NYPA Issues RFP for Great Lakes Wind Power

The New York Power Authority (NYPA) this week released a request for proposals (RFP) for the development of offshore wind power
projects in the New York State waters of Lake Erie and/or Lake Ontario.

“Today we reach a milestone in New York’s energy history by seeking the development of a wind energy project in the New York waters of the Great Lakes," said Richard M. Kessel, president and CEO of NYPA. “The significance of developing the natural wind resources of New York’s own Great Lakes will help diversify the state’s energy mix, strengthen our energy independence, promote economic development, create jobs and expand the use of clean, green electricity to reap the vital benefit of a better environment for future generations.”

NYPA is soliciting proposals for the development of a
utility scale, offshore wind power project in the range of 120
megawatts (MW) to 500 MW. The project would interconnect with new
or existing transmission facilities of the appropriate regional
electric utilities, which are all controlled by the New York
Independent System Operator (NYISO). NYPA would purchase the full output of the
project under a long-term Power Purchase Agreement (PPA).

NYPA
anticipates the following deadlines for the RFP process.  The date for
submitting an optional Notice of Intent to submit a proposal is March
20, 2010. The due date for proposals is June 1, 2010.  Any winning
project(s) would be expected to be awarded by December 2010.  The
target date for completion of the PPA negotiations is May 31, 2011.

"The development of a wind energy project in the Great Lakes off the
shores of New York will bring us another step towards my goal to meet
30% of the State’s electricity needs from renewable resources by 2015,
help demonstrate the significantly untapped potential of offshore wind,
and bring new clean energy jobs to Western New York," Governor Paterson
said.

NYPA first announced its interest in offshore wind power from the great lakes on Earth Day, April 22 of this year. The Power Authority has commissioned the preparation of certain studies related to the project. Pertinent information from such studies will be posted on the NYPA Web site. Those studies include conducting preliminary wind resource, site screening and environmental studies, and other technical studies with respect to the New York waters of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario to investigate potentially feasible locations for project sites as shown in the RFP.

Respondents may propose projects located anywhere in the New York State waters of Lake Erie and/or Lake Ontario (subject to certain restrictions such as shipping lanes and avian exclusions).

NYPA said it will give more favorable consideration to proposals that include: long-term economic benefits for the region including the use of local labor and materials; the manufacturing of wind components; firm pricing; a target commercial operation date in 2015; and a strong likelihood of public acceptance.

In August, Energy Composites Corporation (ECC)(OTCBB:ENCC) created the Great Lakes Wind Consortium, and invited leaders from government, industry, and academia to join efforts to develop wind farms on the Great Lakes.

In September, Canadian Hydro Developers, Inc. announced that it will acquire the rights to develop a 4,400-megawatts (MW) offshore wind in one of the Great Lakes bordering Ontario, Canada. 

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