Two Massachusetts Offshore Wind Projects Postponed by One Year

Avangrid Renewables, the US-based company owned by Spain’s Iberdrola, is postponing the expected start of commercial operation of the Park City Wind and Commonwealth Wind offshore wind projects in Massachusetts to 2027 and 2028, respectively.

In its Q3 results, Iberdrola cites mitigating potential supply chain bottlenecks and high commodity prices as the reason behind the postponement, which is said to be part of Avangrid’s strategic plan.

Park City Wind, an 804 MW project which will deliver clean electricity to Connecticut, was planned to be built and commissioned in 2026. This was still referred to as the commissioning date in May when Avangrid Renewables entered into a Host Community Agreement with the Town of Barnstable for the offshore wind farm.

However, the company reportedly first announced the date changes last month.

The new date for the commercial operation of the 1,232 MW Commonwealth Wind offshore wind project was mentioned a few days ago, when Avangrid said it had filed a motion with the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU) to suspend the review of the Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) for one month.

In a press release on this matter, the company said that the motion was filed in response to the unprecedented economic challenges facing all major infrastructure projects, including historic price increases for global commodities, sharp and sudden increases in interest rates, prolonged supply chain constraints, and persistent inflation.

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Based on this, Avangrid deemed that under the current PPAs the Commonwealth Wind project was no longer viable and would not be able to move forward, and that a one-month suspension would enable the parties to consider potential approaches to restore the project’s viability.

Both offshore wind projects, located in the vicinity of the Vineyard Wind 1 offshore wind farm, are currently undergoing federal permitting process.

Park City Wind would be built immediately southwest of Vineyard Wind 1, which is now under construction, while Commonwealth Wind is located in the remainder of the southern part of the lease area. 

Avangrid Renewables took over the lease rights for the two offshore wind projects in 2021, as the company and its partner Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) restructured their 50/50 joint venture in the United States, which owned several offshore wind projects with a combined capacity of 5.3 GW.

The 800 MW Vineyard Wind 1 project, America’s first large-scale offshore wind farm, remains a 50/50 joint venture between the companies, while Avangrid Renewables took full ownership of the lease area OCS-A 0534.

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