New Hampshire for Offshore Wind
New Hampshire has significant offshore wind potential off its coast. While the state has yet to finalize offshore wind procurements, recent legislation is working to push the industry forward. New Hampshire has the capacity to serve as an important part of the offshore wind supply chain, taking advantage of the facilities at the Pease Tradeport in Portsmouth.
Offshore Wind’s Progress in New Hampshire
In March 2021, Gov. Sununu signed executive order 2021-03 which ordered a number of state agencies to report on the potential greenhouse gas reduction for various levels of offshore wind development. In early 2022, two bills from Sen. David Watters passed the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee with unanimous, bipartisan support. One bill included language for requiring thorough environmental studies before approving offshore wind projects and the other focused on procurement standards and processes. Strong legislative action like this will help the state advance its offshore wind portfolio in the coming decade.
The state of New Hampshire is a member of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s Gulf of Maine Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force on offshore wind with Massachusetts and Maine. The initial meeting on the task force was held at the University of New Hampshire in December of 2019, and the most recent meeting occurred in May of 2022.
The New Hampshire Legislature has established the Commission to Study Offshore Wind and Port Development, which meets on a regular basis to receive information from a wide variety of stakeholders regarding the development and deployment of offshore wind resources, particularly in the Gulf of Maine. The membership of the commission includes representatives from government, labor, and the business community.
The New Hampshire Department of Business and Economic Affairs (NH BEA) has created the position of Offshore Wind Industry Development Director to engage the offshore wind industry and develop business opportunities to existing and emerging New Hampshire- based businesses in this growing and significant market. A focus of the position is the development of a New Hampshire business supply chain registry, engaging in port development initiatives, and providing communities and officials with factual and educational information regarding the environmental and economic development benefits of offshore wind in the Gulf of Maine.