Around 13GW of offshore wind is being developed off the coast of the US, but only one project – the 30MW Block Island Wind farm – is currently generating power. Large-scale projects, nearly all planned off the East Coast, will not be online until the 2020s, yet developers, bankers and others in the renewables space are already viewing the sector as a safe bet, if not a sure thing.
Growing pains are expected, but industry participants are counting on experience gained from project development across the pond around Europe and the UK. But there is also political skepticism and policy uncertainty to consider, coupled with the more obvious technical challenges of logistics, site assessment and deeper-water development on the West Coast.
"The US will certainly take advantage of the path already travelled by the EU offshore market and will be in a position to catch up in just a few years," Alejandro de Hoz, the vice president of US offshore for Avangrid Renewables, tells Inframation.
*This publication was first published in Inframation News.