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DEEP Receives Proposals Under Multistate Offshore Wind RFP

(HARTFORD) — The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) has received proposals from four project developers under its multistate Request For Proposals (RFP) with Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

DEEP issued its request for proposals (RFP) this past October as part of a coordinated solicitation with Massachusetts and Rhode Island. DEEP’s request for proposals is for up to 2,000 megawatts (MW) of new offshore wind, which would add to the 304 MW of offshore wind power that Connecticut will receive from the Revolution Wind project, which was jointly selected by Connecticut and Rhode Island in an earlier procurement and is now under development.

Last week, following calls from Connecticut and other states, the Biden Administration released updated guidance that will ensure that more offshore wind and other renewable energy projects are eligible to receive federal tax credits under the Inflation Reduction Act—a development that DEEP hopes will improve the affordability of these projects.

“We look forward to evaluating the submitted proposals received under this RFP over the coming months, and coordinating review of any multi-state proposals received with Massachusetts and Rhode Island, as we explore opportunities to bring more clean, affordable, and reliable energy sources online for Connecticut residents,” DEEP Commissioner Katie Dykes said.

DEEP will evaluate the proposals over the coming months and expects to announce in the third quarter of 2024 whether any projects have been selected to move forward with power purchase agreement (PPA) negotiations with the state’s electric distribution utilities. DEEP’s RFP outlines the selection criteria, which includes a quantitative evaluation of the project’s cost and energy market impacts, and a qualitative evaluation, which assigns points to bids based on various criteria, including consistency with the policy goals outlined in DEEP’s Comprehensive Energy Strategy and Integrated Resources Plan; the bidder’s implementation of meaningful public participation and environmental justice practices; plans for the use of skilled labor and impact on Connecticut’s economic development; and plans and practices to avoid, minimize, and mitigate impacts to wildlife, natural resources, ecosystems and traditional or existing water-dependent uses, including, but not limited to, commercial fishing. Any PPA agreed to between a selected offshore wind developer and the utilities would be subject to review and approval by the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA).  

In addition to the offshore wind solicitation, DEEP is currently conducting competitive solicitations for other zero-carbon resources like solar and onshore wind and for grid-scale energy storage, to secure the affordable, reliable, and clean electricity that Connecticut needs. DEEP is in the process of reviewing proposals received under its solicitation for other zero-carbon resources, which were due on January 31, 2024. DEEP released an RFP for grid-scale energy storage on March 11, 2024, with bids due April 18, 2024.

Public versions of the offshore wind proposals received by DEEP will be available at DEEP’s Energy Filings webpage under the “2023 Offshore Wind Procurement” proceeding in the coming days.

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