U.S. must speed up offshore wind energy permits to hit Biden target

The United States must speed up project permits if it is to meet the Biden administration’s 2030 target for offshore wind power, major developer Orsted (ORSTED.CO) said on Thursday.

The United States, with just two small offshore wind facilities, has lagged European nations in developing the renewable energy technology. read more

The administration of President Joe Biden has set a goal to install 30 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind power capacity in U.S. waters by 2030 – nearly the amount that already exists in Europe’s two-decade old industry. Yet it can take as much as 10 years to plan and build new projects.

“To have 30 GW installed by 2030 will mean that permitting processes need to be expedited,” Orsted’s chief commercial officer and deputy CEO Martin Neubert told Reuters.

Neubert spoke a day after New Jersey regulators announced that Denmark’s Orsted and a consortium of Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) and EDF (EDF.PA) had been awarded two offshore wind farm tenders in the Northeastern state, the largest such awards in U.S. history. read more

Biden’s move towards wind power came after his predecessor, Donald Trump, threw the industry into doubt when he cancelled the first commercial-scale offshore wind farm’s permit application during his term. read more

“No doubt that the entire offshore wind industry in the U.S. has been suffering from the permitting moratorium that we have experienced over the last years,” Neubert said and welcomed efforts by the Biden administration to make amends.

“We see real actions in creating the momentum to move forward on the federal permitting side,” he added. .

Significant amounts of new seabed leases and a massive build-out of the grid were also needed in order to reach the ambitious target, Neubert said.