New York Gov Cuomo moves to double solar, triple offshore wind capacity targets
- Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo released new details on Tuesday about New York's ambitious commitment to reach 100% carbon-free electricity by 2040, doubling a distributed solar goal and more than tripling the state's offshore wind target.
- As part of his State of the State and Budget speech, Cuomo detailed New York's "Green New Deal," first announced in December, which includes changing the 2.4 GW of offshore wind by 2030 goal to 9 GW by 2035. The package also involves deploying 3 GW of energy storage by 2030, increasing distributed solar deployment from 3 GW by 2023 to 6 GW by 2025 and more than doubling new large-scale onshore wind and solar.
- Ultimately, the state aims to increase its Clean Energy Standard, a renewable generation mandate, from 50% to 70% by 2030.
New York's Green New Deal sets the state on a path to decarbonize its electricity sector five years ahead of California, which adopted a 100% clean energy target last fall. More states and cities are announcing initiatives aimed at reducing carbon emissions, partly due to federal inaction on climate change.
Cuomo called for investing $1.5 billion in competitive awards to support large-scale solar, wind and energy storage upstate.
In his speech, Cuomo likened the Green New Deal to a push for building "the green economy for tomorrow." State mandates and goals have increased interest in offshore wind, specifically in Northeast states with large coastal cities.
“By more than tripling New York’s already impressive offshore wind goal, Governor Cuomo has redefined offshore wind ambition nationwide,” Nancy Sopko, director of offshore wind policy and siting at the American Wind Energy Association, told Utility Dive.
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is expected to have new sites in the New York Bight available for lease this year. BOEM's primary recommendation for leasing would accommodate about 3.8 GW of offshore wind, while the primary and secondary recommendation would accommodate about 9.6 GW of capacity.
Already, Equinor is building a project in federal waters, off the coast of Long Island, that could accommodate up to 2 GW of offshore wind capacity, according to the company's website. New York recently issued an 800 MW offshore wind solicitation.
"We expect BOEM to continue to designate new wind energy areas over time and are confident that enough areas will be available to accommodate 9,000 MW or more of offshore wind," Joe Martens, director of the New York Offshore Wind Alliance, told Utility Dive via email.
BOEM's recent offshore wind leasing auction, off the coast of Massachusetts, brought in more than $405 million last December for three sites — a majority of the $473 million of revenue brought in by the offshore wind lease sales in the country so far.
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