Maryland becomes an offshore wind power contender with OREC decision

Maryland’s Public Service Commission today awarded offshore wind renewable energy credits (ORECs) to the companies US Wind and Skipjack Offshore Energy, LLC to build wind projects totaling 368 megawatts (MW) of capacity miles off the state’s coast. Completing these projects will generate nearly 10,000 new direct and indirect jobs and $1.8 billion of in-state spending.

“This fully brings the Mid-Atlantic into the game,” said Andrew Gohn, Eastern Region Director, for the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA). “Maryland’s decision to award these ORECs is a big win for American job seekers, manufacturing, and energy security.”

Conditions to the OREC approval include a requirement that these companies invest at least $76 million in Maryland steel-making and a further $39.6 million in upgraded infrastructure at the Tradepoint Atlantic shipyard.

America’s first offshore wind project came online late last year in waters off Block Island, Rhode Island. The Block Island Wind Project, a pilot project, has a total capacity of 30 MW. Growing offshore wind to scale will help attract new manufacturing and investment to states like Maryland that have business-friendly policies.