HARTFORD, Conn. and BOSTON, Mass. – Joint venture partners Eversource and Ørsted today announced the submission of its Constitution Wind project bid in response to Connecticut’s Request for Proposals (RFP) for offshore wind energy generation. Constitution Wind included several project proposals that offer Connecticut flexibility in selecting its next offshore wind project.
In addition to delivering unmatched investments into Connecticut and stakeholder collaboration, Constitution Wind is the only project that is the product of more than four years of development and detailed analysis. It presents Connecticut with a mature, well-studied project that the state can be confident will allow it to meet its recently strengthened climate change mandates.
“Since 2015, our team has been focused on bringing affordable, renewable energy to Connecticut, a major opportunity for the state’s clean energy future and economy,” said President of Ørsted North America and CEO of Ørsted U.S. Offshore Wind Thomas Brostrøm. “Following up on the selection of our Revolution Wind project by the state and our investment to turn New London State Pier into a world-class offshore wind center, our proposed Constitution Wind project will be delivered by the industry’s leading experts to ensure the project is achievable, sustainable and successful for Connecticut.”
Constitution Wind supports Connecticut’s mandate that 40 percent of the state’s electricity comes from renewable sources by 2030. With more than 5 gigawatts of power plants at risk to retire over the next decade, Constitution Wind will replace lost capacity and diversify the state’s power sources with clean, affordable energy.
“We commend Connecticut’s commitment to becoming a leader in the fast-growing offshore wind industry,” said Eversource Executive Vice President for Enterprise Energy Strategy and Business Development Lee Olivier. “Through our four years of project development and outreach, we have heard the enthusiasm for offshore wind from residents, businesses, and communities across the state. We look forward to assisting Connecticut’s transition to clean, affordable, offshore wind energy.”
Drawing from Ørsted’s unmatched record of developing 25 offshore wind farms around the globe on time and on budget, and Eversource’s more than 100-year presence in the Northeast, industry-leading financial strength, and regional transmission development expertise, Constitution Wind brings unparalleled differentiators to its bid in several key areas:
Four-year Maturity of the Constitution Wind Project
Constitution Wind has been in development since 2015, with more than 100 employees supporting the project. The project team understands the comprehensive and parallel efforts required to develop and construct a wind farm in the waters off New England and has developed metrics, including integrated scheduling techniques, to measure progress and proactively anticipate all steps in the process.
In an effort to gather as much information and research about the project and its surrounding environment, the team gathered two years of advanced FLiDAR wind speed data specific to its lease area and conducted over 12,000 miles of geophysical surveys in the lease area and along the export cable route – equivalent to the distance between Hartford and Perth, Australia. This vast quantity of reliable data provides Connecticut with greater certainty that Constitution Wind will deliver on its commitment to bring renewable energy to the state and support Connecticut’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions by 45% by 2030. Additionally, the data collected has been used to adapt the project design to better mitigate stakeholder and environmental impacts and will allow Constitution Wind to secure the necessary project permits before construction.
Long-term Engagement with Marine Life and Fisheries
Sharing marine resources is critical not only to the success of offshore wind but for larger efforts to create a sustainable energy source. Constitution Wind understands the challenges that can come with co-existence in the ocean, including Connecticut’s deeply-rooted fishing industry and the protection of marine mammals.
Constitution Wind is the only developer to demonstrate its willingness to work directly with the fishing industry and other ocean users. As part of its ongoing stakeholder engagement, the Constitution Wind project team incorporated, and continues to incorporate, many suggestions from fishermen and local stakeholders to balance the needs of the fishing community and mariners with this offshore wind energy.
In response to feedback from fishermen and community members, Constitution Wind was the first developer to proactively revise its turbine layout pattern to accommodate historical fishing patterns and ease transiting through the wind farm. The developers of Constitution Wind were also the first in the industry to partner with the Responsible Offshore Development Alliance (RODA), the only national commercial fishing organization that is purpose-built for interacting with the offshore wind industry to maintain sustainable fisheries.
Investment in Connecticut
Constitution Wind is committed to meaningful, local investment to ensure the Connecticut community benefits from offshore wind development. In addition to providing hundreds of jobs during construction, the project is committing hundreds of millions in direct community investments. Additionally, Eversource and Ørsted are committed to working with the state, unions, and local colleges and universities to drive job training for offshore wind.
Joint venture partners Eversource and Ørsted have committed to invest $57 million for upgrades to New London State Pier, an underutilized state asset, to accommodate the industry and create a world-class offshore wind staging hub in Connecticut. The upgraded facility will create a secure revenue stream for the state and spur local economic development and job creation in New London and the surrounding communities. The joint venture partners will also soon open an office in downtown New London to support its portfolio of projects across the Northeast and its future work out of New London State Pier.
About Constitution Wind
Constitution Wind is a proposed offshore wind project located 65 miles off the coast of New London, Connecticut that will have the capacity to power up to half a million homes.
The project is a significant distance from coastal and residential communities and virtually unnoticeable to the state’s residents and beachgoers.
In development since 2015, Constitution Wind offers unparalleled maturity and community stakeholder engagement and is based on a rigorous evaluation of the work being led by Ørsted and Eversource’s team of industry-leading experts with unmatched experience.
Constitution Wind represents a partnership between Eversource and Ørsted, which combines Eversource’s more than 100 year presence in the Northeast, industry-leading financial strength, and regional transmission development expertise with Ørsted’s world-class offshore wind development capability having built the world’s first, the world’s largest, and the U.S.’s first offshore wind farms.
Eversource (NYSE: ES) transmits and delivers electricity and natural gas and supplies water to approximately 4 million customers in Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hampshire. Recognized as the top U.S. utility for its energy efficiency programs by the sustainability advocacy organization Ceres, Eversource harnesses the commitment of its more than 8,000 employees across three states to build a single, united company around the mission of safely delivering reliable energy and water with superior customer service. For more information, please visit the company’s website (www.eversource.com) and follow along on Twitter (@EversourceCorp) and Facebook (facebook.com/EversourceEnergy). For more information on water services, visit www.aquarionwater.com.
About Ørsted U.S. Offshore Wind
Ørsted U.S. Offshore Wind delivers clean, renewable energy along the U.S. Eastern Seaboard. It operates the Block Island Wind Farm, America’s first offshore wind farm, and has been awarded over 2,900 megawatts of capacity through six projects. It is jointly headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts and Providence, Rhode Island and employs more than 100 people.
The Ørsted vision is a world that runs entirely on green energy. Ørsted develops, constructs and operates offshore and onshore wind farms, bioenergy plants and provides energy products to its customers. Headquartered in Denmark, Ørsted employs 6,300 people. Ørsted’s shares are listed on Nasdaq Copenhagen (Orsted). In 2018, the group’s revenue was DKK 76.9 billion (EUR 10.3 billion). For more information on Ørsted, visit orsted.com or follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.
Ørsted North America