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U.S. Governors Urge President Biden to Support Offshore Wind Amid Economic Challenges

4C Offshore | Chloe Emanuel
By: Chloe Emanuel 13/09/2023 Clean Power
Six American state badges in front of offshore wind farm
In a joint letter addressed to President Joseph R. Biden Jr., six U.S. governors have rallied their support behind the administration's ambitious offshore wind energy goals while highlighting the challenges posed by economic pressures, geopolitical tensions, and ongoing supply chain disruptions. The governors of Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island have called on the federal government to take swift action to ensure the continued progress of offshore wind projects.

President Biden's commitment to achieving 30 GW of offshore wind power by 2030 has garnered widespread support for its potential to create jobs, reduce carbon emissions, enhance grid reliability, and bolster clean energy production. However, the recent confluence of factors threatens to hinder this progress, leaving offshore wind initiatives at risk of stalling.

The governors pinpointed three key actions they believe are essential to mitigating these challenges and sustaining the momentum of offshore wind development in the United States:

1. Updated Clean Energy Tax Credit Guidance: The governors urgently requested the Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to update guidance on federal clean energy tax credits. This update should ensure that offshore wind projects remain eligible for credits, including the Domestic Content and Energy Community Bonus Credits under the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (IRA). The goal is to provide feasible pathways for projects to qualify for these tax credits, supporting both near-term and long-term offshore wind initiatives.

2. Establishment of a Revenue Sharing Program: Current federal law dictates that revenue generated from offshore wind leases beyond state waters goes directly to the U.S. Treasury. This arrangement places the financial burden on electricity ratepayers, ultimately hindering the development of these crucial projects. The governors advocated for a portion of these revenues to be redistributed to the states most affected by these costs, in line with the bipartisan Reinvesting in Shoreline Economies and Ecosystems (RISEE) Act. This redistribution would support state investments in coastal restoration, hurricane protection, infrastructure improvements, and environmental conservation.

3. Expedited Clean Energy Permitting: Delays in the permitting process for offshore wind projects can have adverse effects, including increased costs and slowed progress. The governors called upon President Biden to work with relevant agencies to expedite and streamline permitting procedures, ensuring that these projects can contribute to the rapid growth of the U.S. clean energy sector.

In conclusion, the governors emphasized the urgent need for federal action to safeguard the development of offshore wind projects, which hold immense promise for domestic manufacturing, employment opportunities, and community benefits. By addressing the economic challenges posed by inflation, geopolitical tensions, and supply chain disruptions, the United States can continue its journey towards a more sustainable and clean energy future.

For more information about offshore wind farm projects across the globe, click here.


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