New Jersey to Offer Up to 4 GW in Next Offshore Wind Auction Round

The State of New Jersey plans to put up for auction up to 4,000 MW of offshore wind capacity in its third solicitation round scheduled to start in the first quarter of 2023.

The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities has now issued the draft solicitation guidance document (SGD) for the third solicitation.

The release of the draft SGD will provide for stakeholder engagement on the design of the state’s third solicitation and provides information necessary to enable potential bidders to assess the rules and requirements of the forthcoming solicitation, NJBPU said.

There are several new requirements proposed in this solicitation, notably: setting the solicitation target range from 1,200 MW to 4,000 MW; offering an inflation adjustment mechanism; providing specific direction on New Jersey’s requirements for new or expanded supply chain facilities; providing minimum standards for the environmental and fisheries protection plans; setting the evaluation criteria weighting to 70 per cent price and 30 per cent non-price factors; and incorporating necessary information resulting from the Board’s historic state agreement approach transmission decision in October.

The draft SGD also includes an updated offshore wind solicitation schedule. The new schedule reflects the state’s expanded goal of 11 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2040, set by Governor Phil Murphy earlier this year, the Board said.

Source: NJBPU

The winner or winners in the third solicitation round will be selected in the fourth quarter of 2023. The project or projects selected are expected to come online by 2030.

The new solicitation schedule is said to provide developers and the offshore wind supply chain with certainty on the state’s plan to reach its offshore wind goal and spur increased investment in New Jersey’s offshore wind industry.

”I am pleased to announce the release of our Third Solicitation draft guidance document and the new offshore wind solicitation schedule for reaching Governor Murphy’s expanded goal of 11 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2040,” said NJBPU President Joseph L. Fiordaliso.

”As we move toward a clean energy future it is vital that we fulfill the promise of offshore wind in combatting climate change and providing good paying jobs while continuing to provide a reliable schedule for achieving our ambitious goals.”

A virtual public stakeholder meeting is scheduled for 13 December to review the solicitation requirements and receive public comment. Written comments will be accepted until 29 December.

In 2019, New Jersey awarded the largest single offshore wind project in the country to Ørsted’s 1.1 GW Ocean Wind project to be built 15 miles off the coast of Atlantic City. In 2021, the second solicitation resulted in the largest combined award of 2.6 GW of offshore wind capacity to EDF/Shell’s Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind and Ørsted’s Ocean Wind II projects. To date, the Board has awarded a total of 3.7 GW of offshore wind capacity.

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