US Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland announced yesterday that the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) will hold a wind auction in February for more than 480,000 acres offshore New York and New Jersey, in the area known as the New York Bight. This will be the first offshore wind lease sale under the Biden-Harris administration.
The February 23 auction will allow offshore wind developers to bid on six lease areas, the most areas ever offered in a single auction. Leases offered in this sale could result in 5.6 to 7 GW of offshore wind energy, enough to power nearly 2m homes.
The New York Bight offshore wind auction will include several lease stipulations designed to promote the development of a robust domestic US supply chain for offshore wind. The stipulations include incentives to source major components domestically – such as blades, turbines and foundations – and to enter into project labour agreements to ensure projects are union-built.
BOEM initially asked for information and nominations of commercial interest for 1.7m acres in the Bight. Based on the bureau’s review of scientific data, and extensive stakeholder input, BOEM reduced the acreage by 72% to avoid conflicts with ocean users and minimize environmental impacts.