38 Groups Issue Letter to Support Joint State Action on Transmission for Offshore Wind
June 17, 2022 – Yesterday, over three dozen New England organizations including environmental and community groups, labor unions, and businesses and associations from across each of the six New England states sent a letter to the New England Governors urging them to issue a joint Request for Information (RFI) for electric transmission solutions for offshore wind. The letter, signed by a large diversity of groups that has never before come together to collectively advocate for transmission infrastructure, urges the New England states to jointly issue an RFI for transmission to connect offshore wind to consumers, and requests that the RFI include a solicitation for planned, offshore grid solutions.
New England boasts some of the best offshore wind resources in the country. Harnessing the economic potential of offshore wind can drive growth in the region, help build an equitable clean economy with high-quality jobs, and save billions of dollars for electric ratepayers.
Today’s letter breaks new ground by including organizations and interests from across each of the six New England states to advocate for transmission for offshore wind. “Offshore wind is the single biggest lever we can pull to address the climate crisis, meet our energy needs, and grow our economy all simultaneously,” said Susannah Hatch, of the Environmental League of Massachusetts, speaking on behalf of the New England for Offshore Wind coalition. “Transmission is a critical challenge that needs to be addressed in order for us to seize this opportunity and unlock the next generation of offshore wind projects in the region. Given the astounding benefits that the responsible development of offshore wind would offer our region – from high-quality jobs and economic opportunity to reducing pollution and carbon emissions, it’s no wonder that diverse interests across all six states want to see it get built. We are eager to see the six states move ahead on transmission solutions for offshore wind now.”
“A broad diversity of groups is excited to bring more clean offshore wind to New England communities and we all recognize that can’t be done without cables to deliver the power,” said Melissa Birchard, Director for Clean Energy & Grid Reform at Acadia Center, a clean energy advocacy and research organization that participated in the group letter. “It’s critical to get to work now on the transmission solutions to connect New England with more offshore wind, and a joint request for information about well-planned, offshore grid solutions would jumpstart that work. A well-planned offshore grid that channels more wind to communities using fewer cables could slash costs and impacts.”
Both groups said they hope the strong showing of support across New England for transmission solutions will convince the New England governors to move ahead now with an RFI for transmission for offshore wind.