Deepwater Wind proposing major offshore wind-plus-storage project

A picture from Cathie Associates visit to the US’ first commercial offshore wind farm; Block Island.

December 20 (Renewables Now) - Deepwater Wind will submit tomorrow a couple of proposals for a major offshore wind park in Massachusetts that would be paired with a pumped-storage hydropower plant.

The developer will seek approval for a Phase I offshore wind farm of up to 400 MW, but will also file for a smaller 200-MW conforming project. The scheme, called Revolution Wind, will be officially submitted tomorrow in response to Massachusetts’ 83C offshore wind solicitation.

Previously, Deepwater Wind proposed an initial 144-MW phase of Revolution Wind under the state’s earlier 83D solicitation, a decision on which is expected in January 2018. The outcome of the 83C solicitation will be known in April 2018.

The project could replace the fossil fuel-fired power plants retiring across the region, the company said in a press statement today. It includes two partnerships -- one with clean energy producer FirstLight Power Resources and another with the US unit of National Grid Plc (NYSE:NGG).

FirstLight Power has agreed to pair its 1,168-MW Northfield Mountain pumped-storage facility with the planned offshore wind park to allow it to act like a baseload resource. The combination would enable energy delivery to be scheduled so that it meets peak demand on the regional electric grid. Implementing this plan would not require the installation of new transmission lines, Deepwater Wind noted.

At the same time, the company has teamed up with National Grid Ventures to develop an offshore transmission network that would not only support Revolution Wind, but future offshore wind projects as well, regardless of who the developer is. The planned transmission network would be scalable up to 1,600 MW. Its first phase will connect Revolution Wind to the Massachusetts electric grid.

Deepwater Wind plans to build the Revolution Wind park in the federal lease site southwest of Martha’s Vineyard, where the company is already conducting a survey. Construction work could start in 2022, with completion scheduled for 2023.

The company intends to install a new submarine transmission connection between the wind park and a Brayton Point substation in Somerset.

National Grid has the right to buy the completed transmission connection from Deepwater Wind.

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Ivan is the mergers and acquisitions expert in Renewables Now with a passion for big deals and ambitious capacity plans.

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