United States

United States

US government signs Deepwater offshore lease

UNITED STATES: US interior secretary Sally Jewell held a lease signing ceremony to commemorate America's first ever competitive lease sale for renewable energy in federal waters.

US interior secretary Sally Jewell (centre) holds lease signing ceremony (Picture credit: Tami Heilemann)
US interior secretary Sally Jewell (centre) holds lease signing ceremony (Picture credit: Tami Heilemann)

Deepwater Wind won the US's first offshore wind competitive lease auction, bidding $3.8 million for the rights to develop off the coast of Rhode Island and Massachusetts, last month.

The company plans to develop the Deepwater Wind Energy Centre, which has a planned capacity of up to 1GW. Construction could begin as early as 2017, with commercial operations by 2018.

The event included Deepwater Wind CEO Jeff Grybowski, the director and staff from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and Rhode Island senator, Sheldon Whitehouse.

"This is an enormous step forward for the industry. This is the best site for offshore wind in the United States, bar none," said Grybowski.

Of the nine companies that met the financial and technical qualifications to participate, only three showed up on auction day. Deepwater beat Sea Breeze Energy and US Wind Inc. in 11 rounds of bidding. Energy Management Inc., EDF, Fishermen's Energy, Iberdrola, Mainstream and Neptune Wind did not participate.

Earlier this year Deepwater criticised the auction process for offshore leases on the Atlantic coast as 'fatally flawed'.

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