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Maryland Takes a Lead in Offshore Wind with Two OREC Awards
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The Maryland Public Service Commission recently awarded offshore renewable energy credits (ORECs) to two offshore wind developers for projects totaling 368 MW. This show of support for offshore wind follows the successful commissioning of the nation’s first offshore wind farm, the 30 MW Block Island Wind Farm, earlier this year.

ESS has been working as the lead environmental consultant with one of the developers, Maryland-based US Wind, to secure the OREC award and other permits for their proposed offshore wind farm. US Wind ultimately plans to construct up to 187 turbines to produce power for more than 500,000 homes. The completed project would yield numerous environmental and health benefits, including substantial reductions in CO2 emissions over the next two decades.

The project also recently received an offshore air permit and other approvals to install a meteorological tower, and will submit a Construction and Operations Plan (COP) for the wind farm to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) later this year. The US Wind Maryland project expects to be operational in early 2020.

“It’s been such an honor to work on this incredible project and to navigate the uncharted waters of the evolving offshore wind industry,” said ESS President & CEO Charles Natale. “Seeing success on challenging projects like this is what makes our work so deeply rewarding. ESS congratulates US Wind on this milestone achievement and we cannot wait to keep pressing forward to make this monumental dream a reality.”