US starts 2.6GW Coastal Virginia review process

Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to issue notice of intent for Dominion Energy’s planned commercial project [Image: Dominion Energy]

The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) will publish in the federal register today the notice of intent (NOI) for Dominion Energy’s proposed 2640MW Coastal Virginia commercial offshore wind farm.

The issuance of a NOI starts BOEM’s and other federal agencies’ review of the project and the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), which will take about two years.

It also opens a 30-day public comment period during which time federal agencies will conduct scoping meetings and accept comments to inform the preparation of the EIS.
Dominion Energy filed in December 2020 its Construction and Operations Plan (COP) to build the wind farm in a 45,648-hectare commercial lease area that begins 43km off the coast of Virginia Beach and extends an additional 24km east in the Atlantic Ocean.

BOEM’s issuance of the NOI reflects its determination that the COP is complete and ready for the public review process, Dominion said.

The company said it expects to file with the Virginia State Corporation Commission later this year for regulatory approval for the commercial project.

This follows the successful completion of the two-turbine, 12MW Coastal Virginia pilot wind farm located adjacent to the commercial development, which became operational in October 2020.

Dominion Energy chair, president and chief executive Robert Blue said: “The Notice of Intent marks an important regulatory milestone and ensures CVOW remains on schedule to complete construction in 2026, so we can deliver clean, renewable offshore wind energy to Dominion Energy Virginia customers.

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“We look forward to continuing to work with our federal regulators and the public as we move forward with the environmental review process.”

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam said: “Virginia is all in on offshore wind. We are developing the infrastructure, workforce, supply chain, and manufacturing capabilities needed to capture the many benefits of this emerging industry.

“This announcement puts our Commonwealth on a path to harnessing the power of wind to produce affordable and reliable renewable energy, create thousands of new jobs, and meet our ambitious climate goals.

“We are grateful for the federal government’s partnership as we work to advance our clean energy future with this large-scale commercial wind project along Virginia’s coast.”

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