The Biden administration has proposed auctioning five areas off the coast of California for offshore wind development, with the potential to unlock over 4.5 GW of energy that could power more than 1.5m homes.
The first-ever proposal for an offshore wind lease sale on the US west coast follows the New York Bight and Carolina auctions earlier this year in Atlantic waters and is part of the US goal to deploy 30 GW of offshore wind energy by 2030.
The proposed sale notice includes three lease areas off central California near Morro Bay and two areas off the northern coast near Humboldt County, totaling around 373,000 acres for floating wind developments.
“Today’s action represents tangible progress towards achieving the administration’s vision for a clean energy future offshore California while creating a domestic supply chain and good-paying union jobs,” said Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) director Amanda Lefton.
To date, BOEM has held 10 competitive lease sales and has issued 25 active commercial offshore wind leases in the Atlantic Ocean from Massachusetts to North Carolina. The California lease sale, which will publish in the Federal Register on May 31, 2022, will be open for 60-day public comment. The state earlier this month set a preliminary goal of building 3 GW of offshore wind by 2030 and up to 12 additional GW by 2045.