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First Monopiles Arrive for Dominion Energy's Coastal Virginia Wind Farm

wind farm monopiles
Eight eight monopiles for Dominion Energy's wind farm arrived for staging in Virginia (Dominion Energy)

Published Oct 27, 2023 6:49 PM by The Maritime Executive

After a seemingly endless stream of bad news for the U.S. offshore wind energy industry, elected officials, executives from Dominion Energy, the Port of Virginia, and their partners, gathered today to mark a key step forward for the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind (CVOW) project. The wind farm, which is still waiting for its final approvals and permitting, is already the largest offshore wind project under development in the U.S. and is gearing up for construction to begin after years of planning.

The first eight monopile foundations, built in Germany, arrived last week in Virginia at the staging site at the Portsmouth Marine Terminal. The massive steel constructions, each weighing around 1,500 tons, took nearly two and a half weeks by ship to reach Virginia. They are the first of the foundations for a total of 176 wind turbines that are planned for CVOW. 

 

 

"The delivery of the first foundations is further evidence that our Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind project continues to move forward on time and on budget to provide reliable, affordable, and increasingly clean energy to our customers," said Bob Blue, Dominion Energy's chair, president and chief executive officer. "This regulated offshore wind project positions us, and the Commonwealth of Virginia, as leaders in the development of offshore wind and provides many benefits for our customers and local economies."

Executives from Dominion Energy and the partners along with Virginia Governor Glenn Younkin took the opportunity today to mark the offloading of the monopiles. They affixed their signatures to the components and marked the first tangible steps in a project that represents an approximate $9.8 billion investment in clean energy.

Each of the monopiles is up to 272 feet long and has a diameter of 31 feet. They will be the first piece of the turbines which will stand nearly 500 feet to the top of the nacelle and 836 feet to the tip height of the blades. Each of the blades will be 354 feet in length. In the coming weeks and months, additional components will be staged at the Portsmouth site in advance of the anticipated beginning of construction in 2024. DEME has been contracted for the installation of the monopolies when the project reaches that stage.

 

Monopiles are being staged in Portsmouth, Virginia before construction begins in 2024 (Dominion Energy)

 

CVOW is expected to take about two years to build and will be located 27 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach. When it is operational, it will generate up to 2.6 GW which will power 660,000 homes. The project also includes three offshore substations, undersea cables, and new onshore transmission infrastructure

The project continues to advance through the federal permitting process, receiving the Final Environmental Impact Statement from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) last month. BOEM is expected to issue its Record of Decision on the project in the coming days according to Dominion Energy.