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Vineyard and Mayflower ink leases agreements New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal

4C Offshore | Tom Russell
By: Tom Russell 21/08/2020 Baker-Polito Administration
The Baker-Polito Administration has announced the signing of lease agreements with Vineyard Wind and Mayflower Wind to utilise the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal as the primary staging and deployment base for the construction and installation of their offshore wind projects located in federal waters south of Martha’s Vineyard. These lease agreements commit the facility to full-time offshore wind work from 2023 into 2027 and are worth more than $32.5 million.

Constructed and operated by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC), the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal is a 29-acre heavy-lift facility designed to support the construction, assembly, and deployment of offshore wind projects, as well as handle bulk, break-bulk, container, and large specialty marine cargo. The first port in North America specifically purpose-built to support the staging and installation of offshore wind components, the terminal has been engineered to sustain mobile crane and storage loads that rival the highest capacity ports in the world.

“These lease agreements with Vineyard Wind and Mayflower Wind are another major milestone for offshore wind in Massachusetts,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “With this announcement, the Commonwealth continues its national leadership on clean energy and ensures Massachusetts workers will benefit from the jobs and economic opportunities provided by this new industry.”

The Vineyard Wind lease with MassCEC is an amended and revised agreement to accommodate a shift in the project schedule stemming from additional review and permitting required by the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.  The new lease agreement between Mayflower Wind and MassCEC is based on an option to lease the Terminal executed in August 2019.  Both leases contain limited provisions for shared use during limited time periods at the beginning and end of the lease period to provide flexibility in project schedules. 

“The New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal represents a critical piece of port infrastructure for Massachusetts and the region that will be essential to building the offshore wind projects for our energy future,” said MassCEC CEO Stephen Pike. “MassCEC is pleased to welcome both Vineyard Wind and Mayflower Wind to utilize this one-of-a-kind facility as we establish and grow the offshore wind industry operations in this new American marketplace.”

“Vineyard Wind is already proud to call New Bedford home, and with the signing of this lease agreement, we mark yet another step forward in bringing our first project to fruition,” said Vineyard Wind CEO Lars T. Pedersen.  “Once construction begins, the Marine Commerce Terminal will become the birthplace of an entirely new industry, with jobs and opportunities for local residents that simply don’t exist today.  We’re fortunate to have such great partners both locally in the City and Port of New Bedford and in the Baker-Polito Administration.  We look forward to being a growing part of the community.”

Mayflower Wind is a 50/50 joint venture between Shell and EDP Renewables. In December 2018, Mayflower Wind won the rights to develop an array on a federal offshore lease area located about 30 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard and 23 miles south of Nantucket, which it claims has the potential to generate over 1,600 MW. That is enough to power over half a million homes.
“Mayflower Wind would like to thank the Commonwealth and City of New Bedford for their leadership and vision in establishing the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal,” said Michael Brown, President and CEO, Mayflower Wind. “We look forward to creating thousands of good-paying jobs during the construction and installation of our project, anchored around this critical infrastructure investment.” 

Vineyard Wind is a joint venture owned 50% by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) and 50% by Avangrid Renewables. The 800 MW array is to be contained within a 160,000 acre (647km2) lease area, 14 miles (24km) from Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts. It will consist of 84 turbines, each with a 9.5 MW capacity, and is expected meet the energy needs of over 400,000 homes and businesses. The wind farm project was selected in May 2018 by Massachusetts Electric Utilities to provide 800 MW of wind generation, following a request for proposals.

For more information on offshore wind farms worldwide, click here.


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