April 13 (Renewables Now) - New Jersey legislators have okayed a bill that, if passed into law, would give another chance for approval to a much-delayed 24-MW demonstration wind project off the US East Coast by Fishermen’s Energy LLC.
As of Thursday, Bill S-1217 has passed both houses of the state Legislature and will be now reviewed by governor Phil Murphy. A positive decision will direct the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to accept applications for an offshore wind project near Atlantic City of up to six turbines and make a final determination within 90 days.
The Legislature passed similar bills twice in the past but both were vetoed by former governor Chris Christie.
The pilot project has been fully developed and will be sited in state waters near the coast of Atlantic City in New Jersey. The scheme was amended in 2015 to include six 4-MW Siemens wind turbines instead of the previously planned five 5-MW turbines made by China’s XEMC. Fishermen’s original plan failed to win court clearance after being rejected by New Jersey’s BPU due to concerns over the feasibility of the project.
Just last week, French group EDF Renewable Energy reached a preliminary agreement to buy the 24-MW project. The buyer and Fishermen’s Energy will work to secure BPU approval and financing under New Jersey’s offshore wind renewable energy certificate (OREC) mechanism, Paul Gallagher, Fishermen’s Energy chief operating officer, was cited as saying.