Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the New York State Public Service Commission has set a course for the state's first procurements of offshore wind to support New York's goal of 2,400 megawatts of new offshore wind generation by 2030, enough to power 1.2 million New York households. This first phase of the state's procurements includes obtaining approximately 800 megawatts of offshore wind by 2019. With the issuance of this seminal order, New York has taken another major step toward the development of offshore wind off its Atlantic Coast, which will support the state's goal to obtain 50 percent of its electricity from renewables by 2030.
"This action represents another major step toward establishing a clean energy future that is secure, reliable and cost-effective," Governor Cuomo said. "Robust offshore wind development is not only critical to meeting our clean energy and carbon reduction goals, this investment has the potential to create thousands of jobs and fuel a $6 billion industry for New York as it combats climate change."
To achieve the Governor's 2,400 MW goal, the New York State Energy Research & Development Authority will procure approximately 800 MW of offshore wind through a solicitation issued in the fourth quarter of 2018, in consultation and coordination with the New York Power Authority and the Long Island Power Authority. Awards are expected to be announced in the second quarter of 2019. If needed, a second solicitation will be issued in 2019.
Offshore wind costs have declined significantly in Europe and elsewhere around the world. As the industry develops, New York is ideally positioned to capitalize on these declining costs, economic opportunity, and renewable energy resource in support of the state's climate goals. NYSERDA estimates that by 2030, New York can attract a $6 billion New York industry that will support nearly 5,000 new jobs in manufacturing, installation and operation of offshore wind facilities. Nearly 2,000 of these jobs would be in operations and maintenance, providing long-term career opportunities.
Today's action authorizes NYSERDA to include commitments to project labor agreements and prevailing wages as contract requirements for any awarded project. These provisions will ensure that good-paying jobs are associated with the development of offshore wind for New York State. Further, the order includes provisions to ensure that any awarded offshore wind projects consider the interests of ocean users such as commercial and recreational fishing, environmental stakeholders and coastal communities.
Through these solicitations, NYSERDA will procure Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Certificates, ORECs, from awarded facilities. Each electric utility and other third-party suppliers of electricity serving retail customers in New York will support these new offshore wind resources through the purchase of ORECs from NYSERDA.
Richard Kauffman, Chairman of Energy and Finance, New York State, said, "Under Governor Cuomo and as part of this order issued by the Public Service Commission today, New York is building a viable and leading offshore wind industry with high-quality jobs for New York and the Atlantic Coast. Offshore wind is a tremendous clean energy source that will not only power millions of New York homes and businesses cleanly and affordably, it will help us combat climate change and reduce our reliance on dirty fossil fuels."
Public Service Commission Chair John B. Rhodes said, "Offshore wind promises to be a great, clean, cost-effective source of energy for New Yorkers. With today's action, we move decisively to procure 800 MW of this resource, on the path to meeting Governor Cuomo's goal of procuring 2,400 megawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030."
The New York State Offshore Wind Master Plan was announced earlier this year by Governor Cuomo and will guide the state in the responsible and cost-effective development of 2,400 MW of offshore wind by 2030. The Governor also directed NYSERDA to invest $15 million in clean energy workforce development and infrastructure advancement to train workers to support the growth of the offshore wind industry. In June, NYSERDA was awarded a $18.5 million U.S. Department of Energy grant to lead the National Offshore Wind Research and Development Consortium. This nationwide offshore wind research and development consortium will be supported through a public-private partnership including the offshore wind industry, utilities, research laboratories, and other states.
NYSERDA will hold a technical conference to discuss topics related to the solicitation process at The Department of Public Service's New York City office (90 Church Street, New York) and via webinar on Monday, July 23.
Alicia Barton, President and CEO, NYSERDA said, "Today's announcement underscores Governor Cuomo's unwavering commitment to ensuring offshore wind is developed responsibly, cost-effectively and in the very near future. New York has all of the assets—labor, ports, and policies—required to become a global hub for this emerging industry and we fully plan to capitalize on these strengths so that New Yorkers will reap the substantial environmental and economic benefits that offshore wind will bring."
Gil C. Quiniones, President and CEO, New York Power Authority, said, "New York State has long been a leader in clean energy, with its long history of clean hydropower generation, and we believe off-shore wind is the next frontier that will lead to more clean energy jobs, as well as new infrastructure and economic development at our sea ports and along our coasts. At NYPA, we have expertise in developing large-scale clean energy projects, and we are excited to have the opportunity to help Governor Cuomo realize his ambitious off-shore wind vision, one that will again position New York State as setting the high bar when it comes to renewable energy and combatting climate change."
Kevin S. Law, President & CEO of the Long Island Association, said, "Today's PSC order demonstrates a continued commitment by Governor Cuomo and the state to lead the nation in developing a clean energy economy with additional offshore wind projects off the coast of Long Island and we enthusiastically support these efforts as both good for our environment and our economy."
Joe Martens, Director of the New York State Offshore Wind Alliance, said, "New York has hit another major milestone in its quest for 50 percent renewable generation by 2030. The PSC order on offshore wind procurement sets the stage for meeting Governor Cuomo's commitment for a 2018 offshore wind solicitation and moves New York one step closer to realizing the jobs, environmental benefits and investments in ports and infrastructure that would come from New York being a national leader in offshore wind."
Kit Kennedy, Senior Director of the Climate & Clean Energy Program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said, "This is a big step forward toward capturing the enormous potential of sustainable offshore wind power in New York," said. "We look forward to helping New York become a national leader in developing this promising clean energy source in a way that's smart from the start—protecting the ocean and creating quality jobs."
Lisa Dix, Senior New York Representative for the Sierra Club said, "The Sierra Club applauds the Public Service Commission for taking the next important step to advance offshore wind. Rapidly advancing offshore wind is not only necessary to achieve the Governor's bold climate goals but is critical to making New York a renewable energy economic powerhouse, a regional hub for the industry, build new ports, and create thousands of family wage jobs for New Yorkers."
Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director of Citizens Campaign for the Environment, said, "CCE is delighted that New York will be advancing 800MW of offshore wind production. Continued and strengthening investments in offshore wind are paving a clear path forward for New York's economic and energy future. Thank you to the Governor's office for making the state of New York a leader and an example of excelsior spirit, by demonstrating that renewables are the way towards a thriving and sustainable future for our state. If we want New York to become a competitor in an ever-changing global energy economy, the time to leave old technology and fossil fuels behind us is now.
In 2016, the Public Service Commission adopted a Clean Energy Standard. The Clean Energy Standard is designed to achieve the Governor's statewide goal that 50 percent of electricity consumed in New York State will be from renewable generation resources by 2030. It is expected that the output of offshore wind represents roughly one third of the incremental electricity needed to meet this goal. Because of its proximity and direct access to areas of the State with high population densities, offshore wind will provide substantial reliability, grid resiliency and diversity benefits to the electric system. By displacing fossil-fired generation in the downstate area, it will produce significant public health benefits and also reduce the need to build transmission lines from the upstate region.