Connecticut, MA & RI Sign Multi-State Agreement for Offshore Wind Procurement

Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island on Wednesday announced New England’s first offshore wind multi-state coordination memorandum of understanding (MOU), which creates a pathway for a potential coordinated selection of offshore wind as each state solicits offshore wind energy generation through their respective state procurements.

This MOU is the first of its kind in the United States.

Through this MOU, the three states will together seek multi-state offshore wind proposals that would expand benefits for the region, capture cost reductions by developing projects at scale, and develop into viable projects. In coordinating, the states will amplify efforts to foster regional economic development, create high-paying, in-demand jobs, and promote environmental justice and equity.

The three states request that offshore wind developers submit multi-state offshore wind project proposals for consideration by the soliciting parties through their respective offshore wind procurements for selection in 2024. Combined, the states’ solicitations are for up to 6,000 MW of offshore wind. Actual project selections will depend on states’ individual assessments of proposals’ costs and benefits to ratepayers and other evaluation criteria specified in states’ requests for proposals. Any two or three states may agree to select a multi-state proposal(s) up to each states’ procurement authority and split the anticipated megawatts and renewable energy certificates from a single project.

“We can go further when we work together, and I’m excited to be collaborating with our neighbors in Massachusetts and Rhode Island on this MOU, which opens up the potential for us to procure clean energy from offshore wind together at more competitive and affordable rates, for the benefit of the residents and businesses in our respective states,” Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont said in a release on Wednesday.

“The climate crisis requires us to act in new and innovative ways,” Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey said. “Massachusetts is proud to join with our neighboring states to continue to grow New England’s offshore wind industry. By working together, we can amplify the many benefits of offshore wind for all three states, including regional economic development opportunities, healthier communities, lower energy bills, and advantages to environmental justice populations and low-income ratepayers.”

“Offshore wind is an important resource in meeting our Act on Climate and renewable energy goals,” Rhode Island Governor Dan McKee said. “Regional collaboration through this three states MOU will not only help in advancing offshore wind projects of large scale by securing cost-effective energy prices for ratepayers – but it also provides a significant opportunity for long-term economic development that the offshore wind industry will bring to the three states.”

The multi-state coordination MOU is an agreement between the Connecticut Department of Energy & Environmental Protection (DEEP), Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER), and the Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources (OER).