The Virginian Pilot | Jeff Hampton | March 16, 2017
KITTY HAWK, N.C.
Avangrid Renewables won the bid Thursday to lease 122,405 acres off the Outer Banks coast for a wind farm.
The company competed against three others before offering the winning amount of $9.1 million, according to a release from the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.
Avangrid Renewables also built a land-based wind farm of about 22,000 acres near Elizabeth City.
The company is affiliated with the Iberdrola Group, a company that has developed offshore wind farms near Europe, according to a statement from Avangrid Renewables.
The company "felt we were well positioned to secure this bid," James P. Torgerson, CEO of Avangrid Inc., said in the statement.
Also participating in the lease sale were Wind Future LLC, Statoil Wind US LLC, and wpd offshore Alpha LLC.
Avangrid will have to set up testing towers and other equipment to assess the site before submitting a construction plan over the next approximately five years, including how many wind towers to build and how far apart to build them. The federal government will review the project and hold public hearings before construction can begin.
The area has the potential generating capacity of 1,486 megawatts, enough to power more than 500,000 homes, according to the release.
This is the 13th offshore wind farm lease issued by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management on the East Coast, including one near Virginia Beach. Dominion Virginia Power won that lease in 2013 with a $1.6 million bid.
The Kitty Hawk wind area is about 27 miles offshore and covers an area roughly 30 miles long. Measured wind speeds average 20 mph 260 feet above the ocean's surface, and the turbines could reach much higher than that.
Jeff Hampton, 252-338-0159, email@example.com