- Published: 22 March 2021 22 March 2021
America’s offshore wind resources are big enough to produce more electricity than the nation currently consumes. To make use of these resources, policy-makers should remove the barriers slowing down the growth of the offshore wind industry.
Offshore wind has the technical capacity to power the country with clean energy. The United States has the technical potential to produce more than 7,200 terawatt-hours (TWh) of electricity from offshore wind, which is almost two times the amount of electricity the U.S. consumed in 2019 and about 90 percent of the amount of electricity the nation would consume in 2050 if we electrified our buildings, transportation system and industry, transitioning them to run on electricity instead of fossil fuels.
Nineteen of the 29 states with offshore wind potential have the technical capacity to produce more electricity from offshore wind than they used in 2019. And 11 of them have the technical capacity to produce more electricity than they would use in 2050 if the country electrified homes and commercial buildings, transportation and industry. While the U.S. neither will, nor should, develop all of its technical potential for offshore wind energy, the sheer size of the resource illustrates the critical contribution that offshore wind can make toward an energy system powered by 100 percent renewable energy.