BOEM proposes Massachusetts offshore wind lease auction

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

U.S. ocean energy regulators have announced the proposed lease sale of two new areas offshore Massachusetts for commercial wind energy leasing, totaling about 390,000 acres.

On April 6, 2018, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced that the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management would publish a Proposed Sale Notice for Commercial Leasing for Wind Power on the Outer Continental Shelf Offshore Massachusetts on April 11, 2018.

Through that Proposed Sale Notice, BOEM described its plans to conduct Atlantic Wind Lease Sale 4A. That auction would offer two lease areas offshore Massachusetts for potential commercial wind energy development: Lease OCS-A 0502 consisting of 248,015 acres, and Lease OCS-A 0503 consisting of 140,554 acres. These lease areas were previously offered in 2015, but were not sold.

The Proposed Sale Notice solicits reaffirmations of continued interest from previously qualified prospective bidders -- including 11 entities that qualified to participate in the 2015 Massachusetts lease sale. It also solicits qualification packages from any prospective bidders that BOEM has not previously qualified for a Massachusetts lease sale. The proposal also comes with a 60-day public comment period.

Following the public comment period, if BOEM proceeds with the Massachusetts lease auction, the agency will eventually publish a Final Sale Notice announcing the time and date of the lease sale. 

To date, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has awarded 13 commercial offshore wind leases, including sites off every state from Massachusetts to North Carolina.

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