Deepwater Wind plans to develop the 120-MW Skipjack Wind project, a new offshore wind plant near Ocean City, Maryland that could be in operation in 2022, the company said Nov. 22.
Deepwater Wind has filed an application with the Maryland Public Service Commission for approval of the Skipjack Wind Farm. If approved, local construction work could begin as early as 2020, with the project in operations in 2022.
The Skipjack Wind Farm will not only be the state’s largest renewable energy project, it would also be the right size for Maryland’s first offshore wind facility, Deepwater said. At 120 MW, Skipjack Wind could be built in a single construction season, and developed more cost-effectively, and with considerably less risk, than a larger project.
At more than 17 nautical miles northeast of Ocean City’s coastline, the project would be located so far away that it won’t affect views from Maryland’s shore. Deepwater Wind has secured the rights to acquire the site’s federal lease, subject to regulatory approval.
“We’re bringing down the cost of American offshore wind energy in a big way,” said Deepwater Wind CEO Jeffrey Grybowski. “Ratepayers in Maryland will benefit from energy that is both clean and affordable. The Skipjack Wind Farm is the right clean energy solution for Maryland, and we’re ready to get to work.”
The Skipjack Wind Farm is expected to generate well over $100m in economic benefits for Maryland. Deepwater Wind will make significant investments in the state of Maryland and employ hundreds of local workers during the project’s construction, the company said in a news release.
Deepwater Wind is America’s leading offshore wind developer and the only company to construct an offshore wind project in the United States. The company’s 30-MW Block Island Wind Farm is on schedule to begin commercial operations this winter. The company is also in the early stages of development of its South Fork Wind project, a 90-MW offshore wind facility located in federal waters 30 miles east of Montauk, New York, that is scheduled to become operational in 2022.
On Feb. 25 of this year, the Maryland PSC had commenced the Maryland Offshore Wind Project Application Period after a determination by the commission’s independent consultant that a first potential offshore wind (OSW) application had been received and deemed administratively complete. Following the close of the application period on Nov. 18, the commission’s independent consultant provided notice that two OSW project applications were received from:
- US Wind Inc., a subsidiary of Toto Holding SpA; and
- Skipjack Offshore Wind LLC, a subsidiary of Deepwater Wind Holdings LLC.
Upon a review of the applications, the commission’s independent consultant determined that both projects were found to be administratively complete. The commission in a Nov. 22 order officially commenced a review docket for the applications. Both applicants were directed to file the public and confidential versions of their OSW project applications in this docket by Nov. 30. A prehearing conference in this matter was set for Dec. 14. Petitions to intervene need to be filed by Dec. 12.