Connecticut selects 200-MW of offshore wind under solicitation

Connecticut has selected 200 megawatts of offshore wind under a recent Department of Energy and Environmental Protection request for proposals for clean energy.

The news was announced on June 13 by Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy and DEEP Commissioner Robert Klee.

The offshore wind from Deepwater Wind’s Revolution Wind Project will be incremental to the 400 MW from the same project recently selected by Rhode Island.

Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo on May 23 said that the state had selected Deepwater Wind to construct a new, 400-MW offshore wind farm.

The Revolution Wind project “was selected through a competitive offshore wind procurement process in collaboration with Massachusetts,” the Rhode Island governor’s office noted in a news release.

Other projects selected in the Connecticut solicitation include, among others, 52 MW of fuel cells and a 1.6 MW anaerobic digestion project. Anaerobic digestion is the natural process in which microorganisms break down organic matter in the absence of air. Anaerobic digestion creates usable products such as biogas, a renewable energy source, and digested material.

Selected projects will now enter negotiations with the electric distribution utilities, Eversource and United Illuminating, to reach agreement on 20-year contracts. If successful, the contracts will be brought to the Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority for final approval.

Meanwhile, in other recent offshore wind news, investor-owned utilities in Massachusetts in May selected Vineyard Wind to move forward to contract negotiations for the procurement of 800 megawatts of offshore wind energy.

Vineyard Wind was selected by electric distribution companies in Massachusetts -- Fitchburg Gas & Electric Light Company, Massachusetts Electric Company, Nantucket Electric Company, NSTAR Electric Company and Western Massachusetts Electric Company -- to move forward to contract negotiations as part of a previously authorized offshore wind energy procurement.

N.Y. PSC advances offshore wind efforts

In related news, the New York Public Service Commission on June 14 said it took another step toward meeting Governor Andrew Cuomo’s goal of procuring at least 2.4 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030 by accepting the environmental review of policy options to implement a New York State offshore wind program.

The Commission, as part of a mandatory environmental review developed under the State Environmental Quality Review Act, found a number of positive outcomes associated with the development of offshore wind, including: public health benefits, climate change benefits; and economic development benefits.

The environmental review also raised potential impacts, such as the need to consider sensitive biological resources, and mitigation measures to lessen these impacts. Those impacts will be taken into consideration by the Commission and can be addressed in site-specific environmental impact statements as project development proceeds, the PSC said.