The governors of Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia have agreed to collaborate to advance offshore wind projects in the region and promote the southeast and mid-Atlantic US as a hub for offshore wind energy and industry
Creation of the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic Regional Transformative Partnership for Offshore Wind Energy Resources (SMART-POWER) is intended to provide a framework for the states to co-operatively promote, develop, and expand offshore wind energy and the accompanying industry supply chain and workforce. The states have also agreed to form a SMART-POWER leadership team with representatives from each working to streamline the development of regional offshore wind resources.
The states recognise that the fast-growing offshore wind industry has significant potential to drive economic development and job creation and reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases. They have committed to work together to increase regulatory certainty, encourage manufacturing of component parts, reduce project costs through supply chain development, share information and best practices, and promote synergy between industry and the signatory jurisdictions.
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan said, “Maryland has been leading the charge when it comes to real, bipartisan, common sense solutions and we are proud to continue setting an example for the nation of bold environmental leadership.
“Joining this multi-state partnership to expand offshore wind development will further our strong record of supporting responsible energy projects that provide jobs, clean air benefits, and energy independence.”
North Carolina governor Roy Cooper said, “Offshore wind development combined with our strong solar capacity will bring more high paying, clean energy jobs to North Carolina while we continue to ramp up our fight against climate change.
“This bipartisan agreement with neighbouring states allows us to leverage our combined economic power and ideas to achieve cost effective success.”
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam said, “Harnessing the power of offshore wind is key to meeting the urgency of the climate crisis and achieving 100% clean energy by 2050.
“Virginia is well-placed to scale up offshore wind development with a 12-megawatt wind demonstration project already built off our coast. This agreement will help unlock our collective offshore wind resources and generate tremendous economic and environmental benefits for the region. We look forward to working with our partners in Maryland and North Carolina to grow the offshore wind industry and secure a cleaner, healthier, and more resilient future.”
Responding to the announcement, American Wind Energy Association senior director of policy and regulatory affairs for offshore wind Lura Morton said, “We applaud this bipartisan move by Governors Hogan, Hooper, and Northam to harness the employment and investment benefits that offshore wind development represents to their individual states and the whole region.
“By adding multi-state co-ordination to their individual efforts, the three states will be able to move forward more efficiently to develop their infrastructure and local supply chains to unleash this new American energy industry and the jobs and investments that come with it.”
Riviera is hosting a week of free to attend 45-minute webinars focused on offshore wind commencing 2 November. Register your interest now