US Jumpstarts Offshore Wind, Targets 30 GW by 2030

US | 2021-03-30

US Jumpstarts Offshore Wind, Targets 30 GW by 2030

The U.S. has set a national target for 30 GW of installed offshore wind capacity by 2030 as a centerpiece of a newly introduced plan by the Biden Administration to jumpstart offshore wind energy and create tens of thousands of jobs in the sector over the next decade.

The ambitious offshore wind target will support around 77,000 direct and indirect jobs and trigger more than USD 12 billion in capital investment per year in projects on both U.S. coasts. More than 44,000 people are expected to be employed in offshore wind by 2030, with nearly 33,000 additional jobs in communities supported by offshore wind activity.

The 2030 target would also unlock a pathway to deploy 110 GW or more of offshore wind capacity by 2050, which would support a total of 135,000 jobs by that time: 77,000 in offshore wind and 58,000 additional jobs in communities created around offshore wind activity.

Concrete Steps and Supply Chain Investments:

To achieve this goal, which builds on U.S. President Joe Biden’s Executive Order signed in January, the Department of Interior’s (DOE) Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) plans to advance new lease sales and complete review of at least 16 Construction and Operations Plans (COPs) by 2025, representing more than 19 GW of offshore wind capacity to be installed off the U.S. coasts.

Furthermore, DOE’s Loan Programs Office (LPO) released a fact sheet to facilitate access for up to USD 3 billion in funding through LPO’s Title 17 Innovative Energy Loan Guarantee Program. LPO is open for business and ready to partner with offshore wind and offshore transmission developers, suppliers, and other financing partners. To date, LPO has provided USD 1.6 billion in support of projects totaling about 1,000 MW of onshore wind.

The 30 GW target will also catalyse significant investments to strengthen the domestic supply chain. This includes port upgrades totaling more than USD 500 million, one to two new U.S. factories for each major wind farm component including wind turbine nacelles, blades, towers, foundations, and subsea cables. There will also be an additional cumulative demand for more than 7 million tonnes of steel, which is equivalent to a four-year output for a typical U.S. steel mill.

The supply chain investments will also involve the construction of four to six specialised wind turbine installation vessels (WTIVs) in U.S. shipyards, each representing an investment between USD 250 and USD 500 million.


Photo: Block Island Wind Farm

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