — it’s not always windy or sunny — are growing as states, progressive politicians and corporations push for rapid increases in these resources to levels much greater than what we have today.