A request for renewable energy proposals by the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has yielded three bids for generating power with offshore wind farms.
The deadline for submitting the renewable energy proposals to DEEP was Monday. DEEP officials received a total of 27 bids, according to agency spokesman Chris Collibee.
In addition to three proposals involving offshore wind farms, there were 20 involving fuel cells and four that would use anaerobic digestion, which processes plant materials into methane gas for heating and power, Collibee said.
One of the three offshore wind power proposals is a joint venture between Eversource Energy and Orsted, a Danish company, that was announced before the deadline. The wind farm the joint venture partners are proposing would produce 200 megawatts of electricity in federal water 65 miles off the coast of New London.
Two other offshore wind projects were revealed publicly Tuesday. One is proposed by Providence, R.I.-based Deepwater Wind, which launched the nation’s first commercial offshore wind farm off Block Island at the start of 2017 and the other is coming from Vineyard Wind, a New Bedford, Mass. company.
Details on the Vineyard Wind proposal submitted to DEEP weren’t immediately available Tuesday. But the Vineyard Wind project, which is scheduled to begin construction some time in 2019, calls for building an 800-megawatt offshore wind project in a 160,000-acre area 14 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard.
The Deepwater Wind submission to DEEP calls for 200-megawatts from the company from its Revolution Wind project to Connecticut. The Revolution Wind project is located in federal waters roughly halfway between Montauk, N.Y. and Martha’s Vineyard, Mass. Deepwater Wind has a pending proposal before Massachusetts officials to supply energy from Revolution Wind to that state as well.
“We’re ready to put Connecticut on the map when it comes to offshore wind,” Jeffrey Grybowski, Deepwater Wind’s chief executive officer, said in a statement. “We’re the best fit to help make Connecticut’s renewable energy goals a reality.”
Revolution Wind Connecticut could be developed as a stand-alone project or as an expansion of what is being proposed to serve Massachusetts, depending upon the outcome of the two state’s procurement efforts.
Part of the Deepwater Wind proposal also calls for an optional energy storage component, in which power generated by the Revolution Wind project could be stored and delivered during periods of peak electricity consumption.
If approved, construction work on the Revolution Wind project would begin in 2022 and it would go into operation by 2023, according to Deepwater Wind officials.
The off-shore wind farms have the support of Connecticut labor leaders as well as the chairman of the state Port Authority.
“Wind energy has the potential to help power Connecticut’s maritime economy,” said Scott Bates, the Authority’s chairman. “This is an industry that is custom designed to leverage our deepwater ports. Connecticut is uniquely positioned geographically and logistically to support development of off-shore wind projects from southern New England to the mid-Atlantic states.”
Sean Daly, the business manager of International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 90, in Wallingford, said the union’s skilled electricians have already installed grid-scale solar projects in the state, as well as the two wind turbines in Colebrook.
“Now we are ready to help bring this new source of clean energy to Connecticut,” Daly said in a statement. “This development will be good for our workers and their families, and it will be good for our communities.”
Keith Brothers, president of the New London-Norwich Building and Construction Trades Council, said the building trades workforce in the region “is eager to do whatever is needed to support this growing industry.”
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