October 24 (Renewables Now) - Governor Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday finalised contracts with the developers of close to 1,700 MW of offshore wind projects to be realised off the coast of New York.
Sunrise Wind LLC, a 50/50 joint venture between Denmark’s Ørsted A/S (CPH:ORSTED) and New England utility Eversource Energy (NYSE:ES), has signed a 25-year offshore wind renewable energy certificate (OREC) purchase-and-sale agreement with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) in relation to its 880-MW Sunrise wind project to the east of Long Island’s Montauk Point.
Ørsted said in a statement that the particular project has an average all-in development cost of USD 80.64 (EUR 72.29) per MWh in 2018 prices, with an expected average OREC cost of USD 22.62/MWh. Sunrise Wind, still subject to a final investment decision, is part of Ørsted and Eversource’s North East cluster, comprising three projects with a combined capacity of about 1,700 MW. Siemens Gamesa has been selected as the turbine supplier.
The partners hope to have Sunrise Wind up and running in 2024.
Meanwhile, Equinor ASA (NYSE:EQNR) sealed a contract for its 816-MW Empire wind project, to be built within an 80,000-acre lease in the New York Bight secured by the Norwegian energy major in December 2016. As previously announced, Equinor expects to begin construction of the facility in 2022 in order to achieve commercial operation in December 2024.
The construction of these two wind parks will bring New York closer to its goal of developing 9,000 MW of offshore wind by 2035 as part of Governor Cuomo's Green New Deal.
NYSERDA has also submitted to the New York State Department of Public Service a report that documents the results of the state’s first large-scale offshore wind solicitation. The report notes that the OREC prices resulting from the process are about 40% lower than what was projected by NYSERDA in its 2018 analysis. The average all-in development cost of the Empire Wind and Sunrise Wind projects is USD 83.36/MWh in 2018 dollars, while the expected average OREC cost stands at USD 25.14/MWh. According to the report, the average bill impact for residential customers will be USD 0.73 per month.
(USD 1.0 = EUR 0.896)