The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities has selected Ocean Wind, an offshore wind energy project proposed by Ørsted with support from PSEG, to develop an 1,100 MW offshore wind farm, that will power more than half a million New Jersey homes. Ocean Wind will be located 15 miles off the coast of Atlantic City. Construction is expected to commence in the early 2020s, with the wind farm operational in 2024.
Ørsted will work with Public Service Enterprise Group’s (PSEG) non-utility affiliates, which will provide energy management services and potential lease of land for use in the project development and execution phase. PSEG, which serves 2.2 million electric customers in New Jersey and has a long development partnership with Ørsted, has an option to become an equity investor in the Ocean Wind project.
Ocean Wind will contribute significantly to Governor Murphy’s ambitious renewable energy goal of supplying more than 1.5 million New Jersey homes with offshore wind power by 2030. At 1,100 MW, Ocean Wind is expected to create over 3000 direct jobs annually through development and three-year construction cycle.
“Today’s announcement firmly establishes a fast-growing global industry in New Jersey, which will create jobs and supply chain in the state,” said Thomas Brostrøm, CEO of Ørsted U.S. Offshore Wind and President of Ørsted North America. “Ocean Wind will ensure that the state and its residents not only benefit from clean, renewable power, but that they reap the rewards of being an early player in the offshore wind industry as it grows in the U.S.”
In addition to powering homes and businesses across New Jersey, Ocean Wind will also bring significant investments to New Jersey. Ørsted will launch its Pro-NJ Trust fund in Cape May and Atlantic Counties which will invest up to $15 million in grants to support local infrastructure investments and to support small, women, and minority-owned business owners who wish to become part of the emerging offshore wind industry. Ørsted is also proceeding with plans to establish an Operation and Maintenance (O&M) base in Atlantic City that will provide permanent, high-skilled jobs during the 25+ lifespan of the project.
As part of its community relations outreach efforts, Ocean Wind will work with JINGOLI through the company’s Competitive Edge and Live Classroom programs that will identify and train Atlantic City residents and students who are interested in working in wind farm construction or in one of the permanent positions that will become available when the project is completed.
Ocean Wind presented a number of creative and significant initiatives within its bid document, that now awarded, will start in motion – beginning with the terms of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed with the South Jersey Building and Construction Trades Council in December, calling for a Project Labor Agreement for offshore wind construction jobs that pay prevailing wage.
New Jersey has tremendous assets in its academic institutions and Ørsted has already signed MOUs with Rutgers, Stockton, and Rowan Universities. Working with each of these universities, Ocean Wind will continue to support academic research, engineering programs and initiatives to further advance undergraduate and graduate students’ knowledge of the offshore wind industry.
“We are pleased that Ocean Wind has been selected by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities to provide offshore wind power to the residents of New Jersey,” said Ralph LaRossa, president and chief operating officer of PSEG Power. “We have pledged our commitment and support of Gov. Phil Murphy’s clean energy agenda and we know that offshore wind will play an important role in providing environmental and economic benefits to New Jersey.”