Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority has finalized contracts with Equinor Wind US LLC for its 816 megawatt Empire Wind Project and Sunrise Wind LLC (a joint venture of Ørsted A/S and Eversource Energy) for its 880 megawatt Sunrise Wind Project to deliver clean, affordable renewable energy to New Yorkers.
As the largest procurement for offshore wind in the nation's history, this announcement advances Governor Cuomo's nation-leading Green New Deal goal to develop 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035 and position New York State as the regional hub of this rapidly growing industry in the United States.
"New Yorkers know all too well the devastating impacts of climate change and the catastrophic consequences if we do not act urgently," Governor Cuomo said. "By finalizing the contract awards for the nation's largest offshore wind procurement, we are realizing the positive impacts these projects will have on the environment, while diversifying our economy and bringing significant economic benefits to the Empire State."
"We are committed to supporting offshore wind projects as part of our efforts to increase renewable energy," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "These significant contracts build on our aggressive clean energy goals to reduce emissions and combat climate change. New York is leading the nation working to protect our environment and make sure it is cleaner and greener for future generations."
NYSERDA also concurrently submitted its comprehensive filing, "Launching New York's Offshore Wind Industry: Phase 1 Report," to the New York State Department of Public Service. The Report documents the successful results of New York's first large-scale offshore wind solicitation with a combined total capacity of nearly 1,700 megawatts and provides important details about these highest scoring projects.
As detailed in the Report submitted to DPS, the State's first large scale offshore wind solicitation resulted in Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Certificate prices approximately 40 percent less than projected by NYSERDA's 2018 analysis [PDF], signaling that the costs to deploy offshore wind are rapidly declining. An OREC represents the environmental benefits associated with one megawatt-hour of electricity generated from offshore wind resources and consumed by retail customers in New York State. By compensating offshore wind generators for these investments, ORECs provide financial support necessary to lay the groundwork for the industry to take root, which will yield growing dividends for New Yorkers as the industry matures. These projects are priced competitively relative to recent results from New Jersey and several New England states while also delivering significant new port infrastructure investments, public-private workforce training commitments and thousands of well-paying job opportunities.