New York launches 2.5GW offshore wind tender - updated

New York’s energy regulators have rescheduled a 2.5GW offshore wind tender, having previously suspended it due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. They have also launched a new tender for 1.5GW of onshore renewable energy projects.

New York aims to build 9GW of offshore wind by 2035

This story was first published on 24 April 2020 following the first announcement and subsequent suspension of the tender. It was updated on 22 July when it was rescheduled.

The New York Energy Research and Development Authority (Nyserda) had issued a new offshore wind solicitation for at least 1GW and up to 2.5GW in April, but suspended it indefinitely as government agencies prioritised New York’s response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

It has now relaunched the tender, for 2.5GW of offshore wind capacity, with a submission deadline in October, with contracts due to be executed in Q4 2020.

Nyserda has also launched a tender for onshore renewable energy projects - including onshore wind and solar PV - to supply 1.6TWh/year, while the New York Power Authority (NYPA) has launched an auction round for projects to supply at least 2TWh/year. Together, these tenders could procure up to 1.5GW of new renewable energy projects, Nyserda believes.

Submissions for Nyserda’s solicitation have a deadline in August, while those for NYPA’s tender are due in September.

In its filing with the state regulators in January, Nyserda argued that holding the offshore wind auction this year would help developers to better “capture rapidly falling costs”.

Developers beginning construction or investing 5% total project costs by the end of 2020 would qualify for 18% of the expiring investment tax credit (ITC), Nyserda explained.

New York has a target of building 9GW of offshore wind by 2035, and has to date awarded contracts for 1.7GW of projects — Equinor’s 816MW Empire Wind 1 and Ørsted’s 924MW Sunrise Wind .

Following the state's first offshore wind tender, held in 2019, Nyserda said that the €83.63/MWh average price awarded was about 40% below its expectations.

Meanwhile, in a previous onshore renewable energy tender launched in June 2019, Nyserda contracted 188.2MW of projects at an average price of $18.59/MWh. Onshore wind accounted for 14% of the capacity awarded.