Rhode Island to issue 600 MW offshore wind call

The U.S. state of Rhode Island is planning to issue a competitive request for proposals (RFP) to procure up to 600 MW of new offshore wind energy.

A draft RFP will be filed with state regulators this fall, and if approved, a final request is expected to be issued to the marketplace in early-2021.

Any contracts for offshore wind projects resulting from the competitive process will also require separate regulatory approvals.

The competitive RFP will be developed by the National Grid, with oversight by the state Office of Energy Resources, and is subject to approval by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC).

The effort is part of Governor Gina M. Raimondo’s Executive Order 20-01, which placed Rhode Island on a path toward meeting 100% of its electricity demand with renewable energy resources by 2030.

“It is critical that we accelerate our adoption of carbon-free resources to power our homes and businesses, while creating clean energy jobs,” Governor Raimondo said.

“In January, I set a nation-leading goal for Rhode Island to meet 100 percent of its electricity demand with renewables by 2030. Offshore wind will help us achieve that bold, but achievable goal, while creating jobs and cementing our status as a major hub in the nation’s burgeoning offshore wind industry.”

To remind, Rhode Island is home to the Block Island project, the first commercial offshore wind farm in the Americas.

Last year, Ørsted and Eversource Energy received approval for their 400 MW Revolution Wind offshore wind project. Local construction work on the project site some 15km south of the Rhode Island coast will begin when all permits are secured, while commissioning is expected by 2023.

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