A Roadmap for Multi-State Cooperation on Offshore Wind Development

Maine, Massachusetts, New York, and Rhode Island are working together, assisted by the Clean Energy States Alliance (CESA), to develop a regional offshore wind roadmap. The participating agencies in this collaborative project are the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources, the Maine Governor’s Energy Office, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), and the Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources. CESA is playing a coordinating role.

In 2015, the US Department of Energy awarded a grant of $592,000 to NYSERDA for the project. The grant period runs from January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2016.

This webpage provides general information about the Roadmap. As the project’s analytical reports and other work products are completed, they will be posted here, as will information about webinars and other project outreach.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

Together, the states are exploring the potential for mutual action to develop offshore wind at the scale necessary to reduce costs by achieving economies of scale and establishing a regional supply chain. The states will each evaluate their state’s individual objectives and the objectives of the region to scope out a near-term and long-term pipeline of projects on a regional scale using several possible penetration scenarios. They will quantify the potential cost reductions from these pipeline scenarios. A final product of the project will be a detailed Regional Roadmap for follow-up action.

The project’s primary goal is to examine how to bring scale to the offshore wind opportunity in the Northeast and identify what opportunities can be developed to collaborate in the region to drive cost reductions. With the Regional Roadmap in hand, the states will be able to move forward on offshore wind with greater knowledge and greater confidence. That should lead to faster and less expensive development of a renewable energy resource with the potential to provide many economic and environmental benefits to the states in the Northeast.

PROJECT TASKS

This collaborative efforts will result in three main work products. All the reports will be publically available and will be shared and discussed through newsletters and public webinars. The reports are:

Regional Market Characterization Report—this report shall summarize the near and long-term regional offshore wind market opportunities in the Northeast.  The metrics provided in this report will lead to the base case and scenarios analyzed in the subsequent Pipeline Cost Analysis. In particular, the report seeks to answer: What could the size of a near- and long-term regional offshore wind market be given the individual states’ policy drivers, energy needs, and resources bases? This report is being produced by a team led by Sustainable Energy Advantage, LLC and including AWS Truepower, Daymark Energy Advisors, Exeter Associates, and Meister Consultants Group.

Pipeline Cost Analysis Report—this report will examine reductions in the delivered cost of energy resulting from the economies of scale achieved from a larger market size, the impact on the cost of energy from establishing a regional supply chain, how states might best plan for development of a sustained pipeline of projects, and explore collaborative approached in addition to individual state actions to realizing the project pipeline. The report will outline actions states could take to reduce offshore wind costs, plus the timing, sequence, and scale necessary. The report’s findings will inform the development of the regional roadmap report. This report is being produced by a team led by Daymark Energy Advisors and including AWS Truepower, BVG Associates, Economic Development Research Group, Exeter Associates, Meister Consultants Group, and Sustainable Energy Advantage, LLC.

Regional Roadmap Report—the regional roadmap will build off the information and analyses presented in the above two reports. It will articulate how the states could work together to advance offshore wind development. It will be a tool for states to begin to move forward on joint actions and project development. The project Steering Committee has not yet selected the team that will write the Regional Roadmap Report.

PROJECT MANAGEMENT

This work is guided by a Steering Committee comprised of the state agencies listed above. A full list of the Steering Committee members is available here.

An Advisory Committee consisting of a broad group of stakeholders provides input, review, and expertise on the project research and analysis, draft reports, and other strategies. A full list of the Advisory Committee members is available here. In addition, the project engages a larger, broader group of stakeholders through outreach, webinars, newsletters and social media.

The Clean Energy States Alliance is helping to coordinate and manage the project. Paul Gromer from Peregrine Energy Group is serving as project facilitator.

PROJECT TIMELINE

The multi-state collaboration is a one-year DOE-funded project. Within that time frame we expect to:

  • Publish the Regional Market Characterization in May/June
  • Publish the Pipeline Cost Analysis in August/September
  • Publish the Regional Roadmap in November/December
  • Conduct extensive outreach on the Regional Roadmap once it is finalized.

EXPECTED OUTCOMES AND IMPACTS

The states will help build an offshore wind market of sufficient scale to drive down costs and achieve economic development benefits. Offshore wind development will have significant economic and environmental benefits. It will:

  • Help to achieve individual state renewable targets and comply with EPA’s Clean Power Plan
  • Address peak demand by providing more electricity during summer and winter peaking hours
  • Increase fuel diversity and regional energy security
  • Delink the region from the volatility of fossil fuel price fluctuations
  • Create good-paying jobs installing and maintaining offshore wind farms
  • Create a regional supply chain, including manufacturing, that would boost regional economic development and create jobs
  • Reduce pollution and greenhouse gas emissions
  • Reduce the need for long-distance transmission upgrades
  • Increase electricity system reliability if projects are interconnected with more than one control area
  • Address electricity needs in load centers with high electricity costs by siting renewable generation close to metropolitan areas
  • Provide a higher capacity factor and increased production per MW, compared to other renewables.

CONTACT US

For more information on this multi-state project, please contact Val Stori at Val@cleanegroup.org. To receive periodic email updates on this project, please sign up for our offshore wind mailing list.