New York Begins Process for Second Offshore Wind Solicitation to Procure At Least 1,000 Megawatts

The New York Public Service Commission completed a draft environmental review analysing the potential impacts associated with the procurement of up to 1.8 gigawatts of additional offshore wind generation in the near term, according to a Feb. 6 notice. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority on Jan. 28 asked the commission to authorize an additional solicitation for the procurement of at least 1,000 megawatts of offshore wind in 2020.

The additional solicitation is both warranted and necessary for New York to maintain its trajectory toward meeting its clean energy goals, according to NYSERDA. The first solicitation held last year resulted in contracts for 1.7 gigawatts of projects, one proposed by Norway’s Equinor ASA and another by a joint venture between Denmark’s Orsted A/S and Eversource Energy. New York, which set the pace for offshore wind goals, seeks to develop 9 gigawatts by 2035. The state has a goal to source 70 percent of its electricity from renewable energy sources by 2030 and transition to zero-emitting generation a decade later.

NYSERDA’s petition provides the rationale for the additional procurement, including the success of the Phase 1 solicitation and downward cost trends, developments in the U.S. offshore wind market since the issuance of the offshore wind order, and the 18 percent federal tax credit available to wind facilities that begin construction in 2020. Further, Governor Andrew Cuomo called for a second solicitation in his 2020 State of the State address.

The draft environmental assessment builds upon the Offshore Wind Master Plan and the generic environmental impact statement used to evaluate the 2.4-gigawatt offshore wind target in the Offshore Wind Order.

Comments on the draft report are due by March 20.