The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) in the US said Tuesday it will work with the State of California to establish an offshore renewables task force.
In response to a request by California governor Jerry Brown, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell has directed BOEM to make the move. It and the state are initiating planning for the establishment of an Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force to examine offshore renewable energy development opportunities along the California coast.
Early this year, the BOEM received a lease request for an up-to-800-MW floating wind project offshore Morro Bay from Trident Winds LLC.
“There are significant offshore resources along most of California’s coast that complement the profile of onshore solar resources, and new developments in offshore wind technology – such as larger facilities that are not visible from land and present little to no adverse avian impacts – will likely make projects more viable,” Jerry Brown said earlier this month in a letter to Jewell.
Already, offshore renewables task forces have been created in 13 other states. In general, the role of such non-decisional entities is to facilitate coordination and communication between BOEM and state, local, and tribal governments and federal agencies as regards to potential renewable energy leasing for research or commercial activities.
The areas off the west coast of the US have the potential to generate more than 1.5 TWh of offshore wind power, according to a study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
Non-hydro renewables accounted for 18% of the total supply to the California Independent System Operator's (ISO) grid in 2015, marking an increase of two percentage points from 2014.
Choose your newsletter by Renewables Now. Join for free!