Originally published in Politico
The state Senate approved legislation today that would allow New Jersey to solicit offshore wind projects in a new way.
The bill, NJ S3985 (18R), would expand the definition of a “qualified offshore wind project” to include “offshore wind transmission facility,” meaning the state Board of Public Utilities could issue requests for proposals for generation and transmission projects. Developers would have to submit separate bids for each type of project, whether for turbines or for the cables and facilities required to bring the wind power to shore.
The vote was 37-0.
Today was the second time the Senate had heard the bill: Lawmakers slightly tweaked the bill’s language last month, but did not vote on it.
The Assembly Appropriations Committee today advanced an amended version of the bill, NJ A5663 (18R), in a 9-1 vote.
Gov. Phil. Murphy has promised to install 7,500 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035, and under his direction, the BPU will solicit 1,200 megawatts of offshore wind energy in 2020 and 2022. The Integrated Energy Plan projected the state would need to develop 11 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2050.