A 200 megawatt wind farm under development in the Atlantic Ocean could soon be providing power for the East End.
Deepwater Wind, which won a federal lease last July to develop the project on the outer continental shelf 30 miles east of Montauk, announced yesterday it has applied to the Long Island Power Authority to supply the power to the energy grid on Long Island.
LIPA is still overseeing the transmission network it owns, which is now being managed by PSEG Long Island, an offshoot of New Jersey-based PSE&G.
“Our proposal not only provides a cost-effective source of new, clean energy, but it also has the unique ability to deliver large quantities of energy to the East End, where demand is growing, without being seen,” said Deepwater Wind CEO Jeffrey Grybowski in an announcement yesterday.
Deepwater Wind hopes to begin construction of the project as early as 2017 and begin operation in 2018. They plan to bury all transmission cables, connecting to an existing LIPA-owned substation on the South Fork and hope to be able to power 120,000 homes with the electricity generated.
They expect the power price to be “competitive with both traditional fossil fuel power and other clean sources of energy,” due to increasing economies of scale as wind power technology improves and becomes more widely manufactured.
LIPA issued a request for proposals for 280 megawatts of renewable energy last year.
LIPA is also working with Con Edison on a feasibility study of a 350 megawatt offshore wind project off of the Rockaway Peninsula. They estimate the cost of transmission upgrades alone for that project would be $415 million, and have not yet nailed down the variables in the cost of the actual construction of the wind park, which would be done through the competitive bidding project.
The Deepwater ONE wind farm would be comprised of 35 turbines 30 miles east of Montauk and would not be visible from Long Island. The site covers 256 square miles in the Atlantic Ocean. The company is currently building a 30 megawatt demonstration project nearby, known as the Block Island Wind Farm, which is expected to be the nation’s first offshore wind farm when it goes into operation in 2016.
If it is built, the Deepwater ONE project would be on a site described by Deepwater Wind as the best site for offshore wind in the United States, taking advantage of the strong, steady winds of the Atlantic Ocean. It would also be farther from shore than any other project currently proposed.