North Carolina Launches Offshore Wind Study

The North Carolina Department of Commerce has launched a comprehensive project to assess the state’s supply chain and physical infrastructure best positioned to promote local offshore wind development.

The supply chain and infrastructure assessment will identify strengths and opportunities to prepare North Carolina to serve the needs of the wind energy industry. 

The study will also identify new opportunities to both develop commercial-grade wind energy off the state’s coast, as well as supply wind energy facilities along the entire eastern seaboard.

To produce the supply chain report, the North Carolina Office of Science, Technology, & Innovation recently issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) seeking a consulting partner to help develop and publish the study. 

Responses are due by 22 June, with a contract award expected shortly after. The report is expected to be published later this year.

“Our state enjoys one of the east coast’s strongest natural resources for utility-scale wind energy, and our heritage in manufacturing guarantees we can provide the trained workforce to support this growing sector of the nation’s economy,” said North Carolina Department of Commerce Secretary Anthony M. Copeland.

In October 2018, Governor Roy Cooper signed Executive Order 80 to reaffirm North Carolina’s commitment to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions and support the expansion of clean energy businesses. 

Last year, Cooper announced a USD 300,000 study to evaluate state-owned and privately held ports with the potential to host offshore wind operations, maintenance, or wind component and assembly manufacturing facilities.

Avangrid Renewables is currently developing the Kitty Hawk project at what is the first offshore wind lease area to be secured off North Carolina. The area has a potential generating capacity of 2.5 GW.