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Massachusetts releases RFP for 1,600 megawatts of offshore wind

May 10, 2021


THE STATE’S ELECTRIC utilities and the Baker administration are back in the market for another offshore wind contract, this time seeking up to twice as much power as in previous rounds.

Under a request for proposals released Friday, bids are due by September 16, with plans to select the winning bid or bids December 17 and have contracts filed with the Department of Public Utilities by April 27, 2022.

The 140-page RFP seeks bids of “at least 400 MW and up to 1600 MW of Offshore Wind Energy Generation,” and says the evaluation team will consider proposals of at least 200 megawatts. It says there is no preferred bid size.

A 1,600 megawatt procurement would just about double the amount of energy that Massachusetts utilities have contracted for so far since a 2016 clean energy law kicked off the state’s foray into the offshore wind world. Two projects, Vineyard Wind I and Mayflower Wind, are under contract for roughly 1,600 megawatts combined.

State energy officials said last year that one larger solicitation, rather than two procurement rounds of 800 MW each, “would give developers maximum flexibility to use transmission infrastructure efficiently, thereby helping ensure the Commonwealth receives the best possible suite of bids that minimize the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of siting offshore wind structures in the ocean and on land and achieve many of the potential benefits of the independent transmission solicitation without the added costs and risks.”

[Katie Lannan]

More: State begins 3d procurement for offshore wind

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