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S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):

Avangrid Inc.’s 800-MW Vineyard Offshore Wind Project appears on track to become the first large-scale U.S. offshore wind farm to enter service, with the developer expecting a final investment decision in the second half of 2021 and production of electricity to begin in 2023, executives said May 4.

Avangrid’s 23-GW pipeline of renewable energy projects and “leadership in offshore wind will drive significant growth opportunities supported by favorable federal policies and strong demand for clean energy,” the company’s CEO, Dennis Arriola, said during its first-quarter 2021 earnings conference call. Avangrid is owned by Spain-headquartered Iberdrola SA.

All major construction contracts with suppliers and contractors have been secured for Vineyard Wind, and the utility is finalizing the “evaluation of optimal financing structures” including tax equity and project financing, Arriola said.

The federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management issued Vineyard Wind’s final environmental impact statement in March and a record of decision from the agency is expected “very soon” in May, the CEO said, with financial close and the start of construction in the second half of this year. Avangrid is developing the project through its Avangrid Renewables LLC subsidiary, in partnership with Denmark-based Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners K/S.

Avangrid is also working on the 804-MW Park City Wind Offshore project, again with Copenhagen Infrastructure. The output is under contract to Connecticut utilities, and the company is looking at a commercial delivery date of 2025.

These two projects are included in the roughly 7.5 GW of capacity in the northeast mid-Atlantic lease area that Avangrid controls, Arriola said, adding, “Our strategic offshore wind investments are positioned to deliver growth and financial results beginning in 2024 and 2025.”

[Jared Anderson]

More: Avangrid expects Vineyard Wind offshore project to start producing power in 2023

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