Martha’s Vineyard wind farm is consented

18 May 2021

The US Department of the Interior Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has given the final go-ahead to Vineyard Wind 1, the USA’s first commercial-scale offshore wind farm, scheduled to be built in the Atlantic Ocean some 15 miles from the Martha’s Vineyard shoreline.

Vineyard Wind 1 is projected to generate 800 MWe using GE Haliade-X offshore wind turbines. These turbines can generate between 12 and 14 MW, depending on the specification for a given project. Using these very high rated WTGs  has allowed the developer to reduce the number of turbines it needs from 108 to 62. John Lavelle, president and CEO of Offshore Wind at GE Renewable Energy, said the announcement was “a key step toward achieving the Biden administration’s goal of bringing 30 GW of offshore wind online by 2030."

The Biden administration announcement on 29 March was part of a far-reaching energy plan to expand the development of offshore wind farms off the United States’ East Coast.

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the Vineyard Wind project stated: “Located 15 miles off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, Vineyard Wind 1 is slated to become the first large-scale offshore wind farm in the United States. With a generating capacity of 800 MW, the project … is also expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 1.68 million metric tons annually.”

Seven US states have commitments to procure 20 GW of offshore wind by 2030, generating enough power to meet two-thirds of the electricity demand in New England. The  $70 billion investment is expected to generate enormous new economic opportunities across the Eastern USA. 

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