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NJ Gov. Murphy expedites offshore wind solicitation following setback

Nov 30, 2023

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New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy remains undeterred in his pursuit of offshore wind development despite the recent withdrawal of two major projects by Ørsted. In a statement issued Wednesday, Nov. 29, Murphy announced that he has directed the state’s Board of Public Utilities to open the state’s fourth offshore wind solicitation in early 2024, inviting developers to submit project proposals.

“I have directed the BPU to take this action in recognition of the strong future of New Jersey’s offshore wind industry,” Murphy said in the statement. “New Jersey can – and will – continue to remain a burgeoning offshore wind development hub that attracts new projects and their accompanying economic and environmental benefits for generations to come.”

New Jersey has continued to push toward its goal of achieving a 100% clean energy economy by 2035, with offshore wind playing a crucial role.

However, the offshore wind industry has faced its share of challenges in recent months. Ørsted’s decision to cancel its two New Jersey projects was attributed to a combination of factors, including rising interest rates, supply chain disruptions, and difficulties in securing tax credits.

“We came in hot, we came in fast, we thought we could build projects that were inexpensive, large projects right out of the gate,” Group Executive Vice President and CEO of the Americas Region at Ørsted David Hardy said at an American Clean Power conference in October. “And it turns out that we probably still need to go through the same learning curve that Europe did, with higher prices in the beginning and a little slower pace.”

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NEW JERSEY GOVERNOR PHIL MURPHY IS NOT GIVING UP ON OFFSHORE WIND.

EVEN AFTER ORSTED PULLED OUT OF TWO MAJOR PROJECTS JUST LAST MONTH.

NOW, HE’S LOOKING FOR NEW BIDS, SOONER THAN EXPECTED. IN A STATEMENT WEDNESDAY, MURPHY ANNOUNCED HE DIRECTED THE BOARD OF PUBLIC UTILITIES TO OPEN THE STATE’S FOURTH OFFSHORE WIND SOLICITATION IN EARLY 2024.

DEVELOPERS WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO SUBMIT THEIR PROJECT PROPOSALS.

MURPHY SAID: ““NEW JERSEY CAN – AND WILL – CONTINUE TO REMAIN A BURGEONING OFFSHORE WIND DEVELOPMENT HUB THAT ATTRACTS NEW PROJECTS AND THEIR ACCOMPANYING ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS FOR GENERATIONS TO COME.”

NEW JERSEY CONTINUES TO STRIVE FOR A 100% CLEAN ENERGY ECONOMY BY 2035.

BUT THE OFFSHORE WIND INDUSTRY HAS FACED FINANCIAL HURDLES IN RECENT MONTHS.

ORSTED, THE DANISH ENERGY COMPANY THAT CANCELED ITS TWO PROJECTS IN NEW JERSEY, CITED INCREASED INTEREST RATES, SUPPLY CHAIN ISSUES AND A FAILURE TO OBTAIN CERTAIN TAX BREAKS.

GROUP EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE AMERICAS REGION AT ORSTED, DAVID HARDY, SPOKE AT AN AMERICAN CLEAN POWER CONFERENCE IN OCTOBER.

HE SAID: “WE CAME IN HOT, WE CAME IN FAST, WE THOUGHT WE COULD BUILD PROJECTS THAT WERE INEXPENSIVE, LARGE PROJECTS RIGHT OUT OF THE GATE. AND IT TURNS OUT THAT WE PROBABLY STILL NEED TO GO THROUGH THE SAME LEARNING CURVE THAT EUROPE DID, WITH HIGHER PRICES IN THE BEGINNING AND A LITTLE SLOWER PACE.”

CURRENTLY, NEW JERSEY HAS ONE OFFSHORE WIND PROJECT MOVING FORWARD–IT’S CALLED ATLANTIC SHORES, AND ACCORDING TO ITS WEBSITE, THE PROJECT WILL POWER MORE THAN 700,000 HOMES. ATLANTIC SHORES IS OWNED BY SHELL AND EDF RENEWABLES.