The Baker-Polito Administration has confirmed that Mayflower Wind, a joint venture between Shell New Energies and EDPR Offshore North America has been selected to supply 804 MW of offshore wind energy to the state of Massachusetts
The JV was selected by the Commonwealth’s electric distribution companies to move forward to contract negotiations, to provide power to Massachusetts as part of an energy procurement authorised by the act on energy diversity signed by Governor Baker in 2016.
A bid from Vineyard Wind, the company that won an initial procurement from the state, lost out, as did one from Bay State Wind, the 50/50 JV between Ørsted and Eversource. That first procurement resulted in executed and approved contracts with the Vineyard Wind 1 project for 800 MW, one of the first large procurements of offshore wind in the US. The combined energy output of Vineyard Wind 1 and Mayflower Wind represents approximately 12% of total annual energy demand for Massachusetts.
By selecting Mayflower Wind, the electric distribution companies and the Commonwealth have reached the initial procurement target of approximately 1.6 GW from the Energy Diversity Act of 2016, which added a new Section 83C to the Green Communities Act.
During the bid process, Mayflower Wind proposed wind energy at a more competitive price with greater economic development opportunities for the Commonwealth and the south coast than any other bidder. The competitive solicitation was announced on 23 May 2019 and revised on 7 August 2019 for projects between approximately 200 MW and 800 MW.
Final acceptance of the Shell/EDPR bid and award of contract is conditional upon successful contract negotiations between the parties and the regulatory approval at the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU).
Mayflower Wind anticipates that the project, located more than 32 km south of Nantucket with expected start-up in 2025, will provide economic benefits including long-term prices below the original price cap of US$84.23/MWh; US$3.7Bn in electricity rate reduction over the term of the contract; and create up to 10,000 jobs in Massachusetts including both offshore jobs and onshore opportunities.
Mayflower Wind President John Hartnett said, “Development of Mayflower Wind will contribute to building an offshore supply chain on the south coast and across the Commonwealth, helping to launch a new clean, safe and innovative sector of our economy. We look forward to working with all of our stakeholders to ensure a safe and successful project.”
Mayflower Wind has provided the same competitive pricing solution to the state of Connecticut under its ongoing procurement process for offshore wind.
Vineyard Wind chief executive Lars Pedersen said, “While today’s decision is disappointing, we remain fully committed to delivering the first large-scale offshore windfarm in the US to Massachusetts and will continue to grow our company in the Commonwealth.”