Equinor and BP have decided to terminate the Empire Wind 2 project, citing inflation, interest rates, and supply chain disruptions. The Northeastern U.S. offshore project promised a potential generative capacity of 1,260 MW.
The companies reached an agreement with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to terminate their Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Certificate (OREC) Agreement. They say this arrangement reflects changed economic circumstances on an industry-wide scale and repositions an “already mature” project to continue development under a new agreement.
“Commercial viability is fundamental for ambitious projects of this size and scale. The Empire Wind 2 decision provides the opportunity to reset and develop a stronger and more robust project going forward,” said Molly Morris, president of Equinor Renewables Americas. “We will continue to closely engage our many community partners across the state. As evidenced by the progress at the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal, our offshore wind activity is ready to generate union jobs and significant economic activity in New York.”
The Empire Wind 1 and Empire Wind 2 projects recently reached a key federal permitting milestone, having received the federal Record of Decision from BOEM.
But the project was already on the chopping block after the New York State Public Service Commission denied petitions filed by a group of developers and a state renewable energy trade association seeking billions of dollars in additional funding from consumers for four proposed offshore wind projects and 86 land-based renewable projects.
In October, developers who filed the petition, including subsidiaries of Orsted, Equinor, and BP, said that they were reviewing the Commission’s decision before reassessing their offshore projects, like Orsted’s 924-MW Sunrise Wind, Equinor/bp’s 816-MW Empire Wind 1, 1,260-MW Empire Wind 2 and 1,230-MW Beacon Wind.