Full Steam Ahead for Maryland Offshore Wind Program

US Wind, Inc. (“US Wind”) joined Governor Wes Moore, Speaker of the House, Adrienne A. Jones, Senate President Bill Ferguson, and other key leaders of the Maryland General Assembly Thursday for the signing of critical legislation aimed at keeping the state’s offshore wind goals on track.

Maryland House Bill 1296 was sponsored by House Economic Matters Committee Chair CT Wilson and Vice Chair Brian Crosby. A companion bill, Senate Bill 1161, was cross-filed in the Senate, where it was sponsored by Chair of the Senate Education, Energy, and the Environment Committee Brian Feldman, and Senator Katie Hester. The law allows qualified offshore wind developers to apply for outstanding Offshore Renewable Energy Credits (“ORECs”) created as a result of changes in the market and to add additional capacity to existing projects. The new law also amends the POWER Act to add an additional solicitation to the state’s Department of General Services offshore wind procurement schedule and removes the cap on the amount of offshore wind energy the state seeks to procure.

“This legislation is a game-changer for the Maryland offshore wind program,” said Jeffrey Grybowski, US Wind CEO. “We are grateful for the unwavering support and stalwart leadership of Maryland’s leaders on this critical piece of legislation. US Wind is here to stay. I am very confident that we will build Maryland’s first offshore wind farm, first offshore wind manufacturing facility at Sparrows Point, and deliver this clean energy to the people of Delmarva for years to come.”

US Wind controls the rights to an 80,000-acre lease area located off the coast of Maryland, which is able to support close to 1,800 megawatts (“MW”) of offshore wind energy generation. In October 2023, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (“BOEM”) issued a draft environmental impact statement on US Wind’s construction and operations plan, putting the company on the path to securing final federal permits by the end of 2024. US Wind is also establishing Maryland’s first permanent offshore wind factory—Sparrows Point Steel—at the site of the former Bethlehem Steel Shipyard in Baltimore County to manufacture parts for the U.S. offshore wind industry.

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