Maryland Assembly passes bill to quadruple state’s offshore wind development

Published on April 12, 2023 by Dave Kovaleski

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The Maryland General Assembly passed a bill this week that will more than quadruple Maryland’s offshore wind generation goals.

The Promoting Offshore Wind Energy Resources (POWER) Act of 2023 (Senate Bill 0781/House Bill 0793) now moves to Gov. Wes Moore’s desk, where he expected to sign it into law.

The POWER Act will boost Maryland’s offshore wind generation goals from about 2 GW to 8.5 GW by 2031. The 8.5 GW of offshore wind energy is enough to supply clean energy to more than 2 million homes in Maryland while creating tens of thousands of jobs. The bill will also improve the state’s transmission infrastructure and provide a pathway to future procurement of offshore wind energy in the state. In addition, the bill ensures that offshore wind projects provide equitable opportunities for local unions and minority, women, service-disabled, and veteran-owned businesses.

US Wind, a leader in offshore wind development, applauded the passage of the bill.

“The POWER Act is a real game changer for Maryland,” Jeff Grybowski, US Wind CEO, said. “It sets a path for the people of Maryland to reap the benefits of huge amounts of clean energy in the coming years. It also tells the entire offshore wind industry globally that Maryland is back big time as a major player. Companies looking to invest in offshore wind have to seriously consider Maryland.”

In 2014, US Wind acquired an 80,000-acre federal lease area off the coast of Maryland, and in 2017, Maryland approved the company’s MarWin project. Further, in 2021, the state approved the Momentum Wind project.

In addition to building MarWin and Momentum Wind, US Wind will also establish Maryland’s first permanent offshore wind component factory — Sparrows Point Steel. The factory will serve the entire U.S. market and secure a major role for the state in the rapidly growing U.S. offshore wind industry.