Ørsted and Equinor big Winners in New York’s 1.7 GW Wind Solicitation

Ørsted and Equinor big Winners in New York’s 1.7 GW Wind Solicitation

NYSERDA has selected two preferred bidders in the 880 MW Sunrise Wind and the 816 MW Empire Wind projects in the New York’s first offshore wind competition.

New York's Wind

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has selected two preferred bidders in the 880 MW Sunrise Wind and the 816 MW Empire Wind projects in the New York’s very first offshore wind competition.

The two projects standing at 1,696 MW in offshore wind capacity, will now have the right to negotiate offshore wind renewable energy certificates (ORECs) for a period of 25 years.

Governor Andrew Cuomo released the tender results on July 18, 2019, saying the two projects represent a combined economic activity of approximately $5-6 billion statewide, also bringing significant investment in manufacturing and port facilities. 

The  816 MW Empire Wind, is the project of Norwegian energy major Equinor, who plans to develop the project with 60-80 wind turbines, with an installed capacity of more than 10 MW each. The firm expects the total investments to be approximately $3 billion, and the project to be able to power over 500,000 homes in New York, with an expected start up in late 2024.

“Being selected in this highly competitive field of bidders shows the confidence that New York leadership has in Equinor’s capabilities of developing large offshore energy projects, delivering affordable renewable energy while also providing significant economic benefits locally. We are now looking forward to working with our partners throughout New York State to bring this project forward,” Christer af Geijerstam, president of Equinor Wind US, said.

Two years after Equinor secured an attractive 80,000-acre lease area in the New York Bight for Empire Wind, after a strong competition with other bidders, the company has been selected to negotiate a long-term contract with the NYSERDA for offshore wind renewable energy certificates (ORECs).

The 880 MW Sunrise Wind project was proposed by Denmark’s Ørsted and New England utility Eversource Energy, through their joint venture Bay State Wind LLC, and will be located 30 miles east of Montauk Point, Long Island. The project is also expected to be operational by 2024.

As part of its winning proposal for New York, Sunrise Wind will bring economic development by constructing and operations and maintenance hub in Port Jefferson, Long Island, investing in additional port infrastructure upgrades and establishing offshore wind training programs in the state of New York. Furthermore, Sunrise Wind is exploring transmission partnerships with the New York Power Authority (NYPA) and the leading New York utility Con Edison.

Martin Neubert, Executive Vice President and CEO of Ørsted Offshore, said, “New York State has set an ambitious goal to be 100% powered by clean energy by 2040. We fully share that vision, and we’re proud to bring more than two decades of offshore wind expertise to the state and to be fronting the offshore wind build-out in New York with a combined 1,000MW capacity via our South Fork and Sunrise Wind projects. Less than a year ago, we created the leading US offshore wind platform by merging the asset portfolios and competences of Deepwater Wind and Ørsted US.”

The award remains subject to the execution of the OREC purchase and sale agreement for both the projects.

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Ayush Verma

Ayush is a staff writer at saurenergy.com and writes on renewable energy with a special focus on solar and wind. Prior to this, as an engineering graduate trying to find his niche in the energy journalism segment, he worked as a correspondent for iamrenew.com.