The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has completed the nation’s seventh competitive lease sale for renewable wind energy in North Carolina. The winning bid of $9,066,650 for an area of 122,405 acres offshore Kitty Hawk, North Carolina was received by Avangrid Rewewables.
BOEM announced the Kitty Hawk auction in January 2017, and the award represents the first federal offshore wind lease sale under the Trump administration.
The six earlier lease sales generated $58 million in high bids for more than one million acres in federal waters, including a lease sale for 79,000 acres offshore New York that generated a winning bid of $42.5 million. BOEM also recently marked the operational launch of the nation’s first commercial offshore wind farm – the five-turbine, 30 megawatt Block Island Wind Facility developed by Deepwater Wind at a cost of $290 million.
Also participating in the Kitty Hawk lease sale were Wind Future, Statoil Wind US and wpd offshore Alpha.
The lease area, designated OCS-A 0508, begins about 24 nautical miles from shore and extends 25.7 nautical miles in a general southeast direction. Its seaward extent ranges from 13.5 nautical miles in the north to 0.6 of a nautical mile in the south.
Using the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s estimates of three megawatts (MW) per square kilometer, the lease area has a potential generating capacity of 1,486 MW, enough energy to power more than 500,000 homes. The actual size of the wind energy project will be determined by the developer.
Following various planning requirements and an environmental review, the lessee will have 25 years to construct and operate the project.