University of Delaware
delware environmental institute

UDaily: UD Special Initiative on Offshore Wind issues report on offshore wind energy costs

A new study by the University of Delaware's Special Initiative on Offshore Wind (SIOW) reports that a commitment by Massachusetts to develop offshore wind (OSW) energy at a scale of 2,000 MW, combined with ongoing technology and industry advances, will lower previously projected costs for the clean energy source by as much as 55 percent in the next decade. That kind of cost reduction, driven by market forces, will put offshore wind on a clear path to deliver clean power at competitive prices for millions of ratepayers in the Boston area and beyond, and make the renewable resource a key contributor to the state's clean energy future.

SIOW surveyed industry experts in the region to analyze what electricity costs would look like with 2,000 MW of offshore wind energy off Massachusetts' coast from 2020-30. The study's key finding is that developing OSW at scale rather than on a project-by-project basis will lead to costs "far lower than previously contracted prices for offshore wind in the New England region," with "continuing downward trajectory in cost over the decade" as OSW is built out.

The authors conclude, "An important policy finding of this study is U.S. states can, with thoughtful but straightforward policy, lower the cost of power from offshore wind." By committing to offshore wind at scale, the report confirms that Massachusetts would be effectively enlisting the market to help it achieve that goal.