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Photo shows the installation of the first offshore wind turbine at South Fork Wind

The first offshore wind turbine is installed at the South Fork Wind project offshore New York. Photo courtesy New York State

Biden Administration Unveils New Five-Year Offshore Wind Leasing Schedule

Mike Schuler
Total Views: 589
April 24, 2024

U.S. Secretary of the Interior, Deb Haaland, has announced an ambitious five-year offshore wind leasing schedule that includes up to 12 potential offshore wind energy lease sales through 2028.

The DOI’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) anticipates future offshore wind energy lease sales in the Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, Pacific, and the waters offshore of the U.S. territories over the next five years. The leasing schedule outlines four potential offshore lease sales in 2024, one each in 2025 and 2026, two in 2027, and four in 2028.

The Biden Administration’s previous plan aimed to hold up to seven new offshore wind lease sales by 2025, including in waters in the Gulf of Maine, New York Bight, Central Atlantic, and Gulf of Mexico, as well as offshore the Carolinas, California, and Oregon, as part of its goal of deploying 30 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind energy by 2030.

2024-2028 Offshore Wind Leasing Plan

The Department of the Interior, under the Biden administration, has already approved the nation’s first eight commercial scale offshore wind projects and held four offshore wind lease auctions. The Department has approved over 10 gigawatts of clean energy from offshore wind projects, which is enough to power nearly 4 million homes at full capacity.

At the International Partnering Forum conference in New Orleans, Secretary Haaland said that this new leasing schedule would support renewable energy projects needed to lower consumer costs, combat climate change, and create jobs.

“Our offshore wind leasing schedule will provide predictability to help developers and communities plan ahead and will provide the confidence needed to continue building on the tremendous offshore wind supply chain and manufacturing investments that we’ve already seen,” she said.

Similar to the previous plan new offshore wind energy leasing plan for the next five years includes sales in regions like Central Atlantic, Gulf of Maine, Gulf of Mexico, Oregon, New York Bight, California, and Hawaii.

“Routinely issuing a leasing schedule demonstrates our commitment to a long-term portfolio of leases and provides advance notice to stakeholders of the areas that are being considered for future lease sales,” said BOEM Director Elizabeth Klein.

The new offshore wind leasing plan comes as the Biden Administration has largely scaled back offshore oil and gas leases. The current 5-year plan includes just three sales, the lowest since the government began publishing the schedules in 1980.

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