Biden Administration Seeks to Expand Wind Farms in Coastal Waters

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US targets projects in Atlantic coast, Pacific coast and Gulf of Mexico

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Ms Haaland said the leasing plan was intended to meet President Biden’s goal of generating 30 gigawatts of electricity through offshore wind, enough to power millions of homes by 2030, in order to create “a clean energy future.” To accelerate the transition of the country.” He made the announcement at the Renewable Energy Conference in Boston.

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However, opening up federal waters to wind farms is the first step. Proposed wind-farm areas would still undergo environmental review, and private companies would be required to lease the tracts.

Heather Zeichl, CEO of the renewable energy business group American Clean Power Association, called the administration’s offshore wind-generation goal “ambitious but achievable.”

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“Using America’s offshore wind resources will create thousands of highly skilled jobs, revitalize coastal communities, and provide large amounts of reliable clean energy,” she said.

The Interior Department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, which handles offshore energy projects, is looking for additional locations off the coast that may be suitable for wind-turbine development. Representatives of the department said it would work to reduce conflicts with other ocean users and marine life.

Earlier this year, the $2.8 billion Vineyard Wind project from Massachusetts received its final federal approval, making it the nation’s first large-scale offshore wind farm. A small wind farm began operating off the coast of Rhode Island in 2016.

Federal and state officials are working to develop two wind farm sites off the coast of California with enough electricity to power nearly 1.6 million homes, the first US commercial-scale wind projects off the Pacific Coast. Renewable energy advocates have long sought to take advantage of strong wind currents off California’s North Sea coast.

On Wednesday, Interior Department officials said they were reviewing nine construction and operation plans for other projects and plan to complete the review of six more projects by 2025.

Additional details were buoyed by the National Ocean Industries Association, an industry trade group whose members could benefit from future offshore wind turbine projects.

“Providing a reliable and predictable road map of offshore wind opportunities will help fuel significant investments in the supply chain, ports and workers,” said NOIA President Eric Milito.

Katy Steak Ferek at [email protected]

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