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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

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
54 mins ago - Economy & Business

Trump blocks banks from limiting loans to gun and oil companies

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Big banks are no longer allowed to reject business loan applicants because of the industry in which they operate, according to a new rule finalized on Thursday by the Trump administration.

Why it matters: Wall Street has curtailed its exposure to industries like guns, oil and private prisons, driven by both public and shareholder pressures. This new rule could reverse that trend.

Former FDA commissioner: "Reliable drug supply is absolutely critical"

Axios' Caitlin Owens and former FDA commissioner Mark McClellan. Photo courtesy of Axios Events

Having a reliable supply of pharmaceutical drugs throughout America will be "absolutely critical" to boosting affordability in health care during the Biden administration, former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioner Mark McClellan said at a virtual Axios Event on Friday.

The big picture: McClellan, who served under President George W. Bush, says drugs having limited supply and limited competition leads to elevated pricing. He considers drug supply to be a national security and public health issue.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
4 hours ago - Economy & Business

Americans are still spending money

Source: Census Bureau; Chart: Axios Visuals

Americans spent more money at stores and restaurants in 2020 than they did in 2019 — even in the face of a devastating global pandemic that shut down broad sectors of the economy.

Why it matters: The monthly retail sales report this morning came in well below expectations, and showed consumer spending falling on a seasonally-adjusted basis. Total expenditures were still higher in December 2020 than they were a year previously, however.