US planning more offshore wind leases off MA coast
Two firms indicate they want in on Bay State action
IN ANOTHER SIGN the offshore wind market is heating up, the federal government indicated on Friday that it intends to lease more ocean tracts off the coast of Massachusetts after hearing interest from two major developers.
The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management said PNE Wind USA and Statoil Wind submitted unsolicited lease requests for two ocean tracts off the coast of Massachusetts with a total size of 388,569 acres. PNE Wind is a Chicago-based subsidiary of a German firm, while Statoil is a Norwegian oil company trying to become a big player in renewable energy.
“BOEM has determined that competitive interest exists and plans to proceed with the competitive leasing process outlined in BOEM’s regulations,” the agency said in a note to stakeholders.
PNE Wind also submitted a lease request for a 40,920-acre ocean tract off the coast of New York. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management said it was considering issuing a public notice to see if other wind developers would be interested in bidding on the same tract.
Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation, said the announcement on Friday represented another promising sign for the US wind industry. “Today’s announcement by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to advance new offshore wind leases is a clear sign of momentum,” O’Mara said in a statement.