The Empire Wind 1 and 2 and Beacon Wind 1 projects located off New York State. Illustration: Equinor

The Empire Wind 1 and 2 and Beacon Wind 1 projects located off New York State. Illustration: Equinor

BOEM Completes Environmental Review of Offshore Wind Project Off New York

Mike Schuler
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September 11, 2023

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has completed its environmental review of the proposed Empire Wind offshore wind projects off New York, which BOEM estimates could power more than 700,000 homes with clean renewable energy.

“BOEM is doing its part to meet the Administration’s ambitious energy goals – while remaining diligent in our efforts to avoid, minimize, and mitigate impacts to ocean users and the marine environment,” said BOEM Director Elizabeth Klein. “We value the feedback we have received from Tribal Nations, local community members, commercial fishing interests, and other ocean users in our process.”

Empire Wind LLC is a 50-50 partnership between Equinor and bp, with Equinor serving as the operator throughout the development, construction, and operations phases. The company plans to build two offshore wind projects, Empire Wind 1 and Empire Wind 2, in its lease area located approximately 12 nautical miles (nm) south of Long Island, New York, and around 16.9 nm east of Long Branch, New Jersey.

The projects will include the construction of up to 147 wind turbines, along with up to two offshore substations and two cable routes connecting to the onshore electrical grid on Long Island. The projects will be electrically isolated and independent from one another. Together, they are expected to generate up to 2,076 megawatts of clean, renewable energy.

“The Empire Wind projects will help grow a domestic offshore wind supply chain through domestic investment that will create thousands of good-paying American jobs and spearhead the revitalization of the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal,” said Josh Kaplowitz, Vice President for Offshore Wind at the American Clean Power Association (ACP). “This FEIS is the culmination of years of rigorous environmental reviews and the incorporation of extensive feedback from the public and is a testament to the offshore wind industry’s ability to meet our nation’s growing energy needs in a responsible manner.”

The completion of the environmental review comes as the U.S. offshore wind industry is facing major headwinds from rising costs, high interest rates, and insufficient subsidies from the U.S. government.

As part of Biden-Harris administration’s goal of deploying 30 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2030, BOEM expects to complete environmental reviews for at least 16 commercial construction and operation plans (COP) for offshore wind energy facilities by 2025, which would represent more than 22 GW of clean energy for the nation.

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