Rhode Island Energy has issued an RFP to secure an additional 1.2 GW of offshore wind to help power the state’s energy needs.
This is the largest renewable energy solicitation ever sought for Rhode Island, the company says.
Rhode Island Energy issued the RFP just a week after Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island signed a memorandum of understanding that could allow for a coordinated multi-state selection of offshore wind opportunities as each state seeks their own procurements in a similar time frame.
“Bringing more affordable offshore wind opportunities to Rhode Island and our region is a key priority for us,” says Dave Bonenberger, president of Rhode Island Energy.
“We know there’s a sense of urgency to get more renewables online, and we believe this next RFP will give developers a new, unique opportunity to think creatively about how they can meet the state’s clean energy and economic development goals, while balancing our customers’ affordability needs,” he notes.
Rhode Island is home to the nation’s first offshore wind farm, in waters off Block Island. Transmission upgrades are already under way for a second offshore wind project, known as Revolution Wind, which will bring more than 700 MW of energy to Connecticut and Rhode Island.
“With a larger capacity available, a streamlined application process, additional flexibility on contract durations, and the potential for multi-state coordination, we believe this solicitation could provide greater economies of scale for developers,” Bonenberger says. “We’re providing more tools to help drive affordable offshore wind opportunities to our state and we look forward to seeing how it spurs innovation and competitive pricing from offshore wind developers.”
Developer bids can include proposals less than or up to approximately 1.2 GW. As part of the solicitation, Rhode Island Energy is seeking bids from potential developers to enter into long-term power purchase agreements for energy and renewable energy certificates from newly developed offshore wind projects pursuant to the state’s Affordable Clean Energy Security (ACES) Act.
As outlined in the RFP, responding bids will be received through Jan. 31, 2024, with any winning bidder(s) announced in summer 2024.
Full details of the RFP will be available soon at ricleanenergyrfp.com.