Renewable energy in the United States continues to grow, despite policies pursued by President Donald Trump to promote energy in fossil fuels. Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York State, announced in mid-July the results of the largest tender for offshore wind energy projects in US history. Three projects will be implemented: The total installed capacity of the three projects (Sunrise Wind, South Fork and Revolution Wind) will be 1,714 MW. It is expected that the implementation of these projects will provide electricity to more than a million households and create more than 1,600 jobs needed for the construction and operation of wind energy facilities.
The New York State Energy Research and Development Agency (NYSERDA) issued a project certificate from Sunrise Wind (880 MW) to the consortium of the same name, which includes Danish energy giant Ørsted, the world leader in offshore wind energy projects, and Eversource, the largest energy company in the northeastern United States. The wind farm will be located 50 kilometers east of Montauk Point, Long Island, close to other Ørsted projects – South Fork (704 MW) and Revolution Wind (130 MW).
Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy (SGRE) will supply turbines for offshore projects in the New York State. The consortium has already made a record order for turbines from the company. An agreement signed with SGRE provides for the delivery and installation of turbines, as well as subsequent after-sales service. Implementation of the Revolution Wind project is expected by 2023: it will deliver power to Rhode Island and Connecticut. The South Fork project will be put into operation at the end of 2022 and will deliver power to Long Island Power Authority.
The construction of these facilities will bring economic development by constructing an 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. Subject to contract signing and Ørsted’s and Eversource’s final investment decision, the wind farm is expected to be operational in 2024.
Ørsted projects in the New York State are part of the ambitious strategy adopted by this state and supported by its governor, according to which 70% of the energy used by the state should be generated by renewable energy by 2030. By 2035, the total installed capacity of “green” energy in the state should be 9 GW. And already in 2040, 100% of the state’s electricity should be generated through renewable sources. At the same time, the authorities of the state and the city of New York have contradictions regarding their views on the energy future of their territories.
According to the mayor of New York, Bill De Blasio, it will be more appropriate to purchase energy generated by hydroelectric power in Canada, instead of using offshore energy resources. State authorities urge the mayor to use local American products, which will lead to an increase in the number of jobs in the state and the development of the local economy.
The development of wind energy in the New York State, and in the northeastern states of the United States in general, is contrary to current government policies in this regard promoted by the Trump administration. The president refused US participation in the Paris Agreement, and also approved subsidies for coal and nuclear power plants, which faced serious competition from developing alternative energy and cheaper natural gas-based electricity generating facilities.
However, the policy of government intervention in market competition and support for obsolete and more environmentally hazardous forms of electricity generation is strongly criticized by activists. Furthermore, despite all the barriers being created, renewable energy in the United States continues to develop rapidly, with large-scale offshore projects in New York State being another confirmation of this.