USA: AWC Gathering Political Support for NJ Link
The Atlantic Wind Connection (AWC) developers are gathering political support for the New Jersey part of the project, the first offshore backbone electricity transmission system proposed in the United States, which would link the offshore wind generators to the mainland via subsea cables.
Although the developers are presenting the New Jersey link as a cost-effective solution that will put the state in the center of the U.S. offshore wind industry, energy companies are sceptical about the project’s costs, which would burden the consumers, Philly.com news site informs.
“Any state that makes a commitment to offshore wind, the first mover is going to have advantages,” CEO of Trans-Elect Development Company, a transmission-line business behind the project, Robert L. Mitchell, is cited by the news site as saying.
On the other hand, Public Service Enterprise Group is said to prefer building its own links directly to the mainland and doubts the Atlantic Wind Connection’s commitment to wind energy in all this, Philly.com quotes the company’s spokesman Michael Jennings.
The Atlantic Wind Connection backbone transmission project is led by transmission company Trans-Elect with Atlantic Grid Development as the project developer and Google, Bregal Energy, Marubeni Corporation and Elia as sponsors.
The New Jersey Energy Link will be an offshore electrical transmission cable, buried under the ocean, linking energy resources and users in northern, central and southern New Jersey. The cable will span the length of New Jersey and when completed could carry 3,000MW of electricity.
The link is expected to be built in three phases over a decade. Construction would begin in 2016 and the first phase to be in service in 2019.
Offshore WIND Staff, January 30, 2013; Image: atlanticwindconnection