Survey activities ramping up on Equinor and BP’s New York offshore wind site
Two survey activities are planned to start this month at the Empire Wind offshore wind farm site located about 20 miles south of Long Island.
The first is a short-term underwater sediment survey campaign, planned to begin in late June. The sediment survey experts will sample the seabed along the proposed Empire Wind 1 and 2 cable routes.
No excavation or dredging will take place, no sonar will be used, and no subsurface sound outside of the normal mechanical operation will be produced during this process, according to the press release.
Surveying is expected to begin in late June and is planned to be completed by 15 August 2023.
Up to 35 sediment core samples will be analysed to inform the design of underwater cables for the Empire 1 and 2 offshore wind farms.
The second survey is for munitions and explosives of concern (MEC) which is planned to last from June until December 2023.
Equinor Wind US awarded Ocean Infinity to conduct the MEC survey campaign which will be done along the proposed Empire Wind 1 and 2 cable routes to see if they detect abandoned military materials that could pose a risk to the construction team and the local area.
Empire Wind 1 and 2 offshore wind farms are being developed by Equinor and bp.
The 816 MW Empire Wind Phase 1 wind farm was selected in New York’s first-ever offshore wind solicitation in 2019 alongside Ørsted and Eversource Energy’s Sunrise Wind project.
The 1,260 MW Empire Wind 2 was selected in the state’s offshore wind power solicitation in January 2021 together with their Beacon Wind 1 project south of Nantucket.
Equinor will be the operator through the development, construction, and operations phases of the projects.
The offshore wind farms will utilise 15 MW wind turbines and are expected to play a major role in meeting New York State’s goal of reaching 70 per cent renewable energy by 2030, according to the developers.
Once completed, Empire Wind 1 and Empire Wind 2 will have a total installed capacity of more than 2 GW and will power more than one million New York homes.