The following press
release was provided Dec. 12, 2012, from the U.S. Department of Energy
U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu today announced seven
offshore wind awards for projects in Maine, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Texas and Virginia. As part of the
Energy Department’s broader efforts to launch an offshore wind industry in the United States,
these engineering, design and deployment projects will support innovative
offshore installations in state and federal waters for commercial operation by
States has tremendous untapped clean energy
resources, and it is important for us to develop technologies that will allow
us to utilize those resources in ways that are economically viable,” said U.S.
Secretary of Energy Steven Chu. “Today’s announcement of awards to the first
offshore wind projects in the U.S.
paves the way to a cleaner, more sustainable and more diverse domestic energy
portfolio that develops every source of American energy.”
Offshore Wind Energy Potential
Offshore wind represents a large, untapped energy resource
for the United States
– offering over 4,000 gigawatts of clean, domestic electricity potential, four
times the nation’s current total generation capacity. According to a new report commissioned by the Energy Department, a U.S. offshore wind
industry that takes advantage of this abundant domestic resource could support
up to 200,000 manufacturing, construction, operation and supply chain jobs
across the country and drive over $70 billion in annual investments by 2030.
Offshore wind represents an economic and energy opportunity that could mirror
the success of land-based wind development.
Last year, land-based wind power represented 32 percent of
all new electric capacity additions in the U.S., accounting for $14 billion in
new investment. Nearly seventy percent of the equipment installed at those U.S. wind farms
– including wind turbines and components like towers, blades, gears and
generators – is now from domestic manufacturers, doubling from 35 percent in
2005. The Production Tax Credit (PTC), which is set to expire at the end of
this year, has been a major driver of this tremendous expansion – helping to
employ thousands of Americans and launch new businesses across the country. To
continue the growth of U.S.
wind energy production and component manufacturing, the Administration has
called on Congress to extend successful clean energy tax credits like the PTC.
Visit the DOE’s website to view an interactive map displaying the announced wind projects
offshore wind resource potential. In the initial phase, each project will
receive up to $4 million to complete the engineering, design and permitting
phase of this award. The DOE will select up to three of these projects for
follow-on phases that focus on siting, construction and installation and aim to
achieve commercial operation by 2017. These projects will receive up to $47
million each over four years, subject to Congressional appropriations.
The Energy Department’s efforts to advance innovative
offshore wind technologies support the Obama Administration’s
comprehensive National Offshore Wind Strategy to develop a
sustainable, world-class offshore wind industry. As part of that strategy, the
Energy Department continues to work with partners across the government,
including the Department of the Interior, to conduct resource assessments,
streamline siting and permitting and overcome technical and market challenges
to installation, operations and grid interconnection.