Massachusetts Enters Offshore Wind Era

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed the new energy legislation which calls for development of 1,600MW of offshore wind capacity by 2027 into law on Monday, 8 August.

An Act Relative to Energy Diversity (H. 4568) requires utilities to competitively solicit and contract for approximately 2,800MW of offshore wind and hydro energy in the next decade.

“Massachusetts is always at the forefront of adopting innovative clean energy solutions, and this legislation will allow us to build on that legacy and embrace increased amounts of renewable energy, including hydropower,” said Governor Charlie Baker.

“With our partners in the Legislature, the Commonwealth has taken another major step towards providing residents and businesses with a cost-effective and reliable clean energy future.”

The legislation directs companies engaging in the distribution of electricity or owning, operating or controlling distribution facilities to jointly and competitively solicit proposals for offshore wind energy generation from offshore wind developers which will provide electricity from a project on the Outer Continental Shelf, ten miles from any inhabited area.

Distribution companies will enter into contracts for the purchase of up to 1,600MW of aggregate nameplate capacity by June 30, 2027. Individual solicitations submitted must be for no less than 400MW of aggregate nameplate capacity and must occur within a 24 month time period.

“The hydroelectric and offshore wind power generation authorized in this legislation will play a crucial role in securing clean and cost-effective energy for the Commonwealth’s ratepayers,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito.

“By utilizing renewable sources of power generation, Massachusetts will continue to lead the nation in embracing economic and environmentally friendly methods to generate electricity to meet the needs of our communities.”

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