- Dominion Energy’s Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind, or CVOW, project is set to begin construction after receiving final approvals from the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, clearing the way for an estimated late 2026 completion, the utility said Tuesday.
- The 2.6-GW project is the largest offshore wind facility planned so far in the U.S., and the site already contains a completed pilot project with two installed turbines providing 12 MW of capacity.
- However, Dominion still has to secure a Clean Air Act Outer Continental Shelf permit from the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate air pollutants from construction and operation of the farm.
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has given its final approval to CVOW’s construction and operations plan, while the Army Corps of Engineers gave it a permit for impacts to U.S. waters, including the route of an electric transmission line to connect the project to the grid, Dominion said.
The EPA announced Tuesday that it is now taking public comments on a draft air quality permit for the CVOW project, with the comment period closing Feb. 28.
EPA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Adam Ortiz said in a release that the completed project will make “significant contributions” to the Biden administration’s goal of generating 30 GW of offshore wind in the U.S. by 2030, but noted that EPA “plays a significant role in safeguarding our environment while enabling clean energy initiatives that build a sustainable future for the Mid-Atlantic Region.”
The draft permit also includes air emission standards for vessels used to construct and support the project when those vessels are within 25 nautical miles of the center of the project. Dominion is currently working to construct the first Jones Act-compliant offshore wind installation vessel, and expects to complete construction on it late this year or in early 2025.
Once completed, CVOW will have up to 176 turbines operating about 30 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach, generating a total of around 2,640 MW.
“The progress on this project to date speaks volumes about the level of cooperation between the Biden administration, the Commonwealth of Virginia, and Dominion Energy, and their commitment to the future of green energy in the Commonwealth,” Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, along with Rep. Bobby Scott — all Democrats from Virginia — said in a joint statement released by Dominion. “We look forward to continuing to work together to see this project through to the finish line.”