The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has issued its first approval of an offshore wind Site Assessment Plan to the Bay State Wind offshore wind farm being developed by DONG Energy and Eversource Energy.
Bay State Wind was announced back in December of 2016, and the joint project between Danish offshore wind energy giant DONG Energy and New England transmission builder Eversource Energy is set to develop an area off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, that has the potential for at least 2 gigawatts (GW) of capacity. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) approved late June the Site Assessment Plan for the area in which DONG Energy and Eversource want to build Bay State Wind, and on Wednesday they announced that they had deployed three meteorological buoys to measure wave and wind speeds, as well as wave direction and currents.
The two floating light and detection ranging buoys (FLIDARs) buoys and the single metocean/current buoy will be deployed for two years to measure the necessary data the project needs to move forward, and will also broadcast images, viewable 24 hours a day here.
“We are thrilled to be the first in the country to receive this approval from BOEM, and to be a part of this huge step forward for the offshore wind industry in the US,” said Thomas Brostrøm, North America president of DONG Energy. “Bay State Wind will produce reliable clean energy for Massachusetts with scale that maximizes job creation, cost effectiveness and economic benefits for Massachusetts and local communities. We look forward to continued collaboration with BOEM as we work to make Massachusetts and the U.S. a hub for offshore wind.”
“This is a significant milestone for the project and an important step forward in helping Massachusetts meet its climate change goals,” added Mike Ausere, vice president of Business Strategy at Eversource. “We’re proud to partner with the global leader in offshore wind energy and appreciate the support of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in getting this important industry off the ground in the United States.”
The Bay State Wind is one of the early projects to take advantage of the policy certainty provided by the state of Massachusetts. In August of 2016, the Massachusetts Legislature enacted and sent to the Governor a bill which would require the state to contract for 1,600 MW of offshore wind power by 2027 — signed a week after it was sent to the Governor.
“The adoption of this legislation is a landmark moment for Massachusetts’ clean energy future and a victory for the Commonwealth’s residents and businesses,” said Thomas Brostrøm, General Manager of North America, DONG Energy Wind Power said at the time. “This bill will allow the creation of a viable offshore wind energy industry here in Massachusetts, delivering cost effective clean energy, helping the state reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”
For more information about the buoys deployed at Bay State Wind, images from the onboard cameras, and the data being collected, click here.
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