Offshore wind towers (Flickr)

Connecticut passes bill to procure up to 2 GW of offshore wind power

Connecticut lawmakers on Tuesday passed House Bill 7156, which will require the commissioner of the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) to solicit up to 2 GW of offshore wind capacity. The bill substantially increases the state's offshore wind procurement target, which previously stood at 300 MW.

A March report by the University of Delaware's Special Initiative on Offshore Wind said that America's offshore wind industry, which is projected to generate nearly 20 GW on the East Coast by 2030, presents a $70 billion business opportunity.

Dive Insight:

Connecticut is joining some of its East Coast neighbors, including Massachusetts, New York and New Jersey, in significantly increasing its offshore wind commitment. Gov. Ned Lamont, D, is expected to sign the bill immediately.

The offshore wind turbines associated with the procurement would be located in federal waters 40 to 60 miles from the Connecticut coastline, according to the Sierra Club. The state's increased offshore wind commitment could power 800,000 households and would utilize the State Pier in New London as a construction hub.Last month, Lamont outlined plans for a $93 million upgrade to the state pier.

"We applaud the commitment of Chairmen Needleman and Arconti, Ranking Member Formica, and the hard work of local officials, business leaders and the public to nurture this new industry, create good jobs and expand clean energy. We look forward to working together to advance Connecticut's clean energy economy," Eversource and Ørsted U.S. Offshore Wind, who have formed a joined venture, said in a statement emailed to Utility Dive.

In other recent offshore wind developments, the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources published on Friday a report recommending additional procurement of up to 1.6 GW of offshore wind for the state.

And in November, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority issued a request for proposals to procure 800 MW or more of offshore wind resources.

See Utility Dive article . . .

See also Operations start at world’s biggest offshore wind farm