Cuomo’s Offshore Wind Power Master Plan

Governor Andrew Cuomo today released the state’s offshore wind master plan, which is designed to guide the development of 2.4 gigawatts by 2030, and $15 million to train people in related jobs.

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority said it was designed to guide the “responsible and cost-effective development” of enough power for up to 1.2 million homes.

Long Island Association CEO Kevin Law said his group had hosted the first open house for Governor Cuomo’s Offshore Wind Master Plan last year “to help create new clean energy jobs and spur economic growth, and thus we applaud the Governor for releasing NYSERDA’s plan today.”

Cuomo in his 2018 State of the State said the state will issue solicitations in 2018 and in 2019 for at least 800 megawatts of offshore wind power.

Cuomo has set a goal of generating 50 percent of the state’s electricity needs from renewable energy sources by 2030.

He today also set the state would set aside $15 million to train workers to build offshore wind and develop port infrastructure.

“New York is doubling down on our commitment to renewable energy and the industries of tomorrow,” Cuomo said in a written statement.

He said the state hoped to help generate this “increasingly affordable clean energy source that creates good paying jobs while protecting Long Island’s natural beauty and quality of life.”

“The New York Offshore Wind Master Plan is an unprecedented, nation-leading effort that lays the foundation right here in New York for a new American industry,” New York State Offshore Wind Alliance Director Joe Martens said in a written statement.

Others said the plan is a major step in going from discussion to action, by creating a process that should lead to projects.

“Offshore wind developers are ready to help New York meet the Governor’s goals, and are particularly interested in when and how they can compete for contracts and invest in New York,” Anne Reynolds, executive director of the Alliance for Clean Energy New York, said. “The Offshore Wind Policy Options Paper lays out these procurement options. Nailing down these procurement details needs to be New York’s next step.”

NYSERDA also filed paperwork outlining a process, problems and potential benefits of least 800 megawatts of offshore wind power.

“Perhaps the foremost challenge to offshore wind development is cost,” NYSERDA wrote in a paper analyzing offshore wind.

The agency, however, said projects could achieve “long-term cost reductions to enable cost-effective future deployment of offshore wind energy.”

NYSERDA said “the relative cost of the first offshore wind projects in the U.S. is still projected to be higher than that of typical land-based projects.”

But the agency added that “the offshore wind sector has experienced dramatic cost reductions over the past few years in Europe — to the point where in many cases the technology is cost-competitive with land-based renewables projects.”