North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland join forces on offshore wind projects

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The governors of North Carolina, Maryland and Virginia on Thursday announced a three-state collaboration to advance offshore wind projects in the region and promote the southeast and Mid-Atlantic United States as a hub for offshore wind energy and industry.

The creation of the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic Regional Transformative Partnership for Offshore Wind Energy Resources (SMART-POWER) provides a framework for the three states to cooperatively promote, develop, and expand offshore wind energy and the accompanying industry supply chain and workforce, Gov. Roy Cooper said in a news release. Specifically, the three states agree to form a SMART-POWER Leadership Team with representatives from each signatory jurisdiction that will work to streamline the development of regional offshore wind resources.

As southeast and Mid-Atlantic states become a focus for offshore wind developers and supply chain companies, Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia recognized that the fast-growing, global offshore wind industry has potential to drive economic development and job creation as well as reduce the emission of greenhouse gases and other harmful air pollutants. According to the United State Department of Energy, the Atlantic Coast offshore wind project pipeline is estimated to support up to 86,000 jobs, $57 billion in investments, and provide up to $25 billion in economic output by 2030.

Through the partnership, the three states have committed to work together to increase regulatory certainty, encourage manufacturing of component parts, reduce project costs through supply chain development, share information and best practices, and promote synergy between industry and the signatory jurisdictions.

The full SMART-POWER memorandum of understanding can be see here.