NREL Estimates U.S. Offshore Wind Development Pipeline Totals 15,650 MW
On September 29, 2015, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) released a new report detailing the nascent offshore wind industry in the United States. The report estimates 15,650 MW in the development pipeline covering 21 projects located in 12 states.
- The 30 MW Block Island Wind Farm in Rhode Island has begun construction and is likely to be operational in 2016
- In total, 13 projects representing nearly 5,939 MW have achieved site control or more advanced development (see Figure 1)
- The bulk of the pipeline (9,711 MW) though is in early stages of development
- Globally, cumulative offshore wind capacity is expected to reach 11,800 MW by year end and more than 47,000 MW by 2020
- Future cost projections suggest technology innovation and maturing supply chains could drive a decline in offshore wind energy costs through 2020
While the development pipeline is noteworthy in size, nearly two-thirds of the capacity is in early planning stages. Full development of the pipeline will require successful deployment of early offshore projects and significant cost declines.
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