The investments in offshore wind are an effort to fill New Jersey’s energy needs with renewable sources by 2050, as called for in the state’s energy master plan. (Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)
A second wind energy firm has signed on to lease space at the New Jersey Wind Port, Gov. Phil Murphy announced Wednesday before a gathering of South Jersey business leaders.
Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind on Wednesday signed a letter of intent that will eventually see the firm lease 35 acres of the offshore wind marshaling port in Lower Alloways Creek in Salem County.
The firm, a joint venture between Shell New Energies and a renewable energy subsidiary of the French utility EDF group, also holds a contract to stand up a 1.5-gigawatt wind energy plant miles off of New Jersey’s eastern shore.
“You may ask how big a deal is one-and-a-half gigawatts. It’s enough to power 700,000 homes, so it’s a big deal,” Murphy said during the South Jersey Chamber of Commerce’s annual luncheon.
Atlantic Shores, whose offshore wind project is the largest in the state and among the largest in the nation, is the second company to sign a letter of intent to lease space at the New Jersey Windport. Ørsted, a Danish power company, signed a letter of intent last April.
The governor said Atlantic Shores expects its wind port operations to create 200 jobs directly, with other indirect benefits for local economies in Salem and Gloucester counties.
The state’s push into offshore wind is long-standing, predating Murphy’s tenure as governor by more than seven years. Gov. Chris Christie in August 2010 signed the bill authorizing the wind port and a series of subsidies and tax credits to firms developing offshore wind farms in New Jersey.
“Back in 2010, this was a concept that was an idea that’s now really coming to fruition. You’re going to see a lot of people getting employed, and we’re going to make offshore wind an American industry, so I’m really excited about it,” said former Sen. Steve Sweeney, who helmed the upper chamber when that legislation was signed.
Sweeney added activities at the port would provide new opportunities for residents in the 3rd Legislative District, which he represented before his surprise reelection loss to Sen. Ed Durr (R-Gloucester) in 2021. Sweeney has said he is undecided about running for his old seat in November’s legislative elections.
The investments in offshore wind are an effort to fill New Jersey’s energy needs with renewable sources by 2050, as called for in the state’s energy master plan.
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