NEW BEDFORD — We have three bidders for Round 2 of offshore wind.
The bid evaluation team for Massachusetts’ second offshore wind farm released bids Thursday from three familiar names: Bay State Wind, Mayflower Wind and Vineyard Wind.
As expected, their prices and certain other particulars have been redacted.
In New Bedford, which has sought to position itself as a hub for offshore wind, Mayor Jon Mitchell is eager to see the bidders commit to providing economic benefits for the region.
“It will be critically important that the evaluation team carefully weighs the economic development proposals in each of the bids and what they might mean to investment and job creation in New Bedford,” he told The Standard-Times in an interview.
The city is home to the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal, which will be a staging point for construction of Vineyard Wind 1, the wind farm that won a contract last year. Federal permits for that project are still pending, and the timeline has stretched beyond what Vineyard Wind anticipated.
This is the second solicitation under the state’s 2016 energy law, which requires electric companies to buy 1,600 megawatts of offshore wind capacity by 2027.
The request for proposals required each bidder to submit a bid for a 400-megawatt wind farm. They could also submit projects between 200 and 800 megawatts.
According to their bids or previous public statements, their bids are:
• Bay State Wind – 400 mw and 800 mw
• Mayflower Wind – 408 mw and three proposals at 804 mw each
• Vineyard Wind – 400 mw and 800 mw, with two options for the latter.
Mayflower Wind has said its three 800-megwatt proposals are customized to highlight different goals: Low-Price Energy, Infrastructure and Innovation, and Massachusetts Manufacturing.
Of the bidders, Mayflower is the only one that did not bid last year. Its wind farm would be located about 20 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard, south of Bay State Wind and Vineyard Wind.
Last year, the evaluators surprised many observers by awarding a full 800-megawatt contract to Vineyard Wind, rather than splitting the business between two companies at 400 megawatts each.
Vineyard Wind has signed a lease to use the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal to stage construction of turbines. Last summer, the company said it would likely add Brayton Point as another staging location.
Three electricity distribution companies — Eversource, National Grid and Unitil — and the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources comprise the evaluation team.
Original story here