New Jersey Offshore Wind Bids Trickle In

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The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) has received bids from three developers in response to its solicitation for 1.1 GW of offshore wind.

The board has not disclosed the developers, but Ørsted announced on Monday it was one of the bidders. In addition, both Shell/EDF Renewables and Equinor have confirmed with North American Windpower they were the other two bidders.

At a special board meeting on Dec. 20, the NJBPU selected an economic consultant to assist in the evaluation of the applications and has sent the award recommendation to the New Jersey Department of the Treasury. Upon review and approval, the winning bidder and contract will be announced publicly. Board staff, with the support of the consultant, will review and evaluate the applications before providing a recommendation to the NJBPU. The review will consider a requirement under the Offshore Wind Economic Development Act (OWEDA) that applicants must demonstrate “positive net-economic and environmental benefits for the state.” Guidance documents were provided to help developers calculate net economic benefits of proposed projects. A board decision is anticipated in the spring.

On Jan. 31, 2018, Gov. Phil Murphy signed Executive Order No. 8, directing the NJBPU to fully implement OWEDA and begin the process of moving the state toward its 2030 goal of 3.5 GW of offshore wind energy generation.

Then, on Feb. 28, the board adopted an order directing staff to take actions to implement Executive Order No. 8, including preparing for the solicitation of 1.1 GW of offshore wind, as well as initiate a rulemaking proceeding for the funding mechanism.

In October, representatives from the NJBPU reviewed the solicitation and the required submission procedures for parties interested in submitting proposals for offshore wind projects.

“The board is extremely excited to receive these solicitations. New Jersey has regained its place as a leader when it comes to clean, renewable energy, and offshore wind power is a major component in taking us there,” says Joseph L. Fiordaliso, president of NJBPU. “We are one giant step closer to fulfilling Governor Phil Murphy’s vision of 3,500 MW of offshore wind power by 2030.”

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