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Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Director Tommy P. Beaudreau have announced that BOEM will hold the first-ever competitive lease sale for renewable energy on the US Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). The auction, scheduled to take place on July 31, will offer 164,750 acres offshore Rhode Island and Massachusetts for commercial wind energy leasing.
 
The Wind Energy Area offshore Rhode Island and Massachusetts is located 9.2 nautical miles south of the Rhode Island coastline. BOEM will auction the area as two leases, referred to as the North Lease Area (Lease OCS-A0486) and the South Lease Area (Lease OCS-A0487). The North Lease Area consists of about 97,500 acres and the South Lease Area covers about 67,250 acres. The North Lease Area has the potential for installed capacity of 1,955MW and the South Lease Area, 1,440MW. The lease areas will be auctioned simultaneously. Under the procedures, BOEM will consider nonmonetary (i.e., whether a bidder holds a Joint Development Agreement or a Power Purchase Agreement) and monetary (cash bid) factors. The nonmonetary phase of the auction will begin on July 29, 2013, and the monetary phase on July 31, 2013.
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