Supply chain positioning for emerging wind market
The oil and gas supply chain is positioning for what appears to be an emerging US offshore wind market. There are at least 12 projects in various stages of development in the US that could deliver about 10 GW of power by 2030.
The first US offshore wind farm, Deepwater Wind’s five-turbine, 30-MW Block Island offshore Rhode Island, has been operating since 2016, and paves the way for likeminded developers. Plans have been filed with BOEM for the construction and operations of two projects. One of them, South Fork Wind, calls for 15 turbines offshore Rhode Island that would connect to a grid in East Hampton, New York.
Meanwhile, BOEM is planning to auction leases offshore Massachusetts on Dec. 18 of this year, and possibly acreage offshore New York in 2019. The results of the auction for acreage in Massachusetts state waters, where the wind resources and local market demand are considered ideal for project development, will be a strong indicator of developer confidence in the market. Nineteen companies have prequalified for the lease sale. Federal regulators are also gauging interest in areas offshore California, for a possible future lease sale.