Maryland regulators OK nation's largest offshore wind plan

Maryland regulators OK nation's largest offshore wind plan

Maryland regulators OK nation's largest offshore wind plan

Maryland regulators on Thursday approved two offshore wind projects totaling 368 MW, setting in motion what the state called the nation's "first large-scale" offshore wind deployment.

U.S. Wind Inc. and Skipjack Offshore Energy LLC were awarded offshore wind renewable energy credits that will be in effect for 20 years.

Commission chairman W. Kevin Hughes says the decision brings to fruition the General Assembly's efforts to establish Maryland as a regional hub for the developing offshore wind industry.

The Gemini Offshore Wind Farm is expected to meet the energy needs of 1.5 million citizens of the Netherlands over the next 15 years. Additionally, the Netherlands' new wind farm also has two offshore high-voltage substations connected to the land station in Eemshaven by a 110-kilometer export cable.

The partnership of the two companies is expected to bring extensive wind expertise and substantial financial firepower to the Commonwealth's initiative to build offshore wind projects in MA. It will connect to the grid at an Ocean City substation.

The PSC's Rhode Island and NY, while Maryland joins MA as states developing their offshore resources under Republican governors. US Wind's application is the only one that utilizes the designated Maryland Offshore Wind Area and was determined to be administratively complete by the Public Service Commission and to have met all ratepayers' safeguard criteria. "We look forward to continuing our dialogue with the Ocean City community about the Skipjack Wind Farm".

Three companies to date have acquired lease rights to build projects off the coast, including Vineyard Wind.

US Wind, a subsidiary of Italy's Toto Holdings, thanked the PSC for the decision in a statement, saying "Maryland is now the undisputed national leader for offshore wind".

The project is expected to create a total of 75-100 maintenance and administrative jobs in Eemshaven, a seaport in the municipality of Groningen. Capable of producing 2.6 TWh of sustainable energy every year, The Gemini Offshore Wind Park could help in reducing the carbon dioxide emissions of the Netherlands by 1.25 million tons.

Related news