Offshore Industry News

Steps to Advance Offshore Wind Progress in Maryland Announced

As part of the Biden-Harris administration’s commitment to expand offshore wind opportunities and advance an all-of-government approach to address the climate crisis while creating good-paying jobs, the Department of the Interior announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and the State of Maryland to support the coordinated development of wind energy generation offshore Maryland.

Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland, BOEM Director Elizabeth Klein and White House National Climate Advisor Ali Zaidi joined Governor Wes Moore to make the announcement at a signing ceremony in Annapolis.

“Maryland will play an important role in helping achieve the Biden-Harris administration’s ambitious renewable energy goal of deploying 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy capacity by 2030,” said Secretary Deb Haaland. “The announcement represents another important step towards a clean, reliable energy future with good-paying jobs and economic opportunities that are accessible to communities across America.”

“With the partnership agreement, the Biden-Harris administration accelerates our work in lock step with key state partners like Maryland to build the American offshore wind industry, cut energy costs for families, and create thousands of good-paying jobs, all while tackling the climate crisis,” said President Biden’s National Climate Advisor Ali Zaidi. “Thanks to President Biden’s vision and strong partnership with Maryland state and federal leaders, the Biden-Harris administration will continue to work closely with Maryland to responsibly develop additional areas for offshore wind leasing in the Central Atlantic and grow this industry. The Biden-Harris administration will continue to use every available tool to ensure American workers and communities reap the economic and environmental benefits of this growing industry in Maryland and across the country.”

Under the MOU, BOEM and the State of Maryland will continue ongoing efforts to explore and identify potential areas for offshore wind leasing. BOEM will also continue to convene the Central Atlantic Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force with the state and other stakeholders to enhance collaboration and address challenges associated with the siting of offshore wind leasing areas. These efforts will support and augment existing and planned coordination for developing offshore wind energy in the Central Atlantic. These collaborative efforts will help support a robust supply chain, yield greater economic return for Maryland and the United States, and create good-paying domestic jobs.

“BOEM is proud of our commitment to build a robust offshore wind industry that benefits communities and co-exists with other ocean uses,” said BOEM Director Klein. “This Memorandum of Understanding solidifies our partnership to collaborate on expanding the opportunities for offshore wind energy in the Central Atlantic.”

In December 2023, the Biden-Harris administration, including the Departments of the Interior, Defense, and Commerce, and the US Coast Guard and National Aeronautics and Space Administration, joined US Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Governor Moore to announce a commitment to work jointly to evaluate additional areas off Maryland’s shores that could become wind energy areas and support the development of offshore wind projects.

President Biden’s Investing in America agenda is growing the American economy from the middle out and bottom up—from rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure, to driving over $860 billion in private sector manufacturing and clean energy investments in the United States, to creating good paying jobs and building a clean energy economy that will combat the climate crisis and make our communities more resilient.

Since the start of the Biden-Harris administration, the Department has approved the nation's first eight commercial scale offshore wind projects, held four offshore wind lease auctions—including a record-breaking sale offshore New York and New Jersey, a sale offshore the Carolinas, and the first-ever sales offshore the Pacific and Gulf Coasts—and advanced the process to establish additional Wind Energy Areas in Oregon, the Gulf of Maine and the Central Atlantic. The Department has also taken steps to grow a sustainable offshore wind industry by encouraging the use of project labor agreements, strengthening workforce training, bolstering a domestic supply chain, and through enhanced engagement with Tribes, fisheries, underserved communities, and ocean users.

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