Published: 05 August 2020 05 August 2020
The USA has an opportunity to accelerate offshore wind energy growth, and benefit from 28 new gigawatts of energy and US$ 1.7 billion in U.S. Treasury revenue by 2022, a new study from Wood Mackenzie finds.
Findings from this study confirm additional lease areas are needed to meet demand, reduce energy costs, increase competition, and ultimately generate thousands of jobs and billions in investment. Additionally, the findings offer guidance to decision-makers about new offshore wind leases, which can be a short-term solution to jump start recovery from a coronavirus pandemic-driven economic slowdown.
Commissioned by four energy industry groups, American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA), New York Offshore Wind Alliance (NYOWA), and the Special Initiative on Offshore Wind (SIOW) at the University of Delaware, the study dives into the economic impact of offshore wind activities as a result of potential Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) lease auctions in 2020, 2021 and 2022. Based on existing activities and policy assumptions for future offshore wind development, two million acres of federal waters in the New York Bight, which includes parts of New Jersey, as well as California and the Carolinas, could be auctioned for commercial leases as early as this year as well as in 2021. Such leasing could support 28 GW of offshore wind development and generate $1.2 billion in U.S. Treasury revenue. Other auctions for lease areas in the Gulf of Maine and areas in California could happen in 2022 and would generate an additional $500 million in U.S. Treasury revenue.