Rhode Island Offshore Wind Farm Advances Through Federal Permitting System

The US Bureau of Ocean Energy and Management (BOEM) has issued the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the Revolution Wind project offshore Rhode Island, developed by Ørsted and Eversource.

The Notice of Availability for the Revolution Wind environmental analysis will be published in the Federal Register on 2 September, opening a 45-day public comment period. The input received via this process will inform preparation of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), BOEM said.

After receiving the DEIS, Revolution Wind said this was an important milestone in the ongoing federal permitting process.

“This critical project is now one step closer to delivering enough clean, renewable energy to power hundreds of thousands of homes throughout the region and playing a key role in helping both Rhode Island and Connecticut meet their ambitious clean energy goals”, Revolution Wind said in a statement.

“As we review the draft findings, we would like to thank the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management for its comprehensive and diligent review. As always, Revolution Wind remains committed to working with our community and environmental partners to ensure that the project is built responsibly and sustainably. In the weeks to come, we look forward to hearing directly from residents and stakeholders as the review process continues”.

The DEIS analyses the potential environmental impacts of the project as described in its Construction and Operation Plan (COP) and several alternatives to the proposed action.

According to BOEM, which started the project’s environmental review in Spring 2021, Revolution Wind proposes installing up to 100 wind turbines approximately 15 nautical miles southeast of Point Judith, Rhode Island, making up for a wind farm of a capacity between 704 MW and 880 MW.

In October last year, Ørsted and Eversource placed a firm order with Siemens Gamesa for two of their joint projects: South Fork in New York and Revolution Wind in Rhode Island.

Under the agreement, Siemens Gamesa will supply, deliver and install a total of 77 of its 11 MW wind turbines, of which 65 are planned to be installed on Revolution Wind, totalling 715 MW.

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Revolution Wind has three power purchase agreements in place, signed in 2019, for a total of 704 MW of the project’s capacity: two contracts with the State of Connecticut totalling 304 MW and a 400 MW contract with the State of Rhode Island.

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Photo: Ørsted/Illustration