New York Gives All Clear to Sunrise Wind Transmission Line

The New York State Public Service Commission has approved a transmission line that will deliver electricity from the Sunrise Wind farm off the coast of Long Island, to the existing electrical grid in New York State.

The 25-mile offshore/onshore transmission line will carry electricity from the wind farm to an existing substation in Brookhaven, Suffolk County.

“New York is taking bold action to address the climate crisis, and projects like Sunrise Wind demonstrate our leadership on clean energy,” Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State, said.

”As we work to advance our nation-leading climate goals and create the jobs of the future, offshore wind projects will be critical to deliver clean energy to all New Yorkers.”

At 924 MW, the proposed Sunrise Wind farm located in federal waters is the largest offshore wind farm yet that would be connected to New York’s electric grid.

The wind farm project, which has the potential capacity to power nearly 600,000 homes, is being developed as a partnership between Ørsted and Eversource, with support from Con Edison Transmission and the New York Power Authority, who will assist the development of the transmission facilities needed to deliver the offshore wind energy to the electric transmission grid.

The developers expect the offshore wind farm will be fully operational by 2025, resulting in a direct investment of more than USD 408 million in New York and the creation of 800 direct jobs in New York State, plus thousands of indirect jobs.

The transmission line approved by the Commission today is being built by Sunrise Wind, LLC. Additionally, Sunrise Wind is entering negotiations with New York State contractors and trade labor organizations on a project labor agreement to cover construction activities for the project, and committing to paying prevailing wages.

”Offshore projects like Sunrise will play a key role in developing clean-energy for New York State and will help New York achieve its nation-leading renewable energy goals,” New York State Public Service Commission Chair Rory M. Christian said.

”Our decision today protects the public interest and ensures any potential significant negative impacts of the transmission project are avoided or minimized. Today’s Sunrise decision is a win for Long Island, and a win for all New Yorkers because it represents another step in the transition to cleaner energy and will create jobs and opportunities for individuals and industries.”

The approved transmission project includes a high-voltage, 320-kV, DC submarine export cable bundle up to 5.2 miles long that will enter New York State territorial waters three nautical miles from land. The transmission line will then transition from an offshore cable to an onshore cable that will travel up to 17.2 miles to an onshore converter station.

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The adopted joint proposal was unopposed by any party and was signed by Sunrise Wind, LLC, Department of Public Service Staff, Department of Environmental Conservation, Department of Agriculture and Markets, Department of State, Department of Transportation, and the Long Island Commercial Fishing Association. The next step in the process includes Commission approval of the transmission project’s environmental management and construction plan prior to construction.

New York State selected Sunrise Wind, located more than 30 miles east of Montauk Point, as part of NYSERDA’s inaugural competitive 2018 offshore wind solicitation.

Construction is anticipated to start as early as 2023, with the wind farm expected to be fully operational in 2025.

Today’s announcement supports the development of New York State’s offshore wind project pipeline, which currently has five projects in active development, the largest portfolio in the nation.

This initial portfolio totals more than 4,300 MW, will power more than 2.4 million New York homes, and is expected to bring a combined economic impact of USD 12.1 billion to the state.

In February, Governor Hochul marked the start of construction for South Fork Wind, which will become operational in late 2023 and is expected to eliminate up to six million tons of carbon emissions, or the equivalent of taking 60,000 cars off the road annually.

Combined, the five projects are expected to create more than 6,800 jobs in project development, component manufacturing, installation, and operations and maintenance. Governor Hochul also announced in October the successful land transfer to bring a National Offshore Wind Training Center to New York.

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Photo: For illustrative purposes only. Source: Ørsted