N.J. and N.Y. announce joint offshore wind program

By: - January 12, 2022 12:27 pm

New York and New Jersey hope to generate 16 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2035. (Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)

Nearly one half million acres off the shores of New Jersey and New York will be auctioned next month in an effort to generate more clean energy.

The wind energy auction for six lease areas in the offshore area known as the New York Bight will take place on Feb. 23, and will be one of the largest in the nation’s history, according to the U.S. Department of Interior.

“We’re further cementing the region, not just in terms of clean energy, but as a domestic supply chain for offshore wind generation and manufacturing, which is a game changer in and of itself,” Gov. Phil Murphy said Wednesday in a call joined by New York Gov. Kathy Hochul and Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland.

New York and New Jersey hope to generate a combined 16 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2035. The Biden administration has committed to generating 30 gigawatts nationwide by 2030.

“We are at an inflection point for domestic offshore wind energy and development. We must seize this moment, and we must do it together,” Haaland said.

The closest lease area to New Jersey will be roughly 20 nautical miles away. (Source: Department of the Interior)

Officials didn’t say what the target completion date is, but estimate the wind farms will produce up to 7 gigawatts of energy for New Jersey and New York. That amount could power nearly 2 million homes.

The new wind turbines, in six different locations across the 480,000 acres, will be roughly 27 nautical miles off the coast of New Jersey, and about 20 nautical miles away from the New York coast, according to a press release from the Department of Interior.

AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler applauded the state leaders’ commitments to the projects, and pointed to the union jobs these investments will create.

“Offshore wind is an opportunity to build a diverse, inclusive, and equitable workforce. It’s our chance to show fighting climate change and creating good paying, overwhelmingly, as I said, union jobs — those aren’t at odds with each other. In fact, they go hand in hand,” Murphy said.

Since taking office, Murphy has ramped up support for the wind sector as part of his goal of combating climate change. The New Jersey Wind Port project broke ground in September, which will bring thousands of jobs to the 200-acre project and is expected to be completed in 2023.


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Sophie Nieto-Munoz
Sophie Nieto-Munoz

Sophie Nieto-Muñoz, a New Jersey native and former Trenton statehouse reporter for NJ.com, shined a spotlight on the state’s crumbling unemployment system and won several awards for investigative reporting from the New Jersey Press Association. She was a finalist for the Livingston Award for Young Journalists for her report on PetSmart's grooming practices, which was also recognized by the New York Press Club. Sophie speaks Spanish and is proud to connect to the Latinx community through her reporting.