US govt to ease offshore wind regulations to back climate goals
A picture from Cathie Associates visit to the US’ first commercial offshore wind farm; Block Island.
The US Department of the Interior (DOI) on Thursday laid out a proposal for streamlining existing regulations for offshore wind deployment in the US Outer Continental Shelf in order to enhance the country’s ability to meet its climate goals.
The proposed set of rules will aim to update current regulations and thus save developers some USD 1 billion (EUR 932.9m) over a 20-year period, DOI estimates. Specifically, it envisages streamlining burdensome processes, clarifying ambiguous provisions and lowering compliance costs by removing some requirements for the installation of meteorological buoys.
Enhancing the installation verification and technical correction processes is also part of the plan, together with reforms in the regulations for renewable energy auctions.
“Updating these regulations will facilitate the safe and efficient development of offshore wind energy resources, provide certainty to developers and help ensure a fair return to the US taxpayers,” said Interior Secretary Deb Haaland.
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has so far carried out 11 wind lease auctions and manages 27 active commercial leases. The latest competition was closed in December 2022, when winners were announced for two sites off northern California.
Up to four wind lease sales are due to be held by 2025 in support of the country’s goal of deploying 30 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2030.
Veselina Petrova is one of Renewables Now's most experienced green energy writers. For several years she has been keeping track of game-changing events both large and small projects and across the globe.