CT: Conn. Port Authority Green Lights Major Offshore Wind Hub Project
13 Feb, 2020
Connecticut recently approved a $157 million project redeveloping the State Pier in New London into a wind energy hub. Gov. Ned Lamont, joined by Eversource Energy and Danish wind power company Orsted — partners in the project — celebrated the deal approved by the Connecticut Port Authority.
Lamont said hammering out an agreement to harness offshore wind from the Atlantic Ocean using state property and dispatching the energy to the New England power grid “took us a little longer than we thought. I’m finding in this state it’s not easy getting people around to rebuilding 100-year-old infrastructure."
The first phase of construction for the heavy-lift requirements of Orsted and Eversource’s offshore wind components that will be assembled in New London and dispatched to the Atlantic Ocean will begin early next year and continue through August 2022. Permitting and site investigations have been under way since 2019 and selecting a contractor will begin later this year. About 460 construction jobs are expected to be created.
The Orsted-Eversource project will generate 704 megawatts, with 304 megawatts used in Connecticut and the remainder in Rhode Island. About 450,000 customers will be served.
Eversource and Orsted have committed $77.5 million and the remainder, $79.5 million, will be financed by the state and Port Authority in bond funding. Of that, $25.5 million has already been committed by the Port Authority. Eversource and Orsted will sign a 10-year lease at $2 million a year.
State officials have lauded the impending upgrade of the State Pier as an opportunity to move Connecticut into the top ranks of wind energy producers. “Connecticut can be the Saudi Arabia of wind power,” Lamont said.
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