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US Gulf of Mexico Offshore Wind Lease Sale

4C Offshore | Chloe Emanuel
By: Chloe Emanuel 29/08/2023 TGS | 4C Offshore

US Gulf of Mexico to Host First Offshore Wind Leases: Potential and Ambition

Today marks a significant step in the development of the US Gulf of Mexico's offshore wind sector, with the auction of three offshore wind leases off the coasts of Galveston and Lake Charles. While Texas and Louisiana have been well-acquainted with wind power, particularly onshore projects in northern Texas, the move to offshore wind brings questions about the region's choice and timing.

Population, Industry, and Vision Drive Offshore Wind

The Houston area, housing around 7.4 million people, has emerged as a population hub and a key industrial center in the US. This bustling economic activity has led to soaring energy demand, making it a ripe location for offshore wind projects. With Houston being a significant export market and boasting a GDP that rivals even some countries, the prospects for energy consumption in the area are substantial. The region's demographic and economic factors make it a favorable location for offshore wind initiatives.

Offshore Wind Development in Comparison

Analyzing the Gulf of Mexico's suitability for offshore wind in comparison to its peers globally and within the US, TGS' Wind AXIOM analytics platform highlights some key advantages. Shallow water depths, averaging around 20 meters, offer a clear advantage over other fixed foundation projects. This translates to lower construction costs, a feature not found in other offshore wind regions like California. Furthermore, the Gulf's well-established offshore service industry reduces project delivery risks significantly. Storm resilience, another concern for offshore projects, aligns with the Gulf's experience in fortifying infrastructure against hurricanes.

Gulf's Enormous Potential

Each of the leases up for auction could host over 130 turbines with estimated annual energy generation exceeding 8,600GWh/yr, even with conservative losses. This substantial potential aligns with the growing demand for energy in the region and positions the Gulf of Mexico as a strong contender in the global offshore wind landscape.
TGS, a pioneer in wind and metocean observation, is committed to supporting the development of offshore wind projects with cutting-edge technology.

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