April 18 (Renewables Now) - The Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU) has approved long-term contracts for 800 MW of offshore wind between Vineyard Wind and the Commonwealth’s electric distribution companies.
Vineyard Wind, a 50/50 partnership between Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) and Avangrid Renewables LLC, in May 2018 became the winner in Massachusetts' first offshore wind solicitation and secured the right to negotiate contracts for the construction of an up to 800-MW wind farm off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard. The proposed project involves the installation of up to 106 wind turbines, of 8 MW to 10 MW each, at water depths of 37 to 49 meters (121 to 161 feet). It is planned to become operational in 2021, producing power and renewable energy certificates (RECs) at a total levelised price of USD 0.065 (EUR 0.058) per kWh over the 20-year term of the contracts.
According to DPU, the contracts with Massachusetts’ electric distribution companies are “cost-effective as well as in the public interest.”
As per the contracts, Vineyard Wind has pledged to provide USD 15 million to a fund that will invest in projects promoting the use of energy storage in low-income communities and back the deployment of battery storage in the Commonwealth.
“The approval of these contracts is an important step toward the completion of the largest offshore wind project in the country, which will significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, provide Massachusetts residents and businesses with cost-effective clean energy and promote economic development,” said governor Charlie Baker.
(USD 1.0 = EUR 0.885)