A first ever lease auction of floating wind power sites off the Pacific coast ended last Wednesday with bids totaling $757 million. The auction was overseen by the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and monies received will go to the U.S. Treasury.
The territory auctioned encompasses two areas. One is off the coast of Northern California near the Oregon border and the other is off the Southern Coast near Morro Bay, north of Santa Barbara.
The wind turbines will float in swaths of ocean over 20 miles off the coast and will connect to land via cables running along the seabed. The geography is consistent with many other areas along the Pacific rim making these projects a test bed for future endeavors.
"We’re excited that the vast potential of offshore wind on the west coast is on its way to fruition. Now California – and the United States – have an opportunity to be a major global exporter for the offshore floating wind industry," said Stephanie McClellan, executive director of Turn Forward, an offshore wind advocacy organization.
Each lease is for a 25 year period. It is projected that once completed the sites could generate enough energy to power 1,5 million homes.
Read full story on USA Today